We had 24 new missionaries come in on the eleventh of June, and we had two sister missionaries stay with us that night. The breakfast went well (served 40 people), and then the missionaries had training. We helped set up for the lunch, but there was one hang up -- the 30 pizzas that were ordered were late in coming. Everyone was wondering what was going on and why the delay. I would not say that the missionaries were cross, but it was getting a little late for their lunch. One of the elders sat down to the piano and started playing "Called to Serve". The missionaries came back into the room and got into a huge half circle and started singing with gusto. It was incredible. He played "We Thank Thee Oh God for a Prophet" and a couple of other favorites and the spirit in the room was so strong. President Wirthlin went around shaking hands and came back to the front of the room in tears. I have the responsibility of taking the pictures of the new missionaries, their companions, and then with President and Sister Wirthlin. That went smoothly and by the time we were finished the pizzas had arrived.
Having all of the missionaries hanging around the office that day was also an incredible experience. We really can feel the priesthood power when they are there, and we are so blessed to be able to participate in these transfer days.
That night there was a dinner at the Wirthlin's honoring the missionaries going home the next morning. That experience is always special as well. These missionaries were a huge addition to the mission and will be missed. I must say, though, the new ones coming in are pretty awesome. One of the Visa Waiters can speak Portugese fluently as well as German. The way the missionaries are paired together is always a huge miracle.
We went on a road trip on Saturday. It is so beautiful here this time of the year. We have had some HUGE lightning and thunder storms, and the rain comes down so hard -- sometimes it hails as well. This Saturday was beautiful and clear. We went up into the beginnings of the Adirondacks.
This is a covered railway bridge next to the lake. Some of these places are so old -- we plan to take a train up to the Adirondacks -- if not soon then in the fall. Beautiful!!!
We went to a city called Boonville. Our office partners are doing some genealogy for a member whose family is from Boonville. We decided to go to the cemetery to see if we could see any of his family names.
As we were heading back we saw this Nirvana Spring Water sign. This bottled water is supposed to be the BEST spring water. I just plain and simply thought it was so funny to see this sign and then the spring with Canadian Geese all around in and about the water. My love for Canadian Geese is not very great because of all the poop they drop all over the place.
Last Thursday, June20, Dad and I needed to go to Hamilton, NY to see an apartment where sisters were living. They were trying to have a sense of humor and not complain about their situation, but when we saw the conditions there I told Dad that we had to get them out. I took pictures, but I won't bore you with those. The place has been rented for 10 years or more, and there was so much stuff collected in the apartment that you could hardly move. Plus it was dirty. I really felt sick to my stomach when we left. The landlord owns 200+ apartments in Hamilton and the surrounding area. He was willing to let the church roll over the lease and security deposit. We found another apartment, and yesterday (Wednesday, June 26th) they moved in . They are so excited, and I am very pleased for them. Many of the apartments have been rented for several years, so we will be going out and inspecting the places to see if they are okay. The Assistants are going to be moving as soon as they can find an apartment -- their place is nice enough but needs painting, etc and cleaning out the accumulated junk. One nice thing is that you can put stuff out on the sidewalks where it is collected. That will be a huge help!!!
We spent a good portion of Saturday taking care of the 5 youngest of 7 children of members of the branch. They were desperate for help, so it was our fun to help out. They live in a 200 year old brick house in the country -- bricks falling off of the siding, and lots and lots of work to renovate the place. They are a cute family and we had a nice time. We had a late lunch/early dinner at a restaurant called The Chowder House. I had the best scallops ever -- even beat out Ivars!!! I am hoping that we can go again because the meal was so good.
The meeting on Sunday night for missionaries and local church leaders was a wonderful meeting. Elder Holland conducted the meeting, and he said, "To all the full-time missionaries sharing in this broadcast around the world, we say never again in your entire life are you going to be part of a zone conference this large!" We looked for Kara in the choir, but we did not see her. What an incredible experience for her to be there. The missionary work is going to move forward at a greater and greater pace -- just hope we can keep up. The Lord will not let this work fail, and we are so thankful to be here at this time to be part of the tsunami. The members of the church will have an increase in responsibility for missionary work. Lots of changes......
Will close for now. We are doing fine -- still so very tired after spending the day in the office, but we are happy and healthy. We love you each one, and you are in our thoughts and prayers. Have a good weekend!!! Be safe and know of our love.
Mom and Dad, Grammy and Papa, Elder and Sister Cutler