Sunday, June 29, 2014

Party in Pavia! June 25, 2014

Ciao tutti!!!!!

So I will be staying in Pavia and training a new missionary.  Whooo!!!!!! I'm actually really excited, but I'm going to be here for soooooooo longgggggg. 5 transfers or 7.5 months. least we have super awesome people here. I don't know anything about the new missionary yet. All I know is that they are a day behind in getting here, so I get to pick him up on Friday instead of Thursday. Other transfer news. Anz Parker is going to Livorno, Anz Valencia is going to Merate (which is still in our zone), and Sorella Baer is going to Firenze to die (term that means finish her mission and return home).  She's super brava. Anywho, Anz Salmon's new comp is Anz Erickson. Yes. THAT Anz Erickson. My MTC comp/Anz Salmon's old comp. We are literally so excited to have the whole band back together. All we're missing is Anz Treadway. haha. So on Thursday I get to be a trio with those two goofballs, so we're pretty stoked. I'm going to miss everyone that's leaving, but that's life. So oh well, we move on. haha

As you guys already know, we had 2 baptisms this week!!!! YEAH!!!!!!! The De Simone family got baptized! And wow....what a baptismal service. Presidente Dibb came literally right after getting off a plane from America, and he loved it. The spirit was so strong. Anz Parker and I sang "Families Can Be Together Forever" and people literally started bawling. It probably didn't help that we were both dressed in white because we were preforming the baptisms. But oh well! haha. Then I got the honor of baptising Simona. It was so cool!!!! Then the next day, I got to confirm Max, and after, I had like 4 or 5 members come up to me and tell me that they felt the spirit really strong during it and that my Italian was perfect! It didn't sound any different to me, but alright! I'll take it! haha. My Italian has gotten a lot better in the past few days. Its weird. Like, I magically can put into practice the things that I already knew, but maybe wasn't really good at saying earlier. Who knows. Gift of tongues alright.

Besides that amazing baptism, yesterday we had the opportunity to sit down with the children of the De Simone family, and talk about what they thought about the baptism, about church, about the gospel and what not. We ended up teaching a really good lesson on the Book of Mormon. They are all interested in learning more about the church, so we invited them all to read in the Book of Mormon everyday, and they accepted. They are really good kids and I know that its only a matter of time before they are baptized as well. We are really focusing on them and making sure that they understand everything, so that they can use their agency properly to choose to follow the savior and his teachings.

Besides that, Anz Parker's been sick the past week, so we've been inside for a lot of the time. Then when we had lessons planned, I would scambio with one of the other anz to go teach it and them come back home. Got a lot of time to just sit and read the scriptures, or do some soccer drills for a couple hours. I was kinda bored. haha. Oh well. Then, its also been super hot and humid lately. It's currently pouring, so that's always fun. so we are basically always wet here in Pavia. Poor greenie (term for new missionary). haha

So earlier, I talked about President Dibb coming to our baptism, and when he called me to be a trainer on Monday, he was still talking about that baptism. He also told me in an email, that our coppia lead the mission in the month of June for number of investigators in church. Sweet. Then he told the AP's (who then told me) that "if this mission was a business, Anz Parker and Langlois....employees of the month". That's pretty cool right? The Lord really has blessed us this past transfer. 3 baptisms in 1 week? That's pretty crazy. I know the Lord has a lot in store for me and my newbie, so I'm excited to get to work and keep on baptising!

Thank you so much for your emails and love. The only think that I can think of that I need would be more Clear Care. If I think of anything else, I will let you know. I'm pretty sure I will still be here in Pavia when Pat gets here, so we'll see. Also, random question, but can one of you look up the song "Savior, Redeemer of my Soul" and find the piano music? Not the version in the hymn book, but the one that is the main theme of 17 Miracles. I really like that song and I've wanted to sing it a couple times at stuff, but I don't have the music. Thanks!

Italy is out of the world cup, but America is still in. I think we are going to do great this year. Germany won't know what hit them! Dodgers are doing well, so that's always good. Pretty much everyone is talking about the world  cup right now, so that's always fun. Go AMERICA!!!!!!! haha

The De Simone family is looking for a immigration lawyer in Utah. Like Salt Lake City. Simona got some really cool revelation the other night, when she said that she thinks they need to go to Utah. So if you could keep looking that would be awesome. They have a new email, so I need to grab that for you guys. 

Lizzy, I loved your email and its crazy how old you are now. Who said you could grow up??? Not me! haha. But I totally understand your Jr year pains. Senior year is awesome. but make sure you don't get senioritis like Sean. haha. I love your emails and I miss you tons. Loved the picture of Dad sleeping. Classic Joe moment. haha. Keep up the good work and have a great summer! and way to finish the BoM!!! WHOO!!!!! Start reading it again now! hahaha

I'm sorry that I never have enough time, or when I do my computer is lame, but pictures will come. I promise. I'm trying.

I hope you all have a great week! I love you all. You guys rock.

Anziano Langlois

Makin' A Splash June 18, 2014

Ciao tutti!!!

Well......WE BAPTIZED NELSON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YESSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was such an awesome experience. Literally, he was so happy, I was happy, Anz Parker was happy, the De Simones were happy, EVERYONE was happy!!! I'm so grateful that he got baptized. He is so davvero bravo, like he's seriously the tops. (Sorry, I've kinda picked up some weird slang from Slla Baer). 

Any who, lots of miracles this week. It was literally crazy and went by super fast. This past Saturday, we baptized Nelson, and it was amazing. When he bore his testimony after, he talked about how he felt this really "cool" feeling that he couldn't describe. He already had a super strong testimony, but it just got even stronger after he got baptized and received the Holy Ghost. He is a great member missionary already, so we are really working with him to teach his friends and his family. Then, the amazing De Simone family, passed their baptismal interviews, so they will be baptized this Saturday at 7:00 here in Pavia. We are so excited for them. After church on Sunday, Simona asked us to come over this week and really talk about the priesthood, because she recognizes how important it is and she really wants Max to understand it. Call it inspiration, but we were already planning on teaching about that. So yesterday, we had a really great lesson with them at their house about the priesthood and how important it is and how it will bless their lives. They are already excited to go to the temple to get sealed to together, so they really want us to focus on teaching their kids, so they can all be sealed together. That is our next goal here with this family. In fact, Matteo, the youngest, after the baptism of Nelson, went up to Sorella Mc Cann and told her that he was probably going to be baptized in a few months, because "it does free you of your sins" (those were his exact words). That's a smart 10 year old secondo me. 

So we are super pumped for their baptism this weekend. They are super pumped as well. And speaking of them, did you guys ever hear anything from the BYU law school? Also, do you guys know of any truck or bus driving jobs? I know that sounds weird, but Max has an international license, so he can do that kinda of stuff. Sorry, I keep asking for this kinda stuff, but I'm just trying to help them as much as I can. I know that the Lord will help them do what he needs them to do, but I'm just trying to do whatever I can here to help. I guess getting them baptized is a good start. haha.

Well, besides those awesome baptism miracles, we started teaching this other family from Benin (Africa). The mom only speaks French and Foh (some dialect) so we have to use the dad and son to translate, but she seems really interested. We are going to see them again on Thursday to watch the Restoration film in French. Should be fun. I know I'm called to speak Italian, but I'm learning some French, Spanish, and random African dialects. It's super fun. And speaking of random dialects, I got a call from the Anz Gainer the other day because he found a Book of Mormon in Quechua and he thought it was Quechee (I forgot how to spell it) and he wanted to give it to me. haha. That would have been cool. But dad, did you guys have the Book of Mormon in Quechee? Or what did you do? I don't know why I've never asked this before. haha.

OK, but here's the fun part. So basically, we had a super weird week. Last Wednesday, we went to Muggi├▓ to play some soccer. After playing, we scambioed with the capi to do the De Simone's baptism interviews. Oh random note, they told me that the restaurant "Toscany" in Westlake is super authentic Italian food. But expensive. Just a heads up. Any who, so we are on our way back and the sorelle call us. They were asking where we were so we could help them with their spesa, because Sorella Baer got bit by a bug and her ankle was super swollen and hurt a lot. Unfortunately we couldn't help them, but then they call me back and tell me that they are going to the Pronto Soccorso (ER). I told them to keep me updated which they did. The crazy thing is, around 10:30, they called us to tell us that they wouldn't be home anytime soon, so they called President and we were suppose to go walk them home from the ER. So we walked there (about 30 min walk) then sat with them in the ER for 4 hours. Then we had to get them home and Slla Baer couldn't walk, so we called a taxi and got them home, and then walked home. We got home around 3:30ish in the morning, so that was pretty exciting. It was actually really fun and I'm glad we went, because the sorelle had been there for already 3 hour waiting. Gotta love free health care. Everyone and their cat is in pronto soccorso. So we slept in a little bit, but then had to go to the baptismal interviews. They passed. super awesome! Then this week, we've basically been trying to help Slla Baer feel better, because she doesn't want to sit still and let it heal. But she's doing a lot better now. I love our Sorelle, they are so awesome. But yeah, so we've had a really weird week. But its all worth it, because we're serving the Lord.

Basically, its a party here in Pavia. I can't believe my year mark is past, that's crazy, but more importantly, I can't believe that another transfer has flown past. Transfers are next week. That's nuts. I'm per forza getting a new comp. We don't know if they will close a coppia or not, but if they do, it might be Anz Salmon and I back together. Super fun. haha. Who knows what will happen. I'm probably staying here as District Leader, but we'll see. You never know what the Lord has in store for you. haha.

Happy late birthday Lizzy and Sean!!!! Happy late father's day Dad. You're so awesome! You are such a great example to me. Thank you for your support and your letters. Thank you for teaching me the importance of real home teaching. Of serving others before thinking of yourself. You've taught me so much and I can't thank you enough. I'm looking forward to home teaching again with you when I get home.

The world cup is crazy right now. GO USA!!!!!! We have some new converts from Ghana, so when I called them after the game, they were sad. It was funny because the day of the game, Comfort, the wife, was talking some hard core smack at us. I think our players responded in the perfect way. haha. I love them so much, and don't worry, I didn't rub it into their face too much. hahaha.

GO KINGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 2 times in 3 years. We kinda rock. Love my boys. These playoffs sounded crazy, so I only wish I could have seen them. Oh well. And Italy actually cares about the Spurs winning here because one of the players on the Spurs is the first Italian to win the NBA finals. Auguri. haha. Thanks for the updates. Keep them coming.

I love you all so much and I hope you all have a great week! I'm still working on getting you guys pics. So hold on. They're coming. 

Vi voglio un sacco di bene!
Anziano Langlois

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Best Way to Beat the Heat June 11, 2014

Ciao tutti!!!
Well, its hot. Like really hot. Like melt your face off hot and humid deathness. So basically, its hotter than Africa in here. Literally, that's what a member from Ghana said. And you guys know how much I love the heat. So I'm just loving life right now. Despite the heat, I actually am loving life. Its crazy right now! We are busy planning for Nelson's baptism which will be this Saturday!!!! YES!!!!!!! He's so ready and super bravo. He's still an awesome missionary. He brought us to meet one of his friends last night. So awesome.
Then, super exciting news. We have some more baptisms coming up in the next week. Yes, that is baptisms with a plural "S". Max and Simona are getting baptised on the 21st!!! They are soooooooooooooooooooo prepared and ready to get baptised. Here's the write up of what happened that I sent to President Dibb:
Lots of miracles this week! The main one being about that amazing De Simone family. So, we saw them on Saturday and we talked about their baptism. They decided that they don't want to wait until the 5th of July, so we moved it up to the 21st of June. Both are on board and ready to go. They are so amazing and bravi. Yesterday when we were teaching them, they had already read about the topic, and were practically teaching us about decima and diguno! We will be having the baptismal interview tonight and they are so excited. Every day that passes, they get stronger and stronger. The Lord really does prepare people. Literally everything Simona tells us about how she's feeling, sounds like it comes straight out of Preach My Gospel or a conference talk! It's so great. I love them so very much and I'm so happy that we helped them find the gospel. It really is blessing their lives already.
So yeah. Life is pretty good right now. It still hasn't set in yet that we are going to have 3 baptisms in one week. That's crazy. Not to mention the fact that 2 of those are Italians! After we get the parents baptised, we are going to focus on the kids. The parents want all of their kids to be baptised as well, so we are going to teach them the lessons, to focus on them.
Literally, I'm sitting on cloud 9 right now. It may be super hot, but secondo me, the best way to fight the heat, is with some baptisms.
Also this week, we had Stake Conference in Cimiano, Milano. It was blazing hot, but the spirit was really strong. Nelson came to both the Saturday and Sunday sessions and the entire De Simone family came to the Sunday session. I love our investigators!!!!!! The Sunday session was a special broadcast from Switzerland for all of western Europe, so President Uchtdorf and Elder Andersen were there. They had really good talks, but I couldn't really sit and reflect on them because I had to translate them for Nelson. I've got some mad respect for the church translators, because its hard. Uchtdorf's was really hard because he went off script a lot, so the translators weren't super prepared, so then it was harder for me to re-translate it into English. haha.
It's crazy to hear about all the things that are happening back at home. People leaving on missions, Robert getting married, the Kings kicking trash in the Stanley Cup finals. I'm a happy man right now. haha.
That's so cool that Allison got her mission call to Madrid. That's where my friend Holly is, so maybe she'll train Allison! haha. Please give her a big hug for me and tell her congrats from me, whenever you next see her. Tell Robert that I'm so happy for him, but at the same time, a little mad because I won't be able to go see his wedding!! hahaha
That's awesome that you talked to Angelyn (I think I spelled that wrong). She's so cool, and I'm excited to get some snail mail, because I never get any. haha. Whenever we have conference, I never have any mail, so its kinda sad. haha. But when I do get it, it makes it that much better. haha.
Thank you for the info Mom. Keep sending me it as you get it. As for pictures, just send them however you can and I will work my magic here. If they are couple pictures that's fine, but ideally, I would like individuals. I'll just be happy with whatever I get. haha.
Tomorrow, is my year mark, officially. That's crazy. It doesn't feel like a year. Seriously. The time has flown by. I really hope the second year doesn't get faster. It will be wayyy too fast. I don't want to leave!!! I love it here in Italy. It's so awesome and amazing to be a missionary here. I love it so much. But yes Mom, its official. I come home on May 29th. That's when the transfer ends, so that's when they are shipping me back on a plane. That's crazy to think that it's less than a year away.....I don't want to think about it.
As for ways to celebrate. We've got some good ones here in Pavia. To celebrate things we usually go to this "American" grill right next to our house to buy burgers. It's got nothing on real American burgers. Or gelato, or pizza. Some kind of food will be bought! haha. Some people have the tradition to burn a shirt at their year mark, but I don't know if I'll do that. I like my shirts. haha.
Thank you guys so much for you emails. Pray for Nelson and the De Simones please!!!  I will hopeful be sending you pictures of Nelson's baptism next week. Oh yeah! Speaking of pictures, I'm thinking about sending home my 16 GB memory card for you guys to empty and then resend back to me. I'm almost done with one of my two 4 GB, and I don't really want to buy some more memory cards. Let me know what you think.
Statemi bene e pregate per pioggia!!
Anziano Langlois

Monday, June 9, 2014

Raging Waters! June 4, 2014

Ciao tutti!!!

Well, for all of you first of all who don't know what Raging Waters is, its a water park. And what do you do at a water park? That's right! Get wet and have fun! Well, that's basically what these next couple weeks are going to be like. That's right. We're baptizing here in Pavia!!!! YES!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm literally so excited right now. Every day, Anz Parker and I are dead tired, but we can't stop smiling because we have the coolest investigators ever!!! 

Nelson, first of all, is my main man, straight up G, home slice, coolest kid ever. Every time we met with him (so pretty much every day) he gets even COOLER! I don't know how its possible, but it is. He is going to be baptized this next Saturday the 14th. We had to change his date for stake conference this weekend, but he passed his interview and he is so ready. He is literally the best missionary ever already. He invites everyone to come to his baptism. And he just happens to be friends with one of our less actives that we've been trying to see and one of our new investigators. He's so bravo. Literally, the definition. Look up bravo in the dictionary, and you'll see that goofy smile of his. I love him so much.

But besides him, we have had so many miracles this week. This week was full of miracles. Nelson is coming along great. Like I just said, he is super excited for his baptism. We met some of his friends from his Italian class and he told me that he wanted to invite them but he didn't know how to say it in Italian, so I did it for him. He is literally such a great missionary already. He asked for some of our bigliettini so he could pass them out to people. We are still working on his family. He taught one of his aunts the other day and we are seeing her again this Saturday. We are just now trying to see his mom, sister, and other aunt. 

The De Simone family is also doing amazing! This past week, we had two scambi; one with the Capi, and one within our District. On the scambio with the Capi, Anz Parker and Horrocks taught them and got them to close their bar on Sunday and to come to church. This past Sunday, all 5 of them were there and they had such a fun time. The ward was really excited to meet them and it boosted Simona's desire to get baptized even more. After church, we were talking to them and they asked us if their baptismal date (for July 5th) could be moved up? I couldn't believe my ears!! Then yesterday, while I was on a scambio with Anz Salmon, we taught them again. We planned to teach the Word of Wisdom, but when we got there, we found out that they had already stopped drinking coffee and alcohol for an entire week, without us saying anything at first. While we were talking to them, Simona told us that she cannot wait until her baptism. Those are her exact words, "non vedo l'ora". She is reading a ton still and loves it so much. Max is coming along as well, just a little slower. We are really trying to focus on getting them to read and pray together as a family every night. 

I literally cannot believe how fast everything is happening right now. Literally, miracles are coming out of the woodwork right now. We just found another family of 3, who were a referral. And we set a baptismal date with the father, Weke for the 12th  of July. We are so incredibly blessed right now. The Lord's promise is true, he WILL open the windows of heaven and pour us out a blessing, that we will not have enough room to receive it!

We are working so hard to keep up with all of these awesome investigators. It seems like every time we see them, they have taken about 12 huge leaps forward in their gospel knowledge.

Its just like you said Dad in your email. Its so easy to love these people because we can feel the Lord's love for them. I'm trying so hard to leave every single person I meet, whether they accept us or not, with a better understanding of the gospel and why I came all the way here to Italy for two years. It really is such an honor to be a missionary. I couldn't even comprehend how amazing of an experience it would be, but now that I'm living it, I STILL can't understand how its possible! There are way too many blessings for this to be real! But it totally is. Like all the Africans say here, "God is great". haha. Its so true. I love my Heavenly Father so much. I know he hears my prayers and he is answering them in his own beautiful way. It's so great.

Thank you so much Dad for your testimony about your feelings from your mission. I share almost the exact same feelings. It's indescribable. I can't believe I've been here out a year. It doesn't feel like that at all. I can't wait for this next full year I have to just teach up a storm and help people come closer to Christ, so that their families can be together forever.

As you can probably tell, I'm super happy and having so much fun. Well, you're right. In fact, its so much fun, you could say that its a party......a Ghanaian party that is!!!

So if you remember, we have two new converts who are from Ghana. We did some service for them by cleaning off some mold in their apartment. Well, they were so grateful that Steven, the husband, went up and bore his testimony about it. But the coolest thing was, that he did it in Italian!! He speaks actually really well, but he's shy about it, and he literally stunned the entire ward. It was awesome. Then they invited us over to their house the next day to celebrate the birthday of their now 2 year old son, Osborne. That. Was. So. Much. FUN!!!!!! We walk in the door and their are balloons and lights and food and Ghanaian music and it was literally the best. They are so sweet and they kept telling us that they "love us too much" or they love the Book of Mormon "too much" or they love this church "too much". They are so amazing. Some of the most amazing people that I've ever met. We are definitely going to see them when we do a giro here together. But not only that, they invited some other friends over and we got to teach them! They weren't super interested, but at least we tried! haha. And I totally shocked them all with my ability to speak Twi. Steven and Comfort have been teaching me a little bit every time we see them, so I put it too the test and I actually had a conversation with them. They were really surprised to see this white kid in a shirt and tie, speaking Twi to them. I also got to speak Twi to Comfort's sister over Skype. She literally died laughing and told me that I spoke really well. (Not that well, because I didn't understand what she said when she said that. haha) 

But yeah. Life is just great. Way too much fun. And speaking of fun, the scambio I went on with Anz Salmon yesterday was so much fun. We had a blast. I'm so glad I get to live with him again. It's crazy to think that I'm now where he was when he trained me, but even crazier...that he goes home in like 3 months. Nuts.

Speaking of worldly things. GO KINGS!!!!!!!! We're going to win the Stanley Cup again this year!!!! We are the comeback KINGS!!!!! (haha...get it?) Keep me updated on the NBA finals. I bet the Heat win as well, but who knows. That's crazy that BYU has never lost at South Field. And its really funny that its always them and Cal in the final. haha. Dodgers are the Dodgers, so oh well. Can't win them all. haha.

Good luck with your finals this week Lizzy. Work hard so you can party hard for your birthday coming up. 

Mom, you bring up a good point. I trust your judgement. Mom always knows best. haha. And thank you for plan B. The De Simone's are super grateful for the help you guys are giving.

Send my love those good old WHS band kids. Especially Mr. G. Love that guy. I miss talking to him all the time.

I hope you all had a great week and thank you again for your emails and support. 

Statemi bene ragazzi,
Anziano Langlois

Oh What Do You Do in the Summertime May 28, 2014

Ciao tutti!!!

Well, another beautiful week here in Pavia has come and gone. It's flown by. I feel like just yesterday I was writing you from last week. Well, anyway, its turning into summer here, but it still isn't in full heat. Thank goodness. It's starting to get hot, but then it rains and cools down, so its been kinda weird. But oh well.

So this week, we've had some really cool things happen, and not just in missionary work.

So the other day, we were in for lunch and since our apartment is separated from the river by a large busy street, we always hear motorcycles racing by or other loud noises, but this particular day, the sound was different. It kind of sounded like an old drag racer. So we looked out the window and what did we see? Not popcorn popping, but a super cool boat race!! We ran out to the fiume to watch. So after talking to this old guy, I found out that these basically supercharged jetski boat things, used to be used in a race that happened every year, from Pavia to Venezia along the river!! So cool right!!! Well, now you can't pass some parts of the river and it cost money, so they decided to drop it. But the enthusiasts now come to Pavia a couple times each year to race around Ponte Coperto to show off their thingiemabobs. Super cool. We sat and watched the end of one race, then went back home and decided to do some chalk art on the ground of the fiume, so people would stop us. There were a lot of people, but no one stopped. We made the whole plan of salvation, and tried to stop everyone, but literally no one stopped. Ah....oh well, pazienza. So we basically got to watch the rest of the races between trying to stop people.

Yesterday we went over to see the De Simone family and while we were driving there, Simona, the wife, was asking us a ton of questions about the Book of Mormon. She specifically wanted to know about the other books that Nephi talks about (his other records) and if she could read them. We then got talking about D&C and the Pearl of Great Price. She then asked us if she could buy them, so we told her about the LDS store, where she got very excited. Then she asked us about what happens after death, which was great because we had already planned to talk about the Plan of Salvation, so she was very happy to hear about the spirit world and what not. Then she started asking us questions like, "if I get baptized, but Max isn't ready, is that still OK?" or "what do I have to do to be baptized?". She is literally standing halfway in the font right now. She has been prepared for her entire life to hear the gospel, and I know she feels the spirit when she reads or when she meets with us. It's such a testimony builder to me, because out of all of the investigators I've had over this past year of my mission, none of them have read the Book of Mormon as consistently as Simona or Nelson (our baptismal date for the 6th of June), and you can see the difference. Nelson and Simona are progressing much faster than everyone else, because they are doing their part to read and pray about the truth. I know that the promise in Moroni is true. That the Lord really does answer our prayers. I'm so honored to be a part of their path towards discipleship.

And speaking of Nelson, he's totally getting baptized next Friday. we are sooooooo pumped!!!!!! He is so bravo and every time we see him (which is pretty much every day) he gets cooler and cooler. His testimony has grown so much in this past month and a half that we've known him. Actually, its only been a month! Crazy!!!! He has his interview tomorrow night, so we'll see what happens, but it looks like its about to get wet again here in Pavia.

Man oh man. Speaking of tomorrow, in a year tomorrow, I will be on my way can't believe it. That is so crazy. Where has the time gone. Just like Lizzy was saying, its crazy because at times it feels like a really long time, but at the same time, it feels like I've only been here a week or two. Nuts. My sense of time is so screwed up. haha.

And speaking to Lizzy again. Oh my goodness! When did you grow up?? You still look the same to me, but I can tell that you are so much older. Wow. You will always be like 10 in my eyes though. I don't care how old you get, you will always be 10 or so and coming into my room Christmas morning to play GameCube because you can't sleep. haha. But thank you so much for the pictures. You looked gorgeous Lizzy. Tell Kyle he chose well and he looked strapping. haha. I'm also super pumped to hear that your AP's went well. I knew you'd kill it. haha. Oh yeah, and random thought, but I don't remember if I ever told you about Adele, this girl from Prato. She was OBSESSED with One Direction. Literally, she would walk up to me in church and show me her arm that she had written song lyrics or their names on. She's crazy. Its literally all she talks about. When we went over to their house, the mom had to tell her "basta!!!" (enough). It was super funny. Especially because all of her brothers make fun of One Direction, so it was just like home. haha.

I'm super pumped to hear about the Dodgers turning it around and the Kings doing it as well. GO KINGS!!!!!! Keep me updated Dad. I love it and so does Anz Parker. We're super excited here for the world cup to start. Most Italians have already given up on their hopes to win or even get out of the group stage. haha. In fact, I saw an ad for tvs and other electronics that said, if Italy wins the mondiale, you get a full refund for what you payed. Pretty sweet deal I'd say. but you can clearly see how much confidence they have in their own national team. haha. I'm proudly supporting the US of A and I'm hoping we go far. Keep me updated on everything for the mondiale. I already made a bracket. haha.

In sad news, I'm so sorry to hear about that tragedy in Isle Vista. I knew Veronika. Not super well, but I had met her a couple times. I knew her older brother better. That's so sad. Unfortunately, I see things like that here in Italy every day. Literally every day the newspaper talks about some kind of killing or shooting or hanging or even someone getting crucified in Rome. It's so sad and a ton of people are loosing hope in God in life and just everything. That's why I try to hard to bear my testimony to the people we meet so that they can know that there is hope despite all of these tragic things that happen in the world.

Thank you so much for getting in contact with the lawyer. Let me know as soon as possible when you find out stuff. Or you can send it directly to Simona's email (Its in a couple emails back). They are literally doing everything they can to try and get to America before October. They even started looking for restaurants and housing in Thousand Oaks. haha. They are so funny. I love them so much.

I'm really jealous of your trips and I can't wait to go on them with you guys when I get home. I just miss being able to chill with the family. Oh well, only a year away.

Another random thing. Jason, I know I told you about Anz Valencia's sister in Salt Lake City. But seriously, we've been talking and you guys would really hit it off. She loves artsy things and all that fun stuff. You should at least try and contact her. At least to be friends. She sounds really cool.

Well, thank you so much for you love support and emails and prayers. They help so much. I love you guys so very much. I didn't get the time to read your talk this week dad, but we have a chill p-day today, so I'll probably read it today. I'll let you know next week what I thought.

Vi voglio bene!
Anziano Langlois

PS. I'm still trying to send photos. But some computers don't read my card reader and some do, so its a crap shoot every week. Sorry again. I'm trying!!!

Clean Upon Aisle 4 May 21,2014

Ciao tutti!!!

Well, another week has flown by. It seemed a little bit slower than normal, but it still flew past. As you guys know. We had transfers this past week, so Anz Salmon is now an official member of the Pavia district. I officially did my first district meeting this week. I talked about repentance and how we can receive miracles based on the changes we make in our lives to more perfectly become disciples of Christ. I'm pretty sure it went well. Anz Parker liked it at least. haha.

So this week, we had some great miracles and some fun times like always. First we'll start with some fun times we've been having here. Anz Salmon is way too much fun. He's more fun than I remember. His coppia is really being blessed for the work that they are doing and they are having a blast doing it. 

Anz Parker and I have really been working a lot with one of our investigators, Nelson, and this past week he came with us twice to clean up some mold that was in the apartment of one of our new converts. He is so much fun and he loves being with us. He is going to get baptized on June 7th, so we are super excited. In fact, one of the biggest miracles we had this week was Nelson coming to church for the first time!!!! And not only that, it was the first time we have had an investigator in church since I've been here!!!!! SUPER MIRACLE!!!!!! We are so excited for him and I'm so happy to be a part of his path to salvation. But back to mold, we have to go back to that apartment to clean up some more mold. It's dangerous how much mold their is. They have two young kids, so we are just trying to do the best we can to give them a healthy environment to live in. We are probably going over tonight with the other anziani to get a good chunk done in the other rooms.

OK, so the De Simone family is probably one of my favorite families that I have ever met. They are sooooo bravi and awesome. And this week, we had a real break through with them. On Thursday we went to meet with them as usual, and then we went to serata familiare together with them. Usually the husband, Max, and two of his kids come, but this time, both Max and Simona came, the parents. This was the first time that we had them both at an activity, so we were really excited. Unfortunately no one showed up to serata familiare except them and the other missionaries, so Anz Parker and I were trying to decide what to do for serata familiare. Anz Parker said that we should take the opportunity to sit down with them alone and really go in depth about the Book of Mormon. I followed his wise counsel, and we asked the other missionaries to kindly leave so we could teach them. I'm so glad I listened to Anz. Parker, because we had an absolutely amazing lesson with them. We explained why the Book of Mormon is so important and why we had asked them to read it and pray about it. Max sheepishly replied that he thought he could only read it when he was with us. After bearing some really strong testimony (you could feel the spirit so strongly) we invited them to read every day in the Book of Mormon and to pray each time they read. They both accepted immediately and promised us that they would do it. A few days later when we saw them again, Simona had her Book of Mormon ready to proudly show us that she had been reading. Bear in mind, we committed them to start reading on Thursday night, and this was Monday night, but she showed us that she was already in 2nd Nephi 5. She just kept telling us how much she loves it and how excited she is to go and read it every day. Max is reading as well, but has been really busy with work, so he is reading a little slower. But Simona again yesterday was super excited to share with us what she read and the questions she had. She loves the book so much that she told us something really cool. Normally, she would never force her children to do anything, but she told her oldest child, Alessio, that after school finishes in a few weeks, to start reading the Book of Mormon. She is literally on fire right now. She never was really credente, but now she is grabbing onto the Book of Mormon exactly like the people in Lehi's dream with the iron rod. My testimony of the Book of Mormon really grew this week thanks to this amazing family. I know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God and by reading it, just like Joseph Smith said, we will grow closer to God than by any other book. I'm so grateful and humbled by my sacred calling to share this truth with the people of Italy. I'm so grateful for the Book of Mormon and the power it contains.

I'm so lucky to be working with this family. I can't wait to see them again. Even though we see them almost 3 times a week, it's never enough! They took us out to dinner the other night for FHE. They are so awesome. Also, they want you (mom) to go and accept their Facebook friend request on my page. haha. I think that Simona also tried to friend request you directly mom. Bo...

But then another matter of importance. They are getting closer to selling their bar and they really need to get into contact with that lawyer to see if he can help them. I know you are all super busy this week with trials and all district, but if you could just find like 5 minutes to try and get in contact with him, that would be great. They thank you already for everything you guys are doing.

Oh yeah! I almost forgot. So this past week, we went to transfers together with Nelson because he wanted to meet more missionaries. On our way there, after a whole train fiasco, we got stuck on the slow train going to Milano. So we started reading in the Book of Mormon together with Nelson. We tackled the infamous Jacob 5 together. But while we were reading the man sitting next to Anz Parker asked us, in perfect English, if we knew that there was the Book of Mormon on smart phones. Turns out, he lived in Las Vegas for about 20 years and had LDS roommates and friends, so he recognized the book and pulled it up on his phone and started following along. Super crazy right?? He put in some good comments and we got his phone number and a return appointment and saw him on Saturday. He's really cool. He says that he really likes us as people, but says that he will never join the church. We'll see about that one. haha. But then coming back from transfers together with Nelson, he told us that he had a friend that he wanted us to meet. So we met him at the Pavia train station and taught him really quick. Invited him to come to church and he came! He only made it for priesthood, but that's OK for now. So yeah, Nelson is pretty much a missionary already. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that he reminded us of the lesson we had with Gio (the guy from the train) and asked if he could come. We brought him and after Gio asked a question about the Book of Mormon, Nelson looked at me and asked if he could answer it. He explained the answer perfectly. What a bravo ragazzo. Wow. I was impressed.

So yeah, that's our life here in Pavia. It's kinda hot, but oh well. Having way to much fun and getting work done.

Thank for the sports update. I'm super pumped that the Kings pulled it out against the Ducks and I hope we can beat the Blackhawks. Dodgers are pathetic. Gotta love them anyway.

Thanks for the summary on all those talks dad. That was really cool to see what these general authorities are talking about. Also, I loved the stories from Ward conference. Tell Brother Cross I say hi and Trenton a special hello when he gets there. I still remember going to that Real Salt Lake game with him. That was so much fun. I love that kid. I definitely count him as a good friend.

Well, I love you all and I love hearing from you all. Thank you so much for the emails and love and support. You guys are the best. 

Statemi bene i miei cari,
Anziano Langlois

We Are Putting the Band back Together May 14, 2014

Ciao tutti!

Well, minus being able to talk with my awesome family this week via Skype, not much really happened. So basically being able to actually see you guys and talk to you guys was awesome. It's still really weird that we did that, because I feel like Christmas was last week. It's crazy how fast time goes. Anyway, Anz Parker loves you guys, especially Jason, and the De Simone's think you guys are hilarious, not to mention the other random Italians that were there in the bar watching my Skype you guys. haha. Gotta love Italians, they don't really understand personal space. haha

Well, as you guys know, this week is transfers, so I've got some info for you guys. Anz Parker and I will be staying together for another transfer, but I have been called to be the District Leader here in Pavia, so that's kinda exciting. Anz Valencia is staying and Anz Gainer is going to Cimiano in Milano, so he's not going very far. The best part is, Anz Valencia's new comp is the one and only......Anz Salmon!!!!!!! That's right! My "dad" is coming back to live with me in good old Pavia. I'm so excited to see him again. He's so funny and its going to be a blast. It will be weird to be his DL, but oh well. haha. Scambi with him will be really fun. Just like the good old days. Besides that, not much is happening this week.

We had a super fun English class last night, where we had a party for Slla Palumbo who is leaving us to go to Lugano in Switzerland, but we are getting Slla McCann (Anz Holland's granddaughter) in her stead. I've already served with her when I was in Prato, so that should be fun. Speaking of Prato, it became a Ward this past week!!!! They just combined the Firenze and Rimini districts to make a super Stake and Prato became a Ward. I'm so pumped for them. I only wish I could have been there to see it. Oh well.

Here's one of the miracles for this week. So every Tuesday we go over to see a family, the De Simone family, and then we go to English class together.  Usually the husband comes to English class with us, but yesterday he was really tired, so his wife came instead with their kids.  We've been wanting her to come for a while to see the church and what not.  Since we got there early, I decided to take them on a quick church tour.  As I talked about each room, Simona, the mother was listening very intently and when I showed her the picture of Jesus standing at the door without a handle, she asked me about it, so I explained it and she said she really like it.  She then asked me for the name so she can find it online.  When we talked about the Primary, she asked us about baptism, and after I told her that we baptize kids after they are 8, because we believe that they person should be able to choose, she said that she was "d'accordissimo" with that idea.  Then we had a member working in genealogy, so I had him explain about it and they just started talking, and I could tell that Simona was really impressed with everything she saw and really liked it. The Lord works in mysterious ways.  Sometimes its through a really tired husband.  I'm so grateful to be able to help this family come closer to Christ.  They are so bravi and I can't wait to help them on their path to an eternal family.
(I don;t know why the font and color changed, but oh well.  It happens I guess. Weird.) 

I'm excited to read your talk dad and I will let you know about it next week, but thank you for that.  And thank you for the sports report.  Go KINGS!!!!!!! I hope they don't choke.  They need to go strong, but that's weird that on one has won at home yet.  Let's hope that we're the first to do so.  Both Parker and I are rooting for the Clippers, so let's keep our fingers crossed there.  Dodgers...well, at least they are playing 500 ball.  Better than they usually do. haha

A very special thank you Dad for the random car post.  that is awesome. Valencia and I love to talk  about cars, so I'm really glad you sent that.  It's so cool!  And totally crazy.  I will be honest though, at first when I saw the title, I thought you bought a new car that was crazy fast.  I got really excited. hahaha

I'm really jealous of your Mother's day feast, that sounds AMAZING.  Simona made us some good food after we got done Skyping, so I guess its not that bad.  They always thank me for you. They are such an amazing family. 

OK, liked I promised, I will send pictures today.  I have some more time than usual, so I will try to send as many as I can. 

I love you all and I hope you all have a great week!!! 

Anziano Langlois 

PS OK well I just tried for the last 10 minutes or so to get my USB to work.  It's being lame today, so I will try again next week.  I promise I will send pictures as soon as I can!!

Sunday, June 1, 2014

The Floating Puffballs of Doom May 7, 2014

Ciao tutti!!!

Well, that's probably an interesting title. So I bet you are all sitting on the edge of your seat to find out what it means. Well, it means exactly what it looks like. This past week, Pavia has been taken over by the evil floating puffballs of death. Apparently this happens ever year, but this year its worse. So I'm not sure exactly what it is, and neither do the Italians. They just say its "pollen" but its not really. Unless the pollen is on steroids. Anyway, this stuff just floats around ALL DAY and its EVERYWHERE!!! It literally looks like its snowing outside. Unfortunately, I've been a little sick for the past week with a cold, and these puffballs are not helping. When we go outside, I start coughing like crazy and Anz Parker, who is a little allergic, starts sneezing, so we are just a mess walking down the street. Now Anz Valencia is a little sick as well, so this week has been kinda slow for both copie. We are still trying to go out and do work, but some times we have to come back in early because we are dying coughing or sneezing or what not. So that's always fun. Its always hard to sit at home and do nothing as a missionary. You just always have this guilt like you should be sucking it up and just going out to do it, but when you're sick, you need to stay in and rest for a bit, so you can get better. 

Any who, despite our sickness, we've had some miracles and some great times this past week. So as you guys know, this past Thursday it was Primo Maggio (May 1st) which is Labor day here in Italy. I don't remember if its the same in America. I honestly have forgetting like everything about America. Anyway, its a holiday that Italians love because they don't have to work and they usually eat BBQ. We went over to a member's house and ate so. much. meat. I could have sworn we were at Famous Dave's or Texas Roadhouse or something. First we had giant, thick slabs (yes literally slabs) of bacon. Then we had some really good ribs. There was so much meat on each one. Super good. Then we had salsiccia (sausage more or less), and then steak. Oh goodness me. So much meat but so much goodness. Then we had two types of cake for dessert. I love Italy, and I can't wait for you guys to come and taste some of this food. it's out of this world. But never fear! I'm bringing back recipes and I'm learning how to make it too. I've mastered lasagna more or less, so we'll see how it compares to the young women's. haha. Then, speaking of food. Today, we are going to a member's house who is from Sicilia, and a super good cook, to basically cook with him for 6 hours. Its going to be so much fun. I will learn a lot and bring home lots of good recipes to make for you guys.

Next, miracle time. This week, we went out to a member's house to visit them. The husband has recently gone less active, so we've been trying to help him come back to the fold. The situation between the husband and wife has been a little rocky recently, so we've been praying for them and trying to unite them as a family. Every time we go over, it gets better. And Monday, when we went, things we're getting even better! Fratello Carbone still has some difficulties with some things, so we are trying to work with him to help him. But coming back from their house, we were running to catch the train, when all of a sudden, this man drove up to us and asked us if we needed a ride. I usually don't accept rides from random strangers, but this time, I felt impressed to, so we did. His name was Mustafar, and he's from Morocco. He loves helping people, and when he dropped us off at the station, he asked us if we could come over some time to meet his family. We happily agreed and exchanged numbers. It was such a crazy miracle, because he said that he saw us running and something told him to get into his car and come ask us for a ride, so he did! The Lord really does work in mysterious ways sometimes, but I know that the Lord had him waiting there at that exact moment, so we could meet him. We are going over to see his family soon, we just need to set up a time. As dad always says, "just another daily miracle".

So yeah, basically this is my week. A lot happened, but not a lot at the same time. I hope I feel better. We are already having a better week so far. We got two new investigators yesterday. One is an engineer from cameroon and you can totally tell he's an engineer. I know exactly how he thinks. Who knew math related so well to the gospel! haha.

Anyway, to answer you're questions, When you send a package, I'm really not sure who pays the customs. I think the mission does and then we are suppose to pay it back with our own money. I still need to figure that one out. But the customs haven't been terrible. I think the most expensive was 40 euro. Bo...I really don't know because I only see what you paid in dollars to send it. I'll figure it out. 

As for Mother's day. We've secured a location, so expect me to be on around 9 your time. I will go to the Google hang first and try that, but we'll see what happens. As for Anz. Andersen's picture on my account, that's too funny. I remember that. What a fun kid. Love him. Miss those times with him.

I'm really jealous of Julia that she's down south. I really want to go see down south. Every one tells us to go see it because it's gorgeous. But I totally understand the beggar kid. We call them "zingari" here or "gypsys". You have to watch out for them. I'm pretty good at noticing their sneakiness, and I'm always paying attention, so don't worry. Nothing stolen yet. haha.

There is no problem trying to open the pictures you send. And the videos I can open, but I usually don't have headphones so I can't hear them. But I can see them.

Speaking of Anz. Walker, one of our awesome sorelle here, Sorella Baer, from Alpine, (Maybe the other elder knows her) saw him at consiglio and apparently Anz Walker was telling her about how much fun we had together and how much he misses me. Oh man, Anz Walker, what a goofball. I love that kid. I hope I see him soon. Probably at transfers, but we'll see. Man, I miss all of my previous comps. They were all so much fun! I loved being around them and I miss them all. But speaking of transfers, those are next week already. I know right!!! That's crazy. This transfer has flown by. I hit my year mark next transfer. Crazy....I think I'll be staying, but we'll see what happens.

Now onto sports. Both Anz. Valencia and I knew before it happened that BYU would lose to Stanford. They pulled a typical BYU. Lose to the team that they have beaten every other time during the season. *sigh*....oh well. Life moves on. As for the Kings....GO KINGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YEAH!!!!! Man, I wish I had brought my Kings shirt here. I want to rep my pride. Also pumped that the Clippers are doing well. I hope they don't crash and burn also. Dodgers, least we're not in last. haha

I'm so sorry to hear about your arms dad. That sounds terrible. I hope they heal soon. And good luck on your talk. Let's hope you don't become the next Joel Bryan with the Santa Claus incident. hahaha. I'd love to read it if you want to send it.

Well, I love you all and I hope you are all doing well. I wish you the best for this week. I'm going to try and send pics, so we'll see what happens.

Statemi bene!
Anziano Langlois

PS. Pics didn't come this time...again. Sorry!