Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Stake Youth Zone Conference

We were asked by Denham Springs Stake if we could do something to help their youth learn how to be good member missionaries. We decided to hold a youth zone conference. It was a fun day. Their stake youth ran the morning session where we heard a spiritual thought from every unit. The missionaries ran the afternoon session. We started with a musical number of the Elders and Sisters singing the Medley of Armies of Helaman and Sisters in Zion. They liked it so much that they asked them to sing it for their Stake Conference this Sunday. We really do have some beautiful voices in our mission. We then had a panel of missionaries that answered questions that the youth had turned in that they often get asked and didn't know how to answer. It turned into some great discussions.  We then  had Our Assistance teach them how they can use Joseph Smith's personal experience in the Sacred Grove as a powerful tool to share with their friends. We Had Sister Bunker and sister Pilette role play it for them and let them try it. Then Elder Broadly taught them how to share the "Blessings of the Gospel" with their friends. We took them in the cultural hall where we had tables set up and our missionaries each took a group at a table and role played real live situations they have with their friends and helped them find ways to invite them to church, activities and to hear the missionaries. Our missionaries did a great job with them and the youth loved it. We concluded with President Woods telling them what a force for good they can be and that Elder Maxwell said that the reason they were saved for this time is because they had the greatest capacity for obedience. He shared with them his experience of going to a high school in LA where there were 25 members in a student body of 4,000. He told them about the "mormon tree" and how several people were baptized because they liked hanging out there. We then had a testimony meeting where we got to hear these strong youth share their love for the Savior and their understanding of His Atonement. The spirit was very strong and we were all definitely "edified together"

Here is a Real Force For Good

What would we do without these wonderful people. They are all serving in places that need a lot of love , leadership and patience. They are reaching hearts and finding people that need the"touch of the Master's hand" in their lives. We had a fun day touring the World War II Museum in New Orleans and then had lunch at Superior Grill on St Charles street. It was our last outing with elder and Sister Ward. They were our CES couple. They loved those young people and I'm sure they will be sorely missed for their compassion and wisdom. 

Hugs and Best Wishes

Another group of great missionaries go out to join the "Member Missionary Force," and what a force they will be. We know because they changed lives and blessed all of us with their faith and testimonies. We are missing pictures of Elder Hansen and Hadley  because we had the pleasure of having their parents come pick them up. It is always so fun to meet the families of our missionaries and tell them first hand how much we love their sons. Thank you and we will miss you.  

Nothing like breaking your arm and having surgery two weeks before you go home. We had a wonderful ward mission leader that took care of Elder Skidmore in his home the first week so his companion could work with the zone leaders to keep the work moving forward. I never heard one word of complaint from Elder Skidmore. He was full steam the last week, pink cast and all. 

This was a group hug after tender expressions of love and brotherhood. Along with drawing closer to their Savior, these young men form a bond of brotherhood in joining their faith, hearts, and testimonies in the cause of Jesus Christ.