Our calling as full-time missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has come to an end, though as members of His church we have accepted the challenge to share His gospel always. The past 18 months have been indescribably wonderful. To serve Him was a marvelous blessing, and to serve where we did was one of His tender mercies. Our opportunity to serve a mission in a part of Elder Tiffany's old mission, our old homestead of Mahone Bay and area, and on Sister Tiffany's home ground was much more than dreamed of. We will be forever indebted to our families, friends (new and old), all of the young single adults of the Dartmouth Nova Scotia Stake, fellow missionaries, leaders, and our Father in Heaven, for such a blessing.
Our blood will always be mixed with salt water from the coasts of Atlantic Canada. We pray that we have been a positive influence for good and for spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ to His children in that part of His vineyard. As one famous military leader said to some on foreign soil: "(We) shall return!"
Because this is our last blog (at least for this mission) we want to share a lot of pictures of our last couple of weeks in Nova Scotia and then our trip home (all 3,300 miles).
This is the Wright family (minus one daughter). Bro. Wright is the nephew of Sharon Wright Beddes - a very dear friend of ours in Utah. They invited us for a very delicious dinner at their home.
On the last Sunday we attended the YSA Branch at church, they had some tasty treats and a very nice gift for us. There are too many here to name, but we love them and will really miss their spirit and love (and activities).
That same evening after church, we were invited to visit Bro. and Sis. Evans and their daughter Katherine at their home. Katherine left for the MTC the day after we left for home. She was a very active part of the YSA Branch and we'll miss her spirit and enthusiasm.
Our youngest son, Josh, arrived the Sunday before we left to help with the drive home. We had to take him to Peggy's Cove, of course. It was a very nice sunny day with a wind coming in off the water. IT WAS FREEZING!! There are no others in the picture because we were the only ones crazy enough to brave the sub-freezing temperature.
During our last week Pres. and Sis. Leavitt invited all the local senior missionaries to a dinner at the mission home. Josh said that's the first time he had been around that many senior citizens that didn't smell like Icy Hot.
We took a few days to visit the South Shore of Nova Scotia, on the way to Liverpool and family. The backdrop for Josh is Chester Basin, a very scenic spot once visited by Pres. and Mrs. Clinton.
We had a hard time saying farewell to Roger and Anna Davison. We can't express enough our love for these two and their family. They are as close as family.
Our most oft visited "bed and breakfast" was with our niece and her husband, Karen and Clayton Smith. They were very gracious in sharing their home and food with us every time we went to Liverpool.
Near Karen and Clayton's home is Beach Meadows. Here you see mostly rocks, with crashing waves. Beyond the rocks is a very sandy and beautiful beach. This picture doesn't even come close to the beauty and majesty of the sea and shore.
Summerville Beach is south of Liverpool and is the scene of many happy moments the Tiffany family has spent sunning and wading (the North Atlantic is too cold for swimming for us).
Their was a storm a day or two before this, so the waves were accommodating in crashing on the rocks.
Our nephew and wife, Kevin and Sherry Roy, are always a warm visit. They've just become grandparents and were all smiles.
More of the crashing waves. Elder Tiffany is as fascinated with these as he is with the enormous size ships that came into Halifax harbor on a regular basis.
Our nephew David and his family, Nat, Keegan, and Nora. It has been in their home near Liverpool where we went for family dinners and get-togethers. It was bitter-sweet to say farewell to family and friends, to go home to family and friends.
Previously we've shown pictures of colorful buildings at Fisherman's Wharf. This is the harbor - also a scenic spot.
Sheldon and JJ Choo, with Silas and Mila. They are like our children and grandchildren. We had a very emotional farewell with them, but will definitely see them again.
Our last full day in the mission we attended an RCMP retirees dinner with Milford and Ruby. Doesn't Milford look great in his red surge?!
We stopped in Farmington, Maine, to visit Willard and Carol Hatch (Willard was one of Elder Tiff's missionary companions in earlier days). We're sorry we didn't get good pictures of them, but we love them dearly and hope to see them again soon.
The four churches on Main Street in Palmyra, New York. Not a great picture, but we'll have to deal with it.
E. B. Grandin building in Palmyra - site of publication of the first edition of the Book of Mormon in Palmyra.
Entrance to the Sacred Grove in Palmyra, where Joseph Smith saw and talked to God and Jesus Christ. A beautiful area, even more beautiful in the spring when he had the vision of the Father and the Son.
If you look really closely you will see two small cars on the fence railing. Josh's son, Tayson, sent these with his dad to keep him safe. This is looking toward the Sacred Grove.
A statue of the Angel Moroni on the Hill Cumorah near Palmyra. It was on this hill where Joseph Smith received the Book of Mormon.
A magnificent view of a stunning American/Canadian icon. Oh yes, and the Niagra Falls are in the background.
Another beautiful view of the Niagra Falls.
In Kirtland, Ohio (near Cleveland), The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons) built the first temple in these latter days to our God.
A plaque giving some details of the Kirtland Temple, currently being cared for by the Community of Christ Church.
Inside the Visitor's Center at Kirtland, ten very lovely lady missionaries serenaded us with some Christmas carols.
A beautiful painting of the Kirtland, Ohio, area as it would have looked when the early Mormon Saints first arrived.
On our trip towards Utah, we dropped down to Elizabethtown, Kentucky, where we visited with close friends made when we lived there. This is the Robinson family, a really great group whom we love very much.
We had a reunion of our original "empty nester's" home evening group. Dan and Kaye Caldera on our right, and Becky and Gary Giewald on our left. We shared many laughs, meals, and spiritual moments with them during our one year in E'town, which we'll always be thankful for and will never forget. The Giewald's allowed us to invade their home for a night and treated us like family but fed us like royalty.
Big, Wonderful Wyoming, where the snow never falls (it comes in sideways). Our last evening on the road before driving into Utah and Salt Lake valley. The temperatures were around -7 F. The warmth of our vehicle helped us feel thankful we were not with the handcart companies of Mormon pioneers who passed this way in similar weather in the 1850s.
We're not sure we'll ever be able to express in words the wonderful experience we have had in serving the Lord as missionaries in the Canada Halifax Mission. We know we were called by a Prophet of God to serve there as representatives of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is with gratitude in our hearts beyond measure, that we wish to tell everyone who has been any part of our mission, at home or elsewhere, how much we love them and appreciate them and their support.
It is with more than faith, but with sure knowledge that we express our testimony that God lives and that He loves us. Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer, and only through Him may we return to live with our Heavenly Father by obedience to the laws and commandments given to us. The Book of Mormon is true and is another witness of Jesus Christ, given to us through a prophet of God. The priesthood of God has been restored to the earth with His Church, with all the laws, rights, and ordinances of His church as He organized it, originally, and with modern-day apostles and prophets to guide and direct us. Joseph Smith did indeed see and talk with God and Jesus Christ. Families can be together forever, through Heavenly Father's plan of everlasting happiness. This is the message we wish to share with everyone. We left our family for 18 months so we could help bring other families together forever.