Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Merry Christmas 12/22/25

It felt like every other day was p-day this week.  We had the two mission Christmas activities to set up.  Which meant we got to stay at both the activities. haha. We had one half of the mission on one day and the other half the next day.  Mission Christmas activities mean that we get to watch real movies.  On Wednesday we watched hotel Transylvania 2 and on Thursday we watched Inside Out.  Two movies I don´t have to worry about watching when I get home.  Both of those movies kept reminding me of home.  Part of Hotel Transylvania takes place in Santa Cruz and Inside Out takes place in San Francisco. haha.  

For the activity on Thursday, we went to this place called Atolera Yoselyn, which is like 15 minutes outside of Comayagua.  They had horses there and president said we could ride them.  Normally that is against the mission handbook, but he gave us permission.  After the activity we stopped by Comayagua, and it is a really cool place.  I had never been there before.  It´s a pretty big city (the original capital of Honduras) but a lot friendlier feeling compared to Tegucigalpa. 

On Saturday, we had the ward Christmas party.  This ended up being kind of a party week. Not much work got done in the office or the field, and this week we are going to get stuffed to death because a million people keep inviting us over to eat.  I am going to keep this email short because I will get to skype with ya´ll on Christmas!  ¡Feliz Navidad!

- Elder Burnham

Transfers are over and Christmas is coming 12/14/15

I use a computer all the time, but sometimes I don´t have time to write home.  oops...haha.  I will try to sum up what happened within the last two weeks.  This will probably be another stream of consciousness email again.

Elder Bingham was listening to this DVD thing that had Elder Holland speaking, so I was kinda listening too while we were working.  Elder Holland was talking about how we always face trials in our lives, but that doesn't mean that God has abandoned us.  In fact, we had trials because he loves us.  We are able to learn and grow so much from our experiences.  He was talking about prophets from the bible and how they had so many trials in their lives because God loved them.  The whole Ether 12:27 thing:  

27 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.

I was thinking about that and how I have so many trials in my life, as well as everyone else.  I was in the office looking out the window (three stories up) and saw a little girl our on the street.  She was probably 7 or 8 years old, in the street begging for money and food.  I have no idea what her situation was, but it really hit me that my trials are nothing compared to hers.  Why should I be so caught up in my problems?  And why was I not doing anything to help her?  I am really just rambling on about this, but I guess the main message that I want you to take away is that:
1. Trials make us stronger
2. God loves ALL of us.  
3. We should serve others, we will forget about our own problems and learn to love the people around us.  


This was a pretty crazy week.  We had the transfers meeting, but it got delayed for 4 hours later, because the day we decide to have transfers, is the day that there is some kind of nationwide public transportation strike which caused everyone to be late. whoops...haha.  With four other missionaries, we did a musical number in the meeting and sang Silent Night (the Pentatonix version, whoo! Hopefully a video coming soon)  But it´s what happens after that gets a little more crazy. We have to go to the airport and pick up the NEW missionaries, and the next day we have to send the OLD missionaries home.  

I don´t know what the issues are exactly, but immigration has something against people from Bolivia.  We had two new missionaries (one for our mission and another for Tegucigalpa) that are from Bolivia and customs was giving them a hard time.  They received less than 90 days on their entrance stamps in their passports in the airport.  Then we had Elder Mamani, who was going home to Bolivia, and they gave him trouble in the airport.  He had some dumb scotch tape in his bag and they started freaking out because it's a sharp object, and they didn't let him take his flight!  We had to schedule another flight for him TWO days later because the flights for the next day were all full.  

Transfers leave some missionaries displaced for a little bit so they have to stay at our house.  That is why we had a big nice house, to accommodate large groups staying over night, but did we have a big group stay with us!  Including us, we had 28 missionaries in our house!!!  It was absolutely insane.  We had 10 elders that were going to train the new missionaries, 8 zone leaders that were staying for the leadership meeting the next day, 5 elders that were finishing their missions, Elder Hernandez, and us 4 secretaries.  We ended up locking ourselves in our room so no one would bug us haha.  Of course the house was absolutely trashed (but we will get it cleaned up haha).

We have Elder Hernandez staying with us right now because he has to be in the city to receive some therapy treatments for some tendon problems he has in his legs, so we are kind of in a trio right now, he is super cool.  

The other day, this protest/mob came walking through the city and they were chanting and holding torches and some of them had scary masks on, but we never really figured out what they were protesting about.  We all came to the window to watch, and then they started pointing and yelling at us, so we moved away from the windows, then they kept marching on.  There was this ten year-old that was flipping us off. yep.  

We have another elder staying with us right now too, Elder Argueta.  He is from Honduras and was serving in Peru Trujillo Norte (the same mission as Sister Brogan!) but he had to come home because the AP´s in his mission LOST his passport.  That is crazy, and makes me make sure to do my job well, haha.  He is only going to be here for this week until he gets a new passport and can go back to Peru.  When we went to go pick him up from the airport, I swear I could recognize him.  After talking to him for a little bit, I found out that he is from Catacamas (my first area).  But I still couldn't make the connection yet.  He didn't seem to recognize me either.  We knew a whole bunch of mutual people.  About an hour later, my brain went pop and I remembered him first name, his cousin´s name, where he lived, and I kind of freaked him out for a second.  Elder Bradshaw and I went to his house to teach some of his nonmember cousins.  Everything became clear and we remembered each other. So that was kinda funny.  

Tomorrow, we are going to Immigration again to take out more residencies for missionaries ( I still am waiting for mine :(  haha). And Wednesday and Thursday, we will be having some mission Christmas activities.  So that should be fun.  

On p-day, we decided to go to Ojojona.  Which is that small town about an hour outside of Tegucigalpa.  It is a super cheap bus, so we decided to go and check it out.  It is a super cool place.  It is in the hills and has a more temperate climate.  You kind of feel that you are transported back in time, because you have these old buildings and churches and cobble stone streets with children riding on horses and donkeys wandering around.  It is super pretty and also a cool place to get souvenirs (maybe I got some stuff).  I will have to go back and visit one more time before I leave the office ( or maybe I will get transferred there one day).  

Christmas is coming up!  I hope that everyone has a good time!  Here is a link to a super cool video that everyone should check out if you haven´t seen it yet.  #ASaviorIsBorn

Happy Holidays!

- Elder Burnham

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Happy December

Hello!  Happy first day of December! I got the packages yesterday!  I took out the santa hats, but I saved everything else to open on Christmas day! haha.

We had kind of a funny experience on Sunday.  Normally on Sundays, one of the counselors in the mission presidency takes our truck, but this Sunday nobody needed the truck so we drove it to church.  When we showed up to the chapel, there were no chairs!  There would be nowhere for anyone to sit during sacrament meeting.  What happened was that all of the chairs in our church were in another chapel because we had a stake conference the week before in the stake center.  So we took the truck to the stake center and filled it up with our chairs and took them back to our chapel.  If we didn't have the truck that day, we wouldn´t have been able to bring all the chairs back.  Miracle!

Another truck story!  We went to fill up the truck with gas and one of the workers at the gas station (self service gas stations don´t exist in Honduras) said, ´´oh you guys are from the church of Jesus Christ of latter-time kings right?´´ los reyes de los últimos tiempos.  He was close, but that just isn´t quite the name of our church haha.  

In the office, just kind of for fun, we got some copies of the book of Mormon in Portuguese.  SO I got my own copy and I am going to start studying Portuguese in my free time.  I even started using Duolingo haha.  I have the website set up in Spanish learning Portuguese so I can practice the both languages at the same time. I just hope I don´t mess my brain up by doing that. haha.  

I started looking up things that we could do on p-days since we are in the city and have a car, so I found the National Gallery of Art which just happened to be like 2 or 3 miles from the office.  I convinced everyone to go, but when we get there the security guy tells us that this exhibit was moved to Comayagua 16 months ago... :(  Comayagua is another city about two hours away, and it makes sense because it is more of a tourist hub than Tegucigalpa.  We decided to go to the Basilica de Suyapa which is this huge, old, Catholic cathedral.  I had always seen it from a distance, but had never gone up close or even inside.  It was incredible!  It had a ton of these huge stained glass windows and there weren't any services going on so we weren´t disturbing anything.  Elder Bingham and I had to test out the acoustics in there so we sang a few church hymns! haha.  (hopefully a video coming soon).  The echo was really cool.  

We did part two of the pepper challenge this week. haha.  I forgot to ask what kind of pepper it was, it was a tiny little red pepper.  I was surprised that it was not nearly as spicy as the jalapeño. haha.  These members kept telling us that it would be way spicier.  haha.  I survived yet again. 

Today we went to the immigration offices to take out residencies of missionaries.  The immigration offices are like going to the DMV... You have to wait and wait and wait. haha, but everything ended up going pretty smoothly.  

We are teaching this guy named Fernando, and he is really cool.  He basically is a member, but hasn't gotten baptized.  He goes to church all the time and participates in all the activities. Some of his family on his mom´s side are members, but his dad and his family are not.  He is 17, so we are hoping there won´t be any complications with permission. We also started teaching his friend Dennison, and he has also come to church the last few weeks.
Love Elder Burnham
Here is a Video


Happy Black Friday!


Elder Bingham had a copy of the November conference Ensign, and I saw the pictures of the Bateys, so that was pretty neat.  

In other news, yesterday, I completed a full year in the mission! Crazy! and it was also Thanksgiving! Whoo! And boy did we celebrate! haha.  In the morning, we went to DENNY´S for breakfast!  In honor of me completing a year and Elder Bingham completing a year of being in the mission field in Honduras, and because it was Thanksgiving.  So I basically ate these cinnamon roll pancakes with eggs, hash browns, bacon, and sausage.  I was in heaven. haha 

In the Temple, there are senior couple missionaries.  The Christensens had been in the US for a while because the temple was closed for some deep cleaning.  But then they came back recently and invited a ton of missionaries to come over for a big Thanksgiving dinner!  At the temple they have apartments for the temple presidency, so we went over to their apartment and we had ten missionaries in total.  They cooked us turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, rolls (homemade and sooooo good), and to finish it off with key lime pie.  I can easily say that this was one of the best meals I have had on my mission.  I have never been so full, and have never eaten so much American food in one day.  All of the gringo missionaries were very happy. 

I hope you all had a delicious Thanksgiving!

- Elder Burnham