Tuesday, November 9, 2010
MISSION PRESIDENTS SEMINAR-KIRTLAND,OH
What an incredibly spiritual experience we had at the Kirtland Temple. We first had a tour of the upper floors by Karl Anderson. And then we assembled in the main floor assembly Hall that was stunning. It had beautiful white benches and woodwork. At either end of the room were 3 tiers of pulpits for the Priesthood. We were seated in the pews while the General Authorities who were there: ElderJay Jensen or the Presidency of the 70 and Kevin Pearson of the lst Quorum of 70 were presiding. The 12 Area Seventies sat in the pulpit seats also. Elders Jensen and Pearson blessed the sacrament for us and then the others passed it to us. It was quite a moving experience to partake of the sacrament in a room where the Lord had appeared to the Prophet Joseph. Elders Jensen and Pearson and Bro Karl Anderson addressed us. I had the wonderful opportunity of directing the music for the meeting. It was hard because so many of the sisters were feeling the spirit and crying that I couldn't look at anyone or I would cry.
This will always be one of the highlights of our lives.
The following morning, we again met at the Stake Center for half day, had lunch and then left for our separate missions feeling uplifted and revitalized.
We spent all day Friday at the Kirtland Oh Stake Center having wonderful trainings and instruction. We had a breakout group where all the sisters met together with Sister Jensen. It was wonderful to get some insight from the other mission wifes. At one point in the meetings they introduced all the area authorities who were in attendance and I snapped pictures of each of them. It was a very fulfilling and inspirational day. And then we headed to the Kirtland Temple Visitors Center and a special Sacrament Meeting to be held in the Temple itself.
After having dinner with the Amish family we drove to the Johnson Home in Hiram, OH.
While living in this home, Joseph experiences many trials. This is where he as living when he was pulled out of bed and tarred and feathered. And where another baby died from exposure to the cold. The picture with the red, black, and green floor is the original floor from when Joseph lived there. It has been repainted to look like it did and the picture showing behind the bed shows the area they left unpainted and faded. Many visions and revelations took place at this farm. Section One, the preface, was written here and Sec 76 with the description of life after death was given.
After an afternoon of meetings, we headed to an Amish home for dinner. It was inspiring. This family fixed a wonderful dinner for about 60 of us without modern convenience. They were sincere and warm and answered questions about their life and beliefs. We took pictures by their horse and buggies. But they don't believe in having their pictures taken.
The bus had a dead battery when we boarded after dinner. But since they don't have cars, they had no jumper cables and so we had to call for help. Pretty funny.
Our next stop was the Whitney Store (school of the Prophets), the Visitor's Center, and the Ashery. The church has built a lovely visitors center with a lot of sites surrounding it. The beautifully restored "Whitney Store" is stocked and furnished as it operated in 1831. After Joseph moved from the Johnson Farm ,which we visited the next evening, he moved into the upper rooms of the Whitney Store. The church "headquarters" were here. The command to build the temple was given here. At least 18 conferences and meetings were held here. Joseph received 20 revelations here and translated the Bible here. He also conducted the "School of the Prophets". Here the First Presidency was organized. There were also many sacred visions.
We also saw the Newel K Whitney home which is yellow and stands across the street from the store. After visiting the store we took a tour of the "Ashery". A new word to me, this is the only one that exists in North America. This factory produced Potash to make soap, glass, clean wool, and some medicines. Hardwood was burned and the ashes mixed with water and subjected to intense heat. It became part of the United Order, given by the Whitneys. What a valiant family.
After mingling in the hotel lobby the first evening, we went to bed early so we could be on the bus at 7:30 in the morning. The first day was filled with wonderful visits to the Church history sites. We were blessed to have Karl Anderson as our guide. He is known as Mr Kirtland and is the foremost authority on the area and the things that happened here. It is unbelievable how much of church history took place here. I was overwhelmed by the things we heard and saw. We really were on sacred ground.
Our first stop was at the Isaac Morley Farm. On the hill behind the farm stood a 14 sq. ft schoolhouse. this is where the first 'School" for Priesthood learning was held. It was here at the farm that Joseph and two others witnessed a vision of the Father & the Son in 1831. The High Priests were first ordained, Joseph and Emma lived here for some time. There twins were born and died here. And they adopted the Murdock twins. 13 revelations in the D&C were given here.
I felt an incredible spirit here as we held our own meeting on the outside patio and then hiking the short distance up the hill to where the "school" once stood.
We arrived in Kirtland at around lunchtime and checked into the Marriott Hotel. (Elder Marriott would be attending the seminar and the hotel staff was so excited that they would be seeing Mr Marriott).
Elder LaRochelle is from Kirtland, Oh and we had made arrangements to meet Elder LaRochelle parents in the lobby and go to lunch. It was a wonderful time. Bro and Sis LaRochelle are just as nice and warm as their son. Bro. LaRochelle is the Executive Secretary in the stake that was hosting the seminar and he had been incharge of a lot of the arrangements. We also met Elder LaRochelle younger brother. Thanks for the nice time.
We headed to Kirtland, Ohio today to attend the Mission Presidents' Seminar. We decided to drive so we could see some of the sites on the way. The first place we were excited to see was
"GETTYSBURG". It was so impressive. We drove over so many acres and saw dozens of monuments and plaques. We found the Museum and Visitors Center and saw wonderful displays and movies and an incredible round diarama of the war. We got a map of the grounds so we could identify the monuments and what happened where. There are over 1000 (a thousand) monument each identifying the battle that took place their and which infantry was involved. What an inspiring area. We also went to the cemetary, which is a place where Lincoln gave his famous "Gettysburg Address". The little town of Gettysburg had the old original buildings. One of the amazing things about them was that the doors were right at the street with no front yards. I love the history we are experiencing here in the East.