Hello dearest family!
I don't have as much time today but it was a fantastic fun filled adventure :) Whew, I can't wait to show you the pictures, but I think pictures will have to wait until next week because they take a little longer to send. Ok, no time, but long story short: went hiking, which means we biked a long time to go hiking for an hour--but it was great. I am not in shape. I thought I was, but I am not. But I feel very accomplished because we biked up a mountain except for the last km where someone gave us a ride (but we did end up running back down to our bikes after) All together our member friend who went with us said it was total 50km from our house, up the mountain and back :) Whew, I am tired. Uphill is hard. I'm not so sure anymore that I can do triathalons with dad and austin....
But, the most exciting event this week was on Sat, our baptism! That was one of the most spiritual baptisms I have ever attended. Haha, first of all we were a little late getting to the church that day, but when we rushed into the church there were are cute little soon to be members sitting all together on the couches, anxiously awaiting their baptism :) Yang mama, whose real name is lin xing zi (every woman uses their own name but if you want to mention someone's wife or mom you use the dad's family name) she had the most wonderful experience and was so moved at the end of her baptism that while she was giving her share at the end she said she was just so thankful for all of us and kept hugging and kissing us during and after her baptism, she is such a cutie and such a gem. She also talked about how she had felt dead for the past 20 years and through the gospel, through the change that has taken place, the gospel means so much to her. The twins also got baptized that day, remember them :) Wow, they are amazing. They were so nervous about the baptism and so nervous about having to do it twice :) but they were fantastic and it was just the most wonderful experience to hear their testimonies after and hear their experiences with the Book of Mormon and see how much they have changed over the past weeks. Both of them had different experiences where they prayed and read the Book of Mormon and found their answer that they needed to be baptized. They were so gan dong, I don't know how to say it in english....moved? so moved? yes, but the most wonderful thing is that they are really converted and have a testimony of the Book of Mormon and this gospel, and that will help them get through the good times and the not so good times. I just can't say this enough times, a testimony of the Book of Mormon is far beyond essential. Nothing beats a personal witness from reading the Book of Mormon, members included. We all need to continue to read and to continue to pray about.
Ok, but honestly, did you all have a special missionary fast, or have been praying for missionarys 24-7? Wow, there are so many blessings and so many beautiful miracles we have been able to see the past couple weeks and miracles that are to come. It really is such a blessing to be here. During the middle of the twins' share at their baptism I had a moment where I just sat that and felt the spirit from their testimonies and was so thankful for the opportunity to be a missionary. This is why everything is worth it. Every long day, or hard day, the day you get rejected more times than you think you can handle---it's all worth it. I am able to help people be baptized and be able to live with their Heavenly Father again, these girls know about their Heavenly Father and their Savior. They will be happier because of the gospel, not just now, but forever. I wish you could be here and see their faces, watch the change that takes place. Nothing compares.
Yes, baptism is fantastic, and language, yes it is coming along. I know i am improving, but it's funny because people keep telling me how much i have improved and how they can actually understand me now so i wonder what i sounded like before :) love you!
Thank you so much for your prayers, let everyone know they really are felt and really are causing so much success in this area.
I love you so much!
-Sister Allison Ko