Thursday, June 28, 2012

June 25th, 2012

...I love your emails. i'm always laughing and smiling when i read them but i'm also touched by the things you share with me. thank you! apartment is west of eastern street on warm springs, it's called avietta i think. it's 2121 warm springs. it's nice but we don't spend a ton of time there. Thank you for telling me more about the Las Vegas temple. I talked to someone here about it. The people here are very involved in missionary work and they use their temple a lot! the room was very full when we went. It is such a blessing to have the blessing of the temple. Sister Cedillo and i talked about the temple during companionship study. It is truly a sacred work that blesses the members. I think that the only way we can successfully "endure to the end" is by attending the temple. it prepares us for eternity!  The Celestial room in the temple here is gorgeous! they are all beautiful but i've never seen one like this one. i'm already excited to go back! Mom, thanks for the weather update for this week. i always wonder how missionaries know about the weather without the radio or TV but now i know: Their parents tell them! :) It is very hot but really not that bad at all. I've noticed that it makes us tired quicker but that people always offer to give us a bottle of water. The water here will give you kidney stones so we have to buy all of our water...

 We are doing an activity with our ward where we meet with each family to give them the lesson of the restoration then commit them to read the book of mormon as a family but highlight every reference to the savior. Then when they are done, they have a copy of the Book of Mormon ready to give to a friend and highlighted to show them that it IS another testament of Christ. Cool idea, right? that's sister cedillo for you. She is brilliant at creativity, using the members, and involving the investigators. I respect her a lot. She had to put a lot of work in to be on a mission.  ...I'm trying hard to keep a good journal. i write about half a page every morning. it is surprisingly hard to make the time but it's worth it. We had 3 investigators at church again but we had 8 commit to coming so we're a little bummed. Lupe and her husband antonio came. Her baptism is scheduled for july 14th but we are trying to teach them together so it might get moved back. we don't get the same enthusiasm from antonio but he is listening and he keeps his commitments so he's progressing. Gladys came as well. we think she might have a mental issue though so we don't know if we are able to teach her or not. Gilberto did not come. i was trying not to look back every 5 minutes in hopes that he had walked in late. That was disappointing. he cancelled his apt with us last week because he went out of town. maybe this week. We did get to teach Hector though. We focused on the gospel blessing families as we taught the restoation. He is praying about the first vision and president monson this week. it was a great lesson with the spirit there. Well, i love you all! thank you for your examples and keeping me updated on things there. It's so fun to hear the latest and greatest! i love you! Hurrah for israel!

Hermana Burrup

Dear President Neider,

It's been a great week. We've been focusing on finding more people to teach. We talk to everyone we can. Serving in Spanish can be a bit tricky. If they speak English we don't get to teach them so we try to specifically find Spanish speaking families. Something I've found though is that a lot of the people that i didn't think spoke Spanish actually do. by talking to everyone, doors open and we are able to find more people. Although it is much more rewarding to teach the people we find, my purpose doesn't say, "to invite others to come to Christ by only meeting with me and my companion." If it's a referral, i hope that it's a good one and i hope that they accept the message of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. We met a man named Alberto this week. He is one that didn't look like he knew Spanish. He was avoiding us. Come to find out that the only reason he was avoiding us was because he was scared we would try to talk to him in English. We talked a lot about families, testimony, and church attendance. We returned on Saturday to invite him to church again and his daughter asked us to leave and not come back. it was abrupt, surprising, and disappointing. As a new missionary in the field, that was my first experience like that. I was excited to talk more with Alberto and i honestly believe he wanted to talk to us. It makes me want to speak with boldness of testimony in even my street contacts because it may be my only chance to share with them. Also, While watching the PMG DVDs, President Holland emphasized that the people we teach are not just baptismal statistics but children of God. I want to maintain that perspective and let it change my attitude as well as the way that i teach. It is a great blessing to be a missionary, President. i'm still enthusiastic and excited to see progress in investigators, yes, but also in my ability to teach by the spirit. I look to your example and thank God often for you and wife. May God bless the Nevada Las Vegas mission! Hoorah for Israel!

Sister Burrup

Monday, June 18, 2012

June 18, 2012

That girl of ours is so awesome!  She's loving life and already seeing success! For random details and answers to questions, read the family letter.  For specific mission success and investigator details, read the President's letter.  But believe me, they both are good and you should read them both :)

Dear Fun Family of mine!

Thank you for telling me all about your lives! Thank you Allison Mills for the letter and Dad, Jon and Nicole, Janae, and Mom for the emails. Everyday i think, "if i had my own phone and it was allowed, i would call you and tell you this or that!" it happens all the time where i wish i could tell you everything all the time. Don't worry mom: I'll try to fit as much in as i can.  A few of this week's highlights are in my letter to president. We had 3 investigators in church yesterday! Guadalupe is preparing for baptism next month and we are going to invite her husband to prepare for the same date this week. I'm excited. Sister Cedillo was talking to someone else so i had a 5 minute chat with Guadalupe ( we call her lupita :) in the chapel before church. We talked a lot about the spirit and how it feels. She said that she has felt the spirit before she met with missionaries but never such a complete feeling of peace. She is ready and excited! We also met with Martins family again. They really liked our FHE on the atonement so we are doing another one soon on the plan of salvation. They are listening to us because they want to know what martin believes. Martin has the priesthood now and has blessed the sacrament. He is doing great and his sister is very interested as well! Federico is also the best! he has a wife and one kid. We met him at a gas station. He has a catholic background but doesn't believe it is true. He says he will only pray to god...not to saints or mary because that is worshiping idols to him. He discovered that for himself! He has lots of questions. I can't wait to talk to him too! It was a great week but this week will be even better! I have already noticed that i can understand the spanish a little better. I know it hasn't been long but i think the Lord is blessing me. This last week i felt at home in the branch. It was wonderful. I am only in one spanish branch but like i mentioned last week. it is a huge area! there are about 60 members. 75 is a ward. Sister Neider taught us last week that we aren't shooting to be a ward just to be a ward but to bring God's blessings to more of His children. The purpose is so simple and clear! it reminds me a lot of what President Meyers told me. Everything all goes back to a loving Father that desire for His children to come Home. What a neat idea and it's everywhere! 

Well, in response to your emails. Jon and Nicole, I'm so glad you still go on dates and fun ones too! Wait to use those chacos and thanks for telling me about it. I'm a missionary but i'm always glad to see good marriages. good marriages are especially harder to come by in Vegas. My mission president talks about his wife ALL the time. It's cute and totally appropriate but it is nice to see good examples! Jon, i'll be sure to include you in my prayers for your job! Dad, i'm glad you had a good father's day and that you got my gift. I hope you know how important you are to me. I thought of you lots yesterday! :) Also, i got a dearelder in the MTC from grandpa burrup. i hope his health is well. I love my dad and my grandparents! i've been so so blessed! It is hot here but it's not that bad at all. the highest was probably around 110. believe it or not, i think my legs aren't as white. I never knew my legs could tan :) I'm glad Janae and Steve are in AZ. maybe i'll get the chance to serve in arizona later on. As for the pictures, Janae. They aren't only allowed but encouraged! it was a lot of fun to see pictures. Thank you. My Companion is from Mexico originally but her family lives in SLC now. She reminds me a lot of jon. She teaches with boldness and logic and it is simply powerful. she had training this week so joined two other companionships each for a day. I had a great time but i was relieved to be back with sister cedillo. She laughs at dumb things with me so we get along. She is a convert of about 6 years. Her brother is coming to the West mission next month. pretty crazy.

Well, thank you again for your prayers! i love you each and my evening prayers might be long but i do pray for you as well! Thank you for your support and examples!

Hoorah for Israel

Hermana Burrup

Dear President Neider,

You asked me at the Spanish conference if i was still feeling great about things. I honestly don't remember how i responded but if anything this week has only increased my desire to work! we contacted someone about a week and a half ago. we didn't realize at first but it became clear pretty quick that he had been drinking. His name is Gilberto. he gave us his address but he wasn't home when we passed by. We found him this week but really only had the chance to invite him to church and he actually came yesterday. maybe i'm overly excited because it is my first investigator at church but I have never been so happy to see someone at church! it surprised both of us! He said that there were a lot of things and people giving him reasons not to come but he knew he didn't to come and he did. We have our first appointment with him next week. Once again, the Lord answers our prayers!

We had another neat experience with a man named Hector. An appointment fell through but he was on the same street. I honestly did't know why because he doesn't live in that area and he wasn't doing anything but there is a reason and it's the gospel! He didn't know his address but had it written down so we copied it into our planners. Unfortunately the address was wrong. we tried to find his house but couldn't find it. We had already checked two apt. complexes. We decided to say a prayer. Sister Cedillo said that as soon as i started the prayer, she knew where he lived because she had seen his motorcycle while proselyting before. Sure enough, we found his apt and he was there. I know it was an answer to our prayers and i'm sure his prayers as well. We are excited to teach him this week!

I don't what this to be too long but the week was full of positive experiences with families that are prepared for the gospel! i'm looking forward to this upcoming week! I still feel unprepared to teach these lesson but especially in spanish. I can practice them and it goes alright but i get nervous because I know that this is more than a happy way of dealing with our beliefs. It is all a reality. God lives....right now! and so does His son who is the savior of the world. What a blessing it is to know and feel that time and time again. I do have a testimony, President! Thank you for you and your wife's example of living the gospel! I loved hearing from both of you at the training this week! Hoorah for Israel!

Hermana Burrup

Monday, June 11, 2012

June 11, 2012

Her first email from Vegas!

My Family!

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY, DAD! I gave mom your gift and card before i left so i really hope you like it and know how much i love and admire you. Thank you for your wisdom and support. My mission president said he would pray for you and your health as well :) specific prayers bring specific blessings!

Thank you Mom, Dad, Janae, Jon, and Nicole for the emails. It's amazing how much i love reading what you have to say. I included my letter to the mission president.... honestly, i don't really know exactly what i should include or say because they didn't tell us very much. Just know that i'll get better at things as i go. Hopefully that will be true of much more than letters to the president. so, it has been a great first couple of days. Wednesday night we did some street contacting and the second person we talked to, mark, gave us his address and number. Then Thursday night we did some street contacts and the 3rd person we talked to gave us her address and number. So, my own little joke is that 1 in every 2-3 people in Las Vegas will let us teach them. That might be a slight exaggeration. We've already had people run away from us, shut their blinds, make commitments while their drunk, change their names, pretend like they've never met us, and one guy, totally cholo, wanted to talk to us about all his tattoos. Las vegas is quite the place! :) i'm the driver and our area is absolutely huge. Because we are the spanish sisters we cover 3 stakes and who knows how many English areas. At least 6 English areas. Anyway, we have a gps because the area is huge and we get lost. So, i just follow the gps. we'll just say that the strip is absolutely absolutely off limits and we almost accidentally went there twice on the Sabbath trying to find David's house. It was funny but we were so close to the strip that sister cedillo and i were a bit panicked. Basically, the majority of main streets will all take you to the strip so we have to be careful.  it was pretty funny though. The scriptures really are telling the truth when they say that the devil will carefully lead us all to hell....that is the strip in case your wondering :) and Janae i'm not in "nowhere land" there are plenty of people waiting for some Spanish speaking sisters to come knock on their doors. I'm actually in the mission office right now so my address is the same one. 

to answer some questions, it's really not that hot here. it's warm but not too bad quite yet. our apartment is great. We have lots of cockroaches but oh well. the branch is small but great and incredibly welcoming. They all couldn't believe that i spoke spanish. The last blonde sister that served in the branch apparently had a lot of trouble with the spanish. my bike is still in the box. We are taking it to the ward mission leader later this week. President and Sister neider are the most optomistic people! they are excited for each of us personally. They told us that they prayed us to this mission and are thrilled to have us. i already love them both! Sister Cedillo kind of has a high pitch voice. She is the queen of spanglish and willing to work hard with me! the only thing that i questioned her about is that fact that we get to do zumba on thursdays because the members bring their friends. i was bad at zumba before and i assure you i'm worse as a missionary because i'm trying not to listen to the music. I talked to sister cedillo about it and we have special permission from president for zumba. kind of funny though. 

 Anyway, it's been really busy here but i'm loving it. we do work with the members a lot and they help us a lot too! Almost every neighborhood is gated to we can't get in without the members. almost always, we are told to leave if we try to knock doors. it's kind of hard because some say we can't be there and others don't. i'm making mistakes but i'm learning a lot too. we met a family of 9 at a bus stop. Raven and Isaac. We talked to them for almost 20 minutes and by the end when we bore our testimonies, i felt like they could feel the spirit and they wanted to know more. I'm excited for them! unfortunately, they speak english so they are a referral. It's kind of a bummer that all english investigators that we find are not ours to teach but it's a great advantage that we can talk to almost anyone because we know both languages. We are teaching a recent conver Martin and preparing him to serve a mission. Martin is kind of my motivation right now because he gave up a lot to join the church and he has incredible faith! There are a lot of people like martin that simply need help finding the truth. Missionary work really is incredibly important! working with the ward this last weekend i learned a lot. President bednar said that the release as a full time missionary is only a call to a lifetime of missionary service. how neat is that!? I love it! I'm so glad i have another 17 months of the best work on earth!  I love you all!

Hoorah for Israel,

Hermana Burrup

ps - jon and nicole, i'm way jealous of your chacos. Wear them out and tell me about your adventures. Nate, no more tantrums. Christian own your finals! you are almost done! 

She included her letter to her President.  Here it is:

Dear President Neider,

You told me the truth! The Nevada Las Vegas mission is the BEST! It has been a great first 5 days. Saturday we had our ward activity to promote member missionary work. It went very very well! i think they felt the spirit, had fun talking about their missions and went away from it excited to be more involved. Sister Neider's comments were perfect as well. yesterday in sacrament meeting one of the speakers told the whole branch about her comments. Yesterday i met the ward. We gave talks in Sacrament meeting and gave the lessons in gospel principles and young mens. it was a great opportunity to get to know the ward better and to let them know that i am ready to work and excited to be here. One thing that really impressed me as i prepared my talk was the importance of missionary work. If i don't want to do missionary work than i truly don't understand how vital it is nor the absolute love that God has for each of His children. Right now i feel very optimistic and enthusiastic but i've been told that the rough days will come. I think feeling the spirit testify of missionary work as i read my scriptures and as i boldy bear my testimony has already greatly blessed me.  Sister Cedillo is a great trainer. I'm learning a lot from her and the way she teaches and the way she interacts with people. thank you president for being inspired to give her to me! Our recent convert, Martin is doing very well. we are doing a family home evening with his parents this friday. This will be our first time meeting with them. Sister Cedillo and i are excited to meet with them. I'm praying right now for a family to teach and i have faith that my prayers will be answered. maybe Martin's family will be the answer. We have several potential investigators but i have not met any of our progressing investigators yet. I'm excited to meet them and i'm excited to get going with the potentials we do have. One potential is Alma. She is married and she has one daughter. She seemed excited to meet with us again and very open minded.  I am confident that if she, or any other person, truly understands the gospel she will have the faith and desire to change her life through faith, repentance, baptism, and confirmation. President Neider, I am so blessed to be on a mission here with Sister Cedillo under your direction. I'm not sure if i'm doing everything perfectly but i have a great desire to share my testimony with power and conviction because i do have a testimony of the restoration of Jesus Christ's church! God be thanked for the people here and the opportunity to share with them the greatest message on earth! Thank you President Neider! Hoorah for Israel!

Hermana Laurel Burrup

She has arrived!

Sorry I'm a little slow in posting this.  But her mission president sent this email the day after she arrived in Nevada.  I didn't put the whole email in, just the fun part that tells us about how awesome she is :) I have no doubt she's loving it already!  Hopefully we'll hear from her soon and then we'll know when her preparation day is and more details on her area.  She's a beautiful Hermana, no?

I am happy to inform you that Sister Burrup arrived in Las Vegas with a smile on her face and a wonderful spirit. Thank you for preparing her to serve the Lord. We will do our best to build on what you have taught her by incorporating the principles of missionary work found in Preach My Gospel. When her service is finished she will be a stronger person with a deep commitment to the Lord. She will be serving in the Warm Springs Zone. ...

Your love and support are so important to her success.  She will be blessed as she is obedient and she will be happier.  Again we thank you for your faith in sending your sister out to serve the Lord.


Michael A. Neider, President

Hermana Burrup y Hermana Cedillo

With President and Sister Neider

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

June 2, 2012

Laurel leaves on Wednesday for Las Vegas!  She's ready and excited to get there.

Here's her letter, she's such a cute girl!

Dear Family,
I wish i could email every single day because there is so much good news to tell each of you. I want so bad to maintain a positive relationship with every one of you. One of my greatest fears before leaving is that i would not be able to find ways to show each of you how important you are to me when i only have 30 minutes online and limited time to write as well. I do have faith, however that the Lord will bless me with the ability to show you personally and individually that you are each important to me. in-laws don't exist. i love all of my brothers and sisters and i have learned priceless truths from you. Thank you for all that you do and are. it inspires me to become better than ever before!
I saw Jon this week! I'm a little bummed to leave the MTC based on the fact that i will lose my only face to face contact with my family but it will be ok. right after talking to Jon i ranted to my distric for 5 minutes about how great Jon is and how glad i am that i get to see him. It was funny because right after that, another elder looked at me and simply said "you get way too excited to see your brother. That's not very normal" it was funny but it made me realize once again that i have been so so blessed by you! Jon i love you! i'm excited to see you one last time before i go! Thanks for being great!
We taught Hely again! it was such a neat experience! I love that woman! Her husband committed to be baptised due to 2 of the best elders in our district and maybe the mtc. Elder Calzada and Elder Mojika. Hely recieved a blessing right after we left and we talked about the healing power of the atonement. she said it touched her heart so we shared with her the scripture in Galatians about the fruits of the spirit. We told her that we didn't just say nice words that made her feel good but that she had felt the spirit. It was wonderful!
Yesterday we had in-field orientation. It was a very positive experience. It was all day and a good portion of it was review but the spirit was present and i was really impressed by the number of missionaries that go out every single week! i want to, as we have been encouraged, to be a part of the greatest missionary force the world has ever known! The need is great for the gospel but even greater are the blessing that the Lord has if each of us utilize the gospel! I'm so blessed to be a part of this work!
So, i wasn't sure if my President Neider knew i was coming next week or if he was actually expecting me in another 6 weeks. I talked to some people and they called president Neider. Basically, President Neider said that he was aware that i was coming and very excited to have another spanish sister that can drive. I walked away from it feeling great! I'm so so excited to finally meet him! I'll tell you all about it, i'm sure!
Mom, i did get your dear elder about the tithing. i just got it after i emailed. don't worry, the mail does get to me everyday! :) No rush on the package but if you send it soon, could you send my black flats? Thanks!  Also, Janae, Congrats on the photo contest. You never know so you always try, right!? you should send me the picture because i'd love to see it!  Another random thing: Christian, an elder in my district has pointed lappells (?sp) and i think of you lots whenever he wears that suit coat. it makes me smile. christian, I'm sorry the whole basketball decision has been a little rough but i'm also glad you have some good experiences with it. It teaches hard work but being here in the mission field has also opened my eyes to how incredible important it is to prepare to be a missionary. You can call me ridiculous because i am but i may have already bought your birthday president. I'm only 5 months early :) it just proves how much i think of you and how much i love you and how excited i am for you to serve. I already have planned what i want to say in your card too. Christian, you're the best and you are going to be an incredible missionary IF you continue to prepare and do things NOW! I love you and can't wait for you!
One last thing: i fly out on Wednesday morning. I will have the chance to call you briefly. I'm excited to talk to you. i will call mom's cell phone. I'm not sure what time i will be calling. I think i fly out at 8:30 but that might be when i leave the mtc. there has been some confusion. Either way, i will call as soon as i get to the airport. It might be pretty early WA time but i'd love to call before Christian and Dad. leave. I love you all! Sorry the email is a bit random. i just wanted to tell you about so so many things!
Thank you Mom, Beks, Elder Jordan Tingey, Janae, Christian, Dad, Nicole, and Kirsten for the letters, emails, and dearelders.
Horrah for Israel!
Hermana Burrup
ps- Kirsten and janae, thanks for the funny stories about the nephews. I love love love the fun stories!