Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Week 4

(this is posted late due to technical problems...)

Hello from the MTC! (still....)

I'm doing great here! I'm hoping to get addresses so I can write letters while on my mission. (email is limited). I'm still learning way more Korean than my brain can handle, but I've been amazed at how the Lord has strenghthened my fellow missionaries and me. We are learning more and working harder here than I think we could anywhere else/at any other time in our lives.

The koo-yoke (district) that got here 6 weeks before us is leaving next week and got their flight plans. It makes it so much more real for rookies like me.

I can't wait to get out and share the good news of Christ's gospel wi th the Koreans, and that is partly what keeps me going on tough days. I'm very strengthened by communication with my family and friends. Thank you for your letters and encouragement!

I have to sign off now. I'm happy to be able to share a little bit about my experiences here on the mish!

Elder Bocchino

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Week 3 in the MTC

(To everyone)
Hey I'm doing great! Still learning Korean (Han-goo-marr) at a fast pace! I still feel like I know more Spanish than Korean (probably because I do). The days are long, the food is so-so, and the language is hard, but I'm so excited to be here! I've come to be so much more thankful for the friends and family who have supported me and prepared me to enter into the world and invite others to come unto Christ. I've been here for three weeks....so I have about 9 left. I'm excited to get out to Korea and start working! I love you all and keep you in my thoughts and prayers!

Elder Joshua Bocchino

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Week 2 in the MTC

Greetings from the Mission Training Center!

I'm doing very well here at the MTC. The food is tolerable and my companion is a great Elder. Those are the two main priorities anyway. :)

I'm learning Korean at a rapid pace and I love it (I'm able to read it and make short statements). It's very challenging but will be rewarding when I'm able to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ to my Korean brothers and sisters in their native tongue. I can see truth in the old missionary joke: English speaking missionaries return as masters of the doctrine. Spanish speaking missionaries return as masters of the doctrine. Asian speaking missionaries return....................................just humbled. :)

I'm racing against the clock here so I'll have to close. Let me just say that I love getting letters from friends and family. It's hard to communicate via email since I have limited time, but DearElder.com has an amazing free service to send letters to the MTC.

I'm excited to be serving the Lord and I wish you all well. I hope to hear from you as I share with you some of my adventures over the next few years.

With love, Elder Bocchino

Monday, August 4, 2008

My snail-mail address at the MTC (until Oct. 13, 2008) is:

Elder Joshua Bocchino
MTC Mailbox #212
KOR-BUS 1013
2005 N. 900 E.
Provo, Utah 84604-1793

The use of the above address on all correspondence will greatly facilitate delivery of your mail to me at the MTC. All missionary mail must come through the US Mail or commercial delivery services (hand delivered items are not accepted - pizzas, fast food, items needing refrigeration or anything perishable will not be accepted). Anyone who spent longer than a minute in my room back home will understand the incredible foresight and wisdom of this rule.

Telephone calls cannot be accepted in the MTC.

I will write as soon as possible and post to this blog, so watch for updates.

DearElder.com is a website that provides a free account for delivering email to missionaries on the same day you submit them, at no charge. You can check it out online.

Joshua has a new email address at the MTC: joshua.j.bocchino@myldsmail.net

He writes: (Aug. 5, 2008)

I'm doing great! The MTC is an interesting experience........we don't have any time to do what we need to and I'm always tired. Other than that, I'm loving it! By the way, if you go to DearElder.com, you guys can type a message and it can be sent to me in letter form the same day, as long as you do it before noon. My P-day is Tuesday, so expect emails on Tuesdays.

After our goodbye they didn't give us a break. I met my companion (Elder Heaton) and my roommates (Elders Anderson and Singleton). They're all great guys and we get along so well. Our room is pretty much the best in the whole place. We've been so busy for the past few days. Our days are consumed in meetings and hours upon hours of classroom instruction. Much of our personal and companion study time is taken up with gospel studies.

I'm also learning Korean (pronounced Han-gurr). It is pretty much the craziest language I've ever seen. We learned the alphabet the first day we began studying. It's not too bad since it's phoenetic. I can read it fairly easily, though I can't understand what 99% of it means right now. I'm also learning vocab and grammar so I can introduce myself, bear simple testimony of truth, say simple prayers and use other random words mixed with english. We're supposed to SYL (speak your language) so we substitue any Korean words we know for their english counterparts. (Companion is dong-pan-ja, milk is ooo-yoo, thank you is kamsahamnida, prayer is kido, etc.) The other missionaries laugh at us sometimes :). So pretty much my three years of Spanish are messing me up as I try to learn Korean. I had heard that when you know/have studied two languages, when you go to learn a third it brings your second to remembrance. We're all having problems with that as sometimes we think of a Spanish word before the Korean equivalent.

I decided Koreans are weird. A typical Korean joke, for example: "There are two people. One dies but you wouldn't even know because the food is so good." What just happened? Also, I think I'll be sleeping on a pad on the floor in Korea. I'll also be dripping with sweat all the time (so I heard). Apparently Jejudo Island is the place to be in the Pusan mission. So many missionaries in this batch are going to Pusan....I'm so excited.

The Spirit of the Lord is strong here in the MTC, as all Elders and Sisters here study diligently in preparation to bring the Gospel of Jesus Christ to our brothers and sisters around the world. I have a stronger testimony of being strengthened and directed by the Lord since coming here, as I have felt His Spirit influence my life. I know that God is our loving Heavenly Father and that He loves His children, wherever they may be. I know that the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored to the earth and that it is only through Christ, who has the power to save, that we may return to live with our Heavenly Father in eternity. I've known these things all my life, but my testimony of them has already grown and deepened as I have felt the Spirit in my life almost 24/7. I know that what I am doing is right and I can't wait to share this glad message with my brothers and sisters in Korea!!!!

This is my email: joshua.j.bocchino@myldsmail.net Mom, if you could put that on the blog, along w/ my mtc address, that would be great!Remember, "there are no homesick missionaries in the baptismal font" - pres boone.

Love, Elder Bocchino