Dear Family and Friends,
Well this week was another tiring week. As my companion always says, "Everyday is leg day." Basically we are always walking up and down stairs. We have to walk up 10 flights of stairs to get back to our apartment each day. Not sure how much weight I have lost, but I think quite a bit. We do a lot more moving than in the MTC haha. Luckily my shoes are holding up well. I have a couple of blisters and the odd ache here and there but I'm all good.
So the ward that I am serving in is called shin chon ward (신촌). There are a lot of great families in the ward. I'm not very good with Korean names, so I can't remember very well. Its such a big ward that it's hard to talk with everyone, especially in Korean. So I'm trying the best I can to continually get to know some more people. We always try to invite members to lessons, but they're all so busy so it is difficult. I love the ward a lot and I love how nice they are about my not so good Korean.
Every Tuesday and Saturday at the church, we teach free English. On Saturday, we split into groups, give lessons for an hour, and then rejoin for a spiritual thought. We gave the spiritual thought on Saturday. It went well which was good. There are about 20 people who come each week to English class. It's super fun to teach English because I get to talk with people who are struggling in a language just like me! On Tuesday, its a free English talking class. Less people show up to that one.
The prices of food here are very different. It is overall more expensive. We get about $160 dollars every two weeks for food, travel, cleaning, etc. The office takes care of all of our housing bills and costs. It costs a little more than a dollar each time we take a subway or a bus. It definitely starts to add up with how much traveling we do. Gas station food and drinks are pretty cheap. Usually you can get a bottle of water for about 50 cents. Other than that, its expensive. Peanut butter, honey, butter, cheese, meat, and chocolate and very expensive. So pretty much anything delicious is expensive haha. But I'm doing fine money wise. McDonald's is about the same, but here they have free delivery. If they had that in America, it would not be good. One thing that they have here is carbonated milk, called milkis. Its actually super good and I drink it all the time. Oh and I brought some Dr. Pepper last P-day. It tasted so good. We have a washer in our apartment but no dryer. Korea doesn't believe in dryers. So we hang our clothes up on these racks. It helps them last a lot longer but they are more wrinkly.
This Sunday we had Stake Conference. We are in the Seoul Stake. It is super weird to not have President Hettinger as my Stake President. I pretty much understood nothing in stake conference except when a member of the seventy spoke to us in English. He gave an amazing talk about turning our "tents" or ourselves away from Sodom or Satan and towards the temple. One of our Chinese Investigators, who we have seen in a while, named Paul came with us. He seemed to enjoy it. We has taught a lot of lessons this week, but didn't seem to make much progress. We met with T.G. quite a bit this week. He really likes our message and thinks it makes sense, but doesn't think God exists or cares about us. We are working a lot with him about prayer and how to receive answers to his prayers. We weren't able to meet with Idongwon and Ominsuk this week unfortunately because how busy they are. Everyone in Korea works so hard all the time. It is amazing.
Quick Story of the Week: The night after the adult session of Stake Conference, we took the Subway home at about 9:30. We were on the right track to get home when Elder Julseth decided to try a faster one with few stops. We ended up waiting for a long time for the train to arrive. When we finally got on, I decided to go sit next to this Korean man on the Subway and talk to him. I was surprisingly able to understand what he said and able to share the Book of Mormon with him. He ended up reading the whole introduction the the book right then. I was able to give him the book and get his phone number with the help of Elder Julseth. I felt so good talking with him and even though we got home at 10:30, it was well- worth taking the wrong train. We have been getting denied a lot recently by people on the streets, and this was definitely a small miracle. We were able to meet our goals for the day just through getting up the courage to awkwardly talk to someone. And I know that if we put in effort to do follow Christ and serve God, we will be rewarded openly.
Love your favorite missionary,