Main Menu

Cosenza – Week 5
Transfer 9, Mission Week 59

Ciao tutti!

I hope that everyone is doing well!! This week was really good and we were able to see a lot of really cool miracles throughout the week with what we had going on. I am sorry I don’t have a ton of time to write this email today. I lost a little bit of time with email this week.

We weren’t able to see a ton of our investigators this week, but we were able to have a lot of good lessons and that went really well. We were street finding and this guy next to us was walking right by us so we started talking and had a really good conversation with him, but we wasn’t too interested to hear what we had to say, since he was pretty firm in the things that he believed. At the end though we asked him if he would be interested to meet so that we could just share the message with him and then leave it up to him to find out its truthfulness. He said I would but you guys would have to come to me first. So we said yes right away and were able to go to a Catholic mass this week. It went well and then we had a lesson with him a few days after. It was super cool to see that it all worked out like that.

We had a member that wanted us to meet these two friends of hers so we were able to go over to her house and have a short lesson with her and then dinner, but it was a super cool miracle. The member was explaining these people to us and the fact that one of them was from Romania and such and that they were super cool. Well they were late but when they showed up I immediately recognized him. He was a guy we talked to on the street the previous Sunday with the same lady. It was super cool to see how the Lord works and was with us that evening as we explained about who we are and the Book of Mormon. It was super cool and we will be looking forward to getting to see them in the future. They are super nice and just genuine people. Another miracle was last night at our Geso we were able to see a group of kids about our age walking and we were doing a little survey and they stopped and were super interested in what we were saying. I was able to share the restoration with them and they were super interested and want to learn more. We had met one of these girls early when putting up posters for English Course during the week. These two sisters gave us their numbers and want to learn more and are smart girls so we hope that all goes well. We also had another ex-investigator move back recently so we picked her up again and she is super cool and really smart as well. We hope that all goes well with the work that is growing right now.

I gave a talk this Sunday and was able to base it off a talk from General Conference. I chose the one by President Stephen W. Owen and he talked about leadership and I really like the topic of this talk. I love this quote.

If I were to ask you, “Who is the greatest leader who ever lived?”–what would you say? The answer, of course, is Jesus Christ.  He sets the perfect example of every imaginable leadership quality.

But what if I were to ask you, “Who is the greatest follower who ever lived?”–wouldn’t the answer again be Jesus Christ? He is the greatest leader because He is the greatest follower–He follows His Father perfectly, in all things.

The world teaches that leaders must be mighty; the Lord teaches that they must be meek. Worldly leaders gain power and influence through their talent, skill, and wealth. Christlike leaders gain power and influence “by persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned.”

In God’s eyes, the greatest leaders have always been the greatest followers.

I really love this a lot and I know that we can all be examples to those around us as we follow our Savior and our Heavenly Father in the things that they ask us to do. I invite you to read that talk if you have the time and then search for ways this week that you can lead through following Them. I know that these examples don’t go unnoticed and others have helped me draw closer to Them as I have seen their dedication to Them. I know that each one of us can lead in whatever setting we may find ourselves. I love you all very much and hope that you all have an amazing week!


Anziano Garrett

[Editor’s note:  This week Taylor forwarded to us a copy of Anziano Rasband’s last weekly letter (he goes home next week), which Anziano Rasband sent Taylor a copy of.  Taylor and Anziano Rasband were companions for 3 transfers in Rome 1.  Anziano Rasband finished up Taylor’s training after Anziano Calvagna was transfered after 1 transfer with Taylor.  From that letter, I have excerpted his discussion of two stories.  The second one was one he had while he and Taylor were companions.  Thanks to Anziano Rasband for sharing these stories and making an excellent point with them.  We wish him the best as he returns home from his mission.  I know that Taylor really enjoyed his time with him and learned a lot from him as well.]

Yesterday I was thinking about what some of the biggest lessons that I have learned on my mission are, and I think I would say one is putting faith over fear. I remember two people very well that taught me a very powerful lesson, even though they didn’t know they were teaching me. The first one was a man from my first area. He had not been to church in over 15 years. We asked him why and he said that we had cancer 15 years ago, the relief society president never called me to ask me how I was doing (I should add that the relief society president at that time was a single mother of 5 kids who was working two jobs). He said, “I didn’t think Mormons could be so uncharitable.” He was then talking about how he has so many negative feelings towards her, himself, God, pretty much everyone. We asked him if he had faith in Christ, to which he responded that he did. We promised him that if he would just come to church that over time these feelings of hatred and animosity would go away. He said, “I want them to be gone so bad, but they will never
go away, and church will not help me.” Well, he never came back, and his hatred lives on.

Story number 2: In Rome my companion and I went to see a family that lived kind of in the middle of nowhere. They were active members and great people, but sometimes they struggled to live all of the Gospel principles. My companion and I thought that we should teach them a lesson on fasting and tithing. We went and taught the lesson, and it went good. After the lesson, the dad told us that a few days before he had been laid off from his job, and he didn’t know where to go to look for one. We felt inspired to promise them if they lived the law of the fast and the tithing that the Lord would help him find a job. So we organized a special fast. My companion and I and the sisters and this family all fasted. The dad, who is about 35, told me after that is was the first time he had fasted in his entire life (he was born into the church). He promised to pay tithing and fast every month from then on. That next week, another member of the ward called him and said that a spot had opened up on his team. They are door to door vacuum salesmen. He took the job, mainly because he didn’t have anything else, and started to work. Turns out that he was meant to sell vacuums door to door, because his first month at work he set the record for number of units sold and from his commission he made double what he was making with his old job. His success continued, and as I was getting transferred out of Rome, he was moving his family from their one bedroom apartment to a new one where all of them were going to have their own beds.

I have spent a lot of time thinking about these two stories in the last year or two. Basically from when they happened. The difference is the one put his faith before his fear, and the other focused on his fear. One was blessed, and the other remained where he was. I know that as all of us put our faith first and our fears on the back burner, we will all be blessed.


Speak Your Mind