Monday, December 29, 2014

Happy Christmas!


Can you believe that Christmas has come and gone? This week has been absolutely insane, but so many memorable moments and miracles.

On Tuesday, was the big mission Christmas Conference. It was such a great MTC reunion, old companion reunion, and SISTER reunion! It all started off with a President Morrise talking about how our mission is a tapestry and how each individual missionary is like a piece of fabric in the tapestry. When one is missing, the tapestry is not as valuable as it could be. Then he played the ㅋㅋㅋ It was great because we got to see some pretty epic photos of missionary work. After that, we had the best lunch which included mash potatoes, turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and pie! Ah, it was almost like being in America but a little bit better. ㅋㅋㅋ I am kidding. After lunch, we heard an awesome song and then did this "transfer activity". Essentially, we recreated every transfer activity since the MTC to now. It was so much fun to see old companions and districts. The best part of the transfer activity was that I got to see my Korean sister again! When it was time for us to be companions, we just started jumping up and down. It was so great to see her again!! 
song by David Archuleta with all of our mission pictures attached to it.

The highlight of mission conference was testimony meeting. All of the returning missionaries shared their testimonies of the savior, their mission, and how they are going to apply what they learned to the rest of their lives. It was so great to see how much they have grown over their mission. I am a little bias and loved the testimonies of my trainer and greenie breaker. Essentially they went from not being able to bear any testimony of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon, to being able to say that they know it is true without any hesitation. We were all so sad to see them go, but we know that they did what they were supposed to do. Korea needs more people like them!

The rest of the week was spent trying to help spread the true meaning of Christmas to the people around us. We attempted this by doing some caroling, passing out cards with "He is the Gift" on it, and sharing the message that Christ lives and has restored his gospel on the earth. I'm not really sure what or if anything came from it, but there were definitely some smiles. People came up to us asking us what made us so happy, and all we could do was share our testimony. Truly that is the answer to their question. 

I am so happy to be a missionary, especially during this special season. I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!! 


Sis. Chao

Monday, December 22, 2014

Merry Christmas!!

Hello Family,

Before I forget, Merry Christmas Family!! I cannot believe that another year has come and gone, but I am happy to be spending another Christmas as a missionary. Oh, that sounded bad... I really do love you and I want to spend it with you, but there is definitely something different about being a missionary on Christmas. Sis. Gooch and I have been preparing for the upcoming holiday festivities by spreading as much Christmas cheer as possible.

Last Sunday, we tried doing Christmas Singing Proselyting with a probably would have been a success but the location was bad. So we are planning to do a more populated place next time we go. We are hoping to do it on Christmas Eve. 

This week, we have been working a lot with members and trying to meet with potential investigators. One of our potential investigators, Ali, has been coming out to English Class every week and chatting with us afterwards. We invited her to our ward Christmas party and she seemed super interested. The only catch is that she told us she might be drunk. Oh boy. So we are trying to figure out a way that we can get her to come to the party before she hangs out with her friends. We are praying that she decides to come the party. 

Another miracle that we saw is with another investigator. One evening this week, our appointment fell through so I decided to try and make an appointment with her. She also randomly had time that day so we met. She started talking about how if we wanted to be better missionaries, we have to show people that we genuinely do care for them. She talked about how missionaries need to help people break down this wall that they put up. It finally just clicked, do people we meet with know that we genuinely do care for them and consider them friends?  She then talked about how she knows that we genuinely love her, so she talks about us to her other friends. She even gave one of her friends the Liahona. She may be one of the best member missionaries who is not actually a member. 

As I thought about that this week, we met with another investigator Kate Park. The past few weeks, we have not been able to share much of a gospel message with her. Well, as I watched her gestures and face, I realized that she was super unhappy. So I just asked her. She then opened up her heart to us and told us that she was really lonely. Then she asked us why were so happy. That led us talking about our life decisions and how the gospel has really blessed us. We then talked about how we genuinely wanted her to be happy. We also told her that she could call us whenever she needed someone to talk about. She was quite surprised when we told her and told us that she would. 

After that, things just kept getting better. Ah, seriously being a missionary in Korea is something special. :) Other than that, we are just working to get the Christmas party prepped. The big Christmas conference is tomorrow and there is a rumor that there might be turkey. What? Also, we may or not be dancing at the ward Christmas party. Fail.

Love you! Merry Christmas!

-Sis. Chao

P.S. We are getting a few replacement missionaries (sisters). Elders are still coming in at a steady rate. They just merged a couple and found a few members to act as missionaries for a while. It has been interesting.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Countdown to Christmas



Can you believe that it is almost time for Christmas? I cannot, but I am excited because that means we are using our time effectively. I think that is what it means when time flies by. Anywho, Sis. Gooch and I have seen a lot of miracles this week. 

First, every Sunday...we go to a hot spot in our area called Shinsgae and we do street boarding with the elders. Lately, we haven't had a lot of success, but this past week two college age students came up and talked to us. These 2 college girls are attending our English class every week and have started asking us more about the gospel. We are hoping to pick them up as investigators later this week. 

Also, a cute couple has been asking us a lot more questions about the gospel. It seems like she is much more interested in it now than before. The other day, she asked us a lot about the Word of Wisdom and church services. We are hoping that she will want to come soon...if not, we will keep planting seeds. We are lucky if we get one or two appointment a week. It is because all of our appointments are at night (investigators). Most of the members work and are only free in the evening.

Another notable thing that happened this week is that Sis. Gooch and I went to the temple this past week and saw the newest temple video.  My only reaction to that is . I was definitely surprised. That is all I have to say. Sis. Gooch and I weren't really sure what to think of it, but the message was the same. 

Other than that, Sis. Gooch and I have been going on lots of exchanges with sisters in our zone. The sisters in Incheon are doing amazing things and I cannot wait to see all the good that they do. 

I also think I am getting slightly less intelligent everyday. The other day, I told Sister Gooch that I was from Norwegia....Fail. What is happening?

It is so cold!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Love you all,

Sis. Chao

Monday, December 8, 2014


Hello Family!

Well December has finally arrived and Korea is definitely showing it. When December 1st came around, the temperature dropped dramatically and the wind started picking up. Sis. Gooch has never really experienced a winter in Korea before, but she is being a trooper. I am not really sure, but I think that this year might actually be colder than last year. That or I have finally embraced Korean temperatures. It was so cold that I busted out the fleece tights early this year. ㅋㅋㅋ It has been like freezing standing out by bus stops. On a bright note, it has been quite a conversation starter among Koreans. Win.

This week, Sis. Gooch and I have been going to a lot of meetings. It was Missionary Leadership Council up in 송파. It was about helping our investigator, as well as missionaries have a more uplifting experience during sacrament meeting. The ZL's and I weren't really sure how to approach this training because it was a bit hard to follow, but we decided to make our training more of a round table discussion. At first, no one really wanted to admit that they were having a problem focusing at sacrament, so the ZL's and I broke the ice. We talked about how sometimes it is really hard to focus because we don't understand everything. Then we started talking about ways that we have found helpful in overcoming that barrier. We were really trying to emphasize that we aren't perfect and we all still struggle, but we should try our best to be fluent in church settings before any other settings.  

After that, Sis. Gooch and I went on exchanges. I was with Sis. Pratt and it was a great learning experience. Sis. Pratt and I met first at the MTC, but we didn't really talk. Now we are the best of friends! We talked about how we want to overcome this Korean Missionary Culture. We decided that we need to try our best to break the mold and try to see as many miracles as missionaries in the past have. 

Other than that, nothing else really is new. This week, we get to go to the temple!! Yay!!

-Sis. Chao

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Thanksgiving with the District

Hello Family!

This week has been incredible and I absolutely love the area that I am serving in. This week, Sis. Gooch came down with a really bad cold, so we made an executive decision for her to rest and get better. While she rested, I got in a lot of study and contacted a lot of potential investigators, previous investigators, current investigators, and less active members. It was good, but it easy for someone to get stir crazy when there isn't much room to move around. Sis. Gooch and I are loving being together and we definitely treat each other like siblings. The best part is that it makes missionary work even more fun and creates an even greater desire to work even harder.

As we were weekly planning this week, we decided that we need to be more creative with the ways we invite people. We talked about hosting a music night/fireside for members to invite friends. Channeling some of our talents to have activities that really make people feel comfortable inviting non-members to. It is all in the drafting phase, but we really want to start getting things started because there are only a few weeks left in the transfer.

This Thanksgiving was definitely not ones like we have, but it was just as good. It definitely felt like we were spending Thanksgiving with our family. It was not a p-day, but we plan on watching a movie together next P-day. For Thanksgiving, we went and got 삼겹살, which is pork belly meat? Anyways, it is much more delicious than the description. We ate so much and just shared what things we were thankful for. After dinner, we went to an investigator’s house and sang Christmas songs and talked about why religion is so important to us. It was a bit of a miracle because although small,  she is finally progressing towards something. Our conversations have morphed in light conversations to real deep ones. It is amazing. Definitely the Lord's timing. 

Another eventful thing that happened this week is that my district and I got to make Kimchi!! It was so much fun, but the Kimchi squat really destroys the legs. ㅋㅋㅋ Who would have thought that the process of making Kimchi is so scientific. Seriously, it is absolutely crazy how much time goes into making it. That being said...I am definitely going to try and recreate this later. Maybe not right now because our fridge is exploding with Kimchi, but in the near future. 

I love you!

-Sis. Chao