Monday, April 22, 2013

April 21 Email

Hello from Korea!

This week went by super quick with lots of good stuff. First of all, we went to the cherry blossom festival and it was a slight let down in that none of the trees had blossomed yet, woof. On the totally awesome bright side, there were so many missionaries that went. I got to see tons of my friends that were in my MTC district and hang out for the day. We all had no idea each other would be there so when we saw each other, we all flipped out, haha. You would have thought it had been a lot longer than three weeks that we'd been apart judging by our reactions to each other, haha. We all rented bikes and rode along the Kang River (the big one that divides Seoul). Today we are going to our zone leaders house (they have an actual house which is unheard of here) and having a Korean BBQ in their yard with our district. I already know the food will taste awesome because the main ingredient to a BBQ is meat and that's what Korea does best if you ask me. This week we had our first baptismal service. (I would do exclamation points but this computer won't let me) My companion baptized this couple that were in their 70's. I didn't get to know them super well because they had been taught all the lessons by the elders that had been here before us. They asked them if they had been baptized or not and they said that they had, but the previous Elders didn't clairify that it had to be done by proper Priesthood authority. (they had been baptized by another church). I only had one lesson with them but it was still an awesome experience. Cool thing about Korean Baptisms is that they make them a cake and put candles on it and sing "happy baptism to you," haha. (I think that might have just been my ward because everyone says they've never heard of that happening.) Anyway yea, I'll definitely have to get my kids a cake for their baptisms and we will be singing "happy baptism."

 I'll tell you about one of our investigators named Brother Bae. He is in his mid 20's and is really cool. He loves meeting with us and really wants to get baptized but the only problem is that he smokes a pack a day. Thats one thing I knew was common in Korea but was shocking of how common both smoking and drinking were in their culture. A pack a cigarettes is 2 dollars. I think in the U.S smoking and drinking is socially acceptable but in Korea it's socially expected. My companion attends Pusan University (in the southern part of Korea) and he has countless stories about him having to be the only one of his friends that doesn't drink or smoke. I have so much respect for the members that are forced to grow up in a culture where they are expected to do it and are strong enough to stay in the gospel. We have a ways to go with Brother Bae, but I know that we can get him there. We just barely went shopping for the BBQ before we came to email and I just learned that you have to pay 10 cents to use a shopping cart?? what? The place we shop is 8 stories high. Its called EMart and its pretty much Walmart/Lowes/BestBuy/MallFoodCourt/Dillards in one 8 story building. Korea is crazy, haha. That's all for this week. From Nok Bun,

With Love. Elder Nixon

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