안녕하세요! 반갑습니다 여러분!
It is already come down to the last week of the transfer! I dont know why but it seems like this last transfer has gone by really quickly. It seems like just yesterday that I was first in 광안 with Elder 이홍빈. Things have really been good with Elder 이홍빈 and I can honestly say that by working together I have learned a lot about missionary work, Korean, Elder 이홍빈, and myself. This thursday President Barrow and the AP’s will make their calls to let all the missionaries know who is transfering where and then next Monday we will all meet at the Mission Home (Mission Center? Mission Office? I dont know what it’s called, everyone just calls it the 부) for our transfer meeting where we meet up with our new companions and head to our next areas. In Korea there is this really sweet service where you can send packages and stuff within the country for super cheap so missionaries are just able to send there suitcases that way and it is really easy. I dont really know why but it is almost always the case that missionaries dont stay in the area where they were trained for more than 3 transfers so I am probably going to be heading to a new place next week. I am really excited to see where I am going to be going and also who I am going to be serving with. I dont know why but this last week it seems like we have tons of things planned including meeting with 정대영 형재님, visiting members, doing english class and service projects, tracking down less actives, and maybe helping out at another funeral. Exciting times ahead!
All of a sudden this week has been like super cold. I think it is because of being right on the ocean, but there is tons of wind and we have had to where our big coats, scarfs, gloves, and everything we have. Because missionary work involves a lot of walking from place to place you really have to dress warm heading out. I guess it really is winter! Sadly as part of the consequence of the cold there arent as many people out on the streets to talk to which has made 전도 a little more difficult but luckily places like the subways and buses are always full of people to talk to.
I think this may have actually happened the last week but there is a funny story that I neglected to mention. Elder 이홍빈 and I were walking along one of the big streets in our area toward our apartment at the end of the night. We had just finished going to visit someone and as we were walking home were talking to the people we met trying to find new people to teach. Anyway there was this one guy that we met and as soon as I said hi to him he immediately brightened up and started talking to us super eagerly. It was really hard for me to understand him because he was slurring his words really badly (Elder 이홍빈 said even he couldnt understand him well) but after walking for a little bit with him bumping in to me a ton and not talking super coherently Elder 이홍빈 and I quickly deduced that he was quite drunk. So matter how much we told him he didnt need to he insisted on buying us a bunch of desserts for us to take home from a bread shop and really wanted to take us out for a drink. Not really sure what to do we thankfully accepted the bread, gave him a pamphlet, and told him to call us later. I have to admit I was pretty confused the whole time, and sadly we havent had any calls since, but I guess being dragged around the streets of Busan to random bread shops by drunk men is just all in a days work of a Korea Busan missionary.
As far as new things this week on Friday we met with a bunch of people from the advanced class of our english class to go out to lunch. I think I have said this before but our english class is one of the biggest in the mission with about 30 people coming regularly including some members and former investigators. Anyway I teach the advanced class which has about 10 people who come regularly and they are almost all really good at english, rich, and old. They are mostly retired people but one of them is a big architect who designed a bunch of famous Busan buildings, another works for a big Korean news agency and has a daughter who is a famous anchorwoman, and others are school teachers, housewives, and everything inbetween. Anyway they somehow heard it was coming down to the end of the transfer and they took me and Elder 이홍빈 out for lunch. We met at the church and the drove us (in one of their super nice cars) to this really nice (expensive looking) 삼계탕 (this Korean ginseng soup with a whole, small chicken in it) restaurant where we all ate together. Even though one of them tried to convince us to drink some strange Korean alcohol (which luckily Elder 이홍빈 was there to tell me what it was) a bunch, the food was super good and it was really fun.
One thing that I have really been thinking about a lot this week and this whole transfer is gratitude. It seems like everywhere I look I hear things about gratitude from our mission newsletter from president Barrow, letters from home, the thanksgiving holiday, talks in church, conference talks, english class messages, and even district meeting this week. Especially this week at district meeting I was in charge of doing our 실습 (teaching practice) on gratitude. Through all of this it has really reminded me that if we have gratitude through the good times and the bad we can not only be happier and more positive, but heavenly father will bless us and we can more acutely recognize the blessings that we have already received. I am grateful to be serving as missionary where I am and alongside who I am, I am grateful for my family and my friends who helped me to get here, and I am grateful for the teachings of this church and my opportunity to share it with everyone as a missionary.
Have a great week! Look forward to the big news of where I am going in next Monday!
안녕히 계세요! 사랑합니다!