Thursday, May 24, 2012

Karen and I left the MTC this morning and drove up to SLC to the church office building to attend meetings with the Military Relations Committee. We had several discussions consisting of the dos and don'ts while working on military installations. We want to ensure we maintain good relationships with all personnel on these installations. We learned quite a bit of the history and background of the military relations missions. Many of our questions and concerns were answered.

Tomorrow morning we will begin our journey to South Carolina with stops in Laramie, Omaha, somewhere in Tennessee and then on to Columbia. It may be a couple of days before I write again. Until then, take care.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Today is Wednesday, our final day in the MTC. Yesterday, we finished CES curriculum training. We covered two semesters of study in two days. Either we are very quick, or the training was very abbreviated. :) The training was excellent, we received a great foundation for teaching in the CES program, now it is up to us to study and review regularly so that we do not lose what we have learned. Last evening, Elder Rasband of the Seventy, spoke to us on the topic of staying pure and worthy for the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost, without, which we would not succeed in our missionary labors. It was an excellent message, one worth of continual review.

Today, the administrative offices of CES instructed us concerning building foundations of understanding. They were with us all morning. This afternoon a couple from the Military Relations office addressed us teaching us of a fairly new program for military families called, "Resiliency". They also addressed our questions concerning our duties and responsibilities.

Tomorrow we will meet at the church office building with other members of the Military Relations Department.

Our stay here at the MTC has been an incredibly spiritual experience. Our minds and hearts have been quickened by the Spirit of God to enable us to learn quickly and understand the concepts, principles and other teachings that have been presented to us. We have been instructed by incredibly talented individuals and have been enriched by our interactions with many other couples we have associated with.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Yesterday's blog was written sometime early in the afternoon. I want to write about the evening meetings we attended. We first attended our exit devotional; the MTC president spoke along with one of his counselors. It was excellent. I cannot devulge all that was spoken, so you will have to trust me. Then we walked over to the Sunday evening Fireside, which began at 7pm. President and Sister Dains, the Provo Temple president and matron spoke. Again this was another excellent meeting. They both spoke on material covering the temple. Karen and I were completely edified and instructed on new things that I had never considered concerning the Temple. Every once in a while the Lord opens to view new ideas, new things to consider and ponder about the temple. There is so much to learn about; only those who make temple attendance an often and consistant part of their lives will ever begin to know and understand all that can be learned there. I know that I have bearly scratched the surface.

Today, Karen and I began our Church Education System (CES) training. This was wonderful. It will be as good as last week's training. We began today an intense study of the process and procedures for proper instruction, lesson planning and delivery to youth and young adults. I look forward to tomorrow's instruction.

I gave a copy of my two books to one of the instructors; he absolutely loved them. I will give him copies of all my works, both published and unpublished for use as he sees fit in the CES program. I think I finally found a place for them! I'm sure he will be able to put them to good use in the CES world.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Karen and I had a real nice weekend; it is not over yet, but I thought I'd get on the computer while I had a chance. Saturday I spilt Chocolate milk all down my new suit and ended up taking it to the dry cleaner later that morning. The young lady who waited on me said, "We clean missionaries suit for free, but sometimes we don't, but then sometimes we do". Hmmmm, I'm confused. I told her I'd bring money to pay for the cleaning just in case.

We had a nice morning visiting mom and dad while we did our laundry. Then we went to my nephew's Eagle Court of Honor. Afterwards we went to the Provo Temple and had a nice hour of service there. Today, Sunday, we are celebrating our 35th Wedding Anniversary. Attended our church services and this evening we will attend a departure meeting and then a Fireside. It has been a great week and look forward to next week.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Today, Karen and I finished our first week of training here at the MTC. This morning we worked real hard on learning how to assess the needs of members of the Church who are not as active as they should be. We worked with other senior couples in role playing situations to give us an opportunity to learn how to resolve their concerns and help them grow spiritually.

Our experience this week has been a great learning experience with spiritual experiences, one after the other. We have been taught by very dedicated and accomplished young men and women who have devoted themselves to our learning and growth.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

This morning, first thing, Karen and I had our second live session with a lady who was acting the part of a woman who had recently moved into the area and wanted to know more about the "Mormon Church". We remembered our self critiques from our session yesterday, applied them to our session today and felt much better about our abilities to teach to the needs of the investigator. We continued in classes the remainder of the morning and all afternoon. We had a real special devotional later in the afternoon with a couple who had served four mission. They told us of their experiences, which correlated well with the things we have been taught over the past 4 days. It was a very spiritual meeting and reinforced the principles that we have learned.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Karen and I have been in classes all day long today and yesterday. Today we had our first experience teaching together. The MTC brings in volunteers to act as investigators for us to teach. We did well for our first crack at it, but we need to continue to practice so that we can better ourselves in this important responsibility. Last night, Tuesday, Elder L. Tom Perry came and spoke at the weekly Tuesday devotional. It happened to be the 183rd anniversary of the restoration of the Aaronic Priesthood. So, of course, he spoke quite a bit about the priesthood. He also told a touching story about a young boy and his experience with Martin Harris, a witness of the Book of Mormon plates and the Angel Moroni. We are having great experiences and look forward to serving in the future.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Karen and I arrived safely at the MTC on Monday morning. We did our in-processing, ate lunch and then began our orientation. We had a good afternoon meeting with the presidency of the MTC. Afterwards we were divided into districts, each district has about 4 couples. Karen and I are staying in the Marriott in Provo. It is a nice room. Thank you to all who have been so kind to us in wishing us well. We will work hard and are very committed in doing whatever the Lord will have us do. Please keep us in your prayers.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Sunday 13 May, 2012: It is Mother's Day. We were asked to speak in church today and speak on the topic of Mother and try to combine it with a missionary theme. Karen spoke about her mother and father and how their teachings and example to her helped prepare her for this time of life. I spoke on the them of unity between husband and wife and how unity in marriage helps prepare children for the future.

After Sacrament meeting we were set-a-part by president Thompson, our Stake President. Tomorrow morning we will pack up everything we need for the MTC and be on our way. We will report in around 10:00am.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Our Mission

As you all know we have been called to the South Carolina, Columbia Mission as Military Specialist on Fort Gordon. We will be entering the MTC on May 14th at 10:00am. We are looking forward to the rest from our labors around the house. :)

We returned from our trip back east on Friday April 27th and the following morning we dashed off to the post office to collect our mail. Upon returning home we found our mission call on the very bottom of the pile! David and Rosalee, Eric and Shannon were in the living room with us; Becky, Jacob and our parents were on the phone. As we opened the envelope and pulled out our call, Karen was the first to call out our call; I then called out our report date, which was only 16 days away. Since then we have been busy from sun up to sun down trying to get everything ready.