Dear family and friends,
Sorry this blog post is late! I’ll have to just combine 2 weeks worth! Some weeks get so busy that I am not able to write, so it is what it is!!! I’ll just mention some highlights from the past couple of weeks.
This is the time of year when we get to host BYU students who come for 8 weeks to attend classes at the different Cambridge Universities. They have changed the program this year in that the person who directed the students is no longer in place. So Brother Paul Kerry , who was the director, is now serving as a volunteer. What an incredible man. He is a “Fellow” at Oxford as well as a visiting Fellow at Cambridge. Because BYU has just installed a new dean who oversees this program, no one really knows what is going on, including us!!! But we have met the students and find them confident, bright, friendly, and extremely on the ball! We love them already! There are 22 of them as of right now. With that size of group, we had to find a place to hold FHE. In the years past, they have used the Quaker’s church. The Methodist’s have a beautiful church just across the street from us, but they have never wanted Mormon’s using their building. So, our goal since we’ve been here is to try to build a positive relationship with the Methodist minister. We attend their Wednesday morning coffee and biscuits social on occasion, we rent their car park for our FHE parking, and we have volunteered with them in helping the homeless during the winter months. This has been an incredible blessing, as we’ve come to know and love them, and I think they have come to know and trust us. So when we prayerfully approached Allison, the minister about the possibility of renting a room in their church for FHE for the next 2 months, she very graciously said, “Yes!” In fact, she came to our home and we had a wonderful conversation! She knew quite a bit about our faith. I asked her how she knew so much. She did a paper on Mormonism and listened to missionaries. One thing, she said that I like about your church is the fact that you know how to do missionary work. Those missionaries are gorgeous!!! She is anxious to sit down and have a discussion about our doctrine and how it compares to the Methodist sect. We, of course, are very interested in doing the same!
Scott, Lisa, Ruth and Hamilton Hardy and Janet came for a visit, YEAH!!!! They got here Saturday night and stayed with us through Monday afternoon. It was so fun to see them, hug them, and visit with them. It was fun to show them off to the ward members. Hamilton got to pass the sacrament. Our neighbor took us on a walking tour of the early history of Cambridge from the Roman times. The weather was nice, but the tour got really long. So, I think we exhausted them to the max. We chatted nonstop it seems and then Monday, went on a walk through city centre and around the Cambridge colleges, and stopped in for a bit of fish and chips! They left on the train for London, Monday night, then we headed into London on Wednesday and joined them to see the matinee of “Wicked”! It was fantastic! The girl who plays Mary in all the recent Bible videos plays the part of Glynda. Their voices were spectacular! We enjoyed a delicious Thai dinner, walked to the LDS visitors center, then went our separate ways! It was so fun to spend time with family! We won't see Ruth for about 2 years as she will be on her mission when we get home. What a great family I have! It meant so much to us to have them spend some time with us here!
We booked a hotel in London as we had a mission zone conference with Elder Kearon on Thursday. What an inspirational experience. His main message to us was how to become an exceptional missionary. He gave us 7 things that really inspired us: 1. We need to know who we are—that we are children of Heavenly Father. 2. We all have choice—choose to be happy. 3. Be the message 4. Don’t worry so much, just work hard! 5. Make changes aggressively—Be happy—Be authentic. 6. Attack the morning (get up, exercise until you sweat, eat a good breakfast, study wholeheartedly). The way you start the day will determine the success of your day! 7. Star the things pertinent to you and act on it, don’t just take notes, but act on those things. We had to leave early as we had to get back home to prepare for Institute, but what we heard was magnificent!
Time is flying by. We are very busy, which is good! We are loving our mission! We love you and pray for all of you. Have a wonderful week.
With all our love,Dad and Mom
Grandpa and Grandma
Brad and Vicki
We had a massive hail storm! some of the pieces were the size of a dime!
saying good-bye at the tube station--and laughing of course
looking for a hat for Hamilton and Scott
just the right hat for Janet!
a selfie while waiting for Wicked to start
Lisa, Hamilton, Ruth, Scott and Janet waiting for Wicked