Monday, October 12, 2015

Week 5 in Palermo

Esteemed friends and colleagues...
Nah;) Hey guys! Once again a wonderful week in Palermo:) We ate lunch on the stairs with a demon cat, searched in vain for a pharmacy, Diana was confirmed, and Karina went to church with us!

On Monday my companion and I had a family home evening with Karina in Hermana Saverry's house:) It could not have gone better! We taught her about the Plan of Salvation. Hermana Saverry was the perfect member, sharing her testimony and bringing the spirit. Karina really felt at home with her and they developed a lasting friendship from the first. What a blessing to have members to help us in this work! Without them we wouldn't even have found Karina to begin teaching her. She was a referral from a member, and after contacting her with a member, here we were having family home evening in the house of a member. Members are truly the key to missionary work! Couldn't work without them. 

On Tuesday my comp and I headed off to the District meeting in the rain:) We were greeted by facturas and juice: Breakfast! One of the main topics was the importance of teaching about the Sabbath day and keeping it holy. Our leaders stressed the importance of explaining the entire Sabbath day, and not just taking the sacrament. As they were teaching and explaining, and as my companion and I did a practice in front of the district, I thought of my own Sabbath day attendance and what I can do to improve.
We had lunch with Tamara, an RM, next:) She had welcomed us in to the house and we were able to sit down when the phone rang. She answered it, and then quickly ushered us down into the stairwell. She works for a Jewish lady, and her son was coming, someone known for picking on and bullying missionaries. Tamara, being the wonderful person she is, didn't want us to suffer unjustly, and so we sat down on the stairs and waited to see if the son was going to stay or if he was just popping in to say hi. Turns out he planned on staying... so my comp and I sat on the stairs while Tamara snuck out of the room and brought us our food. Talk about crazy! As we ate on the stairs every little noise put me on edge, because I thought we were going to get kicked out of the building for being missionaries!

However, lunch went smoothly, besides the company of a demonic cat that kept trying to eat through the door to get to us. It kept howling and scratching at the door... how pleasant;) 
It was truly the most interesting lunch I've had during my time in the mission, and it made me think a lot of what those before us had to pass through for their religion. All of the persecution, especially the pioneers, to allow us the religious freedom and privileges we enjoy so freely. Something to think about:)
Photos from my current area

On Wednesday I woke up without a voice! I tried to talk with my companion during companionship study, but it was a bit of a joke.... In the morning we went off in search of a pharmacy, because I needed a refill on a face medication. I think we visited 15 pharmacies and walked 20 blocks, but didn't find one that could fill my prescription. Every pharmacy said something different! Some claimed that I needed a new RX because mine was old, others said nothing about the age of the RX but said that the formula for the medication was incomplete. Many didn't do compounds at all. As we went from pharmacy to pharmacy I couldn't help but relate it to Joseph Smith and his search for the true church. Every one had something different to say, and each claimed to have the truth, but couldn't fill his needs. Like Joseph, the pharmacy was not to be found on earth at this time... and so I'll just have to be thankful that I have the restored gospel, even if I don't have the "restored pharmacy". 

We also visited Karina that night! We taught her the gospel of Jesus Christ:) She was a little unsure about her baptismal date on the 18th, as she was beginning to feel opposition from family and friends. As she shared her feelings I shared the experience I'd had with my college plans. How I had thought that going to school in January would be too soon, but that I knew that I had to follow the spirit, even if I didn't know how everything was going to work out. I know this was an experience given to me from Father to help others facing similar trials.
The mission president prayed and fasted about whether I would be a sister leader or train again at this next transfer. He felt inspired that I would train again and so that night I learned that I would be training... for the fourth time!! I'm very excited about this opportunity.  It's a calling I LOVE!  Someone is waiting for me!

On Thursday, after the training meeting in San Fernando, my comp and I headed back to the pension to cook, as our lunch had fallen through. We made french toast;) From that moment every plan and appointment we had fell through. Our member canceled on us, and every single appointment. My companion even lost her sube, the card we use to take public transportation, and as a result all of the money we had just put on it... it was a rough day, but regardless of the struggles we were able to go through it with a smile. Amazingly enough, I was patient and calm, even as everything seemed to be going very wrong. Before, at the beginning of the mission, I would have been extremely impatient. Stressed out. Worried. But I was calm. It was truly a miracle:) 

On Friday we made up for the pain of Thursday by asking for referrals, visiting recent converts, as well as Daiana and Karina! We taught Karina the word of wisdom. She didn't know if she was going to be able to live it, but Hermana Saverry was able to share a powerful testimony of God's power, and that Nothing is impossible for Him. She is so wonderful and I don't know what we would do without her! 

Saturday we found Becky;) Which is to say that Hermana Bustos lost her llama pen, and we got her a new one, sneakily taping it to the door;) She really liked the surprise!

On Sunday Daiana was confirmed! Karina also came to church:) 

It was truly a great week! 

Love you guys, take care!
Hermana Dickson

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