Sunday, July 23, 2017

Last DongDaeMun district picture at the temple. Temple P day right before transfer day made for a crazy schedule, but it was a good way to end the transfer.

Up close: Sister Choi, Sister Chun, and the Elders (the Mama will try to find out their names...).
Love this girl! Sister Choi was a little sad about transfers, but she's doing good in her trio companionship in DongDaeMun.

First day with Sister Calda!

This picture is only special because there are no buildings. And there are mountains!

So. Hot. But not as bad as Seoul, we heard, so that's good. ㅎㅎ

At the beach with our investigator Anna and her son 도영 (DoYoung).

DoYoung wanted to take a picture, so he just pointed it at the nearest model... ;)

We got to enjoy this band's music for a few minutes before we left.
That Korean man has a beautiful voice.

·         Leanne Noelle Chun <>
·        Jul 23 at 6:41 PM

Wow. DongHae. Here's the thing about DongHae: DongHae is gigantic. Coming from DongDaeMun, an area that we could probably walk side-to-side or top-to-bottom in a couple of hours, to riding almost an hour bus just to visit a member... But that's okay! I have five more weeks to learn this area like the back of my hand, since this is Sister Calda's last transfer.

Don't worry, I'm not freaking out at all. Not at all. Hehe...

The branch is pretty small. One of the things that impressed me when I first came is how close everyone is, even with the missionaries. I'm always trying to compare missionary work in the States (just from what I saw from those fantastic examples who served in my home ward) and missionary work in the Koreas, and, man, it seems pretty different. Of course, there are things that are always the same, but as far as interacting with the members goes, it seems a lot more close-knit here in Korea. Of the Elders in our District--Elder Hipps, Elder Lowe, and Elder Huillet, from my MTC district--one is the District Leader, and one is 2nd counselor in the Branch Presidency.

The 장로님 are awesome.

The members are SO much fun! I have yet to really get to know them, and for them to get to know me, but I've already hit it off with a couple of them, and they are really great. After hearing about them from Sister Calda and meeting them on Sunday, it's becoming more and more apparent to me how much more missionary work is than just talking to people on the streets and setting up appointments to teach the discussions. Yes, that is absolutely a HUGE part of missionary work, and arguably the most important part (at least, it's the first thing I think of when I hear the word "missionary"), but you know another really important, really big part of being a missionary? Working with the members, strengthening their faith and helping them keep their covenants. But you know what else is cool? They already help each other with that, just as part of being a member. We as full-time missionaries just sort of find the people who need a little more care and attention and pull the focus of the ward's love and attention to them.

I really love my mission, 여러분. I know I have a long way to go, a lot to learn and experience, but the more I study, learn, live, and experience the more sure I become that this is going to be the best thing that I will do in my life up to this point.

Before I go I'd like to share a verse that I read during personal study. We have some transfer focuses as a mission (topics that studies and training will be focused on to help us be better missionaries), and this transfer one of those is the Holy Ghost, which means you'll probably be getting a lot of scriptures about Him.
"And by the weak things of the earth the Lord shall thrash the nations by the power of his Spirit." (D&C 133:59) Weak things = missionaries. :)

I'm so grateful for the power of God in our lives. Not only do we literally have His power, manifest in His priesthood, but we can have it even more individually in our lives through His Spirit, the Holy Ghost. I'm still learning how to listen and follow His voice, but I'm so grateful that I have a chance to. I hope you all at least try to find that voice. I can promise you that your life will be better for it, even if it's ways you didn't ever think of before.

I hope you all have a good week!


Sister Chun
DongDaeMun District
Leanne Noelle Chun
Jul 16 at 11:28 PM

Wow, the beginning of my 6th transfer. For those of you who don't know (which may be all of you, because I don't think I've ever explained this), foreign Sister missionaries serve for 12 transfers (Korean Sisters have 13, since they spend a shorter time in the MTC). That means that this transfer is the half-way point of being in the mission field. When you put it like that, I don't have very long, do I? ㅠㅠ 

In other news, transfer calls were on Saturday, and you may be pleased to know that I have re-assigned to DongHae! DongHae is in GangWonDo, which is the country, and it's also by the ocean, so that's good. I'll be serving with Sister Calda of the Philippines, and it's going to be a blast.

Maybe I don't seem sad enough to be leaving DongDaeMun. I have been here for 7 months, after all. Don't get me wrong, DongDaeMun was my first home here in Korea. I will always love it, and it's probably the area I'll know the best. ;) As much as I've loved serving here in DongDaeMun, I'm excited for the new experiences that I'll have out in DongHae.

Honestly, though, I just love Korea so much. I don't know what I was expecting, exactly, but I don't think that I was expecting to love total strangers so much. #missionarylife

There are a lot of changes happening in the mission (SO many missionaries have finished and are going home), so it's a little scary, but it's also kind of exciting. I feel like the Lord has some learning for me to do, and I'm excited for that to unfold. When I gave my bye-bye talk in DongDaeMun I shared this scripture: "Brethren, shall we not go on in so great a cause? Go forward and not backward. Courage, brethren; and on, on to the victory! Let your hearts rejoice, and be exceedingly glad." (D&C 128:22) I read that a couple of days before transfer calls, and as soon as I heard the news about my new area, that scripture is the first thing that popped into my head. Isn't it cool, the way Heavenly Father teaches His children?

Okay, this letter was super scatter-brained, so I apologize if I missed anything important. I love you all! Next week I'll be able to tell you a little more about my new area and companion. Hurray for the future!


Sister Chun

A Note from the Mama....

I was so pleased to hear that on Leanne's transfer Sunday, when she gave her "farewell to the ward" talk, Uncle Scott and Auntie Andrea and little cousin Niki were there visiting in DongDaeMun Ward, so they got to hear her talk and see how all the ward members love Leanne. Not surprised that they love her - still, it warms a mom's heart!

Also, the first picture we took wasn't that great,
but Brother Choi is funny in this one,
so I thought I'd include it.

Companionship study in a cafe....

Hurray for exchanges with this beautiful woman. I can't believe she's going home!

I promise I was doing my hair.
But it was also a convenient moment to show Sister Choi my armpit...

I promise she's not dead...

I promise she's not dead...

Just one of the many derpy photos that my companion has of me. Please enjoy. You're welcome.

Love this family!

Me and the bishop's kids!

Sister Arcilla's birthday celebration on P day.
Thanks to the HwaYang Sisters for providing the ice cream!

Sister Choi made a smorgesbord (don't know how to spell that) of Korean banchan,
and we ate it with rice, and it was amazing.

The bishop's wife 김지은s. She's the best!

This adorable old man.

This 요리사 is my companion!

Waiting to take nicer pictures...

Ward mission leader and his cute wifey!

강헤선s 이문s 같이 식사!

김수경s and family. They love the missionaries and we love them!

박창순b and 이정희s took us to eat at a sushi buffet! My stomach hurts, but it was totally worth it.

마지막 District meeting!

정태희s and her grandson 주예성b. This baby is so cute.

주예린s, the cute baby's older sister...

So. Humid!

Leanne Noelle Chun
Jul 9 at 5:59 PM

Holy. Cow. Last week of the transfer. Isn't it interesting that when you look back, time goes by so fast, and when you look forward, it seems to crawl along?

My companion and I were talking about this phenomenon the other day, and it occurred to us that I'm halfway done with my mission (right?) and she's a little over a year done. O.o Weird, right? Believe me, I haven't not felt like a greenie since I was one, which really wasn't that long ago, actually, when you think about it.
This week has been really wet. Definitely buying rain boots today.

I just want to share an experience that highlights how wonderful my companion, Sister Choi, is. A few weeks ago, we met this guy on the street. He ployed us to do this survey thing, and we started to decline, when he saw our name tags. We stood there with him for a while, and at first Sister Choi tried to explain a little bit about what we do and teach about as missionaries, tried to answer his questions (I admit I wasn't totally sure what was going on, but you don't have to speak good Korean to tell that someone is trying to Bible-bash, or at least do something like it), but it just ended up being kind of a one-sided conversation. I found out later that a lot of what he had been saying was pointed directly at Sister Choi, how because she's a Korean, she's the kind of person to think only she's right, but that her beliefs are actually wrong. Basically, he roasted my companion for a good 10-12 minutes. There were definitely tears after that encounter. Looking back on it, there were certainly opportunities for me to be a better companion in that I could have just told the guy that we had an appointment and we had to go, and pulled my companion away (she's pretty Korean in that when people are talking to her, especially older people, she feels like it's rude to just leave when they're talking. I, as a foreigner, do not have that problem. Please note that both attitudes can be a strength at one time, and a weakness at another), but I didn't do that thing. I did, however, resolve to do so if we were ever in a similar situation.

Well, guess what? We met the same guy while we were walking to the Church from CheungRangRi. And guess what? He did the exact same thing, except this time I made sure that he engaged me in conversation, hoping to spare my sweet companion's feelings. Well, I understood some of the things he said (he talked about the Bible and revelation, and Joseph Smith, and, yep, you guessed it, Korean people and how they're the worst when it comes to spiritual truth), and yeah, he was talking to me, but he was really directing it all at Sister Choi. We were able to leave the encounter pretty quickly, but he still talked enough to make my companion sad and me a little bit angry. And this is where we learn from our experience, Brothers and Sisters.
1) I believe that Jesus Christ helped me remain cheerful and upbeat during that encounter. The fact that I am officially representing Him and His Church is pretty strong motivation for me to not just Book of Mormon high-five people in the face. (No worries, I promise I will not do that on my mission.)

2) I understand a little bit what Christ experienced when He was talking to and about hypocrites. Fortunately for the world, He's a good deal more patient with them than I am. All I want to do is Book of Mormon high-five them in the face. (Please see above. I promise I really won't do that.)

3) I learned a little bit more about Jesus Christ from my companion. We were sitting in the church, waiting for Sister Ham and just sort of recovering from our run-in with that guy; we were talking about how he might be a member of this church here in Korea that we missionaries have been instructed not to teach (because they're kind of scary, and all they want to do is Bible-bash). I said something like this, "Yeah, but that church is a cult, right?" And Sister Choi responded something like this, "I don't want to talk about other churches like that because it would make me like them." Unfortunately, I am not as good a person as my companion. But then, that might be one of the reasons that we were made companions.

Fast forward to the next day, when I read this in D&C 105 (emphasis added):
38 And again I say unto you, sue for peace, not only to the people that have smitten you, but also to all people;
39 And lift up an ensign of peace, and make a proclamation of peace unto the ends of the earth;
Yup, I learned something this week. Interesting how Heavenly Father teaches His children when He can't talk to them directly, huh?

Brothers and Sisters, I'm so grateful for this gospel and the kind of people it can help us become when we live it faithfully. I'm really grateful that I have such a great companion. She teaches me about Jesus Christ not only when we proselyte and teach together, but also by the way she lives. (And she also makes me delicious Korean food, so we get along pretty well.) I love being on a mission!


Sister Chun

Someone, somewhere in this beautiful country is driving this car,
and it makes me happy inside.

And Yup. This happened.

Those of you who know me may know that I do not like cold noodles.
Yup, we're eating cold noodles, and they were delicious.

Waiting in the rain for the light to change....

Sister Ham's door!

She made 떡볶이 (dukbokki) and it was delicious...

Monday, July 3, 2017

·        Mother's Apology: So sorry you all have so much reading to catch up on...I have been traveling, as you will see. The last entry you read was probably from mid-May. So read and gaze on, and enjoy!

      Leanne Noelle Chun <>
Jul 2 at 6:28 PM

We are shining with the Spirit. And sweat. So much sweat.

This picture is terrible but yay exchanges! 
Harry Potter castle.
Oh the miracle of exchanges! I was in Imun with Sister Castro, we were handing out fliers for English class, and we saw this girl that no joke looked exactly like Lorin. Cool but weird. We shared the spiritual message in English class (Mormon Message called "Lessons I Learned as a Boy" by President Hinckley). I wasn't really sure, because I'm not familiar with the people who come to English class, but Sister Castro was pretty excited about the results that she saw. Basically, people felt the Spirit and it was awesome. :) I know I felt His presence. (I started feeling nervous, which doesn't usually happen, and I've concluded that it's because the message we were sharing was important for someone to hear.) We were just finishing exchanges, on our way to the rendezvous point, when Sister Choi calls and reports that a potential investigator whom we've been trying to meet with for a couple of weeks was waiting for us at the subway station. She's Mongolian, but she speaks very basic Korean. We taught her SO simply, but as much as she understood she seems good with it. She was excited about the idea that the gospel helps make families happy (one of the last clarifying questions she asked before we parted ways). Isn't that cool? That the gospel is so profoundly simple? It can help us and those we love happy. All we need to do is trust that promise and do what we need to have that happiness. Who knew that McDonald's would be a place for a spiritual experience?

We ate burritos the size of our faces
and it was awesome. Doing it again today. Aw yiah.
We ate ice cream. It was delicious.

Yesterday was really cool. Hurray for Sunday! First off, Uncle Bong Soo visited, so that was fun. I think Bishop Lee was filming my reaction when they came out of the Chapel together when we arrived. After spending a few minutes together Sister Choi leans over to me and tells me that not just my dad or my grandma but my entire family is really fun. That is something I definitely have to agree with. I'm so grateful for the family of which I'm a part!

Also, Uncle Bong Soo visited. It was weird, but nice. ^_^

 Yesterday was sort of on and off rain, but the evening had cleared up, so we decided to go street boarding. This is a finding activity where the missionaries stand with a board that they made and ask people to stick stickers on the board in an effort to begin a gospel conversation. It was going okay, same old same old; the rain turned on again, so we put our umbrellas up. We thought it was going to go away soon after, but no. It started to seem like it wasn't going to let up, so we were deciding to go home, making some last-ditch efforts at getting people to stop and stick a sticker. Our enthusiastic greeting stopped this girl who had been hurrying by without an umbrella. As soon as she saw that Sister Choi offered her own, reassuring the girl that I had one and we could walk together. The girl was sort of dumbstruck that these two cheesy-grinning strangers would offer an umbrella like that. We gave her our number and off she went. We left soon after and bumped into on the way home. She had just finished sending us a text that asked us to let her treat us to dinner ("Please don't say no!"); we once again reassured her that she could take the umbrella and off she went. One of the last things she said was "I love you two so much!" It was adorable, and we might get a free meal, so that's kind of nice. ;) Going home from that experience my heart was so light, despite how wet everything was (my shoes may or may not be ruined. Hopefully they can dry out in this humid weather). It really is amazing how happy you can feel when you serve others.

Another cool thing that happened this week was that Elder Choi of the Seventy visited us at our ward building! There were several zones of missionaries there, of course, but what was really neat was that Elder Choi and Sister Ku first met in Dongdaemun ward building (the first stake organized in Korea). 신기하죠? The training was fantastic, but I think I'll have to save that for next week. :) I'm out of time now, but I love you all! Hope you have a good week!


Sister Chun

How is my companion not the cutest!
I made a case for my Book of Mormon!

Practicing for the musical number we performed
at the conference with Elder Choi. It actually went okay.

If you can zoom in at this picture, that banner definitely says
Don't Die without Jesus It's Hell. Well, they're not technically wrong.

Sister Choi made Bulgogi!

The chins wanted to say hi.