Thursday, December 22, 2016

Buon Natale a Tutti!

Buon Natale e Aguri a Tutti!!

 Che bellissima, questa stagione di Natale!

 Just a few more days and its Christmas! Holy moly we have gone so hard with the 2016 Christmas initiative, people seem to really love the #SiiUnaLuce video. Christmas time definitely does soften the hearts of people.
Amazing lunch we had in Venice with friends I taught English to last year
 Last week was yet another whirlwind as it always seems to be. We traveled to Modena for a mission conference that was held by Elder Johnson of the Seventy. He had me and Anziano Bruggeman get up and share some of the miracles we have seen in Mestre, specifically about meeting this man named Giovanni. The next day we drove to Verona, then Milano for another conference with Elder Johnson.

 Lots of traveling and conferences but so many great things I was able to take away and learn.

2nd conference in Milano
Half of mission conference
English class Christmas party

 Giovanni, whom we had met a few weeks ago, finally met with us last Wednesday night. He brought the Book of Mormon we had given to him, of which he had read 501 pages in just 2 weeks. As we told him our experiences of why we know it is a real, true book, he told us he felt the same way. He hugged us both at the end and thanked us for being testimonies of the Book of Mormon. Experiences like this, in my mission, have only come a few times, so I'm super grateful!

Venice today!
 Last night we had dinner at Fratello Massimiliano Franni's house. He is a professional pianist and the BYU music professor. It was one of the coolest experiences for me to meet with someone, whose music I actually have heard before! We are having Christmas dinner at his house so we are looking forward to that.

 I hope everyone enjoys this Christmas Sunday. Don't forget to take some time to sit back and read about our Savior Jesus Christ. He gave us a gift that exceeds any gift money or time could buy. He gave Himself for us, and hundreds of doors open for us if we love Him, and Follow Him. I've been able to learn and understand the power that comes from knowing that He lives, and Knowing that His church has been restored. This knowledge creates for us, the most secure foundation that could support anyone in any life crisis. I love you all, and I especially love my Savior Jesus Christ. Merry Christmas!


Anziano Hogan

My trainer and me from last year!
Anziano Josh Thomson
MOSTRA!  In Mestre downtown
The ward gave us food for Christmas!
Our ward loves us!!
Making Gnocchi
Making Gnocchi with our ward mission leader

Friday, December 16, 2016

Christmas is Close!

Buone Feste cari miei!
Zone Conference

I can't even tell you all how happy I am for this time of year. Last year's Christmas was awesome but this year is even more meaningful for me. Being in the mission for as long as I have has everything to do with it. I've been able to grow and learn so much about our Savior Jesus Christ in my time here in Italy. 

As usual, this week was a whirlwind of craziness. We had the Christmas Zone Conference last Thursday which went so well! Right after, we drove to Vicenza to do an exchange. We got to Christmas carol to the Anziani(Elderly) here in Mestre which was a blast! They all thought it was funny that the Anziani (us) were singing to the actual Anziani. It was so nice to share the spirit of Christmas with some of Venice's oldest seniors. 
We were so busy this week, we didn't even think about pictures...sorry!
I cant't get over how great the #SiiUnaLuce ( #SharetheLight ) Video is!! We walk the streets for hours each week trying to share this message with the people here. We have received so much positive feedback from it. I really like how it relates to all races, religions, and people, because this message isn't just for a select people, its for the WORLD. As far as I know, Italian is one of the only languages that translates (Share the Light) to (BE the Light). I thought that was so cool and I honestly like that more. Our actions towards others are usually what sparks the desire in a persons heart to be a Light as well. In 3 Nephi 12:16 it reads "Let your light so shine before this people, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven". Show someone you love them by giving your time, efforts, and heart, or in other words, Be like the Savior. Have a great week, and don't forget why we celebrate!
Love all of you!!! 
-Anziano Willy Hogan 

Address for Christmas cards! 

Anziano Hogan
Via Cappuccina 19/F, 
30172 Mestre, 

Sunday, December 11, 2016


Hey Everyone!
Mestre Centro.  It may be smaller than all my other cities but it still is awesome!  I will get some Venice Christmas pictures to y'all soon!

 It has been such a CRAZY week here. With our new assignment here in Venezia-Mestre, Anziano Bruggeman and I are busier than at any point in our missions. For example, we spent 12 hours on trains these last 2 days and next week we travel to the far parts of the mission for a conference and a meeting. Tomorrow is our big Christmas Zone Conference and I'm super pumped for it! Busy as ever but I love it!
Pranzo (lunch) with Marco and his family minus one son.
# awkward missionary poses.  This is our friend Erica, who is moving back to England
Roland...the nicest member ever!
 I'm so happy it is finally December because people are now in that mindset of Christmas. Basically every free evening we have, we go downtown with a big speaker and show the #SiiUnaLuce(Be a light) Video, which always gets at lest a few people to stop. Something really amazing came out of showing the video. One night, a woman stopped and watched the video. Afterwards she asked us to come and share more of our message with her family. Well, we called her and she wasn't kidding so we visited her home last Saturday and taught her and 4 other kids. I honesty cant remember the last time something as awesome as this happened in my mission. They were pretty firm in their beliefs but they still listened to us so intently and asked tons of questions. We will see what happens.
Amazing burgers
 Last week we met with Marco, the Venetian chef, who is so eager to learn more and be baptized either by the end of this month or the beginning of the next. He is so awesome! He made us his special Carbonara which we agreed was the best Carbonara we have ever tasted. He has the most amazing family of a wife, 2 little boys and a crazy little dog.

A tree in Centro (Centro is downtown)
I hope you are all enjoying the holidays. Don't forget the reason why we celebrate, and WHO we are celebrating. Share with as many people as you can the #ShareTheLight video! We can make this world a better place, one act at a time. Love you all.

-Anziano Hogan

A church in Bergamo




Friday, December 2, 2016

Another week in Paradise...

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! It would be nice if Thanksgiving was every month, or even week because its nice having a day where we express our gratitude. I have definitely seen that I am happier when I list the things I am grateful for.

Last Thursday we ate at the home of Anziano and Sorella Clark. They are the senior couple of our Zone, and they made one of the best thanksgiving meals I think I have ever had!!

Anziano Bruggeman and I are really enjoying Mestre. This city is awesome! Its different from Bologna but the work is growing. We have a few great people we are teaching who have a great desire to be baptized.

San Marco in Venice

 It is getting pretty cold up here, but it doesn't stop us from standing outside at night trying to share with everyone #SiiunaLUCE (BE a Light) which is the new Christmas video. I could say its my favorite video that the church has made for the Holidays. Last Saturday night, a man named Giovanni loved our message so much he told us to come over to his house in Venice and talk more about the Book of Mormon. And every once in a while someone will stop and watch the video, and they always seem to love it.

Our Bigliettini (pass along cards) for Christmas!

This weekend we had an exchange with the President's assistants who came here to Venice. Both of them were the last ones who served in this city so they showed us around and really helped out. They were also able to help us out with the "Meet the Mormons" showing we had on Friday night. 25 non members came and it was a HUGE success!!

 My letters this time of year will sound a lot like last years because I LOVE Christmas time as a missionary. Its one of two times of the year the majority of people are somewhat focused on Jesus Christ. I am sad this is my last Christmas as a missionary, but that just makes me want to go all out and have that #Yolo attitude and talk to everyone.
I hope all of you at home remember that Christ shouldn't be celebrated just on the 25th of December but always, especially during these next few weeks. I love you all and miss you. Keep being great and don't forget who you are!

Anziano Hogan

Friday, November 25, 2016


Buona Settimana di ringraziamento!!

Probably one of the most insanely crazy busy weeks of my mission!

Anziano Bruggeman and I both arrived in Mestre on 

Thursday and had to just read what the other missionaries left us and go from there. We have a sweet bright red Toyota Yaris which is great. We also have the stake center here so it is the biggest ward I've been in yet. 

Day in Venice

On Friday we were making lots of calls and a part member family invited us over and they treated us like their own! The dad, who isn't a member, is a chef in Venice and he made us food that made me cry a little bit. They came to church on Sunday!! 

On Saturday I was given the opportunity to travel down back to Bologna to baptize Salvatore, the man I found in the park back in August. Such a huge blessing.

We are so busy here in Mestre, Anziano Bruggeman and I have a lot more responsibility up here but we are having a blast. I'm so excited to work here and get close to the Venetians.

I am looking forward to Thanksgiving! I have so many things to be

grateful for, it wouldn't be possible to write them all down. One of
them would be my mission, I wouldn't be the person I am now without
these last 15 months. I am also thankful for my savior Jesus Christ.
His sacrifice has made so many things possible for us. I am thankful
for all of you! I love you all and hope you have a great week.

Anziano Hogan

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Miracle of my mission and moving to Venice - Mestre

It feels good to be writing you guys again even though It feels like I wrote you all yesterday!

Visiting the Ducati Factory!


Believe it or not, this is in downtown Bologna
Life has been great. The 3 elders I have been living with are like best friends to me. We laugh our heads off every time we are together. Yesterday Anziano Jensen picked up a pigeon, just an example of his wildness. Its great and I am sad to leave!

I have been in this city for 6 months and it has become such a huge part of who I am. I will never forget the people, the experiences, nor the food! Transfers are happening this week. Anziano Minnoch, whom I just trained, is going to train a new missionary next transfer, which
is the first time that's happened in this mission in a long time. I have been called to go to Mestre, which is where Venice is!! Who would have thought.. I hope to make any difference I can to this new city.

Benjamino: an awesome member!

Last dinner with Erica and Giuseppe

Another mostra!

 These last several days have been some of the best days of the misison. My great friend Max was baptized this last Saturday. I will be surprised If I will ever meet someone with a more amazing
conversion story than his. As I mentioned in other letters, Max served as a Catholic Priest for more than 10 years, and has been given a few very tough trails in life. About 3 years ago he started reading the Book of Mormon after he met the missionaries on the street. He read the whole thing and gained a testimony of it that he said he would never forget. For two years he stopped meeting with the missionaries because he felt his trail was too much for him. 3 months ago we met him on the street and last weekend he was baptized. I've never prayed harder, worked harder, or felt so inspired for just one person in my entire life. On Friday night, the night before his baptism, we gave him a blessing for a really bad headache he had been dealing with for a few weeks. Immediately after the blessing he said that for the first time in 3 weeks his head had no pain. I know that the priesthood works. That was the first time I was really able to see it work so quickly and swiftly. The next day, President Allen and Sister Allen came to the baptism and everything went perfectly. I am so grateful to have played a part in this whole thing.

Il Battesimo di Max
Last shindig with Max

 Its moments like these that make everything seem more than worth the effort. I love all of you and I cant wait to share with you all my experiences in Venice and Mestre! Have a great week!!

The "funeral" for Sorella Visconti who is going back home to France

-Anziano Hogan

New Address- Via Cappuccina 19/F, 30172 Mestre, Italia

The chairs represent how many transfers you have done.  This is the last pic with the Bologna District!


Wednesday, November 9, 2016


This week was great! After a few days we got over whatever we were sick with.
People here do not stop asking us about the elections haha, its pretty funny. It rained a lot and the weather is so cold! But that didn't stop us from having the baptism for my good friend William. He really is such a good and kind person. We played a celebratory game of ping pong with him the other night and he beat all of us. Everything went super well with the baptism and the members sure loved it. He told me how he feels so clean and like a new person ever since. 
Unfortunately my time in Bologna may be winding down. I have been here since May! Transfer calls come this weekend so I will find out where I am going and with who. Next Wednesday I will let you all know! I will never forget this city, the people, and the good and bad, mostly good.

Today we went to Venice! Which may be the last time if I get transferred. We walked all around the island just exploring cool streets and finding new things.

This weekend we should be having two more baptisms for Max and Salvatore. I pray that everything will work out so that I can see these two men be baptized before I leave this city. The story behind Max is absolutely amazing. Unfortunately I am not able to explain everything here in the email but his baptism would be one of the biggest miracles and blessings of my entire mission. Not to mention the baptism of Salvatore as well. I was doing finding in a park one day in early August when I met a man who was smoking and telling us God doesn't exist. That man was Salvatore, who is about to be baptized and become a member of the Church.
The power that comes from a testimony of Jesus Christ and the Book of Mormon can help someone get rid of any addiction, or bad habit. It truly is real and powerful. I have seen it first hand. Vi voglio bene, buona settimana!
Dio ci ama!