Called to Serve

Called to Serve

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

June Blog

We had another wonderful month in the New York Utica Mission.  As usual now, our month was filled with active work with the less active members in the area and assisting the young missionaries with teaching some investigators.  We continued to serve as volunteers for the Salvation Army’s Soup Kitchen on Tuesday afternoons and their food pantry on Friday mornings.  All of those activities have kept us busy.  We feel so blessed to be having wonderful experiences as missionaries and have come to love the people here in our area. 

Salvation Army Captains Angela & Tim Shaffer.
They were just transferred last week to CT.  

Our building

We occasionally have a break in the action with the missionaries.  We have hosted an activity day on a Monday, which is P-Day.  You will see a picture or two of just such events.  Then, one morning before our District Missionary Meeting, we all went to breakfast at a restaurant that has a “Flapjack Challenge,” which five of the Elders tried to do.  They had 45 minutes to eat one pancake.  The catch was that the one pancake was enormous.  None of our big, strong, Elders could do it.  Again note the accompanying photos for proof of that event.  Apparently only one Elder in this Zone has actually completed the challenge and earned a t-shirt acknowledging his accomplishment.  It was really fun watching their smiles and enthusiasm at the beginning and then the looks of defeat at the end. 

Sister Johnson, Sister Munoz, Elder Peckham, Elder Geminert, Elder Wing & Elder Winkel

Elder Geminert - he's heading home on 7/8/2015

We had several brief excursions away from our area in Ogdensburg.  At the very beginning of the month, we enjoyed a brief visit to Utah where we witnessed the graduation of Victoria (Toria) Knight, our granddaughter, from High School. 

Next we had an activity with the five other senior couples in our Zone and President & Sister Wirthlin at the Eisenhower Lock on the St. Lawrence River.  We were able to watch a cargo ship make its way through the lock.  It is really an impressive work of engineering and is only about a half hour drive from our home.  You may have heard in the news about the small cruise ship out of Montreal that hit the edge of the lock as it was entering – well that happened at this location.  

Then at the very end of the month, we made a quick trip to Saratoga Springs, NY to attend a fabulous concert presented by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.  Along the way, we were able to spend a little time traveling across Lake Champlain in a ferry and then driving through the northern area of Vermont and New York on our way back to Ogdensburg.

Most of you probably heard about the prison escape in Upstate NY.  That took place about 2 hours east of us and so we were very interested in the daily updates.  We were in the town of Malone (where much of the drama took place) the day after one was shot and killed and the day before the other was captured within a few miles of the town.  What a blessing it was that no one else was hurt during that 3 week ordeal.

The spring and summer months here are spectacular!  It is so green and beautiful it helps to make up for the significant winter months.  As we’ve mentioned previously, we live right on the bank of the St. Lawrence River, which is absolutely beautiful.  The St. Lawrence Seaway connects the Great Lakes to the Atlantic Ocean and we love being so close to such an important corridor of commerce.

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