Monday, January 31, 2011

I don't think I'm in the MTC anymore

Hey everyone,
Well I'm in Korea. It's pretty crazy. I'll just go through everything we did this past week and give you a quick update. So we flew into Incheon on Tuesday night. We got there around 9:30 or 10 and of course our luggage didn't make it with us. So we all just kind of sat around while the natives talked with the airport people and told us what to do. Then we met Pres. Lee and his wife and the AP's. My mission president is really nice. He always has a big smile on. And he speaks English pretty well. Usually they take us out to dinner that first night, but since it was so late we just went to the place where we were going to spend the night: THE TEMPLE! It was sweet. They have a whole room of bunk beds and showers and stuff like that. By the time we got there it was midnight and we were all exhausted from jet lag so we just crashed. The next morning we got up and got ready and our mission president picked us up again and we went to a member's restaurant for breakfast. We all sat crossed-legged on the floor and had this Korean soup dish and kim chi. It was pretty good. Except my legs are too long to fit under the table so it gets a little uncomfortable. The heated floors are amazing! I love them. My feet get cold if we're outside walking around a lot so it feels really good to get home and take off my shoes. Oh yeah, I'm in a city called Tae Baek. When we got our assignments, Pres. Lee told us it is the coldest area in the mission. He wasn't lying. It's freezing here. And to make it worse, there's thermometers around town that keeps reminding you how cold it is. The coldest I've seen it is -13 C. But that doesn't take the wind chill into account. That makes it worse. Tae Baek is about a 4 hour train ride outside of Seoul. Not only is it the coldest area, but it's also the farthest away. It's out in the mountains and country side of Korea. Before my mission, I thought it would be cool to serve out in the country, but I didn't think about serving there in the winter. It's really bringing out my thick Idaho blood. There also aren't very many people here. The population is about 50,000. So it's a pretty small town. Basically everything you image Korea, it's the opposite. It makes street contacting tough. Especially since we can only talk to men and a lot of people have cars here. The branch is really small too. There were ten people at Sacrament meeting yesterday. Plus me and my companion. Apparently that was huge. We have a branch president and my companion is the first councilor and I'm once again the branch pianist. I gave a talk yesterday as well as this other really old guy and my companion. Then after church we worked on the branch records and such for a couple hours. To say the least, it's a tough area. The language is super tough too. I just feel lost and confused everywhere we go. Luckily this is my companion's last transfer, so he speaks Korean really well. It comes in handy. But I kinda feel useless because I don't know what anyone says. Anyway. My companion's name is Elder Rowe. He's from Atlanta. Like I said, he's good at the language and he knows a lot of tricks of the trade. So I'm learning lots from him. Tomorrow we're going to Seoul for the Chinese New Year. I'm really excited for that. We're having mission conference so I'll get to see all my buddies again. I'll have to let you know how that goes. Well that's about all the cool stuff. I did get my luggage a couple days later. That was nice. Except one bag is kinda torn up. Grr. Thanks for the emails. It was nice to hear from home. As far as letters and such go, I guess you just send everything to the mission office still and then the zone leaders get everyone's mail and gives it to them. Also what should I do with my debit card? I told the bank I wouldn't be in Korea until February 12th. Do you think it's ok to use or should I just wait until then? Umm I thought I had another question for you but I can't remember it now. I guess I'll live. Well I'll talk to you next week. Tell everyone hi for me.
Love, Elder Dorius
PS here's a few pictures. One is me at the temple. One is me and my companion making our Chinese New Year gift to the branch members. And the last one is an awesome one from the MTC I thought you might enjoy.  


News of Korea

To those anxiously waiting for news of Korea,
The missionaries have all arrived safely! I was privileged to meet this wonderful group of missionaries as they arrived at the airport. They seemed tired from the long flight but were excited to jump right into the work! I'm sure each one of them will make an irreplaceable contribution to the mission and to God's children here. We thank you for your support and for helping us serve the people of Korea.

Some added information, preparation day here is on Monday,(Sunday in American time). Missionaries will usually email you on that day. Thanks again for all you do to further the work here!

-Elder Dicou
Seoul Mission

서울 선교부 선교사들의 부모님들에게
선교사들은 다 안전히 왔습니다! 제가 공항에서 만났고 그분들은 훌륭하십니다! 우리가 하나님의 자녀로 봉사하면서 많이 도와 주셔서 감사합니다.

그리고, 준비날은 월요일입니다. 그때 선교사가 Email 할수있습니다.

-디코 장로
서울 선교부

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Mission Pictures

We got Elder Dorius's mission pictures back a few days ago and figured you're missing his face and would like to see some pictures! :) So here you go!

Elder Dorius is in Korea!

Elder Dorius left the MTC early yesterday morning and had a long flight ahead of him. 16 hours from Oregon if you can imagine! I sent him a neck pillow and some snacks so hopefully that helped! :) He got to call my mom and dad and they said he sounded great and couldn't wait to get to Korea. I'm sure all those missionaries heading out yesterday had the same excitement Brad expressed! We are just so excited for him and can hardly wait to get some letters from Korea!!!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Travel Plans‏

Hey everyone,
So today is my last P-day at the MTC. I'm pretty stoked. Here's our travel plans. We fly out of Salt Lake Monday morning at 8:40 and we arrive in Portland at 9:49. Then we fly out of Portland at 12:25 and land in Korea 9:30 Tuesday night. We're allowed to call home either from the Salt Lake airport or during our layover. I was just thinking of calling from Portland if that's ok. What do you think? Also what number should I call? Usually the bookstore here has calling cards but they're out right now. They said you can get some at the airport but do you want to send one? Or what do you think? And what should I do with my medications? I have 3 different ones and they're all still pretty full. I have at least one thing I need to send home or have Danielle pick it up. Do you know how she does that? Oh and do you know the address for the mission home in Korea? Because I don't. Haha. But I think the other elders have it. I've been trying to think of anything else I might need but I think I'm good. For now at least. I might need some stuff in a few months if I can't find what I need there. If you think of anything, let me know or just send it.
Yes! You got to try Skin Ramyun! Some of the native elders brought some over with them. It's so good. Kadin you need to learn how to enjoy Korean food. It's so good. I'm way excited to get over there and eat it everyday.
So we have 12 native missionaries here with us right now and on Sunday they did a musical number during Sacrament meeting and also at the MTC fireside. They sang "Because I Have Been Giving Much" in Korean. It was amazing. Koreans love to sing. They sing with a lot of pride (the good kind) and gusto. It was one of the best musical numbers I've ever heard. It was very simple, but very powerful. The Spirit was so strong during the entire song. It just reaffirmed my calling to Korea and how that's where I'm supposed to be. In six days. Woot.
Elder Holland paid us another visit this last week. He basically told us the secret to becoming a successful missionary. It was a good talk to hear right before we go out to the field. Since we've been at the MTC for so long I think all the subjects for the talks are being looped, but it's been good becuase we're reminded of what our purpose is and it just motivates us to work hard and be the best we can be. Oh speaking of missionaries. I've ran into Sister Walter a few times. She seems to be doing well. It's funny to see her and her companion because her companion is at least a good foot shorter than her. At least I think that's her companion. I've also ran into Elder Kaleb Nyggard a few times. He's going to San Antonio Spanish speaking. Our classes are in the same building so we see each other every once in a while. It was nice to see him again.
Well my time is about up. Hopefully I hear from you guys this week. I'm still doing well. I'll TALK to you on Monday.
Love, Elder Dorius

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Two Weeks Notice

Hey everyone,
Alright before I forget, I have a few things I need to tell you guys because I don't have much time left in the MTC and I was just thinking about some things I need before I leave the country. First of all I still need Jeff and Jen's address if you could get that to me. Also if you could put together a photo album that would be nice too. Maybe some pictures of the family and St. George and stuff. I think that would be a good thing to take to Korea. Next you might want to check on my debit/credit card departure date thingy. When I called them I told them I would be in Korea in February, but since I'll be there sooner we might want to let the bank know and possible change that date. Hopefully that makes since. And lastly did you guys disconnect your cell phones and the home phone? Or did I just forget your numbers. We couldn't get a hold of anyone when we were trying to get my insurance information. Luckily I still knew the dental office's number. So if you guys could work on that, I would really appreciate it. If you think of anything else I might need, let me know.
Well I'm kidney stone free. At least I'm pretty sure. It passed yesterday but it wasn't as horrific as everyone makes it seem like. So hopefully I just got lucky and I'm good to go. I have a doctor's appointment this afternoon so I should find out then if it's all good. But yeah I'm healthy and feel great. I love hearing about your guys' Korean girls. Tell the one who has Mrs. Abernathy I'm terribly sorry and I give her all the sympathy in the world. That doesn't sound very fun. She should get in with Mrs. Madden. Is their English good? I wish I was there so I could practice my Korean with them. But we actually have our own Koreans. 11 natives got here last week I think it was. They're so awesome. Koreans are just the best. It's fun to talk with them. They're really helpful with the language. On Saturday at the TRC, we taught the Plan of Salvation in Korean. It's tough. There's so much to that lesson and it's hard to teach it all. Especially with the language barrier. The Plan of Salvation can be hard to teach in English. I like teaching in Korean though. There's been times when I couldn't remember some words and then they just come into my mind. That's the best. The gift of tongues is amazing. There's no way I could be learning as much as I have been without it.
That's cool you guys are learning so much about Korean culture. I actually did know some of those things. I'm so exctited to get to Korea. The more I learn about missionary work, I realize there's so much more to it than just knocking on doors. And there comes a point where you can't continue teaching and learning in a classroom. You just have to get out and do it. Well my time is about up. I'm doing great. Thanks for all the prayers. Talk to you next week.
Love, Elder Dorius

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Good News

Hey everyone,

Sounds like you all had another successful new year's party with the fam. It was kinda weird not being there but I'd rather be here. We didn't do much for new years. It's not quite as fun when you have to go to bed at 10:30. I'm excited to hear about your Korean students. They sound pretty smart and can probably speak English really well. We're getting 11 new Korean native missionaries today. They're awesome. That should be a good experience.

Well I've had a pretty exciting week. We got some pretty good news. First of all I did find my license in the bottom of my stocking. So I did get that. Sorry I didn't respond. I figured if you didn't hear from me you wouldn't do anything and then you'd be out of town. The next good news is we're going to Korea a week early. We're now leaving on January 24. We're stoked! I guess our original departure date was right before Chinese New Year and Korea pretty much shuts down for that. So they didn't want us flying in during that because it would be crazy. I'm pretty sure it's February 3-5 or something like that. Your Korean students might like a party or something around then. The next news is almost as exciting. On Sunday morning at around 5:00, I woke up with some intense pain in my left side. I woke up my companion and we tried to figure out what was wrong. It felt like my insides wanted to be on my outsides. All the elders in my room gave me a blessing an then my companion and I headed to the ER. By the time we got to the ER I had thrown up a couple times and was still in a lot of pain. They asked me to rate my pain and the whole time I was thinking about Brian Regan. "Say eight!" However I didn't take his advice. I said six. Luckily they still took me in. They took me to a little room and I just layed on the bed, thinking I was going to die. Then a nurse came in and hooked me up to an IV and shot some morphine in me. It was the best. Everyone needs a shot of morphine sometime in their life. But because I was on that, my oxygen levels started to drop so I got to have oxygen too. Then a doctor came in and talked to me for a bit. He told me my symptoms looked like I had a kidney stone. So they did a CT scan and sure enough. I had a kidney stone. I still have a kidney stone. They said it's not too big so it should pass on it's own, but it hasn't yet. They gave me percocet for the pain and some other medicine for the nausea. I'm doing fine now. The pain is gone and I feel a lot better. I'm seeing the MTC doctor this morning so we'll see what he has to say. Everyone has been really nice and concerned. My district has some good kidney stone jokes now. So don't be alarmed. I'm in good hands. Oh quick side note. Do I have an insurance card? Or what do you know about that? I'm supposed to call the billing office to get some information. I don't really know how all this works. I heard the MTC covers the costs but they might need my insurance information. I don't know. I'll figure it out. So yeah that was my week. It was pretty exciting. Hopefully this week is boring. I'll keep you updated though. Have fun going back to work and school!

Love, Elder Dorius