Sunday, June 26, 2016

Picture 6/20/16

5/9 Elders in my transfer these guys are some serious studs

Beach volleyball and fireside for this week's P day

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Back to Sicilia

Hey guys!

I'm currently typing this email out on my iPad while sitting in the Questura of Ragusa, Sicilia. Yeah, Ragusa was the last city I was assigned to before Roma, but I'm fortunate enough to be back for a short little visit 😉

In Italy, us foreigners have to obtain something called a Permesso di Soggiorno. It's not very fun. It's pretty much a green card. Anyway, it's a long drawn out process, and when I got a new missionary as my comp in March, he had to start his, and I had to renew mine. But since it's Sicily, they scheduled our fingerprint appointments for June 13th lol 3 months later. So, here I am with my boy Anziano Perfili in the good old Ragusa just grindin' for that permesso. I flew in from Rome to Catania on Sunday and landed at 12pm, but there was no bus to Ragusa until 3, so we waited for just about 3 hours for a bus to get to Ragusa. 

When we (me and Anziano Nielsen) arrived to Ragusa, my home slice Antonio Lo Monaco, our Ward Mission Leader in Ragusa, came and picked us up from the station :)) love that guy so much. And with us were some homies Lorena and Paola. Paola is a good friend of a member, Lorena, and is actually currently learning more about our church and what we're all about. So the plan was that we meet up at the church with my boys Anziano Perfili and Clasby and teach a lesson with Noemi and her mom. But things came up and duty called, so we only had 15 minutes together to say hi/bye and then we left to Comiso, a nearby city 25 mins away in car, and dropped off Lorena and her dope friend Paola, and I saluted her fam as well. Then we went with Lo Monaco to the hospital in Comiso, where Giuseppe currently finds himself. (Yes, Giuseppe is the guy who had a heart attack and a stroke within 3 weeks). When we arrived, he honestly was worse than ever, in every way. It was hard. We sat down and talked. I didn't really have much to say actually and a lot of time was just spent listening. We weren't even supposed to be there cuz it wasn't visiting hours, but he told them I came down from Rome and it's a special situation, they let us in. At the end of our conversation, I tried to think of what I could see to boost his morale and help him be happy again. The only thing I could think of was The Book of Mormon. I knew for sure that's what he needed. I asked him if he had the book with him in the hospital, and he said no. After telling him how much it would change his circumstances emotionally, spiritually, and even physically, he interrupted my testimony by calling his wife and asking her to bring him his Book of Mormon from the house as soon as she could. It was so awesome. Just reflecting on what this book has done for me, I couldn't help but recommend it for someone else who needs it. It gives me answers to questions I didn't even know I had, and makes me realize that there's a whole new level of happiness and knowledge just waiting out there for me or anyone else who wants it.

In Rome we haven't had the most "success" I guess. We've been teaching some cool people and trying our best to help them prepare to make some promises with God, but they just simply aren't ready. It kinda stinks cuz that's literally why we're out here in the first place, but maybe today just isn't their day.

I also had the opportunity to see some homies this week from America!! :) on Friday, I saw my boy Dalton and it was so sick!! Haven't seen him since I left (duh) and he's changed a bunch! He's super YOLKED now!! But he's taken, so ladies, don't even think about it. We had a good time catching up and walking around Rome and gettin some bomb gelato near the Trevi Fountain. Then on Saturday the Toelkes family met up with me and my comp for some din-din!! 😌 good stuff. It was soo nice to see such good friends from back home out here in Italy. Surprisingly, none of it made me trunky at all and I'm still not ready to go home in 6 months...which btw I'm not 100% sure yet but I might end up extending my mission a transfer and come home February...not sure yet. Anyway...

We're as busy as ever these days and got a lot to do this week. We fly back in to Rome tomorrow (Tuesday)at 7:40am and will start our miserably tired week packed full of stuff, including organizing our zone conference and preparing a training that we gotta do. Wish me luck :')

We also had a scare today (Monday) in Ragusa. I did all my stuff to renew my permesso, we were just waiting on the final step, and then they all of the sudden tell me that I have to come back Wednesday or Friday to do it...hah. I was like nah fam I live in Rome and I gotta go back tomorrow. I got stuff to do, I ain't comin back for this!!! Long story short, the straight up homie, Lo Moncaco, calls some friends, says some things...and next thing you know they let me do it right before our bus ride back to Catania!! Oh and btw we had some bomb lunch at his house as well. Interesting "p-day."

Now we're currently on the bus to Catania where we will sleep tonight and then wake up around 4am for our flight tomorrow 😊😅

Well, that's all I got for this week. Talk to you all soon!

Anziano Carter Blaise

00169 Roma, RM

Inviato da iPad

Walking to an appointment in Rome

"Tbt when we got soaked in the rain"

Tbt squad

"Tbt cookin"

"Tbt..Thank you to everyone for this birthday wish!"

"A little study for our Columbian investigator"

"Tbt Giuseppe and Paola"


My friends from America...The Toelkes 

Yummy dinner with the Toelkes

Gelato with the Toelkes

Gelato with the Toelkes

Monday, June 6, 2016

Letter from Mission President

30 May 2016

To the Family of Anziano Blaise,

We are pleased to inform you that your son has been called to serve as a Zone Leader in the Italy Rome Mission.  He will have the responsibility to preside over two or more districts in one of our zones here in the mission.  He will be responsible for his zone both spiritually and temporally.  He will teach them once a month in a combined district meeting and will help with the planning and training at Zone Conference.  He will go on exchanges with all of the missionaries in his zone  to help them with teaching or language skills.  He will also serve as a member of the Mission Leader Council which helps direct and plan initiatives for the entire mission.

Elder Blaise is an outstanding missionary.  We are looking forward to the opportunity of serving more closely with him.

With best regards,

Michael G. Waddoups


Italy Rome Mission

When in Rome.......

Hey everyone,

Well, sorry I haven't written anything in a while...I've been busy and preoccupied the past few weeks. But since my mom got a little upset (😉) I've found some time here and there today to get an email out. Honestly a lot has happened since the last email so I apologize but I won't be able to tell you guys everything that went down cuz it would take too long, nor will I have time to tell all the details, but it's ok, I'll try and give you guys the condensed version without leaving anything #key out :)

Alright so rewind back to Ragusa a couple weeks ago. We had a zone conference together in Catania, it was a Monday, and it was an awesome conference. I learned a lot. It was focused a lot on the Restoration and how we can flood Italy with the story of the Restoration. At the end we all received a Restoration pamphlet and President challenged each of us to give it out before the end of the day. Eventually, we left and took the 6pm bus back to Ragusa. As we were waiting for the bus, I met this 23 year old girl named Sabrina. We started talking and ended up sitting by each other on the bus. Since the trip is 2 hours, we had PLENTY of time to chat :) as you may assume, this ended up as being one of the most natural lessons I've ever taught, it was so sick. So pretty much I taught her the whole story of the Restoration and the coming forth of the Book of Mormon, and at the end as I was going to invite her to learn more from us and take a copy of the book, SHE asked ME if we could! And even better, she ended up being cousins with an active family in our ward of Ragusa. Unfortunately, she was only going to Ragusa to visit her fam because she lives and studies in Messina, another city in our zone about 3.5 hours north of Ragusa. So yeah we set up something with the missionaries there.

As we got off the bus I was feelin' good and life was just awesome. Then our ward mission leader comes to pick us up from the bus station and take us home, but he's like the most silent and down I've ever seen him. He ends up telling us that our investigator, Giuseppe (the one who had a heart attack a month or so back), had just had a sever stroke and couldn't moved his arm along with half his face...I couldn't believe what I was hearing. 

In short, the Lord was trying him, again. And communicating with him in ways only he could understand and according to the will of God. Just to cut to the chase, Giuseppe and his wife kissed for the first time in like years and actually are happy around each other and talk to each other. Pretty much their marriage is saved, and Giuseppe attributes all of it to his heart attack and stroke. As we taught him in our first meeting and promised him the Gospel would bless him and his family as a whole, he didn't believe it at all because he claimed they were too deep into it that they could never recover their relationship. Well, we still promised him, and as we continued with our meetings and he continued reading the Book of Mormon, his life changed.

Anyway, last week I got transferred, to Rome 3. It's called Rome 3 because Rome is so huge that our mission divides it into 6 areas for missionaries. So we got a part of Rome as well as some countryside nearby. Let's just say Rome is NOTHING like Sicily where I just was. So different haha. But I love it! Even if the food isn't as good :/ still beautiful tho! My new comp is a boss and he finishes his mission in October. We are stoked to kill it out here and our zone is stacked so we're gonna go hard all together!!

Leaving Ragusa was one of the hardest things ever, so I won't talk about that. But just know that Ragusa and the people there have a chunk of my heart. I love them so much. My ward mission leader and I had a good talk in the car waiting for my bus to Catania...we're gonna miss each other a lot. It was the first time I've seen him shed a tear.

Well guys, that's it for this week. Talk to you next week! :)

P.s.....SHOUT OUT TO MY BROTHER FROM DAY 1 MATT MOSER! HE IS GETTING MARRIED TO THE GIRL OF HIS DREAMS ON AUGUST 20TH!!!!!! I am beyond happy for him. It sucks I won't be there, but I'll be ere in spirit. I wouldn't miss it for the world. Love this guy so much.

Saying goodbye in Ragusa 


On the ferry from Sicily to Italy


The homies before me and Anziano Stanley took our train out


We take the metro now that we are in Rome

Pasta al forno...better than it looks

The Manzini fam ...and Bishop

The Lo Monaco fam

View from the apartmente



Some English course students


Rome 3

week 68 & 69 Catania Zone Conference

Catania Zone....gonna miss it a lot.


Emma can't stop taking selfies..smh

Getting some role play goin at Zone Conference 

So bomb.. And yes, that is RICOTTA INSIDE 


Singing at Zone Conference (took these from the mission blog)

more Zone Conference (took these from the mission blog)

(took this from the mission blog)

Zone Conference (took this from the mission blog)

(took this from the mission blog)

Bomb as heck. The one on top was filled with ragu'

Late din din at the Dimartino's house a week or so ago

Put up with me even if I'm a "damage" because it's only with you that I can go where few go to!

Buona notte

Anziano Flynn..gonna miss this boss.  Even tho I knew him for just a bit

Random pic on the way to the hospital in Vittoria (checking in on one of our loved ones/investigators.

Random pic while out finding some less actives