Saturday, December 31, 2016

Good Bye 2016 and Hello 2017

It's been a several months since I last entered anything on our mission post.  Last time was in August when I had my second Lymphectomy which came back not like we had hoped so two weeks later on 15th August I had a single mastectomy and two lymph nodes removed as well as reconstruction was started.  I was to be in the hospital two days and 24 hours later they surgeon who is an amazing woman and surgeon sent me home as I was not experiencing any pain.  In fact, through all three surgeries I never experienced pain, not pain medication; discomfort at times yes but nothing to warrant pain medication.

This cancer journey has been a blessing and I am grateful for what I and Elder Morley and my family have learned that our Savior atoned for each of us individually, the Atonement is real, personal; he chose to take what pain I should have experienced so I could recover and heal quicker and continue on in His work.  I am humble and grateful beyond words for his eternal, personal love.  Each time I partake of the sacrament it had become so personal to me, He did do it for me, for you.

I am now 4 1/2 months since the surgery, we were able to at five weeks continue our mission visits and teaching.  I will have my implant the end of February.

We passed our year on the 28th December, it's gone by so fast, we have six months left and we are wanting to do all we can inviting others to come unto their Savior.  We have been visiting a young couple with a now a two year old darling, active boy for 11 months now. She had been taught the discussions but just couldn't understand and connect what was taught to her so the Elders asked us to visit them and read the Book of Mormon with them and what a testimony it is to see it open up hearts and minds as she now has an understanding of the gospel and the scriptures.

In the summer we had a feeling to repeat the discussion but this time to invite her husband to sit in on them.  He is a member and holds the office of Teacher but has been less active for years and had picked up some habits but a great young man.  Since we have given them both the discussions he has quit his tea drinking, they are attending church and with the help of former and current Ward Mission Leaders, she has set her baptism date for 4th February 2017.  She has such a testimony, she never had any word of wisdom problem, no immoral, she was pretty much living the standards of the church.  We love this young couple and he was afraid when his wife gets baptized that they wouldn't see us anymore but we assured them they will see us seeing they will be working towards a temple sealing in 2018.

We have also been visiting and teaching under the direction of the bishop an older couple in their 60's, she's a member and he lost his membership several years ago and has never made an excuse to why, he took it and paid the price.  He is such a humble man, he knows the gospel but his bishop asked us to give them the discussions as well which we have.  We still visit and always leave a message.  They too have become good friends with us.  When I was down with my last surgery, she was wanting to see me but that night was busy packing for her early flight out but then a knock at the door and there they stood with her famous peanut butter chocolate chip cookies.

We have had many opportunities to visit and teach many in our stake; some accept the invitation to come back and others not but we stay in touch with them and they know we care about them.  Christmas time was a good time to visit each one and take them a little goodie, many sweet times with many of them.  We are visiting two families with the Elders, love these young men as we feed them lunch every Tuesday then correlate our work with them.

We are serving as District Leaders since October and enjoy our couples in our district.  We enjoyed attending 6 of the 8 wards Christmas parties which gave us an opportunity to mingle with the ward members.

Now on  a personal note.  We have two grandsons serving missions.  My youngest daughter's only son William is serving in Scottsdale Arizona and will be out 6 months next week.  He has grown so much  and has had many baptisms.  He was hit while on his bike but was protected; his left wrist was inured but after a couple of weeks with a brace on it he's fine.  The guy driving the car did't stop as they Elders had the right of way and luckily he was not going fast.

Our other grandson, Kyle who is the only son of my second son just arrived in NY NY North Mission on the 27th December, the mission posted pictures of the group arriving in NY and it was so fun seeing pictures of Kyle. Both of these boys have grown up together and now to share in serving missions.  Our family gatherings are a bit lonely without them but they are also a blessing.

I bear testimony of the truthfulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  He is our Savior and Redeemer.  The Atonement is real, it is for each of us.  I know without a doubt Joseph Smith was and is a prophet who was called and ordained int he pre-existence to bring forth the restoration of the gospel and of  the Book of Mormon.  I know the Book of Mormon is the word of God that it contains the fullness of the gospel.  Reading it this year has witnessed to me that it was talking of our times as I was compared what I was reading and what was going on in our world.  It is so clear that if we strive to be our best and live the commandments we will be blessed but those who are rebellious and fight against the truth will be destroyed.  We know the end and who will win and like Elder Holland has said, why wouldn't you want to be on the winning side?

We were blessed to have Elder Ballard speak to us in December, how blessed to be in the presence of an apostle of our Lord.  We have been so blessed in serving this MLS mission.  We have been able to still interact with our family, attending concerts, our family gatherings, farewell, setting apart.  This is truly an inspired mission for seniors.  As Elder Morley and I reflect back on our call, the Lord knew we needed to stay here for if we had been called away from our home I would not have been diagnosed early with my cancer as I was, it would have spread so I am so full of gratitude to a loving Heavenly Father and his son, my Savior Jesus Christ for their tender mercies.

I hope and plan on being better at keeping this blog up to date for the next 6 months.  A belated Merry Christmas and a Happy 2017 New Year!

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

11 July to 2 August 2016

It's been awhile since I wrote in my blog as I had surgery on the 11 July and again 1 August.  In early June I was diagnosed with breast cancer; Ductal Carsonoma in-site cancer, a non stage nor is it non evasive.  It was in one location only which I am so grateful for.   On Monday 11 July I had a lumpectomy to remove the cancer tissue but with the pathology report coming back saying there was one small area which the margins of safety was not removed so yesterday I had a re-lumpectomy which that area was removed.  I will start five days, six weeks of radiation treatments the latter end of August.  I am grateful to all who has cared for me at Timanogos Hospital and for Dr Jennifer  Tittensor.

Our missionary work has slowed down to keep my lack of energy pace but we have been able to pray and be guided by the spirit who we are to visit and teach for now.  Our couple who she is a member and he is working his way back into membership; we continue to teach them.  The wife has just retired from working.  His application for re-instated into the church is at the First Presidency office and he waits so humbly and patiently to hear from them.  So many blessings have come to this family including their son and wife.  Their son was out of work for over a year and has been blessed to have a job at an airline in the IT department.  He's been serving in the Elders Quorum presidency and this past Sunday was sustained and set apart as the Elders Quorum President.  When we visited his parents this past Sunday on 31 July, he and his family were there.  If they are there when we visit they always sit with us, beautiful couple.  He is endowed and his wife is not but they are working towards that time when they will be sealed as an eternal family.  We have become good friends and love them so much.   I have seen how the gospel changes peoples lives through them.

Our other young couple we have been reading the Book of Mormon to had a flood in their basement apartment; we finally were able to visit them Thursday 28th July, we had a wonderful visit with them, they have had some hard challenges in the past two months.  I asked them if we could start back with them in reading the Boo of Mormon with them and they agreed.  We also feel that her husband who is a member but holds no priesthood that he needs to be with us all the time, that maybe he is feeling left out seeing it's his wife they taught several months ago.  We have a new set of Elders and tonight, 2 August, Ray along with the Elders will start reading with them again and invite her and her husband to have the discussions again.

Also on the 28th July, we visited a darling young couple with one daughter, I wanted to visit them as their last name is Romrell.  I am related to Romrell's through my dad's mother and her family who came from the Channel Islands after being taught by John Taylor before he became the prophet.  His great great grandpa is my great grandpa George Romrell.  He doesn't know a lot about this family so I was able to tell him how they came to Utah and how many of them ended up in Sugar City Idaho where he was born.  He mentioned he was given a VHS tape someone made of the Romrell family, but he can't play it and doesn't know where it is.  I told him I had mine transferred onto a DVD which I will load him, he was excited to be able to watch it.  He is an airline pilot so he has crazy days off.  He is also excited to know more about his Romrell family.  Family history and missionary work go together and I love both of them.

Our districts and zones were changed at the first of July so for our first district meeting with Elder and Sister Hicks, they had us at night and had a wonderful lesson on finding those to teach.  They sang happy birthday to Ray as it was his birthday that night of 22 July.  Our assist to the president for senior missionaries was there, Elder and Sister Van Orman.  They served homemade ice cream afterwards.

We finished our temple preparation class we taught for 7 weeks, it ended up with our two young adults, and Sister Nelson but she had to miss the last two lessons so we'll teach her in her home later this month.

This week I will not be going out to do missionary work but Elder Morley will with the Elders and some ward mission leaders.  Our Stake Presidency is amazing, they are so supportive to us an the Elders. 

Sunday 31 July, we had a 7:00 AM meeting with President Raines, his counselor over missionaries President Duncan along with the two high councilmen as well as the Elders and us.  We split into two groups and for 20 minutes visited with a bishop and his ward mission leader going over non members, less active, non baptized and prospective elders.  We picked up six new families to visit and hopefully teach as well.  The Elders picked up a lot.  President Raines was concerned as we and the Elders visit a lot but not a lot of teaching.  The meeting was very helpful.

On a personal note again.  On 5 July, my grandson William was set apart as a full time missionary, he entered the MTC on 6 July and flew to his mission on Monday 25 July to Scottsdale Arizona which the temp was 112, he wrote saying it was brutally hot.  He has a good senior companion and they are on bikes which is good for him seeing he has ran track for the past six years ant his will keep his legs strong.  They have two baptisms this coming Saturday the 6th August.  He has grown so much spiritually in such a short period of time and yet he's kept his humor.  It's humbling to have a grandson serving same time we are.  We have another grandson who will be serving something in the next couple of months.  I got word from my oldest sister that her granddaughter received her mission call to the Scottsdale Arizona mission, she and William are second cousins and have never met so this will be exciting for them to meet doing the Lord's work.

I want to close bearing my testimony of the love of our Heavenly Father and our Savior.  I have learned this past month how powerful prayer is, how many prayers in my behalf I have felt.  I have nothing but gratitude that this cancer was found so early and it's not life threatening.  I am so grateful for the Holy Priesthood and those who honor it and exercise it in ones behalf.  I have felt nothing but gratitude and humbleness through all this.  I have felt peace from the beginning that I am in the Lord's hands and His will will be done.  I know the Gospel of Jesus Christ is true, I know what we teach is true and living the gospel is the only way to happiness not only in this life but for eternity.  I am grateful to be serving our mission together.  I am looking forward to joing my companion again in this great work next week.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

27 June to 10 July 2016

How times flies when you are in the service of others.  on Tuesday 28 June, we had the Elders over for their weekly lunch, this is our time with them alone to coordinate with them of those in our stake they are visiting and or teaching and we are visiting and or teaching.  Next weeks is transfers and we will probably lose at least one of them who has been with us for the past six months, Elder Fairbanks.

We had dinner with the Reis family in our ward; she is a member, served a full time mission on Temple Square and then visited Germany and fell in love with a wonderful young man who is not a member.  They have a 4 year old daughter and a two year old son.  They had invited us over for a BBQ.  We were told by Sister Reis that her husband didn't believe in a God but as the time with them went by, he and Elder Morley had a wonderful visit discussing a variety of subjects but always coming back to the subject of the world around us.  He mentioned that recently he goes out at night and looks up at the sky and sees all the stars, moon, etc and wonders about a supreme being. 

Before they were married they discussed how their children would be raised and it was decided in the Mormon faith.  They have prayers, family home evening, he comes to church at times and is taken by those who bear their testimonies to the truth of the gospel and know it's true, he said he can feel what they say they believe.  He's like science, likes things proven to him.  The spirit in their home and lives is very strong and sweet.  We are welcome to come back again.  They are leaving for about a month to visit family out of the country so we have decided to wait until they come back home to visit them again and give a lesson to him. 

Our couple whom we have been reading the Book of Mormon with for the past few months had their basement apartment flooded so we have not been able to visit them a they are staying with the husband's mother in another town but I stay in touch with her via texting.  We hope to get back with them as soon as they move back in.  At first the owners were being stinkers and didn't want them back but the flood was not their fault, it was aa water pipe which burst, they are good renters and the place is always clean.  We are glad they will be moving back in the apartment soon.

On Friday 1 July, we had our District Meeting with Elder Morley and I doing the teaching on the subject of helping those whom we teach recognize the spirit and we as missionaries have the spirit with us. 

We met with our couple where the husband is working his way back into the church, he's met with his bishop and stake president and now it's in the Lord's hands.  He is so humble, they are such sweethearts and have grown closer together.  They thank us for challenging them to have prayers together, they have them at night then when she retires the end of this month they will be able to have them in the morning as well.  They said that has brought the spirit into their home stronger than it's been.  We have become good friends with them as well.  We feel so blessed to be a part of their lives and this path they are walking.

We also visited on Friday 1 July, a recent widow, Sister Baker.  She has taken care of her husband who has been bedridden for the past several years, he passed away last week.  She is at peace but misses her husband.  Her daughter from Kearns was there with her, our visit was enjoyable.

Saturday we had the opportunity to help a new neighbor move in next door to us.  A week before we helped a new neighbor move in across from us; both families are active.  This latest move in drove all the way from Washington D C with his brother-in-law.  His wife with their four young children and her mother will fly in tomorrow night, his wife has never seen the house except in pictures.  He said he felt very strong they needed to move back to Utah even though his job back east offered him much more money to stay, he said it still wouldn't be enough to allow his wife to stay home if they tried to get into a bigger place to live.  They have been living in a two bedroom apartment with four children ages 6 down to 2 years old.  It's great to have active, faithful members move in to help build up the kingdom.

Sunday 3 July, we decided to attend all three hours of our own ward which is always nice to see our ward members.  We met and visited with a new family who has moved from Arizona, again, they were prompted to move here and to this area, they too are active.  We then attended the 6th ward's fast and testimony meeting at 1:30 PM.

We gave our fourth Temple Preparation class to our two youth, our one adult sister had let us know her family was having a BBQ and the couple not sure what happened.  We are so enjoying teaching this class to those who really want to learn more of the temple.

This week has been really slow as many are out of town.  On the 4th of July in Provo, Utah at he Provo Freedom Parade, the Utah Orem and Utah Provo missionaries, young and senior were invited to walk in the parade or the seniors could ride.  We opted not to participate as we have walked in that parade a few years ago with our stake float.  The crowd gave very loud cheers as the missionaries came by.  Our Elders McHood and Fairbanks came by later with sunburn faces.  Talking of Elder Fairbanks, he was transferred to Pleasant Grove, we are blessed to have Elder Westphal from Ohio.  he and Elder Fairbanks were in the MTC together.

Tuesday night, 5 July, we drove to West Point, Utah to see our grandson William be set apart for his mission to Scottsdale Arizona.  He was given a very powerful, full of promises blessing.  I am still trying to wrap my head around not being able to see him for two years but then I remember we'll be serving missions at the same time as he and his cousin who will be going in the next few months.  William entered the MTC on Wednesday 6 July, he was ready to go. 

With our grandson William at his mission setting apart
We had Zone Training meeting on Friday 8th July, it was packed with so much, we had prayed that we would be taught things which would help us teach better and be better missionaries and it fulfilled that need. 

We met with our weekly Friday afternoon couple and gave them a lesson on Grace.  The spirit was strong and at the end there were tears.  We have grown to love this couple and they love us.  It's so wonderful to see the Atonement bless the life of one who is willing to submit himself to the Lord..

Saturday 9th July, we held a BBQ in our backyard with our two new families and invited the neighbors on either side of the one across from us, one was able to come, they are less active but their children are involved in church activities.  We had not really met the husband as he is very quiet but he and Elder Morley sat on the lawn swing and had a delightful conversation.  The other family are non members and would have been there except they had a family reunion.  We also invited our dear friend Kristy who is a widow since February to join with us as well seeing her home faces ours and close to the other homes as well.  It was a wonderful, enjoyable evening, getting to know one another.

Today, Sunday 10th July, Elder Morley had asked me what wards I thought we should attend today and with a lot of thought and prayer I told him I felt we should visit the 3rd ward at 9:30 AM and the 7th Ward at 11:00 AM in another building.  The spirit knew we needed to be at both places.  The talks were wonderful, we came away spiritually fed well.  In the 7th Ward, they had us stand at the end of the meeting, we thinking they were going to call us up but the counselor told the congregation what our roll is among each ward and to use us as they reach out to their neighbors.  After the meeting the same counselor came to us and asked us to speak in September.  The talks were on Integrity, again so spiritually fed.

We look forward in visiting and teaching and inviting those of our Heavenly Fathers children to come back, come back and bask in the gospel.  I am so humble that the Lord called us to serve this mission.  I know God lives, I know He knows each of us and has a plan for each of us.  I know our Savior has a great love for us.  I know we have a living prophet on the earth today, apostles and the fullness of the truth is upon the earth.  I know the Book of Mormon contains the fullness of the gospel and witnesses of our Savior, Jesus  Christ.  We are so blessed to be living in this day a age. 

We taught our 5th temple preparation lesson tonight on why symbols and about them.  Wonderful spirit was there.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Week of 20-26 June 2016

It's been quite the week, visited a few families again, with the summer here many are gone on vacation or have other activities to do.  Other senior couples and full time Elders are having the same thing happening, their teaching pools are down. 

We have been teaching a temple preparation class on Sunday night, we just finished lesson 3 of 7.  Two of the participants is a young lady who has received her mission call and went through the temple for the first time almost two weeks ago, she was able to share her feelings and experience and looks forward to the rest of the lessons so it will help her understand the temple better.  The other young person is a young man who is preparing for his mission, great spirit about him.  Another person is a widow who is our neighbor, she is so darling.  Then there is the couple who had come once together and the wife came alone last night.  Her husband struggles with how he see's church members act, not separating their actions from the gospel.  He's a good man and we'll keep reaching out to him and his wife.

We gave a FHE lesson to a family  we have been working with.  The husband is in his mid 40's, been on a mission, a few years ago had a heart attack and has other medical problems including obesity so he doesn't get around too well.  He doesn't hold a job but his wife is working full time.  They have four beautiful children from 8-17 years old.  There is a lot of negative going around starting with the dad and trying to force the kids to like pray or sit in a certain place.  Once they got it all settled I gave the lesson on Choices taken from President Monson's four minute General Conference talk in April 2016 and another talk on your four minutes by Elder Gary Stevenson in 2013, it was a 10 minute lesson which I showed a 1 minute video on choices by Elder Ridd of the Seventy.  Their 11 year old had made brownies for dessert.  I pray that this will help each one in the family to think of their choices.  They are a lovely family but I feel with the dad's health problems and the mother being the sole bread winner it's taken a toll on the family, oh, by the way, they are living with her father who is single so he is not quite about them living there either.  We will keep visiting and praying for them.  Elder Morley did challenge the father to hold FHE next Sunday and we'll check with them to see how it went.

We have appointments every day this week so we are looking forward to all the visits.

Yesterday was a sweet Sabbath day for us as grandparents.  My youngest daughter's son, William has received his mission call to serve in the Scottsdale Arizona Mission.  He spoke at his mission farewell yesterday on the Restoration of the Gospel, did great.  He told us how he's always wanted to serve a mission but then a 1 1/2 years ago started doubting, this past year he really pondered and made the decision he really wanted to serve  a mission.  He mentioned about two missionaries who taught his dad in California and if it wasn't for them he wouldn't be here.  He thanked his friends for being good friends, his parents for their example.  For his mom encouraging him to run with her as he has ran track at school for the past six years, I will miss not seeing him run cross country, indoor and outdoor track but will look forward reading his letters.  Serving our mission along with him and his cousin who  will be going later this year.

His Stake President spoke for a few minutes asking William to stand beside him.  William is known in the ward and friends as Iron Will.  He has amazing endurance on Trek a few years ago and on the priests Sons of Helaman which they climbed Mount Baldy, at each stop William would always be the first one to that area then would encourage the other boys they could make it.  He then told us how over the years he has pondered about Meekness, what is meek?  He said while William was speaking the spirit bore witness to him that William is Meek, that is what meekness is.  He was very emotional as he spoke which many of us were emotional as well. 

Elder William Cannon
called to serve in the
Scottsdale Arizona Mission

His father, a good man in the law enforcement, had gone less active, today has touched his heart and he said it's time to come back so when William comes home from his mission he can attend the temple with him.  His parents were married in the temple, when he started working UHP he stepped off the path of activity, but such a support to his family which I grateful for.  Missions bring miracles to so many, family, strangers, wards, so many of  God's children. 

I am so grateful for our mission, for our son's and daughters-in-law who have served and now for our grandchildren who are making that choice to serve Heavenly Father and His children.

I so enjoy working with the Bishop's, Stake President and counselor, high councilmen over missionary work, our young Elders, Ward mission leaders and the members of the wards in the stake.  The gospel is so true.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Monday 20 June 2016, Way too long since last post

It's been way too long since I posted back towards the end of April.  Between the mission and family life it's been very busy so here goes the Readers Digest version.

The Lord's work is moving along.  On Saturday 30 April, we had a Utah Orem Mission special meeting with Apostle Elder Rasband and Elder's Todd Hansen and Christensen of the Seventy.  It was an amazing meeting to be taught by an apostle.  Before the meeting began Elder Rasband along with our mission President and Sister Killpack shook hands with each of us, 170 young Elders and Sisters and 52 senior couples.

Sister Killpack bore a beautiful testimony as did President Killpack.  Elder Todd Hansen spoke from Chapter 11 from Preach My  Gospel inviting those we teach to make commitments.  Elder Christensen spoke on you and your calling and serving members.  He said when President Monson announced the missionary age change in October 2012 General Conference that most who were listening missed something very important that he said, he said that for the members to work with the full time missionaries in helping their neighbors to come unto Christ.

Elder Rasband spoke telling us that this mission along with two other missions in Utah are the strongest in the church, in attendance, tithes and fast offering and sending their son's and daughter's out on missions.  He also mentioned how blessed we are in Utah to have senior stay at home missionary couples, it's been a tremendous blessing in the missionary work.

He opened it up to questions and answering period the last two hours which was so good to hear the young missionaries ask good questions.  He talked and asked about the worth of a soul from D & C 14,15,16,18, he invited us to be Divinely Bold and always follow the first prompting and Endure to the End.

We have had several contacts with several people within the Stake, mostly one of the spouses have gone inactive.  We have taught and finished just last Friday 17 June with a couple whom he is working his way back into the church, his wife has stood by him and what love they have for each other.  We taught them all the missionary lessons including the new one on temples and family history work which on that lesson their son and daughter-in-law were there and they sat in on the lesson.  The son has been through the temple and one a mission but his wife has not been through the temple and is working her way to be prepared to go soon.  She is very much involved with family history work.  He has been out of work for several months and has been wearing on him.  The following week when we visited we were told that their son had gotten a good job with an airline, they were thrilled.

During one of the lessons, I felt impressed to challenge them to have prayers together.  She still works for a few more weeks so she leaves early and goes to bed early but they took the challenge and they said the spirit in their home has increased since praying together.  They also took the challenge to talk to their non-member neighbor and ask them if we could visit which they agreed to.  We visited with them and had a wonderful visit.  They are Catholics, they love having Mormon neighbors as they are quiet and decent people, they invited us back for us to tell them about our beliefs.

We are teaching a temple preparation class in our ward on Sunday night, one of the couples who said they would come have not come which saddens us, the husband has been on a mission but both are less active, he was excited to be invited but for some reason they have not come, we have visited them and reminded them of the class, but maybe they aren't ready yet.  We have had an enjoyable time with a young couple with three children come, a young man getting ready for his mission, a young lady who has received her mission call and a widow neighbor of ours.  It's exciting to see them interested and doing the reading assignments.

Mixed in with the mission are family blessings as well.  I was able to see my youngest granddaughter Emilie play one game of soccer which she is very good at, she is 10 1/2 and defends well.  Her brother William received his mission call on 19 June but didn't open it until two days later so family and friends could be there.  He didn't want to stay in the United States and wanted foreign speaking, he read his call and he has been called to serve in the Scottsdale Arizona Mission, he enters the MTC on 6 July, from that day he had just 45 days to get ready.  He said for the past two weeks he had Arizona come to his mind often.

He runs track and I was able to watch him in his final track meets, he missed going to state but now can see the wisdom in not going.  I have watched him for the past 6 years run cross country, indoor and outdoor track and it's been so enjoyable to see him grow. 

Our May was busy with mission and end of school activities with family.  Went to granddaughter Nicole's orchestra concert, she is in the Chamber Orchestra, she has one more year in high school.  We had three grandson's graduate this year from high school starting with Jeremy from American Fork High on 27 May, so proud of that young man.  His family lived in Korea for five years so he had not had any American schooling until he came back ten years ago, he has worked hard.  I then flew to Las Vegas on Sunday night the 29th May to attend a grandson, Jarrett's promotion from Elementary to Middle School.  I was able to spend time with my daughter and family which was wonderful.  While in the airport I ran into Brad Wilcox and got to talk with him. 

I flew home from Las Vegas on 1 June and the next day we had two more graduations, Kyle from West Jordan High, it was held at the Viviant (Delta) Center at 10:00 AM, we arrived early to see him and get pictures, as soon a his name was called and he walked we had to leave to drive to Weber State's Dee Events  for William who graduated from Syracuse High.  So proud of these four grandson's.    If that wasn't enough, Ray's cousin whom he is close to and who he and his wife had served an MLS mission being released last summer passed away from a fall he had a few weeks earlier.  I had known the family since I was young as they were in my stake and the father was in our stake presidency, I had gone to school with this cousin as well as friends with the sister my age.  He and his wife had visited us in the fall when we received our mission call and had spent four hours with us showing us what they had learned on this mission and gave us so much which has been a help to us.

We have had wonderful District meetings, Zone Training meetings and Zone Conference with Elder Ringwood from the Seventy speaking to us.  We have the Elders in our area over for lunch each Tuesday, this way they get fed and we can coordinate with them as well.  I will miss these two when either or both are transferred.  We keep reaching out to those who have strayed off the path, inviting them to come back to their Savior and receive all the blessings he has for them. 

This mission is so wonderful, it was a huge challenge for me at first but as one loses themselves in the lives of others the love of the Savior comes and you know what you are doing is so right.  I will do better in keeping up the blog. 

Monday, April 25, 2016

Week of 18-24 April 2016

Another great week!  I so enjoy being able to attend the temple each week, we did family sealing's this past week, always sweet when you provide those sacred, eternal ordinances for loved ones.  having the Elders over for lunch on Tuesday is so enjoyable, it's our time to connect with them and work out families to help them with or visit those they feel we would be a blessing to them.  They are young and so full of the spirit of missionary work, they never stop.

Wednesday the 20th, we had our mission interview with Elder and Sister Van Orman who his is the assistant to the president and is over the senior missionaries.  A wonderful visit with them, talking about the needs, concerns and desires of our mission call.  Our little couple whom we read each Wednesday in the Book of Mormon had to cancel for a family activity and we had nothing else going so I was able to go to Syracuse Utah and watch my grandson in his track meet, he is a senior so this is his last year, I've been going for six years at his track meet.  He just submitted his mission papers and was sustained to receive the Melchizedek Priesthood last night at his stake priesthood meeting with his father with him.  He will be ordained an Elder sometime this coming week.  He has a cousin who is also preparing to submit his mission papers.  It's humbling to see our grandchildren serve the Lord and be worthy to do so.

We had our District training meeting on Friday 22nd with us doing the teaching on how to work with our stake and ward leaders.    It went very well, so well we never did get to the second part so that will be saved for our next time to teach.

Also on Friday afternoon we met with our couple who the husband is coming back into the church, we taught him the Restoration.  He is very knowledgeable and so humble and looking forward to being re-baptized.  That night, we visited our couple who are wanting another child, they had some news to share with us but also concerns.  Because of the nature of their situation I have chosen not to mention what they talked to us about.  We encouraged them to continue to attend church and go back to the temple as well as both of them receive priesthood blessings.  They are such a beautiful loving couple and just so desire to have more children.

We had Ray's daughter from San Antonio Texas come for a visit, well, it was to help her daughter clean out her dorm at BYU, finishing her first year and return home with her mom for the summer.  It was so wonderful having them with us for just a few days.

Sunday, we had another good meeting with the ward mission leaders along with the Elders and the Stake High Councilmen over missionary work.  It sure helps to have open communication with these ward leaders.  We were asked by the Elders to take over a family they have been visiting.  It's a mixed family with four children, and when they visit just the children are with the Elders, the parents opt out of being with them so it is their and our hopes with us being a bit older that we can encourage the parents to join in.  We will be using the church video's with the children and keeping the visits short.

The Lord's work continues to go forward.  We might get discouraged but I heard this yesterday, don't give up, the Lord isn't finished with him or her or you.  The gospel is true, Heavenly Father knows each of us, our  Savior does too and oh, how they love each of us.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Been too long, 21 March to 17 April 2016

Time flies!  It's been almost a month since I have written anything, so sorry.  Some weeks are busy and others slow down and the week of the 21 March was one of those slow weeks.  We continue to read the Book of Mormon with out young family, he is a member but less active, his wife is not a member.  They have a darling 18 month old boy who keeps them busy.  She loves reading the Book of Mormon, she said that what the Elders have taught her combining that with the Book of Mormon has made all the difference.  Truly it is the corner stone of out religion and bears such a witness of our Savior and of his doctrine and teachings.

We've been working with a young couple in our ward who has three daughters, they are living with her mother for now until they get a house sold and finances in order.  We had not met the husband until Easter Sunday when they attended church, then visited with them a few days later and asked them if they would attend a temple preparation class.  They have agreed and we've been asked to teach it starting in mid May, our bishop is inviting others to attend as well, with those who have never been to the temple or those who have and it's been along time.  We are looking forward to teaching this class on such an eternal matter.

March has been missionary month for our ward, we were asked to participate with Elders Edlinger and Fairbanks who serve in our stake and two other stakes to be on a panel Easter Sunday with the young men and young women asking questions as well as Bishop Larsen.  The spirit was sweet and had very good questions.  On Tuesday of that week they youth were to go out two by two, some had to be in three's, to members home for dinner then they were to give a discussion on the Restoration.  We had offered if we were needed.  That afternoon we were visiting our Sister Balle who is related to Elder Morley when our bishop called asking us if we could have three young men to dinner and they give us the lesson as the family they were to go to had to cancel, this was at 4:00 PM, dinner at 6:00 PM.  What a blessing to have these three young priests in our home, we served them lasagna, green salad and peach cobbler with ice cream.  They then taught us the lesson on The Restoration and did so very well.  They brought a sweet spirit into our home.

On the 30th March we had Zone Conference.  Before it started we watched a documentary on the Provo Tabernacle when it burned down, when President Monson announced it was going to be rebuilt into the Provo City Center Temple and the completion of it, brought back the beautiful day of it's dedication.  President Killpack is a spiritual giant.  He instructed us very well doing out calling and inviting others to come unto Christ.

A Brother Gonzales from the missionary department spoke as well telling us that the Lord will increase u sin  our calling.  He also taught us well.  I had a thought of our young family we are reading the Book of Mormon with in what we need to do to encourage them to attend church and to let her know she doesn't need to know everything before she is baptized.  Ray and I participated with the Highland district in singing a special musical number.  These Zone conferences are also nice to be able to visit with the other senior couples.

Also during this same week we were able to visit with three other families, a Sister who is a widow with a son who served a mission and has been home a year and a 15 year old daughter, they get slacked in their church attendance every so often.  Another widow who is raising two grandchildren, tends three other grandchildren.  We had the ward mission leader along with us and he will bring her needs up in ward council that she needs home teachers and if someone in the primary could pick up her 11 year granddaughter when she is unable to attend due to her illness that flares up.   Then the last family we visited is a couple who both have been on a mission, has a four year old boy and has wanted more children but unable to, the husband has gotten upset with God and has quit going to church.  We had a wonderful visit with them, they told us about their desire and frustration in trying for another child.  I then told them that both Ray and I oldest daughters both couldn't have children but adopted.  Ray had something he was going to tell them but when he opened his mouth the spirit spoke through him and he just said, "I feel I need to suggest and challenge you to go back to the temple."  They said they would and they have gone back to church.

General conference was marvelous, being taught by our Prophet and Apostles and other leaders, especially by President Monson when he talked on choices and the choices we make determines our destiny and to choose the hard right and not the easy wrong.  We are so blessed to have the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ once again upon the earth and to have a prophet who receives revelation, to have the truth once again on the earth and the holy priesthood.

We were asked by a sister in our ward who is so faithful in her covenants, her husband who has served a mission has chosen to go inactive.  She had a 17 year old daughter who is an amazing young lady, we've adopted her as our granddaughter and I get hugs every time I see her.  Her son who is 12 years old has started to question the church and doubt the truth so she asked us if we would visit him.  We decided to visit the three of them on Sunday 10 April after he had gone out collecting fast offerings.  I talked of President Monson's talk on choices, then Ray told them of his conversion when he was 17 years old and how his mother told him that she might have to live with one Mormon, who was her husband, but not another one and she told  Ray if he was baptized he was no longer welcome in the home, he was baptized and he had to leave the home, but in about 6 months her heart softened but when he accepted his mission call she again had him leave.  The spirit was so strong and all three of them had tears streaming down their cheeks.  I felt impressed to tell the young man how important him being a deacon is, how he represents the Savior, and how it became personal to me when I couldn't attend church for about 6 weeks and two priests came to my home and gave me the sacrament, I learned how personal the Savior's sacrifice was for me.  I told him that his calling so more important than anything else, more important than even the President of the country.  His countenance had changed from the first time he had sat down to when we left.  We saw him this past Sunday in church and he was able to pass the sacrament to us with a small grin.

We have a new elder as of last week seeing it was transfer week, we still have Elder Fairbanks and we received Elder McHood who had been serving in the Orem area, wonderful young man.  We have them over for lunch each week to coordinate who we and they visit.  It is so humbling to serve with these young men and now we have two grandson's who are putting in their request to serve a mission after they graduate from high school in the next month and to know how their lives will be blessed as well as so many others.

We lost one family we had been reading the Book of Mormon with for the first two months of our mission, he has chosen his other way of life and yet he knows the Book of Mormon is true.  When one submits to the desire of the flesh and the evil one, they have to work hard to break away and he is not willing to do so, so the Elders and us will walk away for now but the ward mission leader will try to still work with the family, especially the father.   He was so close, had such a testimony then chose to step into the evil ones territory.  We just have to move on to those who are willing to listen and want to come back to the Savior.  

Last Friday t he 15th, we had our Zone training meeting, it consist of two districts, ours and Highland/Alpine.  Once again, we were well taught seeing this type of mission we are on is just about 2 1/2 years old in Utah.  We see the ward leaders are learning more how to use us in teaching, helping mostly the less active members of their ward.  We have a wonderful, spiritual giant of a Stake President, his counselor who is over missionary work in the stake and the two high councilmen as well.  We are so supported in this great work but especially supported by the Lord himself.  It's a mission I had never desired to serve but I am grateful the Lord called us to represent Him and reach out to his children.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Week of 14 March to 20 March 2016

We took Monday the 14th off to do things around the house and to do  planning for the rest of the week.  Tuesday we attended the temple and did family sealing's which are always so special.  I am grateful we are able to attend the temple as it is such a blessing and helps to be more in tune spiritually.

We visited a daughter-in-law to her in-laws who are living with her and their son, they have used their health as an excuse not to attend church but they are able to shop Wal Mart, their son is concerned.  We have tried contacting them several times and the last time Ray talked with them they told him that they would call us.  We wanted to visit with the son and his wife to let them know what we had done and what was going on.  I have learned what enduring to the end means in many ways and this is one way I have learned, continue with your activity.  I see one in our ward who can hardly walk with a cane but he comes and teaches the High Priests.  I see those who can hardly walk or in wheelchairs attend the temple regularly, they are great examples to me to Endure to the End.

We met with our you family in our own ward, we talked about she and her husband taking the temple prep class.  Her husband wasn't home but she would talk to him, I told her that there was no obligations, it's a great way to be taught what they can teach in preparation in becoming temple worthy and receiving their temple blessings, that made her more at ease as her husband doesn't like to be pushed into anything.  We visited with her a few days later and she had talked with her husband and he is willing to take the class, she also invited us to visit when he is home which is a big step for him.  Even though he serves in the ward, he is sporadic, great couple with three beautiful children. Our bishop is going to call a teacher to teach the temple prep class and invite others to attend.

We also had our monthly meeting with our Stake President, the counselor over missionary program in the stake, the high councilor and one of the full time elders as they were on splits.  Poor Elder Fairbanks was so sick he just sat there, his companion was with a ward mission leader at a family's home in the stake, he was also sick.  This is the first time they have been sick being away from home, so he as sat away from the rest of us.  I love our Stake President, he is so amazing with such spiritual insite.

That same night on the 15th, we met with another couple in another ward in the stake, they have both served missions, have one 4 year old boy who is darling.  They have gone inactive as at least the husband has become angry and upset over them not being able to have another baby.  In our conversation they opened up to us and really poured their hearts out.  We were able to tell them about both of our oldest daughters who couldn't have children but adopted.  I told them of Elder Neal A Maxwell's council to my daughter which was to continue to pray, read scriptures, stay active and attend the temple often which they did and they were blessed with their daughter.  They asked us if we would keep them in our prayers which we will be so happy to do.  Ray had some thoughts he was going to say but the spirit guided him to council them to become temple worthy again and attend the temple.  The spirit was so strong in their home, beautiful couple just hurting.

On Wednesday 16th we were able to meet our new grandson, number 29,  Ray's oldest son and his wife.  He is so beautiful, so new from Heavenly Father.  We then had our neighbors kitty corner from us over for dinner, they are non-members, have had some bad experiences when they lived in Park City but the two years they have lived in this neighborhood they have so enjoyed it and have a different perspective of Mormon's.  They have two daughters and one son.  He use to work for a garage door place until last December when he had an accident and his one foot and ankle was crushed.  Ray and the other neighbors have helped them with snow removal, getting garbage cans out, yard work.  The Lord sure does provide opportunities to serve others.   We then read with our young couple afterwards, she is loving the Book of Mormon now she has some understanding and we help her to understand it.

We had a great District Meeting on Friday 18th, the couple who gave the training lesson did it on the Proclamation on the Family.  Took each paragraph and read an explanation by Elder Merrill J. Bateman from a talk he gave.  It was suggested that we use this to teach families when prompted to do so, it's such a powerful proclamation.

Saturday we were able to gather with my kids and their families for our Easter family party, not all were there but who was there, it was wonderful being with them.  This mission gives us this opportunity to spend time with family which I am grateful for, for this is what the Gospel of Jesus Christ is about, eternal families.

Sunday the 20th was the day the long awaited Provo City Center Temple was dedicated, what an out pouring of the spirit.  It is like our own lives, we sometimes have parts of our lives in ashes but our Savior can rebuild it through the Atonement and His Grace.  I am so grateful for temples, for eternal families, for the Gospel of Jesus Christ, for my testimony and membership, for our Savior and Redeemer Jesus Christ and for the Holy Ghost.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Week of 7th March to 13th March 2016

We had a busy week in visiting those we had met before, reading the Book of Mormon with our young couple and meeting and visiting new people in the stake.  On Monday the 7th was my oldest son Mark's birthday.  Tuesday 8th, we attended the temple which was very sweet, we were asked to be the witness couple which is always special.  Had the Elders over for lunch, they did splits so we had one of them, Elder Fairbanks and his District Leader Elder Evans.  We met with a member then was able to go to our grandson Nathan's band concert that night in Riverton, he plays the sax and oh, he is good, he's in the 8th grade, plays in the Jazz Band as well as the Symphonic Band.

We were able to meet with out neighbor who lost her husband three weeks ago, she's such a dear friend, we miss her husband as well.  Met with a member couple who are friends with a family who lost their 19 year old daughter last August in a car accident.  They have not been active for years and they were so touched by how the ward members came forward to help.  They are still struggling with her death. so the neighbor will invite them to dinner and ask if it's ok if we come as well to just meet them.  The gospel of Jesus  Christ and the Plan of Salvation teaches us that death is not the end.  i also met with a three new families, one is a single mom with three boys living with her parents.  She knows they ought to attend church, her sister lives in the next ward over and is active as are her parents, it's just going and being single.  I was able to tell her about me being single with five children.  She wants us to come back and give her and her sons a message.

Friday the 11th, we had a great Zone Training Meeting.. It's always nice to be able interact with the other senior couples in the Zone.  That night, the Orem Utah Mission held it's semi annual music fireside at the Alpine Tabernacle in American Fork, Utah.  The Young Ambassadors from BYU sang several numbers as did some of the Elders and Sisters, a couple of them bore their testimonies.  The highlight was listening to Brad Wilcox who spoke on \why we believe in Jesus Christ.  He said that we believe in him because Joseph Smith saw him face to face, talked with him face to face.  All Christians are taught to Follow Him but we are Lead By Him as it is His church, He is the head of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  The place was packed with missionaries young and old and with investigators and members, etc. Was a wonderful, spiritual day.

Saturday, Elder Morley was dressed in his suit, looked out our front window and saw our neighbor kitty corner from us raking his front yard.  In December he had an accident which crushed his foot, he is to be off of it with no weight on it yet and yet he was out there raking, oh, he has a walking boot on.  Elder Morley changed his clothes and helped him rake, he wouldn't stop so Ray just raked faster.  We invited them over for dinner this coming week which they accepted.  They are not members and when they moved here they didn't want anything to do with Mormons as they had moved from Park City and didn't have a good experience with Mormons there which is way too sad.  But, they have found out that we are like we say we are, they have come out to neighborhood block parties.  Ray and the Bishop have kept their driveway and sidewalk clear of snow along with doing it for other neighbors.  They are a wonderful young couple with three children, they just need friends and love.

Sunday the 13th, we had our regular meeting with the ward mission leaders then attended a ward conference which have been so powerful in the talks on the Sabbath Day and the Sacrament which our Stake President brings in with his talk.  We visited two families that afternoon, one in our ward who are living with her mother for now with their three children. The wife is excited to have us work with her and her husband to help them get to the temple.  The other couple is a young couple, he's been on a mission, they have one four year old son and have not been able to have others and they has been discouraging to them so they have gone inactive.  They are a delightful couple, she teaches guitar at her home.  We will be seeing them again this week.

Then to end the Sabbath day, Elder Morley received a text with two pictures with it from his oldest son, their little boy was born that afternoon, a few weeks early but he's healthy and so beautiful, lots of dark hair.  This is their first one, makes 29 grandchildren for us.

This week has been a very blessed one, I guess each missionary has their good and not so good weeks but I will dwell on this one and go forward this week to make it just as good or even better week.  I am including a quote from President Heber J. Grant which I came across this past week.  We as members of The Church of Jesus  Christ of Latter-day Saints are all missionaries, we don't need to preach, we just need to live the gospel as we have been taught.  Show kindness to others, reach out and help

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Week of 29 February to 6 March 2016

i wrote in my last blog about taking our neighbors to the temple open house on Monday 29th February.  That evening, we met with the Jenkins family, we had stopped by earlier and had talked with Sister  Jenkins father whom they live with, he is quite the story teller but an interesting one, he is single, his daughter and husband with four children are living with him for now as they had hit hard times.  Her husband has health issues, she works full time with a son 17, daughters 15, 11, 8, beautiful family but we have not met Brother Jenkins yet.  We visited later that evening with Sister Jenkins and the girls, her son was at work.  Sister Jenkins is an amazing, positive woman.  They are members but with her having to work on many Sunday's the children won't go to church without her and the dad's health is not where he is able to go most times.  She voiced her desire to attend the temple open house seeing it's the last week of it.  After we had a delightful visit, Elder Morley sent an email to our Stake President as he works for the church in the temple department and one of the secretary's takes care of the open house tickets.  He requested so many tickets for Wednesday at 3:30 PM, within one hour we had the email with the tickets to print out from the secretary.  We have an amazing stake president.

Tuesday 1 March, the full time Elders had lunch at our home as they do most Tuesday's, this is a good time to plan with them and to catch up with families they need us to visit or to report to them of those we have visited.  We then visited our sweet widow, Sister Balle who she and Ray are cousins and I knew her years ago as we were in the same stake in Kearns.  We gave her a copy of a recording  Ray did with a Vicar in England while he was a missionary there. The Vicar had been doing research on the Morley line as they were one of the first families in that area in that church.  Thanks to Ray's son Dan several years ago who was able to copy it off from the old reel to reel and put it onto a CD for him.  As usual, we come away being lifted by Sister Balle.

Wednesday 2nd March, we went to the Provo City Center Temple open house with the Jenkins family minus their father who didn't feel that he could walk around that much.  It touched each of them.  Sister Jenkins realized that she needs to get back attending the temple and she needs to talk to her boss and arrange for her to have Sunday's off to go with her children to church, he said it will take a lot of praying but she knows this is what she needs to do to keep her family together an on the right path.

We were to have read with our young couple who has one darling 16 month very active boy but they had sickness but we did visit the Peterson's who were going to move this coming Thursday to their new home.  He served a mission in Taiwan, his wife is also from there.  With all the move in's from all over the world here in Lehi, there are several from China who speak English but the vocabulary of the Mormon faith, they don't understand sometimes so the Elders and ward mission leaders need help and even though the Peterson's are moving out of the area, he is still willing to come and help when needed.

On Friday the 4th of March, we had our District Meeting and the training lesson was on Listening, how often we talk too much and not listen to those we are teaching or visiting.  Brother Byers also took us through the time when the sons of Mosiah met up with Alma after their mission and how they were instruments in the Lord's hands in bringing many  of the Lamanites into the Gospel, unto their Savior.

That evening we joined the 4th ward in their table game night.  Members bring many board games and you just pick a table which game you would like to participate and play and for us it was getting to know the ward members of that ward better.  We met a couple of non-members who loves to mingle with the saints but doesn't want to join the church, not yet anyway.  This is a perfect example in reaching out to all in our neighborhoods not matter if they are members of the LDS faith or of another faith, we are still all children of God.  Very enjoyable evening with lots of snacks.

Ray's daughter from San Antonio Texas, along with her husband and oldest son flew in on Saturday 5th March to visit their daughter who is going to BYU, she needed a little support in life, she's doing great at school, just life.  They stayed with us Saturday night, attended our three hour block with us then visited her mom until dinner time then ate with us and flew back home.  Was nice to have them here even if it was a short trip.

Sunday afternoon, we visited a Sister who is single, she has home a son who served a mission and has been home for a year, he's going to school and needing a job, so we asked the ward employment specialist to contact him.  She also has a 16 year old daughter.  They are active, their Bishop thought just a visit from us and a message would be nice for them.  We showed them a short video of President Uchdorf talking of our worth as sons and daughters of Heavenly Father and don't let anyone tell you you have to be this way or that way.  That message was what they needed to hear.  The mother grew up in the stake we just moved from in Orem, we know her parents.  Beautiful family.

It's been a wonderful week.  I am so grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ, I know it is true, for it ws upon the earth when our Savior lived and it was restored again in its fullness through the Prophet Joseph Smith.  Thomas S Monson is our modern prophet today, called by God to receive revelations for not only the church but the world.  I know God lives, I know Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer, he sacrificed his life for us, I am humble and grateful for his perfect love for us.

With the Jenkins family

Monday, February 29, 2016

Week of 15 February through 29 February 2016

We had a slow week 15th February.  Our family we have been reading the Book of Mormon with came down with the flu one at a time.  On Friday 19 February, my grandson William turned 18, will graduate this June and is planning on a mission this summer.

We attended our District Training meeting in the morning on 19 February, we were the teachers this week.  We taught on the Grace of God.  Most people believe that the Lord makes up after all we have done but that is not so.  He has already paid the debt, he paid it all, there is no after all we can do He makes up the difference,  Jesus makes ALL the difference.  We in turn are to show appreciation for what Jesus Christ did, by using it to live our live like His.  It went very well as there was a great discussion among the other couple missionaries.

We then attended the funeral of our neighbor and friend the afternoon of Friday 19 February, it was hard to say bye to him but because of the Plan of Salvation we know we will see him again and still have this friendship we had here on earth.  His death has touched many lives of his wife's family as they are not members.  Her parents are grateful that she belongs to "our" church as she has seen the outpouring of love and support towards her daughter.

We met with our neighbors in back of us and to the east of us, an older couple who have been active all their lives but due to health they now are unable to attend church.  The Johnson's are a delightful couple, very attentive to each other.  We had a wonderful visit with them, they told us they use to serve at the MTC for the senior missionaries playing the roll of investigators, we asked them if we could practice on them and they were happy to do so, this way they will get some gospel lessons.

Sunday 21 February we had our usual 8:00 AM ward mission leaders meeting along with the Elders and was given a few names from some of the ward leaders to visit.  It always boggles my mind when it's a couple who has been married in the temple, taken those sacred covenant's and the husband has served a mission and they have  gone inactive.  Just don't understand, but they are the ones we reach out to and help t them to understand those blessing that await them if they come back to Christ and honor those sacred covenant's.  We attended a ward conference at 9:00 AM,  The theme of all of the ones we have attended so far has been on the Sabbath Day observance.   Our Stake President spoke and this time he spoke to the females about knowing who they are and not to compare ourselves with others.  Also, it's ok to say NO, don't over schedule so much that we are frazzled.  Know that they are daughters of God who loves them and knows them.   The spirit was so strong while he spoke.  We spoke at 11:00 AM in the first ward which went well as we had three people come up to us and gave us names to visit including the bishop.

The following week was a bit more busy, we visited a couple of widows, they enjoy having the senior missionaries visit.  One sister had served a mission in England where Ray had served but a few years earlier, they had much to talk about.  Our visits went well that week.  We are reading with another young family, he's a member, she is not, they have stopped the Elders from coming for a while, she felt rushed but enjoys us coming once a week and reading the Book of Mormon with her and her husband.

Our other family we've been reading with since the first week in January has had to cancel for various reasons but one is that he went back into his old ways, back into a club and now he is not sure of anything he's been taught, trying to find excuses for his actions, he said he missed the atmosphere and enjoyed it.  The spirit about him has left him, it was there up until he went into Satan's territory.  One cannot have the spirit and step onto the evil side as well, one cannot serve two masters and I have seen this so clearly now.  We are sad over this, but it's about making choices and having agency but any choice one makes, one does not have control over the consequences.  I hope some day he will and his wife will put their desire to be an eternal family ahead of the worldly ways.

Our visits this past week has included a young man from the Marshall Islands who has been a member for a year.  He lives with a wonderful family in his ward.  We are working with him to get to the temple for his endowments.  He enjoys performing baptisms for those who have passed on.

Sunday 28 February, we attended our own ward for the entire three house block, we nice to be among our ward members.  At 1:30 PM we attended another ward conference which was another spiritual feast.

Today, Monday 29 February, we took our friend and neighbor who lost her husband recently, her daughter who lives with her and our neighbor to the Provo City Temple open house this morning.  The daughter is a non-member, she was really touched by it.  We had planned on taking her step dad as well a few weeks ago but that is when his health declined with cancer rapidly.  It was a sweet moment with them.  I am including the picture of us.

The gospel is so true.   I am grateful for my Savior Jesus Christ, for the Atonement and His grace.  For eternal family and friends.  Grateful for the scriptures, especially the Book of Mormon which testifies of our  Savior and of his doctrine.  I am grateful for a living prophet, even President Thomas S. Monson and the Twelve Apostles who are called to witnesses of Jesus Christ.

Provo City Center Temple open house with
Rita, Kristie and her daughter Bonnie, Sister and Elder Morley

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Weeks of 31 January and 7 February 2016

Ok, my last blog I put week of 24 February and it is suppose to have been January, sorry about the mistake.

These past two weeks have been busy and enjoyable.  As I wrote in my last blog, on Monday 1 February, Ray and I had our interview with our mission president, President Killpack who is an amazing spiritual giant.  I posted the picture of us he took of us in his office.

Each Tuesday, we have the Elders over for lunch and we discuss and plan with them as well, they are two fun, spiritual young men, Elders Edlinger and Fairbanks.  We continue to read the Book of Mormon with our family which the husband loves reading from.  He's made great changes in his life, his language has cleaned up and his temper as well, even the guys at his work has noticed the changes as he is a pipe welder and a good one, he's been doing it for over 25 years.  We love this family.

I was able to help a sister with her family history during the week.  On Friday the 5th, we had District Meeting which the couple taught from the Introduction of the Book of Mormon, that is the first page we read with those we read with or teach, it's so powerful and a promise.

Being senior missionaries, we have different guidelines from the young missionaries.  We were able to fly to San Antonio Texas on Saturday 6 February to see our first great grand child, Nicholas, he's so darling and such an easy going baby.  His father gave him a name and a blessing on Sunday.  We kept with out attendance on Sunday by going to two Sacrament meetings, the first one at 9:00 AM with Ray's daughter and family, we attended all three hours, the first since our mission started. Then we went back at 1:30 PM for the blessing of our great grandson.  It was so enjoyable being with Mindy and her family and having Neal's parents and grandmother there as well,  delightful time.  We flew home on Monday night.

It was interesting flying as many people would ask us if we were coming or going, we would tell them we're on our mission, then explain.  On our flight to Texas Ray sat across from an 18 year old young man who is religious and they had a wonderful discussion, Ray gave him a pamphlet and a pass along card and our card with our name and phone number on it in case he wanted to talk more about the church.  On our way home we sat by a young lady who is a member and has been a soccer player for USU, she asked if we could help with her parents who lives in Alpine, Utah as they have gone inactive.  At our next District Meeting we gave the couple who is in that area their name and contact information asking them not to let on it was their daughter as she preferred it that way.

We continued to read with our family, on the 9th we were able to have dinner with my granddaughter  Shilo and her family to celebrate her 21st birthday which was the day before but she was in Florida with a cousin at Disney World.

On Wednesday 10th, the Elders called us at the last minute asking us if we could meet them at a single sisters home as they are not able to be alone with a single sister.  This young lady had turned her whole life around and she is so loving the gospel and learning about it.  She has set a baptism date for Saturday 20 February.  By the way, she lives in the next stake over who doesn't have senior missionaries yet.

We've been meeting with each bishop in the stake to let them know we are here and available to help in anyway, some have given us people to visit which is always so sweet.  On Friday 12th we had Zone meeting which was wonderful, that night we met with another young couple whom we had met a few weeks ago, he is a member but inactive and she is a non member who has been taught the lessons but wanted to understand the scriptures so they asked for us to read with them once a week.  

Saturday 13th, we went on splits with one of the Elders and tried to visit two families which were not home so we decided to drop in one one of the couples whom one of the bishops had asked us to visit, the husband was home along with his younger brother who lives with them but his wife was on a trip to Taiwan, so we visited with him.  He's a returned missionary, they have been married in the temple but have gone inactive.  Ray asked him why, he said that when they got married they had a calling in the nursery and after a couple of years of it they felt that they needed to attend the gospel doctrine class so his wife could continue to learn more of the gospel.  So Ray said, so you went inactive?  H knows it's wrong.  His parents divorced while on his mission which really threw him.  It was an enjoyable visit.

Now seeing I am typing this on a Tuesday the 16th, I won't report this week except that today our dear friend and neighbor whom we have grown so close to fought to the end with his cancer and he was released today from his painful, sick body.  He has been such an example of enduring to the end, he and his wife Kristi served in the temple, he was in the High Priest Group leadership and he served others.  Ray had the opportunity this past Christmas to help his step son and another neighbor and neighborhood boys put their Christmas decorations up which was so small thing to do as they lights went with music.  Ray also helped take them down as Ron started to go down hill really fast the past few weeks.  We invited them to our mission setting apart in December and so glad we did and got a picture of us together which I will cherish.  We will miss Ron but so grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ, for the Atonement and knowing we will have that eternal friendship.   We were in the temple on an endowment session when I knew he had passed, I got a bit emotional but got in control quickly.  Until we meet again Ron, God Be With You!
Ray and I with our dear eternal friends, Kristi and Ron Wells
December 27 2015

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Week of 24 February 2016

I'm a bit late getting this post out this week, I was under the weather for 24 hours this past Tuesday but all is well again.

Last week was so enjoyable.  Sunday the 24th we started out at our weekly 8:00 AM mission leadership meeting, oh by the way, it was snowing that day as well.  We then met with a bishop in our stake which is so helpful as they get to know who we are and we get to know them.  We then spoke in our own ward, it was so nice being among people we know.  We then attended a ward conference at 1:00 PM then met with another bishop afterwards.  We were able to read with our family in the Book of Mormon which is coming along so well, the husband loves reading it.   We were then able to visit our grandson Jeremy for his 19th birthday and have cake and ice cream and sit and visit with them which was so enjoyable, lots of laughing with memories.

On Monday 25th, we met with our mission President Killpack, we know each other so it was just making sure we were doing ok and if we needed anything.  He also took a picture of us which I will post.

On Wednesday 27th  Ray received a text from the Elders early this morning asking if we were available to meet them at a single sisters home at 9:00 AM, luckily we were.  She is a young single mother of two darling young children.  She knew she needed to change her life around not only for her but for her children as well, she has a friend who is a member and told her about the church.  The Elders have been teaching her for just a few times and he is loving the Book of Mormon and loves learning about the restoration, the Plan of Salvation, she just can't get enough of it, she wants them to come by daily if possible.  Ray was able to explain a bit clearer on something the Elders were trying to teach her a bit clearer.

We then visited Sister Balle whom I knew in my former stake in Kearns in the 70's.  She and Ray are related through Isaac Morley who is both of their 3rd great grandfather.  We are sharing pictures, and other items with each other.  She loves the visits as she is a widow and a delightful person.  We also ready with our family again tonight.

Thursday, 28 January marks our first month on our mission.  We visited a gentleman in our stake who is coming back into activity, he lives with his daughter for now, he's delightful, has had some rough times in his life but is finding out that attending his meetings and paying tithing is helping him in so many ways.  The Elders called us this afternoon asking if we could meet them at a single sisters home whose granddaughter was baptized last year who is 11 years old.    The grandmother who is a widow and a member has custody of the granddaughter and her older brother,  Somehow the family has gotten lost in the ward as they have not been going to church for a while.  When we first arrived the young lady was all over the place, she was not connecting with anyone until Elder Edlinger held up a pamphlet and spoke the words, "The Restoration"  she stopped and came over next to her grandma and the Elders and listened and answered questions, she remembered what she had been taught.  I saw the light come into her eyes then her entire body came alive with the spirit, by the time we left she was glowing and had settled down.  We reported our visit to the Ward Mission Leader as they need primary and relief society and home teachers in their home.. We read again with our family whom we love so much.

Friday was District Meeting in the morning.   Ray and I took the afternoon off and drove up to the Olympic Oval to see our grandson William run indoor 2 mile which he came in second in his heat.  Left there and read once again with our family.

It is humbling to see the light of the gospel come into people's lives, to see them grow in their understanding and testimony.  To hear a father say he wants nothing more that to be sealed as a family for eternity and he is working hard to overcome a habit.  I have seen a change in a person's personality, one who use to swear and fly off the handle and now he has no desire to do any of it.  I have witness a young girl come alive when the spirit has touched her.  How I love the gospel of Jesus Christ.  The Atonement is real, there is nothing a person has done that can not be forgiven through the Atonement of Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Week of 18-24 January 2016

This past week has gone by so fast, here it is Tuesday night and I am finally writing my weekly blog.  Last week was wonderful!  Ono Wednesday 20th we attended along with 75,000 others serving missions for a World Wide Mission Broadcast originating from the Conference Center in the Little Theater where Elders and Sister missionaries from four missions were invited to attend, the rest watched it via satellite.

Elders Bednar and Oaks of the Quorum Apostles were the main speakers with other general authorities from the Quorum of Seventy and Sister Oscarson, Young Women's General President who is also on the missionary committee.  For two hours we were taught and instructed.

We visited a Sister Balle who is a member, 87 years young, we had visited her ward a few weeks before and they had introduced as, a woman came up to Ray asking if he were related to Isaac Morley as there was a sister in the ward who was and would like to meet him.  We met her on Wednesday 20th, when she opened the door I knew I knew her but wasn't sure where.  She and Ray had a wonderful time looking over the Morley family history as Isaac Morley is both their 3rd great grandfather.  She then mentioned she moved from Kearns after so many years, she lives in the basement of her daughter's home.  After asking her where in Kearns, we discovered we lived in the same stake, I remembered her, she was an amazing pianist, played for our stake choir each Christmas when presented a musical program.  Small world.

We then met the Elders at a home of a member whose father has moved in with her and her family for now, he's been on and off in his church attendance, had a sweet visit with him, Ray and I will visit him weekly and leave a message for him to encourage him to become worthy to go to the temple, his daughter loves him so much, his grandson is amazing as well, he bore a strong testimony of the power of prayer to his grandpa.

Thursday the 21st, we attended our first Zone Conference of 3 1/2 hours but oh, so worth it.  We again were taught and instructed by our mission mom, Sister Killpack and President Killpack, as well as Elder Van Orman who is over the senior missionaries as well as President McFarlane who is the Van Orman's stake president instructed us.

Our reading with our part member family is going so well, Ray and I both felt to skip ahead in the Book of Mormon to the words of our Savior when he visits the Nephites after his resurrection, this has been a blessing especially to the husband who is the investigator, he has so enjoyed reading the words of Christ as there are many of his teachings in the Bible which he is familiar with.  He was taught the law of tithing the other night and agrees with it.

On Friday I helped the wife, April in registering her LDS account so she could see her family on Family Search, she was really touched in seeing the names of her ancestors.   She added her own family's information.

Sunday's are very busy and this past Sunday was really busy as we have our weekly 8:00 AM meeting with the Elders along with each ward's mission leader and the two high councilmen assigned over missionary work and sometimes President Duncan second counselor in the stake presidency over missionary work in the stake,  Then it was off to meet a bishop at 10:00 AM then back to our ward for Sacrament meeting at 10:50 AM as Ray and I were speaking.  We had two young women speaking before us and they both gave part of my talk on prayer and being an instrument in the Lord's hands.  It was home for a quick lunch, call my grandson Jeremy and sing happy birthday to him then off to a 1:00 PM Ward Conference which was so good.  We met with another bishop at 2:30 PM then home for a couple of hours before we went to our family to read to them, home and dinner.  We then were able to drive to American Fork to my grandson Jeremy's to celebrate his birthday and have ice cream and cake and visit with the family which was so enjoyable, we swapped family stories.

The following picture is of our Zone Conference, this is the Northern group seeing we have a large group of senior missionaries, in fact our mission has the largest amount of senior missionaries that any other mission in the world with 52 couples, President Killpack is wanting a senior couple in each stake in the mission which would be 92.  We are in the top picture, second row in the middle.

Monday, January 18, 2016

18 January 2016

Another week has gone by and it's been a wonderful week.  We have so far two part member families we are reading the Book of Mormon with and explaining as we read, this has helped especially the non-member spouse to understand the scriptures.

On Saturday we were with the Markut family, the husband is being taught by the Elders.  After reading we visited then  invited the family to come to church on Sunday as we were going to visit that ward anyway.  The husband said he wanted to finish the Book of Mormon before he went to church, we explained to him the importance of attending at least Sacrament meeting.  He told us he would think about it and let us know that night.  He is one person who,when he gives his word he will follow through.  He's over come a lot of things in his life including Word of Wisdom challenges.

Ray received a call from him Saturday night telling us they would be at Sacrament meeting which they were, we met them at the Church building and sat with them.  Many ward members came up tot them afterwards to welcome them as they know many of their neighbors and love the area they live in.

Also on Saturday night, we had the Plett's over for dinner and invited Ray's oldest son, Rod and his wife Stephanie as Steve and Rod were good friends when they lived in Ferron, Utah.  They told of stories of their teenage years, we laughed so much.  Steve and his wife Tami have both gone through a divorce an have gone inactive.  Steve worked for Ray in his grocery store in Ferron Utah as a teenage and loved Ray, he taught him how to work and be loyal to the customers.  So when we moved last June to Lehi, we discovered Steve lived around the corner from us.  They both accepted callings this past week, he loves dutch oven cooking and will be the cook for the stake youth this summer on Trek.  Tami accepted a call to serve on the Compassionate Service Committee.  

The other blessing we experienced this week was with our young couple, Steggell's who has a darling 16 month old son is on the move constantly.  The wife is taking the missionary lessons from the Elders, her husband is a member and has been on a mission, in fact he knows Ray's cousins in Spanish Fork.  The husband has not wanted to pray vocally with his wife or with the Elders until the other night when we had finished reading in the Book of Mormon and Ray turned it over to him to call on someone to pray, he said he would pray, his wife was surprised and said, "Really?"  He gave a beautiful prayer.

We also met a few others, one in particular is a sculptor, he did the bust of President Kimball which is in the Conference Center and a couple of pieces on Temple Square as well as others.  He has a studio with Dennis Smith, another famous LDS sculptor, he invited to take us on a tour of the studio which we are going to take him up on.  He has just gone through a divorce and his two daughters who are over 18 are living with him.  Very enjoyable visit with him.

We had Zone Training on Friday, met the other Senior couples in our Zone.  This week we have a World Wide Missionary Conference on Wednesday, Zone Conference with our mission president on Thursday and in between meetings with bishops and Stake President and families as well as a couple of family activities.

As senior missionaries, our rules are a bit different from the young elders and sisters.  In the MTC and our mission, they have set three priorities which are: 1. Our health  2. Family  3. Mission.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Ray and I with Steve and Tami Plett
at the Provo City Center open house
5 January 2016

14 January 2016

Seeing that I am new at this Blogging, I am including some pictures of our MTC District, and of our visit to the Provo City Center Temple open house with friends Steve and Tami.  Steve worked for Ray in his grocery store in Ferron, Utah many years ago and now we live around the corner from them.

Our MTC District, Elder & Sister Poulsen, Elder and Sister Nielsen, Our morning teacher, Sister Emaes
Elder & Sister Morley, Elder & Sister Smith

1 January 2016
We ran into a former ward member whom Ray taught in Sunday School when
he was 16 years gold, Harrison Pope who just entered the
MTC two days before, we were both excited to see each other.