It has been one crazy week with transfers. I'm still here in Navua, but almost all the elders in my district were transferred except for me and one other elder! To add to the craziness, President asked me to be district leader. But the best part is that I'm training a brand new missionary! And he's Italian!
We got our transfer calls last Tuesday after district meeting, and everyone got a pretty big shock. My companion, Elder Levasa, and another elder both were transferred to Suva, my district leader went to Nadi, and one other elder got sent to my first area of Somosomo, Taveuni! It was pretty sad to say goodbye to all of them because we all got close here, and they were super fun, but I'm sure they'll do great in their new areas.
After they left, our zone leaders called and told me that they had my new companion (at this point I didn't know who it would be), and they said that his name was Elder Giacalone (pronounced like Jackalonay) and he was straight from Italy! To those who know how much I love Italy and especially Italian food, you can imagine how excited I was at this prospect. But, the next day, they came down and dropped him off. Once he got out of the car I introduced myself, and he did as well, and I could tell that he hardly spoke English at all. The zone leaders left, and we took him inside trying to communicate with him and get to know him in his broken English; I could tell this was going to be a huge challenge teaching him Fijian AND English. We were talking like that for about 10 minutes when all of a sudden in a perfect American accent he said, "Yeah I can't keep this up; I'm from Tennessee." The zone leaders totally tricked me!!!
No, my companion is actually from Knoxville, Tennessee, but his family is from the island of Sicily in Italy. He is the first white companion I have had, but since he is from Sicily I am still considering him an islander. He's the man! I've only had him for a few days, but I can tell that he is super prepared for his mission. Once he learns Fijian, he's gonna be unstoppable. But despite being born in America, he says he can make some mean pasta, so I am beyond excited about that.
Our area is doing okay, but we didn't have much time again this week because of transfers. And a lot of our investigators are leaving for Christmas week, so we are just doing our best to keep the ones we still have going. We did have two investigators come to church though, and there are a lot of new ones that look very prepared to receive our message! Our work with the less-actives of the ward is going really well too. We didn't get the car; I don't really know the reasons why but we were told to wait until sometime in January. I know that as we do our best the Lord will bless us to keep up with all we have to do!
Yesterday I was able to do a baptismal interview for one of the sisters' investigators. It was a way cool experience to see someone who has been preparing for baptism, ask her the interview questions, and be able to represent the Lord in telling her that she was ready to be baptized according to His requirements! The Spirit is always so strong in those moments!
I'm super excited for these new opportunities to serve those around me. I really feel Heavenly Father's love and His Spirit, and I know that he sent me to Fiji for a reason. This Christmas, I'm trying to think more of His love and His greatest gift which was Jesus Christ. I'm so grateful to be a missionary and be able to tell people about this great gift.