Monday, June 28, 2010

I'm Here!

Wow! What a wonderful, not-even-a-week, week I have been having. My MTC district and I got in to Syracuse around 3:30 and met President Bulloch, his wife, and his two assistance. IT IS HUMID! We got some pizza and went over to the mission home in Whitesboro. What a beautiful area!

The next day we met our new companion. I have an amazing Trainer, Elder Call. He is from Orem, Utah, and has been out for about 6 months. We are in Syracuse (sort of the south-west part of town and 2 sister missionaries us north east with the campus and all that). WE ARE ON BIKES! or at least most of the week. The sisters give us the car on the weekends, which is a nice brake for our legs, but the rest of the time we are pounding it up on the bikes. The weather has been OK here. It has been sunny for a few days, but just recently it has been raining. I find that a bike picks up a lot of mud when it rains and white shirts love the mud. :)

I am so in love with this place though. It is diffidently a different culture. Many of the houses in our area are run-down and have porches out front that many people just sit on all day because they can not find work. It is sad to see sometimes, but it is wonderful talking with some of theses people and the humility and love they have for one another. We have amazing REAL people we are teaching right now. Ruth is a big black woman who is going through Chemo right now, but she knew the church was true even before meeting with the missionaries. She is so excited to get baptized, we just need to go over a few things before setting up an exact date.Ryan have been meeting with the missionaries for a while and is also so excited to be baptized. We are trying to get a date setup for the middle of next month. Thursday, my first full day out in the field, we were visiting someone that showed interesting in learning more, but they were not home. But just as we are about the got back on our bikes, their neighbor, Dominique, steps outside. So we talked with her, and she is very interested and wanted to read the Book of Mormon. Tonight we should be visiting her again. I am so excited for her!

Yesterday before church, I looked in the mirror and my lift eye-lid is swollen! I can see fine and it feels normal and everything, but it looks a little weird! I am not worried about it too much. It looks fine, and talking to people, just let it run its course. But what a great first impression for meeting the ward members! We have a ward and a young single adults branch that we share with the sister missionaries. What great people! the ward only have about 120 members that come and the branch has about 25. They are so nice. Sister Vise is a wonderful lady. She is a big black woman who takes care of everyone, including us us missionaries. She is even housing a kid name Cris, whom we been teaching. He is so in love with feeling the spirit, and I am so excited to see the change in his life that can only come through the gospel of Jesus Christ.

I have to go! But thanks for all the letters! You can use dearelder if you want to, but it cost $.44 for postage. Or just send it with the address I already gave you. I love you all, and hope you know how much I love you, but also how much I love serving the Lord here in this area.

Elder Shurtz