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Apr 20, 2011

He died for us, Lets live for him.

Hi family, I love you all. Congrats to Abby and Ukiah, the thai food looked REAL good...and so did you ;) and good luck with finals to Zoe. Are finals soon? Did I already wish you good luck on them? Cant remember.

Well, the cammineto we planned was a big success...In a very humbling way. After spending hours on the slideshow we pulled it up on Giuseppes computer and the file type wouldnt read. Well, luckily I had saved all the pictures so then I threw them in Windows Movie Maker with the song and got it all exported just in time. When we watched it it almost made me cry even...I have it saved on my iPod so Ill have to take it public when I get back. Then everytime I pulled up a picture or a video it wouldnt go full screen (because I got put in charge of the technical directing) and Giuseppe would be in the background waving his hands trying to show me what I needed to do. Mamma mia, his computer did not run like the ones I am used to, I feel like I am going to have to relearn everything when I come back. And then, I had the Restoration movie queued up where it needed to be, but when I opened the other videos they replaced it. So I had to hurry and open it and find the right place and then...it was in English.

So Anz. Reyes begins translating. And I didnt know whether I wanted to die or just bust up laughing. And then we had a clip of Pres Monson and I paused it at the end, so that his picture would still be up there, but he had his mouth open kind of awkwardly and it was just a series of misfortune.

But at the end we got a few really sincere comments from people who really felt the spirit of the message. And that, is why we need the spirit when we are doing the Lords work, because we cannot trust in the arm of flesh...or technology to help us out.

And I sort of saw it coming, because I have yet to have a successful audiovisual production at any point in my life.

Sunday we had lunch with the bishops family. He is soooo hilarious. Theyre nephew Christian just left on a mission for Washington so they were asking us all about the MTC and McDonalds and making fun of him in an American accent. Saying, "Sono Anziano Mongelli, andiamo a McDonalds." and they are like, at least he knows the word for McDonalds. Bruttle, but funny for us. Also, Vescovo got a kick out of talking about Pres. Monsons last address where he said, "every temple performs the same functions, but the Rome temple..."

Also on Sunday Slla Spagnoletti started singing when she saw us, "Piccole! Piccole!" (essentially, "little ones!") She is the best.

Yesterday in English course we listened to the song There Can Be Miracles and talked about miracles and at first everyone was like, "it has to be surprising, supernatural, unexplainable" and then Frank goes, "it has to be something from God." and LinoPino (not his name really) said, I was reading in the Gospel and the part where Christ heals someone and forgives his sin, but the real miracle was that he healed the sins. It really hit me. And we had a really neat discussion about what a miracle really is.

Then this guy comes up to me after class and says, "Congratulations, really. This was my first time and there will be others because I enjoyed it." And this other guy who has an accent that can only be described as a British Valley Girl was new two. We keep getting new people and it is exciting.

Before that we had a hilarious corralation meeting where Fllo Curci said, "some members talk a lot, I cant think of any right now, but..." and we all stared at him.

Antonias baptisimal interview will be this weekend unless she goes out of town for Pasqua. We were going through the questions with her and she was like, "how about you just write down the answers for me" haha! We told her we cant write down the answers because they are all about how she feels and her testimony. She makes us laugh so much and always comes to church looking so sharp. All the members are in love with her and so are we. Her family doesnt support her all the much and thinks shes crazy but she is strong because she knows its true.

So tomorrow is Sacred Thursday and in these parts Easter is actually a week long, which is pretty exciting, apparently there are some crazy processions around here, but not so much in Bari itself. Friday we are having a display of Giuseppe (Sorella Jenkins Giuseppe) art he has done of Christ life and his final week. It should be really good. We hope people come. Pubblicita is not our wards strong spot.

HE Lives!! Christ is Risen and guides us today just like has in past days. He loves us.


Sorella Laws

for those of you who missed it...

Every temple is a house of God, filling the same functions and with identical blessings and ordinances. The Rome Italy Temple, uniquely, is being built in one of the most historic locations in the world, a city where the ancient Apostles Peter and Paul preached the gospel of Christ and where each was martyred.
Last October, as we gathered on a lovely pastoral site in the northeast corner of Rome, it was my opportunity to offer a prayer of dedication as we prepared to break the ground. I felt impressed to call upon Italian senator Lucio Malan and Rome’s vice-mayor Giuseppe Ciardi to be among the first to turn a shovelful of earth. Each had been a part of the decision to allow us to build a temple in their city.

The day was overcast but warm, and although rain threatened, not more than a drop or two fell. As the magnificent choir sang in Italian the beautiful strains of “The Spirit of God,” one felt as though heaven and earth were joined in a glorious hymn of praise and gratitude to Almighty God. Tears could not be restrained.

In a coming day, the faithful in this, the Eternal City, will receive ordinances eternal in nature in a holy house of God.

I express my undying gratitude to my Heavenly Father for the temple now being built in Rome and for all of our temples, wherever they are. Each one stands as a beacon to the world, an expression of our testimony that God, our Eternal Father, lives, that He desires to bless us and, indeed, to bless His sons and daughters of all generations. Each of our temples is an expression of our testimony that life beyond the grave is as real and as certain as is our life here on earth. I so testify.

My beloved brothers and sisters, may we make whatever sacrifices are necessary to attend the temple and to have the spirit of the temple in our hearts and in our homes. May we follow in the footsteps of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who made the ultimate sacrifice for us, that we might have eternal life and exaltation in our Heavenly Father’s kingdom. This is my sincere prayer, and I offer it in the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ the Lord, amen.

I want to add my own testimony that God has a perfect plan for us in which we can make covenants with him that last not only for this life but on through the eternities. We promise to follow him and he endows us with his power. This is why we build temples and this is why we baptize. God needs us to do our part so he can bless us.

We are tired.

We celebrted Pasqua early with giant chocolate eggs.

I was excited, but then the prize in mine was super lame so I was less excited.

It was Slla Footes Birthday and her dad always buys her a red rose. I enlisted the help of the Anziani and they came up with this. My response was, ..Um, this is an entire forest.. to which they said, ..He asked us if we wanted normal or deluxe. And we said deluxe va bene..

Slla Foote was surprised and it all went well.

a pic of me and Slla Hashey who has the same jacket as me and happens to know two people I know.. Lynzie and Whitney Graham.

Okay, so yesterday during our prep day myldsmail was down so we couldnt email and we ate I watched Slla Foote sleep instead. And we have been living a hectic life lately. In a good way. There is just so. much. to. do. And we are SO tired. And now I only have pochissimi minuti to write you because I am making an INSANE slideshow and it has taken forever.

p.s. Thank you to Devin Graham, Amy Jo, Kelsie Moore, because I got permission to search online for pictures for this amazing fireside we are doing and...well, I stole your photographs. Even Mollys Ultrasounds are making an appearance if we can get them to work. The jist of the slideshow is that we have everything because God loves us so its all about nature and families and beautiful things.

example, yesterday evening we went to the church to do the prova. Bishop was supposed to help us, but he came late, so we spent some time cutting bunny noses out of felt with the Relief Society until he finally came. Then his computer didnt even end up working. but, on the bright side he had Mamma Mia music and we got to make fun of him for that. ..Mamma Mia? You have that on your iPod?.. No, Bishop, thats on YOUR computer. .. Oh, well, it is a great musical, Dancing Queen, that is a great song. Then after enlisting the help of five other people and lots of comments about how the Sisters cause us all kinds of problems (Anz. Reyes and Kafel are out of town and therefore not there to help) we finally used Giuseppes computer. Luckily near everyone was at the church because all the activities were that night. And its going to be good, but we havent finished the slideshow yet and its taking WAY more time than it should.

We had an amazing lesson with Bishop and Antonia, she got SO excited when we said he was coming and was like, ..We have to move into the other room!!.. So we moved from our usual spot in the kitchen where we have sat many a time watching her sew into the dining room. It was a happy occassion. I told her what you said, mom, and she was so pleased. She said to say hi to you for her. I still dont have a picture with her, she said I had to wait til Sunday because then shell be all dressed up.

We ran into Chilotam this week. He asked us why we havent called and we told him it was because he said HE would call. He then turned to me and said, ..Hows your boyfriend, do you call him often?.. ..Um, no, we can only talk through letters.. ..Do you miss him.. ..Yeah, but its okay.. and then later Slla Foote goes, ..You have a boyfriend?.. I have NO idea where he got that one, but I just went with it. Then he asked what we were doing and when we told him he responded ..No. When you are talking to people you are not working.. So. I guess I should take back what I said, we havent been working at all lately.

We went to Bitonto Sunday and they love us there. Meanwhile, our ward was like why do you have to go to Bitonto!? We have been to Loseto twice and always have amazing adventures in the little town talking to everyone on the bus and making friends with people walking their dog and everyone who works at the two stores that are there.

I love you,

Sorella Laws

Apr 7, 2011

boun giorno!

Hello Family!!!

Well, another beautiful week has come and gone. Its going quickly.
Explanation for mom. So we are at a members house in Bitonto (not our zone, but we had to go anyway) and she goes, I cant let you leave with that thing on your face, I know how to get rid of them, I have done it tons of times before. And I was like, Alright. I trust them. So next thing I know I am laying on the couch and her husband gets a giant light and all the kids are watching. She used a lot of disinfectant, dont worry. But yeah, that would be the Italian version of professional surgery.

Last Friday we got to take a field trip to Brindisi
because the Anziani there are teaching a girl that just really loves the Sorelle and wanted to meet with us. It was sort of a miracle because we got the last bus to the train station before a strike started.

And we ended up accidentally getting on the nice EuroStar train because it turned out some of the trains were striking too. But we got there...and in style. The Anziani picked us up and we walked to their church, which is tucked away in a building with a bunch of other offices. Then they get a call that shes not coming. They were flipping out and telling us how she ALWAYS comes and they were so sorry we had to travel an hour, etc. etc.

And then she walks in laughing her head off.
And we decided right then and there that we were going to like her.
Her name is Sara and she is awesome. And then the Anziani bought us gelato because the train we were supposed to take back wasnt running. But we made it back )almost) in time and it was all well. Sorella Kelly called us that night (right as we were about to call to say we were running late) and told us
we were staying in BARI!!
So it was a good Friday.

Sunday morning we didnt have church because Conference wasnt going to play until Sunday afternoon so we went to the park to talk to people. And there was a marathon going on so there were people running all over the place warming up and then they sang the Italy national anthem--aka the greatest song ever--and started running. We talked to some interesting people and ran into Frank from English course who had run the marathon,
which in the end wasnt a real marathon but 9 miles.

Conference was awesome.
All through President Monsons talk about the temple we (all us missionaries who were in the basement watching it in English) were thinking,
talk about Rome! talk about Rome!
and then he did!!

At the very end.
So great.
It is going to be glorious!!
All the talks were great. I love how they emphasized overcoming trials and helping and serving one another.

Last night we had ward council which is always hialrious because our bishop is the coolest. He was like, Okay, what are we doing for Pasqua? A picnic? And he is making ward conference a weekend long affair with pre'conference and he was writing all these things down in his agenda and then goes,
And of course Panzarotti! (filled pastries)

Most of the day we walk around talking in English accents
making fun of the way the Italians speak English.
I promise we love them lots.

We are seeing lots of little miracles every day.
That is how life works after all. And this is a short email because the computers were down for 20 minutes and now we are mostly out of time because we are going to get FroYo with the Anziani

(Anz. Avesani is living us and we are oh so sad)
and this week just went by really fast.
But its sunny and nice out and things are going swimmingly.
I love you,
Sorella Laws