Tuesday, July 8, 2014

E Allora?

Well, I guess all good things come to an end, right?  Sono tornata a casa perche' mi sono rotta la caviglia...  :(  (I have returned home because I broke my ankle.)  When I was in Italy, I was getting lots of mixed messages from Doctors, like "Oh, it's a hair-line fracture," "Caspita!  There are 6 hair-line fractures!" "Don-t worry, it's just a distortion!" And, "Here!  Take these injections for 20 days!  They will prevent blood clots."  I felt a bit shuffled around in all the confusion, and in the end, the best option was to return home because I would have had to wear a heavy cast for about 20 days in the field, then do rehabilitation... The list goes on...  So, because I only had a few months left, coming home and getting things treated right seemed more logical than being ineffective in the field.  

Quindi!  I am home and I found out what is really wrong and what I will have to do about healing my ankle:

1- It is a hair-line fracture in the Tibia and I will have to get it re-casted in the next couple days.

2- After getting it re-casted, I will be in the cast for about 4-6 weeks.

3- I do not have to take those weird injections they gave me in Italia! (Yay!) And I found out that I actually didn't have to take them in the first place...

I guess I should tell you the story now, huh?  It all started last P-day when we had finished Internet and had gone to the Castle.  We were on our merry way to begin the tour, we signed the sheet to be placed into the tour group, and everything seemed great.  Or so we thought...  One of the soldiers stationed at the castle lead us to another tour group that had already started, and when we saw them, we followed them down the stairs.  The stairs were very steep and they were the most uneven stairs that I have ever walked down, and as I was walking, I thought to myself, "Wow!  If Sorella Cherrington lived here, she wouldn-t survive these stairs everyday!"  Shortly after that thought buzzed through my head, I tripped in a hole in the stairs, falling onto a hand-rail, hitting my nose, and breaking my ankle...  Lesson learned?  Be careful when you walk in old castles.  And if you would not have been able to survive it in old times, you surely won't make it out without an injury in these days.  

E allora?  Cosa diciamo?  I loved the mission because I got to work with great people and I have made eternal friendships.  I am thankful for each of my friends in Italy and I can't wait to Facebook/Skype them ASAP!  :D  If any of you out there are considering a mission, I would tell you that it had been the craziest, wildest ride of my entire life, and I faced so many difficulties that I cannot fully describe with words where my strength came from to face them.  But I can tell you that, with the strength of the Lord, anything can be done.  So, you potential missionaries, here is my advice: pray and fast about your decision and prepare yourself for the hardest thing of your life.  I would also like to say though that "No good thing comes easy," and you will certainly be blessed on your mission for every hardship that you have to overcome.  The Lord loves His missionaries and the people they serve.  You will surely feel that love on your mission if you do your best to "Bee the Best you can Bee," as President and Sister Waddoups have said.

I suppose this is the end then of my adventures as a full-time missionary in Italia.  However, it is not the end of my being a missionary at heart, nor is is the end of my love of the Italian language, culture and, above all, the people of Italy.  I will never forget my mission and it will always be a huge part of who I have become today and who I will yet become in the future.  In bocca al lupo a tutti e buona missione!  

-Sorella Corey Cherrington

Monday, June 30, 2014

E 'solo attraverso la grazia di Gesù Cristo che possiamo essere salvati

This week went pretty well!  I loved the Serata Benessere, and helping out there, and being able to say goodbye to my good friend, Bianca.  :)  She and I have become such good buddies, and now she is in the US for the time being with her boyfriend, _____.  I hope everything is going well for her.  Also, in general, it has been an amazing week, seeing all of the ward members so often for the Sagra, (festival) for church, and we all did a mostra (exhibition) together on the Lungo mare (waterfront) pathway.  I drew the Gospel of Jesus Christ with Sorella Spencer (awesome new comp!  :D) and we saw quite a bit of success.  Fratello Miccoli came (love that guy!) and he talked about the mostra (exhibition) in church the next day, and encouraged the ward to get out and help us the next time because, "Le ginnochia della Sorella Cherrington facevano male perchè si doveva inginocchiare da sola per disegnare sul lensuolo!" (The knees of Sister Cherrington hurt because she had to kneel draw the gospel) He is a fantastic ward missionary, and so are the rest of our ward missionaries!  Our ward really is just great! I absolutely love Taranto, and I am glad to be here for this next transfer (going on number 4 here!  :D).  

And, showing Sorella Spencer around and seeing tons of people that I already know has been crazy, and is making real to me the fact that I really know un sacco di persone qua, and I have friends all over the place.  I hope to pass those bonds to Sorella Spencer so that everyone can be friends with the missionaries per sempre! (forever)  :D Annnd, transfers were sooo hectic!  But it ended up being fun because I got to stay in the Bari Sorelle's apartment for a couple days, and I helped them prepare the apartment for the 2 new sorelle that would be coming in there.  There, I got to see Sorelle Viazzo, Anderson, and Fossa.  It was nice to be able to give them a hand, but we were all sooo tired after the transfers because of the weird orario (schedule) that we had to follow to get people from the trains.  I also went on a baby scambio (exchange) with Sorella Viazzo where we went to a less-active's house, only to find that there were 4 Anziani there already!  Lol, it was a funny couple of days.

Also, last P-day was probably the best P-day of my entire mission because we got to spend it with Giuseppe and Ida and Marianna Pastano, people I love.  I will always always always be friends with them all, and I really hope that I can serve them and all the other people here to the best of my ability and no less.  So what did we do together?  Not even that much!  We walked to centro and to the Lungo Mare (waterfront) together, got Focaccia and Gelato, went to Zara, stopped in the coolest store ever with tons of comic books n' stuff.  That day, I re-learned the important life lesson that it doesn't matter at all what you do, but it's who you chose to spend your time with that really matters.  

Also, things are still going good with Robby and Martin.  But Martin went out of town to look for work and could not yet find anything. :/  I felt really bad for him too because he almost got one job as a nanny, but they ended up not hiring him because he is not a woman.  We will be praying for him though so he can get some work to pay for his school books this year.

Welp, that is all I have for now.  Sorry I don't have much, but this week was really long because of all the transfers and etc.  Love you guys!  :D  I know this transfer will be a good one!


Sorella Corey Cherrington

The Sisters giving a lesson no doubt!  

Ward Mission Leaders with the Missionaries and two members it looks like! 

Beautiful Peacock!  

Some Lovely Peacocks

Members at the Exhibition on the Waterfront

At the Exhibition on the Waterfront

A really nice text message from a member to Corey.  I wish I could text Corey!!!

These Elders looked like they are ready to go fishing?  Maybe not!!! 

Sunset in Taranto

Some awesome Elders giving a lesson about Family!!! 

Sorella Cherrington's little brothers in Italy!!!

The exhibit on the waterfront

This is Corey's friend who came to the US to be with her boyfriend.

Emergency and Disaster Preparedness Exhibit

Emergency and Disaster Preparedness Exhibit

Missionaries with some lovely people on the waterfront

Another awesome exhibit!!

Bianca and Corey

Fishing Exhibit

Lotsa Noodles!!

I love this one because Elder Turner looks as if he is in a food coma!!! LOL 

This lovely woman is very small, but probably has one of the biggest testimonies in church!!

Monday, June 23, 2014

This week of miracles

This week was such a beautiful week!  :D We saw the famiglia Albano after we got back from Bari, and they are doing pretty great.  They are facing hard times in their lives, and are having a tough time with reading the scriptures, but they are always praying.  It has been kind of a wild ride teaching them because, at times there is so much chaos in their house.  But they are some of my favorite people here to work with because we are able to teach them about the gospel, and their faces seem to light up with deeper understanding every time that we go over there.  We need to think of a way to help get them reading though!  :)

Also, we started teaching someone new this week!  His name is Roberto, but we call him Robby because he comes to English Course, so we gave him a nickname that we would use back home in the states.  So, Robby is one of our English course students in the Intermedio class, and he is so fantastic!  He tries really hard to get better and better at English ogni classe, and he is so sincere.  I think that, in part, it was his sincerity that prompted us to start teaching him.

AND!  Okay, the most important thing of the week:  Martin Manole rocks my socks!  Lol, he is our friend who lives in Taranto and we have been teaching him about the church for a while.  He found mine and Sister Bradford's blogs, and has been reading them, searching for his name!  Haha.  I didn't write much about him before, but now that he told me I could write about him, I will!  He's seriously such a great person though.  He is 16 and he has a strong testimony of the church.  He really wants to be baptized, but cannot yet do so because he needs the permission of his mom.  I have faith in him though, that he will one day be baptized.  Martin is one of the strongest, kindest people I have met on my mission, and I know that we will be buddies for life!  

Comunque!  This week, we actually saw lots of success.  The Lord is blessing us to find new people and to get our finding fire back (We lost it for a bit because we are both getting tired as we grow "older" in the mission).  But now, we are really rocking it and are following the guidance of Heavenly Father in our work.  I know that we will see even more success next week.  There is no doubt in my mind. 

Annnnnd, I don't know what it is lately but I love English Course more than ever!  I love our students soooooo much!  And I am learning how to teach both of our classes well (me and Sorella Bradford switch betweeen them).  I thought advanced went really bene this week because I kept good command over the class.  Usually they have tendencies to get off track because they have a lot of random questions about things like "How do you take out a loan in the US?"  or, "How do you do a mortgage in the US", sometimes even, "If I want to live as a homeless person in the states, how do I find a homeless shelter and get free medicine?", and just other life questions that I really don't know the answers to all the time.  BUT this time, I had such a firm hand over the lesson and I was able to teach it bene without distractions!  I felt really accomplished!  And Intermedio was great as usual.  They are so open to learn and we always get to play silly games together to get us talking together fluently in English.  The other day, I made up a game where one student had to be the computer (we were talking about Computers) and tell the owner of the computer what was wrong.  Then the owner had to talk to a technician to get the problem fixed.  The class loved it, and we all laughed so much together about it because at one point, the computer "had a fork lodged in the screen!"  It was so great!  Our friend Giuseppe got a real kick out of it too!  He said, "Sorella, è un spettacolo!"  Him and his wife, Ida, have been really good sports about all the games and they always make it 10 times funner to be in class!  You can have a great lesson plan but it doesn't work unless the class is receptive and ready to roll up their sleves and learn and participate.  :)

Also, I went on the biggest miracle scambio ever to Crotone where I got to see the Sorella Kimball again and I was able to serve for a bit with the Sorella Rost!  :D  Now, why was this a scambio of miracoli?  Because the Sorelle had planned a total of 3 appointments for our companionship and they all fell through.  Why is that a miracle?  I'll tell you: we ended up doing finding the rest of the evening and we seriously found sooo many people who were ready for the gospel.  At the end of the day, we found a total of 15 contacts (some being potential families!).  It was one of the most miracle-packed days of my mission, and it was a huge blessing that Sorella Rost and I got to experience that together.  I also refound my love for finding people to teach.

Also, as we were going home from Crotone, it looked like we would miss our train.  We rushed to the station after a bit of walking and I said a silent prayer to myself, saying, "Heavenly Father, please bless that the train will be 5 minutes late."  We got to the station, thought we would miss the train, and then we heard an announcement that the train would be exactly 5 minutes late!  We see so many miracles every day here.

Welp, that is all for now!  I hope that you all have a good week! 

Sorella Cherrington

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Uno non può sapere quanto sia importante avere più paia di scarpe comode per svolgere una missione per il Signore.

There should be some great pictures for the blog this week!  I took tons!  And they are of some pretty cool things.  I feel like I should take more pics because pictures really do "say 1,000 words," as the old cliché suggests.  

Allora!  It is soooo good to talk to you guys again this week!  This week went really great.  We started it out with our English course end-of-12-week party!  We had Just Dance set up, thanks to the awesome Fratello Chitano!  And we were able to have fun with the English course students in a more relaxed environment.  I cannot tell you how fun it was!  I made macaroni salad for it, and some of them really liked it, like Giancarlo who said, "I love this!  I had seconds!"  But others said, "Sorella, Italians don't like onions very much. It would be perfect without them", or "Italians just aren't used to this stuff."  Lol, it interesting how different our tastes are a volte, and those things like peanut butter taste like gross "slime" to them!

Annnnd we also went to pranzo at Giuseppe and Ida's house where we got to see a bunch of comic books, action figures, GIANT pictures of Superman, etc.  They are soooo great!  :D  They are some of the funnest people we know here in Taranto.  I really feel like we are friends with them and that, someday, they will be baptized!  I mean, it is not like they have been simps for 10 years yet, but I think that they are just going Piano piano with the gospel.  I saw a good sign the other night when I asked another student to take the lessons, and he accepted!  Giuseppe asked me, "Did you ask him if he wanted to be a member?"  I told him, "I asked him if he wanted to know more about our message."  Then he asked, "Did the man accept?" Me: "yes!" Giuseppe, "Buono!"  It was fantastic.  :) 

On top of that, we have been seeing our menoattivi still, and we have been looking for new people to teach as well.  We do ricerca and publicity always ("Talk to everyone," like it says in Preach my Gospel) in order to get new people coming to English Course or to make new friends, but it seems that everyone is busy these days and the contacts that we make end up not being able to meet with us. I think it has a lot to do with this season being the time when everyone is doing their first comunione e le cresime.  This city is a very catholic tradition-based place, and their religion is basically their culture.  Even church members are going to see the first communions of their relatives!  Everyone seems so busy.  But we can do this!  We can find some new friends.  I have been getting a feeling to go back to Piazza Garibaldi to meet new people too.  I am excited to have a very successful week this next week.

Other than that, we have been on the hunt for good shoes because all I have in these days are a pair I found in a "death closet" (the closet where missionaries who are leaving the city or the mission leave old clothes and such), my old, worn moccasins that are basically slippers by now and some old sandals that hurt really bad.  Buuuut now, I have new shoes that we were able to find in Bari!  And they are perfect!  :D  We were able to get permission from President to come here and look for shoes, and I am so glad that we did!  :D  I am telling you this mostly because I wanted to advise future missionaries to make getting good, comfortable shoes the first priority.  Even before you decide what luggage you will bring, what shirts you will wear, or anything else!  Because you really do walk everywhere 24/7, and it is so important to have good shoes.  Another thing I would tell future Sister missionaries specifically is that lots of cool skirts are necessary for hot summer weather.  Bring skirts that you like and that will be practical for baking hot summer weather.  

Comunque!  We also went over to the Kovacs family house yesterday, and I am so glad that we did!  We got to know their family much better and we will be able to help them out more in the near future.  Sorella Kovacs is from Romania, and Fratello Kovacs is Hungarian.  He does not speak much Italian, so it was fun communicating with him.  :)  At their house, we made a title of Liberty flag (like Captain Moroni in the Book of Mormon! :D).  Sorella Kovacs really seemed to like it and we enjoyed making something special for their family tutti insieme.  We love them so much!  We love everyone here, really.  I love the people in Italy.

Inoltre, I have some...

Fun facts!  :D
 In Italy, they use a lot of words that we use like "feeling", "hamburger", "computer", "Bar", etc.  They also call hot dogs "Wurstel". 

Ciao for now, Famiglia!  :D  Love you!

-Sorella Cherrington

Sunday, June 8, 2014

"E noi sappiamo che tutte le cose cooperano al bene di quelli che amano Dio, i quali sono chiamati secondo il suo disegno." -Romani 8:28

Sooooo, this week, Brendo got baptized!  It waas just about one of the coolest baptismal services that I have seen.  There were soooo many people there (especially because Brendo has been enthusiastically inviting people for weeks now!  Haha, he's great.)  We got to take some pictures with him, and the baptism just went so good.  :)  Annnd after Sorella Chiara Mazzolari gave a testimony at his baptismal service, he made her give him a hug.  It was so lovely.   I remember thinking, "I wish I could hug my friend, Brendo too!" (We have rules about not hugging members of the opposite gender)  But after the baptism, I handed him a present that Sorella Bradford and I had prepared for him, and he hugged me.  I did not know what to do because I was not supposed to hug him, but I was just so proud of him, so as he gave me his sweet little Brendo hug, I patted his back.  That kid is like a little Bro to me, and I feel so grateful to have met him.  I am certain that he will be one of the strong youth in the Taranto Ward from this point on!

Annnnd we have been having some really great experiences this week with teaching Menoattivi (less actives).  It has been such a great, spiritual experience because they are soooo close to being strong, active members in the church.  It's only that they have a few things that they need help sorting out. This week, I had one of the best experiences of my mission with a Menoattiva named Fia on my 2nd scambio with Sorella Hibbert :)  (yah, we got to do another scambio together after Zone conference!).  I had heard a lot about Fia in the past from Sorella Hibbert's e-mails home and from the other missionaries here in Taranto.  It's kind of crazy because I had always felt like I was supposed to teach Fia at one point of another, but this made no sense when the other Sorelle were here because they were teaching Fia.  POI, when they left, we undertook all of their work, thus being responsible for teaching and helping our friend, Fia.  It had been a couple months without seeing her a causa di one complication or another, but when Sorella Hibbert had come for Zone Conf. we were able to go together to Fia's house because she used to go there all the time!  UAU!  We went, and it was beautiful beautiful beautiful!  Fia is one of the coolest people I have ever met!  :D  She has a really interesting story, is from Samoa, is a star tennis player with an entire shelf filled with tennis trophies, and she loves the missionaries!  I loved that visit tio her house.

We felt a wonderful spirit being together because Fia has a strong testimony.  I loved watching Finding Faith in Christ with her, and teaching with Sorella Hibbert as a more experienced missionary was so nice!  It was our first time teaching together since being greenies.  Also, Fia gave us ice cream and cookies and put on a music video of "Sloop John B." which ended up playing three times because we didn't know how to work their TV very well... Haha, and before we watched our film, Fia showed us this film of her dancing and singing at an international cultures get together  they had at the big catholic church in town.  It was really funny because Fia was laughing hysterically at the part where she is singing and dancing and was having so much fun just being her in front of the crowd that was there!  She is so great!  I can't wait to go see her again!

Hmmmm.... What else?  One of our Menoattivi, Simona is officialy back to church!  XD  She has been working soooo hard to come, and she is doing a really good job of getting back into the swing of things.  She's so kind and so awesome too!  She has two little kids, and we're pretty good buddies with them as well.  :)  We did a lesson at her house the other day with Sorella Mazzolari, and it was really great because Sorella Mazzolari was able to help Simona feel loved and that she does not have to go through any trial alone.  Lessons with less-actives this week have been a really great experience, and we are seeing much progress with each of them!

Well, that is all I've got for this week.  Vi voglio tanto bene, famiglia mia!

Sorella Corey Cherrington

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Questa è una dura lezione, perseverando sino alla fine

This week was great!  :D  I absolutely loved it for many reasons (that doesn't mean that it wasn't hard though).  Well, the summer sun had finally arrived!  And it is getting hotter and hotter by the day.  The other day, when we went to Lama to go look for a menoattiva called "Fia", we got a bit lost and had to walk in the sun for what seemed like dayayyyyyyys!  Lol, we started seeing mirages, and we both got sunburned a bit.  And, I don't know why, but I think that that morning, however frustrating it was, was one of my favorite mornings here in Taranto.  We had tried so hard to accomplish our goal, but we just could not find Fia's house.  The point was, though, that we had tried.  And I felt really accomplished just having done our best to do what we had planned.  In the end, we found that the address that we had for Fia was messed up, so that was why we could not find her.  One of those peculiar things that happens on the mission, you know.  It was a great experience all the same.

Annnd, our friend, Brendon, is getting baptized!  Here is his story (have I already told you all?  I don't remember :).  So, Brendon is a contact that we found through a young man that we invited to English course from the bus.  We invite this other young man, Francesco, and he came with Brendo one day.  Then, Brendo began coming by himself, and he wanted to attend the advanced class (the class that we teach) so he could have "full-immersion" in the language.  And, one day, after we had all read the Book of Mormon together as a class, he approached me and asked me, "Can I have a copy of that book?"  From that point onward, he became very involved in the church, came to the Easter activities, and started meeting with the Anziani (we passed him off to them because we thought it would be a better fit for a 16 year old boy to talk and be friends with other young men).  Annnnd now, he will be baptized within the next couple of weeks!  XD  And he is suuuuper excited about his baptism!  We are pretty good buddies, so he comes and tells me things like, "Hey!  Sister Cherrington!  I am getting baptized on the 1st of June!  My baptism will be so great!"  He really is the best!  He reminds me a little bit of Joesph Gonzales back in California.  :) 

Otherwise, our work has been a bit sparse lately, and we have been doing a lot of work with less-actives, with the members, and finding in general.  It has actually been really great because we are getting to know all the members better and we are building a support system for the work to go really well in the near future.  Maybe we don't see all of the results now but, in missionary work, there are a lot of results that one never sees!  

Oh!  And we are becoming better friends with a half-active family.  They are seriously the coolest!  But, there are some things that we will have to work on with them.  The Dad loves the church, but he does not like a lot of people who come to church, nor does he go in d'accordo with many of the dirigenti in the church...  But we love him and his family, and we hope to help him see that, even if there are imperfect people in the church, we can be good examples ourselves and we must remember that the church itself is perfect, even if the members still have a lot of work to go towards perfection.  Each of us has a ton of work to do.  If we were prefect, we would not have to have the opportunity of this life to work our hardest to become better people.  The word "perfect" means "complete."  I wouldn't say that any human being is "complete" or perfect when it comes to this business of Eternal Progression.  We all have work to do!  :)  

And, I just wanted to say thank you to all of you guys who have sent me letters, e-mails, ecc.  It is really encouraging to feel your guys' love.  Especially in hard times, this helps me.  I just got a package from Ms. J the other day, and I was so happy to see her Italian-translated letter that she had written for me.  :) I love her so much. And, famiglia, thank you for all you do.  I really feel like I don't tell you that enough.  I know it is hard to set aside time in your busy lives to send me e-mails or letters, so I want to tell you all how grateful I am for you.  Ma and Dad and Andy, I am especially grateful for you guys, and for all the faith, love, and support that you give me.  Tell Sisiter Chisam too that I am so thankful for her letters and notes every now and again.  I love you all, and I can't wait to see you all again someday soon.  

Vi voglio taaaaaanto bene,

Sorella Corey Cherrington

A wonderful man sent this picture to me via email and praised the
Sorella for all the hard work that they have to endure every day!  

Jesus Statue in Taranto


Corey and her companion made this lovely desert

Another beautiful creation from the Sorella


I believe this is the young man that got baptized today! 


Jesus in Taranto

These walls are closing in on me!

Young man baptized today and Sorella Bradford & Cherrington