Sunday, June 30, 2013

Goodbye And Mabuhay

The Mission Presidents Seminar at the Provo MTC was excellent. As one of the brethren stated, "we have been fed with a fire hose!" And that just about explains it too. The hours of information, instruction, and spiritual talks were very "Hydrating" and "Powerful." What a great experience. 
We drove home from the Provo MTC on Wednesday night and had an ice cream party with our children and grandchildren. We said our final goodbye to Karin and Ian and went to bed. I woke up early - nervous I guess - and we left Kellie's house in time to drop off Doug's truck and cell phone at his work and get to the airport by 9:30 a.m. When we arrived, some of the family was there to give us our last hugs and say goodbye.

Eighteen hours later we landed in Manila. I remember telling my husband that I didn't think the heat and humidity was that bad . . . then he reminded me that is was 12:30 a.m.
The Area Presidency was waiting for us. What a lovely sight to see them all smiling and waving at us.
Tired and ready to board a bus take us to a nearby hotel for the night. We stayed at the Shangri-La Hotel in Makati.
 There is a huge swimming pool just around the corner from this spot.
 This cake and a bowl of fruit was waiting for us in our room.
We were able to sleep-in which was very nice. Then we had a meeting with the Area Presidency and their wives. We took a picture of all the new incoming Mission Presidents by the Manila Temple. I love these ladies. We have all become great friends.
 The meetings at the Area Office ended at 8:00 p.m., and then we were welcomed and taken by President and Sister Stucki to the Cavite Mission Home. There we met the Assistants - our new best friends and companions. The transition would have been very difficult without them.
Looking over these pictures I can't believe where we have been and what has been accomplished over the last week. Wow!  
Before leaving my daughters home on Thursday morning, I went outside on her patio and sat alone with my scriptures. It was early and everyone was still asleep. I prayed and pondered about what was coming ahead for my husband and I, and I wondered if I would be strong enough to take on the challenge, and I was worried about the unknown days ahead. I opened my scriptures and looked on the left side of the opened book. Written there was a note to me
from a loving Heavenly Father. It said,
"For verily I say unto you, that great things await you." (D&C 45:62)
I have no doubt that three years from now we will look back at all the amazing experiences and miracles that took place while we served here in the Philippines, and realize that indeed great things did await us. Thank you Heavenly Father for this experience. 

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Setting Apart

On Friday, June 21st, Doug and I were set apart as President and companion/missionary of the Philippines, Cavite Mission by Elder Quentin L. Cook and Tad R. Callister. Four of our children and their families were there and we took the opportunity to take some pictures in the courtyard around the Church Administration Building. 
Here we are with 6 of our 8 grandchildren. Two more granddaughters will join the family in November.

The best part of my setting apart was when Elder Callister
told me that my experience in the Philippines will not be an
experience to ENDURE, but  to ENJOY.
I plan on doing just that!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Coincidence? I think not!

At the General Relief Society Meeting on September 23, 1995, President Gordon B. Hinckley presented "The Family, A Proclamation To The World". Believing that the family unit and the sacredness of marriage between a man and a woman is under attack, the Prophet and the Twelve Apostles brought forth this document in the hopes of making our homes "fortresses" against the coming storms of evil. The mothers and fathers who taught their children to believe and hold sacred the truths set forth in that document - and those who have framed and hung this Proclamation on the walls of their homes, are now the parents of the elders and sisters who are turning in papers to serve as missionaries. And these are not your every day, ordinary missionaries. We are seeing some of the most valiant, fearless, and obedient young men and women who are rejoicing in their turn to serve and hasten the work. Is it any coincidence that the Proclamation was presented 18 years ago? And last October, President Monson announced lowering the age of elders to 18 and sisters to 19? Is there any doubt that a Prophet really does lead and guide us as members of the Church of Jesus Christ? 

Helamen had his 2000 Stripling Warriors who valiantly fought against those who were trying to take away freedom, peace, and destroy homes and families. Today - in the 2000's - we are seeing the latter-day version of Helamen's army. The work my friends is hastening.

Coincidence? I think not!