Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Photos from Korea~November 12, 2012

[Happy Halloween.]

[Our new pjs.]pPhi

Letter from Elder Rife~November 12, 2012

Hey everyone!

Last week was a busy week. And it's starting to get cold! Last winter really wasn't that bad. I only really remember being extremely cold 2-3 times. I always wore so many clothes that I never really felt too cold. But from what I have heard this winter is supposed to be like 10 times colder than last year. I always ask people why this winter will be colder than last and they say "global warming." How can global "warming" make winter in South Korea colder? haha. Anyway, I'm grateful for the cold weather because I can handle it a lot better than the sweltering heat and humidity of Seoul in the summer.

Last Tuesday afternoon we picked up a new investigator named Brother Gwon. He's in his 50's and tracked us down on the street 2 weeks ago and said he wanted to meet and that he wanted us to help him with English a little bit. When we met on Tuesday he said that he wants to learn the gospel and will even come to church. He couldn't come yesterday because of a wedding but said that he will come next Sunday, so that will be good! Besides that we spent time out proselyting but because of the weather there weren't many people outside. We also taught English class at night and made message cards with pictures of me and Elder Kim on them to give to our members when we visit them.

Wednesday our whole zone got together for lunch at Costco and then Zone Training meeting..\ Then we headed back home and then to I-mun to meet Sister Park to talk to her about what we had read out of the Book of Mormon and the Bible. We got to teach her more about the plan of salvation and had a really good meeting with her. Then we met with Brother Kim. In Korea a lot of the investigators we meet with aren't usually the "prepared" investigators that everyone wants to find. The investigators where you can just teach them the 4 lessons and then they accept the gospel and want to be baptized. So I've learned that in Korea a lot of the people don't really have interest in the gospel that much but just like to meet, which means that it is our job to prepare them and to teach them. We are sort of in the preparing phase with Brother Kim. We are trying to narrow down his needs and find something that we can teach that will have a lot of meaning to him. I'll talk more about him in a minute.

Thursday we met a really cool kid that I met outside of our church on the previous Sunday. His name is Gabriel and he's from Hong Kong. He came to Korea for 5 days for vacation and came walking up by our church on Sunday with all his luggage trying to find his hotel. I helped him find it and then told him I was a missionary and asked him if we could meet for lunch before he went home and he said yes. So we met on Thursday and got food together and found out that he had seen missionaries a lot in Hong Kong and had talked to them a few times. We got to teach him a little bit more about the church and got his information so that we can keep in touch with him and hopefully help him to meet with the missionaries in Hong Kong. He left Thursday night to go back home. After meeting him we went out and delivered some message cards to members and then we went to a big college in Dongdaemun's area at night to proselyte. It was sooo fun and we met a really cool kid who is going to meet us again this week!

On Friday we met again with Sister Park. She had a few questions about the Book of Mormon so we went through them with her. She is constantly asking us questions about our church. The more we talk the more she realizes that what we believe is what she thinks deep down. She knows our church is true. She just needs to keep reading the Book of Mormon!

On Saturday we proselyted over to I-mun and then taught English class and then we came back to Dongdaemun and ate dinner and then met with a Mongolian family that lives in Dongdaemun's area. It's a couple and the wife's Mom. The wife speaks Korean really well and her husband speaks Korean pretty well but the Mom only speaks Mongolian. We showed them the church building and sang hymns with them and talked to them for a while. The reason we met with them is because the Mom is not a member and wants to get baptized. The wife and her husband are both members and the husband served a mission. So since I am the district leader and will be doing the baptismal interview with the mom I wanted to get to know them a little bit better. When we do the interview the Mom's daughter will have to be there too to translate. I'm trying to have the Mom's daughter teach me how to bear my testimony in Mongolian before then so that I can share my testimony in Mongolian during the interview. They are such amazing people and I feel like a better person for having known them.

Yesterday we had a really cool miracle. Sister Park and Sister Hong didn't come to church so we were sitting alone on our bench and then halfway through sacrament meeting a couple walked in and sat down next to us. I didn't recognize them but I assumed that they were members of a different ward or something so I handed them each a hymn book because we were singing a hymn and then when I looked back at them they looked really confused. I immediately knew that they weren't members. After the meeting we talked and found out that they were friends from school and were looking for truth so they wanted to come to our church. So we took them upstairs and talked with them for a minute and got to know them better and taught them a little lesson about Heavenly Father. They want to know more about our church so we got their number and will keep in touch with them. Super cool! After church there were a lot of meetings for us to attend so we didn't make it home until 4 and then we had companionship study til 5 and then dinner till 6. Then we went to meet with Brother Kim. We had a bold lesson about the Book of Mormon. We talked about the Bible and why it can't be perfect. I feel like before last night we had spent a lot of time meeting him and getting to know more about him and building a relationship with him so last night when we were a little bit more bold with him it wasn't like Bible bashing or anything at all. It was a really good meeting. We testified about the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith and committed him to read the Book of Mormon more and to read it with an open heart.

Last week was an amazing week! I've been thinking a lot about 1 Nephi 15:11. It talks about the process for receiving answers to our prayers. I've shared it a lot with investigators lately. Four steps to getting an answer to prayer: 1. Humility 2. Faith 3. Real intent (believing) 4. diligence in keeping commandments.

I love you all!!!

-Elder Rife

Monday, November 5, 2012

Photos from Korea~November 5, 2012

[Elder Kim and me.]

[Our Halloween party.]

[Me and Elder Moon.]

[Me and Elder Olsen after a stake activity.]

Letter from Elder Rife~November 5, 2012

Hey everyone! This last week was really good!! I literally have like ten minutes to write about it so I'll try to write as much as I can.

Last Tuesday we picked up a new investigator named Sister Lee. Apparently she is famous in Korea because she and her twin sister play the 가야금 which is a Korean traditional harp.. They play together and sing pop songs and stuff. Her sister got honors from the president of Korea for being the best Korean harp player in the country. We met her at the church on Tuesday with some of the couple missionaries as our members present and we had a really good lesson. Sister Lee was someone I called from an old investigator record and she was super happy to meet again and really just wants to learn about the Book of Mormon and where it came from and why we need it. So she has tons of potential and I'm really excited to teach her!

On Wednesday I did a district meeting about becoming sanctified and we used a lot of the scriptures and things I have been thinking about lately for the meeting and it went well. I felt like everyone learned something new.

We met with Sister Park again last week and I felt some inspiration to make a deal with her to read the whole Book of Mormon by January 16th which is how long I will be here (at least). She accepted the deal and was really excited because she wanted to read it but felt like she needed something to push her. She told me that it was revelation from God to suggest that we start reading the Book of Mormon together. We are also going to read some of the Bible together at her request which I was okay with as long as we are reading the Book of Mormon too. So now we are all going to read 3 chapters each day until January 16th!

We met with a lot of our investigators last week and had a lot of good things happen but I don't have time to write them. Things are going amazingly lately and I am loving every second of my mission!

Thanks for all of your support! I love you!

-Elder Rife