Sunday, March 30, 2008

The Power of Prayer?

Yesterday the Young Men from the SamSung Ward came to the mission home to get a cooking lesson from the Elders! They wanted to know how and what missionaries eat. I just provided the kitchen and had a very amusing time watching. All ingredients were dumped in a bowl without regard to the directions. I was expecting total failure, but the biscuits and chocolate chip cookies turned out quite decent!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Time to add some Missionary Quotes!

*This past week was great. It’s like we were on fire! I has been so much fun – I can say that jondo-ing has become delicious. Before I was afraid to talk to people or I’d make excuses why I couldn’t – but this past week I broke out of that mindset. Once you open your mouth and start doing it, it becomes so much easier. All of a sudden jondo-ing isn’t a burden anymore – it’s so much fun to go out and talk to people. That’s why I’m here. I feel like a real missionary. The missionary I always pictured when I was young!

*I learned a great lesson on following the Spirit. I thought it was just another thought, but when the Spirit spoke to me a second time, I paid attention and as a result, we got to teach the first lesson to a man. Knowing that the Spirit is directing you in the work is an amazing feeling. I am really striving to search for and follow the promptings of the Spirit. I learned a great lesson!

*Last week I had many spiritual experiences. We visited a woman who told us how much pain she has in her heart and how she wants to get everything back together. She had gone to a mountain just the previous day pondering about what she needs to do. So she was surprised that we came to visit and told us that she is never home during the time that missionaries serve during the day. She thought, what a coincidence it was that we planned to visit her and that she happened to be home!!

*This was a week of blessings for us! A mission is full of too many blessings to name or list out - really, the blessings we see are far greater than any work we could ever put out, not to mention the blessings we don’t immediately recognize. Out of these blessings I would consider baptism to be the icing on the cake and Heavenly Father blessed us with icing on the cake this weekend!!! I am grateful beyond expression to have been able to serve in this area and be able to finish off my work here like this.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

New District Leaders

Some of the new District leaders came to Daejeon for training yesterday. Pictured above:
Elders Hill, McCaffree, Haight, Cianflone, Kim Hui Jae and Boyce.

Monday, March 24, 2008

March Zone Leader Council

Today zone leaders spent the day planning and preparing for our next zone conferences. As zone leaders their special responsibility is to teach, train and lead the missionaries they serve with. They know their zones well as they often participate in exchanges with both missionaries and members.
Pictured above: Elders Byun Chang Ki, Wakamatsu, President Perriton, McWhorter, Bergeron, Clegg, Kim Jong Chul, Jun Seung Chul, Adams, Greene, Richter, Quinton, Capps and Barrett.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Six Missionaries Depart for Home

Returning With Honor are left to right:
Elders Cleverley, Call, Aston and Shoemaker
Sisters Messer and Bruno
Oh, how they will be missed!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

12 New Missionaries Arrive in March!

We hit the jackpot with the largest group of incoming missionaries yet since our arrival last July! On Thursday evening we traveled to Inchon airport to meet two Sisters and four Elders from the US, and earlier in the day six Korean Elders arrived from the Korea Missionary Training Center in Seoul. They are all so wonderful. We are so excited! On their first full day we take them out to a nice lunch at a nearby Korean restaurant. For some, it is their first taste of Korean food from which there are some mixed reviews! But everyone is brave, eager and excited to begin their great 18-month or 2-year adventure.
The lower left photo shows all the new missionaries with their trainers, ready to depart to their new areas. Elder Haycock and his new companion Elder Ahn Min departed earlier.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

The Daejeon Mission Complex

We are greatly blessed to have such a nice sized piece of property located in the old section of Daejeon. Our newly renovated Samsung Chapel sits to the left. A wall divides the property with the Mission office building at the front. Upstairs is the AP's and office elders' apartment. The Mission President's residence is behind the office building. On the far right side of the office and mission home is a large parking lot.
At the corner of the parking lot is where the neighborhood deposits its' trash. We try to keep it looking somewhat tidy, but it is a constant major chore! Two nights ago there was a fire on that corner in the middle of the night that woke the Elders with people crying for help/water. The trash was partly burned and our wall is blackened, but otherwise there was no damage. You probably didn't see it on CNN!

Monday, March 3, 2008

The Power of the Book of Mormon

This is pretty amazing. One of our new members is feasting on the Book of Mormon. She is devouring the whole book, page by page and marking a few of her favorite passages! It was personal revelation from these sacred pages that gave birth to her testimony and convinced her to be baptized. As she reads she has many questions, but instead of running to call the missionaries for help, she ponders and prays and receives understanding every time. She is on fire with the excitement of her faith and testimony - a marvel and example to us all!

Saturday, March 1, 2008

More Missionary Quotes

Though this week was difficult, as always, I found the joy in the trial. Things are not moving quickly, but are moving great.

We taught a lesson and it went way good…we taught with the spirit and in unity. The Lord is taking care of us, leading and guiding us. We just keep going, trying to do what God wants, and our best all the time.

Our members are amazing! They are all so enthusiastic about the work and love to help us with missionary work! Lately when we visit members we give them a name on a card and ask them to pray real specifically for that person. It’s a great way to get the members involved. Our Stake (slogan) is to believe that you will get what you pray for. It’s going great!

For two days I spent a lot of time on my knees seeking strength and inspiration, feeling worried and weighed down, wondering what good have I done, what help I have been these past 7 months. BUT then I went to zone conference and realized that the whole meeting was directed straight at me and my needs! Does God answer prayers!! I came away with a greater testimony of something I already knew but started to forget – the outward, measurable results of our labors are not the ultimate determiner of our success, but rather the fact that we tried our best.

The end of my mission was nearing and I was a little nervous that I might not see a physical baptism before I went home. Two months before I went home we fasted and prayed to find an investigator who would get baptized. That night we taught a lesson that did not go well. I was sad. I thought, “Why aren’t we helping him progress? I am fasting, Heavenly Father, why is this not going well? Just then the Spirit taught me something that I will never forget. It was something along the lines of this: “You didn’t think it would be this easy – you fasted and prayed once. Keep going, keep working and I will give you the desires of your heart”. So I did. From that day forward I tried my best, everyday. I wasn’t perfect but I did my best. The great thing was that without even knowing it, the Lord was preparing someone…………The Lord made a way. He waited up until the last and then gave the blessings. I know that He lives and that he wants to bless us. This work, and the gospel are the only ways to be happy in this life. I know that is true. I am all the better for it. I am so thankful to Heavenly Father for giving me this life changing experience. Missions are sweet! (From a newly returned missionary!)