Taranto Zone Fire Department

Ciao tutti!

Sorry this is a week late. I wasn’t able to get it out on the WiFi in time. Ma vabe. Non fa niente. (i say that all the time because my companion says it, and for those of you Italian muggles that pretty much means “whatever, doesn’t change anything”)

This week went by really quick. I started off on a scambio (exchange) with our district leader. I spent a few days in Crotone and did some finding there with Anziano Pineau, an Anziano about 6 months from the end of his mission. He is actually training my MTC companion Anziano Lamoureux. Crotone has a pretty sick beach and also a Seria A calcio team so they have this huge soccer stadium for that. We actually found a couple of people for them to teach right after we got off the bus, so that’s pretty cool.

We a are making progress with one of our investigators. We have now taught him all the lessons, but all that he needs to do now to get baptized is stop smoking. He is down from 8 cigarettes a day to 4, so hopefully he will keep following our plan for him to stop. Also yesterday in church we had 7 investigators. Six of them were Africans again because they love coming every week. Two of them are looking really ready for baptism. I am so excited for them! In the following weeks we could see some baptisms here in Cosenza!

In other news a crazy fire started in the middle of Cosenza. There was smoke and ash everywhere. Luckily it was in a pretty well enclosed lot filled with bamboo, so nothing important got burned. However, this lot also happens to be in the middle of the city right off of the biggest city street, so it was pretty whack to see all the smoke in and ash in the middle of our city.

Finally, this week for P-day we did some zone volleyball in Taranto because we have Zone conference this week. It was pretty fun. I’m excited for Zone conference as well. We’ve got a pretty dope zone.

Anyways, sorry this was so late.

OK, now for this week. We started off with Zone Conference which was pretty dank. We talked about the importance of using “Preach My Gospel” as a guide for our missionary work as well as other small things we can do to better ourselves as missionaries, but the cool part is what came after. A field fire started right outside our church. It burned close enough that we had to run outside and fight it with buckets of water to keep it from catching the church grounds on fire. We did a pretty good job of it until the firefighters finally got there to put it out, but then after they left the fire started up again in a spot that wasn’t completely out. We actually put that one out ourselves, but then another spot lit up from further away that came in and literally burned right up to the fence before we noticed, so we had to rush out and stop it from burning onto the super dry church field. Eventually the firefighters returned and finished that fire off, but then about an hour later after we had all been inside cooling down the fire started again on the other side of the church. Luckily it was all taken care of and the church grounds were barely touched by the fire. We definitely were blessed to be able to keep the fire from burning any of the church grounds.

The rest of that day was spent on a 4 hour bus ride from Taranto to Cosenza. The following day we had some lessons. One with our 3 African investigators on date and the other with our Philippino investigator. The lesson with the Africans went really well, but our other lesson wasn’t so great. We have been working really hard to get our Philippino investigator to stop smoking, but he doesn’t really have a real desire to. We decided to go bold and call him out for not stopping and not following our smoking plan for him. We also asked him if he would be willing to stop if Jesus was asking him instead of us and he still wasn’t sure. Sadly, the next night he dropped us, so he will not be getting baptized. Also our Italian investigator’s father is struggling with cancer, so she had to miss church, so she is off date too, but hopefully we can get her back on for a few weeks out.

The works been a bit tougher of late, but it is still amazing. I’m learning so much and I love being able to share the gospel and see the happiness and purpose it brings to people’s lives even if they don’t get baptized.

La mia testimonianza è che Dio è il nostro Padre in cielo. Lui ci ama, e Lui ci ha dato il Suo figlio, Gesù Cristo, per salvarci e mostrarci come mai possiamo tornare a vivere nel Regno di Dio. Con Dio possiamo diventare qualsiasi cosa che Lui vuole che diventiamo. L’altro giorno la mia zona, noi eravamo vigili del fuoco. Era un po’ pazzo! Però per questi due anni Lui vuole che Io sia un missionario. Io so che Dio prepara le persone che chiama. Dobbiamo essere pronti per la chiamata.

1 Nefi 3:7, “E avvenne che io, Nefi, dissi a mio padre: Andrò e farò le cose che il Signore ha comandato, poiché so che il Signore non dà alcun comandamento ai figlioli degli uomini senza preparare loro una via affinché possano compiere quello che egli comanda loro.”

Vi voglio bene,
Anziano Findlay

  1. The longest word in the Italian dictionary
  2. The Great Cosenza Fire
  3. Zone volleyball
  4. The Great Taranto Fire (I don’t have the cool firefighting action pics, so I’ll send those next week)
  5. The TZFD

2 thoughts on “Taranto Zone Fire Department

  1. Hola oh ancient one,It seems you are increasing in your wisdom as the ancients do ;). Wow, 2 fires in 2 weeks. You are certainly gaining wisdom in fire fighting. You guys are hot stuff! So what does that very long word mean? As for me, my life is moving along nicely, which I consider a blessing. Last week I had 2 very wonderful experiences while serving in the temple. I subbed for a lady on Tuesday, so no one there knew me at all – except the Lord. I was “randomly” put in initiatory at 8:00 (am) and no patrons showed up for about 10 minutes. Then a sister about my age came in, but she was having a hard time explaining what she needed. finally she said something we all understood, “Espanol.” I thought, “Hummm, I wonder if I can remember enough Spanish to help her. I tried and was able to help – she wanted to do initiatory until 9:30, at which time she needed to leave to do the 10:00 endowment session. They gave her an ordinance card in Spanish so she could follow along in Spanish while we performed them in English. As I wanked into the booth with her, it occurred to me that I should find out if it was OK to see if I could read the Spanish card so she could receive the ordinance in English. I was told yes, so I began to read it to her. I did fairly well, though there were words I had never before heard in Spanish, like the word for “marrow.” The sister was so appreciative to be able to hear the ordinance in Spanish. She was visiting from Chile, and had been coming to the temple all day (7:30 am to 6:00), 3 days every week for 4 weeks while staying with her son. He dropped her off on the way to work and picked her up on his way home. By the 3rd time I read the ordinance to her I was totally fluent, maybe even better than when I was actually in Chile, and the spirit was so powerfully strong, that I knew it the gift of tongues taking over my tongue as it had several times on my mission. The Lord was truly blessing her for her diligence and participation in temple work. After initiatory, she planned to go on a session, and I was already assigned to that session as a follower, and I was able to present her at the veil in Spanish. After the session, my shift was over, so I went into the celestial room to see if I could help her any more. She said she was going to lunch in the cafeteria, and that is where I was heading as well. We ate together, and were able to build a friendship, even though my Spanish was back to normal – as in not fluent. On Thursday she was planning to come back again, and that is the day I normally work. I told her I wouldn’t be able to help her in initiatory on Thursday because I am a trainer. However, on Thursday the person I need to help train was sick, so I was able to help her in initiatory again. Again, I was assigned to serve as follower on the 10:00 session, so I was able to present her at the veil again. These were 2 wonderful days where I felt the spirit with me so strongly as I was able to perform all these ordinances in Spanish after so many years of not speaking it. I am sure you now what I mean, as i am certain there have been times in your experiences in Italy where you have been given the gift to know what to say and how to say it. May you continue on in your dedicated manner, as that is the way we have the great spiritual experiences.Love, Grandma dP


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