Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Share It!

This week we were interviewed in the church by President Dibb.  I'll have to get a few pictures of the meetinghouse here in Verona, it's amazing.  The Spirit is so strong every time I'm in there.  We love to have lessons within its walls.  So, at an appointed time, we rode our bikes there to meet with our mission president and spend a few minutes in an office with him to chat about the work and receive some inspired counsel.

Among many great words, he challenged our companionship--with both Anziano Petterborg and I, separately--to teach 21 lessons this week.  Twenty-one.  That may seem like a laughable number to elders in South America, but to Italian missionaries... well... I think the most I've ever taught in a week is 11.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

See? I told you

My siblings are so cool.  Audrey's happy at BYU, Gentry's giving conference talks, Jed's running faster than Forest Gump, and I'm just basking in their glory.  What a privilege to be an older brother! I haven't always been a very good one (read: very nice one), but I'm glad I didn't seem to do too much damage.  Everyone's running strong, and I think we've got our goodly parents to thank for that. Thanks, Mom and Dad.  (Especially Mom.  [No offense, Dad, but we both know she deserves an extra pat on the back.])

I have pictures!  Lemme just upload them here...
Here's the new crew, with a couple familiar faces:  Anziano Modugno (I love him!),
 Anziano Pinnock (yes, the "famous" one from YouTube),
Anziano Petterborg (indeed related to the school nurse in Napoleon Dynamite!),
 and me (wee!).  Aren't we a pretty bunch?

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Almost Skipping

I got the birthday pictures!  Thank you, thank you, thank you!  And even more thanks to everyone who was involved in the most personalized, touching present I've ever received.  How fitting for such a monumental birthday: two decades, celebrated in Italy.  Wow.  I can't believe how lucky I am, both for where I am, what I am, and who loves me.  I love you, too!

I catch myself thinking of my family more often as of late.  We met with a lively woman from Ghana this week who's first child is almost two years old.  She's very intelligent and observational, and she talked about the beauty and miracle of raising children.  Family is so important and so powerful.  It can bring unbridled joy.  Makes me think of something a friend of mine in Padova used to say: "You haven't lived until you've planted a tree, written a book, and had a child."

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

This is way better than going to Hollywood

Buon Compleanno Anziano Burton
Thank you, as always, for the wonderful email, Mom.  I always feel so loved when I open up my inbox.

Unfortunately, I won't be seeing the famous Ferraran Balloon Festival.  I thought I would be staying here for a really long time, what with there being a new Mission President with unpredictable transfer methods.  Instead, I got the call this week: I'm being transferred.