Sunday, April 29, 2012

Letter from Elder Rife~April 30, 2012

Hi everyone! I've been in Wonju for more than a month now. Time is flying by!

Last week was our temple week so we rode a train in to Seoul last Monday after we emailed. When we got to Seoul we had interviews with President Lee, ate and contacted for about an hour in Seoul. Then we went to the Dongdaemoon house because it's big and that's where our whole zone sleeps when we go to Seoul. We had a sleepover with the 4 missionaries who are serving there and then we woke up early and headed over to the temple. After the temple I went out to eat with Bishop Cho and then we went to Dongdaemoon to do some shopping and then we went to Costco so I could restock on food. After that we were supposed to meet up with other missionaries from our zone at the Dongdaemoon house to head back to our areas but everyone was late. So we ended up on the 9 o'clock train back to Wonju and miraculously we were in the door at 10:31PM. We rode a train that is way faster than normal.

Wednesday we woke up (the Taebaek elders slept over) and headed to the church and had our district meeting. We watched Joseph Smith Prophet of the Restoration and talked about Joseph Smith's role as a prophet and our roles as missionaries. It went really well. After that my companion and I knocked some doors and visited one of our members.

Thursday we had AP exchanges!! Elder Summers (who was my zone leader when I was in Bundang) wanted to do exchanges with me one last time before he goes home so he came out to Wonju and went on exchanges with me and my companion. We had such a good day and saw tons of miracles! We spent the afternoon at a college campus contacting college students and posting our English class flyers on all of the bulletin boards. We talked to tons of college students and it was way fun to be on the college campus. The first thing we did was ask for permission to put our flyers up and to contact people so it worked really well. After that we went to the church and got the streetboards and went in to the busiest part of town and streetboarded for about an hour an a half. People kept coming up to us while we were by the boards and were setting up appointments with us. It happened three times. It was the weirdest thing. Apparently all you have to do is stand there and you can set up appointments. All of them were for our 30/30 program but still it was awesome. I'm gonna keep doing that each week so that we can see more miracles like that. Then we went home and ate dinner and then went and visited two less-active members. It was really fun and we made some progress with them. We want to get closer with them and tell them that we need them back at church. It was way fun to go on exchanges with Elder Summers. I learned a lot!

Friday we had weekly planning for three hours and then we went out and walked the streets for a few hours and contacted people. It was hard because it was "Market Day." Six times a month they have market day in the market and everyone in all of Wonju is there buying stuff. But we walked through the market and met with a guy we had contacted the last time they did market day. He speaks really good English. We gave him a Book of Mormon and we're gonna go back and meet with him next market day to talk to him more. 

Friday night we had 3 dinners! I thought I was gonna die. I ate a huge bowl of spaghetti and chicken at home.. Then we went to go visit 안순을, the single mother; she wanted to give us food so we ate Chinese food with her. Then we visited another member in the area and she wanted to feed us so she fed us 닭갈비. I really thought I was going to die after I ate all of it. Then we barely made it home on time.

Saturday was our English teaching day again. It was fun though and good to do more service. We watched the Restoration video during English class and we also watched it with 정진택. He really liked it and we talked about it for a while after but he's really set on his church and hasn't really been making any progress. I don't want to drop him yet though.

On Sunday my companion and I spoke at church. Our Branch President told us that one of the speakers couldn't make it and that he needed one of us to speak but since we are a companionship we just decided that both of us would speak. We spoke about Jesus Christ and His Atonement. I didn't have a whole lot of time to prepare so I just chose two scriptures that I wanted to share then wrote down everything I wanted to say in English. Then I went up and translated what I had written into Korean while I spoke. It actually worked pretty well and I was able to say what I wanted to say. We each talked for about 5 minutes or so. I shared 2 Nephi 2:6-8 and Alma 34:9. They are some of my favorite scriptures about the Atonement. After church we talked to the members after for a little while then headed home and ate lunch. Then we went out and knocked doors for the afternoon since it was Sunday and lots of people are in their homes on Sundays. After that we ate a quick dinner and started walking to the other side of our area. 

We met with a  lady named 김상경 who we have been meeting pretty regularly. She wants her son to be baptized so we started teaching him yesterday. He's ten years old and is a stud. He comes to church every week because the primary president brings him and his older brother. His mom hasn't been coming to church for a while. He said that he didn't want to be baptized the first time we talked to him about it. Then yesterday we taught him how to pray and when he prayed he said.."Please bless that I can prepare well to be baptized." He already knows everything that we taught him because he learned it in Primary so it was kind of a review for him. He's such a cute little kid though and we're gonna set a date with him for like 3 weeks from now to be baptized!

It was such a good week!! 이상혁 (the little kid) was our biggest miracle for the week! Anyway, I love you all! Thanks so much for your support.

-Elder Rife

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