Tuesday, May 20, 2014


May 20, 2014

Family and Friends,

We have had quite the week here in Durrës.
Elder Acheson by the beautiful Adriatic Sea

I am sending my weekly update a day late because yesterday the city of Durrës was without electrical power. We did have an earthquake two nights ago around 3 AM. I woke up in the night and felt the bed shaking and I could hear objects moving in the next room. I realized that it was an earthquake, said a quick prayer, and returned to sleep. I didn't have control over the situation so I decided not to worry about it.
 TIRANA, Albania (AP) — Seismologists say an earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 5.2 has rattled central Albania, causing minor damage to buildings but no injury.
Albania's Seismological Department says the quake, which occurred at 2:59 a.m. (0059 GMT) Monday, had its epicenter 6 kilometers (about 4 miles) southeast of Belsh commune, 44 kilometers (27 miles) south of the capital, Tirana.
I am surprised that there was no damage anywhere in the city. Most buildings in Albania are not built on sturdy foundations and are constructed out of stacked bricks held in place by an outer layer of spray concrete. To give my honest assessment, if there was a considerable earthquake, most building in Albania would fall.

On the topic of events taking place in the night, my companion reports (along with all of my former companions) that I speak in my sleep. The most recent happening was this past evening where Elder Ašler reported that he woke in the night to hear the Restoration lesson delivered in Albanian. Elder Ašler continued to listen until I asked him (while asleep) to bear his testimony as the concluding part of the lesson. He waited for the next conversation point until he gratefully heard the indications that I had resumed sleeping quietly.

Ersi Myrtollari, Elder Acheson and Suzana Biçaku
In other happenings Suzana Biçaku, my Elbasan Success Story, came to Durrës for family reasons this past week. We were able to spend some lunch time with her and Ersi Myrtollari, my Durrës Success Story, and go grab an ice cream together down along the shore. That was a very happy moment for me, having the fruits of my labor with me together. I was a very happy person that day.
Mr. Myrtollari and Elder Bilodeau

I also had a very great exchange with my former companion Elder Bilodeau in a zone leader function on Wednesday. He came and we shared a wonderful day together eating seafood, visiting the Myrtollari Family, and getting our baptismal candidate interviewed. The exchange went very well and I very much admire the growth that Elder Bilodeau has gone through with his new mantle.

Additionally on Tuesday we had the "Training of Trainers of Trainee who become Trainees along with their Trainees." It was a good opportunity to receive training on how we might be able to improve the way in which we proceed about out work as trainer and trainee. I am very impressed with the group of trainees that we have in the mission. There is a general excellent report for the quality of trainees.
Elder Acheson teaching the spiritual thought at a youth soccer game

Well I love you all and I am excited to report on the developments of this upcoming week. Except to hear about a baptism soon.

With great love,

Elder Açësoni

Elder Acheson and Elder Watson on an exchange

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