This week has been pretty interesting, ha-ha! I was transferred again and am now in Clearwater which is a small town of 5,000 people. It is so far spread out and is in the middle of nowhere, ha-ha. But it is awesome.
So Tuesday we had the Zone Temple Trip and it was awesome being able to go into the Langley Temple. It was very peaceful in there and the spirit was strong. After that we did the normal P-Day things since that became P-Day - shopping and all that fun stuff, J. Once it was time to Proselyte we tracted some streets in Port Coquitlam and we went down a street that had four houses. The first three said “No” to us, and then we weren't sure whether to continue or not but we decided to and it was great! We stumbled upon a less active convert that had moved to the area recently. He was at his parent’s house and so we took down his information and asked if we could stop by and teach him and his wife. He said that would be fine and that they don't go to church because it is at 9:00 AM. We were hoping to help them remember the importance of going to church. I hope the other Elders can reactivate them; that would be awesome.
Then on Wednesday, we street contacted and I like it a bit more than tracting, just because generally the people are nicer and Bus Stops! Bus Stops are awesome because they are waiting for a bus so you can easily talk to people. I have noticed that I don't like to initiate the conversation. I like to wait for other Elders to start a conversation and after a minute I will join in because then I know how the conversation is going.
We met a lady named Amy and she said that she might come to church on Sunday. It was awesome because she seemed interested in our church and I hope the Elders saw her at church. Also while street contacting, a lady actually called us over and asked us if we were from Utah. I don't think she was a member but she was super nice and we gave her a mormon.org
card and told her to request us. She said she would, so hopefully the Elders will get that appointment soon. We taught a less active member, Brother M, who has trouble walking. He is a great guy and he misses church but his wife is showing signs of dementia and so she doesn't like going to church because she forgets the people she meets. But he planned on talking to the bishop about that and he said he was going to church. I hope he did because I know he would love it. We fasted for two meals for help in finding new people and investigators and so I hope the other Elders in Poco North have had success.
Thursday, we went and did service for Sister N. Instead of mowing her lawn we fixed some of her benches and painted some of her walkway for her. We brought a member with us and it was really fun. She loved it. Then we had weekly planning and went and taught D. D is an interesting investigator - he is Jewish and we basically answered the questions about verses that he had. Like how did they keep the Law of Moses in the wilderness and things like that. So he is super knowledgable in the scriptures but not really spiritual. He doesn't like emotion confirmations because he thinks that is all they are.
Then we met with R and asked him why he didn't think he was a church goer. We brought a member with us and it was an awesome lesson. It was great and I hope the other Elders get him baptized because he needs the church. Then we did some tracting and visited a member family and asked them how they found out the Book of Mormon was true and it was powerful. We asked them to keep on making new friends that they can share the gospel with. It was awesome to hear what families they are getting to know since they don't really know anyone outside of the church.
Friday, I went on exchanges with Elder P who is the District Leader and we were tracting and street contacting. It was fun and we ran into a potential investigator who said she might come to church so I hope that she did. It sounded really promising. I got picked up by Elder Flexhaug and Elder Smith and we went tracting in the city they were in I can't remember whether it was Richmond or Vancouver. So we were tracting and we ran into a potential family of investigators. They are Buddhist, but she wants to be taught with her husband and it was awesome.
Saturday, I hopped on the Greyhound and arrived in Kamloops at 1:30 pm and was picked up by the Elders and then Elder French and I went to Clearwater. Not going to lie, Clear water had a weird feeling to it and I don't know why. We tracted some streets and visited potential investigators but we didn't have any success.
Sunday, I felt really weird and I don't know why, but I was super uneasy and nervous and it wasn't because it is a new area. I just was. I was really on edge. Anyway, so we went to church and an investigator named M came. M has a baptismal date for the 17 of August and he was uncomfortable during church because the speakers kind of directed their talks at him. Later in the day he texted us that he wanted a week to think about what he has been taught, but that so far he still wants to come to church and be baptized.
Also, after a while of feeling uneasy we started tracting and slowly the feeling left. It was really weird because I was really freaked out, so I continually asked Heavenly Father to calm me down and get rid of those feelings and over time, he answered my prayers. I felt a lot better while we were tracting. Besides tracting, we contacted 3 referrals and we visited some potential investigators; 2 of them told us to come back another time. So hopefully they become new investigators. We ran into this one guy named Tyson and we basically gave him the First Lesson on his doorstep and we gave him a Book of Mormon and bore testimony of it but his family is against it. Hopefully he will read it and pray about it I feel like he will and that it will come to something.
This is what has been happening this week, I look forward to the lessons that we have with the investigators and potentials. I hope we gain some new investigators and that the ones we have will progress well.
I was so happy to get all your emails but unfortunately I don't have a lot of time right now sorry. I had computer trouble. I look forward to hearing from you all next week. I love you all and miss you.
Sincerely Anziano Luening
Well, I am finally in a mission field and it is awesome. I said goodbye to my district last night. It is kind of weird being out of the MTC, but I am getting used to it. I am in Poco North/Port Coquitlam and it seems like a hard area. I was forgotten about, as usual, ha-ha. I was told by the Assistant Presidents that they didn't know I was coming until noon, so they had two hours to get ready. They took me to Subway and that was so good after the MTC food. My companions didn't know I was coming and so when the Assistant Presidents called them, they rushed over here. They are some cool and funny Elders. Elder A and Elder H. Elder A has been out a while, but has only been in the area for 6 weeks and Elder H has been out 6 weeks and I actually was in the MTC before him, J. So, I was picked up from the airport and taken to our basement apartment which barely fits the two of them - but they had a great attitude about it. Elder H volunteered to sleep on the floor, however I told him I would - but he actually likes to sleep on the floor, ha-ha.
I forgot my camera at the MTC, so I won't be able to send pictures until next Monday. I arrived here in time to go to the Temple today for P-Day and it was awesome. Oh, so I had a my bad moment with TSA in Salt Lake. My backpack got taken aside after it was x-rayed and they asked if I had anything sharp and I was like, “Nope!” But when they searched it they pulled out my scissors and I was like I forgot I packed those but they said scissors were fine. BUT then they pulled out the Leatherman that Brother Wight got me and they confiscated that. It sucked, but the only way I could have kept it was to check my third bag and that would have been a lot of money. They were nice about it because they knew I was a missionary. I had originally packed it in my luggage with the scissors but to save weight I moved it to my backpack and forgot about the TSA rules. So, yeah. = (my bad).
I had an interview with the Mission President here and he told me that if I am diligent and obedient we will have 2 baptisms and he told my companions that we need to have 2 baptisms in the next 2 weeks. So I guess we are going to work hard. After I unpacked we knocked on doors and we were being rejected from everyone. I knocked on a door and my first door someone answered and she was a Jehovah's Witness and told us to come back. So we are going back on Monday. Elder Anderson told us that they are going to Bible bash us. She wanted her husband to be there so that is why she asked us to return. But yeah, not looking forward to that, but I hope Heavenly Father will bless us and they will actually listen and become interested. Anyways so we continued and then we saw a woman from Poland who has been in Canada for 5 years and so we talked to her and set up a return appointment. She didn't seem really interested but I think she will be after our lesson with her. We knocked on another door and there was a lady answered it and said 'Oh! Dinner guests!' Ha-ha! It was funny! She wasn't interested but she was really nice. We met a lady who was an ex Jehovah's Witness. She got burned by them really badly and she wasn't interested in religion at all. She had a stare that could pierce someone through a wall. She was nice but kind of curt, but that was because she thought we were Jehovah's Witness and once we told her we weren't, she was nicer to us. She still wasn't interested but we all felt like she would make a great Mormon, so I think we might go back. Another door we knocked on was a lady who only opened the door a crack and invited us to return before we could even ask. So I have good hopes for that. I think we will be tracting in new areas that these Elders haven't been tracting yet.
I haven't met the investigators that they have. I know a little about them, so these are their backgrounds. D is Jewish and might be a Rabbi, he is very smart with the Old Testament and Hebrew things. He doesn't believe Jesus is the Christ and he thinks Joseph Smith made up the Book of Mormon. He has read the Book of Mormon twice but we suspect the old Elders in this area didn't explain anything he read so he is still learning. I want him to gain a testimony of Jesus Christ so that he will know that an atonement has been made. It is really important that he gains faith in Christ and also in the Book of Mormon.
Another investigator is E. His background is that he believes in everything the missionaries taught him but he doesn't understand why priesthood is necessary. He told the missionaries that he would get baptized, but that he just thinks it is being dunked in the water. I think I will make sure he has read 2 Nephi 31 and explain it to him and the covenants we make and also why the priesthood is important.
There is another investigator - I think his name is S and he is a great investigator. It is just hard to meet with him and he works Sundays. Today was P-Day it has been pretty good. We bought groceries and food. I bought some GOUDA cheese! I am so excited to eat it. That is about all that has happened.
Mom and Dad I am glad you are having fun on your trip, You should pick up a German flag for me so I can bring it with me to Italy!
Elder Luening I am glad you are having a great time and I hope V just decides to take the leap of faith and pray, I hope your investigators continue to progress.
Sister Luening, What is this –you’re not emailing me. I hope your mission is going well and you are enjoying yourself.
Kassandra and Scott, Did you guys buy a place - I am so confused, but I am glad you like it. I hope you both continue to enjoy yourselves and make your home a spiritual place. I love you both.
Oma and Opa How are you both? I hope you are doing well. I miss you and pray for you both.
This is my report for the week.
Sincerely Anziano Luening
Hey! So this is the news - I am being reassigned to Vancouver! Surprise! I will be leaving Monday morning at 8:30 AM Utah time and will be in Arizona for an hour around 9-10 AM Arizona time. Mom and Dad if you happen to check your email and see this, send me a telephone number that I can reach you at. But if you can't it is all good. I am doing well now that I am leaving. I am excited and will finally be in a mission field! J
Have fun on your trip, Mom and Dad, I love you.
Love, Anziano Luening
Excerpts from Elder Luening’s testimony in one of his letters.
All is going well in the MTC. I will be heading to Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada for a temporary re-assignment. I will probably be there for 6 weeks then I will be going to Italy to spread the gospel there. This week I set a lot of goals for myself and the first few days I failed pretty bad at reaching them, but in the last four days I have gotten better at accomplishing them. I never accomplish all of them, but I am doing a lot better than I was before. Italian is coming along well; I am excited to be able to share the gospel in Italy. Even being told that I possibly could be leaving the MTC before 12 weeks is up got me really excited and happy to be able to do the Lord’s work. I know that if I go to Vancouver, it is for a reason and Heavenly Father has a plan for me. I look forward to finding out what His plan is. Right now I am just grateful to be able to spread the gospel.
There have been some ups and downs this past week. It has been a struggle remaining focused and understanding that God's plan is different than my plan. But the scriptures have helped me realize that. I was reading in Alma about the sons of Mosiah and their missions to the Lamanites. I was inspired by their faith and the fact that they were completely okay with whatever the Lord had in store for them. Then my thoughts turned to Job and how he lost everything - he lost friends, he lost family and he lost all that he owned but through it all he remained faithful.
It has helped me bounce back, and ever since I was told my foot has healed enough and was cleared by the doctor for the field, I have regained that fire for missionary work. I just need to make sure that I keep on feeding the fire with the scriptures, prayer, fasting, and the sacrament. I am really grateful for the sacrament and that we are able to renew our covenants that we make with the Lord. I am thankful that the sacrament was established by the Savior and that he told us the importance of it. I am so grateful that I have had the opportunity to feel of the Spirit in Church and to be able to learn the teachings of the Savior and the prophets. The joy that I receive from this gospel is too much for me to express. I will always know that this is the truth, for the Lord has told me through the Holy Ghost. I am grateful that through the ordinances of the temple and renewing our covenants we can be an eternal family. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father loves us and has prepared this for us.
Mathew 16:19, D+C 132:46. I am so grateful for the power of the priesthood and it truly is only able to be used to serve others and how great it is to have this power delegated to us.
I love you and miss you, but I am happy that we are in the gospel. I teach my teachers in the MTC as proxy investigators, and I have truly come to realize that the 5 steps to Heavenly Father and for eternal families are
1) Faith in Jesus Christ and his atonement
4) Receiving the Holy Ghost
5) Enduring to the End.
I have learned since being here, that after you receive the first 4 principles, it doesn't end. Enduring to the End includes keeping our Faith through scripture study, church attendance, and prayer and always Repenting of our short coming because we are not perfect. Baptism through partaking of the Sacrament, when we partake of the Sacrament, it is similar to being baptized because you renew the covenants. It is the main reason we go to church. Receiving the Holy Ghost - we are entitled to the Holy Ghost to be a constant companion but in this step we need to make sure that we remain worthy to have it as a companion. When we constantly go through the first four steps we are enduring to the end. I am so grateful that we have this gospel and the fullness thereof. I look forward to going to church in Germany when I visit. Just remember that families are forever and that I love you.
Love, Anziano Jeremy Luening
So, this past week has been a little rough around the edges. I am trying to get back into the groove of the MTC. I was just getting a little tired of being here for so long. But I am slowly getting back into the groove. I found that for every step backwards I take in regards to attitude and diligence, it is three times harder to get back to where I need to be. But I am gaining it back.
I have been reading my Patriarchal Blessing and my scriptures continually to find solace and comfort from them. It is all good! I am coming to terms with the fact that I will probably not be going to Italy for another 9 weeks. If I don't go to the Italian consulate this week, I will probably not be getting my visa in time for this group’s departure. If I get my visa then I will go, if I don't, I will wait. Whatever the outcome will be, I will serve the Lord. I will be teaching his children and be doing my purpose.
There was a devotional talk last night and it was really good. I was writing in my Journal and these words came to me as I was writing. "I need to do better, I can do better and I will do better". I am going to try to set daily goals every night. Today some of my goals were to write my talk for when I get to Italy, street contact 3 missionaries and bear my testimony in Italian, exercise, nap on P-day, email, study my blessing, and following it up with a search for the definitions of things in my blessing from the scriptures. So far today, I have exercised, napped, studied my blessing, studied the scriptures and am emailing now. When we go back to the residence I will contact an Elder and after dinner I will contact 2 more elders and study the scriptures some more.
This week was up and down with my attitude with being in the MTC. I was just so tired - physically and mentally. Physically because of having troubles falling asleep sometimes and also from not being able to play sports. When we go to the field it is hard because all the other Elders go and play soccer and I either get to sit and watch or read my scriptures, or I play a throwing game. I never realized that being able to burn energy playing sports is so good for my attitude. I played volleyball yesterday - I just couldn't sit and watch people play sports, so I played volleyball and it was so much fun. It helped my attitude that day so much. I was careful while I was playing so it was all good. But I know I can't play very much. I feel mentally drained because I'm not challenging myself enough with the language, I need to try harder. Also, I am just mentally tired of being in the MTC for so long, even though it is great.
I just need to gain that new attitude that I am trying to gain. I will do that by setting daily goals that I want to accomplish, my goals are going to be more geared to my purpose as a missionary. I will read my scriptures more frequently with a specific topic in mind, I will study the language; review things I have learned; study flash cards; and study new vocabulary for conversations with people. I will pray more regularly; I will read my patriarchal blessing every day along with my setting apart blessing and mission call letter. I will write a talk in Italian each week and street contact someone every day. Those are my goals to help me remain focused and get my good attitude back.
Other than that the week has been good. I have been getting more involved in the lessons with our investigators. Before I would let Anziano Trevino speak more because he is learning, but I need to be involved otherwise I get bored during the lessons. We taught Gianfranco about prophets, apostasy, restoration, and dispensations. It was a great lesson and he said he might get baptized, ha-ha. It isn't the best answer, but it is good. We also taught Sandra this last lesson we were building more trust with her and then she asked us who the head of the church is and she asked if we had a pope. We had already taught her about Joseph Smith's first vision, and so we told her that Jesus Christ is the head of the Church and the prophet receives revelation for the church and guides the church. We read her one of the articles of faith about the organization of the church, and told her just like when the Church of Christ was on the earth and established by Jesus Christ, we too have apostles and prophets. She asked us if we pray to Joseph Smith and we told her No! We told her we pray to Christ, we believe in Christ and that it is through Jesus Christ we are cleansed from sin and return to God. Joseph Smith was a prophet and restored the church with the power and authority of God. It was great - the spirit was strong, and I think in the next lesson we are teaching the Plan of Salvation.
On Sunday I learned a lesson that was kind of interesting. We were going back to class after Sacrament and there was a baby bird that had fallen from its nest. Its nest was difficult to get to but we tried for a while to get the bird back into the nest without touching it with our hands. We finally succeeded after a while and then 5 minutes later we were leaving the building and the bird had fallen again out of its nest. I was thinking, “You stupid bird don't you know that you are hurting yourself. Don't you know that when you leave the nest you are going to fall?” A thought popped into my head and it was that sometimes people are the bird and Heavenly Father tells us “Come on you know that you are hurting yourself! Don't you know that when you do that you are going to fall?” But he always loves us and helps us return to him and return to the safety of his nest. It was just something cool I wanted to share.
The devotionals have been really good. I watched ‘The Characters Of Christ’ by Elder Bednar, again this past Sunday. We listened to a really good speaker this Tuesday who talked about remembering to always ask yourself, “What would a real Missionary do?” So that is something I have been doing.
Charlene is doing well. She is sad that all of their Elders left but she is excited. I am happy I get to see her every day. It is awesome being able to talk to her about her day and see how much she enjoys it.
I hope all continues to go well with you all! I look forward to hearing from you next week. I look forward to knowing how you all have been and it always hits me on Monday, ha-ha. Dad when is you trip? Kassandra and Scott what have you been up to? Chris, hope you are having a great time in Germany and in your area. That is so cool that Easong is getting baptized on the 21st. I look forward to hearing from you next week.
Sincerely, Anziano Luening
I loved your emails, or the lack of them, ha-ha! J It's all good - I know that you two are busy. So this week has been kind of a blur. I have had some awesome lessons with our investigator Gianfranco. We taught him the restoration and gave him an overview of the Plan of Salvation. We asked him what he had questions about and wanted to know more about and he said the three kingdoms so that will be our next lesson.
I was able to meet our new Mission President and his wife. He is super cool and seems like he is going to be a “follow the rules to a T” President, which will be awesome.
So, yeah, I will be in the MTC until July 23 and soon after I get those papers for my visa, the Church will send me to Vancouver to get my Visa finished and back to the MTC I go, ha-ha. I am all good! I am learning to look at these challenges with an 'all is well' attitude. I know that the Lord knows what he is doing, and who am I to question what he does and how he does it.
Every time I look back at what I have asked for while being in the MTC, I see that he has given me the things that are the most important to me. For example, I have always wanted to be a German Citizen and now I know that I am; I wanted to stay in the MTC and remain a missionary instead of being sent home for recovery, and now I am; I wanted to see Charlene in the MTC, and now I do every day at breakfast; I wanted my foot to heal and not need the surgery and a miracle happened and it has healed quite a bit; and I wanted most of all to be able to know the needs of the investigators and be able to address them and resolve their concerns and thus far for the most part I have been able to. The Lord knows what is important to us and if it is expedient for him or wise for his purpose to grant it to us, he will. I really appreciate that Heavenly Father hears prayers and I look forward to the continuing experiences in the MTC.
How has life been? What have you been up to? I understand how busy you both are with your callings. I hope you send me some dear elders about how your week was.
Love you all and hope all continues to go well.
Love, Anziano Luening
P.S. In case you don't know already Charlene Luening's mailing info is: Box # 122 MO-INDE departure date 0710
Here is the update.
I will be in the MTC until the 23 of July. I need you to get/send me ASAP a Notarized Priesthood Ordination Certificate, also 3 statements 1) Scotia Bank Statement 2) Your Bank Statement 3) Dundee Wealth Statement. All those statements need to be going back 3 months. This is to prove that I am financially supported during my stay. I need to get these as soon as possible. I will be staying in the MTC and when my visa comes I will be flying to Vancouver getting my Visa and coming back to the MTC. Then I will be flying out of the MTC with this group of Italians. I will get to call you and update you later - sometime, I don't know when yet.
Love Anziano Luening
So, this is what happened: Another group of Italian Elders had a foam soccer ball the size of a softball so we were playing mini soccer in the Residence in the hallway. I kicked the wall a couple times by accident and then I went to send the ball to the end of the hall, but an elder got his foot in front of the ball and so I kicked his foot. My pinky toe caught on his foot and yanked it to the side and so it is fractured. The fracture is in the foot and is like diagonal so the reason why the surgery is necessary is because if I leave it, it will not heal properly or at all. The doctor told me it would take 3 months to recover if I leave it, or I can get a pin put in from the top of my pinky toe into the meticarpal bone to keep it straight. It will heal normal and it will take 6-8 weeks to heal. The surgery is happening on next Wednesday. I have follow up appointments for two weeks after the surgery. So, I will be home in 3 weeks. It's all good - I will be skyping with my MTC teachers and continue to obey the mission rules as best as I can. Also I will study lots of Italian words and make lesson plans in Italian. So I have that planned out and so I will be home for 3-5 weeks.
I tried to use my debit card to pay for some medical things and it didn't work. I need to pay $20 for this weird shoe that I am wearing and I need to pay $10 for strong painkillers for after the surgery. So I need help figuring out how my debit card works.
The Romanian districts left for Romania on Monday and so we all said good-bye. Also, the rest of the Italians left yesterday in the morning, so I sad good-bye to them on Monday night. I am the only Italian left in the MTC until the new Italian missionaries come in today. I have temporary companions who are learning Spanish. They are awesome! They have only been here for two weeks and I will be with Italians later today.
This week has been good. The crutches are killing my shoulders but oh well. I will be on bed rest for three days after the surgery.
The teachers guessed where our first area would be and we got to take pictures with them. Also on Sunday we took a picture of our whole zone and I was surprised - it is a lot bigger than I thought.
I don't really know what else to right nothing much has happened. I am glad you are all having fun and hope that you enjoy yourselves. I have a question: - when is your vacation to Europe because I have the surgery on the 19th and six weeks later is the 31 of July so I will be able to leave on July 31 or August 14. It all depends on if the doctor in Canada clears me or not.
I will see Charlene in the MTC, I guess and my birthday will be in the MTC as well.
Anyways, that’s about it. I miss you all and will see you soon. I hope all continues to be good.
P.S. I will send pictures later today
So, I have some statistics for you! There are 44 Italian missionaries: 20 missionaries are going to Rome and 24 are going to Milan. Also there are 13 Romanian Missionaries with 2 sisters. Today 940 missionaries arrived at the MTC - 442 of them are sister missionaries! J
This week has been pretty good. The days have pretty much blended together. I found out today that after the other Italian missionaries leave I will be in the MTC for an extra week to be reassigned and then I will probably be going to the Vancouver mission for six weeks.
A group of Italian elders left their door open all day so Elder Berg and I rearranged their beds, ha-ha! It was pretty good. J
I learned a lot of things this week. We had two great lessons yesterday. The first one was with Angela and we taught her about some of the commandments and asked her if Heavenly Father had answered her prayer yet. She said she would keep the commandments and that Heavenly Father had answered her prayers. I asked her if she would choose a baptismal date in June and so she is going to tell us the date next lesson. The spirit was so strong! We were planning on teaching her the law of chastity but when asking her about her family some more, we realized it wasn't as necessary as we thought for this lesson.
Our second lesson was with Giosue. We planned on teaching him obedience, to pray often, scripture study, baptismal covenants, and obey and honour the law. I tied in obedience and prayer and scripture study into Lehi's vision. I said that the iron rod is the word of God; the straight and narrow path is obedience to the commandments of God and to the word of God; the tree of life is the love of God, and the mist of darkness is temptation and apostasy. It was a great lesson! I had him read 1 Nephi 11:25 and 1 Nephi 8:23. I had drawn the vision as well and labeled it so he would stay interested in the lesson. During the lesson we somehow had time to teach him the ten commandments as well. It was more of a reminder for Giosue because he knew those commandments pretty well. We taught him the baptismal covenants because I wanted to make sure he knew what he and the Lord were promising each other. We taught all of the things we planned and the ten commandments. He committed to obeying the commandments we taught him and I asked him if he received an answer to his prayer. He said that he had and that he wanted to be baptized! It was awesome. I asked him to pick a date in June and he said he would look at his calendar and pick a date towards the end of June.
Also we were investigators for the “Sorelle” yesterday as they taught us the second lesson. The spirit was so strong in that lesson and I could feel the love of God so strong. I learned a lot of things from being in an investigator’s shoes. That’s about all that happened this week. We learned a lot of things in the week but that’s everything really exciting that happened. President Callister of the Presidency of the Seventy spoke this Tuesday and he basically proved with scriptures from the Bible that we have the same organization, ordinances, and fruits as the primitive church.
Life has been dece. I decided I will impress/ freak out the new Italian missionaries when they come by speaking as much Italian as I can, ha-ha!
I am glad all is well with all of you. It sucks that you had to drive all over the place this past week but I am glad that all is well and Charlene is getting everything done.
I was sick again this week, I had a cold again but it is gone now and let’s hope that I don't get sick again in the MTC. I had my first haircut here and it turned out pretty good. Anyways that’s about all that has happened in my week so far. I look forward to hearing from you next week or during the week.
PS I did get the packages thanks they were delicious.
Buongiorno, Mia Famiglia e Amici
This past week has been interesting. The days have not been that exciting until I found out my Visa was being delayed. I am happy to know now that I might be a citizen of Germany even though I will still be temporarily reassigned to Vancouver for 6 weeks to get my visa. I am happy that you were very diligent in finding out information about German citizenship, Dad and letting me know as soon as you could. I will talk to the travel office more about it just so I know all the details and everything.
I became sick again. I asked a doctor who is in the District Presidency what it had. I had been coughing a lot and as I would cough I would end up throwing up. They told me it was probably Pertussis or whooping cough, but it is almost completely gone now. I have not thrown up in 3 days so life is getting better. I gave Anziano Roe the cough; he is not throwing up but has the cough now. He in turn, gave me a cold and congestion. Ha-ha, I think I got the better deal.
Since being in the MTC we have learned: Present tense, Future tense, Conditional tense, Future Conditional tense, Past Tense, Conversational Past Tense, and Imperfect Past Tense. We have learned to simplify the missionary lessons and each week we talk about how before our missions and now in the MTC we believe/believed that we could easily teach in English, and that one of the reasons for missionaries to get sent to Europe or learn another language is for the Lord to teach them humility.
Speaking of lessons we taught Giosue yesterday and planned to reteach him about apostasy, prophets, and why the restoration and Book of Mormon are necessary. We planned this lesson because in the last lesson we asked him to be baptized, and he said “no” because apparently he had lied about praying about whether Joseph Smith was a prophet and the Book of Mormon was true. I think Fratello Cena got confused as to who he was because Giosue had told us he knew the church was true. Also when we taught him about baptism, apparently he was baptized when he was ten years old by immersion with the 'proper' priesthood authority. I was so frustrated. It was a curveball I didn't want. But we finally learned what his concern is and are dealing with it during the next lesson.
Also, Angela, when we asked her to be baptized, said “No”, so we asked “When you know the church is true, will you be baptized?”, and she said “Yes”. But we don't know what to teach her, so next lesson we will find out if she has any concerns.
Susana has made good progress, though. We taught her the third lesson and asked her to be baptized and she said, “Yes”. So that was good. We will be teaching her the commandments in the next lesson.
On Sunday I took the time to sleep a lot and recover from my whooping cough - so I got 8 hours of sleep spread throughout the day. That night I had the worst sleep I ever had. I was so tired and I was exhausted but no matter what I tried I couldn’t fall asleep.
I read the letter from the secretary. Not much has happened here. P-Day has been pretty relaxed; I will send some pictures. I miss you guys and you Chris. I hope E. gets baptized. You could always share Mosiah 18:10 with him, "Now I say unto you, if this be the desire of your hearts, what have you against being baptized in the name of the Lord, as a witness before him that ye have entered into a covenant with him, that ye will serve him and keep his commandments, that he may pour out his Spirit more abundantly upon you?" I don't know, it's up to you. Even though we only role play in the MTC, I already feel disappointment and sadness as the investigators don't accept baptism, or don't progress. I know that it will be harder in the field but I just hope they will listen, J.
Yesterday, Anziano B. and I became investigators for Sorella K. and Sorella C.. and they said a something to me and the spirit touched my heart. I hope I will teach like that.
So, usually on Monday we teach members in the Training Resource Center. But on Tuesday we had TRC and we were the first Italian missionaries to teach Members IN Italy via skype. But me and Anziano Berg were the first Italian missionaries to teach a Non-member IN Italy via skype. It was awesome. We taught her about prayer and the Holy Ghost. She has met with the missionaries before and had a Book of Mormon. She is really good friends with one of the teachers. It was awesome! She was way nice and she lives in Venice!
Anyways that's about it. Don't worry - I am not bothered that I will be reassigned to Vancouver for 6 weeks. I hope I still become a German citizen though. That would be way cool.
Love, Anziano Luening
Note: Jeremy was informed that to get his Italian Visa, he needs to present himself at the Italian consulate in the country of his residence at the the time of the application – Canada! If he could prove his German citizenship, missionary travel thought it might speed things up. Regulations have changed since we left Germany and now he is allowed and automatically has dual citizenship.