Monday, November 16, 2009

God Blesses Us in Tons of Different Ways

Hey Mom!

How’s it going? So I’ll actually try to write you a decently sized e-mail this week, okay? Cool. First I will answer your questions/comments. That is awesome that Mitch is learning a language. And that way, him, Ryan, and Kevin can all talk Spanish together, right? I think Ryan spoke Spanish in Texas? Maybe I’m wrong, I don’t know. Anyway, that’s awesome.

It sounds like your lunch was super fun! I hope all their families are doing well. I believe that families are blessed when they sacrifice their sons for two years, though. I guess I don’t know for sure cause I’ve never been in one, but I’m on the missionary side and I know I have been blessed so I don’t know how you guys wouldn’t receive the same blessings I am right now.

I really hope Grandma’s surgery goes well. I will definitely keep her in my prayers. She always writes me letters and stuff and has always been so supportive. Tell her thank you and I love her.

Okay and I don’t know if pouch or regular mail gets here faster. But regular mail does get here like 100% of the time and there have actually been some horror stories about pouch mail. None of which have happened to me, so I don’t know how often it happens or anything. So yeah there’s my knowledge on that subject.

Dictionary time:
Mirë – Good
Rrofsh – Thank you (. . . .kind of. In Albanian they have a wishing tense and this actually means “may you live.)
Të gëzofsh – Another wishing tense. It means “may it make you happy.” You would say it like after you gave a gift or something. Like, I just bought a tie and after you buy it they say, “T ë gëzofsh!” Speaking of which, thanks for that tie! And at the same time don’t send me ties! I can get super cool ties here for $8. Yeah. It rocks. But thank you. =) I think I actually have a couple pictures with that one.
Qërrasje – Treat
Pallat – It actually means “palace,” but that’s the word they use for an apartment building.

Okay so missionary work. Well I am actually writing you from Tirana today. We just did transfers and I am now in Tirana 3rd branch. I’m not gonna lie, I was pretty mërzit with that. I never thought that I would be unhappy with a transfer, but ha ha I was. I had a freaking ball last transfer. I think the highlight of last transfer was working with our two xhaxhis. Theodhuraq and Fejim are two of the most awesome men ever. This last week we had to talk to Theodhuraq about church and that, because of his new job, he couldn’t get baptized yet. We told him that church was an essential part of baptism and that he needed to be able to come to church in order to get baptized. When we told him that, he was pretty upset which I was actually happy about because we definitely saw that it meant something to him. So we told him that we would work something out and that we would pray and he should pray too. And he did. And we did. God blesses us in tons of different ways. His new job was in Fier (about half an hour away from Vlorë), and it was basically just Saturdays and Sundays. So we were at a branch correlation meeting and we mentioned that to the other missionaries and they were just like, “Well, can’t he go to church in Fier?” We were like, “Oh my heck! That’s a freaking awesome idea!” We hadn’t ever thought about that and that was a great solution that we could tell him. So we went back on Saturday to tell him that we might have an answer and he had thought about it as well. We told him our solution, but then he brought up another solution. He decided he could ask his boss if he would let him start work after church and end up getting home at two or three in the morning. We said that both of those would work and he said he’d talk to his boss. So yesterday, he showed up at church and said, “I talked to my boss and he says it’s okay!” Oh man, I was so happy. He is so ready. Willing to sacrifice like that, he understand everything so well, he’s already on like page 150 or something in the Book of Mormon and he just loves it. And he loves to help out Fejim, who is a little bit slower (but just as awesome!). So basically, Theodhuraq and Fejim are going to get baptized!! Of course right when I leave, but that’s okay. Elder Garn is supposed to call me when they’re getting baptized so I will let you know.

Basically, I just can’t believe how fast this last transfer went by. It seriously felt like it was just a week. My companion, Elder Garn, was awesome as well. By the end, we were pretty much shokë të ngusht. So he’ll finish his mission out strong down there. I’m super jealous. But I know that I’m supposed to be here for a reason and so I will try to look forward to this transfer as well. My new companion is Elder Hixson from Tennessee. He is in the group that came to the country right before me so he has 3 more months than me. I think it should be a really good transfer actually, I’ll just have to get going right from the start and get used to it. He said he was pretty upset when he got the call to go to 3rd branch as well, but in his last president interview, he asked the president if he could stay so apparently 3rd branch grows on you ha ha.

Holy cow, this is a dang long e-mail. Thanks so much mom! I love you!

-Elder Swenson

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