Monday, February 22, 2016

Temple Ground Breaking Ceremony

Ground Breaking Ceremony for the Barranquilla Colombia Temple

 This week lots of great stuff happened.  We had lots of big events!

Saturday we had the ground breaking of the temple.  They had a really cool ceremony in the middle of the day.  We had Elder Juan A. Uceda, a General Authority Seventy and president of the South America Northwest Area come and speak at our Mission Conference.  He spoke to the missionaries in the city and talked a lot about helping the investigators to talk less and do more.  We had a great discussion.  He came down from the pulpit and spoke to us in the audience.  It was really cool.  He is our area president, here for the temple ceremony.  That was super cool.

We took investigators to the ground breaking ceremony for the Barranquilla Temple.  Even though the temple grounds are in our area, we had to go to the church building to watch it, because you had to have a special invitation to attend on site.  There were a lot of less actives that went on their own free will.  It was crazy.

Sunday we had Hermana Silvia's baptism.  It was awesome!
Hermana Silvia
We had the ward mission leader baptized her.  It was right after church.  Saturdays don't work very well for baptisms, because no one from our area can go.  No one has money for the bus.  So we just did it right after church.  We'll confirm her next Sunday.
Brother Parans baptized Herman Silvia
Brother Parans, from Washington, he's misplaced here as the white guy among all the brown people.  He organized the baptism, which was super awesome, one of the best baptisms I have sen here.  We had all the people from church all come in the room.  The RS President gave a talk and did some really great things for her.  The Bishop and one of his counselors spoke.  We had a bunch of investigators there. There were seven new people that came to church that day, and they all came to the baptism.
Hermana Silvia and her family
After the talk from Elder Uceda, we went and tried to practice everything that he taught us. We met an investigator named Elvis.  Elvis is the husband of a wife and family that are all members.  Lots of missionaries have visited with him, but no one has met his need.  So we went there, and started talking to him.  He's never wanted to pray. He won't pray.  He doesn't want to do it with us.  He says he prays by himself. But he doesn't do it with anyone else.

So first we started talking to him about the Plan of Salvation. We were discussing temples and the power to seal.  We talked about prayer.  We asked him to pray, but he wouldn't do it.  So we knelt down on our knees and asked him if he would have a group prayer.  We asked him if he would say it--ask if the priesthood was really restored and if the power to seal families was really here on the earth.  But he said, he didn't feel comfortable and wouldn't do it.  So we said we would do our individual prayers on our knees.  So that's what we did.  He had his own prayer.  And we prayed that he would accept it.  We prayed that he would feel the spirit and that he would feel the spirit and know that what we were teaching was true.  We all knelt there praying silently for a couple of minutes. We just prayed for him, while he was praying.  In that moment, he got up. He looked at us like, what the freak just happened?  He tried to describe what he felt, but he just couldn't do it.  So we talked what the spirit felt like, and what that means.  He said that he felt a hot and cold feeling at the same time.  Something he has never felt before. We talked about prayer, and had him read with us from Alma 32. We encouraged him to keep praying. We told him to share with his wife what he felt, and told him we would come back next week.  That was a really cool experience that really impacted me.  He felt the spirit.  The power of prayer is something I want to feel every single day.
My new companion
This week my companion, Elder Saona died (had to return home early from his mission).  He had some problems with some mental stuff, family stuff, lots of stuff.  So he had to go home early.  It was pretty sad.  Now I have a new companion, Elder Chaves. He's actually from the same group as Elder Ramirez.  So He's already had one transfer, and I'm going to finish his training.  He's from Colombia in the center of the country.

Brinley, I'm sorry you broke your arm! That's actually pretty awesome.  I'm definitely proud of you, Brinley.  I hope you keep doing awesome stuff.  But next time you've go to have a better story. You've got say you were in a fight at school, and you broke his face and your arm.  That would be a better story.  Ha.

I love you guys! I hope you have a great week.
Love you,
Elder Burk

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