Our Eternal Family

Our Eternal Family

Saturday, February 20, 2016

February Activities, 2016

Too Long Since We Wrote
     We had a lot of things happening since we last updated the blog.  President Gibbons was released.  President and Sister Gibbons are wonderful people and it was sad to see them go.  They will be going back to Texas

     Our new mission president is Garth Hall from Rexburg, Idaho.  He was a successful college football coach at major universities through the country.  President Hall and Sister Hall are great. They have been making visits to each of the missionaries homes, getting tours at all of the historic sites, plus taking care of all of the mission business.  When they attended the Rendezvous play, where we preformed the Jed and Annie skit, they thought we did a very nice job on the stage.

     We have been given a new assignment for Rendezvous from the Jed and Annie part to the Thomas and Elizabeth vignette.  So we have been learning and practicing the new part.  We are really getting out of our comfort zone with this part because we are required to sing a duet.  We have been getting some help from sister Cluff who has taught voice lessons at the university.  This has helped but until we actually preform we will be extremely nervous.  The new vignette is where Thomas explains to Elizabeth that they will be leaving Nauvoo sooner than they thought.  Instead of leaving in April they will be leaving in February (two weeks).  Elizabeth has some major concerns about leaving there comfortable home in the middle of winter!  Well learning the lines, blocking, and the song has been an extra challenge.

     We have been called to be district leaders of the Joseph Smith Sr district.  We are joint leaders in this calling.  There are four couples in our district.  E/S Hopkin, E/S Taylor, E/S H. Skinner and us.
We have monthly/weekly assignments of: mission training meetings, Sacrament meetings, cleaning the statues, site boards, and cleaning the stake center.

     We took part in the Nauvoo exodus.  We walked and marched from the Cultural Hall to the Mississippi River.  I participated as a member of  the Nauvoo Legion.  We both represented family names of Cheryl's relatives who lived in Nauvoo. Royal James and Harmon Cutler,  Margaret McCullough, and Susanna Barton.  This was a very special experience.  The weather was cold but not as cold as when the saints left Nauvoo.

 There was a nice program on the bank of the Mississippi.  The whole week was full of firesides and lectures regarding the various aspects of the exodus.  The events were held both in our visitors center and in the Community of Christ Visitors Center. People came from all over the country for this event.

We walked from the Cultural Hall down Main
street to Parley Street then West on Parley
street to the Mississippi River.  A little over A
Mile.  All of the wagons and Buggy's  were in
operation for the Exodus.  President and
Sister Hall in the back of the buggy with E/S
Hall driving.

View to the Temple from Parley Street....Trail of Hope

We had a special activity for Valentines Day because we were able to have a dance in the Cultural
Hall.  Being able to dance on the same floor as Joseph and Emma Smith as well as all of the early saints is a special memory.

This picture was taken at the Family Living Center

 Then the big one.  We have been reassigned to the Carthage Visitors Center.  I am no longer assigned to the Blacksmith shop as the asssistant site leader and Sister Horlacher was released as the assistant site leader from the Log School.  Now we get to work together at the Carthage Visitors Center, in Carthage, Illinois.  We were required to move to Carthage.  That meant deep cleaning our apartment for the E/S Blair who we replaced in Carthage.  We worked hard packing and cleaning. The Weather wasn't ideal because it snowed and was cold about 4 degrees.  We do a lot of comparing and think of the early saints and regardless of our challenges we are thankful for the blessings which we have and minor difficulties.  That evening we, along with other couples who have been assigned Carthage had a meeting with  President Hall regarding the upcoming peak season at Carthage.  Last year there were 61,000 guests touring the Jail.  I took a lot of notes as we are the assistant site leaders and will be the site leaders in a month.  We worked some of those busy days last summer so we have some idea what it will be like.  Its quite a challenge when you see 3 and 4 buses pull up first thing in the morning.  The challenge is to accomadate the guests and maintain the very special spirit which is in the jail.

 Our move from our home in Nauvoo to Carthage became a challenge due to the cold and
snowy weather.  The 3 inches of snow along with the 4 degree temperture and the dense fog were all challenges.

We took a break from moving to take a sleigh ride.  Elder Johnson in back.

Our New Home...The Bushnell Home in Carthage

Monday, February 1, 2016

Being a Missionary is so Special, and we couldn't be happier. . . . .

    We have had trouble with our computer so it has been awhile since we have written, about 3 weeks or so.   And since I have started this it may not be fixed as yet.   I have started over 4 times because everything just disappears.

   The weather changes almost daily, today it is jacket weather and next week they say it will be in the single numbers.    The ice is starting to melt.   You can now see  water in some of the river.  The geese have returned to feed.   We are starting to see a lot of eagles.   They are so beautiful.

     On January 20 we had a World Wide Missionary Training.   It was wonderful. . . It was especially wonderful because we knew our two grandsons, Elder Trevor Horlacher, in Mexico and Elder Richard Miklich, in the Philippines, were at the same training and learning the same things.  We were told that 75,000 missionaries were receiving this training and most of them at the same time.  Due to time zones throughout the world some missionaries received the training later.  It is amazing to see this communication technology in action but then to realize that that is nothing when compared how the Lord communicates.  No time zones, no wires, or satellite dish or amplifers.  We are truly blessed to live and be missionaries at this time.  Teach repentance and baptize, was the theme.  Testify of the Savior, "always keep Jesus' name on your lips, and defend the Savior at all times.   Repentance is a change of attitude, we come clean, we have faith in Jesus Christ.   We also learned about the Holy Ghost, his role is to bring the message from our Father and we are the vessel.   We also learned that teaching is listening and observing.   We were encouraged to let the spirit guide, even in the questions we ask.  Of course, we have to study and prepare for the Holy Ghost to bring those things we have studied to mind and will direct us in what we say and do.   We need to teach people not lessons.   These concepts are not only for Missionaries but for each of us as we teach, be it in Sunday School, etc.   We must always rely on the Spirit or Holy Ghost, but always study and prepare so the knowledge is always with us.  We must also make sure we have the spirit with us at all times.  This is something we must always be aware of, as Satan is always there waiting for the moment to come in.   Just a quick reminder that Revelation comes through thoughts to the mind and feelings to the heart.  Always act upon them when they come, never doubt.   We learned so much, much of what we perhaps already knew but we always need reminders.

     I would like to share a cute story with you,   Elder Clark spoke in church today and opened with this story.   Heavenly Father was getting concerned, because he could see that things were getting pretty bad down on earth so he called one of his angels and ask him to go down and see just how bad it really was.   So he went down and spent a few days looking around.   He returned back to Heavenly Father and reported.   It looked like 95% of the people were not doing the things that they should be doing and only 5% were doing the things he wanted them to do.   Heavenly Father felt so bad that he decided to send another angel down.   He arrived on earth and spent several days looking around.   He also returned back to Heaven and gave his report.  Again, 95% of the people were doing things that weren't good and 5% were doing the things they should.   Heavenly Father still was concerned so he decided to send an email down to give encouragement.   Then he ask if any of us knew what the email said, he looked all around and of course no one did.   ha    It makes one wonder if Heavenly Father did send an email would I be one who would receive it.

    This Saturday is the Exodus Re-enactment of the Saints who left Nauvoo on that bitter cold day.   I will be walking for Susanna Barton, who is my Great-Great Grandmother and Margaret McCullough, who is also a Great-Great Grandmother.   Elder Horlacher will be walking for Harmon Cutler, my Great-Great Grandfather and my  Great Grandfather Royal James Cutler, and John Steele Carpenter, a Great-Great Grandfather.  He will also march in the Nauvoo Legend.    We will have the horses and wagons, oxen and wagons, and most of us will be walking.   We will leave from the Family Living Center and go to the Mississippi River.   What an honor to have family to walk for.
     Then on the 13th we will have a Valentine Party in the Cultural Hall on the 3rd floor, where the Prophet Joseph and Emma Smith danced.   The Cultural Hall still has the original floor.

     We love you all and are so thankful you are all a part of our lives,   Please take good care of yourselves and remember to care for each other as we are our Heavenly Fathers hands on this earth.