Monday, February 8, 2016

  When we were in Eagle Mountain to see our granddaughter Jessie in a play, Ruth had Keith check her eyes because she had been having some issues. He discovered that her cataracts have really grown and he could see why she was having problems. Ruth wasn't wanting to address the issue until after we completed our mission, however, she was getting more and more frustrated with the eye problems so this week she made an appointment with Dr. Hammond who did my cataract surgery for an assesment. They discovered she has two cataracts and so she made the decision to have them surgically removed. She's a little nervous but I have assured her, and the doctor did as well that it will all be worth it in the end.
  This past week has not been extremely busy but our elders are just working hard. We had one baptism on Friday night, one more on Saturday this week and possibly five more by the end of this month! That is great for us. We began teaching new member discussions to a nine year old that was baptized about two weeks ago. He is a neat young man and so sharp! It is a neat experience to teach such a young man with desire to learn the Gospel.
  We have had some wonderful visits with families this week during our dinner appointments. It has been such a struggle to find people home to teach this week, even though the weather has been snowy and cold.
  Saturday we had registered for Discovery Days at the Salt Palace in Salt Lake City. This is an annual conference sponsored by Roots Tech who develops the system that runs Family Search. It is a great conference. We left early in the morning and stopped in to register. Then we traveled on to Sandy where we attended the funeral of my cousin Julie Castleton Hemple. She was the youngest daughter of my Uncle Vernon and Aunt Norma. She had suffered from cancer twice and passed away earlier in the week. It was an impressive funeral. Most of the funeral was provided by family members who gave their memories of their mother. Some wonderful thoughts about the eternal nature of families and the importance of the Savior's Atonement. At the end of the day, her husband Wayne dedicated the grave site.
  We then returned to the Discovery Days. The focus was on doing family history and temple service. Both of them are important to those who passed on before the Gospel was restored or did not have the opportunity to receive the Gospel during their lives here on the earth. Some great presentations were made to show how important these things were for the exaltation of God's children. Of course, we know that not everyone will accept this work that is done for them but one of the guiding principles of the Gospel is agency.
  This discussion was the focus of our meeting on Sunday morning with the Stake Presidency. We have enjoyed helping families learn about family history and it looks like we will be spending even more time as we complete our mission to see that this work is introduced to as many as possible.
  We attended two of the wards yesterday involved in the boundary changes. There were quite a few callings announced and much more work to do for those bishoprics. The newly formed ward had a long list of callings to sustain and because of the difficulty for them to be fully organized, they only held a two hour block of meetings. They will hold the full three hour block next Sunday. The Gospel is true and the work continues to accelerate as we approach the second coming of our Savior.

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