Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Life is an echo, what you send out comes back; what you sow - you reap; what you give - you get; what you see in others - exists in you.  Remember, life is an echo; it always gets back to you, so give goodness.  "Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.  And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing." (1 Corinthians 13:1-2)

The common cry at this time of year is that we act differently during this holiday season than we do most of the rest of the year.  How many times have you heard that said?  As we near the day we celebrate as the anniversary of the birth of the Christ Child, let us resolve to have charity towards all, and malice towards none during the entire year, that we may emulate His life and purpose.

Samantha, Kristen, Erin, Shannon
a part of the Bridgewater institute class
Our fall semester in institute is coming to a close.  We taught our final fall class at Dalhousie University today, and we have two more classes in Bridgewater before Christmas break.  We really enjoy teaching and meeting with the youth, and our assignment with the YSA Branch is very fulfilling.  Our time in the YSA ward in Salt Lake City was a good primer, and we hope we get it right this time.  Engagements are happening and girls are becoming left-handed to show off their rings.  As one YSA Bishop said: "The hardware has been installed!"

Bro. Rick Cartier,
an awesome individual
We met with Bro. Cartier, our CES supervisor, last week and have been given a somewhat different road to follow.  He travels a lot (the entire mission) to keep tabs on all seminary and institute classes that are being taught, trying to give direction, train, and what not, besides teaching two or three classes here in the Halifax area and trying to maintain a family and serve in a bishopric.  He has asked that we teach two classes at Dalhousie each Tuesday, and cover all CES classes in Nova Scotia, less the Halifax area.  This means we'll be fine-tuning our own teaching methods, then training instructors throughout the entire province, as well as tracking attendance, motivating non-attenders to attend, and whatever else he's been doing, besides working with the YSA and their branch, and attending the temple on Thursdays.  We also will be doing a little service in the mission office.  It sounds like a lot, and maybe it is, but it keeps us busy and our time and efforts become more fulfilling.  We would rather be busy and doing, than trying to find things to do and feeling unfulfilled.  Occasionally we will have an opportunity to travel outside of Nova Scotia for mission or CES work, which will give us a chance to see some of the countryside.

This past Friday, November 23, we had an opportunity to go to the temple with a large number of YSA to do some ordinance work.  We've never had as many youth attend the temple in one night, and it was a very rewarding time.  We're going to see if we can change our YSA temple visits to Saturday so more youth can come from outlying areas, and we'll have more time for them to be involved and to feel the spirit that dwells there.

Elder Fisher, Jimmy Adamson,
& Elder Hardy
Sister Rust, Raju, & Sister Kowalski
The next day was baptism day.  We had the great opportunity to witness three baptisms.  The first was Jimmy Adamson, a new member of the Halifax 1st Ward (family ward).  He was baptized by Elder Hardy who is going home this coming Friday.  He is one of our favorites whom we love dearly and we'll miss him a lot.  That was in the early afternoon.  That evening we witnessed the baptism of two YSA - Raju, baptized by Bro. Green, the father of Raju's friend, Ricki.  The other was Stephanie Kenney, baptized by Elder Hunt.  We were thrilled and believe those who were attending were fed well by the Spirit.  We met with Stephanie and her mother (a devout Catholic) the Tuesday before, and her mother was very apprehensive of her daughter joining the Mormons!  The Spirit calmed her fears and she attended both the baptism and Sacrament Meeting the next day to witness the confirmation.  We met again with them on Monday night in their home, and Mom was completely warm and friendly, and the spirit was again very strong.
Elder Deem, Stephanie Kenney,
Elder Hunt, & Catherine (Steph's mom)
We are loving our time  in the mission field and are witnessing some wonderful things going on in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  Our Savior is definitely in charge and directing His missionary work.  He is hastening His harvest, as is witnessed by the adjustment of missionary ages and changes He has made for senior missionaries to serve.  We are challenged to search out those He has prepared, to teach them and let them feel the spirit and receive the blessings we often take for granted - to become as He is.  Elder Richard G. Scott, an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ, has said: "We become what we want to be by consistently being what we want to become each day.  Righteous character is a precious manifestation of what you are becoming...Righteous character is more valuable than any material object you own, any knowledge you have gained through study, or any goals you have attained."

We chose to chew at the Choo's

Bro. & Sis. Hartling

The Canadian Thanksgiving Day is the second Monday of October and we were invited to a couple of homes for wonderful dinners - JJ and Sheldon Choo on Sunday and Bro. and Sis. Hartling on Monday.  We had more invitations but two were plenty filling.  For the American Thanksgiving we were invited to a dinner at the "empty nesters" in Dartmouth on the Monday previous to Thanksgiving Day.  They invited all the American senior missionaries, and we had a lot of good food and great company. 

A couple of shots of the Mahone Bay harbor in November - beautiful no matter what month!
"The Barber" - Sister Tiff, giving Elder Hardy his last haircut in the mission field.  We want him to look good when he arrives home this coming Friday!


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