Saturday, October 5, 2013

Kimchi and Prairie Dogs

There are butterflies EVERYWHERE in Korea. Lets start with that happy

thought. I honestly see atleast 15 a day. They make me smile.

This week has been hard, I wont lie.
I have never expereince such interesting food in my whole life as i have in
this country. We has choosok holiday at a members house at the food was so
bad i almost couldnt eat it. i felt so discouraged as we were walking home
and i was talking to my companion and our korean sisters about how angry i
was that i couldnt eat kimchi and tofu as easily as all the other
missionaries. i was almost in tears when we passed by a store and outside
the door was a cage of PRAIRIE DOGS. (or something along the lines of that.
we werent really sure what they were honestly) we died laughing because it
was SO random. pretty sure heavenly father tknew he could cure my
discouragement with a good laugh)
We had 3 BIG meeting for Choosok week and basically the entire time our
mission president just talked about how we havent been baptizing anyone. I
really really struggled with his mindset because I feel that my purpose is
different than his. SO many of the other missionaries felt the same way.
As we were leaving the meeting we stopped by an inactive family members
house for dinner. All 4 of us sisters were feeling so discouraged. We were
confused and exhausted and starving but we went to this families house with
a smile on our faces and kept on.
After literally the most DELICIOUS meal I think Ive ever eaten, we had a
good converation with them about why they werent attending church anymore.
the sister explained that it was hard for them to attend when she felt that
LDS people portaryed a sense of fals happiness, and that others were
judgemental and hypociritacl towards her and her husband.
My heart broke when I heard this. I realize that in the Mormon culture this
can be quite a problem, and unfortunately we see so many cases similar to
this family, that people leave the church because they feel inadequate in
the shadows of other members.
Through help with translation from my sweet Korean Sister Choi, I told them
a little bit about the meeting this morning, and how frustrated and sad I
was that o much of the meeting was fouces merely on stats and baptisms. I
told her that before my mission I thought that all missioanries thought the
same way. That since you all had the same purpose you would all work in the
same wya. But the truth is that you dont. And ALL member of the church have
to deal with simliar frustrations, even missionaries. sometimes there are
people who think differently than you, or who interpret gospel priniciples
contrary to your own, but THATS OK. Religion is about connecting with a
higher being and accessing the divine love that God can and DOES offer to
us, purely and unconditionally. There is a vastness in realizing and
partaking of that love.
It was in that moment, sitting on a balcony in Gwanju, with a small gray
dog asleep on my lap, that I realized why I was on my mission- To remind
not only others, but myself that the beauty of human connection in real and
that through being a missionary or sister or mother or friend to the people
around us, we can endure even the darkest of days with the the Lord by our

And that, in and of itself is a MIRACLE.

Until the next,
Sister Pappa.

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