Monday, July 25, 2016

"When it rains in Rome, it rains miracles"

Well we finished off our first whole week together as new companions
and in our new area, and it was pretty fantastic!
Each day got a little better, and we were just a little less lost each
day. The last "big city" I served in was Palermo, but nothing compares
to Rome. Even if there are a lot of different ward boundaries in the
city, our area is ginormous, but we are learning the roads and the map
so I feel pretty great and accomplished about that. We got lost a few
times, haha, but they just turned out being good learning experiences.
Tuesday we had Zone Conference, and it was our first one with the new
mission president and his wife, and it was really darn fantastic. I
love the Waddoups so much but I'm also loving the Pickerds a ton. They
are going to help do great things here, and they bring such a
different vibe to the mission I feel like I'm serving a completely
different in a completely different mission!

Last night I was talking to Sorella Clark, and she said something I
liked, "when it rains in Rome, it rains miracles". It is sooooo true.
For one, the rain itself was a miracle. Saturday and Sunday it was
overcast and sprinkled and rained some. It was great because we were
out and about all day and it would have just made it that much harder
if it had to be out in the sun. (It's been really hot. As I'm sure it
has been everywhere right now).
Saturday evening we were on the metro, finding, and then we got off at
one stop and were saving one of the numbers to the phone, and then I,
being my usual air-head self, left the phone somewhere...I'm still not
really sure where I left it. But if you know me, you know I sometimes
just kind of zone out. We didn't realize that the phone was missing
until we got home, and it was 9:30 and we realized we had forgotten to
let the district leader know we were home. Anyways..that was kind of
disappointing, but I had just been studying hope and faith that day
and I knew that it was more important that I chose to keep a positive
attitude. It was REALLY hard, but we stayed positive and kept praying
for it. I prayed that an angel would find it and bring it to our
house, but that didn't happen but it's all good.
The next day, Sunday, we went out to go look for it after church and
after we ate lunch. Then as we were headed towards the metro, we ran
into the Anziani, and they were actually headed towards our house to
give us our phone! Someone had found it and then called around the
different numbers on the phone and then someone else contacted the
Elders and they brought it to us! It was a MIRACLE. How many people
can say they've lost their phone on the metro in Rome and then had it
returned to them??? Not very many people. Talk about prayers answered.
Maybe no angel brought it to our house but there was definitely one
looking after it.

There were just also cool little things throughout the day also. Like
Saturday night we were trying to think of ideas for a ward party and
then we were like, okay, hopefully something comes to us in our dreams
haha. But then the only thing I could remember at all from my dream
the next morning was that I met a woman from Moldova, and I was like,
random? Because I've never met anyone from Moldova. But then Sunday
one of the people I talked to was a woman from Moldova!

Then Sunday night we were all over the place, and then we thought to
stop by this one members house. So we stopped by and she was home
thankfully and she also had a friend with her! It was her best friend
from childhood, and she is moving to Italy and just got there a few
days ago. (They're both from Peru) and it turns out that the best
friend wants to take the missionary discussions and start coming to
church and she was so great! She spoke little Italian and mostly
Spanish, but I was able to understand a good portion of it but her
friend also translated. It was just extra cool because her name is the
same as one of my bestest friends from back home, and I haven't heard
that name in forever! I was so excited.

Good things are to come in Rome 3! I know I said it last week but I'll
say it again because after another pday in Rome, my advice for all
traveling to Italy, the best food is going to be at someone's home or
in the poorer neighborhoods. Tourist food is expensive and not made
with as much love, and don't travel in the summer months it's soooo

Love you all,

Sorella Holiday

Monday, July 18, 2016


I'm in love with this city. Like literally. I love even more living in
the non-touristy part of it because well it's just better as a
missionary! Some of the touristy part of Rome is in our ward
boundaries however, like, the colosseum and the original Vatican, and
some other stuff.

Our ward is a lot smaller and almost no one is actually Italian haha.
But we pretty much all communicate in Italian, but if the people don't
speak Italian they almost always at least speak English.

It's been way crazy running around the past few days trying to figure
things out. The sisters that were here last got emergency transferred
a few weeks ago and so there was not much that they left behind.
Actually, there's literally nothing, zero, haha, but it's all good!

Leaving Pescara was sad. It always feels like it was all just a dream
once you go from one area to the next. I totally got showered with
gifts also, with it conveniently being my birthday and all. A
bracelet, a California shirt  :), and a scarf. All so beautiful!
People are way too generous.

This week I've been learning more about humility. The only thing the
Father asks from us (because it's really in the end the only thing
that's actually ours to give) is our will. He wants us to be better,
and He wants us to help align our will with His. I'm trying to be
better at this.


1) What is the general feeling of the members of the church about
having a temple someday in Rome?
   I think because they have waited so long, and the tentative date
has been pushed back yet again to maybe 2019, that there's not really
any fire for it right now. But in general, they are really excited.
It's going to be a PRETTY big deal when the Rome, Italy temple is
finished. It will be the temple square of Europe, and although the
temple itself won't be as big, the temple grounds (visiting center,
etc.) will be bigger than the one in Salt Lake.
2) Where do the members in Rome go now in order to be sealed in a
temple as husband and wife?
  Switzerland. Pretty much everyone in Italy goes to the temple in
Switzerland, except sometimes people in Sicily go to the one in Spain,
because they sometimes choose to fly instead of taking the 30+ hour
bus ride to Switzerland.

3) Do members in Rome and in other areas of Italy have to makes major
sacrifices in order to go to the temple?
   Yes. They are usually only able to go once a year. They organize a
temple trip for the summertime and go as a ward. But people who live
in the south, it's more common for them to not be able to go for a few
years, because it's quite a journey. To everyone serving in missions
with temples: YOU ARE SO LUCKY. You have no idea man, I miss the
temple so much!

Well yep! Rome is great. My new companion is named Sorella Groll :).
She is from Preston, Idaho. That's where they shot Napoleon Dynamite!
That same high school, was her high school. So that's pretty cool.
She's really sweet, and pretty much just a doll. I think it's super
crazy for her going from a town with 5,000 people, to one of the
biggest cities in the world, so she asks a lot of questions and it's
fun showing her around. I just kind of pretend like I know what I'm
doing, haha.

 woooo the new crew

 Yes, a former prison. They painted it yellow, and like, it works!

 The new church (better pictures on my camera to come)

 Crazy hair

 Post English course Bomba. I'm so pumped to have a senior couple in my new ward!

 Such a sweetheart. She gave me the movie Stardust in Italian as a going away gift. OH YEA
MOM. Someone in the ward also gave me a Barbra Streisand CD, they
burned one with a bunch of her songs, haha. So I'll have some good
stuff for after the mission hahaha

 I will miss them extra special

 We called her "the fountain of all referrals". I love her tons

 More of my heroes

 She is so classy

 My Brasilian mamas
I love these two. (The one on the right is supermarket miracle woman!
She came to church my last Sunday. There couldn't have been a better
surprise. The night after she surprised me with birthday presents, and
wants to continue taking the lessons

 I want to be like her when I grow up. SHES SO COOL

The sweetest little things

So Anziano Burgos is from the Philippines and I asked if he would make
Lumpia and so he did for my final DDM in Pescara. I don't think I've been
so excited about food for awhile 😭😭😭

 Birthday present

Birthday present

 Birthday Cheesecake

 Birthday Lunch

 Monday night, FHE/birthday party part 2

 Groundbreaking Pescara, before the event
And our crazy ward mission leader

 The groundbreaking
The original sisters of Pescara groundbreaking

 With the new ma and pa of the mission
Me and my companion look SO messed up. Haha it was so hot. Like my
sweat was sweating.

 Sister Jarnigan and the old Pescara church

So that time we got an online referral, and the address takes us to
this random Private Gynecologist. Hahaha, ohhhh la missione....

Monday, July 11, 2016


It's pday and it's my birthday! #blessed
I'm not going to write a long email today because I'm 20. I've been
told that your twenties are supposed to be your selfish years of life
or something like that, hahaha. Just kidding but really mom, there's
not a whole ton to say!
So the biggest news, is that this week there were transfers. My next
area will be Rome 3. It is famous for being the ghettos of Rome. We
meet for church in a former prison, haha. I'm super pumped to have the
chance to finally serve in the city of Rome! I don't know who my new
companion will be because I will be training again! That poor greenie
getting off the plane tomorrow has no idea what she's getting herself
in for! Because I definitely have no idea where anything is in our
area, or how to get around, or anything but hey! Learning experiences,
growing experiences, it's all good in the hood. I'll also be an STL
(sister training leader). Haha yea, I just about threw up when we got
our transfer calls. But I know it will be really good, I'm really
excited for the new adventure.

Saturday was a very special day (I won't be able to send pictures for
it until next week). We had the groundbreaking for the new chapel in
Pescara. The leaders from Rome came down, the choir sang, the bishop
spoke, and also one of the sisters who has been a member almost since
the very beginning of when Pescara was first opened to missionary
work, she spoke and shared the history of the ward.

So Pescara, has been open to missionaries for about 40 years, as with
most of Italy. The first baptized member was Fratello Di Iulio. He is
an amazing amazing human being. He has children who have all served
missions, strong members in the church, sealed families. But rewinding
to 40 years ago, he meet the missionaries, was baptized and for the
first year, he was the only member. Every Sunday he just met with the
Elders in their apartment and that's where they had church. Then a
year later, another family was baptized, a mom and her son and
daughter. (The daughter is now the bishop's wife of our ward). They
then became a meeting group. Over the next few years more people in
Pescara came to know the message of the restored gospel, received
personal testimonies, and were baptized. Pescara eventually became a
branch, and now it is a ward! The building they are building is going
to be pretty big, and it is in preparation of Pescara becoming a stake

They brought the same shovels they used for the groundbreaking of the
Rome Italy temple. It was so awesome to see these wonderful people who
have been waiting forty years for this day, finally get to see it come
to life. There wasn't a dry eye once Sorella Bosco, the mother of the
family that was baptized forty years ago, old and frail as she is,
went up there with tears in her eyes to be one of the first to shovel
some of the dirt.

Question Portion:

1) Are there any birthday traditions unique to the area where you are
currently serving? If so, what are they and how (or when) did they
No, not that I know of. But I'll figure out tonight! Also if you
wanted to know what I did for my birthday I bought a new shirt and we
had TACOS and cheesecake for lunch. (Yea, I seriously had tacos.
Haven't seen those in about a year)
2) Does the older generation talk about a decline in religious involvement?
Uhm, yea. Mostly nuns. Also, a lot of people think we're like in a
preparatory phase for becoming nuns. Uhm no. They are sweet women, but
I do not desire that for myself.
3) Have you personally encountered any young people who do not know
who Jesus Christ is?
No, but we met this woman from China who doesn't know.
4) What appears to be the biggest obstacle to getting people
interested in learning more about the restored Gospel?
Maybe because people think we're nuns, but I don't know. A lot of
people are afraid of talking about religion or because of really bad
former experiences, or they are just content with where they're at and
so they just shut you off right away.

I'm just so excited for this ward! And I'm sad to be leaving it, but
excited for Rome!

Thank you for the birthday wishes :) have a great week!

Sorella Holiday

Birthday selfie and twin shirts

Monday, July 4, 2016

America, I love you

For pday today we had a picnic at the park and BBQed, and ate watermelon and sang the Star-Spangled Banner.

This week we met our new mission president. Him and his wife are so fantastic. Such a power couple. They both served in this mission in the past, they already memorized everyone's names and faces and where they're from, they are awesome!

We had exchanges again, those were cool. I love and I am going to miss Sorella McPheters sooo much! She dies this transfer, so she's heading home to the motherland in a few days!

One really cool miracle this week was this girl, and I'll just call her Gina. So it actually started a few weeks ago. It was a very hot day, one of the first very hot days of he summer, and we had spent all day running all over the place that we didn't eat lunch so we stopped by a fruit shop and bought a sliced watermelon to share. We didn't have eating utensils so we also stopped by a bar and the barista gave us spoons, and then we went to find a bench to eat for a minute. The next day the Sorelle from Rome came to visit us for a scambio. Unfortunately they left their luggage on one of the buses, so a pair of us spent the next morning trying to find their luggage. We talked with everyone and it wasn't until the very last bus we were on, the very last person we met, whose name happened to be the same first name as Sorella Workman so we hit it off. We ended up seeing her again, got her number. She then referred us to her friend. Her friend works ALL the time though, but she said she had seen us one time at her bar. And guess which bar it was...??? The watermelon spoon bar!! It's not actually called that, but that is how I will forever remember it! Anyways, turns out, Gina, watermelon spoon bar barista, is AMAZING, and such a gem. We got to teach her a little bit while she was working one day. Purtroppo, she works ALL the time. But we'll figure something out!

Okay the questions sent in this week, I love the patriotic theme:
1) Do the people of Pescara view the American holiday Independence Day (aka The 4th of July)?
      No one really knows what day it is here. But we invited our new convert to our bbq, and she liked it. But she's great and thinks our accents are cute. I just love her!
2) Do you find it more of an advantage or a disadvantage when people discover you are an American?
   Depends, if they are young, YES. Because maybe they'll actually talk to you. If they're old, NO, because then they just want to know your political opinions, and your like sorry man! Don't watch the news and haven't seen American soil in about a year. Haha.  Or they just think that this is the "American Religion" kind of how all Italians are Catholic. I've met a lot of people who are under the impression that ALL Americans are LDS. Hahaha. Like the Vatican and Temple Square are national equivalents. Noooo not even close!
3) Is your American accent considered really thick and difficult to understand or are the locals somewhat surprised to discover that you have only been speaking Italian for 10 months?
    I get complimented sometimes on my accent from people, but i still just can't help it! People are usually pretty mind blown when they hear us speak Italian, after being in the country for such little time.

I love you! Eat some American dirt for me, and watch some fireworks :)

And a message on integrity:
Robert Burns said: “An honest man’s the noblest work of God.” Today, with honesty and integrity among men of high position at a low ebb and becoming lost virtues, some group must diligently teach, practice, and enthrone these principles as cardinal qualities in the character of man. It is more and more important that we have complete moral integrity in the men who shape our destinies, else the freedoms of this country will be sacrifices. The reports of dishonesty, graft, and corruption in government, business, professional, and financial circles in our national life lessen our position and strength as a world leader.

In all humility and sincerity we must admit a power higher than ourselves from whom is derived a positive moral code that will give our lives significance and purpose. We also must remember once and for all that honesty, respect, and honor as such are not for sale on the market block. They are ingredients that you and I and all people should put into our daily lives.

Carlyle said: “Make yourself an honest man, and then you may be sure there is one rascal less in the world.” Can there be a truly honest man without him being a good man, or can there be a truly good man without him being an honest man? It seems honesty must begin with oneself; otherwise we could not recognize this quality in others. We see things not as they are, but as we are. It is the responsibility of each of us to be honest ourselves--honest in our dealings and relationships, honest in our church membership, honest in keeping the commandments of God. (some conference talk from a really long time ago)

Love Soooorrrellllllaaaaaa HOLIDAY

On the bus on the way to Rome to meet our new mission president and his wife :)