Sunday, September 13, 2009

Finding a Belief

A very fun week in Gyeongju. I'm tired. lol

We made quite a few hitchhiking trips out into the boonies looking for church members. Our journeys took us to government offices where the workers initially refused to help us. However, one man at the computer recognized one of the names on the paper we gave him and decided to help us. He then gave us names of workers at the other offices we were visiting who were his friends and who would help us. The rest of the day went very well. This week we were able to turn in between 15 and 20 names of church members who had moved and whose records we could send off to Seoul. Great week.

That same day, we hitchhiked through some beautiful mountains to a tiny town called San-nae-myeon. We visited the government office with no issues, then found ourselves wandering towards a beautiful waterfall coming out of the side of a mountain (the first I've seen in Korea, I think). A man wandered up to me and began explaining how the waterfall works (water is pumped up the mountain). I told him that it was beautiful, and boy did he like that! He grabbed my arm and took Elder Green and me to a shack/tent thing where people were sitting drinking alcohol. He sat us down, bought us a pineapple Fanta soda, and introduced us to a University President who was visiting his hometown of San-nae-myeon. Apparently, this man who was treating us to the Fanta was the "town mayor" of sorts in this little mountain village. The waterfall was his special government project, and he was very pleased that we liked it. Talk about having friends in high places eh? The MAYOR of San-nae-myeon...population 45...or something... We drank our soda and went on our way back to Gyeongju.

We hitchhiked down to another town earlier in the week and talked with a Catholic gentleman, who gave us a lift, about prophets and the need for a restoration of Christ's church after the death of the Apostles. Interesting discussion.

We were in the Post Office and began talking to a lady who said she wanted a belief. She sent her children to church because she wanted them to be good people, but she and her husband had no religion. We explained the Book of Mormon, the restoration of Christ's gospel, and the opportunity to know truth through study and prayer. She liked it but seemed a little dismissive of the "pray and you'll find truth" talk. I asked, "Why do you want a belief, anyways?" She stumbled over a few words and then laughed and said that I had asked a good question. I then testified of the Book of Mormon and told her getting a belief or knowing God's truth isn't easy. She would have to work for it. She reminded me of the Doctrine and Covenants scripture of those who are kept from the truth because they know not where to find it. I look forward to meeting her again.

A church member told us to visit his non-Mormon father in his shop by the downtown area of the city. We did. The father is very nice and is good at speaking English. We talked a lot about religion and he taught us about Shamanism. (Korean traditional before Buddhism). Nice man.

Well, knowing truth isn't easy! As we study, ponder and pray, we can be touched by God's spirit, our minds can be opened and our hearts touched, and we can receive heavenly instruction. A boy named Joseph Smith did this in 1820, leading to the restoration of Christ's full gospel in these days. Millions of people are doing this around the world today and are taking part in the "marvelous work and a wonder" which prophets have prophesied about. The heavens are NOT closed, God is our Father, revelation is real.

The Church is true.

Love you! Elder Bocchino

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