Monday, July 25, 2016

Week 45: Staying in the area, New responsibilities

Well this week was a very quick week and actually, my companion and I weren't really able to be in our area this week at all because we had to go to his mandatory military training. At least, we were able to be in our area for a good 3 days, and those days were super busy, and it was amazing!! I love this area so much and there are so many miracles that we are able to see and it is fantastic! It is getting warmer and warmer here, and lately it has been sooooo hot. Like... 35°C (95°F°) hot!  Though, it is great and I love being out in the sun and being able to talk to so many people. It really was a great week. We actually had to sleep in a different house because our house was too far away from my companion’s military training facility.  So, we had a 6 man house with other missionaries!! Fantastic!!

So this week, I've learned a few things here and there and one thing that I want to focus on today is actually on the gospel of Jesus Christ. As missionaries we talk about the gospel of Jesus Christ a lot but what is the gospel of Jesus Christ and what even is its meaning?
The gospel simply stated is "Heavenly Father’s plan to help us have peace in this life and joy in eternity. The gospel is centered on the Atonement of Jesus Christ and requires us to have faith in Him, repent, be baptized, receive the Holy Ghost, and endure to the end."
So while I was pondering this week about the gospel of Jesus Christ, I came across a scripture in Moroni, and it reads "And the first fruits of repentance is baptism; and baptism cometh by faith unto the fulfilling the commandments; and the fulfilling the commandments bringeth remission of sins;" (Moroni 8:25) The only way we really can attain this peace in life and joy for eternity is through the gospel of Jesus Christ. As we have faith, we come unto him and try to become more like him, and we repent and follow his example by being baptized, where through priesthood authority, we are able to receive the Holy Ghost. As we have the Holy Ghost with us we are prompted to do right, but can choose for ourselves. Therefore, as we endure to the end, by making those right decisions we find this! Isn't that wonderful, we can come unto Christ and be like him and really anything is able to happen!

So easily explaining this week, on Monday we went and shopped, then ate and went bowling!! Bowling was super fun. Then we were able to go to a bookstore so that I could buy some new Korean books to supplement my study! It was like Christmas!! Then we came back to the church and had family home evening.  At family home evening, we played scum and everyone seemed to have a great time playing it!!

On Tuesday, we woke up super early in the morning and went to Suseong so that Elder Lee could go receive military training. So that meant that I would go with the Suseong team and be a 3-men companionship while Elder Lee would go to military. So we did that.   We were able to go talk to a whole bunch of people on the street, and at around 5 o'clock we met Elder Lee and had dinner, and were able to go outside and talk to a few people in Suseong! After that we came home and had a great time with 6 guys in the house.

On Wednesday, we woke up and took Elder Lee to Military training and then came back, studied and had district meeting. So we went and opened the church. However, it turned out that we weren't supposed to have district meeting there, so we went to the senior couples’ house for the meeting. We then had lunch there. We took some photos and then went to pick up  Elder Lee again. Elder Lee and I came back as fast as we could to Gyeongsan, and did English class and taught a couple of people that are looking into the church!
As soon as we finished teaching the people, we had to rush back to Suseong so that we could sleep in that 6-men house.

On Thursday, we went to drop Elder Lee off again, and the rest of us studied, went to a meal with a member, and then came back to meet one of Suseong's investigators and were able to teach a lesson -- that was great! Then we went and picked up Elder Lee, came back to the Suseong house, got changed and came back to Gyeongsan, where we went to meet a friend who doesn't come out to church a lot -- but he is awesome! He owns a kick boxing gym and it was good being able to talk to him and get to know him!

On Friday, we had another district meeting and it was really good.  We again took some pictures, had an area meeting, and then went to go help one missionary who left his bag in the taxi, go get his bag at a police station. Unfortunately it wasn't at our police station, but it was at another police station!! So we went the police station, and then went to talk to people, had to hurry to get to a member’s house to have meal, and came back to church and did Japanese class and that was the day!

On Saturday, we studied in the morning, met our college student and had a great time together, went shopping and while we were shopping, I was going to print some photos off….
Unfortunately the computer at the photo place deleted ALL of my photos.... Oh well... Camera Problems... So anyway….
then we went to the church and prepared for English class and our activity that we would do, and that was good. Then after that, we had a lesson with another investigator.  Then, we were going to have a cook off for a ward activity, so, we went shopping. The other team made a Korean dish and..
My team made... a Japanese dish called Shogayaki (Ginger pork) and... We won!!  It was good, and we had a fun time! 
After the activity, we went home and waited for our transfer calls. My companion got sent to Busan, and I stay here
and have received a new assignment as District Leader. So that will be fun!

On Sunday, we went to church, were able to eat, taught lessons, and helped some members with stuff they needed to do, had a meeting and dinner with some members, and that was really our week! It was a great week and I love it here and I guess a new adventure awaits me now!!

I love you all and I hope everything is well and I miss you so much! :)

Love Always,

Elder Joshua Wilson

Our investigator

College investigator

New Companion

Monday, July 18, 2016

Week 44: Baptismal Service and Come unto Christ

I feel like I just don't know any English words anymore.. All I can really say is that being in Gyeongsan is wonderful and absolutely superb. It is amazing to be here and to be able to serve here in this little branch of about 30 people and help others come closer unto Christ!! I love it here so much. Sunday is the last day of the transfer, so there is a possibility that my companion and I split and I get a new companion, but I'm hoping that we get to stay together. However, whatever happens is all part of God's plan and I can always trust him. Gyeongsan is very lovely though it is so hot!! Every moment I get to be here, is such a blessing and I am so glad that I can be here serving in Gyeongsan.

So this week I was thinking really deeply about what has occurred over the past week. All the miracles, blessings, people I have been able to meet and so on. Yet one thing that I particularly want to concentrate on today is an aspect that we all seem to forget every once in a while, and then have a sudden realization of its importance. So to start off, I will actually talk about an experience that we had on Tuesday, where my companion and I were walking, we saw a mother and daughter speaking English. I said hello and asked them where they were going. The mom was from Venezuela, so I actually got a really good chance to speak Spanish for a pretty decent time and about the restored gospel.  They would even like to learn about it actually.  As we were wrapping up talking with them, there was another foreigner on the other side of
the street yelling at us.  Unfortunately we couldn't understand what she was saying at first, so we stopped and let the mother and the daughter go.  Then the woman came running across the street, almost getting hit by a car and said "Elders,
Elders... I finally found you!!" This woman is from Zimbabwe and has been studying in Korea for as long as I have been out on my mission. For past 10 months or so, she was unable to find our church, in this foreign country, where she doesn't know how to really speak the language or even understand it. So she told us her story, and we exchange our phone numbers when she was about to go off and we told her that we would call her. We called her that night and set up a way that she could attend church. Though, she would be attending the English Branch and she didn’t know how to navigate herself around.   Fortunately we had a meeting going over to that building so that we got there and were able to accompany her over there and switch off with a married couple to help
her find he way home. Her face..was SO... happy when she saw the church!!  So she knows how to attend the church here in Daegu, but she was going up to Seoul for this last weekend, so we collaborated with some missionaries up there.  For the first time in 10 months, she could go to church. So the reason why I am actually talking about this is because, we often forget the meaning of why we go to church. But in particular, for 10 months, she was unable to partake of the sacrament
and renew her baptismal covenants and with her being able to go to church, she was immensely happy -- I cannot begin to describe how happy I was and how much she was too. It was wonderful, truly wonderful!!
Jesus Christ bore up all our sins that we may be clean and live with our Father in Heaven again, and this is why we partake of the sacrament. To have all our sins washed away as we did when we were baptized. So I wanted to share that and really… The worth of every soul is great in the eyes of God.

So this week has been a fantastic one, and it all started Monday as we cleaned our house, emailed for a little bit, went out to eat with the sisters, did shopping and everything else we needed to do and then we finished it off with our family home evening!

Then on Tuesday, we had our area meeting with the sisters and went outside and talked to people for just about the entire day --- that was great. On that day, we were able to meet our sister from Zimbabwe -- that was fantastic as well! It was a great miracle.   We were also able to meet with a guy that has become one of our new investigators!! Also we went out that night to eat dinner with some members, and that was phenomenal as well!

On Wednesday, we went outside and tried to talk to many people, but not many people wanted to talk to us because it was raining --- but that was okay. So anyway, we kept talking to others and trying.  Then we found someone actually wanted to talk to us, and that was great! Then we had English class. Many people showed up early that we were able to talk
with them first, and had English class.  It turned out very well. After English class, we were able to talk to a guy who
had come to the class for the first time.  While my companion talked to one investigator, I talked to this new man.  He had interest in the church, so we started talking and he said that he would pray and that he really wants to know if these things are true so he will read the Book of Mormon.

Thursday we had to get up early so we could take our sister from Zimbabwe to the church in another area.   We did that because first, she didn't know how to get there, and second, she didn't feel very comfortable taking the subway since she doesn't have any in her country.  We took the subway and
that was fine, and met with a married couple missionary team. They had her tour the church and she took the bus home as we had a zone missionary meeting. So that was good and we had a great time. Then we came back and were able to talk with our college student about baptism and the gospel of Jesus Christ. He wanted to see a baptism, so we invited to one on Sunday! Then we all went out to eat dinner and everything was great!

On Friday, we planned for a bit and went outside, where I got to play basketball with a kid.   He was super interested in missionaries and the gospel!! It was great to be able to play basketball and get to spread the gospel! Then we went to the church for Japanese class and were able to talk about the gospel a little bit with others who attended the class. I taught Japanese class and it was very amusing and fantastic!

On Saturday, we went outsid, talked to some people and then had English class. The one guy who wants to learn English came to the class, and we were able to talk to him afterwards. His name is 강명수 and he is fantastic. When we asked him about prayer and the Book of Mormon, he was like “I know it is all true” and he told us that he wants to get baptized, so we are
planning for that!! After that, we were able to meet with another investigator and talk to him.  Then, we went out to eat with some members and it was a wonderful --- I love serving here!

On Sunday, we had church and one of the investigators ended up coming.  He attended the church and really liked it.  Wewere able to teach him and discuss with him our Heavenly Father's great plan for us. After church, we had some meetings.  We went to the baptismal service with the investigator who came to church and our college student investigator.  After that, we asked them if they would like to receive their own baptism.  They were like “yes!”  So, we were super happy!!
Then we went and ate dinner at the senior couple missionaries' house.  We were all thankful and that was our day!

I love it here and I am so happy that I can be with such wonderful people!

Love Always,

Elder Joshua Wilson
Investigators who went to the Baptismal Service... They want to get Baptized!!!!:)))))

with Elder Sorenson


Monday, July 11, 2016

Week 43: Friendship night and performing

This week we were able to see so many miracles, and it was a lovely week for sure. It rained a little bit here and there.  We had to drop an investigator, and a lot of other things, but everything turned out pretty well for the most part!! Also we got to have interviews with President Barrow, which was amazing, and got to play some basketball with some kids, who is now an investigator.  It was just hot... And humid... But lovely... yet, still it mostly hot and humid!! Oh, by the way, I apologize for not sending pictures last week. I ran out of time... Anyway, I love being here!! Last Saturday we had our friendship night, which is kind of like a talent show, so many people did a bunch of stuff, and it was amazing. Everyone went nuts after I played a good song on the piano. It was a great week and people are progressing well!! I love being here and am able to see so many miracles! The Lord's hand is in all things and I know that to be so true!

So this week the message I want to share is actually from the Book of Mormon. So I know the Book of Mormon to be the word of God for a fact, and I have found that out through reading and praying about it to receive an answer. Today, I want to bear testimony that I really do know that the Book of Mormon is also another testament of Jesus Christ, and that it talks about Christ and his gospel,  and why he is central to our message and why we need him. The Book of Mormon is not just a book, but is something that can change our lives for the better and will have last effects on us forever. So the part I want to share from the book comes from 2 Nephi 2:26. It reads "And the Messiah cometh in the fullness of time, that he may redeem the children of men from the fall.

And because that they are redeemed from the fall they have become free forever, knowing good from evil; to act for themselves and not to be acted upon, save it be by the punishment of the law at the great and last day, according to the commandments which God hath given." He loves us, and because of him we can really live with our families again. The additional knowledge contained in the Book of Mormon is
amazing and really does help everyone come closer to Christ!

This week went by super fast and I can't believe how time flies!! So last Monday for P-day we decided to go to Costco for the 4th of July!! So we went and did shopping, because for our family home evening dinner, we were going to cook up burgers, so we did that and ate lunch.  Then we came back to our area and sent off emails. We bought so much meat at Costco because it is so expensive here in Korea, and it is so good! Then we came back and did family home evening where we ate and played Charades! It is super amazing I loved it and the burgers were fantastic!

On Tuesday, we studied in the morning and then went outside to talk to other people and then we went and saw our investigator 김성길. He is awesome old man, but he sat us down and said that he didn't want to learn about the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.  He hadn't been keeping our commitments so he didn't want to meet with us anymore. We tried to keep talking to him. At least, he said that he wants to learn only English from the New Testament, but that is it.  He is still an amazing man, and one day, I know that he will want to learn more and to hear the restored gospel! 

Then we headed to go see a less active member, but she was getting a perm so we had to go into a hair salon and talked to her.  It was great, and she was very happy to see us!! Then we
came to the church and had a meeting with the sisters and practiced a song that we were going to sing.  Then we met our college student over dinner, and that was super great!  We taught him a lesson, and he likes the church, and is just figuring out so many great things!!

On Wednesday, we studied in the morning, went to the church

and sang for a little bit, and met with another college student for the first time.  The meeting with the college student turned out super well and we will be meeting with him more.   After that, we went outside and talked to some people, returned to the church and started teaching about the Book of Mormon
to a member.   When we were teaching the member, an investigator called and came to the church.   So, we taught the investigator a lesson too.  He was very happy and accepted it well and wants to learn more! 
Then we had our English Class and that turned out very well as well..

On Thursday, as usual, we studied in the morning, did our service project and went over to Sangin where we had interviews with President Barrow. After we finished the interviews, we went outside to talk to people. There was a guy playing basketball, so we started talking to him.  We played and taught him a lesson.  He showed some interest, and wants to learn more about the Book of Mormon and find out for himself that it is true... So we did that.  Oh, and basketball was fun.   Then, we came back to our are to finish off the day and talk to other people.

On Friday, we studied in the morning, went and had lunch with a member, went outside and talked to many people, sang and then kept talking to more people, and went to the church for Japanese class where more people ended up coming -- it was about 6 people this time and it turned out super well.

On Saturday, we studied in the morning, went to the church to set up for our friendship night, had some singing practice and then went outside and talked to some people.  By the time we knew, we had to go back to the church and do our friendship night. So, I guess a very easy explanation of that activity is that

it is a talent show.  It was super good and we had games, and I will send pictures of it later!! Also I played a really good piece on the piano and that was great! Then we ate dinner and taught 2 lessons to people that came and we split up with members to teach!!

Then finally, on Sunday we had church and it was great!! Then we went outside and talked to people and then we finished the day with planning. It was an amazing week for sure!!

I loved this week as I do all weeks and I love being here in Korea!! I love you all and I hope you have a great week!

Love Always,

Elder Wilson

I got the cookie in my mouth!!

Friendship Night
Shopping at Costco

Email Time


Eating Steak!!!  


Monday, July 4, 2016

Week 42: The rain came down...

So first off... HELLO!!! I'm doing amazing over here in Korea, and I love being here in Gyeongsan!! It is absolutely lovely over here, and there are so many great people here!! I also love the fact that I am able to serve the Lord everyday from the instant I wake up, to the very moment that I fall asleep! It is wonderful being a missionary and being able to share this gospel with everyone around me. The thing, which is so much more marvelous though, is that fact that we are able to meet with people and share the gospel, AND for them to accept it because they too know that their Heavenly Father loves them and they want to follow Jesus Christs example as well.

Because it is the 4th of July, I want to share something that is a part of America’s history and about my ancestors, but in particular, I want to focus on the word, "Pioneer.”   In an article written by our living prophet, President Thomas S. Monson it reads, “To be a Latter-day Saint is to be a pioneer, for the definition of a pioneer is “one who goes before to prepare or open up the way for others to follow.” And to be a pioneer is to become acquainted with sacrifice. Although members of the Church are no longer asked to leave their homes to make the journey to Zion, they often must leave behind old habits, longtime customs, and cherished friends. Some make the agonizing decision to leave behind family members who oppose their Church membership. Latter-day Saints move forward, however, praying that precious ones will yet understand and accept." 

As we journey through our lives, we open a way for others to follow us and that is exactly what Jesus Christ did. He showed us the way and will lead and guide us. He loves us and as it says, although we don't need to walk many miles like my ancestors did to find religious freedom, we create our own sanctuary and create a place where the Holy Ghost may reside so that we may always feel our Savior's love. So as we try to be pioneers and establish a way through our example, we will come to know our Savior as little bit more than we did before.

So on to my week!! ---This week was full of marvelous things!!  So on Monday, we had a zone P-day where we all met up and had breakfast and played ping pong and games and it was very fun! Then my companion and I came back to our area, emailed, shopped and then we had our family home evening! At family home evening we ate something called Ddokbokki and played games and watched a church movie and it was a great time.  Everyone said they all had fun!

Then on Tuesday, we studied in the morning, and then went to go exchange with some Elders from a place called Sangin (상인).  We switched companions, and I came back to Gyeongsan and had a good day talking with people on the street because no one was able to meet during the day.  So, my companion and I walked for 9 hours straight.  It was a very sunny and gorgeous day to walk around and talk to other people.

On Wednesday, we went over to Sangin and had our district meeting, and came back and met our investigator김성길.  He is a very cute grandpa and very fun. I love visiting him and he really seems to like us and like learning about the gospel! 

Before we started English class, we ate dinner with the sisters and met with a member who wanted to study the Book of Mormon together.   English Class is always fantastic and I really do love being able to teach all the people who come and attend!

Then on Thursday, we studied in the morning andwent to our service project.  During the service project, I scrubbed dishes without knowing my gloves had holes in them.  Because I was scrubbing in super hot water, and it felt a little hotter than usual, but I didn't mind.   When we got done and looked at my hand, I realized that the gloves had a whole bunch of holes in them!  After the service project, we went to a place called수성 (SuSeong) and got to do an activity where you go with other companions and teach the gospel. So we did that and that was great!  Then we came back to our area and talked to people…. and we ended our day!

On Friday, we planned. It has started the rainy season. Actually in Korea they have a vocabulary word just for this time of year -- it reads"장마" which literally means rainy season (Jangma).  So, our investigators cancelled our appointments.   So, we went outside and talked to people, and that was good.   Then, we started my Japanese Class. It went super well and we had a super great turn out even with the rain coming!!

On Saturday, I got to go with other missionaries to their area because my companion had to go to a military training.  I went and ate with them, and talked to people on the street, and attended a wedding reception.   After that, I got my companion back, and we returned to our area and went to a member’s house to eat dinner. Then we came back and set up the church and then for the very last few moments of the day, we went outside and talked to other people. And it rained...

On Sunday, we went to church and it looked fine until.... It started raining after church and.... then started raining even harder, and harder when we were outside...  So, we got drenched, but we went and knocked on people's doors.  Then we went back outside and talked to people on streets.  We got to meet some good people that we will be meeting this week!

It is great being here, and no matter if we get soaked, we are outside trying to talk to people and it is great to be a missionary! I love you all and miss you! :)

Love Always,

Elder Wilson

Exchange Part 1

Exchange Part 2

Friday, July 1, 2016

Week 41: Finding people to teach

This week has been extremely warm.  Actually this week was supposed to be the start of 장마 (Jangma) or in English, the rainy season... But,
that did not turn out to be the case.  Also, apparently
대구(Daegu) is
supposed to be the hottest part of all of Korea, AND out of all of
경산 (Gyeongsan) -My current area- is a valley, making it a boiling
pot.  Though, still it is absolutely wonderful here, and I really do love the
weather and all the people that we are able to meet.  Also the landscape is fantastic!  As we do missionary work, we have been able to find so many people and to be able to talk to them about the gospel of Jesus Christ!

This week I want to focus on a talk given by Elder Quetin L. Cook in
the General Conference this last April.  In his talk, he states something that is very intriguing, and that I wanted to focus on today based on what has happened this last week.
He states "Often as we experience the storms of life, we witness the Lord’s hand in providing eternal protections."  Yesterday, on Sunday, I was able to visit a member who really loves the missionaries, but has been unable to come out to church for the past month due to an injury of his foot and because he has had multiple tragic occurrences happen over the past several months, one being that his Father past away just recently.  So I have only been here for 2 weeks, but because he was unable to go to church, we went and visited him.   When we came to his door, he grabbed my hand, and he started to cry -- he wept for the loss of his father. However, he attested to the fact that there are many storms in life, and that as we have these storms, we really do see the Lord's hand always comforting us, and he was able to find much peace and comfort through the Lord.  The Lord loves each and every single one of us and wants us to live the happiest we can. Therefore, he protects us and took upon all pains and afflictions in order for him to help us. I love my Savior and he loves me.

So on to my week.  This last Monday, we emailed and then went to a buffet and ate -- it was fantastic!!  Then after which we went shopping and came to the church to set up for our Family Home Evening. We played a game and everyone really seemed to like it and then we got to talk to everyone and eat and it was a very good day!

On Tuesday, we studied and then we had many appointments scheduled. So, we studied, and went to meet an older gentleman that we had met on the street about 3 or 4 days before; he really wanted to hear what we had to say and wanted to meet us.  So we went to meet with him.   He had a bag, and calls us over.  We started chatting, but unfortunately it turned out that he wasn't really interested in our message.  So that was alright, so we finished talking to him.  Then all our other appointments cancelled on us... So.. That meant one thing... From 12 o'clock to 9 o'clock, we were outside and talking to people and spreading the message of the gospel to everyone!! So we did that.  Then our sister team called us and asked if we could have a meeting because they were busy all day, so we did at 8:30 and that was our day.

On Wednesday, we had our district meeting with other missionaries. After that, my companion and I ate some lunch at our house, and met with an older man who is good at English and has a lot of interest in our Church. So we talked to him; he wants to keep learning and talking -- so that was great!  And then after which, we went outside and we talked to more people.  Then we came back to the church and taught English class and that was our Wednesday.

On Thursday, we studied in the morning, went to our service project for the week; we got to clean up dishes and then ate lunch!
Then afterwards we met with an old grandpa, who wanted to learn English at first, but then he wanted to learn more about the gospel of Jesus Christ.  So we talked to him.   He accepted everything, and we planned to meet him again later that week.  After that, we went out and talked to more people; and had dinner with a college student, who is Atheist, but as we started talking about the gospel and how it has blessed us, he wanted to learn more about it too!!  So we set up another appointment for the week. Then we went outside and talked to more people.

On Friday, we planned for our upcoming week, and went to a place called Cheongdo
청도.  Cheongdo is part of our area, and is directly above Miryang (my former area).  So we went there and talked to a bunch of people.  As we were walking, certain people stopped their car to talk to us. They were some church members from our stake, and they offered us a ride home.  So we gladly accepted their kind offer, and it was great!!  We talked them the whole time.   When we came back home, we ate dinner and talked to more people.

On Saturday, we met out Grandpa and his name is Kim SongGil
김성길!! We talked to him, and we even talked about baptism.   He accepted a date to be baptized!!!  So, he is currently preparing for that!  How exciting!! 

Then we came to the church, got ready for English Class and had the class.  After a little bit, we did an activity and ate crepes together.  Our college student came to English class that we talked to him too.  We even talked to him about baptism, and he accepted a date of his baptism as well!!  Then after all of this, we cleaned up the church and went outside and talked to as many people as we could!

Sunday, we had church and I accompanied the congregation on the piano. Then we had lunch together, had a meeting -- as we were having this meeting all our appointments cancelled again, so we went and visited some members, and this is where my story I shared earlier comes in.  So we went and visited this member and he was very sad and did not feel very peaceful, but as we talked, he was amazing and the Lord really helped him overcome his trials.  Then we visited some other families and then that was our day!!

It is wonderful being here and although sometimes it can be a little hot, I love it here so much!  I love you all and miss you as well and I hope you have a great week.   :)

Love Always,

Elder Wilson
Eating some good stuff!

The Average Missionary Life Prt. 1

The Average Missionary Life Prt. 2

The Average Missionary Life Prt. 3