This week we had two mission conferences. Half of the missionaries came Friday and the other half on Saturday. The solar new year holidays are celebrated here. We noticed a big difference in the traffic with so many people out of the city to visit with family in other places.
One of our APs explained about the culture surrounding this holiday. A big emphasis is placed on remembering your ancestors. The Korean people have suffered under foreign occupation, war, and economic collapse. Now the country is very wealthy, but they remember those who endured the earlier difficulties.
Sister Cannon talked to the missionaries about keeping themselves healthy and their apartments clean and in good repair.
The missionaries who have achieved their goals in learning the language were recognized. And some special awards were given too. We had a "Megaphone" award for some missionaries with loud voices, a "Better Late Than Never" award for a missionary whose arrival was delayed a transfer, plus an extra day, a "Twins" award for missionaries that have a twin sibling. My DH was mentioned as a "Mr. Fix it Award" winner. The "Uninvited Guests" Award went to one of the apartments that has had a bad case of roach infestation. (We hit them hard last week, so hopefully, they'll get cleanest apartment next time.) One of my favorites was "The Shortest Letter to the President" Award. "Hi President, I'm fine. Have a good day!" And Sister Sonksen won the "Selfie Queen" award because she loves to take photos with the missionaries! All in good fun!
Two of our elders shared their amazing talents.
It was amazing!
We had jump rope contests. They really had fun with this! One group of four sisters was able to count to 106 jumps!
Played a traditional Korean game
The senior sisters helped with some mending for the missionaries.
Kimchee rice for lunch, then back for the afternoon session.
In October, there was a special mission reunion in SLC for all the mission presidents of the Korean missions from when the first Korean mission was opened. The history of the early members was remembered. Two of the members of "The Piano Guys" served their missions in Korea, so they did some music for the reunion. We got this from a you tube video of the event.
Then we watched the missionary broadcast from SLC. It was a meeting of the Missionary Executive Committee with three of the apostles and other church leaders. Part of it was regarding the change in the missionaries' schedules. This makes it easier to adapt their daily routine according to their individual needs and the culture where they are serving. They are able to get out of their apartments earlier in the day now. And they will have fewer key indicators to report.
This Saturday night is the first in a long time that we did not see or hear any protesters. Well, we did see one guy with a sign. Apparently they decided to celebrate the new year too.
In our Sunday meetings today we had a group discussion about the Asia North Area's plan and goals for the coming year. I love the vision statement:
"Because we want to live with Heavenly Father again, we Love, Elevate, Simplify, Strive, Strengthen, Invite, and Find Joy in the gospel of Jesus Christ."
Strive - to find names of our ancestors and perform their ordinances in the temple
Strengthen - our conversion by reading the Book of Mormon
Simplify and elevate - Sabbath day worship
Invite - others to learn about the gospel of Jesus Christ
Love - others by ministering to them one by one
Here is a scripture from Romans 13 that I enjoyed today about something I had not thought of before. The "Armour of Light". What a great concept with all the contention in the world, we can have, and be, and share the light.
11- 14 And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.