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Tuesday, February 21, 2017


As we sang the words of the hymn Called to serve Him, Heavenly King of Glory... at the beginning of our fireside this evening my voice gave out as the tears came realizing we were finally here, at the MTC, beginning our mission. This has been our dream/plan for so many years and despite many road blocks it actually happened. We are missionaries! It has been quite the journey.
We got our missionary badges!!!

Last week was full of great last minute activities. We spent a lovely Thursday with one of our sons and his family in the park. 

Then Friday morning we played with our daughter and her family who had driven over from Colorado to see us. Also great fun! 

Then Friday evening our Utah family was getting together for pizza. It is always great for me when the family gets together. And it is always lovely to catch with them all including those from Colorado this time.

What we did not realize was that our children had planned to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary as well as our leaving for our mission in Australia. We came out of our room to discover the living room decorated for our anniversary and for our Australian Mission with the Australian flag.
Timtams and Pavlovas
We were treated to Pavlova and Timtams which are Australian desserts. What fun! And what a delight to have 5 of our 10 children, lots of grandchildren and some great grandchildren all in one place with us. So Awesome!! 

And of course I was in tears when I realized all they had done to surprise us. One of our daughters had collaborated with everyone and complied a beautiful book with pictures of EVERYONE in the family which will be so great to bring with us on our mission so we can look at the sweet faces of each of our family whenever we want. And there was also a wonderful  gold leaf rendering of the Salt Lake Temple with our wedding date. We felt so spoiled.

We just can't say enough about how loved we have felt this past few weeks.
34 of our 73 member family!!! if I counted right :)

Saturday was also a special day as several of our family attended the Provo Temple with us. It was such a joy to look around the room and see so many of those I love so much in the temple with me. What a lovely day! And Sunday was also great! We sure love being with our family! And now we are on to our next adventure. It is wonderful to know that our family is so supportive. The past several months we have witnessed such an outpouring of love from our family and friends for which we are very grateful.                      
Monday morning our son and daughter-in-law brought us to the Mission Training Center where we were given our missionary badges, our room cards, our departure tickets and our VISAS!!!. They actually were issued.

Can it really only be 2 days ago that we got here???? 

We were immediately taken into meetings and given a lot of information. We were divided into districts for study class purposes. We all took pictures in front of the iconic world map.
pointing to Sydney, Australia
OUR DISTRICT: the couple next to us will also be in our Sydney North mission as office support taking care of all the missionaries; the next couple will go to Nauvoo to help visitors learn about the history of the Church in that part of the country, and the couple on the right will be heading to Italy headquartered in Rome to work with refugees in that country. They are a great bunch and we enjoy our study classes together.
We heard a wonderful talk by Elder Bednar about the Character of Jesus Christ. We talked about faith and how faith causes us to act. And I had such a rush of conflicting emotion. I loved everything but at the same time I almost felt like running out the door because I felt incapable of being a missionary. I realize that I need to develop a closer relationship with Jesus Christ to be able to be effective. By the time we got to our room and did a little unpacking I was exhausted and ready for bed.

Today, Tuesday was fantastic! Although I began the day still feeling totally inadequate I gradually felt like with the Lord's help I would be able to do what I was being asked to do. So onward and upward! There is lots of room in my life for growth.

There is such special Spirit here at the MTC. It just feels fantastic - kind of like we are bathed in warmth. Everyone is so nice. There were about 75 senior missionaries including us that came in on Monday morning. What a delight it is to also see literally hundreds of young men and women who are already here to train for their worldwide mission assignments. The cafeteria is amazing as it functions so well to provide meals for so many.

And of course my tears often flow because I feel it all so deeply. I love the Gospel of Jesus Christ and feel so grateful that we have been called to serve the Lord.

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