Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father's Day

Elder Beckstrand and I want to wish all of the Fathers of our wonderful sister missionaries a very HAPPY FATHER'S DAY!!!
   What an amazing job you've done in raising such outstanding young women.  We love them all so much!  When I asked some of them what quality they most admired in their fathers these are some of their replies:
     1.  I admire my father's patience.  I have only seen my dad get angry once in my whole life.
     2.  My father doesn't criticize or scold me.   He always builds me up.
     3.  My dad came to all of my tennis tournaments, even when he had to leave work to be there.  He always supported me no matter how difficult it was for him.
     4.  My father has always been a good example to me.  He has never turned down a church calling, even when it meant many hours away from home and many sacrifices of his time and energy.  That has always been my example as I work to be the best missionary I can be.
     5.  No matter how busy he was, I never knew it because he always took time for me.  It's my favorite thing to spend time with him.  He's my best friend.
     6.  He taught me to love God.
     7.  He's the hardest worker I know.  He often left us while I was asleep to go away to work.  He would be gone sometimes two or three weeks, but he never complained because it was his way of showing how much he loved us. 
     8.  My dad is very wise and smart.  He is knowledgeable about so many things.  I love to talk with him and get his viewpoint about the important events taking place in our world.
     9.  He's GREAT with a barbeque grill! 
   10.  He always makes me feel important.

It's easy to see why these young women love their dads.  Thanks for being the wonderful examples and caring fathers that it's obvious you are.  We hope you are enjoying having a righteous daughter who is serving the Lord as a full-time missionary at the Mesa Temple Visitors' Center.

The newest thing to come to our Visitors' Center is an art exhibit entitled "Witnesses of Christ".  There are 19 beautiful paintings by Liz Lemon Swindle, all focused on events in the Savior's life.

It was something of a challenge for us to set up our first exhibit, but we asked lots of questions and learned by experimentation.

I'm sure there's an easier way to get this painting straight! 

 The large painting in the center is entitled 'The Good Shepherd'.  It tells of the shepherd's desire to leave the ninety and nine and look for the lost sheep, reminding us that every soul is precious.  Each of the other paintings in the exhibit are equally thought provoking.
These painting dealt with the nativity. 

This side of the room showed scenes following the crucifixion and resurrection.
All of the chairs were eventually removed and only a few benches with some lovely greenery were left in the center of the room.  The sisters assigned to the exhibit help the paintings come to life by encouraging guests to explore their feelings and find the deeper meaning behind each scene.  With quiet piano music playing in the background, it is a very sweet place to be.

Outside, the palm trees are putting on a show of their own.  They have sprouted these pretty white fronds that look like lacey feather dusters.

Never having lived in a desert climate before, I'm enjoying all of the beautiful vegetation that grows here.  The temple gardeners take such good care of the grounds.

We lost four sisters the end of May and only received one in their place.  She's not even ours to keep - she's only on loan.  Born and raised in Hawaii, our new Sister Mills has come to the Mesa Mission while she waits for her visa to arrive for New Zealand.  It only took a couple of days for us to realize that she would fit right in here.  We hope her visa doesn't arrive for weeks!

No such luck.  We got word on June 11th that her visa had come through and she would be flying out to New Zealand on Wednesday, June 12th.  Rats!!

              Goodbye, Sister Mills.  Our loss will be New Zealand's gain.  Good luck and God Bless!

The next sister missionary 'loaned' to us at the Visitors' Center is Sister Taylor from Bountiful, Utah!!  Yes - she's from our home town!  How great is that???? 
 We share many mutual acquaintances - I just hope they don't tell her the truth about us....
Sister Taylor is waiting for a visa to Taiwan.  We're hoping it will be a long wait, but I'm sure she wants to get to her field of labor as soon as possibile. 

These new sisters add a delightful 'freshness' to our Center because they are so full of enthusiasm, excitement, and missionary zeal -coming directly from the MTC as they have.  Our sister Carlson will also be a blessing to them as their senior companion, because she has the maturity and experience in the field to give them many practical ideas on how to be most effective in their missionary work.
  A Win-Win situation all around!