Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I Want for Every Young Man to Serve a Mission

Hey! This week has been another good one! We set another baptismal date with a kid from Romania. He is really great and we are excited for him to see the blessings of the restored gospel in his life! He is very excited about baptism and can't stop asking questions about it. Other than that we have just continued to teach our investigators and overall it has been a pretty average week. Although I did get my first interview with President Kelly! He is so great! He invited us to come to the villa to do the interview because he didn't have time to get us at zone conference and since we live pretty close we just took the bus to the villa for a great interview and then some amazing tomato soup and gelato! So those are probably the highlights of the week. I can't believe that our transfer calls are coming in next week! This transfer feels like it just started! So we will see what happens on Saturday! Oh yeah I forgot to ask you if you heard about the riots the week before this one. It was pretty crazy we could hear alot of crazy stuff happening and we weren't allowed to go in the center of Roma. I guess people were lighting the carbinieri cars on fire and things got pretty out of hand. Italians are very lively and sometimes don't have very much patience. Last week after zone conference we did scambi and I went to Ostia with Anziano Larcher! It is really pretty there and the people are very nice! Then we got to go over to the house of the Sorelle and help them clean up their basement that flooded because of a big rainstorm that came through the night before. Later that night we went to an investigators house from the Philipines and they cooked us some really good Philipino cibo! I would call it an overall good successful scambi! !Thank you for your tesimony! I am so greatful to be able to serve a mission! It has been the Best, Worst, Happiest, Saddest, Funnest, Boringest thing I have ever done in my life but I have never felt the Saviors love for me stronger and carrying me through these hard times. I have felt through those hard times even a stronger desire that others come unto Christ and I want for every young man to serve a mission. It is a blessing commanded by God! How great is our Heavenly Father that he would command us to recieve blessings! I love this Church and am so grateful that I have had the opportunity to serve in a country that has so much of the gospel of Jesus Christ in it, But you can just tell there are things missing. The Spirit isn't the same in those big cathedrals. There is a huge difference between a huge nice building that makes you feel good inside and a temple that has been set apart as the house of the Lord and always has the Spirit present! I am so greatful for all of the things I have seen and learned here! I am glad to hear about all the fun Halloween and Birthday parties that are happening back home! Hope everything is going good with everyone! How is all the planning going for the wedding? What day are they planning on? Anyway I think that this week we are going to take it easy and just walk through Rome a bit. I hope that you all have a great week! Thank you so much for everything and love you tons!!!  You're always in my prayers. Vi voglio bene!!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Lunch with Americans

Hey! I'm sad to hear that the pictures were stolen! Luckily I haven't deleted any of them yet! But the other missionaries do the same thing as me and send them home in a envelope but alot of them buy a hard drive out here, for like 40 euro and it has space to save all of your pictures through out your whole mission so maybe I should buy one of those. If you put a little of that money on my card I could buy one but whatever you think is best. I hope that I can get them to you some how. Maybe I will just have to put pictures of Jesus and Mary on the next one and they wont touch it. I'm glad to here that your talk went good! We have such a great ward! I love all the members back home! I'm glad to hear you heard from that family! They were so nice! We were talking to this guy from Russia and they walked buy and said "Hey Elders!", and then we finished and it was time for lunch so we ran across the street and talked to them and they were so kind they bought us suppli and gelato! They were really fun to talk to and hang out with for a bit! The work this week has been nice and things are starting to pick up a bit so we are teaching more and doing less finding. I hope that It continues to pick up. The ward is still great here! They are always inviting us over for dinner! Oh yeah last Saturday the bishop called us and asked if we could give a ten minute talk in sacrament meeting about The Book of Mormon the next day. That was terrifying but I survived and deliverd my first church talk in Italian with out passing out! So things here are going good! That is cool that the Dornys are coming out! They are such a nice family! Thanks for all that you do and I hope we can find a better way to get pictures back and forth without having some one steal them! LoVe YoU tOnS CiAo!!!

Letter from Members Vacationing in Rome

We received this letter yesterday from some members who were visiting Rome.  We were so grateful that they took not only the time to take Caleb and his companion to lunch but also that they would send such a sweet message to us.  It made me cry (happy tears) when we read it!!!!

Dear Brother and Sister Larsen,

My family was travelling through Italy last week and made a stop in Rome.  While walking on the Piazza, we stumbled across your son with his companion, Elder Wright.  We were excited to see missionaries and spent time with them for lunch and later gelato.  We were able to meet the sister missionaries as well.  Your son was very thoughtful as he had invited the sisters for gelato because it was one of their birthdays.  Your son is a great missionary and works hard.  We had some good conversations about the work in Italy and it rolls along with the help of these fine boys.  Our oldest son just returned from Barranquilla, Colombia and our second currently serves in Asuncion, Paraguay, so our family loves seeing missionaries.  My wife and I just wanted to say that we enjoyed meeting your son and from the looks of his shoes, he is working hard.  You should be very proud of him


Brother David J. Barazoto
Gilbert, Arizona Val Vista Stake

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Lot's of Finding

Ciao!! How is everything going back at home? Things are good here! It's starting to get colder so it's been kind of a nice change. We also lost some investigators :( One is moving back to Romania and another one won't answer her phone after we gave her the baptismal invite, and then a bunch of them are just really busy with work and can't meet with us for awhile... So this week we have just been doing finding. It is so much fun but very tiring and hard. Romans are great but it is really hard to get them to stop and talk to you. So we have been trying lots of different approaches and questions but the silver bullet just doesn't exist. We did get a few new investigators from talking to them on the bus so we are hoping things will turn out good with them. Other than that things have been great. The ward is still great and very nice. Next week in church we are going to try to get 20 referalls from the members. We are hoping that the ward will be our way out of all this finding. It's good to hear about all the catching up on friends stuff. I met the Anziano going to Milan in the mtc that is from Edwin and Karens ward. He is really nice! The pizza here is great, but they say it's the best in Napoli. We have this pastry shop below our church and it is so good! The sell cornetti for 50 cents and they are filled with chocolate and they are amazing! Wow Dad that's awesome! Keep up the good work! As hard as I try, I can't seem to put on weight! But I guess Italians eat heavier in the winter so hopefully I can too! Anyways thanks for all you guys do! I love you tons!! Did you guys get the pictures I sent?! Hope you did! CIAO!!!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Picking Grapes in the Vineyard

Ciao!! This week has been great!! Conference was great and there were so many good talks! I really liked the talk given by Elder Eyring as well. It is sometimes hard for me to decide to continue talking to everyone on the bus and on the metro after a whole day of talking to everyone you walk past on the street and avoid the pressing thoughts of justifing not doing it because of your efforts throughout the day, but it is just better to push through the justification and know that there is someone on the bus or metro that is going to give a listening ear to this great message. At first it was really hard, seeing that everyone stares at you and some people laugh, but Hey I only have two years of my life to have fun experiences like this. It is always just better to stand up for what you believe in and share it with everyone. We have been doing a lot of finding and have found a lot of great people! Every day has been really great but yesterday was probably one of the best! We got to go over to a families house with the Sorrelle and teach there daughter, who is getting ready for baptism, and eat with them! Then we got to make wine! haha It was pretty cool! Who would ever guess that I would do that on my mission! We spent almost all day picking the grapes in the vineyard which were Delicious! Then we hauled them back to the house put them in big buckets and had to throw them into a bunch of crazy, wine making machines and the wine was ready to be bottled and aged or whatever you do with wine. But it was so much fun and we took a lot of pictures so I will try to send those off today. This ward is so great and they are really good at working together with us and helping us with everything. They are really great! Last preparation day we went around and saw a lot of the old churches in Rome. Some were up to a hundred years after Christs death. It is great stuff to see and you can see that simple doctrines have been lost in the changing of time. Today we are going to a cool place called Tivoli where there are lots of cool fountains and other things I guess. Well I better run so I can hurry and download the pictures on to the USB drive! Love you tons!!!