Monday, April 28, 2014

더 기쁜 희소식

(Translation, courtesy of Google Translate: The good news is nice.)


Elder Whiting of the Quorum of the Seventy came to Korea for a tour of the Korea Seoul mission. One of his stops was in Wonju, where our zone and a neighboring zone all gathered together to listen to him in our church. It was kind of exciting. The Assistants came the night before with one of our Zone leaders to help set up, and they slept over at our house. We had 10 missionaries crammed in our house that night. I got stuck on the fake wood floor. My mat and blanket and hoodie all got stolen, so it was a little bit of a rough night. But I had my fan. So it was okay. Just really cold.

Elder Kafusi, one of our assistants. He's enormous.
And his pants.

Transfer calls came! We're losing both of our sisters and Elder Diede. The sisters' area will be white washed (which means that both the sisters leave and 2 new sisters will come in, instead of just 1 leaving and 1 coming.) Elder Hansen will be together for another transfer. That makes this one the 3rd! That's pretty long, but I love him so it's all good.

Me and Elder Diede.
Good props make for good pictures.

Brother Kim punked every appointment that we made this week until we finally met him after church yesterday with a member at the church. He got 36 hours of community service last week, and he did all 36 hours and that's why he said he couldn't meet. His parents are getting divorced and his mom moves out next week... which leaves him in a bit of an interesting situation. He needs to start school back up again, and will probably keep attending here in Wonju and live on his own away from his dad. I feel for him. We talked with him about the church and baptism and concerns and commandments, and he said that he still wants to be baptized. We pulled out a calendar and showed it to him, and he chose the 18th of May! We went through all the baptismal interview questions and he's still doing great. He's even been reading in the Book of Mormon and praying every day since last Sunday. Happy, happy news. So we'll keep meeting with him for the next 3 weeks and keep teaching him and helping him strengthen his testimony until his baptism.

Wonju had a baptism on Saturday with the sisters' investigator! It was good to see all the branch members come together and support the newest member of Wonju branch. The last baptism that Wonju had was back in October, so people were pretty excited.

Korea is awesome!
Love, Elder Edwards

Tool time in the elevator mirror.
Running in the morning.

Sunday, April 20, 2014


We played a lot of Basketball this week. The more I play, the more painfully aware I become that I really can't play basketball at all. But it was fun and I scored a few points, believe it or not. Also went on 2 exchanges today, one with Elder Diede and the other with one of our zone leaders, Elder MoonHoBum. (Dallen, I think you'll laugh at that name a little bit.). He's Korean, and it was really fun to chill and work with him for two days, speaking Korean. It's been a long time since I've had a native in my house, so it was really nice.

I think every person in our district got sick this week. All colds except for Sister Kim, who has been throwing up for 5 days now. The doctors don't really know what's wrong with her. I gave her 2 priesthood blessings, and she was able to come to church this Sunday. Hopefully she'll get better this week.

Nightly shenanigans. They were having a contest to see how many grapes they could fit in their mouth. I think they got up to 50 something. Seeing as I can't even fit an egg in my mouth, I settled for the nose.
No suits season!!!

We have a member family that lives on an airforce base who invites us over for meals fairly often. After the meal, as we were walking back to the front gate, an official came and kicked us off the base! He kicked us off because we looked like missionaries and he didn't want us to proselyte on the base (which we weren't). But now I can say that I got kicked off a base!

I've been agonizing how to write this letter for the past 24 hours... No baptism. It's kind of difficult for words to describe what it feels like to meet Brother Kim for 5 weeks and see him every day for the past week and then have absolutely nothing on Sunday. No call, no text, no show. Later in the day he made contact and wanted to meet. It turns out there was a situation that prevented him from coming to the baptism, but something has changed. He's lost desire and doesn't know if he'll keep meeting with us or go to church or be baptized. We also learned a few things that he hadn't told us before. I'm... kind of numb.  I feel like I should be learning a lesson from all of this that will make me a better missionary or person or something, but I can't figure that one out either.
I love you all.
Love, Elder Edwards

Here are some pictures from last week's P-day trip to the Buddhist Temple.

I don't really know if this snake was safe or not, but we still totally picked it up.
Water yoga. Upward Dog.
Downward Dog.
This was a lame waterfall that Elder Roskelley and I ran to.

Monday, April 14, 2014

절에 갔다

I've reached a new level in my easily falling asleep ability. I can successfully fall asleep sitting cross legged, and at night my average is pillow to unconscious in 2 minutes. And last P-day I totally fell asleep while the hair cutter lady was cutting my hair. Nailed it. It was a really comfy chair. This makes me sound like a really lazy missionary... I work hard, I promise!

We said goodbye (dropped) our pastor investigator this week. He wasn't progressing and was only meeting to talk about religion, not to investigate our church. I was kind of really sad to say goodbye to him. But we don't have time to just sit around and talk about various religions... We're here with a calling to help other people come unto Christ by faith, repentance, baptism, and all that other good stuff.

Brother Kim is doing great. Except his mom fell off a roof and hurt her spine. And Brother Kim has been in 2 car accidents since we started teaching him. He asked us why God was doing these things too him. We testified about the purpose of this life and how we are here to be tested, so there must be trials. He's a good kid, and he'll be okay. He's getting baptized in a week! This week he brought a friend to the discussions, and now his friend has a baptismal date too!!! I'm not sure how far this one will go, but I'm grateful the Brother Kim is awesome enough to introduce his friends to the missionaries.

Our branch is going to have a branch conference next month, so we're preparing a special musical number. All of us missionaries and a few members are gathering once a week to learn and perfect "A Child's Prayer". It sounds sweet. I like singing, and it's especially great with all of our wonderful Korean members.

Sorry I'm late emailing today. We totally went to a Buddhist temple and just got back an hour ago. A lot of Buddhist temples are open to the public to go to and take pictures and see the sights. It was SO sweet. I remembered that I was in Asia, which I forget sometimes. I took tons of pictures, but sadly I forgot my card reader, so ya'll are just going to have to wait until next week.

Conference was fantastic. I feel more and more appreciative for Conference every time I watch. I feel like I learn more every time as well. How blessed we are to have a prophet who knows what's up and is guiding the church today through revelation from God.

Korea is awesome. I love you all.
Love, Elder Edwards

Monday, April 7, 2014

저는 연차 대회 보고 싶다

(Translation: I would like to see General Conference)

Good week. I'm sorry if these emails are ever boring... I struggle so hard every Monday to make these sufficiently long and entertaining. But they're still really short. Sorry.

Brother Kim is doing swimmingly. He's completely off cigarettes, he just recently finished First Nephi, and he loves learning! I'm so grateful to be able to teach him. The down side of Brother Kim this week is that he was in TWO car accidents. One in his own car, which sent his car to a car shop and banged up his head a little, and the second while he was in a bus, which sent him to the hospital for a little bit due to a banged up knee. So we didn't get to see him much this week because he was in and out of the hospital. BUT, he's doing just fine now. We weren't able to contact him for a period of 5 days there, so we were naturally worried. When I finally got a hold of him he told me that even though he'd been hurting all week, he'd been reading the Book of Mormon faithfully every night. He's awesome.

A sweet exercise/stretching thing that we found.

Last P-day we ran to the church after email and lugged the ping pong table out into the parking lot to play some sweet outdoor ping pong. We got plenty of weird stares, because foreigners get plenty of stares here. It's all good, I guess. Except when we get weird people that are kind of infatuated with us. We ate at a restaurant the other day, and an 80 year old women stood right at our table and stared at us for 3ish minutes. Talk about awkward. Then she slapped me on the back and said "이뻐!" (you're pretty.) Welcome to being a foreigner in Korea. And then we played wall ball. Hello, 4th grade. It's been a while since I played wall ball.

I hope it's been a great conference weekend for ya'll. I don't get to watch conference until this coming weekend, due to the fact that they have to translate it into Korean so our little Wonju branch can watch it all together. So no conference this weekend. :( But I'm pumped for this Saturday!

The assistants to the President. I look like a small child.

We met a guy on the street that invited us into his house for some coffee. We told him we don't drink coffee, so he gave us grape juice instead. He had zero gospel interest, but plenty of English interest. We'll probably start the Family English Program with him and his family. (6 weeks, meet twice a week for an hour each meeting, 30 minutes of English and 30 minutes of the Gospel.) It should be good, I hope. He kept telling Elder Hansen and I that we were just incredible at Korean, which is good to hear every once and a while, because I sure don't feel incredible. :)

Korea is still pretty sweet.

I love you all!
Love, Elder Edwards

Hairless. And white.
Funny story. I had some time before bed on Tuesday (which is rare and precious), so I decided to take a hot shower. I was just chilling, enjoying the water, when I saw a razor. 25 minutes later, my right leg was totally hairless. It was awesome. I didn't even cut myself! I gained an new appreciation for women. Shaving takes FOREVER.