Monday, November 23, 2015

Do What You Say

November 23, 2015

Buen Dia!
Elder Burke, Celene, Angelica, Elder Montero, Joaquin
So anyways, this last Monday after writing you guys we went to say goodbye to Celene, the 9 year old super member missionary that we had.  She went to Buenos Aires and will be there for the summer until March.  We are gonna miss her because she was always helping us with teaching her friends and family.  She’s a huge role model for us and she will definitely be a great missionary someday when she is older.  I cooked brownies and Angelica, the Aunt of Celene, cooked little pizzas.  We taught the Plan of salvation using little drawings since there were more little kids. It was fun.

Elders Burke, Pace, Mostoller, Gowans
Back together again (MTC district)
We went to Resistencia for our Multi Zone Conference with Pres. Franco, Hermana Franco, and The Assistants to the Pres.  It was really great and as we were talking about faith and setting goals, I shared an experience of how when Elder Nava and I made the goal to add three priesthood holders to the branch, and we had the baptism of Juan Romero and Pedro Pimienta. But he and I left without a third.  But, I returned to find out that one of the members that we were working to reactivate (Jorge Gomez) was reactivated and just the past week he was sealed for time and all eternity to his wife Dalma!  They’re my best friends here and we have so much fun spending time with one another and helping them with whatever they need.  Also they enjoy taking a lot of pictures so I can imagine that if you look on Facebook I’ll probably be there in their posts! ja ja.  But anyways President Franco said that by my return to Corrientes it could be that I will be there for a little bit more time! ja ja  Everyone was laughing and I was pretty content with staying here, there is a lot of work to do.  But I got to see Elder Pace, Elder Mostoller, and Elder Gowans from my MTC district!  It was like a family reunion!  Also I got to see my two favorite Peruanas together before one of them left, Hermana Paima and Lanfranco. Hermana Lanfranco will be leaving.  It’s pretty nuts now that I’m losing even more friends.  I’m one of the oldest Elders now here in the mission.
Elder Burke with Hermanas Lanfranco and Paima

The only problem is finding these people at their house in the area.  It gets hard here in the mission when you and your companion are they only ones who are remembering the appointments we make.  We call them too and confirm with them that we will be passing by, but they are always forgetting.

When you say that you will do something, do it.  Be a man/woman of your word.  God wants us to be on one side and stay there, not be line crossers and oath breakers.  He has us make covenants so that we may be like him.  It’s very true that what it says in D&C 58:30-33
30 Who am I that made man, saith the Lord, that will hold him guiltless that obeys not my commandments?
31 Who am I, saith the Lord, that have promised and have not fulfilled?
32 I command and men obey not; I revoke and they receive not the blessing.
33 Then they say in their hearts: This is not the work of the Lord, for his promises are not fulfilled. But wo unto such, for their reward lurketh beneath, and not from above.
God gives us blessings when we obey and He always will bless us, so why doubt?  We constantly think that if we don’t receive blessing its God’s fault and not ours.  But God will always fulfill His part if we will do our part.  So the purpose of a Covenant is that we may be men/women of our word and that we do what is right even if it is hard and stick to it.  It’s not easy, but the blessings are worth it.  So as you can see, when we are talking about making commitments, it gets hard because we were super excited for this Sunday for investigators to come but no one came.  It gets hard sometimes, but you worry about the people as well.

Matias is almost there.  The only thing now is that he can recognize his answer and make the decision to be baptized.  We had a really good lesson where we helped him understand more about Joseph Smith through the Bible and the Great Apostasy that was prophesied and then fulfilled, making the need for the restoration.  He seems so very confused by other church doctrine but by following the spirit and bearing testimony we were able to help him see the light.  Now he has to continue trying.  We keep trying to convince him, but something that I have learned from my dad is that "if you force it, you’ll break it".  So I’m learning to be more patient.

For our ultimate P-day as a zone we had tacos and played volleyball and threw the pig skin around. That was a lot of fun!  Yes!  It was sooo much fun and President Zarur who is our president here in Mendoza bought the meat which was super expensive.  He’s awesome!  And so now we are all sweaty and tired from running with a whole lot of jalapeños in our stomachs.

We have been sharing with a ton of people the movie MEET THE MORMONS since it is now on YouTube.  Watch it here:

Love you all and love to hear from those who wrote. Keep writing me and sending lots of pictures!!!

Elder Burke

Dalma and Jorge Gomez Temple Sealing!!!

My Best Friends- Jorge and Dalma Gomez

Making tortillas on P-day

Monday, November 16, 2015

Teaching in a Lottery Booth

November 16, 2015

Hopefully I can help maybe bring to light the miracle of the Plan of Salvation and its wonderful joy that it gives us.  It is pure truth and the power it gives to each man is to know that the effects of death cannot conquer them when they do indeed embrace Christ and his light.  To those who were in the bombings in France I send my condolences.  Just know for certain that we will all soon be able to see one another again, and it is by the grace, the mercy, and love of Christ our Redeemer.

This week has been filled with a lot of great finds in families!  We normally shoot to have 21 lessons with investigators and here in Corrientes it gets hard to get to 12.  But we got a wooping 18! With many new people to be teaching!  Oh, also Matias came to church and he cut his hair!  So he’s moving forward to recognizing his answer; if the message we share is true.  He is scheduled for the 28th of November so we are pumped for that.

Something that helps me understand to be patient with these people is that one day when we are all there before our Heavenly Father, I would imagine that we will see all the people we taught as missionaries there, already baptized and have made covenants with God to live with him.  We will probably see the small part we played in guiding people to accept the gospel in the way that was convincingly perfect and just for them.  The gospel of Jesus Christ will never change as we have faith, repentance, baptism, receiving of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end.  But it doesn’t mean that the way people accept this doctrine will always be the same formula as it was for us or others.  We are all unique, but at the same time one.  We constantly strive to do the right thing and be united in the cause, but that does not in any way erase our personal identity.  That’s why I love this gospel.  Never have I seen so many people who are different, be united.   And it’s only through true divine power given to men that is called the priesthood.  It’s made me more appreciative of all I have.

One of the news that we found was a woman named Adrianna.  She’s 23 years old and a psychology major.  She came to the open house way back in August and liked it.  But we could never find her.  Until one night we felt like trying her door again.  We went to where she supposedly lives and we were told that she lives on the other side in a different house on the same block.  What do you know?... we find her there and she is ready to hear more. She told us some things that were really funny to me as an observer from the outside.  She said that in our church she didn’t find crazy and less intelligent type people who cry, weep, and moan and do strange rituals that make you feel awkward.  But found normal, self-reliant and professional type people.  She tells us that our type of punctualization and professionalism in planning appointments is exceptional and she feels like she can be herself and expect to learn from us when we teach.  When we went to teach her again we had to do it where her sister works which is a lottery booth.  It was definitely different to be teaching in a lottery booth but we taught her, her sister, and her coworker who were all interested. Amazing! Maybe we should try teaching in a Bar next week and see what happens! ja ja  Na- Just Kidding.  But she is very lovely and we will see how her curiosity will bring her to know the truth.

Well I have passed the halfway mark in reading the Book of Mormon and it’s only been 16 days! The amount of doctrine I am trying to retain is hard day to day, but miraculously as our Mission President promised, we will have an increase in baptisms if we are focusing on teaching and reading the Book of Mormon, the keystone of our religion.  I know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God and I cannot find any other book that speaks plain truth in the most simplistic manner and that helps me be the person I wish to be. GO READ IT NOW.

Also the amount of sick calls that I am receiving somehow miraculously went up these past few days.  I am literally on the phone day and night talking to people and organizing hospital trips to the facilities that they need.  Obviously I have to have permission from President Franco and we have been talking quite a lot these past weeks. Ja ja.  Also if Hermana Franco is there she always shouts HI ELDER BURKE! ja ja.  They’re the best and if you come to the Resistencia, Argentina Mission you won’t be sorry.

Love all of you guys and love all the photos I can see of you.  You’re all growing up and I will get back home and be in shock probably to see all the changes in my friends, family, and coworkers.

Con afulaso de amor,

Elder Burke

Do not be afraid to act

November 9, 2015

Well seeing as there has been a lot of news from all of you guys out where you are, I felt like first off I would say... GO GRANDMA BURKE!!!!  I asked her to give a big, wet kiss for my little brother Alex and she did more than just that.  She went the whole 9 yards to give him a ton of kisses and give my brother probable PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). ja ja.  I died laughing when my mother told me what happened.  So its heartwarming to know that my family is still its crazy old self.  Also I hope that all my family members know that I love them so much and that I will forever be grateful to our Heavenly Father who gave His only begotten Son as a sacrifice, that we may see our loved ones yet again.  May all my love and comfort be to those who have lost dear family and friends.  The Plan of Salvation is a perfect plan, even for the most unseen and brutal and harsh mishaps and passings that this world throws at us.  Stay strong, and hold firm to the rod as have thousands of Disciples of Christ.

If my words don’t help, I hope that the words of Jeffery R Holland can help:

gospel principles class
This week I have never seen such a great success in our contacts as I have had before in our mission. It’s amazing and especially for Corrientes.  We are constantly waiting for the spirit and if we feel like talking to someone then we just do it.  God is good and never will we become tired of doing good unto others.  His spirit guides us to do good, so if the impression is to do good it’s of the spirit and of God.  So don’t question it and just do it.  We have had a lot of new people to talk to and even other people who are people I have met when I was here before . Now I am enjoying the blessings of the good impressions we have left on other people.

Matias didn’t come to church again and it was because he had other things to do but said he could come for an hour.  But as usual we are just being patient and we teach the blessings that people can receive if they do what we invite them to do.  Of course it will be a bit different and maybe uncomfortable at first, but isn’t that how it is with everything different and new?  It’s what we feel.  Basically it’s like working out for the first time.  You go to a new gym and even do things you’ve never done and even after you are sore, but then you are strengthened and then ready for bigger weights, bigger goals and better health.  So we are working hard with him.

We found Rosa Flores again and we couldn’t talk with her again but we said we would pass by next week.  As we were returning to our pension after walking for a long time we were passing by her house.  There is a main road close by and there is an elevated sidewalk on the side.  On this sidewalk were many horses grazing in the front lawns of people.  Usually we hear them so that they can move for us but before doing anything we heard a man yell from the street below.  He stopped on his motorcycle and was pointing to the group of horses there and helped us see that the 1 year old granddaughter of Hermana Rosa Flores had wandered from her house without notice and was literally 6 inches from being kicked by a full 500 lbs. horse or worse trampled to the ground. A calmness over took me as I advanced, walking silently within the group of horses.  All were faced away from me eating, and one startled noise or movement could have frightened the horses to kick me and possibly injure or take my life.  But as I moved quietly and normally, I picked up her granddaughter and took her to safety at her grandma’s house just a couple of yards away, without anything happening to the both of us.  I feel like it’s in moments like these where God tests us, to see what is more important, our lives or the lives of others.  Those who accept Christ and die in Christ will have a better life than those who pass away without him.  I felt an assurance that our loving Heavenly Father would guide and protect us both, even if it seemed crazy to do such.  But having faith in Christ and everything gives us protection and even the power to do good in this world.

We have been going with Joaquin and Sandra a lot, visiting many people and they are awesome as always to help us with our investigators.  Just yesterday we went with Joaquin and Juan Romero to see some people and their skills and talents have helped us come closer to the investigators that we are teaching.  So my testimony is huge in that members do make the difference.  If you are a member I challenge you to do what I wished I would have done when I was back at home; go out one day with the missionaries and just be around them.  Help them in their appointments, and even get to know them.  You will see just how big of an impact you will make with giving one day with visiting people, or even 2 hours.  Go, do it when you have a free day or even a couple hours and see how great the gospel is.

I cooked sloppy joes for Elder Montero and he really liked it.  I loved it and also we have been working out, as hard as you can in a garage with only your own body weight as a weight.  It’s hard but when I get home I’ll be in the gym super-fast. ja ja.

I love you all and hope that you are all well!

Love Elder Burke

teaching a family outside and it started raining

Birthday lunch with Hermana Mara

Monday, November 2, 2015

I need a Gym

November 2, 2015
Elder Burke and Elder Montero
So first of I want to say that I love all of you and thanks for writing me!  It was awesome to see the lives of all of you and reply back.  I used most of my time writing replies so I won’t have a good detailed message today as before.

So we have had super success with Celene, the 9 year old miracle, who is just bringing friends and relatives to hear us teach!  We are talking to her aunt Angelica and she is absolutely the best!  She is happy to find people who want to do good and she couldn’t come to church with Celene this week, but she will be there later.

Matias is progressing still and now we are teaching his entire family of 8!  It was remarkable because we came to the house of Matias and found his aunts and uncles and their kids as well.  We taught the plan of salvation and they were super interested, but wanted to know more before they make a commitment.  So we will be teaching them more.  Matias won’t be baptized this Saturday sadly, because he doesn’t feel prepared but the thing is we are working our butts off down here with teaching new people.

Que capo que es el-  Who's the boss??
Well the funny story of the week is that first off, it was Elder Montero’s Birthday and I bought him a ton of Lays potato chips and gave him traditional birthday spankings, I think he like it! ;P ja ja JK.  And we went to the house of Hermana Mara to eat lunch for his birthday and it was all super good! She did arroz con pollo (rice with chicken) and papas fritas (fries)! And well afterwards basically we had an arm wrestle with the brother of Irina Ricardo, who is 15, but very well off in being strong and well... he beat us both. It was embarrassing!  But what can I say.. I haven’t seen a gym nor had the time to be buff.   And being my now slender man figure has got the best of me.  It’s the worst.  So we are now doing more exercises in the morning.  ja ja ja
Arm wrestling with Ricardo!

Other than that the area is great, we are working with the members and we are becoming basically a family even more with the branch!  Love you all!

Elder Burke

Noche de rama with mi familia

Que verguenza que tenemos--What a shame we are
- we both lose to a 15 year old!

Monday, October 26, 2015

Follow Impressions

October 26, 2015

Hola cha amigos y cha amigas!  Ojala que estén bien! Paramuy contento aca en Corrientes y no puedo esperar a ver todo de mis nuevos adventuras esta translado!
New Zone, New Faces
Elders Toledo, Trumbo, Diaz, Me, Stokc, Peters, Felkins, Gonzolaz
So basically there are some pretty awesome stories that you can get to hear this time as being I have plenty of time to write.  Where do I start?

So let us begin by thanking Sandra Gomez who is just the best helper to the missionaries in the world.  She came back from Chile, when I was here the first time in Mendoza Al Sur, and she helped us a ton then too.  We went to visit many people who we have been teaching and she invites them to come to activities, offers her help in everything, and really is doing it because she wants to.  I was thinking of all the blessings she must be receiving the more she is helping us.  Wow.  It also made me more accepting of when I get home and how I can still be a great influence for the missionary work and helping those in need with the missionaries.  While we were walking to another appointment, Elder Montero said to Sandra that she has to show us how it is done contacting someone as a Hermana.  She said ok.  So you would think that she would go talk to whichever person, no, we ended up almost to our appointment until we passed by a nice lady with her dog and like a bullet fired from a gun, she stopped and talked to her.  It was amazing because we all felt the spirit give us the impression that we should talk to her after she greeted us.  And Sandra with her awesome spiritual sensitivity, she was on the ball.  This Lady was super interested and was actually very excited to talk to us, when we go to her house this Tuesday.  She’s been helping us a lot and it’s just one person who is doing a lot of work, that’s what happens to those who go on a mission and serve it well, they don’t stop being missionaries.  Their fire and passion never die.  I can’t imagine what it would be like if we had just three Sandras, or 5 or even 8!  The whole game would be changed and we can talk to more people and bring more people unto Christ!  Booya!

Miracle story:  so as we were walking from a lesson to another, I have had a lot of time in this area so I know it like the back of my hand, I decided to take yet again another short cut as I always do with my companions here and get there in a different way.  I found it weird that I would pick it like that, but more than anything I know now it was an impression to go down that way.  Elder Montero asked me if I knew where I was going, and as usual he gets the confirmation of the yes when we get to where we need to go.  So as we were passing by a couple of homes that wouldn’t have been in our way in any other route, this lady calls for us to come over to her.  So we stopped and went to her and she told us that her daughter was baptized and that her daughter saw us and wants to talk to us.  The daughter’s name is Celena and she is 9.  She is probably the biggest example of faith I will ever find in my entire life.  I have never seen a daughter of God know so much for her age and express her love for the savior by inviting others to come to know of the happiness we have.  We were going to teach her something the next day when we were in her house, but I basically asked her if she wants to be a missionary?  Her smile was super big and said she would love that.  So we taught her better ways of inviting her friends or family to come to know more things about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  She is so freaking adorable and awesome.  She will change lives because she honestly changed mine.

Now for the best one, I think.  Being a worker in the vineyard of the Lord, you come to know many people the longer you are in an area.  That being said we were walking in the street and walked into the daughter of Rosa Flores.  Well, she called to us to come to her.  She told us that she had come to see her mom again, because she remembered my face and remembered that all we were doing there was to help her mother.  She told us that and said come see her tomorrow morning.  We told her that the last time we talked with her she said she didn’t want any trouble because her daughter literally hates us with a passion and takes it out on her mom.  But we did what she asked and found Rosa outside with her ex-husband and we just started talking and she told us of what she had felt before and how she was really missing that feeling.  She missed us and we convinced her that she can trust in God and everything will work out in the end.  Life literally is like that.  There are over thousands of problems that surround us every day and when we push through it all, with faith that God is guiding us to a safe harbor, we always make it there in the end.  I am super excited to help Hermana Rosa Flores get back on the path to being baptized.

Other than that there has been a lot of rain!  Hopefully you guys are all well, safe, and happy, if not I’m willing to talk to whoever needs help :)


Elder Burke
Our new zone!

la costanero

la costanero (the coast)

Finally found cheap strawberries!!
Yummy with sugar!!

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Alma Chapters 18-24

October 20, 2015

Well... where to start...

Me and Elder Montero
So there are many things that have happened over this last week and the most will probably bring a lot of questions of my well-being.  However, I would like to say that I am alright and well.  There is nothing better than being a missionary here in Argentina and I will never stop doing my duty to help those in need and preach repentance to the people.

As we were in a trio with Elder Montero, Coates and I, we have been trying to work as one for the last week of Elder Coates.  He’s already flying home right now as I am writing, or is waiting in an airport anxiously waiting.  And that is what we have done.  We are visiting many people, and there are a lot here, in all of Mendoza al Sur.  Well for starters we were robbed.  It was actually pretty different from what I would imagine a robbing would be, but seeing as we are in an area where crime is pretty high, well you just have to deal with it.  As we were going down to see Alejandra in her house at 5 o clock in the day, I was talking a call from an Elder who was sick and we were walking in between the houses and then came from behind two teenage punks.  One was 14 the other 17 I think and basically the 17 year-old went for Elder Montero and Coates and the 14 year-old for me.  The kid tried to take the phone from my hand but I put it up in the air and told him no and he couldn’t get it from me, being tall and all as I am.  He then told me he would kill me with the stick that he had.  I pushed him off and scared him off by yelling at him to beat it.  The other guy took the phone from Elder Montero and then from behind me he ripped off my backpack and they took off running.  We left un-hurt with nothing that was of important value.  We kept on walking down the road and told the cops, but as usual they don’t help a lot.  But we are learning more about how to navigate here in the parts I don’t know.   It gets dangerous at night a lot but we manage to pass by without harm

I don’t share this story to boast of my actions, or to have people feel sorry for us or to worry, I in fact hope to show the power of God manifested as he protects every single one of his obedient and humble missionaries.  I love this area and I will still be here with elder Montero as we go, as the only two now, in our huge area.  We are always being smart and safe and knowing that our backpacks act as our Kevlar for these times of calamity.  I do not wish to hear any type of remarks as to if I am ok, or if we need to be moved.  God put me here and I’m staying till He relieves me of my duty.  It really has helped me understand more of the stories of Ammon and Aaron in the Book of Mormon.   I’m actually reading those parts right now and their success in changing the hearts of people that sought to take their lives.  I’m just fine, as I was before, and we are going to help a lot of people.

So we have an awesome investigator of Elder Lourenco when he was here without me.  His name is Matias.  He is 18 years old and is seeing the changes of the gospel of Jesus Christ in his life.  He used to sleep in forever and not do much, but his aunts told us that they are seeing a difference with him as he got up early to go to church.  We taught the word of wisdom to him and his aunts and they really liked how we as followers of Christ don’t drink Alcohol, Coffee, or Tea, and we don’t smoke or take illegal drugs.  I love explaining this to people because as I worked in the Hospital ER I could see the end results that always come from talking drugs and alcohol or tobacco.  Honestly they are beyond destructive of your physical body, but they destroy who you really are and who you can become if you don’t stop taking it.  What’s more important for you as a family?  Going out and being drunk and possibly not making home alive to your family?  Does smoking just a couple of cigarettes lower the chance of you getting lung cancer?  Being a mother and drinking before you have a kid can harm the chances of your infant growing up to be healthy.  A father who loses control and loses the confidence of his wife and kids as he hurts them physically and verbally?  I honestly am tormented with so much sadness as I see people throw away what they can be when they rely on such substances and take them without a care, and sadly they know fully of the dangers that can obliterate their entire world.  But being a missionary I helped explain and will always tell, that even if you are and addict or have already suffered from the deadly effects of these harsh substances, Christ’s atonement gives us the second chance to stop and change course.  He also gives people the power to move forward and to avoid relapsing.  Matias is awesome and will be baptized here hopefully on the 31st of October.  That’s the birthday of my companion Elder Montero!  ja ja Happy Birthday!

There are a lot of changes in the mission as now I am the only nurse here and I may be taking calls from the Hermanas (sisters) soon.  We will see what happens.  Other than that, we are looking hard for new people and trying to work with progressing investigators.

I love you all as always and love all the photos that you send me! Take care!

Elder Burke

Jorge and Dalma

Noche de goar (FHE) con presidente

Kiara es tan linda!

Dulce de mammon

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Family History

October 12, 2015

Well seeing as it is almost Mother’s Day here in Argentina...,. Happy Mother’s day mom! ja ja well I won’t be able to call like last time so you’ll have to wait till Christmas. I know I’m mean. ;)

Elder Burke (aka mission nurse) hard at work!
So this last week was another crazy blast of excitement and new things.  We first off had interviews with President Franco in the church, close by the coast in Corrientes.  It was just me and elder Stock because we weren’t able to do the interviews from the emergency transfers we had a couple of weeks ago.  They were good and he gave me a new book for the program of Swiss medical that has all the doctors in Chaco, Corrientes and Formosa.  So, it’s making my work as a mission nurse much easier.  Elder stock and I caught up with one another and told the funny stories of what has been going on lately.  He’s having a harder time with his new companion and adjusting, poor guy.  He’s already had a new companion almost every transfer, he’s constantly changing.

Teaching how to find your ancestors!
Me and Great-grandpa Butler
We had a new thing that we did this last Saturday where we all were invited to do a family history center in the district building.  There were a ton of decorations and a ton of members putting everything together.  They specifically told us missionaries that we are not to teach anything about the church and only help people get a good understanding on the website FAMILSEARCH.COM.  It was absolutely a blast, and even though it rained, a good amount of people came to the activity. We had a lot of food and it was basically a museum.  I got to be one of the explainers of how to put your information on family search.  I used my own family tree to show them examples.  It was cool because it’s been awhile since the last time I have used it and they have made a ton of changes to it.  I showed them my great grandparents and it was super cool.  There were two stories that happened.  One was this member who was back from her mission for a couple of years still didn’t know how to get started.  I personally helped her find out that her name and password was the same as she had used for her mission code!  So when I could show her, her own family tree she got really excited and wanted to know everything.  Afterwards an investigator of the Hermanas was passing along and this investigator told me that she never knew that the church did things like this.  She has had missionaries visit her family for 30 years and she was visiting the church center for the first time and she was very impressed!  Also her son was getting baptized that night!  She received a great new way for her to connect herself to her ancestors and also feel the spirit strong.  I was super happy to get to know them and help them out.

Being as we are in Mendoza Al Sur, we have very dangerous areas that we are learning to avoid by experience at night.  We went to visit Alejandra and we were very blessed by God that we could get to her house and also walk in her subdivision without any really bad things happening.  I guess there is a combination of two things, the power of the Lord and the guidance of the Spirit.  We are constantly guided to avoid areas that are dangerous or we receive and impression to go down a different road.  Also when I have read the stories of Ammon and also of Peter from the Bible, they are constantly in danger and there are so many circumstances that they are in as witnesses of Christ and missionaries. There are a lot of bad things that happen to them, but they leave from the flames unquenched nor burnt, but with true manifestations that Heavenly Father is on their side.  And that’s how I have felt these past two days.  Don’t ever worry about what will happen, because if you are with the spirit and worthy of it, you will be protected by the will of the Father. Oh I love my Heavenly Father for protecting my family and also my companions and I from the dangers of this world.
Mission nurse responsibilities

Love you all! See you next week!
Elder Burke

Family History Center Night

"I think a mustache looks good on me"

Awesome massage chairs
shopping at the mall on p-day

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Oh, How I love Conference

October 5, 2015

An incredible amount of the spirit was brought about in my life as we were able to do so many things. I can always remember clearly the moments when I have felt the spirit and how it has changed my life forever.  Before sharing my comments on the past week, I want to share my favorite talks from this conference from:

1. Elder Holland. The Love of Mothers.

2. Elder Nelson. The Power of the Woman.

3. Elder Uchtdorf. Truth is Always Plane and Simple.

Baptism of Alejandra
 Elders Munoz, Coates, Alejandra, Pres. Zarur, Elders Montero, Burke
Now for the week. We had a baptism of a lovely mother called Alejandra and we are working on having her confirmed for the next Sunday.  She was happy and even happier to find that the water was warm and not cold for her baptism.  It was very good and now that Elder Muñoz knows that I can sing, he helps me use my talents to invite the spirit.  So I sang I’m trying to be like Jesus for her baptism.  We will be working with her kids and husband to being baptized as well.  I cannot wait for that moment.

Movie night- Meet the Mormons
Before that we had Friday night movie night!  We watched "Meet the Mormons" and sadly we didn’t have as much as we were hoping for.  It’s because it rained a little bit, and nobody normally leaves their house if there is a little rain.  But, we had over thirty people which was awesome!  I was super happy to have that.  I hosted the movie and helped warm up the crowd to being ready to see the movie and when we ended, the spirit guided me to speak mightily and truthfully about the gospel of Jesus Christ and its help in bringing the family to being something that will never have an expiration date.  It was so thick that I could feel it in my veins.  I invited all of them to share their experiences more on Facebook, and to be ready to share their story to those who want to know more about the church.

Elders Allred and Burke at General Conference
We had the wonderful opportunity to watch conference, which is basically the Super Bowl, the World Series, and the World Cup combined for the Missionaries.  I love Conference and I am shocked at how I didn’t really listen to it when I was at home.  I am now sad at probably the many instances for spiritual growth I have missed out on, but we are truly lucky to have the internet to bring us back these great, spirit filled talks.  We watched attentively and the Gringo Elders went to the English Room, there is just something about hearing the real voice of someone talking and not a translator.  I’m happy I can now listen to two different languages and increase my ability to talk to more of my brothers and sisters.  I will not be planning on stopping at Spanish.  We got to see three new apostles called and their testimonies were very strong.  I am excited to learn from their experiences and hear the spirit testify through them as they are now special witnesses of The Christ.

This week has been going different as I am looking continually for all the old people I have taught and inviting them again to come unto Christ.  It talks a lot about how Christ, more than once, returned to a certain city in his mortal ministry, and how I can imagine the people must feel to see the difference when the Savior is around and when he isn’t.  I can just imagine the amount of people who didn’t accept his message the first time, but later changed their minds and followed him when he came back.  Is that not what happens to us in this life?  Do we not at some point regret our decisions to not follow Christ the first time or change our minds later down the road? Well that is where the Atonement truly shows its magnificence.  We are constantly invited to the kingdom of God, not just once, not just twice, but continually throughout our life.  Because our Heavenly Father TRUELY does indeed love every one of his children.  The amount of second chances we get is miraculous and has helped me see the greater value of my very soul.  So having that perspective, we have been visiting Magdalena again and some other people.  I have so much excitement to be working again with these people and inviting them unto Christ!

So a funny part of being a missionary and returning to an area you were in before is that everyone here has told me that I have gotten taller and I am even more skinny.  They say that I am really skinny.  I guess that’s what Formosa does to you when you have to walk at least 6 miles a day and cook 6 times a day during the week.  Man it’s been a change to not cook so much and have a ton to eat with the members.  I am working back to getting bigger again so I don’t scare my family and friends when I get back home.  ja ja.

If you are at all sad, alone, or need a miracle, talk to your Father in Heaven who is ever waiting for you to acknowledge that you need him and He needs you to know you are loved.  Pray, it’s literally the greatest thing that changes it all.  May the Holy Ghost, the Great Comforter, bring you peace to your heart during these hard trials in your life.

Elder Burke

Hermana Mara, Irina, me and Ricardo

Happy almost Halloween

Elder Coates and I