Sunday, August 5, 2012
July 22, 2012
I am so happy to hear that you all are doing so well and having a great summer! Sounds like a ton of fun! :) Now with monsoon season over, I feel like I am back in the California heat! It feels so nice but makes me think of home and those fun summers!
This week was a little rough. At the beginning of the week, we had three baptisms that we were planning for, 서 자매님 (Sister Soe), 박 자매님 (Sister Park), and 조 자매님 (Sister Cho). They were all on board and excited for their baptisms on this upcoming Sunday, but now are having family issues. Sister Soe's husband is Buddhist and being in Korea, woman must take their husband's religion or get the husband's permission to join and attend a different church. He allows her to come to the church for all the activities and to take lessons from us, but will not allow her to be baptized into our church. We met with Sister Park last Monday at the Gilbert's home to have rootbeer floats (an total treat!) and have Sister Gilbert teach us from the scriptures. Sister Park had a wonderful time and learned so much from Sister Gilbert. When we arrived home, she texted us and said that she felt something very special that night in the Gilbert's home and that she knows what we are teaching is true. More than knowing what we are teaching is true, she knows the Book of Mormon is true and loves learning from it. She is so excited to be baptized, but her mother is a die-hard Catholic who goes to church EVERYDAY to pray. She still has to get her permission and is scared to ask. We are praying for her. Sister Cho is a thirteen year old girl that we have been teaching in English class. She absolutely loves spending time with us. She came to Primary last week and loves the gospel. We got her parent's permission and started teaching her the lessons. In just four days, we had taught her all about the gospel and had asked her to be baptized! She was thrilled and we were shocked when she asked if that meant she could be a REAL member now. She absolutely cannot wait to be baptized, but when she asked her parents, they will not give her permission. It is so hard to see all these wonderful people change because of the gospel and excited to become members, but not being able to because of family circumstances. It just breaks my heart. I know that if they never get permission from their families, however, that they will accept the gospel and grow from it for the rest of their lives. I feel priviledged to have been an instument in Heavenly Father's hands to bring them a knowledge of the true gospel of Jesus Christ and help answer the questions of their souls. It is amazing to see how the truth can bring such peace and joy in people's lives and how their lives have been changed for the better by accepting the truth in their lives.
This week, we met with 정 자매님 (Sister Jeong), the lady from China. She is absolutely wonderful! We had so much fun meeting with her this week because she taught us how to make homemade 만두 (potstickers...I think that is what they are called?). They were so fun to make! I have been trying to learn how to make a bunch of Korean food from members and our investigators. They love teaching us and they get a kick out of it that we have no idea what we are doing! She is so sweet and still has absolutely no concept about God, Jesus Christ, or religion, but she is eager to learn. It is difficult trying to teach her because of the language barrier. She is fluent in Korean, but the religious vocabulary is difficult for her to understand and to remember. She is so patient and loves meeting with us. We have been trying to slowly teach her and try to give her a foundation of God and who she is and why she is here. It is a very humbling experience and I hope that we are blessing her life.
On Thursday, we had our district meeting and President and Sister Gilbert came to teach us and to do interviews. I always look forward to this every other transfer! They were so impressed to hear about our English class and the success that we have been having. That night at English class, President and Sister Gilbert showed up to check it out. They were blown away and kept taking pictures. They asked the four of us (Elder Innnis, Elder Boyack, Sister Brady, and I) to train the other missionaries in the mission on how to do English class next transfer. So that means we will be traveling all over the mission for zone conferences to teach. That should be a blast! This Thursday, President and Sister Gilbert will come to video tape the class, and after English class, we are doing our second musical fireside. This fireside will be on the second lesson: The Plan of Salvation. We are having many members of our English class and our investigators do musical numbers for it and provide food. It should turn out great and I am so excited to see how everyone reacts.
Yesterday after church, we did a run-through/preview of the fireside for Thursday with our members, with help from the other missionaries from our district. It turned out beautiful and the Spirit was so strong. It had a different feeling and affect than the Restoration fireside. There was a sweetness and very strong feeling of love during the whole performance. Heavenly Father's plan for us is so individual and so sacred, and that feeling really shown through in the music and the testimonies shared. Once again, after the program, everyone just stayed and lingered. There is such a strong spirit that these firesides bring and makes everyone "feel like family" (that is what they say). After we had dinner and cleaned up, Sister Brady was playing hymns on the piano. One-by-one the members started singing the hymns and before I knew it, we were all standing around in a circle with hymn books singing hymns together. It was a sweet moment in my mission that I will cherish forever. The spirit was so strong and there was such love. I felt like I was in the temple and could feel angels all around us! What a sweet experience. These firesides are so amazing and I feel so blessed to be putting them together and having the support from all the other missionaries. We are even getting calls from others in the mission trying to put together these firesides in their areas. What a blessing!
Transfer calls are on Thursday. I can't believe this transfer is already over...I feel like I just arrived yesterday. I hope to stay in 연산 for at least one more transfer, but I will let you know next week where I am and who I am with! I am excited to find out!
Well the work is great. I feel so blessed and I am so grateful for everyday! I know this gospel is true and I am grateful for the happiness that it brings each day into my own, personal life! I hope you all have a fantastic week!
I love you all!
at 5:27 PM