We can't believe our mission is over. It is hard to write this post and to try to summarize the last month of our busy summer and the end of our mission. It has been life changing, a spiritual high for 18 months, growth in our knowledge of the Saints who lived and walked the streets of Nauvoo and so wonderful to have the kids and grand kids come and experience the Spirit of Nauvoo. The summer was busy and hard but so fun and worth every minute. Many days we would be be up at 6:30 am, non stop all day at the sites, the Sunset Stage at 5:30 and then off to the Pageant with the family and home at 10:30 pm. We found the energy to make it happen and will forever treasure our Nauvoo memories and especially the final summer. We can't figure out what happened to time in the last six months. It went by so fast and was like a blink.
Our final family visit found Lisa and John and Mark and Lisa visiting us the last week of July. The previous week when Brian and Kate were in town the temperatures were over one hundred degrees on a heat index basis. The last week of July was 85-90 on a heat index basis and quite comfortable. The locals were commenting that it never gets to that temperature in July. We had a wonderful visit and the rumor has it that Grandpa and Grandma totally wore everyone out as we tried to take advantage of every minute for visiting the sites and shows and put them on the Nauvoo Senior Missionary July schedule.
|Post Show Family Picture|
|Carthage Jail Visit with Mark and Lisa.|
We had such wonderful visits to the Carthage Jail Site with both families. We planned our day to arrive first thing and were blessed that there were no tour buses or other visitors so early. It was unusual to have a private tour of the jail in July and feel the special Spirit at the Site as a family. The tour concludes in the very room that Joseph and Hyrum Smith were martyred and sealed their testimony with their blood. It is amazing to me how even the little children become quiet in the room and can feel there is something special about the place.
The Sunset by the Mississippi Show was a unique opportunity for Sister Rober and I to interface with every missionary in the mission twice each week for the nightly shows. Three casts of Senior Missionaries perform beautifully twice weekly in the Sunset and Rendezvous Shows It will forever be a high light memory.
|Dancing grandma's honored our Senior Missionaries in "Sunset's" "Grandma's Feather Bed"--- a real crowd pleaser!|
|Senior Missionary Emma Hale Cast|
|"What a dance, did we do!" Sunset Show with the Young Performing Missionaries and Seniors!|
The Nauvoo Pageants are so incredible. They tell the story of Nauvoo and the missionaries who traveled to the British Isles to preach the Gospel in the 1840's. They had tremendous success in their efforts which resulted in so many people coming to Nauvoo to help complete the construction of the temple and build a beautiful city on the bank of the Mississippi. I recommend to everyone to plan a trip to Nauvoo during the four weeks of the Pageants. I promise you will not be disappointed.
|Senior Missionaries Singing "Called To Serve" in the Finale of the British Pageant|
As we conclude this final post it is with loving feelings in our hearts for our Nauvoo Mission. We made many new dear friends with our fellow senior missionaries. We will also remember the great people who live in the Midwest and and opportunity to live for a short time in that part of our great country. It is was such a little bubble to live in Nauvoo and be somewhat insulated from the world for a short time. Cell phones hardly work there. We pretty much missed the whole election process. We are excited to be coming home and have the opportunity to be with the family more often. We will always be inspired by the faith and obedience of the people who lived in Nauvoo. They did hard things in their lives. We have to do different but hard things in our lives too. We will forever remember their example and the streets of old Nauvoo!
We close now with the words of John Taylor, the Third President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. He was an eye witness to the martyrdom of Joseph Smith:
"Joseph Smith, the Prophet and Seer of the Lord, has done more, save Jesus only, for the salvation of men in this world, than any other man that ever lived in it. In the short space of twenty years, he has brought forth the Book of Mormon, which he translated by the gift and power of God, and has been the means of publishing it on two continents; has sent the fullness of the everlasting gospel, which it contained, to the four quarters of the earth; has brought forth the revelations and commandments which compose this book of Doctrine and Covenants, and many other wise documents and instructions for the benefit of the children of men; gathered many thousands of the Latter-day Saints, founded a great city, and left a fame and name that cannot be slain. He lived great, and he died great in the eyes of God and his people; and like most of the Lord’s anointed in ancient times, has sealed his mission and his works with his own blood; and so has his brother Hyrum. In life they were not divided, and in death they were not separated!"
|Joseph and Hyrum Smith Statue at Carthage Jail Site|