"Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. " --- John 8:10

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Holidays and Special Dates

I'm seeing the pictures [of your Thanksgiving] and [my brothers] are a bunch of motjangies! (stylish guys...but it sounds ok in Korean). 

My Thanksgiving week wasn't bad either. We ate well. Had Thanksgiving at the West Casey Chapel with the branch, some investigators, and the zone. I like our zone. I helped make the pies(for 200)the night before. 

We also had a Thanksgiving with the orphanage at the Pihl's house this week.  We are not allowed to talk to them about the gospel. Mostly just teach a little English message and play Bang! with them. We're more there to be their friends than anything else.

Thanksgiving with the orphanage.

We got punked more than 15 times [this week], but we had 4 people come to church (which one-ups Kylie, who is in South America. What up?!). 

We also had a goodbye bang! party for Sister Th and welcomed in Sister E, who is the daughter of a guy from the 70. I asked her if she preferred Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter and she said, "What? In a 'who wins in a fight between Gandalf, Dumbledore, and Yoda?' kind of way?" and won a lot of points with me. The answer by the way, is that Yoda loses. Gandalf and Dumbledore... double-team him, though if I had to choose one I would probably bet on Dumbledore.

Man, I've been Christmas trunky for a while. What are you guys going to do for Christmas? 

As a bonus. I remember you mentioning a Christmas package. I'm actually ok with you not sending me anything, because it costs a ridiculous amount of moolah and I don't want to put that burden on you guys. So greatest preference? I'm fine. Don't send anything. But if send something you must, whatever you do, don't send it through the regular way. I've got some friends on the base and shipping is like 5 bucks, and it's way faster.

And, bonus [#2], I'm talking to President about when I go home. My choices are May 15th or June 29th. [I'm]leaning pretty heavily to the May side. Just don't really feel like the mission would miss a step without me, and even though I'm fine, I have to admit that I'm pretty excited to come home. Plus bonus time with Tyler before he goes!  So, I'm leaning pretty hard to May, but I would love your input as well. What would you do and what do you want me to do?

Love you,

Elder Whitlock

Sunday, November 23, 2014

So Much to be Grateful For

So this week we picked up a new guy... who is being fellowship attacked in all the best ways, so I think he has a lot of potential. I sang a song and gave the holy ghost talk at a baptism (other elders, super cool guy). 

"The Strong Force"

Also talked a lot about superheroes. Guided my companion (asked the questions) to make our district into a super hero team called "the Strong Force" which sounds lame, but it was pretty fun. He's got ice powers, Sister T talks to animals and can do stuff with oceans, Elder C turns into a yellow and squinty eyed mini-hulk thing, Sister Th flies and has laser vision, Elder B has super speed, and I'm the mental master: telepathic and telekinetic. We made up backstories and villains, and plots, and our hideout, and...we have a lot of time on our hands. Jundoing to empty space is difficult.

We went to the orphans this week...and...had some eggnog (fairly lifechanging stuff)...and...that's about it.

Had a funnish Seoul P-day last week. 

With Elder S
In Seoul

This is my District at the Seoul Temple.
The squirrel in the front, Sister Th, is from my generation.  She likes to strike poses.
It's sort of a Sister Th-ism.  We sat together on the plane ride over, and she is going home this week.
We went shopping in Insa dong and saw some cool stuff. Park built where the ruins of a Buddhist temple are.  Some of the ruins still poke out.  That's the place where the Korean independence (from Japan) movement started.

Today was funner. Bang! party at the Pihls. Sister Th's final P-day. I was wrecked by [her] both games, but it was fun to snack and talk with everybody.

We will be with the Pihls for Thanksgiving, and also with the Branch, so we get it twice.  That is, you guessed it, twice the delicious!  Life is always good.

Send lots of pictures, and know that I love all of you.

Elder Whitlock

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Bunkers and Buddies

Gonna focus today on pictures for you, but thank you so much for the email.  Love you!

Elder Whitlock with his companion and his District Leader.


Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Dreams and Nightmares

Yeah, it is freezing here. For me. I don't have the greatest blood circulation due to my low blood pressure, and being tiny. To rectify the situation, Elder B has put me on a gain diet and I'm now working out his way, which is less strenuous, but for some reason I feel more sore. Hopefully I get huge.

Family Home Evening: every week on Monday in the Pihl's apartment, which is in the same complex as ours. The missionaries and a couple of recent converts come, but it is mostly for LAs and potential investigators.  [The Pihls] are both from the Utah area, I think. He's a retired jet pilot from the Air Force. Fun people. Took us to a haunted house this week.

Elder Whitlock with an FHE buddy.  Photo Credit: the Pihls

"FHE fights", complements of Sister Pihl

 Trip to the haunted barrick on base with the Pihls and the children from the orphanage:

With the director of the orphanage (and who knows what else!)

"Say, 'chem chee!'" Sister Pihl said, "Great night. This is a first for the Korean children... 
They don't celebrate Halloween here." Photo credit, Elder Pihl.

The branch has maybe a hundred people who come. I'm not sure how many less actives there are out here, but there are quite a few stronger members as well. Much bigger than Chuncheon ward. The leadership is also good. President Peden is actually new, he just barely got his calling on the first Sunday I was there, but he runs a nice MCM (first one of those I've been to besides one in Gireum where they forced it because a 70 was coming). He's got lots of leadership experience. He's the camp’s Command Sergeant Major, which puts him at basically the top of the Sergeant tree (So most officers are above him, but not all, and there is only one of them in each major installation. He's pretty successful.)

Actually, this week wasn't the best. We got 14 lesson stats, which is a fair week for me in any other area, but this place is supposed to be the promised land and of those "lessons" we actually only met with two people. Everyone else punked their appointments. So I jundoed for the whole week, but it turns out that this is actually a terrible jundo area because no one is really around.

I thought it was funny that it advertised "musical and coffee."
There is a lot of dumb advertising here.
Yeah, this is my city.  Pretty empty, huh?

So yeah, just another "Why am I even here?" kind of week.

The only guy we met for more than 10 minutes is.... African-American-Korean. Dad was a soldier in the war who went home when it was done. Raised by his Korean mom. Speaks Korean and some English. Interesting guy. The fun thing about him is he told us about a dream he had where he wakes up in the night and rolls over and sees that his wife is Buddha, with the massive earlobes and mustache and everything. Then a bunch of his anscestors appear to him and tell him that since they didn't follow Christ they are being blocked from going to heaven by the gods guarding the path and that he has to do something about it. Needless to say, we'll be having a good look at D&C [138] next visit.

Love you!
Elder Whitlock