Monday, May 30, 2011

the one about young blood

So I'm here in Lushnjë (loosh-knee-uh) now. It's the smallest city that missionaries live in. You can walk across the whole city in 10 minutes, but there's seemingly more work here than in bigger cities. My new companion is named elder Mugleston, and he's from Tacoma, Washington. He can also cook amazingly. We've already had spaghetti, cookies, and teriyaki chicken with rice. I think I'm going to like this transfer.

The branch only has about a dozen active members, and it seems like they never all come at the same time. But that's OK, because we have plenty of investigators! Why, just yesterday in church, we had 18 people stuffed in the big room in our house. Church was only about an hour and 15 minutes, but it was all quality time. Most of our investigators are kids who are in our English course, and it makes me happy that they want to come to church of their own accord; they honestly like it! Now those are some smart kids.

One of the promising people we're meeting with is named Klidi (clee-dee). He only met the missionaries last week but he already loves us. He comes every time to English course and every week to church. His appetite for learning the Gospel is huge, and he learns quickly. I'm looking forward to getting him baptized.

One of the awesome members we have is named Rajmond (rye-moaned). He takes us out to his little village in his car every week or so and introduces us to his family and friends and we have lessons with them. His zeal for missionary work is awe-inspiring, and it makes me want to be a better missionary.

Also last week, we went with one of the senior couples and delivered a wheelchair to a man who has multiple sclerosis. The chair will help him get around much better, and I can't even imagine how much it will relieve his pain after having to use crutches to move around.

That's about all there is to report. Pictures next week of our house! I hope and pray everyone is well back home!

Elder Weaver

Monday, May 23, 2011

the one about emergency food

So here's the lowdown on staying down-low:

Because the election results in the capitol have been so... questionable... some groups of people had the bright idea to stack old tires on different parts of the highway around the country, light them on fire and throw rocks at the firefighters when they tried to put out the tires, because apparently, that's how you fix a problem.

Because of this violence, we were asked to stay inside our houses on multiple occasions this week, and as a result, the week was slower than usual. But that gave me time to experiment with the food I found in the house! :D

Pasta with tuna, hot-dog-like-tubular-meat (you can never be sure here), and TWO types of gourmet sauce! On the left, BBQ sauce, on the right, ketchup! It was one of the best lunches I've ever had.

Because of all this, there is not much else to report. I hope everyone is happy, healthy, and grateful. Grateful for the things they have and not being ungrateful for the things they don't.

Elder Weaver

Thursday, May 19, 2011

the one about protests


We received the following email from Mitch's mission president this morning. It's nice he keeps us updated because if I had seen on the news about the protests and road blocks, I might have been more than a little worried.

Dear Parents of Albania Tirana Missionaries,

Below you’ll find the latest information about protests in Albania over recent elections in the country (if this is the first you’ve heard of the recent unrest, I’m sorry to alarm you). As a precaution, I’ve asked all our missionaries to stay in their apartments until further notice. Please don’t worry. Everyone is fine, and no one is in danger. I feel that everything will resolve itself over the next few days. I’ll keep you updated as things unfold. Thank you for sending us such extraordinary young men and young women to serve here!! We love them as our own …Much love,

President & Sister Neil

Link to the Albanian US Embassy: 

Monday, May 16, 2011

the one about sweet rolls


We visited with Mitch on Skype Saturday (for Mother's Day) and he was doing great and he looked great! He loves what he's doing. This is a screenshot from our visit.

Below is his weekly email:

It's raining outside right now, and that lifts my spirits like nothing else! I'd been getting tired of the hot, muggy weather we've been having lately. It looks like one of our long-time investigators is finally going to get baptized. It's been really interesting seeing how preparing for baptism has changed her. You see, her default mood is "angry" with a side of "annoyed". Many times, the lesson would end with her making sarcastic remarks then storming out of the room. For the past month, though, she's been much, much less angry! She even apologized for her occasional outbursts! I know that it's because she's making a real effort to change her life by obeying the commandments that God has given us, which are the blueprints to a truly happy life. 

Also, I have discovered something amazing: There's a store about 10 minutes from our house that carries these slabs of heaven:

What lies inside?

They come in like, seven flavors, but strawberry is my favorite.

It's a dense, sugary taste-bud-party! Also, kind of squished under it's own weight. Like a star experiencing core collapse.

And they're only 80 cents!

I hope things are going good, and people with problems are enduring them well.

Elder Weaver

Monday, May 9, 2011

the one about...

Uhh... I don't know what to say. There really hasn't been much happening here. It's raining as I type this, which I am grateful for, because I do NOT like the hot sunshine. Yesterday we went to church then had to stay inside the rest of the day because of the elections happening the same day. It's more of a precaution than anything; there weren't grenades going off in the streets or mobs looting businesses, but there have been some firefights and bombings. Whatever, it looks like things have calmed down already.

We still visit with members, trying to encourage them to come back to church. Still doing what missionaries do, talking to people, trying to find those who are ready.

Man, I hope next week there's more to report. Although I am glad to be here helping out in any way I can, however small or behind-the-scenes it might be.

Elder Weaver

Monday, May 2, 2011

the one about castles

Things here in Fier (fee-air) are slow like always. On an interesting note, someone is shooting off fireworks very close to the place we're at right now. It's a bit annoying, but whatever.

We have a baptismal date with a long-time investigator, and I hope it comes to fruition. Interestingly, we have about 3 people we're meeting with who've been investigating for years and years. I guess we just need to keep having patience and work on the Lord's schedule.

On another note, we went to Berat (bay-rot) for our district trip today. It was an hour-long ride on a very bumpy road, but it was pretty worth it in the end. Most of the city is on slopes, and there's a big castle on the top of the mountain. An annoyingly long hike brought us to it, and I have to say, I was impressed. That's all for this week. I leave you with pictures: