Monday, August 28, 2017


Ciao tutti!!

This week I asked an English student how he was doing. He said, "I'm fine. Alive and kicking."  It was hilarious hahaha.

We passed our investigator Domenico over to the zone leaders and it was such a good lesson! We asked him if he had a chance to read the Book of Mormon and he said he read about four chapters. He then began telling us the stories of Nephi and Lehi and Laman and Lemuel. We talked about the importance of prayer and studying the scriptures. In Romans 15:4 we read about why the scriptures were written, which is so that we might have HOPE!!
We also had a lesson with Sylvia and Christian and Rosa who we met at the gesso last Sunday!! They also had read the Book of Mormon! We explained the importance of the Book of Mormon. Something really cool this week I put together comes from Ezekiel 37:16-17 where it talks about the two sticks (the Bible and the Book of Mormon). The Bible is the stick of Judah, and the Book of Mormon is the stick of Joseph. In 1 Nephi 5:14 and 1 Nephi 6:2 Nephi explains that they ARE descendants of Joseph, the son of Jacob. WE HAVE BOTH STICKS AND THEY ARE ONE IN OUR HANDS!! It's so cool! Anyway, the lesson was great, they are very prepared, but unfortunately, they didn't make it to church. Updates to come on them next week!!!

Ok, this week I learned something about the atonement that I would like to share with all of you. We were on a bus and the Controllers got on. I showed them my ticket as Sorella James rummaged through her purse to find her abbonamento. She could only find the one from July so the man gave us two options: one, to call an agency and see if we had somehow registered that she bought the abbonamento for August, or two, go to the front of the bus and buy a new ticket. I, assuming she had money, waited with the man in the back of the bus while she went to talk to the driver. I felt really prompted that I should talk to him and tell him who we are and why we are here. In the middle of the conversation, we both saw Sorella James put a €20 bill into her wallet, turn around and begin to cry. Long story short, the man next to me told her she didn't need to cry, went and bought her a ticket, brought it back, stamped it, and then got off the bus. I didn't realize she didn't have coins so I tried to pay him back with my money but he wouldn't accept it.

I realized that this man, in that moment, was like Christ was for all of us. It was not the man's responsibility to have a ticket on the bus and it was not his responsibility to buy Sorella James a ticket or to give her a fine. Instead, for whatever reason, he decided to show mercy and bought her a ticket without accepting recompense or recognition. Christ did not commit our sins, nor is He responsible for paying for them. But He did.

I was very humbled and want to strive to be that person for someone else. I want to show that same mercy and charity to others even when it is not asked of me and when it is not my responsibility.

I hope you all know I am still ALIVE AND KICKING!!!


Sorella G ♥️🇮🇹

Best food I ate this week: peaches dipped in brown sugar, grilled, on top of chopped nuts (pistachio, almond, peanut, hazelnut), with ice cream and honey on top

Monday, August 21, 2017


Ok, so this week flew by!!!

Technically it did start on Wednesday, but it was a very quick one full of laughs and way too much food.

We have a member in a little city called Trani. She gave us a referral!!! His name is Domenico and he is in a wheelchair and has a speech impediment. I haven't been able to figure out the reason or cause behind those things, if he was born like that or if he has some kind of sickness, but he is so awesome. He is about forty years old and we taught the plan of salvation and he seemed to absorb it all really well. He accepted a Book of Mormon and said he will read it and pray to know if it's true! (Also Sorella Lomartire fed us lunch afterward and I definitely had one of those "hide e food while the member isn't looking" experiences hahaha)

On the way home, we met this African man named Eric from Nigeria who offered us some of his fresh coconuts that he was eating. We started talking and he said he wanted a Book of Mormon and that he wants to come to church! Unfortunately, he didn't come to church so we will have to follow up with him again, but at least his number works!

We met with a famous less active lady (famous in the sense that if you are a missionary and have served in Bari, you know who sorella panza is) who spent twenty whole minutes telling us about the history of her cats haha. We won't be visiting again for a little while.....

 Oh my goodness. We ran into Leonardo again. I don't know if you remember me talking about him, but at this point, we run into him often. We try very hard to avoid him, but we were looking for a less active in Bari Vecchia and he stopped us telling us it's not possible how he could be staring into the most beautiful eyes he has ever seen in his life. (Do I feel uncomfortable? Yes but if you move away he just steps closer so you just have to sit and listen) then he offered us gelato and said that he wanted us to teach us what we believe in. Hahaha oh, old creepy Italian men. Last night during the gesso he showed up and said to us, "siete talmente bellissime che mi
fate volare." 😳

Also last night though we met the coolest people ever!! Anziano Wilkey said to me, "come with us to go talk to these Ragazzi ( a teenage boy and two teenage girls). And right as we go to talk to them the boy comes over to us and says, "what are you guys doing here?" We managed to teach the plan of salvation, some of the restoration, we mentioned the law of chastity and the word of wisdom, and they were so wanting to know more about it. This girl just kept saying about how we can always add to our knowledge and how she was sad that she didn't get to go to church yesterday and how she has to wait a whole week to be able to go again! THIS NEVER HAPPENS! I was so confused and was thinking maybe she was like joking??? She took a Book of Mormon and was talking about how at least she will be able to read so she can be prepared for
church. Miracles.

As for the two girls from last week, one of them said "ill call you guys if I want to know more" the other one we haven't been able to get a hold of.

But this week I have really realized how imperfect we as children of God are. Members of the church and non-members. I gave a talk in church yesterday on Moses 1:39. It's pretty incredible how Heavenly Father only wants us to be happy. Out of all of the things he could desire and out of all of the glory he could obtain on His own, He wants us to be able to obtain eternal life. If we want to be like our Father in Heaven shouldn't we want that same thing for the people that surround us? It takes a great deal of charity.

Things are looking up for the work here in Bari! I am happy and healthy and trying to enjoy every second!


Sorella G ♥️🇮🇹

This is Leonardo

Tuesday, August 15, 2017


Ok so this week was JAM PACKED and so many cool things happened, but to not write a novel, I will try to pick and choose a few of the coolest. I could have titled this email "I made it through another Italian summer" or "rainbows!!!" Or something else, but I think the one I picked is the most fitting title...

I am going to follow up and update you all on how our finding new investigators plan went haha. So this week we got 0 NEW INVESTIGATORS!! That's a bummer, BUT we DID do 10 hours of finding, and we were able to meet our goal of meeting with four members this week (which is a lot for us). So I was so happy that we were able to reach those goals. 

We did everything from offering people brownies, asking people which elders tie they liked better to get started talking with them, asking them to identify a scripture from the Bible and one from the Book of Mormon, a wheel of fortune thing where they can win prizes like a Book of Mormon, pamphlets, dvds, pass along cards, etc etc. and then the best one this week was our VIOLIN CASA IN CASA FINDING!!

We decided to take my violin, and go with the other two sisters into apartment buildings asking if we could play a song for them to help them somewhat feel the spirit. So this lady was leaving her apartment building and we ran in and she was like, "what are you doing?" Our response, "we are going to play music for people" her response, "don't ring Lopez" so we went in. We started at the eighth floor and weren't having any luck. Then we got to the fourth floor, the last door on the floor and this young 20 year old girl answered the door. We asked her if we could play a song for her and she started laughing and ran away to go get her friends. She brought two other girls to the door and it was one of their birthdays!!!!! So I quickly whipped out happy birthday on the violin and then we asked if we could play and sing Nearer My God to Thee and they said yes. Then they invited us in so we went in and started talking. They were very interested in English course and doing an American/Italian dessert switch type thing so we are super excited about that!! It was so cool!!!! They will be out of town thanks to Ferragosto until September, but hopefully we can meet with them again!!

Also the next day we did the exact same thing and two young 20 year old girls answered the door AGAIN. ON THE FOURTH FLOOR LAST DOOR! TWO DAYS IN A ROW!!! This girl has a boyfriend who is American and she really needs to learn English they were a little bit less interested, but it was so cool to have basically the same experience two days in a row. 

We also had zone conference which was really cool. President Pickerd is now back in Italy and we missed him a lot!!! Sorella Pickerd will hopefully return in September, but anyway. He also told the whole zone that I am the oldest missionary in the zone. THANKS PRESIDENT!!

We did receive a potential investigator from one of the members we met with this week that we will meet with last night and we saw the biggest miracle ever last night!!

We stopped these three girls and did the Book of Mormon/Bible thing with them. Basically what it is is we read them two scriptures and they have to guess which one is in the Bible and which one is in the Book of Mormon (they always get it wrong haha) and we started telling them why we are here and what the Book of Mormon is and stuff and it was so cool!! I asked if I could leave a Book of Mormon with one of the girls and she said "yeah for sure! I think my mom would love this!" She also gave us her number and one of the other girls wanted a Book of Mormon and we got her number as well!! MIRACLES. 

These things may seem like little things and it's not like we have any progressing investigators or investigators with a baptismal date, BUT the Lord is blessing us so much. These little miracles help me to know that He is there. That He loves me. That He is preparing people to be taught the gospel of Jesus Christ. That He loves His children and is aware of them. 

There's a quote I love in preach my gospel about goal setting that says, "THE ULTIMATE MEASURE OF SUCCESS is not in achieving goals alone but in the service you render and the progress of others. Goals are a means of helping you bring about much good among Heavenly Father's children."

GOALS ARE SO IMPORTANT! And they help us to stay on the path of returning to our Heavenly Father. 

Have a happy FERRAGOSTO!!!!!!

Ciao ciao!

Sorella G ♥️🇮🇹

Also I think the heat is over!! Woot woot!!

Monday, August 7, 2017

Unprofitable Servants

Hey family!!!

How was your week??? Mine was probably the hottest week of my life. Meno male we have air conditioning in our bedroom or I wouldn't have slept for the past week and a half. It's SO HOT!!!! And so humid. It's like when you step outside you can hardly breathe because the air is suffocating you haha. I actually kind of like it. The sweat is pretty gross but once you get past the fact that you are dripping sweat 24/7, the heat is quite enjoyable, in my opinion. I despise getting in the shower sweaty and getting out of the shower still sweaty though. It's like you don't even get to enjoy being clean for one second!!!!

Other than the heat it has been a good week. We still haven't been able to see any luck with the missionary work. I met our one investigator, Valeria. She talked for a little bit about how small her house is, how hot it is, how she's sick of doing all of the chores for her and her boyfriend, and then we finally got to the point of being able to share a message and her estetista showed up to do her nails!!! PEOPLE. Haha so we had to leave unfortunately and she gave us a bidone (by setting up an appointment and then wasn't home) the other time we
tried to see her.

We have some really great recent converts though we have had a couple of lessons with. Monica and massimo are this darling couple and they love the gospel and have the strongest testimonies I have ever seen. They really don't seem like new converts. Then there is a new convert named Valeria and she gained a testimony of the law of chastity before she even knew our church existed and hen she searched something about it and found our church. These are not normal occurrences people!! So hopefully Sorella James and I can find our own miracles.

This week we reached our goal of giving out bigliettini!! Which was super happy for us. We had quite a few really good conversations with some really great people, but no one really interested yet in the gospel. Sorella James and I had a really great weekly planning session where we planned out that we are going to try to do at least 9 hours of finding this week. That's roughly an hour and a half daily, not including Monday's. Which is like a minimum. Then we planned to
hopefully see four members this week and then made a list of ten ex-investigators to call. We have a goal to get two new investigators from our own finding, two from members, and two from ex investigators. So we'll see how it goes!!

I also got to see Mariella from Taranto this week again!!! Her daughters boyfriend is from Bari and so they came to pick her up and said hello!! She was so sad she couldn't bring me tiramisu or food so she bought us like three packages of food for us to take home and then bought us waffles to eat right then. She's the nicest lady ever.

This week was really humbling for me. I read a quote about parenting that I thought goes not just for parenting. It says,

"A sweet and obedient child will enroll a father or mother only in

Parenting 101. If you are blessed with a child who tests your patience
to the nth degree, you will be enrolled in Parenting 505. Rather than
wonder what you might have done wrong in the premortal life to be so
deserving, you might consider the more challenging child a blessing
and opportunity to become more godlike yourself. With which child will
your patience, long-suffering, and other Christlike virtues most
likely be tested, developed, and refined? Could it be possible that
you need this child as much as this child needs you?"

In Mosiah 2:20-22 he talks about how we are unprofitable servants. I was pondering on that and thinking, "well I agree, we are all and always will be unprofitable WHY DO WE EVEN TRY????" Haha. 

There is something super important that we need to understand. Kind Benjamin is commanded to say that ALL THAT IS REQUIRED OF US IS TO KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS. That's all we have to do. And in return He promises to bless us. And He will never break that promise. In verse 24 it says, "....therefore he hath paid you. And he are still indebted to him, and are, and will be forever and ever." He loves us. He doesn't ask much of us. And for that which He does ask, He promises to bless us. SO MUCH LOVE!!!

I hope you all have a great week!!!

Con affetto,

Sorella G ❤️🇮🇹