Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Deep Thoughts

Dear Family:

Elder Bills?!?  That's my grandpa!!  haha He is the man!  Love that kid. (In the mission, they all feel each other is family.  So, the elders will attach "family labels" to those who they work with.  In other words, I think Elder Bills probably trained Elder Aiono, who is Elder Fischetti's "dad".  I hope I have this straight!  I mentioned to Thomas that I have been involved with a missionary mom network, and had heard from Elder Bill's mom).

Anyways man, what a sad email haha. Tell everyone to pick their heads up and enjoy life!  (This week there was some sad news we had to share with Elder Fischetti regarding the health and challenges of some family and friends.)  A lot of people dont enjoy the journey to their goals!  That's what life is about!  Enjoying every moment.  If you're not loving life, you're just wasting time.  I know I can't speak from experience, but we have the gift of agency, we choose whether to be offended or angry or sad. We have control, if you have a dream nothing stops you from achieving it...just yourself. Creativity is key.  Being able to actually think.  The world is losing the skill of thinking.  I have realized that is a strength I have because I tend to always be in deep, deep thought.  It is a skill, but a downer at the same time.  The world is teaching us to memorize and spit it out a.k.a. tests at school.  That will soon change.  Schools will no longer work the way they work. I have many ideas on how to change it and I think later in my life that is one thing I want to work for.  I have an invention journal out here and I don't ever think of it, but sometimes an idea just strikes me.  The people who think different are the ones who change the world. Think outside of the box?  That's impossible, for us there isn't even a box.  Keep your heads up, guys.  Life is full of blessings.  Exercise everyday!  That is the most important part of mental health.  Physical exercise.  Don't skip it.  As soon as you wake it.  Whether for 30 mins. or an hour, just get the blood flowin' and put some strain on your body. and then work out your brain!  We need to constantly be reading, thinking, and creating.  When you are faced with a choice, try to think of as many different solutions as possible.  It fuels creativity.  Your mind will grow and you will be happier and more succesful in life in general.
(Is this my son talking?  Glad he has been listening...)

So miracles are happening!  We have 6 baptismal dates so far and a lot more to come!  Miller and I are just destroying it!  Every night we just collapse at our house!  So we spoke in sacrament meeting with Jack Church yesterday.  I spoke on missionary work.  I related it to ocean fishing and how we check our gear - fishing rods, bait, ropes and what not.  But as members of the church, we need to check for more for when the storms come, such as life jackets, flares, emergency boats, radios and what not.  We need to check our testimonies, our conversion, our desire to grow, our scripture reading, our spiritual health.  But as missionaries, we need to do much more.  I said that like the Coast Guard, when most boats are coming in, we are going out.  We are God's Coast Guard.  We need to have double and triple the gear.  We cannot leave any gear on shore by partying or fooling around, or not reading scriptures, or not caring about this gospel.  I bore testimony of friends that came home early and said..It is not worth it.  I couldn't help but cry out of love for the youth out here. I said, it is not worth it because in a few months into your mission, you will be sitting in the mission president's office because you are not worthy to serve.  Jack said I did really good.  I was totally speaking from the spirit.  It just worked.  We spoke for 15 mins each.  The spirit was so strong at that meeting.  I wish you could have heard it!  

Anyways!  Elder Miller and I set goals each week for numbers and we blow them up every time!  We surpass the standard of excellence!  We got a call from the AP's (assistants to the president - they are missionaries in high leadership positions) they congratulated us on our hard work and desire to serve.  

Man, I love my mission.  Mom, it's the best!  It really is!  Can't wait to skype on Christmas!!! We are skyping at Jack's house if I dont get transferred!!  He's the man!  He was an amazing missionary!  In his talk, he said you learn how to deal with hard companions, you can ask Elder Miller about that. haha  It was so funny, but then he said no, Elder Fischetti touched my heart and he will never know how much he means to me and he teared up!  Can you believe that?  I didn't know he cared about me that much!  I love it!  He is like an older brother to me! We have been riding bikes and it's so fun riding through puddles and off jumps and stuff haha.

But the mission is the best thing I've ever done.  I've never felt so accomplished and successful.  But at the same time, I've never felt so rejected and diminished.  But that's what makes the mission awesome!  You learn to bounce back and hit it 10x harder.  When you knock on 100 doors one day and don't get 1 answer, that doesn't mean you shouldn't get up and do it all again.  I love my mission!  It's the best!

But I love you guys!  Hope you have a better week this week!  Stay safe and stand strong!

Elder Fischetti

"Sacrifice is key. The Lord will not deal with you on any other basis. It is the key to controlling the powers of heaven."

"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain." 

Monday, December 3, 2012

A Week of Miracles

Wowowow four months!!!  Time flies!  (I wrote to him that I can't believe it has already been four months - he doesn't usually count!)

Yes, of course I am keeping up with Cad, mom.  He is doing great and we are going to the temple with a bunch of the youth, all of the families we are close to basically. The Hills are excelling as usual. They are all ready to be baptized and are continuing to grow. They have many people in the ward watching out for them. 

This week has been the best week of my life.  It's amazing what obedience, being unified, and having a strong work ethic can achieve.  We see miracles every single day.  Literally.  So we have so many new investigators, I will tell you about the Fishers.  I have been praying for them for a long time.  They are "my mission family".  They have literally made my mission. I have always hoped and prayed I can teach a family just like ours was 11 1/2 years ago. When we knocked on their door, the wife was SO happy.  We went in and mom, they are the exact same ages and fall in the same order as our family was when dad was taking the discussions.  The mom is very similiar to you.  She is a strong member and goes to church while the husband goes to Catholic church!!  Mom, it's the exact same situation as our family. The other night, I bore a powerful testimony of those missionaries that changed my life and our family's life forever.  I couldn't help but choke up a little bit.  I then told him that if he wants the most successful and joyful life possible, to follow his wife.  I continued to tell of my conversion and how I know this church is true.  When I was finished, this big truck driver was in tears!  Holy cow, the Spirit works on people like no other!!  He didn't speak to us the first lesson and not up until that experience.  He then opened up!!  I asked him to be baptized and he said YES!!!  I teared up because it reminded me of Dad when he was baptized and how special that is to me.  He said he will have a hard time explaining it to his parents because they are Catholic, so I told him how it worked for Dad and he feels more confident talking to them.  I am so thankful for them!  Man, I can't believe how much I have grown.  I am so much stronger in the gospel than I ever dreamed of being.  

We are speaking on Sunday in Jack's ward.  (Jack works with the missionaries in his area and is their biggest fan! haha He is very good to them.)  I am excited.  We are speaking about missionary work!!  My favorite!  It's going to be a little emotional because of how much my mission means to me, but as Coach Serpe said, "play with emotion, but don't get emotional."

Man, another special experience was with Curtis.  He is 60 and his beloved wife passed away a few months ago.  He hasn't left his house since.  He was telling us how we can't speak because we never lost someone we were so close to.  Elder Miller (his companion) then spoke up with a meek voice and said... "Sir, I lost my best friend, my Dad, right before my mission".  It was quiet for a whole minute!!  Elder Miller couldn't speak, so he told me to (yes, telepathic connections).  I said, "Curtis, Elder Miller would not leave his mom home to take care of 6 kids and work and everything else that comes along with life if he did not KNOW this church was true.  It was quiet again.  Curtis was in shock!  We both bore powerful testimonies and left.  

It's amazing how two 19 year olds can be so powerful through the Lord.  It's nothing we do or nothing special about us, we just know our calling.  Elder Miller and I are so united!  When we talk, it just works off of each other!  His strengths are my weaknesses and my strengths are his weaknesses.  I love it!  We are meant to be companions.  

I love having the Lord on our side.  It's amazing.  A man we stopped to visit and had a great  experience with also worked for President Smith a while ago!  Yes, our old mission president in NY.  We are stopping at his house today!!  I am very excited!  Mom, I LOVE MY MISSION.  At first I thought, this is going to be a long 2 years, now it's I don't know if I'm going to be able to go home.  I love the trials most of all.  I've never been so rejected and shut down in my life, but I love it.  It just gives me more room to grow.  

The lessons I am learning here are preparing me for life after the mission as well.  In marriage, in my job, in everything!  You really learn perseverance as a missionary.  I am so thankful for my ADD also.  It allows me to think differently and apply it in ways some people may not see.  It's also hard, so it's all about taking advantage of the pros and forgetting about the bad sides of it.  I have learned such good study and application skills!  When I get home, I am going to get straight A's.  Just study hard!  I can do it now!  I can sit down and study for 2 hours in a row and really put my mind to it!  

Man, I am so thankful I am out here.  My life is already totally altered because of it and I've only been out 4 months.  The Stake President came to teach with us one night!!!  Now he is giving us referrals to people he works with and everything!!  It's so exciting dahhhh!!
I was biking the other day through all of the puddles!  Our bikes have fenders so you can do that stuff, Jack said he saw us riding and me on a bike is like a rat on acid. haha  Woops. Don't worry, I only let my crazy side out when it's appropriate.  I am serious and grown up most of the time.  See what happens on a mission is you grow up pretty fast.  I am so excited to apply all I am learning to my life after the mission as well!  In business, in school, in relationships, just everything!  Wow, whoever doesn't serve a mission is crazy.  

Oh Ezra, a foster boy that was staying at Jack's house, left last week. :(  He was adorable!!  When he was leaving, he sang a song, "I hope they call me on a mission so I can be like Elder Schetti!"  That's what he calls me.  It was so cute!  Man, I love my mission!  It really is the best 2 years!  No one said it was easy, but it is the best.  To be honest, this is the hardest thing I have ever done in my entire life.  But that's the beauty of it.  A mission is an intense period of personal growth and reflection.  Aww man, but I love this time out here.  Transfers are coming up the week before Christmas, so please start sending your mail to the mission office until you hear otherwise! ok?  We are opening our presents at Jack's house Christmas morning woohoo!!  

But I love you guys!  I am glad to hear you are all doing well! I hope you continue to push!  Be an example to the rest of the world.  Be safe!  Love you all!!

Elder Fischetti

Logic will get you from A to B, but imagination can get you anywhere. 

November's End

 Thanksgiving #1 with the Bucks!
 TicTacToe in the Snow
 For times they need a little competition...
 New dog? jk He said this Saint Bernard is huge.
From Left: Elder Pace (his BFF and a sweet AP), Elder Miller (his "real brother"), 
Elder "where'd you get that tie" Fischetti and Elder Braby (his "spiritual brother")