Another week gone (said in my best Dumbledore voice). Also, I'm almost at my year-in-the-country mark. Thinking about it kind of makes me start to hyperventilate. SO WEIRD. But anyway, before I begin COURTNEY. I got your package! I love you I love you I love you! I know you said it's supposed to be a makeup bag, but it's too beautiful to ruin with makeup so I'm using it as a scripture case and I love it. And I love you too, so THANK YOU.
Korean Fun Fact #12
Produce! We eat a lot of it, but we almost never buy it. Especially fruit. I remember when I first got here and I saw the prices for fruit and I nearly fainted. So expensive. (If Korea is like Japan, fruit is definitely expensive. I remember paying 25 dollars for a watermelon and 2.50 for one apple. Sydney was just little then.)But luckily Koreans always eat fruit after dinner so whenever we have an appointment with members we can eat fruit for free! The funnest thing about produce in Korea is that we eat it strictly by season. If it's not in season, you just don't eat it. When I first got here, all we ate were grapes and pears and peaches. It was a delicious way to start off my mission. And then the rest of the year went a little something like this:
September - grapes, pears, peaches
October - pears and APPLES. so many apples.
November - apples, apples, apples. and sometimes still some pears.
December - still apples, but now with tangerines! and persimmons. Fun fact that I didn't know about myself until I got here--I do not like persimmons.
January - tangerines
February - bananas? I don't know, there wasn't much because it was winter. We still ate apples sometimes though.
March - strawberries! and we ate oranges in here somewhere. This was my favorite time of year. I love oranges.
April - 잠외 (sp?). it's this Asian yellow melon and like most melons, i do not find it delicious. but still oranges!
May - these weird berries called 오디. I don't know it in English, but it sounds exactly like the word "where" and so when people would offer them to me I'd be like, "I'm from America." facepalm.
June - tomatoes (Koreans consider tomatoes a fruit and sometimes Korean grandmas would try and make me eat the cherry tomatoes like they were sweet and delicious. I promise I tried my best to always eat them, but sometimes I would just hide them down my shirt instead.) and tiny plums! I never knew, but I love plums!
July - watermelon, watermelon, watermelon. and still sometimes tomatoes ㅠㅠ
And now we're back to grapes and peaches. The pears are coming soon. I'm so excited. ^^
The Jehovah's Witnesses
I met them at last! I've been waiting my whole mission for them and finally this week, while Sister Matsen and I were doing companion study, two of them came knocking on our door. They were just two little old grandmas and they were so nice! They saw that we were Mormon missionaries, but they still gave us a pamphlet and tried their best to tell us in English about the kingdom of God. In my head I was kind of like, "But you can say it in Korean! Words about God and His kingdom are definitely one's I understand the best." But they tried their hardest to share their message in our language and I respected them for it. And then we all bowed goodbye and that was that. Though we probably should have given them one of our pamphlets too. Whoops.
A Question From My Mom
Thanks for sending questions Momma! I'll try to answer one every week. This week: what are some differences between the Church in America and the Church in Korea (but obviously not doctrine-wise)? Well, lemme tell you. For one thing, I think members in Korea are so much closer than in America because there are a lot fewer of them and usually the ward you're born into/baptized into is usually the ward you stay in for the rest of your life. And because these members have pretty much know each other since before they can remember, they're really, really close. And the missionaries are no exception. Even though missionaries are obviously temporary in the wards in which they serve, they're still very much members of the ward. Like last week, going on the ward camping trip wasn't a suggestion. It was a command. But I love it! It's like living in a Korean riceball of family and love. Also, everyafter church is over, we eat lunch together! That's one tradition I'd like to bring back with me to America.^^
A Miracle With Grace
I asked her, "Grace, do you even know what the Book of Mormon is about? Do you know anything about the story?"
"Um...is it about a guy named Mormon?"
"Well, maybe like ten pages of it, but in the grand scheme of things, no. No, not really."
And then we began telling her the story of the Book of Mormon. From the very beginning (she liked when we shared 1 Nephi 3:7 so much that she marked it!) all the way up until King Benjamin. So, not very far, but it was a good start. And since we had assigned her the week before to try and read Mosiah 2, but she had forgotten, we decided to read that out loud with her as well. It was so good! And by the end, she was beaming with the a greater understanding of the book we've encouraged her so much to read. One thing about Grace, like so many others that I've met on my mission, is that she loves the Bible. So much. And she should! The Bible is wonderful as it testifies of Jesus Christ and includes many accounts of His life and ministry on the earth. But one thing that makes me so sad is when people's love for the Bible stops them from ever even attempting to read the Book of Mormon because the Book of Mormon has the same purpose: to testify of Jesus Christ.
As it says in Mormon 7:8-9, "Therefore repent, and be baptized in the name of Jesus, and lay hold upon the gospel of Christ, which shall be set before you, not only in this record but also in the record which shall come unto the Gentiles from the Jews, which record shall come from the Gentiles unto you. For behold, this (the Book of Mormon) is written for the intent that ye may believe that (the Bible); and if ye believe that ye will believe this also; and if ye believe this ye will know concerning your fathers, and also the marvelous work which were wrought by the power of God among them."
Did I use enough italics and bold letters? So read it! Nothing in it takes away from the Bible. It only adds to its witness of our Lord Jesus Christ.