Tuesday, December 30, 2014
Dear best fam on earth!!!
1. Happy 19th birthday, Rylan!!!! Hehe. Seems a bit odd, right? So in Korea when you are born you're 1 year old, and then each new year everyone goes up an age. It's kind of confusing because it also has to do with what time of the year you're born... sometimes people are two years older, sometimes one year. I explained that terribly but it's because I don't quite understand! Anyway, if Rylan lived in Korea, he would be turning 19! Weird.
So... Also happy birthday to everyone else? You're all getting a year older :) I know you are so happy to hear that!
Soo.... I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas!!!! Mine here in Korea was incredible!!! Such a memorable Christmas :) I'll start at the beginning though.
Last Monday was... quite a day. I already got to tell you, family, on the phone call but I'll just remind you. So we had a dinner with our ward mission leader (손승주 son-seong-ju). So good! But seriously, the amount of food!!! It was just us four sisters eating at 5 and then the elders from our district were eating at 7. Reminder- there are 8 elders in my district. They gave the sisters and elders the same amount of food. the same -_- So we had to eat so much! And when you thought it was all the food, they would just bring out more...... And here if someone offers you food (especially an older person and especially especially an older man), you eat! For some reason 손승주 son-seong-ju kept giving me food! He would say "Sis. Evans needs more. Give her meat." And someone would start putting it on my plate. He would say "More. .. More... More" Oh my gosh! I had to eat so much of everything! I think it would impress Dad and terrify Mom how much I can eat. They made funeral potatoes!!! Crazy!!! Cheese pretty much doesn't exist here- I've never seen it. So it's really expensive to buy. But they got it for us! So kind. After the meal we were sitting on the floor and there was the "after meal food".... because that exists here. They gave us so many oranges to eat and then a massive sweet potato. Oh ya, I forgot to tell you, I eat about 5 sweet potatoes a day. They're the best snack! I just boil them or cook them in the morning. So good :) So they had this pot of the biggest potatoes you've ever seen. They were like watermelons (ok so that might be a little bit of an exaggeration..) But ya, we each had to eat a few. Hahaha I told you how my companion hid in the bathroom forever. She would open the door, stare at all the new food, and just go back in. Haha I would glare at her each time, "Get back here!!!!"
So then after, we took a bus straight to another woman's house (김미라 kim-me-ra). She had invited us over and we told her that we would be coming straight from a meal so not to feed us. Why did we expect anything different? We got there and she made..... this soup for about 100 people. She could have fed our whole ward!!!!!!! Every year on Dec 22nd Korean's eat red bean soup. Don't know why. So literally she was getting red beans and blending them and putting them in the cauldron I told you about the pot (that was the biggest pot you've ever seen times the next biggest pot you've ever seen in size). She made 떡 (dok)... it's like.... dough? Don't know how to describe it. But that was the only thing in it. It was the first meal I've ever been to where we didn't finish the food. We couldn't even finish one bowl. That's because she didn't give us bowls, though, she gave us each pots. (again, not really, but the bowls were huge!!!!) We all were so incredibly sick. Just praying we wouldn't puke over everything. Hahaha! When we got there and saw she was making food, my companion literally started crying a little bit. Meals are.... a bit stressful. So kind of them!! But it's just such a different culture so you have to eat everything. We could hardly walk! Eventful day :)
Tuesday! We set up at the church all day! We (the missionaries) had to decorate for the Christmas party. Fun! Kind of wish we could've been out talking to people or teaching you know because that's our purpose... but it's ok! Decorating took all day and then there was FHE! So fun as always. 강지은 cong-jee-en came!!! She's been out for a while. We played a fun signs game.
Then Christmas Eve!!! We had district meeting and then finished getting ready for the Christmas party. 유옥렬 you-ong-reor came!!!! She's the investigator we meet with sometimes. She stayed the whole time and loved it!!! She's a quiet woman. After she texted us and said thank you because we made her Christmas ^^ Not us! Not Sis. Ahn and I but our ward. That made me so happy!!! She's lonely (she's 53, her husband died a little bit ago, but lives with her 22 year old daughter). Also, 박성회 bak-song-hwe came!!! That's 최승임's husband (remember him? He's Buddhist and really nice). Their son was playing the guitar at the party so he came to watch. There was a raffle going on and he actually won something but was embarrassed to go up and get it so he made me! The Christmas party was SO fun!!!! Such a blast. The young men did the first part- a wii bowling game where there were teams. Haha it was so funny! The young kids sang and danced :) The women did a hula dance!! All dressed up and danced. So fun/funny!! Then the young women (4 of them) did a dance. So hilarious. They started just dancing around and then whipped their hair out and all around. Everyone kept laughing so hard. I have videos of all! Don't worry. Then the missionaries did our little performance thing. Oh man... So Sis. Gil and I were the faces and our companions were behind us as our arms. We went through a normal missionary day- including eating food, getting ready, exercising, talking to drunk people, opening presents, the whole shabang. For face powder, they threw flour on our faces. Oh man! We were looking so good. It was hilarious!! Our ward is the best! The party was so, so fun!!!
THEN CHRISTMAS. Such a... normal day! Haha. We got ready and then the four sisters went to a couple member houses to sing carols. We only got to go to 2 though.... they made us come in and talk so long. But it's ok!! They were the best!!!! The first family we were to are seriously amazing! They are quite good at English, too. (The wife went to school in Hawaii and teaches English here) So fun!!!! Then we visited 이충송 ee-cheong-son. Oh ya! The night before at the Christmas party, her husband bought EVERY COMPANIONSHIP a cake!! Oh my gosh!!! Cakes are so expensive here and he bought 6!!! So generous! So you can guess what we had for our Christmas dinner... ;) Cake! And pringles... Goin the healthy route, as you can tell. The 4 sisters did a little secret Santa so we opened those during dinner. So fun! After we went with our district to sing at a couple members houses :) So fun!!
And just like that Christmas was over! SUCH A GOOD CHRISTMAS THOUGH!!!! The day after was quite good, too^^ I GOT TO TALK TO MY FAMILY!!!! You all sounded like angels!!! That had smoked or something because your voices were all crackly from the connection. Hahaha. Probably not the best portrayal... It was so fun though!! Holy cow can 40 min go fast or what? Sorry i talked the whole time!!!! I think, "Oh I'll just tell them this one story...." ope times up. So sorry about that!!!! And DAD!!! Your Korean is seriously so good!!! I was so impressed!!!! How do you remember it so well??? The Koreans couldn't believe it. Alright so I always take so much time writing these emails- they're always so long! Anyways, after, we did weekly planning. Haha we did it by candlelight (using the 3 small candles you sent me) because my companion said it would be romantic. Haha! So weird. What pretty much ended up happening was our tiny office was overwhelmed by different smells and our eyes killed after an hour and a half of trying to see but not being able to. When we opened our door to get water it was a burst of sunshine and fresh air!! Haha we had been so deprived. We visited *** that night. It was so sad :/ She LOVES our message and wants to hear all about it and learn, but she's been meeting us in secret because she's afraid of her husband. It was our 4th time coming over and she said, "I have to tell me husband!" So she called him right then and pretended that we just showed up for the first time and wanted to talk. He immediately began screaming at her.... He talked to my companion on the phone and just yelled at her, saying he was going to call the police and all this stuff. So sad :( So she had to give the Book of Mormon back and we can't meet anymore. She was so sad.
Saturday.... We were supposed to meet an investigator but she never showed up :/ so we went to 3 different people's houses to teach and we couldn't teach anyone! Bummer. So just street contacted till English class. So, as I said, there was supposed to be a baptism today!!! The first one in months! But.... The girl getting baptized just stopped responding and blocked everyone's numbers Thursday so she never showed up :/ No one thought that would happen!! She was perfect and had so much faith!! So that was a bummer. Sis. Ahn and I went to a lady's house to teach but she had guests over so we couldn't :/ So just went door-to-door! Actually apartment-to-apartment..... So fun!!! I love doing that.
Sunday! Whew almost there. Church... 방연숙 bong-yoen-suke came!!! Not much time so I have to cut this short! But last night there was a baptism! Eld Helsloot and Christensen taught him. So fun! Oh! So sad!!! The water heater hasn't been working so.... he was baptized in cold water! Like really cold! Poor guy. But still awesome!!
Well, I hope you had such a good Christmas!!! I know I did, talking to you all was the best!!! Have a happy new year and more especially, HAPPY BIRTHDAY RYLAN!!! Good luck in Wisconsin!! You're going to kill it!
Sis. Gentry Evans
Monday, December 22, 2014
1. Ya I'm probably just repeating myself now..... but! In Korea they don't use red pens very much! Writing someone's name in red means that they're dead, or you want them dead, or some bad omen. So yep! Don't use red.
Ah Merry Christmas!!! Can you believe it's Christmas already?! Crazy!! I've also decided that calling home is a waste of time and I should be studying for those 40 min instead so I won't be calling home this year! Hope you're ok with that. Hahahaha just kidding! Can't wait to call!!! :)
So last Monday we visited the less active that lives super far away by the pretty mountain. 정분연 (Jong-bune-yeon) She is so kind!!! She made us tea and we talked about her family. She still has pictures of the temple up in her house and tons of LDS books... So we're really having a hard time figuring out why she isn't coming to church. (She used to be relief society president too) We shared a message and will visit again soon! Also, IT SNOWED LIKE CRAZY ALL DAY. It's soooo pretty!!!! I love it. Which reminds me! I have another quote.
"The scriptures are laid before thee, yea, and all things denote there is a God, yea, even the earth and all things that are upon the face of it, yea, and it's motion, yea, and also all the planets which move in their regular form do witness that there is a Supreme Creator." That's from Alma 30:44
I read that this week and just loved it!! Because I think it's so true... You know the earth is so beautiful (especially this past week with all the snow!!!!) So there has to be someone that created it!
Anyway, Monday night the snow turned to sleet, so then Tuesday morning we woke up and all of the grounds are completely frozen. Just ice everywhere! Haha so since then everyone has been walking like penguins. So funny. There's salt thrown everywhere on the ground but they haven't melted yet. Maybe too cold. And then it just keeps snowing on top...
Tuesday! Service project (yes, Mom, same one every week! Not boring, it's fun :) ) Then we visited people but I don't remember who... That night before FHE we taught ..... It was honestly the saddest lesson I've ever been in. I told you about her dad, how he abuses her sisters and mom. We were teaching about God and how he is out loving father, but she couldn't understand because that's not how her dad is. He's 80 now and still is the same. She said that when he drinks alcohol he just breaks everything. She is so so so scared of him. It was so sad. She was just crying... She gets up before he does and just walks and walks outside all day to avoid seeing him. She was crying saying it's so cold... Ah. So hard. We're trying so hard to help her! She's not getting baptized next week but maybe next month. She wants sooo badly to feel God's love. So we're waiting till she understands more and feels like she is ready.
Then FHE. It was fun!
Wednesday we sang carols and street boarded! So fun!!! :) So, so cold! Haha my district was all standing there totally frozen! Sliding a little because the ground was all ice haha. We visited 여복달 (yo-bok-dar) harmony. Cute as ever. That night visited 최승임 (chway-seng-eem). Her dad had a cerebral hemorrhage last week so it's been in the hospital, really bad shape :( But she was so calm! We talked a lot about that. Ate dinner with her, her son, and her husband! He is so nice. Got home the latest I ever have on my mission... 9:35!!! Whew. What a late-nighter!
That day... I got your package!!!!! THANK YOU SO SO MUCH!!!!!!! It's so cute and everything is all wrapped!!!! So darling!! I have the Christmas tree up!! :) I would say I can't wait to open them on Christmas... but I may have already peeked... at all of them... haha. Because what if something needed to be refrigerated?! (I know, really stretching that excuse haha) So I peeked and then wrapped them back up!!! Except for the necklace and earrings... I've been wearing them everyday since!!! I love them!!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH FAMILY!!!! You are the best!!! It was really WAY to much. Also, I can't tell if you were being incredibly kind by sending me all the chocolate because I haven't had much of it in Korea, or just incredibly cruel and are wanting me to gain an excessive amount of weight ;) hahaha just kidding.
Thursday we had weekly planning because Friday was our Christmas conference! After we walked forever away to an area I've never been in before! Saw an overpass that looks just like the one by the Orange Patch- so weird!!! Got to the villa of the girl we were looking for-- she wasn't home :( Such a blessing though!!! It was really far and obviously a bit chilly outside, but today there was no wind!!! So the weather wasn't even bad :) We were so happy!! We visited ... She's the one that has to drink to fall asleep and her son died... She is so.. angry. She just is bitter. Very sad visit. Doesn't want us to come back :/
Friday was Christmas Conference!!!! It was at our church building with our zone and another zone from out in the country. My last zone leader (Elder Bae) was there. I asked how the country is and he said they shovel snow, everyday. Fun!... It's so cold out there right now! President Christensen and his wife were there along with the AP's. It was so good!!!!! Learned so much!!! Watched a Pentatonix video- that was kind of surprising! They're so amazing though. It's so funny. President is so bold! He's great. And Sis. Christensen is so sweet!!! Had a really cool hands-on lesson with lights. I would tell you more about it but there's not enough time! Sis. Christensen made cookies and brownies for us... oh my gosh!!!! So much sugar!!!! Everyone felt like they were going to throw up haha have not had that much sugar in forever!! And we watched Mr. Krueger's Christmas! Or however you spell his name... So fun!!! Ok no time! Visited the lady with the two sons again and they played computer games the whole time we were there... so sad! Also taught another harmony.
Saturday was amazing!!! 배혜영 (bay-hway-yeong) didn't show up for our lesson :( So instead we went to a house we've never been able to get into to visit two less actives (20 and 17) and they were home!!! The cool part was that we met their 10 year old sister!!! 김유빈 (kim-you-bean) She is so, so cute!!! She came to English class that day and we walked her home. She says she wants us to be her sisters. I think she doesn't get much attention at home (Only a mom- Dad's out of the picture and the mom is never home because she is working) We taught 윤정숙 and ah she fed us the craziest food!!! "순대" (sun-day) Basically just pig insides. With liver on the side, naturally, for that extra bit of deliciousness we were missing out on.
Sunday was great!!! Church and 유옥렬 (you-ong-reaor) came!! We taught her after with 최남희(chway-nam-he). It was great!! Then practiced for the Christmas party and that night the sisters ate at the bishops house!! It was seriously so fun. He is hilarious!!
Love you so much!! I hope you have a very merrry Christmas!!! Can't wait to hear your voices!!!
Love love love,
Sunday, December 14, 2014
1. Whenever you go to someone's house and sit on the floor, you always have so sit in a "proper" way first (just kneeling on your heels), and then the host will say you can sit "comfortably." If not it's kind of rude!
So I read a quote a little bit ago that I just love! So much. It makes me very happy! So I wanted to share :) It's a bit long, but great!
"This Christmas, mend a quarrel. Seek out a forgotten friend. Dismiss suspicion and replace it with trust. Write a letter to someone living in Korea. (haha ok you got me I added the part about someone living in Korea) Give a soft answer. Encourage youth. Manifest your loyalty in word and deed. Keep a promise. Forgo a grudge. Forgive an enemy. Apologize. Try to understand. Examine your demands on others. Think of someone else first. Be kind. Be gentle. Laugh a little more. Express your gratitude. Welcome a stranger. Gladden the heart of a child. Take pleasure in the beauty and wonder of the earth. Speak your heart and then speak it again."
Isn't that just beautiful?! There's so much good in the world! And so much good we can do :) It's in the December Liahona... page 39? I've been looking at it a lot... I bolded the last few because they're just so great!
Now Monday! So last Monday wasn't our actual pday. We met ... and taught her. At the end, she said she wants to be baptized!!! What?! So exciting!
Tuesday we got to go to the temple!!! So great! And so beautiful because there was snow on the ground! It's been snowing on and off every day. After, Sis. Ahn, Seegmilller, 길 (Gil) and I stayed in that area and went to all the different stores! Very fun :) They sure love shopping! After we had family night! Very fun.
Wednesday we had district meeting! SO GREAT! Elder Pons (district leader) is such... a deep thinker? Haha don't know how to describe it. He's very smart! He wrote a super old and confusing poem that we picked apart. Felt kind of like I was back in Katie Sheridan's class last year. We street contacted... and taught 최승임 (chway-seng-eem) and her son (박재현 bak-jay-heon). He is 11 and so smart! She was baptized in May and we're just following up and explaining things to her :) She is amazing!!! Very... smart. How to describe her.. She's very.. upper class? Ya. Very nice. She drove us home! 1st time I've been driven home after a lesson! Most Koreans don't have a car.
Thursday.... SO MUCH SNOW!! It was amazing!!! Oh my goodness I love it snow much!! It has been snowing but Thursday was a ton. I think snow is just such a happy thing. The flakes are so pretty and just dance in the air so delicately. Haha that is until there is a fierce wind... The flakes were huge, too!! We had the service project and then walked and taught a harmony- 여복달 (yo-bok-dar). We visited her last week too- we met her on the street and helped her carry groceries to her apartment a few weeks ago? Ya she was great! Very... tired. Also only has a couple teeth. She's so cute though! We met someone on the street that actually gave us her address!! So we visited her that night. She's a harmony (haha we teach so many harmonies!) and has attended a lot of different churches. She says she doesn't believe in attending church though, she just believes in God. She's super nice and intersting to talk with. We're visiting again this week! Her name is 조일호 (jo-eel-ho)
Friday... Friday... weekly planning! Then we taught the old harmony- 김명옥 (kim-meong-oak). She doesn't want us to visit again :/ she says it's too hard for her. She's still kicking and funny as ever! She's very passionate about Japanese... A lot of the older people are because they remember the occupation. Super... terrible. Incredibly terrible what happened during it. But! Anyways then we taught another lady, ... Super interesting! Second time meeting with her so we taught about the plan of salvation. She attends another church and her husband hates our church so she has to have us come over in secret... She's great though! She understands the scriptures so well and is very blunt, so whenever she's confused or has questions she just asks! It's so nice!
Saturday we met someone that we had met on the street on Wednesday! Isn't this crazy?! We had so many lessons!!!! IT was the best!! Her name is 배혜연 (bay-hay-yeon). She is 26 (a young one!!) and looking for a job. We met her in a "paris baguette" a bread kind of shop. They're everywhere! We're meeting her next Saturday :)
The English class! So fun as always. Oh ya! Ok before class we had a district practice for the ward Christmas party next week. (next week already?!?!) We're singing a pretty Korean Christmas song and then doing an act. You know where a person sits on another's lap with a sheet over their body and the person behind them has their arms out so it looks like the other person's arms? Oh, so difficult to describe. We're drawing little bodies on the sheets so it's a person's normal head, and then these tiny arms that are actually the arms of the people behind them. It is sooo funny. I'll tell you how it goes! We're acting out a missionary's day.
After we had dinner at 김영미 (kim-young-mee)'s house! She is amazing!! She made us so much food, so much. She made dok-bokki? Ok trying to Eomanize is so hard... so sorry that doesn't sound right! Anyways, there was so much of it. Literally a cauldron. A small pot? Oh no. A CAULDRON. Haha it was delicious though! She was baptized as a teenager and her son is a member too but her husband and daughter aren't. No one was home but her. She's wonderful!
Sunday! Church was great. Sis. Ahn and I were asked to help in primary every week. Sis. Ahn is the piano player. (Did I tell you she also plays for sacrament meeting?) So fun! There were only 3 kids. They were memorizing an article of faith so good practice for me! Haha they were getting it so much faster than I was because she would say it in Korean and we would repeat back.. But I was mostly just trying to figure out what words she was using! Super fun though. We had a member of the area seventy come speak in Sacrament! So good! Even if I could only understand a little. He and his wife spoke. As soon as sacrament ended, we ran to the harmony's house 여복달 (yo-bok-dar) and brought her back so she could eat with us! Haha the other harmonies in our ward flocked her and were so welcoming! She was tired and didn't talk much so we just took her back home after she finished eating. Met her son for the first time! He was home. He's... 50? Seemed nice. Street contacted... And then had dinner with a family in our ward! The parents and kids live together, very common. So two very young kids, the parents, and then his Mom (Dad was visiting the other daughter and her family). The grandparents were actually mission presidents in Seoul in 1996! So cool! It was very fun :)
Well fam, love you so much!! Hope you're not freezing to death in Mesa ;)
Sis. Gentry Evans
Sis. Gentry Evans
Thursday, December 11, 2014
1. Ummm... Have I already said that light switches are on the outside of the rooms? If you want to turn the light on in a room, the switch is always outside the room.
Ok what a week!! Last Monday we spent our pday searching for Sis. Seegmiller's wallet because it went missing right after we got lunch :/ We were even in a security office and went through all the different cameras and different angles for the mart where we think we lost it. Super interesting! Couldn't figure out when it disappeared though. But guess what?? Thursday someone really far away found it and saw the mission president's number in it and called and she's getting it back tomorrow!! How crazy?! People are so amazing. That night we taught ... We love her! She's great :) We hope to meet with her again today!
Tuesday we did service and then kept walking that direction to look for less actives. We were about 3 hours away from home after we got there, so we ended taking a taxi back. I know, so luxurious. No, I feel so bad whenever we take a bus or taxi!! It just seems wasteful because we could walk, you know? But we had to get back for FHE! Which was fun, as always :)
Wednesday was zone training! Super fun seeing everyone in our zone. So motivating! I just want to work that much harder. After, 안정민 and I just street contacted for a few hours. This one lady was so so kind!!! I started talking to her and she said, "Oh, it's so cold!! You can't stay out here!" and then went up to a stand and insisted on buying me this bread/roll thing that had red beans in it. (So good!!! That's another thing. Instead of chocolate, they have red beans in everything! Just like that ice cream we ate, Dad.) It was so nice of her!!! Korean people, seriously the kindest. Then 최남희 (cheway-nam-he) had us over for dinner. She is so sweet. The food was so delicious!!
Sidenote, to snack on during e-mail, I just ate dried squid. Yes. I am Korean.
Ok another sidenote, ya it tastes pretty much exactly as you imagine. So not good! Hahaha!
Thursday... We walked all day! We do that everyday, but especially Thursday! Just walked for hours. We were going to visit people but they were all not home. Then we decided to visit this one house where I helped the grandma carry groceries to her apartment a few weeks ago? Anyway, we went there and she was home so we talked with her for awhile! She is so cute. We ran and got milk and bread for her real quick after because it's difficult for her. I want to take a picture of her so you can see her! She really just is so cute!
Then we walked some more, talking to people.... Then that night we went and visited 김명옥 (kim-meong-oak) the grandma. She yelled at us for visiting when it was dark outside. But it was such a good visit! So different with a Korean... There was so much conversation happening! Haha right after we came in the harmony left the room to get something. Sis. Ahn turned to me and said, "You said we were visiting a 91 year-old grandma! This woman is not 91! She just yells and is so loud!" Haha yes, yes she is quite a powerful 91 year-old.
Friday... WHAT A DAY OF MIRACLES. So cool!!!!!!! So we've been struggling to find people to teach. Just... anyone... So! During weekly planning we were calling everyone. And one member said we could come over in an hour! So we booked it out of our apartment. She is such a hardworking woman. I feel so bad for her. Her husband died... awhile ago. Not sure but at least 10 years? He died of cancer. She has 3 kids in their 20's and they all don't attend church. She has a 3-4 room apartment and can't afford heating so her apartment is so cold. She has one big heating pad on the ground I think she sleeps on. Anyways, her 2 sons live at home and don't work or go to school... They just play computer games and hang out with their friends. So sad. She works so hard. One son was there and avoided us forever but finally left the bathroom (the room he was hiding in) to go hang out with friends so no worries, we caught him ;) We talked and shared a message and then got his number so the elders can meet with him.
THEN. We went to a small apartment complex and were just going door-to-door. I've done this quite a bit since I got here, but have never gotten into a house. We had been doing it for a couple hours when we knocked on the door and started yelling back and forth with the lady inside. She opened the door, which was shocking in itself, and then said, "Oh it's so cold! Come inside"..... what?!? YES!!! So we did and just introduced what we're doing to her!! It was so cool!! She was the nicest. She's Buddhist and told us what she believes. She gave us cuties and choco pies! Ah it was the coolest!! She reads a lot of books about religion so she was really excited about the Book of Mormon. So cool!!!! Made my week!!! :)
Saturday was also very fun. We had an appointment that afternoon but she cancelled so we just street contacted and did some door-to-door. Then English class and then went to teach someone that missionaries met with once about a year ago that we found in our book of old investigators. Very cool! Her name is 윤정숙 (youn-jong-suke) Was great! Very humbling because she said she couldn't understand my Korean. Why!!! Just kidding. Got to keep improving!
Sunday was so great! It was so kind. I think every single person that bore their testimonies talked about the missionaries in our ward. Ah! This ward is just amazing!! So kind. They brought us so much food. SO much food. I have to get a picture next month! Also, remember 방연숙? (bong-yeon-suke) Sis. S and I met with her a little. Well she came to church again! We've been calling her. Then she met with us after!! YES! After church we visited 진현숙 (jeen-heon-suke). She was baptized in May but hasn't been attending church very much. She's wonderful! That night our district met and planned what we're doing for the Christmas party. It's going to be so fun!
Well, family! Love you so much!! I'm so glad to see the Christmas tree is already up, I was going to be upset if it wasn't. Oh ya!!! Ok, there are two videos out that are just incredible. One is "Because of Him" and the other is "He is the Gift." They are so powerful!!! Tell me what you think about them :) Especially Because of Him...
Have a great week!
Monday, December 1, 2014
1. There is no word in the Korean language for "you." Very interesting. At first I didn't know what to call people! But now it makes sense and just flows :)
Welcome to Kimchi making season!!
And I hate to admit this, but I am officially not American. I forgot about my favorite holiday!!! I forgot about Thanksgiving! I'll get to that later. Also, it's snowing right now!!!!! Ahh so cool and exciting!!! It's so pretty outside! :)
So last Monday was absolutely crazy! We were walking around and talking to people on the street when we started talking to a cute mom with her daughter. We talked for so long! (Super unusual, people are always so busy so usually they just run away) She doesn't like religion because of how corrupt it often is (VERY common thing for people to say here. I guess there's a lot of problems with the Christian churches being corrupt so a lot of people are very cautious.) Anyways, we talked to her and she was so kind :) THEN. We're walking and I say hello to this lady and she freaks out! She says "You have to meet my friends! You have to meet my friends!" So we walk and talk to her for a really long time. Then we got to where she was going.... The World School for Baristas. (Or something like that) Haha oh my gosh! We go in and there's about 4 or so men all working on computers. It was kind of like a little break room next to the company. They're all coffee engineers- what a coincidence. So funny! Of course they were offering us all of these different kinds of coffee they were making. But very kind when we said no thanks! We told them about why we're in Korea and about our beliefs. So cool! The lady wants to meet again. She was so funny. She had turned to one of the men and said "Hey! You don't have a religion, right? Ok then come over here! These girls can teach you." He mostly just laughed but they sat there and listened and we all talked! So crazy! She gave us food when we left.
Tuesday- last day for Sis. S and I to be companions! We visited people during the day and then had FHE. Sis Pope's last one in the country! So sad for her :( Bishop bought pizza and there were a few people so she could say goodbye. Very fun!
Wednesday- TRANSFERS. Ah I was so nervous to meet my new companion! All the missionaries go to the same area and meet our companion there so there were a ton of people. Saw most of the people from my MTC district! Very fun. Sis. Brown has had a new companion every transfer! So this is her third companion already! So crazy. Anyways, I met my new companion and she is incredible!!! Such a hardworker!! Also, she's a model. (Ok not technically....) But she is so, so pretty!! Sis. 안정민 (ahn-jong-meen). Our first exchange: Me- "Hi!" Her- "Ahh I don't speak English!" Haha yay! It's ok I'm only supposed to be speaking Korean anyway! After we got back, we'd had an appointment but she punked :( So we were going to street contact and walk around for about 4 hours! After about 45 minutes, she turned and said "I'm so sorry, but can we go back?" I found out that she'd been throwing up for the past few days and was so sick! I feel so bad she never said anything! So we went back and she fell asleep immediately for a couple of hours. We had another appointment for that night too but she punked as well :/ It's ok though! Maybe they'll be able to meet another time :)
Thursday, my companion was feeling all better. Thursday... Oh ya!!! WE MADE KIMCHI!!! Oh so so fun!!!! Making kimchi is called "김장" (kim-jong). We went to this church about an hour and a half away and there were a bunch of volunteers. I guess they do it every year and it's a bunch of different religions that come together to do it. So short speeches at the beginning from about 4 people- all different religions! Super cool! Even had a legit monk. (Is that bad to say? I don't know. But he was in the proper dress and everything!) We actually made it really fast, I guess. You have to do it outside because it's so messy (we were covered in it!) and there were a bunch of different tables set up. Haha, the ladies at my table were so funny, they kept feeding me kimchi the whole time we were making it! I would send pictures but I left my camera today :/ Next week! Then a lunch together. That night is when I realized that I've forgotten my true identity... We were talking to people and I went over and started talking to this lady who knew some English. She asked what I'd done today and I said made kimchi! She said I must really love Korea if that's what I did today. I just said, "Ya it's very fun!" Not totally sure what she meant when she said that. Then she asked what my plans were for the night and I said I didn't really have any and she said not even a big dinner! I said no... Then she asked if I was even going to eat chicken. I was so confused! And then she said, "Well if you don't have plans I wish you could come over because my family is having a Thanksgiving dinner at my house but I live so far!" And that is when I realized what day it was. It was 7 at night!!! So crazy. But I ate a lot of very delicious Korean food so it basically is the same, right?? A very fun day though.
Friday... Weekly planning! Oh man took so long because we went through all our records so Sis. Ahn could look at them. Took 4 hours to plan! After, Sis. Ahn and I went to visit 김명옥 but she wasn't home! Super shocking. She's always home! Bummer. Next week! Oh by the way, it was raining all day! So fun :) It was Sis. Seegmiller's birthday, too! So we went out for dinner to a small little restaurant. There was a Christmas tree!!! Love seeing Christmas decorations!! So fun :) Then we surprised Sis. S at the church with a little 5 min party. Sis. Ahn and I had got these Choco pies (cookies) and threw cream on top... Look we made a cake! Haha oh the life of a poor missionary. After the two of us visited an old investigator. Oh man, I feel so badly for her. She is just.... so depressed. She lives along in a two-room apartment (not even a bathroom, it's a community one outside for the whole apartment. Actually, super common though) but has a dog and a cat. Her son died about 13 years ago at age 27, I think? She NEVER talks to anyone or goes outside. She hates church and doesn't believe in a God. Quite interesting she wanted us over. But we were so happy to be there!! We just want to help her in anyway. Last time missionaries visited I guess she said never come back but she really wants us to, so that's good!! She has a... very negative outlook on life. But understandably. She also drinks a ton. She says she can't sleep at night so she drinks a lot and then she can. So sad :( I'll keep you posted on her!
Saturday we searched around for less actives! Met some very interesting people :) Then English class! Always fun. Then we'd made an advent calendar for our ward- just a calendar with a nice scripture for each day until Christmas. Also, it rained all day!
Sunday- church! Our district taught for the first hour and it went really well! Did a skit. My companion, Sis Seegmiller's new companion (길수려 girl-su-reo), and Elder Helsloot's new companion all talked in church. And craziest thing!!! Remember 유옥렬? (you-ong-reor) she's the one we taught that wanted to learn more and be baptized but then dropped off the face of the earth? We called her Friday and she actually answered, and then we called her Sunday and she came to church!!!! It was so great!!! She came to sacrament and stayed for the lunch after. And then we taught her with a girl from our ward!! (김윤하 kim-youn-ha) It was so great!! Then we walked to a house about and hour and a half or so away and visited a less active. We visited her about 3 weeks ago. She's so kind!!
It's been such a fun week! My new companion is WONDERFUL and it's so fun still living with Sis. Seegmiller! Also, the weather has been absolutely beautiful! I'm so happy and I hope you are too!
P.S. the website is www.urikorea.org for the organization we made the kimchi with! Don't know if there's anything on it, but that's what it is!