Sunday, August 13, 2017

Final Zone Conferences and First Interviews for August and a Happy Announcement.

We went to bed Monday evening and seemed to wake up Sunday Morning, the week went by so quickly!  We had the three final zone conferences and then on Friday started interviews again.  These young people truly keep us laughing and singing.  We can't get enough of them. Saturday we stopped and caught our breath.

We want to start this week's blog off with a great comment from one of our sister missionaries. We hope you find the light and joy in it she shared:

For some reason, I've been thinking about when I was set apart as a missionary this past week. I honestly can't remember much at all from my blessing--only two things, and one of them was about my smile--my Stake President counseled me to smile and said others would be blessed by it and that it was really important for me to smile. We had just left our house again after breaking our fast yesterday and we sat down at a bus stop. This woman was walking past and I remembered my setting apart and looked up and flashed a huge smile at her--AND SHE STOPPED. She walked back a step and looked at my name tag and said "예수 그리스도?! (Jesus Christ?)" Then she said in Korean, "I see you have a book. Is that God's word? How is it different from the Bible?" President Turner, we walked to the Church and met with her right then. She said she is looking for a way to live with Heavenly Father. I am so insufficient in so many ways but if I know anything, it's the answer to her question--we told her that we absolutely can tell her how to live with Heavenly Father! It was a huge miracle after fasting and seeking the spirit.

 We started the week in the Suwon Zone.  What an entertaining bunch!
 We wonder if you'll recognize any of them in their goofy posing. 

 The camera seemed to have a mind of it's own on this one....
I finally got them settled down and we had a great picture.  Some are a little hard to see, but somewhere in here are all the members of the zone...

We then moved on to the Seoul South Zone at the Noryangjin ward building.  It was another great conference with training by all the zone leaders.  They are so mature... and then again,

 Q&A period with President Turner and the Assistants
 Fitness, health and cleanliness training by Sister Turner! 5 minute warm up before getting down to business!

We then finished up with the Anyang zone conference.  I wasn't as diligent with pictures here and only caught the group photos. Only twelve members of this zone, but they carry an amazing spirit and determination.
This zone sang "Happy Birthday" to our granddaughter Alli, here they are sending her "hearts"

We didn't give ourselves a rest after the three fast-paced busy days of conferences but went right into interviews.  The first zone was the Suwon zone and we did it by districts.  While the president was interviewing one on one, Sister Turner was with the district talking about companion relations.  We know that to be most effective we really have to be one as companions.  She had them play a game where she had a list of several dozen questions.  Sister Turner would ask the questions.  If the companion didn't know something, such as favorite color, food, number of siblings, birthday, etc. their companion got to squirt them in the face with water.  It was tons of fun!

To get the full effect of the last one, we had to get some live action video...
We love getting to pose with them.  Sister Turner encouraged them to pose with their 'weapons'!

These two had to leave before President Turner could get a picture, but they too played the game.

Of course, there were always the things that are unique for our experience which we love to share.  These are things your sons and daughters may see, but don't have cameras with them or have not sent them. 
This picture is of a work area where the building was taken down in a few days. I run this route once or twice a week.  Between runs the building was completely razed.  I took this so that I can measure how long it takes to put up a new building.  They work so quickly here, it will be by the end of the year, I would expect.  It's likely to be a multi-story apartment building of concrete.
Terri and I attended a reception recognizing the 56th year of a relationship between the Ivory Coast and the South Korean governments.  It's the 57th year of independence for the Ivory Coast.  It was an interesting evening.  Our friend, a member of our ward here is the consul general for the embassy of Ivory Coast.  he is a true gentleman.

Here's Terri filling time while President Turner is doing interviews.  Badminton is a big game here, probably because it requires so little space compared to tennis.  One of our missionaries was on the Korean National Team at one time.  Everyone likes this game.
Finally, as I was out for a morning run, I came upon a man with his motorcycle hooked to a trailer with who I assume is his wife in the trailer.  A picture only shows she was in the trailer, maybe she hopped out.  I had to video this so you believe this really happened.
Things are always so much fun here.  A new adventure around every corner.  We expect if everyone looked at life with a new perspective, they'd find unique things all around them.  Some things just seem so common now... 

Sunday, August 6, 2017

First week of zone conferences and a farewell

Zone conferences are some of the most anticipated activities of our mission.  For us it's all about being with the missionaries.  For the missionaries, it's all about the treat that Sister Turner prepares for them.  We both get our fill!
 The theme of our conference this transfer is "mission unity". For a mission to be 'one', it starts with the basic companionship.  We are focusing on good working relationships.  The average zone has about 20 missionaries.  Some have more, some less.
 Included in the training is health and cleanliness.  Sister Turner helps them focus on their exercise time, drinking lots of fluids in the very hot and humid weather we are 'enjoying', and cleanliness of living quarters.  All seem to need improvement.  We started with the Incheon Zone.
 They can be serious,
 and they can be less than serious...
We also like to celebrate birthdays.  With the heavy lunch and warm weather, rather than a cake or other pastry, we had a refreshing drink of watermelon, pineapple, kiwi, and Sprite to celebrate with. Not everyone gets to have their birthday on zone conference.

We next had the Gangseo Zone,
 You have to be careful you don't leave your camera alone for a moment.  It takes random pictures of whoever is standing in front of it.

 These sisters sang a wonderful number that was too long to put on the blog, but if you want to see it on-line, you can go to our facebook account: KSSM Pres Turner.
They are all very attentive students.  The zone leaders trained, the sister training leaders trained, and President Turner also had some time.  The Assistants had some awesome training skits as well.

Next up was the Gyeonggi Zone.

 We have been alternating between common Hawaiian hay stacks and a Mexican version.  Today was the Mexican version for your viewing pleasure.  Very little remaining, not even a smell!  They really enjoyed this.
 More training...
 More pictures
 The sister front and center was going home in two days so they all had to pose like pictures from her home country of Thailand!
This elder from the Philippines amazed us all with his sweet voice as he sang a solo.

 This sweet sister from Thailand returned home this week for health treatment.  We had a final meal together with her and her companion before taking her to the airport the next morning.
 This sister worked doubly hard because all the learning in Korean required her to have a better understanding of English first since all our materials are between English and Korean.  She had a good foundation.  She worked hard and faithfully.  We will miss her so much.
 We like to celebrate all the accomplishments of our missionaries, like the fact he had his braces removed earlier in the day and he is now a different man. Five years is a long time!
 There is always the random picture for the grandkids that has to be added...  He looked like we felt.  The heat index was 112 at this time.  Your sons and daughters are doing amazing despite the weather.
We had to have the camera help us get a picture of our staff meeting.  We meet each Monday evening for an hour to discuss the affairs of the mission.
One video for your entertainment.  I'm sorry it goes by so fast.  The intent was to show you that the town of Bucheon has a length of road decorated with old bicycles painted in bright colors.  Sorry if you get sick trying to watch it.  If you pause it occasionally, you'll see the bikes.
We look forward to next week and another set of  zone conferences.  Additionally, we also start our next round of interviews.  New companionships, new challenges, new goals, new opportunities.  They are all hot and tired at the end of the day.  But they continue to be pioneers working through any challenge that comes their way.  We couldn't be happier or have bigger smiles.  We hope you do too!