This week we went to the city of Tonyeong for a zone p-day. It was two over-an-hour bus rides each way. So I am hard-pressed for time. Please forgive the subsequent lameness and list-style blog that you are about to find. I sincerely apologize.
— I finally did it! I found a Korean four-leaf clover! It is currently being pressed in the map section in the middle of my Quad.
– There is an American family in our ward who lives on the American naval base. They are super adorable. Usually Elder Randoph (the super good, experienced Korean speaker) translates for them, but last week he refused and made me do it. Despite my entreaties that it would not be fair to them, he insisted that I needed the practice. And then yesterday, he had to help a less-active/recent-convert member who also doesn’t speak Korean. So I again had to translate. Here is the thing: I really only understand maybe five percent of what is said in Sacrament meeting. So the Markland method of translating: 1) pray really, really hard before, throughout and after, 2) try to listen to the Spirit and let Him guide my words, 3) find out what the topic is, 4) translate what the speaker says to the best of my ability, and 5) make stuff up. Mostly, number 4 is a very small portion of what happens and number 5 is a very large portion. I figure that as long as I only speak doctrine and elucidate the topic that the speaker is addressing then it doesn’t really matter so much if I am actually translating what they say or not. I try, but… Anyway, that is the Markland Method. I may try and develop it into a dvd-based system that the governement and large corporations can use for training interpreters.
– We’ve seen so many miracles this week. I can’t even begin to tell you! A small summary:
– We had a lady to whom we’d given a pamphlet randomly text us back and forth and we now have an appointement with her for tomorrow.
– We had a ward picnic on Saturday and a woman and her son saw it and saw all the foreigners and wanted to know what was up, so she came over and we talked and she is really interested in the church and promised to come next Sunday and gave us her contact info.
– While we were knocking on doors yesterday after church, something happened to me for the first time on my mission–someone invited us in! We taught the first three priniciples of the first lesson. He is an older gentleman and we couldn’t understand each other super well, but we have a return appointment with him and the elders, also for tomorrow.
I think there were more miracles, but I can’t really remember them now, so back to the random:
– This Thursday we have a mission tour with Elder Koichi Aoyagi. He is the second counselor in the Asia North Area Presidency. On Saturday, the Zone Leaders called me up and informed me that I was one of the lucky few chosen “at random” to have an interview with him before the meeting. Great……I told Sister Abbott that maybe I should just start packing my bags now because he might send me home for being a terrible missionary. She didn’t think my humor was very funny.
– So tomorrow we have an appointment with someone who we have no idea as to their identity (see above). She gave us the address of where we were to meet and we spent a large portion of time trying to find it on Friday. We eventually found it – to our horror. It is a… Well, I’ll just leave you in suspense until next week, when we actually see if anything comes to horrific fruition from our appointment at this locale. I’m not super stoked (for where it is, I AM super stoked for the lesson), but Sister Abbott is even more horrified. Don’t worry, we are in no way breaking any type of rule by going to this place. We just both sort of object on “moral”/our physical well-being type of grounds.
On that happy note, I will leave you all in suspense until next week. I love you all and pray for you all so much. This gospel is true. Christ lives. He is our Savior. These things I know with unshakeable faith and certainty.