Monday, August 2, 2010


im emailing on a train and the time is running low so as usual i have to be fast. i had an awesome week last. one of our investigators had a baptism interveiw and is scheduled to be baptized on the 7th! he's in college and is studying music here in daegu. im really excited for him. we had a good meeting with him and the bishop and he talked about how he found out the church is true. it was a cool. i have to go but that was the highlight of the week.

elder wells

Monday, July 19, 2010

More Americans

this week was a little better here in daegu because the rainy season started so it wasnt too hot but still really really sticky and humid. on days that it doesnt rain we sweat a lot because of the humidity. even when we are in the shade we just continue to sweat, its crazy. i think im getting better at english because this week at church i was actually able to interact with the foreigners a little. last week a girl in the foreign branch brought her two friends to church and they invited us over to there house last night to learn about the church. her friends are a husband and wife that have been married for a year and are expecting a baby. they have a christian background and are really curious about 'what makes mormons different'. my companion and i had a lot of fun getting to know them and telling them stories about korea. we were shocked to see american food at their house and they were shocked that we dont have access to american food like they do (they are in the military and get american food on the base) and offered to take us to the base to eat taco bell or subway. i got so excited because i really miss american food. i told them that i hadnt eaten american food like that in 2 years and they started packing up doritos, cake, and cereal for us to take home. so nice. we struggled a little to teach about the church in english but the spirit was strong and we were able to teach a solid first lesson. i felt like the spirit was edifying all of us and was teaching us as we taught. i am in awe of the restoration and know that it is the only possible way that God could restore the full gospel to the earth. its so amazing.

-Elder Wells

Monday, July 12, 2010

Speaking English was weird!

so i think i mentioned this last week but i have officially entered my last transfer and got moved to a new area. i was kind of sad at first because there just isnt enough time to get to know people here before i go but at the same time i feel like im here for a reason and am excited to serve in the ward that im in. the city im in is called dae-gu and we are over a big korean ward and a small american military branch. i went to church in english yesterday for the first time in 2 years and it was really weird. they had me introduce myself (in english) and i had no idea what to say. i tried to tell a story about my mission but it was really hard to explain. then i went to talk to people and im not sure if it was because everyone was a big military general or because i forgot how to socialize with americans but i felt really uncomfortable. hopefully things will get better and i'll be able to practice speaking with americans before i got back to the US.

Elder wells

Sunday, July 4, 2010

It's been a while...

hey its been a while since ive written, sorry about that. ive just been caught up in a few things here. i got a call last week that im getting transfered so that was kind of sad. i kind of like transfers though because it allows me to sit back and look at the things that ive learned in the area. in this last area i learned a lot about patience, faith, and hope. i would have to say that the scripture of this transfer is definately ether 12:4. it talks about the hope we can have if we believe in God. i know that if we truly believe in God we can have faith that the future will be better than the past and can hope for a better world and life.

elder wells

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Letter to Mak - Finals!

hey MAKKK!

howwww areeee youuuuu? i heard that you have finals next week. thats a bummer. have you been studying hard? you would be shocked how much koreans study. like everyday until midnight! then they go home, sleep, and do the same thing the next day. and they all wear high school uniforms. i feel bad for them.

anyway, because education is really important in korea im always thinking about how school and church are similar. for example today i was studying the general conference talk by elder Oaks about priesthood blessings and theres a quote from brigham young that says we shouldnt ask for blessings unless we take medicine and do all that we can to get better. he said that its like praying for wheat and corn to grow without planting seeds. since we dont have farms nowadays i related it to school. . we can pray and ask for help on tests but we need to do all that we can by studying hard in order to get all of the blessings. then you can pray and ask heavenly father for help in remembering the things that you studied. i know that if you study with that attitude, Heavenly Father will help you.

mak, you're awesome. cant wait to see you in a few weeks.

elder wells

Monday, June 14, 2010

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Joseph Smith movie

we had another pretty good week here in ulsan. we've been trying to get the ward activated in missionary work more so we planned to have a fireside and watch the Joseph Smith prophet of the Restoration movie but instead of doing a big fireside we watched it for the 3 hour of church on sunday. it was a good opportunity to go around and invite investigators and less active members to come out to church and we actually had some success. a less active family came and were immediately fellowshipped by a lot of the members.
watching the movie brought back memories of seeing it in Salt Lake and in the mtc and also reminded me of how faithful the saints were even with all of the opposition they faced. the members here really liked it and i think they can relate to it because its not very easy to be a member of the church in korea either. most of the members here are first or second generation saints just like the pioneers and struggle to give up their 'lifestyles' to obey the commandments of God. i am amazed everyday at how faith motivates us to do such challenging things.

elder wells

Thursday, May 20, 2010

good week

we had a good week this week. the keyboard is kind of broken so i cant type a lot but heres some things we did this week.

friday we visited the ulsan district president at his robot 'academy'. there are millions of 'academies' in korea that kids go to after school and study at. they started to help kids study more and do better in school but everyone started going to them and they've become more important than school in some places. i feel bad for the kids in korea because they go to school and then have to go to these academies all day, sometimes until midnight. it also makes it hard for us to meet with younger investigators because they have no free time.
we also had a lot of success prosyliting at a nearby college but havent been able to meet with any of the people we talked with. its easy to get phone numbers from people, especially students but they never seem to have time to meet with us. one of our goals is to show the people how important this message is to them so that they want to meet with us again.
on sunday we ate dinner with a part member family and talked about how we could help make the father an investigator. the wife and kids want the dad to be baptized really bad and they set a baptismal date for him every year on his birthday but he isnt interested yet. i was moved by the wife's faith and how she has been able to raise her children in the church without her fathers help. they're awesome family.
this keyboard isnt cooperation so i'll end it with that.
the church is true

elder wells

Friday, April 30, 2010

a week of 소개's

you probably cant read the title of this email but it says a week of 'so gay's' which means refferrals. we were really blessed this week to be able to find some potential investigators through working with members. the theme for our mission this transfer is to the rescue and we are learning how to be able to work with members. the stakes here have all be informed about president Monsons 'to the rescue' program and we have been trying to work with members to find people to teach. the program just started and im sure it will take a while before it has an effect but we have already been able to see some good results. yesterday we visited a less active guy at his 'english academy' and he introduced us to his nephew. it was a cool opportunity to share the gospel. i know that the Lord is preparing people for us to teach and that the best way is through the members.

elder wells

My Mission

I feel like my mission has changed a lot in the last few weeks. the reality that i'll be going home soon is starting to kick in and all of a sudden i have to prepare for change. i've loved being here in Korea and wish that i could just stay here for another six months or so but i know that change is a good thing. on my mission i've learned a lot about faith and that it is trusting that the Lord will provide for us. if we truly have faith and hope, we dont have to be afraid of the future because we know that there will always be something better up ahead. we can nourish this hope during our lives through our successes and failures. in the end we should have a hope in the resurrection of Jesus Christ and in the knowledge that we will be able to return to Heavenly Father. i know that this hope will give us the strength we need to keep on pushing even when times are hard.

-Elder Wells

More Changes

well i've been in the city of ulsan for a little over a month now and just when i was getting used to things, my companion, elder matsuura, got transfered. he is going to another big city and my new companion is once again korean. ive known him since the beginning of my mission and we get along really well so im excited. it was sad to see elder mastuura go though. we had a good transfer together and did a lot of fun things like eat raw whale meat and stuff. i'll try to attach a picture.

we dont have many investigators but the ones we have are doing good. one of them, named yang sun oak, is really awesome. she reads the book of mormon a lot and has really good questions. last week she asked us about the gold plates and why God doesnt just let us have them as proof of the book of mormon. we taught her about faith and how we have to believe without needing to see and if we do we'll recieve a witness from the holy ghost, which is a stronger witness than seeing the plates, she understood well and has a desire to believe. her question made me think about Heavenly Father and the proof he has given us about the book of mormon. it reminds me of a conversation i had with elder procuniar in the mtc because he was saying how perfect the book of mormon is. man can't prove it to be true or false. its impossible. the only way to know if the book of mormon is true or not is to read and pray about it. it really is amazing how no matter what people do to prove the book of mormon to be true or false, it can't be done. i know that this is because the book is from a loving Heavenly Father that wants us to read it and pray about it. when we do we will not only find out that it is true but we'll also learn about our Father in heaven and be able to make a relationship with him.

elder wells
ps check out the meat to blubber ratio on the whale meat

the guy in picture 128 is one of my favorite members in Korea. he was in my last area, po hang but i still see him because hes second councilor in the district presidency. does he look like dad to you? i think he looks exactly like dad, just korean version. he kind of acts like dad too.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Spring Cleaning

Im getting used to the area im in now. i know how to get from our house to the church at least. one thing thats hard about transfering is learning names of the members in the new area. each korean name is like a vocabulary word that i have to memorize and put a face with; and when theres 80 active members it can take a lot of time. so far i have the ward mission leader and bishoprics' names down.

we had a good zone conference on monday about spring and spring cleaning. the AP's talked about how spring represents a new start or rebirth and how we can become cleaner by 'polishing' our skills as missionaries. president Jennings also gave a good talk about cleaning and how when we clean there are four things that we focus on. they are the things we throw out, the things we change, the things we keep and the things we need to buy/acquire.
he went on to say that as missionaries and children of Heavenly Father we need to throw out the things that keep us from coming closer to Him.
for things that we need to change he talked about repentance and how it is a change for the better. as we throw away our sins or bad habits, we change for the better and become clean through the atonement of Christ.
he also talked about the things to keep which includes the spiritual gifts that we've aqcuired and the desire to serve. and then he ended with things to obtain on our missions. i've had a while to reflect on the things that i've gained/learned on my mission and realized that ive learned a lot but theres still a lot more that i need to learn before i go home.

i've got to go to a whale musem. talk to you later.

elder wells

Saturday, March 13, 2010

The Way to Salvation

its been a while since ive had time to sit down and write out an email. i had to make a new gmail account one week and i got transfered last week. the branch im in now is a little bigger and im excited about it. if everything works out, i could be here until i go home in august. as i missionary ive learned to deal with change but i still don't like it. i miss my last area and my greenie.

the city im now in is a lot bigger. i get lost a lot and have to really rely on my companion. its called ulsan and its to the northeast of busan. i guess the only thing special about it really is that it has a huge hyundai factory and a bunch of other factories. so a good majority if the men we meet on the street work for hyundai. oh another cool thing is that theres whale restraunts here so ive made it a goal to eat whale before i leave.

the investigator situation isn't very good here so we called up some former investigators and met one of them yesterday. he was a nice older man that learned a lot from the missionaries but wouldnt give up his beliefs about buddhism or come to church. we talked a lot and explained the importance of a true religion. most buddhists in Korea are really peaceful people that think that having a belief is good, no matter what kind of belief it is. its hard to show them that religion isn't just a way to live a better life, its the process of salvation. we testified of Christ as our savior and explained how his gospel is the path that leads to salvation. our investigator took it pretty well but was still confident in his own beleifs.
i learned a lot yesterday about my purpose as a missionary and the importance of this message. im not here just to baptize people, increase the membership of the church or to show them how to live their lives; im here to teach people about the way to recieve salvation. i know its the only way to return to our Heavenly Father and i love sharing it with the people of Korea.

elder wells

transfer, new responsibilities

im only on today for like 10 minutes because i got transfered...i left my greenie and probably my favorite area. im with a realy cool companion and good area so its not too bad.

im pretty positive im going home in august.

we dont get to go to the seoul temple during our mission. the only time we can go is the week we go home we take a train from busan to soul and go to the temple. im excited to go in august.

my 'kid' is doing good, he got sick last week but is doing better. im really going to miss him but im his zone leader now so i can call him whenever i want.

i have pictures to download but i dont have my camera right now so i'll do it next week.

im doing really really good. im as happy as ive been on my mission and things are starting to make sense/work out. like the language and stuff. i am really tired though. i think my face has lost a lot of color and im just not as 'spunky' as i used to be. i think its because of the work and a little because of the korean culture too. everything is about respect and humility and it has 'mellowed me out'. my new companion has a lot of energy though so it should 'wake me up'.

im not getting a new mission president but i heard the seoul west mission is getting shut down in july so there will only be 3 missions in korea. it doesnt effect our mission at all.

i dont have time to write a big email but tell everyone i said hi. thanks for asking questions, i like answering them.

Elder Wells

Monday, March 1, 2010

20 Lessons

this week was pretty awesome too. we have been working closely with our ward mission leader, brother olson, and he is helping us out a lot. we try to teach a lesson at his house every week and on tuesday when our investigator 'punked' us we taught a practice lesson to him and his family.
last saturday through monday was a holiday in korea called soular. im not sure but maybe its the chinese new year? anyway we had pday on monday and just have time today to email. we were busy during the holiday and had two appointments sunday night so we did splits with brother olson and our branch president. i got to go with the branch president and have dinner with a less active family. it was kind of a surprise to see how many missionary rules the branch president didnt know about. i also got a taste of how much freedom normal people have compared to missionaries. wow. it was a good learning experience for both of us. the splits was fun and i hope we are busy enough to do it again sometime.
our branch is a little behind but we are trying to put into practice the 'to the rescue' program where the ward selects families for the missionaries to teach. we dont normally teach 20 lessons in a week so our mission has included a new stat to give missionaries 20 teaching opportunities. the new stat is lessons taught to a member. this is usually done at the end of a dinner appointment or just a quick visit during the week. we have a plan to teach 20 lessons this week including lessons to a member and are a little behind but might be able to do it. if not, we plan on teaching 20 lessons next week for sure. i never thought 20 lessons in a week would be possible but we are receiving a lot of help from the ward members and the Lord.
gotta go.

elder wells

Email from my kids dad

Dear Elder Wells,

I am Brother Hyun Seog Cho, who is Elder Cho's father. I heard from Sister Olson and President Jennings that you are one of the best missionaries. When I heard that you would be my son's trainer, I was very glad and happy.

As a father, I know that Elder Cho will need your many helps on almost everything he does as a new full-time missionary. However, I believe that you will be the best to help him to be improved as a successful missionary as you are.

In my personal and family prayers, praying for your success is included, please know. I love you as much as I do my son, because you are my son's Companion.

Best Regards,

Hyun Seog Cho

Miracle after miracle

This last week was one of the most amazing weeks i've had on my mission. everything we planned worked out and we are starting to see results. on sunday we had 2 investigators come to church along with friends of other members. We spent the majority of the day in the church teaching lessons to potential investigators, investigators, new members, and less actives. then we went straight from the church to a dinner appointment where we taught another investigator and watched the restoration dvd. since then we have been using every resource we can to teach these people during the week. most of our investigators are in school and because of the schooling here they study until 10pm so they have no time to meet during the week but they found a time to meet with us on monday. amazing. we also found an old investigator and had an awesome lesson with her and 2 sister from the relief society. the investigator was really open and told us that her family dropped the missionaries because she felt that if she joined our church she would lose friendships and be treated differently by people in her appartment complex. one of the members with us (a convert) said that she felt the exact same pressure and was able to overcome it by joining the church with her husband and family. she said that no other relationship was more important than her family and testified that as a family they could overcome those fears and come to church. the investigators husband has interest too so we hope that this family will continue to meet with us and have the courage to come unto Christ. They seem really prepared to here this message.
the next miracle happened last night when we went to go teach two boys the new member lessons. the kids' father is less active and the mom isnt a member so we've only been able to meet the boys at church. we decided to visit them without making an appointment and when we got there the non member mother welcomed us in, talked for a while and listened to our lesson on Heavenly Father and families. she told us to come back next week and is now a new investigator. it couldn't have been more perfect. i really have seen the Lord's hand in this work and can testify that he prepares people to receive this message. i love the Lord, the work, and the people of Korea.

Elder Wells

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

General Conference

I was thinking about what to write in my email today and the only thing i could think about was the november liahona/ensign about general conference. there was a shortage of the english version in our mission so i didnt get a copy. i tried my hardest to study the words of the prophets by reading the korean version with a dictionary next to me but it was really really hard. i started in November and made it through the priesthood session a few weeks ago. i finally decided to order the 1$ english version and have been studying it recently. im grateful for the opportunity to read the prophet's council in my own language and i know that they speak the words of our loving Heavenly Father.

Elder Wells

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Broken Rice Cooker

Bcc: weston Wells
Date: 01/28/10 03:20 am
Subject: broken rice cooker

ive officially been with my greenie for a week and things are going great. we're having fun and working hard. i try to set a good example for him but its hard because i still feel like a greenie in his culture. he shows me how to live like a korean and im grateful for his patience. he has to deal with my weaknesses and sometimes i feel bad for him. for example, i felt bad the other day because i broke our rice cooker. what happened was i wanted to bake a cake and since our little appartment doesnt have an oven, the only way to accomplish the task was to test out the rice cooker. i had heard of other missionaries doing it so it seemed like a fool proof method. i prepared the batter and started the rice cooker but it stopped about 10 minutes after it started. the cake wasnt even close to being done and i couldnt get the button to stay down so i jammed a spoon into the side to keep the button down. about 20 minutes later i checked the cake and it was totally burned. like the whole thing was black. i guess the rice cooker got too hot in the process and broke...oops.
um besides that, we had a lot of sucess this week on the street talking to people. we gave out a lot of book of mormons and taught a few quick lessons. it is awesome to share the message of the restoration and watch the different responses people have to it. i know the Lord is preparing them to hear this message and im grateful that i can be the one to share it.

Elder Wells

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

a new change

it was another good but crazy week here in pohang. we got transfer phone calls last friday and my korean companion that i've served with for 6 months got transfered to busan. it was sad to see him go. after he got the call i waited for about a half hour to find out who my new companion would be. i was really nervous about my new companion because life was good with elder jin and change isn't always easy. i expected my new companion to call me but instead i got a call from president jennings saying that im training. so yesterday i went down to busan and picked up my new greenie! oh and of course, like most of my companions, he's korean. his name is jo one tay and he's from seoul. its hard to explain but just looking at him makes me laugh. he has no idea whats going on most of the time and has to ask me questions about everything. training him will be really fun.
as for the rest of my week, it was really good. we had a lesson with the daughter of our part member family and it went well. she is reading the book of mormon and said she'd come to church. very exciting.
welp, i have to go. this work is amazing, i know its true and im grateful i can do it.

elder wells

the blessings begin

the new year blessings are already starting to come here in po hong. this week we found a new investigator! its actually the daughter of one of the member families in our branch. the daughters didnt get baptized when she was young because she heard bad things about the church from her flute teacher. she's now 22 and has had no desire to come to church or learn about the gospel even though the rest of the family is active. im not sure whats changed but she has accepted to take the lessons from the missionaries so we started teaching her on saturday. even though her parents are members, she knows little about the church and hasn't shown a lot of desire to learn. her parents said that the fact that she accepted to meet the missionaries is a success in itself. so we taught a lesson about the restoration and stressed the importance of our message. i have faith that this girl will grow as she accepts our commitments and continues to learn.

i also ate lobster this week. its not so good with kimchi..
elder wells

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Receive many New Years Blessings

its been a while since i emailed last because my p day changed to thursday. i kind of liked the monday p day schedule but we'll see how thursday goes.
i hope everyone had a good and safe new year. i remember as a teenager going to dances and counting down the seconds until the new year. i thought about waiting up until midnight but i would have had to have done it alone because my companion is korean and they dont do that here. instead they wake up early in the morning and watch the sun rise (its called the welcoming of the sun). the area im in right now is the best place to do it in korea because its the eastern tip and the first to see the sun come up. so we woke up early on new years day and 'welcomed the sun' with the youth in our branch. it was a really cool expirience. koreans look forward to the new year and welcome it with the concept that it will bring blessings to their lives. instead of saying happy new year they say 'receive many new years blessings' to each other. in testimony meeting as well, many members expressed their excitement for the new year by saying that they wonder what kind of blessings heavenly Father will bless their family with this year. i really like the idea of welcoming the new year and seeing it as an opportunity to receive blessings and think positively about the future. it helped me think about my goals for 2010 and ask for Heavenly Fathers help in achieving them. as i reflect on 2009 i can see countless blessings and know that the gospel with bring even more blessings in the year 2010. it is my prayer that as we live the gospel, we'll receive all the blessings Heavenly Father has in store for us.

Elder Wells

a "white Christmas"

This last week was a week full of gratitude, love, and service. we were really busy helping people, especially members, during the christmas season. we also had the opportunity to spend christmas eve with an american family in our branch and thus the title white christmas. no it didnt snow...we ate dinner at their house and then acted out the birth of the Savior while reading Luke 2. it didnt compare with the follow the star performance that our ward does every year but it got me into the christmas spirit. the next day, christmas, i got to talk to the family which was great. we then spent the whole day setting up for a branch christmas party. the branch asked me weeks in advance to be santa claus and of course i accepted. the strange thing was that people continued to ask me and confirm that i would be santa for the party. i was a little confused because i didnt think it was a big deal but i soon figured out why they kept asking me and preventing me from backing out of it.
as santa i made my entrance into the party and was immediately trampled by a stampede of kids. they tried to take me down and steal my beard. luckily with the help of my companion we fought them off and i was able to call out the kids names and give them presents. the kids knew that i was one of the missionaries so it kind of ruined the fun. if i would have known all of this was going to happen i might have turned down the opportunity to be santa...

another highlight of the week was a referral we got from this same american family. they speak korean and actually have quite a few korean friends outside of the church. they invited a family they know over for dinner and had us come to. after introducing us as missionaries of the church we were able to talk to them while eating dinner and actually taught them most of the restoration. it was one of the most solid referrals i have ever gotten. i imagine that this is the most effective way to introduce neighbors and close friends to the church.
the father has a lot of interest in the church so we invited him to come to church next week and he said he would. we are praying that everything will work out and have faith that the Lord will prepare this family for baptism.