Thursday, October 29, 2015

Questsa setimana era molto bene!


Questsa setimana era molto bene!

I can't believe I have been here for about a month already! The days go by so fast and the weeks even faster. I was able to do an exchange with my zone leader Anziano Mocellin in Verona last Thursday. We had a ton of fun and we were super busy all day. Verona is a biking city and all of our appointments were all super spread out so I was able to see some amazing things.

This is me in Verona

I also did an exchange with the zone leader in Brescia, which is an hour away from Milano. It was a lot of fun and I learned a lot from the elders in that city.

Trento is still beautiful and amazing. It rains a lot and it's getting pretty cold but I love this city!

I have been learning so much every single day. The language is coming along pretty well but I am far from fluent.

Verona and its beauty

This week we were supposed to get 21 lessons. Last week my trainer and I planned for a couple hours making sure we would be successful in getting all 21 lessons. We set up about 23 lessons for the week and we set out to work as hard as we ever had. After doing about everything we could, we were only able to get 16 lessons. That is still more than the standards of excellence but it wasn't 21!

When we weren't teaching people, and we did everything that we could, I felt like I didn't get the lessons because I didn't work hard enough.  But the reality was that the people we planned to teach had free agency to choose if they would go to the lesson or not. Relying on the free agency of others is not an easy thing to do but it teaches me to be patient when things don't go as planned.

Juliet's Balcony (as in Romeo and Juliet)

The French family we found and taught last week came to church and they loved it! A member here speaks French and was able to translate to them everything! The family is so happy and feel so blessed to know that Heavenly Father answered their prayers.

Roverto -a small town, which is in my area

The work he here is so wonderful! At the end of each day I am full of so much joy knowing that I am doing what the Lord wants me to be doing. I love seeing the gospel change lives! It truly works miracles.

I know that the work I am doing here is Heavenly Fathers work. I am so grateful to be a tool In it all. I have seen prayers answered and miracles happen each week. I am happier than ever, even after the most difficult days. At the end of the day, I know my Heavenly Father loves me and I know that what I am doing is right. I love you all and I love this amazing work!

This is me eating FuFu which is flour and water with a very questionable spicy stew.  It's a genuine African dish.  It was pretty good.  ha ha!
FuFu and Stew

 -Anziano Hogan

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Verona is amazing!


Ciao everyone, I had an awesome week again. I am learning so so much each day here. Last Thursday, my companion and I went to Mestre, which is the city where Venice is! I didn't have a chance to go to Venice but I was close. We were trained by our Mission President on everything we need to know as a new missionary in the Milano Mission.

My companion and me

President Dibb is such an amazing man. He is so smart and I learned so much from him.  My trainer and I didn't have that great of a week last week as far as lessons go but the President challenge me, along with all of the new missionaries, to get 21 lessons this week so we have
been working extra hard.

The language for me is coming along. I am definitely not fluent at all but I see myself improving each day. We teach lots of Africans and English speaking people so I am not able to get all of the practice I need, but I make my companion speak to me in Italian as often as he can.  I know I don't need to mention how good the food is here but I will anyways... It's amazing. My companion and I are going to buy a genuine Italian cook book so we can learn how to make some of the best food on earth.

Today was Pday and we hiked the Tre Cime mountains which are the mountains outside Trento and they are Amazing! Half of the hike was in the snow so it was pretty cold but so so worth it. Italy is such a beautiful place! Now I am on a train with my zone leader going to Verona. I am doing an exchange in Verona for the day tomorrow and I am so excited! Verona is amazing.

Tre Cime Mountains: We got to the top of this peak!!!

At the summit

I don't have that much time to write because we taught a lesson during out writing Time so I'll end with one last thing. Today we had an amazing miracle. Anziano Mocellin(the elder I am doing
the exchange with) and I taught a family from a French speaking part of Africa. They are members of the church but have not been to church or seen the missionaries for a year. Anziano Yee and I have not been able to teach them because we don't speak French. After our hike today we decided to have Anziano Mocellin call the family because he speaks French! After he called them he said we are teaching them in the next hour so we ran to catch a bus to teach this family. Anziano Mocellin
taught them in French and I have never seen a family more happy in my entire life. I did not understand really anything because they were all talking in French but the spirit was extremely powerful. I bore my testimony to them and he translated it to them. At the end of the lesson, the mother of the family told us that she had said a prayer this morning that she would find missionaries to teach her family. This was a true miracle. Her prayer was answered and Heavenly Father used us to be an answer to her prayer. I am so grateful that I could be a part of a miracle as amazing as this one. This family is now reuniting with the church and they have never seemed happier.

Words cannot describe how amazing this mission is. Of course it is so much hard work, but when I have experiences like this, The joy I feel is indescribable. My mission has already changed my life and I have been able to grow so much closer to Jesus Christ and what he did for us. I have been able to grow so much closer to my Heavenly Father as I have seen miracles happen first hand. I know this church is true with everything in me. I love you all and I am so grateful to be here.

Anziano Hogan

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

I love being out here!

Email me anytime!  William.hogan@myldsmail.net


Week 2 in Italy is out of the way. I am only one week into my transfer because the transfer started last Monday. This week was great. A lot went on! We had our zone training meeting last week which was awesome. We have a great zone up here in the North. I was able to do a scambio (exchange) in the city of Bolzano with an elder who has lived in Italy for 7 years and is originally from the Dominican Republic. His name is Anziano Sosa Correa and he is awesome! It was hard only speaking Italian for 24 hours but I learned so much! We taught 3 lessons in Italian and one of the guys we taught had no legs and only 3 fingers on each hand. He was an awesome guy and we talked a lot. I have been learning more and more of the language each day.  I am way better at understanding people but speaking is a totally different story. I'm getting there and I really can't wait to be fluent! I was able to bear my testimony in sacrament meeting here in my branch! It was scary to be honest but it felt so good! I was able to share what I wanted and the members loved that I got up and tried.

Beautiful Trento

In Trento, my trainer and I have been teaching mostly Africans which is always an adventure because their culture and way of speaking is so different from anything else. They are such great people. We have been teaching Italian people too and I love it!! Before I got out here, I thought that all the Italians would fight over who gets to feed the missionaries and we would be eating amazing food every night but I have learned it's a bit of the opposite. It has forced Anziano Yee and I to become professional chefs. I'm not going to lie, I have become quite the master at cooking.

Something really cool we do is English class. We do it every Wednesday and Saturday. I have about 8 students and they all love it so much. It is definitely something to look forward to.

Trento has been pretty awesome. It rains almost everyday and it is starting to get colder but it is still an extremely beautiful place. We are trying every day to do as much as we can to fulfill our purpose.

I learned something very valuable last Sunday as we were teaching a man named Brother L.  I learned was that we really are our first convert on the mission. When you teach someone the gospel and they say to you, "you are wrong, it is this way we are supposed to do things" you must be truly converted to the gospel in order to look someone in the eyes and testify that the things you say are true. Anyone can testify of things but not everyone can testify of things with the power of the spirit. And the spirit is our best friend when we teach. I know that I will have investigators who will have strong beliefs and hard hearts. With people like that, I need to be ready to testify with everything in me that what I am telling them is true. And I do know that I have given up my life at home for 2 years to teach others about the gospel.

I know that the true church was restored on the earth 200 years ago. I have spent a lot of time on my knees praying out here in the mission and I really do know that this church is true. I have had some of the most satisfying and enjoyable days of my life here in Trento. When I get back to the apartment feeling exhausted and tired, knowing I put everything I had into sharing the gospel, I am so extremely happy. I love being out here! I love being a missionary. I have seen it bless many people's lives including mine. The best thing we can ever do for ourselves is read the Book of Mormon and pray about it. I promise anyone who does this will find out for themselves that it is the word of God and another testament of Jesus Christ. I love you all and I love this work. Till next week.

International Lake Garda Marathon


Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Willy in Trento, Italy

Buongiorno tutti!!!

Here I am in Italy!!

Email address:

My Trento address is:
Via Fogazzaro 3
38122 Trento TN

 Mission Home:
Via Antonio Gramsci 13/2
20090 Opera MI

My companion Anziona Yee and me

These last couple weeks have the most exhausting and most exciting weeks of my entire life. I am finally a real missionary serving in Italy. My dreams have come true. I have a million things to talk about but I don't have a ton of time so I'll do the best I can to tell you all about it!

Last Tuesday all 19 missionaries and I left early in the morning for the airport. We had so much fun being in the real world as new missionaries. All of the traveling went super well except for our flight to Frankfurt which was delayed 3 hours and we were forced to wait and sit on the plane. That all thankfully worked out and we got to Frankfurt just fine and hopped on a plane to MILAN!!

We arrived at the Milano airport and were greeted by our awesome mission President and his wife. We were pretty late so we didn't have a chance to proselyte at the Duomo which was kind of sad. After some orientation meetings and an interview we had the most amazing dinner ever. It was an awesome day but a very, very tiring day because we all basically didn't sleep for a total of 28 hours! We got some great sleep thankfully and a few hours after we woke up we were assigned to our new area and trainers!!

I was the last one to get assigned which was so brutal because I was so anxious. Sure enough I get assigned to Anziano Yee (who has been out for only 6 months) in the town of Trento! Trento is a medium sized town with lots of fairly quiet and devout catholics. The members here, which number to about 35 are some wonderful people. We are located very far up North near Austria. I hear it can get pretty cold here and it snows here sometimes. I don't really like the cold that much but I imagine this place gets sooo beautiful when it snows. I haven't seen that much of Italy but, too me, Trento has got to be one of the most beautiful places in the world. I got so lucky to serve here!

 I was able to watch conference! But mostly in Italian and only 3 sessions. I loved how they emphasized the importance of the family. The family here is such and important topic to the Italians. We live just outside of the downtown part of the city. Our apartment is super nice and big! There used to be 4 missionaries in the apartment but they reduced Trento to only 2 missionaries so we got lucky. The food here is AMAZING!! It is absolutely unreal. We have the
best snacks from the store and not to mention the gelato we get about once a day. I am in food heaven here. It's a good thing we walk a lot because I would be a fat missionary if we didn't.

 So my companion and I have been doing quite a lot of work and we are busy almost 100% of the day. There are a few refugee camps here with lots of Africans so most of our investigators are African! They are some of the coolest, nicest, loving people I have ever met. A lot of them speak broken English or pigeon so I have had to learn some terms to make gospel messages and principles more clear. It is so awesome. Right now, we really don't have any pure Italian investigators because they can be very hard to teach. Trust me we try every day as we go tracting and do casa in casa (knocking on doors). We do have many Italian speaking Investigators from different countries who are so

The language for me is coming along. When I was in the MTC I thought I knew a good amount of Italian, but I was so wrong. They speak 1,000mph here and It is really hard to understand. My companion is super patient and very  hard working so he helps me every second with the language. I learn more and more each day and the language is coming along!! He has made me in charge (most of the time) of contacting people on the streets so I can practice my introductions. He has also told me that ever since I got here, he has seen a lot more tender mercies happen. For example, He was teaching me how to do casa
in casa and the very first house we buzzed, and someone opened the gate and someone came out  to talk to us. He said that never has he ever seen or heard of that happening. I Love being a missionary!! Working all day, bring the light of this gospel in to peoples lives is the most amazing experience ever.

This city is so beautiful and amazing with so much potential for the gospel. It really is not easy being a missionary in a place where the Italians are pretty tough to budge when it comes to discussing the church. We constantly get rejected but we keep on moving just waiting for that one person that will be willing to talk to us. Heavenly Father has blessed me so much with so many things. I hope this email wasn't all over the place. I love it here so much. It
gets hard at times but Heavenly Father helps so much. I know that this is the only and true church. Seeing the gospel change the lives of the people I teach is absolutely priceless. Till next week everyone,