Thursday, June 16, 2016

Meeting Elder Dallin H. Oaks

Dear family and friends,

A missionary’s life is full of different experiences every day!  That’s what makes it such an adventure!

We had a great week serving and working!  Last Tuesday, we had the opportunity to meet with all the missionaries in our mission as well as the entire England London South Mission.  We converged on the Hyde Park Chapel around 9 am, anxiously awaiting the arrival of Elder Dallin H. Oaks, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.  He and his lovely wife and Elder and Sister Kieron, an Area Seventy came about 11:00.  So for nearly 2 hours, the missionaries waited, and studied.  We were asked to sit very quietly while in the chapel.  It was quite an experience to be among these dynamic souls!  After Elder Oaks arrived and before the meeting started, they asked all the missionaries to file up one by one to shake their hands.  The senior couples were seated together and we were nearly the last to file through the line. (Mom and Dad, we were able to meet Elder and Sister Record, a vibrant and lovely couple who serve in the office in the South Mission. They are in my parents ward in South Ogden and they love “the Glausers”.  I guess their granddaughter, or daughter had a thing for Brother Glauser and knew he would one day become the President of the United States!!! We had planned to meet up at the London Temple later in the week, but were unable to catch each other, but we know where they serve!)  It was a very sweet experience to shake a prophet’s hand!  He was very kind.  Elder Kieron expressed gratitude for our service.  He and his wife were also very wonderful.  We were inspired by Elder Oaks words.  He spoke of missionary work in Europe as being very challenging, where people commit to read, attend church, listen to discussions, but then don’t show up.  He spoke of the misnomer that a successful missionary is one who baptizes a great number of investigators.  Our call is to teach repentance and baptize converts.  But we can’t get caught up in the numbers.  He made the comment that he heard a missionary in Denmark say that every time a European missionary knocks on a door, an investigator in Latin America is baptized!  Every mission is different.  He said, we need to focus on teaching the people that Heavenly Father loves them and is their Father, and that the Savior came to earth to make it possible for us to receive immortality and eternal life.  Even with that information, they can at some future day be perhaps softened to the point of accepting the gospel.  I wish I could explain the feeling we felt as he spoke.  As missionaries, Brad and I were buoyed up and left feeling that we CAN make a difference in this country.  We may not find many friends to baptize, but with all the inactive and nonmember friends we have met here, we can let them know that we love them and Heavenly Father loves them, and testify of the Savior.  The other wonderful thing about being with the missionaries, is that we were able to meet up afterward with the missionaries that served in Cambridge and were transferred to different areas.  It was like meeting up with our children again!  We also were able to meet Sister Daines, a beautiful missionary who is the niece of Michelle and Boyd Craig, our dear friends from our Orem ward!  And she was being trained by Sister Lawler, one of our missionaries we served with and loved in Cambridge.  Even better than that is, this week is transfer week and Sister Daines has been assigned to serve in Cambridge!  She even has red hair!!  She truly is like a daughter!

We have been busy this week moving and helping clean houses of ward members who are moving!  We are making up for the fact that we won’t be around to help both sets of parents move in the next few weeks!!!  Brad has been a trooper and really was a help to the Tilbrooks to organize and load up several truck loads for them.  I got to help clean bathrooms, and reorganize and box up stuff from garages.  We worked hard.  It felt really good to work so hard!  We had a chance as well to teach a temple class, teach a discussion with the sisters on the restoration, teach a new member lesson, attend the temple with our ward and some new converts.  (I even got to work in the baptistery handing out clothing!), attend one of our YSA’s rowing competitions, feed YSA’s, teach primary, check out new flats for missionaries, and skype with our kids during their family reunion in St. George!!!  We had a great week! 

We are so grateful that our kids got together for a few days in St. George.  All of them were there!  I will include the stripling warrior pictures and other pictures of the family! 

We feel that the Lord has truly blessed us.  Rick, a man we were teaching with the Sisters asked us if we had ever experienced hard things in our life.  Of course, we have, but at the moment, I had to really think what those things were.  I feel that the Lord has blessed us with the strength to deal with hard things.  He has eased the burdens which have been put upon our shoulders, that even we cannot feel them upon our backs.  That is what the gospel and making and keeping sacred covenants do for us.  It is hard to explain those miracles to those not of our faith. Our hearts are brimming over with gratitude!

Another miracle happened just this week.  Since meeting with Elder Oaks, I’ve been praying every morning that we will be able to meet people in our comings and goings that are receptive to hearing about the gospel.  Well, Tuesday, we went on our monthly Costco run, and happened to run into a lady that was so anxious to talk to us.  As she spoke, she said she lived at one time in Aylesbury.  I asked her if she knew Elder and Sister Glauser.  She was shocked out of her head, as she said over and over, I can’t believe it, I just can’t believe it.  Her name is Pat Knight and dad and mom were dear friends when they were here on their mission.  We met her daughter Sarah as well.  She loves them!  She has left the church as has Sarah.  When we asked why, she explained the situation that a member of the church had said something very offensive to her.  So she left and hasn’t gone back.  She begged us to come to her home sometime for “tea”.  I can’t get her out of my mind, as I feel it was not a coincidence that we ran into that day.  She doesn’t want anything to do with the church and doesn’t want the missionaries to teach her, so we have been praying about what it is we can say when we meet up with her for tea!  She is a very lovely lady and as much as she said she doesn’t want anything to do with the church, I sensed she feels something missing from her life.

We love you all!  We feel a rejuvenation for the work and love what we are doing!  This is God’s work!  We feel Him close to us and will cherish this experience forever! 

Happy Birthday to Todd Jackman and Jaylee Nelson (June 12) and Grandma LaDawn Jackman (June 13).  We are so grateful for these special people in our lives.  Also, we wish our dear fathers and sons a very Happy Father's Day this upcoming Sunday!  We love these noble men in our lives and thank you for your goodness!

Have a glorious week!

With all our love,
Dad and Mom
Papa and Grandma
Brad and Vicki

June 2016 family picture in St. George

our stripling warriors- from l. to r. Asher Brown, Charlie Jackman, Grayden Miles, Russell Jackman, Samuel Bishop, Jordan Jackman (oldest to youngest)

another stripling warrior pose.  We want to do this in 18 years again

the beautiful mothers

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