This week has been so busy Im not even sure how to throw it all in here. How bout we start with CONFERENCE? Oh my heavens, remind me why I never was that interested in it before I came on my mission. I love love love love love love love (and on and on and on) Conference. All the talks had something valuable to say and I loved each of them. I literally cannot wait when 6 months comes around and we have the opportunity to hear from the prophet and his apostles again. we had the opportunity to watch the Saturday session at our stake center with all the English speaking missionaries and we watched it with smiles on our faces eating chocolate covered sunflower seeds from Trader Joes. It gave us much comfort to sit in that room on Saturday and to sit on our ward building on Sunday, a group of young 18, 19, 20 year olds, far away from family and anything familiar and listen to words in our own tongue and know that we are loved and prayed for as missionaries. It was a small piece of home and I cant wait to feel it again in 6 months.
On Tuesday we went to Daejeon for a meeting with all the trainers and trainees. Although meetings sometimes make me wanna stick a fork in my head, all the world is right when I get to see my Sister Arvanitas. She cried when she saw me and wouldnt let me go. When she finally did she said, with the biggest smile on her face- "Look! I dressed like you today! Are you so proud?!"". I must say that I was proud of her in her black and tan with an olive green cargo jacket. Shes the cutest and I missed her so very much. She is doing GREAT things in Yaesong (yes, i am talking to you nitas chameneem.)
After our training meeting we had the honor, I kid you not, of going to COSTCO. For all you American missionaries, (basically Kensey), LOVE YOUR COSTCO. There are some who are in Asia Land, wishing for bulk granola bars and peanut butter that doesnt cost 18,000 Won (Translation, 20$. ....... We still bought it.) The place was a MADHOUSE. Apparently it was 'Korean Alphabet Day' and so everyone and their dog decided to go shopping. We waited in line for atleast 30 minutes and had to fight our way to the elevator with our precious cargo- Peanut Butter, Pancake Mix, Nature Valley Granola Bars and the most precious of our buys- A box of Costco cookies. Which for the record I probably would have never eaten in America but guess what, Im in Asia and you can bet that those cookies were gone in 2 days. #youonlymissiononce
On top of our personal buys, we also paid a pretty penny for candy for our ward halloween party! If anything in this life is difficult, its trying to plan an AMERICAN Christmas party in .... NOT America.
'Lets do the donut eating game!'
....Donuts are too expensive.
'Lets have a chili cook off!'
.... no one eats chili or owns a crock pot.
'Lets carve pumpkins!'
....They only EAT pumpkins.
Do you feel in our pain? We finally came up with a few games and a "history of Halloween" presentation. For the record, none of us know any facts about Halloween. To which our Korean missionaries stare at us, blinking and say "wait, you celebrate this holiday every year and you dont even know why?'
NOPE. The thought of carving vegetables and going house to house asking strangers for candy never really struck us as odd. Welcome to America, anything goes.
On another note, guess who is in charge of the face painting station? (you guessed it.) We cant wait to invite our investogators and have them get to know the ward members. It'll be great, I just know it.
My companion and I have really been focusing on our area book lately and we actually have had some success! We met with one of the Americans in the area who was being taught by the missionaries a while back. She is here teaching English and she is so friendly. We are really hoping that even if she isnt receptive to the gospel, she will know that we love her and hope she remembers that feeling. People rarely if ever recognize the spirit as the spirit, and my companion and i know this. Even if she doesnt want to hear about the gospel, she will feel the spirit in some way or another. As members of the church, we are promised to have that spirit with us as long as we keep his comandments- We are trying our very best to keep it with us always so that we can help others to feel it.
We have been calling I swear, HUNDREDS of people from the Area book, and my sweet companion decided to give me a little bit more responsibility and have ME do the phone calls. This is basically all I can say-
'Is this blahblahblahs phone?'
'This is the 'foreginer missionary'
'Im from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints'
'We want to meet you again'
.. and then they start blabbing something in Korean and I throw the phone to my companion, who always saves the day. (Thanks, Sister Spencer.)
In other news, there is a mentally handicapped YW in our ward who is obsessed with me. She sits next to me in class and whispers in my ear "I love you. You're pretty." ITS ADORABLE. Slightly inconvenient seeing as even during the prayer she is still whispering in my ear telling me this repeatedly and PINCHING MY CHEEKS. BAHA. I love it. She surely is one of Gods most righteous spirits in the life before this one. Shes the cutest.
This gospel is great, my testimony becomes strengthened more and more each day, and even though this work is exhausting and sometimes even heartbreaking, I come home each day with tired feet and sometimes a sting of homesickness or discouragement but know that what I am doing is GOOD.
Even the BAD days are good.
I love you each, very very much and pray for you every day and every night. I hope this week you find someone or something to make you smile. Life is beautiful.
xoxo Sista Pappa
The FOURTH baptism we have had in our ward this transfer. We joke that in the Chumdeon Ward, we have a fourth hour of church just for baptisms. My companion and I so excited to have TWO on the 20th!
Service Project from a few weeks ago. The blue vests were a nice touch.