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Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Week 59 - Let Go of Your Hate

Title - In "Return of the Jedi", while on the planet Endor, Luke Skywalker (not Huckvale) turns himself in to the Empire and confronts Darth Vader (Luke's father).  Luke believes that there's still good in Darth Vader.  Luke is trying to convince Vader of this by telling him to "let go of his hate".

Pics - The massive banana bread cookie; they got a new flavor of Mt. Dew!  

Date: Mon, 14 Mar 2016 13:37:36 +0900

Hello my adoring fans!
This week felt so long yet it went by super fast!  Elder Shepherd and I are still struggling to find new investigators, but we're going to try some new methods of finding this week so hopefully we'll be able to get some return appointments and get the work moving! 
This week, especially with the Easter season approaching, we are really trying to get the members excited and involved in helping to share the message of the Resurrection of the Savior with their friends and family and invite them to the mission's Easter music night. 
On Monday we had dinner with the Stake President, 송병철 (Byung Chur Song) and his wife and afterwards we helped them to choose someone they could invite to the music night and then roleplayed inviting that person with them.  It was something that we learned about from a different set of missionaries and it worked out really well.  The stake president told us that what we were asking them to do was really easy.  Classic stake president being an incredible missionary.
On Tuesday, since Easter is this month, all of the district leaders in the mission went and participated in the Missionary Leadership Council with all of the zone leaders.  It was so awesome!  The greatest part of the meeting was when the Assistants to the President gave a training on the importance of love as being a leader.  Apparently our mission is really low on quality leadership these days so it was something that President Sonksen really wanted to talk with us about.  He also talked about developing a sarcasm-free mission (this may be difficult for me).  Especially when I was a younger missionary, I think that when I thought of a leader I just thought of someone who inspired other missionaries and just worked really hard and raked in a ton of stats at the end of the week.  I realized at the meeting, though, that love is what makes a leader.
On Wednesday we had our zone meeting which was pretty good.  There wasn't much training, we just talked a lot about Easter and what ideas we have that we could use to share the message of the Easter season. 
On Thursday we went out and visited a bunch of people from our ward and also did our service project.  For a service project, we go to the community center and get food and deliver it to people in the neighborhood who are tight on cash.  We usually stay a little bit longer and share a message with one of the people we deliver food to named 이동희 (Donghee Ee).  Last week and this week we decided to bring 김상하 (Songha Kim) with us when we went to visit him.  Since we've been bring Songha Kim, we've been able to have much better conversations with Donghee Ee and have been able to help him see how the Gospel can really change someone into something better.  On Thursday night we also went out and visited a member family in our ward and shared the same message with them about inviting their friends to the Easter music night.  We brought them cookies as well which they really enjoyed!
On Saturday and Sunday we had stake conference which was pretty good.  Songha Kim came to both sessions and really seemed to enjoy it.  President and Sister Sonksen both gave talks in Korean!  It was really impressive!
That's pretty much it for last week.  We also did a lot of baking. I tried to make some nutella-banana cookies but it just turned into banana bread.  It tastes good though!  This week we've got a few appointments lined up and we're going to throw together a mini MTC for the ward Family Home Evening on Saturday night. 

All in all things are going great!  I'm so excited to be out here in 장위 (Jangwee) serving the Lord and His children!  Especially during this Easter season I am so grateful for the Atonement of the Savior and His Resurrection from the dead.  Because of Him there is no reason to ever be sad or depressed.  In the end all things will be overcome through Christ.  Hallelujah to His name! 
"There is a resurrection, therefore the grave hath no victory, and the sting of death is swallowed up in Christ" -Mosiah 16: 8
Love and Miss Y'all!
Called to Serve!
Elder Huckvale

There's a new flavor of Mt. Dew in Korea... and these two are excited!!!

Week 58 - A District Leader, Huh?

Title - Derrick is not sure what this title means... so just make something good up for yourself.  :)

Date: Mon, 7 Mar 2016 12:52:45 +0900

Hello My Adoring Fans!
This week has been pretty interesting.  It feels like it's been really long.
Since Elder Crisp was getting transferred this week, we went and had three member meal appointments on Monday.  I think that I already talked about the first one with the bishop.  After that, for dinner, we ate with Brother 박병훈 (Byunghoon Bak) and his mom who isn't a member, 배혜자 (Hye jaw Bay).  Afterwards, we went to a house in the neighboring ward to perfrom our district's mini music night and we ended up eating again.  Three in one day!  That's a record that I don't want to break. 

On Tuesday we had another meal appointment with a member named 남규빈 (Gyu Bene Nam). 
On Wednesday Elder Crisp and I gathered all of his stuff and headed to the church to wait for my new companion, Elder Shepherd who would be arriving by taxi.  Elder Shepherd came and Elder Crisp took his taxi and headed off to the bus station to go to his new area.  I was kind of sad to see Elder Crisp go because I'd served in the same area as him for 3 transfers, but I'm really excited to work with Elder Shepherd.  I think that there's a lot that I can learn from him. 

 See ya, Elder Crisp!

Elder Shepherd is from Georgia, and he is starting his 5th transfer.  He came to Jangwee after serving in the foreign branch near the U.S. base in 동두천 (Dongdoochun).  Elder Shepherd is incredibly nice and super positive.  He's struggled a lot, especially with learning Korean, but he remains positive and continues to work as hard as he can to learn the language. 
On Saturday we had a really busy day.  Apparently Elder Shepherd's family is housing a foreign exchange student from Korea and his parents really want to give back to Elder Shepherd for all of the help that his family has been giving to their son.  Anyways, we met them at the church building and they brought a ton of foreign food like bagels, Nutella, peanut butter, and Oreos.  After that they took us out to the meat buffet which was really awesome.  They really appreciate all that Elder Shepherd's family has done for their son. 
After we ate lunch with them, we ran over to the Church to do the final new member lesson with 김상하 (Songha Kim).  The lesson went great.  It is so awesome to see how much he's progressed since he first found the church only a few months ago.  He got his temple recommend on Sunday and is going to go to do baptisms for the dead with the youth in a few weeks.  He's also been really great to have at lessons.  He has such an awesome testimony of the Gospel and he understands his weaknesses and insufficiencies very well. 
After we met with Songha Kim, we were planning on teaching English to the woman we met last Saturday but she didn't show up so we decided to go visit another recent convert in our ward named 이상호 (Songho Ee).  It was raining pretty heavily so we were really hoping to catch his dad when he wasn't working (his dad owns a carwash shop so he can't work when it's raining).  We went to Songho's house, and his dad was there, but he left right after we came in.  Really the only thing that we can do to help Songho at this point to is to help the dad so we we're really trying to teach him the Gospel.  We're going to try calling him more often (which is something that I struggle with) and try and build more trust with him.  As we do so, we're hoping that it will open his heart to the message of the Restoration of the Gospel.
On Saturday night we had our bi-weekly ward Family Home Evening which was so incredibly awesome.  Elder Shepherd and I taught the message which was about repentance.  We used a backpack and had one of the kids wear it.  The people in the audience would draw papers out of a bag and they would have bad or good actions on them.  When a bad action was drawn, we would put a hymn book in the backpack.  By the end, there were like 15 hymnbooks in the backpack. We illustrated that through the Atonement and as we repent, Jesus Christ will lift the burdens that we our carrying off our shoulders and we can become free.  It was a really cool object lesson.  After the message we played a Korean game where someone wears a blindfold and tries to find people that are standing still.  When he finds them, they make a pig sound and he has to guess who they are.  It was really fun except when I did it they changed the rule so that the other people could move.  Apparently it looked really ridiculous.  Gosh dang it.
Wow this week has felt really long.  It's been great though and I'm really excited to be starting another transfer in Jangwee.  We've got a lot of really awesome potential investigators and so we're hoping to see a lot of miracles this transfer.  I know that Jesus Christ lives and that it is through his Atonement that we can become free from all of the bad things in this life.  It is because of His selfless, long-suffering, perfect love for us, that we can become free from everything through Him,  even the bands of death.
Love and Miss Y'all!
Called to Serve!
Elder Huckvale

The Bishop playing the ping pong game, with Elder Shepherd on the floor.

Week 57 - 김상하 (Songha Kim) Felt a Distrurbance

Title - In "Star Wars", when Princess Leia's home planet of Alderan is blown up by the Death Star, Obi-Wan Kenobi says, "I felt a disturbance in the Force".

Pics - The Music Night in 장위; Elder Brantley, our beloved district leader (soon to be zone leader); Elder Crisp, the Bishop and Elder Huckvale

Date: Mon, 29 Feb 2016 15:20:14 +0900
Hello My Adoring Fans!
Well this week was a little bit crazy.  Not much on the lines of proselyting occurred, but we able to pick up a new investigator.  This week was filled with many struggily scenarios as well as really cool experiences. 
On Tuesday we performed a mini music performance in our neigboring area at one of the member's homes as a district which was a really cool experience.  This music thing is something that we had been planning on doing for a few weeks now, but we were now just able to perform it and it went really well.  The theme for the performance was "the Plan of Salvation".  The members and investigators that attended really seemed to enjoy it.  After the performance I started an exchange with Elder Cable from the neigboring area.  We had a lesson with our recent convert, 김상하 (Songha Kim) which went pretty well.  He's doing great! 

The Music Night in 장위
After we ate dinner at the home, we headed back and I went to the dry cleaningers to pick up a suit that I had left there.  The next morning I went to put on my suit and found that the pants had disappeared!  Elder Cable and I walked all the way back to where the dry cleaners is trying to track down my pants, but they were no where to be found.  Aw jeez.  There's like these old people who go around picking up stuff (particularly cardboard) to turn in for a profit, and I'm pretty sure one of them snatched my pants up off the street.  Dang it.  I still don't know what I'm going to do about this one honestly.
On Wednesday the sisters in our neighboring area called and said that their Chinese investigators wanted to go visit the temple with them and they could only go on Wednesday or Sunday and President Sonksen said that he couldn't give them permission to skip Church, but he could give them permission to move District meeting.  As a result, our district meeting on Wednesday was delayed to Friday morning during studies which was kind of struggily.  It worked out alright though.
On Thursday we went out and did a ton of visits of less-actives in our ward as well as recent coverts and potential investigators.  We brought a member along with us to go with us on some of our visits including when we visited one of the recent coverts in the ward that Elder Crisp baptized named 이상호 (Songho Ee).  We were really hoping that we would be able to talk with the dad and hopefully share the Gospel with him, but he was too busy when we got there to meet which was kind of struggily.  Songho Ee has schyzophrenia and he takes some pretty heavy medications so it's incredibly difficult to teach him a lesson sometimes.  Thursday night was one of those times.  Afterwards we went with the same member to visit a less-active family in our ward and we ended up eating dinner at their house which was pretty good.  The wife, 황진분 (Jeenboon Hwang), really quickly whipped some of this really delicious chicken soup stuff and we talked with them a little bit.  The member who was with us did most of the talking.  After we finished eating, we shared the First Vision with them.  At the end we committed them to allow our district to perform our musical thing with them and they agreed.
Last week we were really struggling to find families in the ward that we could do the musical performance with and I called a part-member family in the ward that Elder Crisp and I have been working with.  The name of the member is 신주연 (Juyun Sheen) and she agreed to have the mini concert in her house on Saturday night and so I went and told our district leader, Elder Brantley, and he informed all of the other missionaries in our district.
On Saturday morning I got a call from Juyun Sheen and she told me that we weren't going to be able to do the concert at her house that night.  I was a little frustrated, but I maintained a smile and I told her it was going to be okay.  I also reminded her that with transfers coming up, many of the missionaries in the district could be transferring so I wasn't sure if we would be able to do it after this weekend.  She told me that it still wasn't going to work out.  After I hung up I was pretty frustrated.  I called Elder Brantley and told him the news and he proceeded to tell the other missionaries.  Aw jeez. 
Then there was a miracle.
On Saturday we met and continued to teach Songha Kim the new member lessons and the lesson went really well.  We thought that he was going to punk us after he didn't show up for half-an-hour, but he came it was all good.  Afterwards there was a really cool miracle that happened.  We went down and apparently an elderly woman named Anna Kim who lives near the church came to learn English.  She used to attend our English class, but started going to the neighboring ward's class when our ward temporarily stopped doing English class last year.  So we were like "We'll teach you English" and we quickly grabbed Songha Kim and brought him with us.  It was so awesome.  We taught her English for half an hour and then taught her about the Gospel.  It turned out to be a really great lesson and Songha Kim was able to share his really awesome testimony of the Gospel with Anna Kim.  We invited her to be baptized and she was really caught by surprise, so then we had to further explain to her that she didn't need to say yes right now, but as we met with her, she could be prepared to be baptized.  It turned out to be a really spiritual lesson and a really cool miracle that we saw.  It was especially cool because Songha Kim came late to the appointment.  He is a super spiritual guy so Elder Crisp suggested that he may have felt a disturbance or maybe he just really thought that we were meeting at 1:30 instead of 1.  Nevertheless, it twas a miracle.
On Saturday night we got our transfer calls.  Elder Crisp is getting transferred all the way out to the boonies to a place called 태백 (Taybek) and I'm staying in Jangwee and becoming the district leader.  My new companion will be Elder Shepherd. 
On Sunday there was another miracle.  On Thursday when we went to Songho Ee's house, his dad (who runs a carwash/repair shop) told us that if it rains we can visit him.  On Sunday it snowed.  After we went out to visit Juyun Sheen, we called Songho Ee's dad and he said that we could come and visit.  We quickly called up a member (who we just happened to have a dinner appointment with that night named 배성훈 (Sunghoon Bay)) and he came and picked us up on the side of the road and took us to Songho's dad's repair shop.  The lesson could have gone much better than it did.  Sunghoon Bay and Songho's dad ended up talking most of the time about Songho and how he's been struggling a bit at Church and we weren't really able to teach much about the Gospel.  I shared a verse from the Book of Mormon and bore my testimony of the Savior and His power to lift our burdens through the Atonement.  We ended up giving him a Book of Mormon, but then we had our dinner appointment to go to so Sunghoon Bay offered to take Songho with us and so we did.  We ate dinner with Sunghoon Bay and his family and Songho and then Sunghoon Bay took us to our ward mission leader's house to do our mini music night.  The mini music night was a huge success.  We were able to have three families from the ward come and they seemed to really enjoy it.  It was a little bit tight though with the three families and the ten missionaries in our district.
Today we went and ate dinner with the bishop at a Korean food buffet.  It was very delicious.  Now we've just got to make room for the next dinner appointment we have tonight for dinner with different member.  식사!  Alright!

Anyways, this week had some very struggily moments, but there were also some very awesome moments.  So is the way as a missionary.
I am really excited for this transfer and to be able to continue to serve in the Jangwee ward with such awesome members.  This is the true Church of Jesus Christ restored to the earth and this is His work.  He lives and He is at the head of it.
Love and Miss Y'all!
Called to Serve!
Elder Huckvale

Elder Brantley, our beloved district leader (soon to be zone leader)