Called to Serve

Called to Serve

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

May 2015

May was nothing short of wonderful.  Of course, we continued with the basic activities described in the March entry to this Blog.  We stay very busy but it is just such a positive and joyful work that we are simply enjoying the ride.

With the weather now solidly in the “nice” zone, we totally love seeing all of the green wherever we go.  In fact, we have decided that we prefer the green to the white.  It is interesting that places we go throughout the area look so different that on occasion we have actually missed a turn because we no longer recognized the area.  That is a good problem to have.

We have met so many wonderful people and we are just having a fabulous time getting to know them and helping to fill the gaps for the Church where needed.  One of the highlights of the month came when Jim took Elder Geminert and Elder Hamilton to Cooperstown, New York where they went to the National Baseball Hall of Fame.  Of course, Jim loved the trip as much or maybe even more than the Elders since he has been a baseball fan since he was a little boy.  It was a great experience.  Elder Geminert, who is from CA, was a high school baseball player before coming on his mission so President Wirthlin gave him permission to go see it before his mission ends in July.  How cool is that?

One of our favorite members (don’t tell the others) is Crystal.  She is 32 years old and lives in a full time care facility about 20 minutes from here.  She undergoes kidney dialysis every Monday, Wednesday and Friday but never complains.  She has spent many days and nights over the years in our local hospital for a variety of health issues.  She lifts OUR spirits every time we visit her and never fails to make us laugh.  The smile on her face when we walk in to see her is imbedded in our hearts forever.  The missionaries see her every week to share a Gospel message with her and play a game of dominoes.  We were blessed to show up the other day just as they were beginning so we got in on the action. 

Missionaries playing lawn darts!

Participating in "Red Nose" day for a good cause!
With the grass comes mowing.  Jim loves the riding mower!  I’m sure he mowed one day last week before he needed to but that’s beside the point, apparently.  The other mower is a different story and I’ll be taking over that task since it really hurts his back (all that snow shoveling sure didn’t help but will be turned over to the young missionaries next winter).  

Sunset - New York style

April 2015

We had another wonderful month in the mission.  With the improved weather, we are enjoying our work as missionaries even more.  It was nice to see the country without snow completely covering it – green has replaced it!  Our work routines continued to be the same but we did have a break to make a quick trip to Colorado where Jim was recognized by the Department of Agricultural Resource Economics as an inductee into their Hall of Fame.  Jim was totally surprised by the fact that both Brian and Michelle came with their children to be a part of the festivities (along with a few other family members).  When that was over, it was back to New York and the mission responsibilities, which we have come to love. 

Right after our return to New York we learned that the University of Arizona Alumni Association had also selected Jim to receive the Swede Johnson award for his work with students.  Therefore, we made another quick trip, this time to Arizona to receive the recognition.  Then it was back to New York for much more important work.

During the month, we traveled to Hermon, a little town about 25 miles from Ogdensburg where we have a number of members.  We try to get there about once or twice a month.  We also found ourselves going to Gouverneur several times where we are involved with members and investigators (people who are interested in learning more about the church) as well. 

It was a great month and as the month “screamed” by, the weather got better and we just continued to develop a love for the people we serve.  We have especially enjoyed the work with the full-time missionaries, who are terrific.

Shel's Note: Mom sends lots of pictures of her "critters" - I'm thinking she misses her dog, Sugie. (see below) 

HAWKS! Sugie would be running for cover if she'd gone with them!