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Jacob will be unable to read this blog during his mission. If you wish to contact him, please use the information below.
He may not be able to respond directly to each letter or e-mail, so check back weekly to learn of his progress!

Adriatic South Mission
P.O. Box 2984
Bulevardi "Gjergj Fishta"
Qendra "ALPAS", Shkalla NR. 5,
Apartamenti NR. 14
Tirana 10000, Albania

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

5 January 2015

Dear Family and Friends,

Thank you for writing to me every week! I really look forward to the time I have to read what you have been up to each week! It sounds like you've had a pretty chilly, but good, week. It's been quite chilly here as well. It's only in the lower 40's but the wind coming in off the sea, and the humidity, combine to make it pretty chilly. Also, here they don't have central heating in homes. We have a space heater and that's about it. So inside it's still pretty chilly. All the houses here are made out of concrete. Elder Roemer and I decided that if we introduced insulation to Albania, we'd become multi-millionaires! But all-in-all things are quite well here. One of the members here in Durrës told us that this year has been the coldest year in about 10 years. Also, one missionary told us that at this time last year they were out at the beach in shorts playing football, so this is just an Albanian cold snap I guess. We had a lesson with a family last night and they said that next week it's supposed to get super cold. It's supposed to drop below -15C {5°F}, but I'm not quite sure because I've heard a couple different things about the upcoming weather. Haha, that sounds like Rachel. {Even though she had a two-week school vacation, she procrastinated a writing assignment until the last minute.} How big was her assignment that she had to do? 

Yeah, so not a whole lot happened this last bit of the week. Probably the coolest thing that happened this last week was last Thursday evening. After emailing, we had quite a while to work without having any lessons planned. It was pretty cold, so not many people were out in the street, so we decided to go tracting, which is not something I readily suggest. Don't get me wrong, just tracting isn't my favorite finding method. I haven't found much success from tracting in my mission, so I'm not always excited when we have to do it as a last resort. However, we decided to go tracting. We picked an apartment building and we walked in. We took the elevator up to the top floor and started knocking on doors. The first door was opened by a man. He said that he was expecting friends to come over at any minute, but he said we were welcome to come back one day. I was actually very surprised with how friendly he was. We walked down the hall and we knocked on the second door. A man opened the door and we told him that we were missionaries. He said that he was Muslim, but then he said, "But it's a new year, so come in." So we sat down with him, his wife, and his two daughters. We talked about the Book of Mormon with them, and it was a very good lesson. We told them where the church was and they recognized it when we described it. They talked about how they always thought that it was a really beautiful building and they wondered what it was for. I was very happy with that lesson! I was very happy that we were accepted into someone's house to speak more about the Gospel. A plus about tracting on New Year's Day is that when you knock on someone's door, even if they aren't interested, they'll give you some leftover candy. We got so much candy and food from tracting on that day! It was almost like Halloween!

I'm very grateful for this experience, not because of the candy or anything like that. I'm grateful because the Lord knew that my confidence in tracting had been wavering. I believe that He led us to that apartment building so that we could have that wonderful lesson with that family. In doing so, we introduced a family to the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ, and at the same time, my confidence in tracting was strengthened. Now I've been a lot more willing to go tracting when we have to. I'm very grateful that the Lord cares for us enough that He'll give us successes like this in order to keep our minds and hearts open. When we close our minds or our hearts to something, we start to hinder the Work of God instead of pushing it along. I'm very grateful for a Loving Heavenly Father that cares about us and knows what to give us when we need something. I know that He knows all of us personally, and that He will bless us as long as we strive to keep His commandments.

Thank you so much for your love and support! I couldn't do it without you! Ju dua shumë! Kalofshi bukur! Javë të mbarë. Gëzuar vitin e ri, për shumë vjet! 

Me dashuri të madhe,

Elder Watson

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