Tuesday, May 26, 2015

I became really close with her and helped her through the mission paper process! Guess where she's going on her mission?!

So many things to share this week! I'll start with the biggest news!

In September, when I was in Gok ban jeong the BYU students came to our ward. They stayed for a semester attending a university in Korea. One of the first few nights of meeting them, Angel came up to me and said she decided that night to serve a mission because of our influence on her! I became really close with her and helped her through the mission paper process! She finally got her papers in and guess where she's going on her mission?! KOREA SEOUL SOUTH MISSION! 

Haha seriously though what are the chances?! I hope she goes back to Gok ban jeong ward as a missionary. The members would go crazy to see her as a missionary! She enters the MTC in October, so I'll already be home by then, but I'll get to see her a lot before she leaves on her mission and sit front row at her farewell! She was in Korea when she decided to go on a mission, and she's coming to that same mission she was at! Ughh words. English never sounds right to me anymore.

I have a fan girl! At English class this past week, there was a member from the Seoul mission just visiting. She saw me and told me that she knew my name! Haha turns out she's a fan of mine! She said she watched the video of me opening my mission call on youtube! She pulled it up on her phone and showed it to me. Yup, it was definitely me. As I talked to her more, she told me that she had seen the video over a year ago! 

She would constantly show that video to ask other missionaries if they knew me from the MTC. Haha she had been waiting over a year to meet me! She saw me at the BYU wind symphony concert and was so shocked to see that it was actually me! I think she found out I was serving in Gang nam and so she came to actually meet me. She's super cool and some people would think that story was kind of creepy, but it's sweet! My one fan probably got me a lot of views on my youtube page(;

So last week actually wasn't Buddha's birthday. People kept telling us the wrong dates for some reason! TODAY is actually his birthday. The area is going to be so crowded and awesome for proselyting! And casually looking at the lanterns while doing it.. haha last pday we went to Gok ban jeong and I was really sad! reminiscing about the good times and I realized that if I was this sad about an area and I was still in Korea, how much more sad (English..) would I be when I leave Korea?!

We tried a service project this week! We stole the Elder's trash tongs and went to work! I had Sister Northridge pick a street on our map and we headed out! We started picking up trash for about an hour and we had a TON of success. It was mostly all because of Sister Northridge. People were shocked to see a white person picking up trash in THEIR country! They kept coming up to her and asking her what she was doing! Of course no one gave me a second glance cause I'm Korean. Cool. But we gave out our number a lot and we might have some investigator potential! 

Anyway, we picked up so much trash during that hour. It's sad how there's so much liter in Korea! It's because there are no garbage cans to put trash in! Our trash bags were full by the end. Most of it was cigarettes too! Sometimes when there were other people around, I'd emphasize that I was picking up their cigarette buds and now maybe they'll feel bad about littering their smokies!

We met with our investigator this week and I asked her, "Have you ever thought about why there are so many churches on the earth today?" and she said "Yes! Because God is busy!" Hahaha I think that was the best answer I've ever heard.

Also, one of the Gang nam members is dating my trainer's brother. So this week we asked our member if we could do a practice lesson with her and we set a time to meet. We go to the appointment and her boyfriend shows up. We were totally crashing a date! We ate yummy food and even got dessert at the end. I've never been on a date as a missionary, so that was a first! haha missionary life..

Anyway, random stuff this week. Like always.
Have a great one!

Sister April Johnson

Picking up trash

Sticker boarding on Gang nam Dae ro!

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

We got to see a ton of the Seoul missionaries so I got to see all of my old MTC friends (:

We ate "fire ramen" this week! And seriously. The name perfectly explains the taste! IT WAS THE WORST THING EVER. It wasn't a hot taste. It was a spicy taste. If that makes any sense. We would eat it and then feel like our mouth was on fire. Drinking anything did not help. The only thing that helped was to keep eating the stuff! Haha adventures. Plus we had the bright idea that 7up would be a good drink to go with it. WRONG. The carbonation would just come back up and bring all the heat with it. Haha we're smart.

We got to go to the BYU Wind Symphony this past week! They had a couple concerts in Korea and so we were allowed to go to the Seoul Mission with our investigators. We had an investigator and a less active come with! It was probably one of the most craziest, but fun nights ever. We were running around trying to find tickets and seating and finding our investigator and things like that.

 On top of that, we got to see a ton of the Seoul missionaries so I got to see all of my old MTC friends(: ALSO I ran into An seong members and Gok ban jeong members! YAY! My favorite family of all time was there too! They were in An seong but recently moved to the Seoul mission so I knew I was never going to see them again. But low and behold they were at the symphony too! It was a great day(: I saw one of the daughters and ran and hugged her when she wasn't looking! We both cried.. I'm such a cry baby!

Then we had a crazy Friday. We actually picked up an investigator! We're going to do the family English program with her and so that will be good! She met missionaries 10 years ago, but recently referred herself so we could start that program again! I hope there is lots of potential with her(: Right after that lesson, we got a phone call from a former investigator. We met right away and she started asking us about the Book of Mormon. (She thinks we're all Indians because the Lamanites were cursed with dark skin) But it was a good 갑자기(all of a sudden) lesson! She wanted to meet again around dinner time so we had some time to kill. 

We decided to go to the Buddhist temple nearby to look around and "proselyte" (I put that in quotations cause we're not supposed to proselyte at other church's areas... bad missionary) ANYWAY. It's Buddha's birthday soon so there were lots of decorations and lanterns. Super pretty. 
We ran into some members visiting from Utah and started talking to them when an older guy comes up and asks if we were Mormons. He then continues by coming really close to my face reciting scriptures in English. I swear I was having flashbacks from the last time this happened with that lady! 

I was definitely getting creepy vibes. That's when a worker called us over. I thought we were gonna get in trouble cause we're missionaries of a different faith at a Buddhist temple. Turns out that she just saw the whole situation and wanted to save us from the creepy man! She told us that we shouldn't talk to strangers... Uhh.. Little does she know that that's what we do as missionaries though... haha there were more crazy things that happened that day, but I'm running out of time.

Anyway, I hope everyone had a great week and I hope you all have another one!

Sister April Johnson

Monday, May 11, 2015


Okay last email I said it was my brother's 21 birthday. I lied. He's only 20... HAHA TYPO! But on the plus side! His Bells Palsy is almost perfectly healed!!!! YAY!

So to explain the title of my email.. WE ATE DOG THIS WEEK! And it was actually pretty good! The only part that really freaked me out was the fat. Just cause I knew it was dog fat, it was really hard for me to get down. Haha I'm on a mission in Korea. I had to eat dog at least once! Probably won't have it again though.. Those poor doggies..

Last week I ended my email pretty abruptly. We had a member bring his grandchildren to the church for a brief discussion. First of all, the grandchildren thought they were gonna have a fun day with the gramps! Until they got out of the car and realized they were at our church. He opened up 1 Nephi 14 with them (about abominable churches and stuff) and they just sat quietly while he scolded them for going to the wrong church. It was pretty... awkward. But he is such a good member!
 He has such a strong testimony and he just wants to share it with his loved ones. Maybe not the right way to approach it though.. Haha it's okay though. We cleared all the awkwardness up and gave them pamphlets about our church in case they ever wanted to learn more!

We also went to the temple this week! We haven't been since the beginning of last transfer and the end of this transfer so the last time we went was in February! TOO LONG. But it was amazing as always. The spirit you feel there is comparable to none other. I'm so privileged to be able to attend the temple as a missionary!

We have an investigator that never actually wants to meet with us. So we just do our lessons with her over the phone. Last time we committed her to read the Book of Mormon and we asked her if she had read it, but she hadn't because she had been on "prayer mountain" for 10 days. She's had a really hard past and has big trauma from her ex-husband who was a pastor. She has a hard time trusting organized religions because of the pastors. She can't trust their "angelic" image. Luckily for her, our church doesn't have pastors! Haha I told her that and she was pretty shocked! Just more the reason to start coming to our church, right? 

Anyway, she's been focusing on trying to get the bad spirits our of her on that prayer mountain. The priests there have been trying to cast out the devil inside of her... So as we were on the phone, I told her to maybe focus more on God. That as she focuses on Him, Satan won't be able to haunt her as easily. He becomes blocked as that belief and faith in God takes over! I told her that if she focused on the bad spirits and trying to cast them out, it just makes her concentrate on the bad. But if she focuses on God, then they'll just be automatically blocked out! You know...? Smart, right? haha I tried really hard to get her to come to church, but maybe next time I'll get her!

In zone training this month, we learned about diligence and obedience. What's the difference? Diligence is doing something because you DESIRE to do it. Obedience is doing something because you HAVE to do it. As missionaries, we have a saying "Obedience brings blessings, exact obedience brings miracles." But our mission president has changed it to "Obedience brings blessings, diligence brings miracles.”

 I need to work on being a more diligent missionary and working my hardest! Not just do thing just because I have to. It was actually a great training for me because I have been in a slump lately. I feel like missionary work is just numb. But now I know how to change! How to become a better missionary. I just need to be diligent and do it cause I want to(: 

 Sister April Johnson

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

I knew that even though I felt like a bad missionary for not having much success in this area, I knew that I was still doing an okay job

First off, HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY BROTHER! He's turning 20!  Also, he just got Bell’s Palsy and so his face is half paralyzed. Pray for him!

On Monday it was still my birthday in America and so we went hiking with some members and the district! We also had a picnic and had a feast! Then we went to the Han River and went bike riding with some awesome sisters! I also got to see the 63 three tower. I don't have pics of it cause my camera is broken but it's cool for three reasons. One: it used to be the tallest building in Korea. Two: apparently it's on the new Avengers movie! Three: it's where my dad proposed to my mom! Super sweet, right?!

Ran into a Gok ban jeong (my last area) member on the subway the other day. She was heading to the temple! I almost cried when I saw her! It's crazy how much these members have truly impacted my life!

Anyway, lately I have been feeling like a bad trainer! Gang nam isn't the easiest place to do missionary work.. No investigators, not many member appointments, and no one actually lives in Gang nam. They all just come to shop and sight see. So I've been feeling pretty lame lately- a bad missionary, not having a lot of teaching practice for Sister Northridge. I've been pretty hard on myself, but at 12 week followup (a meeting for trainers and their trainees) they have the greenies bare their testimonies about something they learned in Korea that past month. One sister's testimony really hit me. She said that all missionaries were amazing. Why? Cause they are all here to serve Him. As simple as that. But as she said it, I knew that even though I felt like a bad missionary for not having much success in this area, I knew that I was still doing an okay job because at least I'm out here trying to serve Him. I made that sacrifice in my life to truly share the gospel.

Anyway, lots of crazy things just happened so my mind is all over the place. We just had a member bring his high school grandkids to the church and tell them that their church isn't true and that they needed to repent and join the true church. So... gotta go and help figure out that one... BYE! Have a great week!

Love y'all!

Sister Johnson