Write Me

Elder Burr
California Los Angeles Mission
1591 East Temple Way
Los Angeles, CA 90024



Monday, October 27, 2014

YES! Memorizing the baptismal prayer in the MTC finally paid off. This weekend I got to baptize our investigator Bo Yang. It may have taken 14 months to use those white pants we got at Sea Gull Books, but they were nice and crisp when I put them on, so all is good!

It was just a super funny and happy baptism. I will be honest, I was not sure if Bo Yang was ready to be baptized, he was just a little....off at times. But in the last 2 weeks leading up to the baptism, I have just seen him so happy and just a better person that by the time Sunday rolled around, I knew it would be fine. (I am still praying it will be fine though) He is just a little bipolar, BUT his family is a SUPER powerful family back in Beijing and his mom will check out the Church. Next Stop, the Forbidden City Temple 2024!! 

Oh man, giving a baptism interview was wild. I was super happy that the guy I was interviewing was super prepared. I had taught him 1 or 2 times before, but I really didn’t get to know him until the interview. The Chinese District is slowing down a little bit, so hopefully Elder Zhang and I can pump some fire into it and get it going again so we can have some more baptisms!

MOM! I met someone from Tuen Mun but I didn’t know where your house was, where is your house?? 

So I gave a talk in Sacrament Meeting (English- no worries) and the subject was "What was your favorite conference talk" and the one that I picked was "Lord, is it I" by President Uchtdorf in the Priesthood Session. So I picked that one because it is something I have had to apply a lot on my mission and it is something that I hope to apply after and that I can help the members here apply in their own live. For those of you who don’t wear suit pants and didn’t go to Priesthood Session, it’s about humbling ourselves and giving ourselves, not our neighbors, an examination. Too many times in my life have I felt that something pertaining to the Gospel was good for other people, but I was the exception. This was just the pride of the natural man talking. I also really liked that talk because it talked about the promised blessing of humble, sincere, self-evaluation is enduring and deep conversion. I especially like that part, because that is what it is all about, our individual conversion and our personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

Sometimes, it is hard to know what success is. Is it the baptisms, the number of lesson, the contacts? My mission President stated that "the success of a missionary is defined, not by numbers, but how deeply he is converted to the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. Then in the talk, Pres. Uchtdorf talks about a ward that had a high percentage of church attendance and home/visiting teaching, but after a while, 11 marriages had ended in divorce. He talked about on the outside they were all successful church goers and members, but on the inside, they had distanced themselves from the gospel. We can’t let these outward things gauge and define our testimonies and conversion, because then we will just be fooled into thinking we are strong and when the storms rage, we will fall. Now, I don’t have a perfect solution for conversion, but I know that repenting helps ALOT!! Humbling yourself, moving forward, changing, and most importantly partaking of Christ’s Atonement leads to deeper conversion. And then striving to have the spirit with us.

I am so happy that I can be our here, thanks for the package this week, it really does make me feel so happy. I hope everything is going well!! If you have time, send some pictures of whats going on. I will also start taking more pics!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Mission Life!!!

Aaahhh I am emailing at the Family History Library and the Sister next to me is crying, what do I do?!?!?! But hey, that's the mission life!

So, life is good in the mission. They split our area so we lost just about over half of our  investigators. We just handed them over to these other Elders. It was a little hard, but I know they are in good hands and I will hopefully be able to see them on exchanges. Oh man, being the DL brings all kinds of new interesting things to worry about in the mission life. Exchanges, collecting numbers, going to meetings, and people looking to me for advice. I was on the phone with these Sister missionaries planning an exchange lesson and I asked them, "If we are teaching a girl and we have no guy there besides us, can we still be there?" and they were like, "I don't know, ask your District Leader." And I was like" I AM the District Leader!!!!" hahaha That was a funny little tender mercy from the Lord. He is just reminding me that this is a first and foremost and a service opportunity, and next a learning opportunity.

So my area is only Santa Monica College. No more UCLA. But that's okay, It wasn't the same as being at USC, but it was a really nice place though. I will miss it. 

So SMC is really really, really small and people there are crazy! Most the people there are fresh off the boat. The Chinese program is not developed here at all, so it will be a lot like USC again, just building up from nothing. 

It's pretty cool to have a native companion! Elder Zhang is sick, he joined the Church when he was like 14 in China. It's good in the sense that he teaches me a lot of native slang, but it's bad in the sense half the time we don't know what each other is saying. His English is...minimal...but bless his Beijing heart, he tries!! 

We should have a baptism this weekend!! The guy is a little different, but I am sure baptism will be a step that blesses his life. I am also giving my first baptism interview this week, pray for me that I don't let any crazy people into theC hurch. 

So Darren and Wenqi! My RC's from wwaayyy back when. They are taking temple prep and will probably be sealed like 4 months from now!!! I am so excited!!! They are also applying for the Patriarchal blessing!! Those two make the whole mission worth it. Of course, every person I meet and teach makes it more and more worth it. I really am so happy that I came out. I really don't know who I would be without seeing these things. Thanks so much for your support!! If you guys have any material to learn Chinese characters give me a shoutout!!

Elder Burr 

Monday, October 13, 2014

Pressure! I feel Pressure!!

Transfers calls came. I am staying up here. But Elder Bria will be going down South to my very first area Torrance and Palos Verdes. My new companion will be Elder Zhang, straight out of Beijing!! He has spent the last two transfers in English so hopefully all that English fun didn't make him to disobedient. English areas tend to do that to Elders. I also got a crazy surprise, I am the new District Leader. I should have seen it coming. President must have sent me to the Arcadia and Irvine Missions for a reason. Oh man, this is going to be a wild transfer. Lots of new things coming up, lots of new experiences to grow.

This week I gained a testimony of developing Christlike attributes. So for the longest time, my companion and I have just been on the wrong frequencies. We were always rubbing each other the wrong way. So beginning last Monday, I was praying every day for 3 specific things that I could develop that would improve our relationship. And crazy enough, it worked!! This past week really was so much fun and so productive and so spiritual. It is so easy to tell and invite an investigator to do something, but am I doing those things myself? That is what I have to start asking myself more. We can't be content in this state we are in, we always have to be moving forward and upward. 

I don't know if I told you this, but I saw Meet the Mormons, that's a tear jerker for sure! You guys all live in Utah so you will probably see it, but maybe if you have a friend who lives in another state far from mainstream Mormon culture, have them check it out. Or if you have friends that hold stereotypes or misconceptions of the church, have them check it out. The movie answers those!

Well, have a great week everyone, pray for the investigators!!! 

Elder Burr
I think this is the Long Beach Temple?

Wednesday, October 8, 2014


Guys Guys this week was crazy! So, my District Leader told me we were exchanging on Wed. I thought nothing of it, until he started to drive outside of the mission boundaries!!! I was freaking out! haha BUT no worries, it turns out the Mission President wanted us to go to the Irvine Chinese Missionaries and have an "information gathering trip". I felt like I was a part of Star Trek/Seal Team 6.

It was such a weird experience leaving LA for the day. Things are a lot cleaner outside LA county. We went into Orange County and the Irvine Area. It was super cool seeing the green outside. haha We also drove past Disneyland. We passed an IHOP I remember going to when I did the Music School Tour. 

ahhh I have no time today because we had to give a Chinese family a Visitor Center Tour and we have a Return and Report Meeting, but love you guys! don't send me winter cloths!!

-Elder Burr
Irvine Elders

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

I got my BD back!!!

YES! The Bible Dictionary! I can continue my study of the battle of Gog and Maygog!! JK guys, I am not really all into that deep doctrine study, mostly because I am still trying to grasp the shallow stuff...haha my companion is writing a whole discourse on the lost/secret plates of the Jaradites.

Oh man, the nostalgia is coming in. The weather is getting a little crisper, and it is starting to remind me of the time that I first came into the mission. It really is freaking me out, my entire mission is going to go on repeat. I really don't want this to end! But don't worry, it is a long ways away, I am just dealing with the shock of the weather and after that I will be all good. 

This week we picked up an investigator, his name is Cao GeYang. SUPER COOL, he was just randomly contacted into, and it turns out that his cousin was baptized 5 months ago. His cousin is in Arizona and had been living with a Mormon family. Crazy!! I asked him why his cousin joined the Church, and he said it was because it gave him direction in life and friends! Dad, don't get mad at me for sharing this story, it may motivate Mom to get more foreign exchange students, but hey, if you go get a student, try to find one that has no friends and lacks direction in life. Ask the questions of the soul! (why am I here? where do I come from? Did we really land on the moon? Is Ronald Reagan still in office?) 

Everything is just traveling wayyyy to fast. BUT I love the influence that this Ward has been on me. What I have seen at this ward is that it is built on the foundation of some very solid converts! People are here that at one point were hard core atheists, anti-Mormons, non denom christioans, RLDS, it is so diverse. I really do love it. I know why Jesus commanded the apostles to go forth and preach to ever kindred nation and tongue, because this diversity makes the church so strong, that when the church is made up of people that fought and struggled to get here, it will be a church that will stand through all adversity, that won't fall into apostasy. I love that in the Bible, when the old prophets got discouraged because their dispensation was going to fall into apostasy, God showed him our dispensation, the LAST dispensation, that we will not fall, that we will stand and flourish, and I have seen that here in LA. I am so grateful to be a part of the Work of Salvation! I encourage everyone back home to get into it too. It's all the same work, we are all brothers and sister, there always will be lost sheep. 

I love you guys! Thanks for always supporting me!

-Elder Burr