Sunday, August 25, 2013

August 25,2013


The pictures to the left are of the Mission office.  It is a beautiful building in a beautiful setting.  The picture to the left is where Sister Skidmore (Miriam) works.  She is the first person you meet as you enter the office.  The lower picture is the building.  We occupy the lower corner floor shown.  It is a beautiful building in a beautiful settling.
This week we were able to work in the office all week and now we feel more caught up.  I finally completed the task of getting 3 more apartments for the 3 new areas.  Then President Stoker informed me that I need to find 3 more as we are opening 3 more areas next month.  One in Massachusetts and two in Maine.  The work continues onward.
The high light of the week was yesterday as Elder Hallstrom(one of the 7 Pres. of the Seventy)  came to tour the mission and we all got to spend a little time with him.  He is wonderful. We messed up by not getting a picture. He informed us on how much the missionary work is growing not only with the surge of missionaries now at 75000, but also the challenges with opening 52 new missions. Wow, it is awesome to be just a small part of this great work.  Our mission had 12 baptisms yesterday which I think is a new weekly record. 
We are grateful for the opportunity to serve.  Our testimonies continue to growing as we work with the wonderful missionaries and the ward where we live.  The membership here is so diverse and young in the gospel. 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

week of zone conferences

Week of Zone Conferences

We have had the most marvelous week with three zone conferences.  Our first was Monday August 12th at the Joseph Smith Memorial pictured below.  This is a very special as it is the birth place of our beloved Prophet.  As you can see the weather was beautiful and the grounds are immaculate.  We are always so impressed at the dedication and detail to beauty the church keeps all of its properties.
Our second zone conference was in Concord NH which is just 30 miles north of Manchester. 
Our third zone conference was in Augusta Maine.  We traveled up there on Thursday afternoon and stayed in the Senator Hotel Thursday night.  We had a wonderful dinner with the Davis's, Pettingill's and President and Sister Stoker.  After the conference, we decided to travel back down the coast with the Pettingill's.  We took our time and this is a picture we took at one of the stops.  There are a few light houses along the coast that are really unique and quite beautiful.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

August 4, 2013

This is the lane Miriam and I take our morning walks on.  The weather is absolutely beautiful right now.  When the sun shines all day, it tends to get humid and sticky but other wise it is the best. There are so many trees that you can't see 10 feet into the trees.  We are sure loving the area!
We have just completed our first transfer this past week.  We had 23 new missionaries report in and we had 9 leave.  It was a very, very busy time.  We had no idea the amount of work and organization that is required to run a mission.  We were able to attend the Boston Temple with the returning missionaries last Tuesday evening.  It was the best!  We love working with and being with these wonderful young people. The mission had 130 missionaries 5 months ago and has 217 today.  We are expecting to have 250 by the end of the year. The growth is attributed to the lowering of the age to enter the mission field. This and the number on missionaries we have come to serve while waiting for their visa makes for lots of work.

The picture shows us with the other senior couple missionaries, Elder and Sister Davis.  They are from St. George Utah and they are wonderful.  They complete their mission this month and will be going home.  We are sad to see them go. They had us over for a wonderful fish dinner last Friday evening.  He is quite the fisherman and she is a great cook. They will be replaced by Elder and Sister Pettingill. They arrive this week to start their training.  So in a few weeks, Miriam and I will be the senior missionaries in the office.  That could be trouble.

This Tuesday we are involved in new missionary training and next week we travel 3 days to different parts of the mission for zone conferences.  We are looking forward to that as we will get to see different parts of the mission.  One of the zone conferences is at the Joseph Smith Birthplace Memorial in Vermont.

Our first transfers

 This shows a lane that Miriam and I take our walks on in the mornings. The weather right now is absolutely beautiful.  There are so many trees that you can't see 10 feet off the side of the road.  When the sun shines all day, it tends to get humid and sticky however.

We finished our first transfers for the mission this past week.  We had 23 new missionaries report in and we sent 9 home.  The mission has really grown.  Five months ago the mission had 130 missionaries and today we have 217 and expect to have 250 by the end of the year.  That and the fact that we have a number of missionaries that are sent to serve temporarily while waiting for their visas, we are kept extremely busy. The surge is attributed to the lowering of the age for new missionaries.
 We were able to attend the Boston Temple with the returning missionaries last Tuesday and that was wonderful.

Miriam and I are starting to settle into our work and gaining confidence each day with what we are to do and more importantly on how to do it. We are serving with Elder and Sister Davis shown in the picture below.  They are wonderful.  They had us over to their apartment Friday evening for a wonderful fish dinner that Elder Davis caught on a fishing trip.
They are from St. George Utah.  They complete their mission the 23rd of August and will be going home.  Their replacements, Elder and Sister Pettingill will arrive this week.  We moved into our apartment last week end and are just now getting settled in it. We have a missionary training meeting this coming Tuesday and 3 zone conferences next week that we are involved in which will require us to travel to different areas of the mission.  We are looking forward to that.