We had a great week! We had Elder Schwitzer, from the Quorum of the 70, come to our mission to visit Monday-Wednesday. He came to Buffalo on Monday and was there for their Mission Leadership Counsel and then a Zone conference. On Tuesday he came to Rochester and had a Zone conference with the Palmyra Zones and Rochester Zones. It was really good. He talked about several things with the missionaries:
First, he discussed how Satan changes things that are wrong to appear right. How making words appear good and not bad. So many things that have been wrong in past years are now acceptable and approved. That was so true—especially looking at society and how things are degrading so much.
Second, he talked about bring the 1 back to the fold. He showed the picture of Jesus with the lamb about his neck. He told how Christ had directed the Apostles to go leave the 99 and go after the 1 that was lost. We are all asked to do this—help recover those that are lost. He mentioned that how a lamb of that size would probably kick someone’s head pretty badly when they tried to get them onto their shoulders and carry them away. He suggested that this lamb would have been injured, afraid, ashamed, depressed, or hurt. This lamb couldn’t make it back to the fold on his own. He had to be carried and helped. Our brothers and sisters are the same—they need us to carry them and help them back. It was very interesting!
Third, he talked about the Book of Mormon and how much education Joseph Smith had when he translated it. Joseph Smith didn’t have much more than an elementary education, yet he brought up the following incidents that are in the Book of Mormon:
1. Military strategic plans
2. Operations of government
3. Jewish custom and rights
4. The prophecies of ancient prophets
5. Scriptural writing styles and then different prophet writing styles
I’m sure I didn’t get everything from this portion, but it was very eye opening. He quoted so many scripture and explained things in a way I hadn’t thought of before.
After the meeting, the missionaries left and we fed them a luncheon with 12 people. I made Chicken Waikiki and we had salad and dessert. Sister Schwitzer was so friendly and we all loved her. She told of experiences of being in Russia as the Mission President (wife) and how she had been afraid and that the Lord had strengthened her. We can do hard things with the help of the Lord!
We went to the Temple with the Haggerty’s on Friday night and the on Saturday we went over to Seneca Lake Camp with the Spencer’s. We had a good time there. The weather was around 60. They loved it! We went across the stream down by the amphitheater and when I went to cross to the next rock I stepped onto a rock with lots of moss. It was so slick and I fell down onto my knee and I was afraid that I had messed it up, but I was alright. I got a little wet, but that didn’t slow us down. (my pants were a little green) We went on to Sauder’s (the Mennonite store) and looked around. They have things I haven’t seen before in regular store.
We then went over to the Whitmer Farm in Fayette. We had a great tour there and heard so many things about the restoration of the church. It is a wonderful place to go and learn about the translation of the Book of Mormon.
We went over to Batavia after we got home and went to the Haggerty home to help them get ready for the Branch Christmas party. It was a huge Turkey dinner and there was SO much food! Sister Lehman and some of the Primary ladies had chaired the night and had gone all out! It was very nice and there were so many people that I didn’t know or recognize. We had several investigators and some that were family members of the branch members. I think it was very successful. There was a part of the program that was especially fun, Elder Merrill was one of Santa’s helpers and passed out presents to the kids. He did a good job and one little girl was so sweet and gave him a gift.
We have so many blessings! We live in a wonderful country that had freedom of religion and allows us to make choices for ourselves. We have the gospel in our lives and that enriches everything we are or do. We have the most wonderful family; extended and immediate. We have all the necessities of life and to spare. We have the love of our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and they WANT us back again. How great are our lives??
We pick up a sister for church each week and we thought it was weird how the landlord had cut the bushes. They are cut down low and some of the bush is left going through the fence. LOL Also there are lots of stray cats in the backyard and someone has bought igloos for them to live in.
Someone got a little (alot) carried away with Christmas gifts to us. Thank you so much! What a wonderful idea; the 12 days of Christmas and 1 for us and the others for friends here.