Address: Sorella Chelsea Buma
Via Flavia 21
00055 Ladispoli (RM)

Address for the mission home in Rome:
Italy Rome Mission
Piazza Carnaro, 20
00141 Rome RM

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Week 12--Easter and Pasquata

Hello family!
   I hope everyone had a good easter.  Sister bay in the american branch gave us easter baskets so something to open on easter.  we got necklaces that she made.  it was so cute and made not being with family a little easier.  I took pictures but i forgot my camera so that is a problem... I will remember next week!  or at least try!  It sounds like all is well at home and that everyone is doing good.  I love wednesdays and hearing from my family.  Thanks for the emails!  They are great!
    We had a great week!  We had a goal to have a baptism date by easter and we did it!  First we invited Sofia to be baptized but it was hard because we couldnt say an actual date.  she is leaving to go have a job interview in Rome and we dont really know what her schedule is going to be.  She said that when she knows its right she will be baptized but there isnt like a set date or anything.  She is great!  She was baptized catholic when she was 9 and studied with the nuns.  She understands the apostacy and agrees with it but then doesnt understand that she wasnt baptized with the right authority.  So that is where we are at with her as of now.  Our next baptismal invite was with Giorgia.  She is 11.  Her parents are members but her dad is not active at all anymore.  Her mom really wants her to be baptized so she started having the missionaries come over and teach her daughter.  So, Giorgia wants to be baptized really bad.  She knows the church is true.  THe problem is that they want the dad to baptize her and that is a problem.  Apparently he left the church because he was offended so the bishop told us to go about this really carefully and not to be too pushy with them.  Giorgia wants to be baptized in June once school is out so we just need to get her dad on the same boat.  I just dont think they understand that he isnt worthy to do it...  Oh well!  Heavenly Father has a plan.  I hope that her dad can get his act together though.  I dont know who else they will allow to baptize her.  Then on saturday morning we went with the anziani and taught fillipo and patrizia, a married couple.  It was so great!  The spirit was so strong and we asked them to be baptized on may 28th and they both said yes!  it was the coolest thing ever.  From the minute we started talking to him, he was crying.  the spirit was just there.  he had been to our church 2 weeks before and said that in his heart he just knew it was the right church.  we went and taught him again yesterday and he committed to stop smoking and live the word of wisdom.  So we will be helping him a lot with that.  his wife wasnt their because their daughters baby is sick in the hospital.  Apparently she smokes more than him and he was really doubting that she was going to be able to do it.  We are going to go back there this week and talk to her about it.  I really hope that through the atonement, she is able to stop.  and i really hope that she is at a place that she wants to stop and has that desire.  anyway, that was great!  they are amazing!  I cant understand him much because he speaks a lot of sicilian but i see the spirit working in him through his eyes.  its the most amazing thing to watch!
     OK, what else... So the day after easter is as big of a holiday as easter.  They call it Pasquata i think... something like that.  anyway, the members were at the church eating and stuff from 10am to at least 530.  it was crazy!  i cant believe it!  We were at the church till 1230 and then went to a less active families house for lunch and then went back to the church for our district meeting.  And the members were still there playing Chi voule essere un mormone... haha, who wants to be a mormon?? so great!  The italians are a good time!
    Oh i have to say this before i forget.  we get to skype for mothers day!  Im really excited!  we are going to the Bays for it.  We are going to be there after church so about 5 my time.  I will email next week with exact times but PLEASE set up a skype account.  Do whatever it takes and buy or find a camera and microphone for the computer.  Test it out and make sure it works.  Plus this way its free!  its gonna be great!   Im soooooooo excited.  Send me your schedules and i will see which family is best to call first. 
     Ok well i probabaly need to get going.  I have more to say but i will add it to next weeks email.  Just know that we drive a HUGE bus around. haha.  well the elders do and it makes for some pretty funny stories!  Also, i have thought a lot about pontius pilate this easter.  I really have learned a lot from his story.  HOw often am i like him and know that i know christ is my savior but dont actively stick up for him when everyone around me believes differently?  I really have tried to be more careful of that.  To be actively standing up for Christ all the time.  To make sure that I am really trying my hardest to show him i am his disciple by being 100% obedient, as much as i can, and trying to act as he would.  anyway, that is my little lesson i learned this week from the scriptures.  I hope you all had a great week!  Thanks for your letters, as always!  Get skype and ill give you details next week!  love you all!!!!
Sorella Chelsea Buma

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Week 11--Falling in love with the people

Hello everyone! 
Well it has been another good week.  I feel like i always have so much to say, it stresses me out.  first things first, this is the Bay's address.  i didn't get to see sister bay at  church this week because she was sick but her family was there.  they all said they had been waiting for me.  and they are having us over for easter dinner.  im really excited.
The Bay Family
Attn Sister Chelsea Buma
PSC 812 Box 3360
FPO, AE 09627
That should be it.  it looks really strange but it should be alright.  it should be great.  and i can send stuff home safely through the base too so i will have to send a little package in the near future.  mom, i have something that you are really going to like.  actually i havent bought it yet, but you will love it i think haha.  something that you have been missing for awhile. 
Ok, so the week.  first, during personal study the other day i read about Abinadi because we were teaching a lesson about his sister to a new convert.  in Mosiah 15: 5-7 it talks about christ and all he did/suffered for us.  leaving to come on a mission was hard.  leaving my family and friends.  its a constant struggle with focusing on the language and feeling like you are really doing all you can do.  but, not matter how hard the day is, it just will never compare to what our savior has done from us.  his mission was so much harder.  and he did it because he loved us so much.  its something that i cant understand but i really hope that is something i come to know better.  i want my relationship with my savior to grow and i want to be able to love more like he did.  i love this easter season.  Everyone is turning more to christ.  we taught a lady last night, a less-active, and we talked about the savior.  she left our church and returned to the catholic church and is pretty hardcore catholic now.  it was cool, though, that even though we dont attend the same church anymore, we share a strong love for our savior.  i loved seeing that.  now, i just wish i knew enough italian to figure out why she stopped coming to our church and stuff...  hopefully with time:).
I think i told you last week about sofia, the investigator we found through english course.  she is AMAZING!!!  seriously.  we watched the restoration movie with her last visit and she wanted her sisters to come and watch it with us.  it was great!  and then after the lesson she was so excited to pray and show her sisters how we pray.  she takes it very seriously.  one of her sisters seemed to be really receptive to our message and i think that she will continue learning.  the other sister was harder to read so it will be interesting to see if she comes to our lesson tomorrow.  i sure hope so.  oh and yesterday, in english course, we asked if anyone would offer a closing prayer and she raised her hand!  it was soooooo cool to see.  we are going to invite her to be baptized tomorrow because it is a mission goal to have a baptism date by easter.  i am nervous but really excited!  i love her so much.   its interesting that that love really does come.  she is the first person i met and fell in love with in italy and i have loved being able to see how the spirit has been able to enter into her life.  she will always have a special place in my heart.  oh man, its great!
next... this is more of a sad story.  we went on base friday night to teach melissa.  it was my first time ever meeting her.  we went with bobbi, she is also in the ward.  she is the one we had p-day with last week.  she is so cute and brings us american food. we have good milk right now:)  its so great that i can actually eat cereal.  i dont like the milk they have here.  its only the shelf kind and its SO nasty.  so ill keep having american milk until im forced to make the change.. haha.  so we sit down and before we even got started in a lesson, she said that she didnt want to keep learning about our religion because she had thought about it and wasnt going to be able to live the word of wisdom.  more like she just didnt have the desire.  it was SOOOO sad. sister pearson was so disappointed.  she only has a glass of wine once in a while and coffee.   just sad that even though she knew it was true, that was stopping her from being baptized... oh well.  my first drop. 
umm... oh ya, on sunday, church was about to start and the bishop came and asked if i would bear my testimony!!  it was SOOOOO scary.  i really cant speak italian well.... haha.  it was so simple but i did it.  i had to bear it in the english ward too.  that wasnt so bad.. haha.  i really have learned to appreciate having the ablility to easily communicate with people and share my thoughts and emotions....
to those reading this who have served a mission in italy, i am really starting to see why it is so easy to fall in love with italians.  they are the funniest, most passionate people i have ever met.  more than me, they dont know how to talk in a quiet voice.  they just get so into everything they are saying.  in lessons a lot of times i dont know what they are talking about and sometimes i think they are mad or something but no, they are just talking and they just get really into it.  haha.  i love them.  the old ladies are the funniest.  relief society is just so funny.  everyone has something to say and they say it loud enough so that if someone else was already talking, they are the one that is heard.  its great fun!  so different from our wards haha.
OH and this is just a funny story.  so after i had been here for like 3 or 4 days, i decided that i should probably do my hair for church...  well, we have a blow dryer in the apartment but not a straightener. so i got out my converter and my straightener... and well, it melted haha.  it is now just sitting our balcony because it was just melting.  ahaha.  so i havent really been able to do my hair.  i need to get a straightener but my companion always forgets.  i remind her but i dont want to be annoying about it.
Well, i think thats it.  thanks always for your love and letters.  it means a lot to me.  seriously!  oh and i meant to say this forever ago but thank you kristi for being such a good example.  i got to see the YW broadcast and i felt so proud to be related to you.  that was really cool!!  Tell all the grandparents that i love them so much!  thank you g'daddy and g'mamma connell for sending me a letter and the picture and bookmark!  it was great to get some actual mail!   i love you all so much.  I miss everyone so much but im enjoying serving the lord.  I just want everyone to know that they dont have to go through this world alone.  i cant imagine what it would be like to not know or feel the love of a heavenly father!  cant wait to hear from everyone!!! 
Sorella Chelsea Buma

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Week 10--SICILY!

Hello!!!!!  haha mom you are crazy!!!  how in the world did you know i was going to italy and then know that i was going to sicily first??  its insane.  i really feel like i just have so much to say i dont even know where to start.  ok.  well i got here a week ago and we had time to just get to the mission home, eat some dinner and then basically find out where we were going.  i was SHOCKED.  to say the least.  (by the way the shift is hard to use here so no capitals.)  then the next morning we got out at 530 to get on a train to get down to catania.  there were a couple of us that had to go to catania.  it was a 10 hour train ride so that was a little tough after we had been travelling in airports for 2 days already.  it was fun though.  there were 6 of us coming down here together, 3 old and 3 new.  but 3 of the 6 dont speak english as a first language.  so that was a little difficult.  the train ride was sweet though.  we were by the ocean a lot of the time and that was so pretty!!!  the water is so blue here!!!  it really doesnt compare to anything i have seen.  when we got to the end of the boot, the train got onto a boat and we took a boat thing over.  we got to get out and take pics on the boat.  i will have to send them to you! 
anyway, i got to catania and my trainer was there to get me.  seriously i couldn't have been blessed with a better trainer.  i love her so much.  she is just a fun, bubbly, great girl.  we get along really well and she is just so sweet to me.  i love her.  heavenly father really knew that i needed her.  she is from northern california, mt shasta.  and she is 23.  she graduated in my same thing and wants to do pt.  so we have a lot in common that way.  i really am so grateful for her.  we are going to have a lot of fun together.  this is her 4th transfer in catania so i might only have her for 1 transfer but im going to beg president to let her stay with me.  she is almost at her year mark and has loved her mission.  we have a pretty big apartment because when there are transfers, lots of sisters come to stay with us.  so there are 2 bathrooms, a big bedroom with 4 beds and then air matresses.  then we have a whole other room that is just our clothes and study room.  its perfect.  we are right above a bread shop and we are on the second floor.  the outside of it is pink.  oh and when we look out our window, we see the ocean!  its beautiful!  i will send you a pic of that too.   
ok, of all the things, this is the biggest tender mercy.  remember the family we met at the temple, mom???  they are in one of the wards we serve with!!!  can you believe that?  and she totally remembered us and so when i got into my room here there was a picture of me and you that sister bay gave to my trainer.  i havent seen her yet because they were out of town last sunday but i will see her this sunday.  tender mercy!  also, since they are on the base, you can send packages to me to her house and it only costs as much as it would to send to new york.  everything gets here and it only takes like 12 days!!!!  we couldnt find her address this morning so we are going to ask her on sunday and then i will let you know.  but i do have somethings that i need so this is just great!  just a heads up, im going to need more black shoes.  i dont know what kind i want yet but i really scraped mine up some how.  and while im here is a great time to send me things. 
so, we serve in 2 wards as you just saw.  we have an italian ward in the morning, a whole ward!  and then an american branch in the afternoon.  its sweet!  i get to understand things for 3 hours on sunday.  and the americans get us stuff from the base that is from america an cook for us and everything.  its wonderful!  well... actually i havent been there yet but i hear its great.  we went with one of the american families on a hike today for p day.  the wife is a member but her husband isnt.  they have 2 kids and it was great to just be with a family again.  they are great and just take care of us.  also, one of our investigators is an american on the base so i am actually going to be able to understand everything that is being said!!!  hahaha.  im really excited for that. my first lesson with her is going to be on friday night and they are having a bbq for us. 
as for the language, HOLY COW!  i learned nothing in the MTC.  people ask me questions and i just turn to my companion for help.  a lot of people speak sicilian too so it is just hard to understand.  they say that here and napoli are the hardest places to understand people.  so my comprehension is low.  everyone says it will come and i just need to keep faith that it will.  cause at this point, i really dont understand much.  i bear my testimony at the end though and because i am new i have to say the opening prayer for EVERYTHING!!!  haha its so funny.  i just know that it is going to be me when we ask who they want to say the prayer.  i just feel bad for my trainer because i feel like she has to do everything...  i guess when i can understand it will be better.  they say it takes till about half way through your second transfer...  i love when she talks though because generally i understand everything.  especially in lessons!  so keep praying for me!
as for the work, its going pretty good.   we have 9 investigators but not all are really progressing.  we found one last week, sophia, from english course and she is sooooooo great.  we went and taught her last saturday for the first time and then went and taught her yesterday too.  she read the intro to the BOM and said that it was like her thoughts were written on the pages!!  so cool to hear.  she really just believes that the BOM is true.  the only bad thing is that she is going to interview for a job in rome the beginning of may so if she gets it she is leaving in a month... it will be really cool to see what happens with her.  as for our other investigators, they are great but all of them have things that are holding them back from getting baptized.  and they all LOVED sorella pearson's last companion and its hard because i cant really get to know them and fill in that hole because i cant talk to them. i just need to learn italian adesso!!!!  seriously. 
transportation here is kinda a joke... haha. the buses dont really have schedules so we just cross our fingers and hope that one comes.  we basically just walk everywhere.  it makes it hard to teach because it takes us at least an hour to get to most our investigators houses....  but we are going our best.  we try at talk to people on the bus or waiting but other than that we dont really have time to just contact.  we havent done any house to house yet. 
I think that is all for right now.  i still need to write my mission president.  I am good and really happy.  not understanding anything but i couldnt ask for a better companion or first area.  its great!  i love it!  thank you for your emails!  i dont think that i will have time to really write everyone individually this week because i had so much to say in this email.  but know that i love you all and am so grateful for each of you!  Send me letters k??  I will write back but i can only email family.  thanks for everything!  oh and before i forget.  they got to skype (video chat) at christmas.  try to get that and set up an account just in case we can again.  love you all so much.  i am so grateful to my heavenly father for all the tender mercies he has shown me since i have been on a mission.  i love him so much and love to help those around come to feel of his love in their lives as well!  talk to you soon!!!!
Sorella Buma 

Friday, April 8, 2011

On to the first city...

We received a note from the mission secretary today. Chelsea arrived at the mission home safely and has found out what her first assignment will be.

Catania on Sicily!

We're so excited for her.

Here's a map of the mission so you can check out where she will be (just click on it to get it full-sized) and a couple of pictures.

Sorella Buma with President and Sister Kelly

Sorella Buma with the MTC group