Sunday, January 25, 2015

다시 한번 일주일 잘 보냈다

(Translation courtesy of Google Translate: "Once a week well spent")
hmmmm.... wish I had an Elder Edwards translation!

Elder Dye, Elder Choi's trainee.
He's from Logan, Utah and knows the Simmons!

Elder Weight and I had a blast this week. We worked super hard and talked to and taught a lot of people and taught a fair amount of lessons! Neither of us know why, but we're seeing a ton of miracles recently. People on the street are being nicer and more receptive (there are still really mean people, but we're starting to find more accepting and kind people), more appointments are being made, when we make calls to get appointments, it's way more effective than usual, and we're finding investigators. It's really awesome. We're both really excited. We proselyted SO much for our first 2 transfers together, so it finally feels like some of that hard work is coming together and getting us people to teach. We're making a lot of calls this week as well because it's so effective, and while we usually only got 1 or 2 appointments a week by calls, now we're getting 1 or 2 a day. Neither of us know why it's working so well, but we're definitely grateful and using it as much as we can!

Ice skating last P-day! 
All of my dreams of being an olympic figure skater are crushed... 
I'm pretty terrible at skating.

Every elder in our house (6 man house) can hold a pitch, which is a first in my whole mission! Usually there's one or two elders in a house who can sing okay, but in this house, everyone can hold a pitch and sing pretty good. So every time we sing (before comp study, and before planning), we all gather in the living room and divide up parts and sing our hearts out. It's so fun. Hymns are so great.

Elder Choi and I on exchanges this week.

A little update on some investigators:
  • Brother Yoo. He didn't come to church this week and we can't get a hold of him. :( But we'll hopefully be able to get in contact this week.
  • Brother Eelhyung. He's our 15 year old investigator. He really likes the church and the Book of Mormon. He punks a lot, but he's a good kid.
  • Jason. Jason is from Nepal and SUPER nice. He's really strong in his own faith and isn't sure he needs to get baptized in this church because he was already baptized, but he's reading the Book of Mormon a lot and praying to know if it's true. Pray that he can receive that answer! 

Ice cream in the winter. Cold.

Sometimes we get calls from people trying to sell us stuff (in Korean). We answer the phone like a Korean, but then when we figure out that it's spam, we'll usually just say in really broken Korean "I... be... foreigner..." and then they hang up super fast. It's super effective.

I love you all! Have a wonderful week!
Love, Elder Edwards

Ready to email!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

펀크 한번도 안났네요!!

(Translation courtesy of Elder Edwards: "We didn't get punked once!")

This week was awesome. And super funny. Elder Weight lost his voice and couldn't really talk from last Saturday (the 10th) to this Wednesday (the 15th)... which is something I probably shouldn't laugh about, but it was SO funny. It also meant that I made a ton of calls while he tried to be effective by filling out records and stuff. It's REALLY hard to do missionary work without a voice as a full time missionary without access to social networks or anything.

P.S. Here's my "I'm on the computer" picture. :)

Monday was a good P-day. We toured the market here in Dongdaemun. It's the biggest market in Korea! And it's ENORMOUS. Just shop after shop after shop selling fruit and vegetables and spices and herbs and garlic and raw fish and dried fish and cooked fish and live fish and hairy dog legs and larvae and anything and everything you can think of. We bought two things... one squid (dead) and one stingray (fermented). We ate the stingray, and it was super super super gross. They fermented it in some pretty potent chemicals, and my throat and mouth felt funny for an hour after eating just one bite of it. And we threw the squid at Elder Weight's face. And filmed it with a slow motion camera. I'll see if I can get the video sent over there. :) The reason for throwing a squid at Elder Weight's face, you ask? We didn't really have a reason. It just sounded fun.

Tuesday and Wednesday were spent really busily going to mission leadership meeting, preparing for zone training meeting, and doing the zone training meeting. It went really well. The focus this month is on commitments, specifically the baptismal commitment. The number of baptismal dates has been going down mission wide for the past 2 or 3 months, so we're focusing on it a lot and working on helping investigators commit to living the gospel and get baptized!

Last but not least... we had the COOLEST day of all time on Saturday. We had 6 appointments lined up for that day, plus English class and ward mission council. It was looking to be a busy day. Usually on days like that, about 1 or 2 of the people actually meet with us and we spend the rest of the day proselyting. But, this past Saturday, EVERY single person met with us and we got to teach all of them. We were literally running from appointment to appointment all day. It was a day full of miracles and even opportunities to serve. Our 4oclock appointment actually didn't show up, but as soon as we hung up the phone call saying he couldn't meet, a guy called and said he was in the area and wanted to be taught right then. So we got to teach him instead. Elder Weight and I just spent 8 solid hours doing nothing but teaching and running in between appointments. An awesome day.

I love you all!
Love, Elder Edwards

Remember the video they filmed in December of missionaries bearing their testimonies in Korean? You can see it here:

Sunday, January 11, 2015

제목 없음 (ie: No subject)

Here we are emailing!
This week was good!

Monday was a fairly good P-day, spent shopping at Costco. They say Costco is a store for families because the amount is so big. But I believe that it's a store for hungry, 20 year old missionaries. We got a lot of food there. Then proselyted and met with a less active.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, we spent all day in the house because Elder Weight was puking his guts out. I won the best companion in the world award because I cleaned out his throw up bucket every time after he threw up. I'm probably going to be the best husband ever. But really, to be honest, it was really gross. So, I spent 2 straight days making calls to potential investigators. It was pretty tedious, but I was able to set a ton of appointments and teach some lessons over the phone!

Elder Weight sick in bed.

Thursday and Friday were spent on exchanges with the Assistants. I stayed here in Dongdaemun with Elder Choi soobum, who is the brand new assistant. He is super awesome and started his mission just a couple months before me. He's a fun guy... I met him for the first time on my first P-day in Korea when Elder Goo and I went to pick up my foreigner card. Because I was a brand new missionary and didn't really know Korean, Elder Choi taught me to introduce myself to people by saying "저를 때려주세요" ("please beat me"). Our exchange was really good. We met a lot of cool people and I learned how to be better at teaching and talking according to people's needs. A shout out to Jaron over there in England... Being Assistant sure seems hard. Keep working hard and good luck!

Eating something called ohdang. I think the best description for
ohdang would be boiled fish paste. It's actually not that bad.

The weekend was good. We had 6 appointments set up for Saturday (I think that's the most I've ever had in one day in my whole mission), and 3 of them actually met! It was a miracle. One of them is a 15 year old junior high school student. His name is Brother Lee. He's cute. We taught him about the Book of Mormon and invited him to read it and pray about it. He really likes us and enjoys meeting with us. We met him for the first time on Saturday, and we'll meet him again this coming Thursday! Brother Yoo is doing pretty good. He came to church again, and we got to teach him during the 3rd hour of church. And we got to teach the lesson with President Christensen!! President and Sister Christensen came to Dongdaemun ward for a baptism yesterday, so President decided he would teach with us. It was really cool. We taught Brother Yoo the Plan of Salvation, but not a lot actually stuck in his head. He's kind of old and has a lot of other stuff going on, so it'll take quite a while for him to be ready and understand to be baptized and become a member. But, we're working with him!

"Be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves." (James 1:22). 

"My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and truth." (1 John 3:18). 

These two scriptures really stood out to me this week during personal study. We need to learn to become people who ACT, who DO, who MAKE the world a better place. Going to Zone conference, district meeting, devotionals, seminary, and General Conference and hearing the word is great and all, but the thing that really benefits us and our surroundings is when we APPLY and EXECUTE according to the principles we are learning. That's what Christ is inviting us to do: to become like Him and become perfect in word, tongue, deed, and truth.

I love you all!
Love, Elder Edwards

Sunday, January 4, 2015

새해가 시작된다

(Translation courtesy of Google Translate: "The New Year Begins")

A good start to the New Year! New Years Eve and New Years Day were spent proselyting... all day. I proselyted more this week than I have any other week on my mission. I'm tired, but Elder Weight and I totally killed it! The bummer was the fact that there weren't a bunch of people outside so we could talk to them... they were all inside getting drunk. We talked to a fair amount of drunk guys on New Years Eve. They bestow wisdom upon us fortunate missionaries. One of the SUPER drunk guys wouldn't let us leave for 15 minutes and told us that "people who do their best are beautiful, even in the bathroom." Huh. Lesson learned: Alcohol isn't good neither is it desirable.

Elder Weight and me.

Also, I turned 22! The Korean age system is pretty strange, so I turned 22 years old on the first of January, even though I won't even turn 21 until this coming May...

This past Tuesday was our zone's temple day, so we skipped studies and headed over to the temple and did a session and then had P-day. It was awesome. I'm grateful to be able to go to the temple sometimes over here, but it's going to be really awesome when I can go as often as I want over in America.

Waiting for the sunrise...

On New Years Day morning, we got up at 5 o clock in the morning and then went and hiked a local mountain with one of our members to watch the sunrise. We got there about 40 minutes early and then stood there in the freezing cold until the sun finally came up. Seeing the sunrise was cool, but I'm not sure if it was worth waiting in the frigid cold. It took me 2 hours to get warm after we got home.

The first sunrise of the New Year!

Transfer calls came! I will be staying with Elder Weight for a 3rd transfer here in Dongdaemun, which I'm super excited for!


Brother Yoo came to church yesterday, but he had to leave after the 2nd hour so we weren't able to teach him, which was a bummer. We met a lot of really cool people in the past 2 weeks and had great lessons, but almost none of them have showed up to return appointments. But, we're still keeping in contact with them diligently, and hopefully they'll be able to meet here in the near future.

I love you all! I hope you go into this new year with goals and resolutions to be better disciples and followers of Jesus Christ!

Love, Elder Edwards