"Grand as it is, planet Earth is part of something even grander- that great plan of God. Simply summarized, the Earth was created that families might be." Elder Russell M. Nelson


Sunday, March 12, 2017
Monday, March 6,2017

Today is Elder Berger's birthday.  The best moments for him were talking to our children and grandchildren by skype.  Erica baked a chocolate cake with a Marx Brother picture on top for Elder Berger to enjoy by proxy.  Gracie and Adam enjoyed a mouthful of cake in Elder Berger's behalf. Elder Berger, quick thinker that he is, grabbed a forkful of the brownies I made yesterday and asked Gracie to hold up a  piece of cake to the camera and he would eat it.  As she held up the cake, he pulled up his fork to the camera on our end and that was one amazed little three-year old girl!

Thursday, March 9, 2017

We enjoyed a wonderful District Training meeting conducted by our elders and done very well via phone.  The topic was faith to find.  I feel great love and sympathy for the challenge in those three words for these fantastic missionaries - FAITH TO FIND.

Our wonderful branch members, the Benesch family, may have to move from their farm that they lease.  The news was quite devastating to them.  They have had one fianncial loss after another in the past five years, one of them over a million dollars lost.  They are wonerful people that we consider dear friends.  Brother Benesch and Elder Berger visited families this afternoon while Sister Benesch and I talked and did a little shopping for her mother.  After, we picked up Chinese food and brought it to the flat to eat along with the fresh peach cobbler I had prepared.  We had a wonderful visit.  In spite of their many challenges, their faith in the Savior sustains them and isn't that what is the foundation and anchor for us all...

Friday, March 10, 2017

We only have one full-time Primary teacher besides myself and Kristin Smith trading off every week for the CTR class and that teacher is gone for two weeks.  Consequently, I am doing the CTR lesson, singing time and sharing time along with Seminary lessons every other day of the week.  It has been a bit of a challenge for this old brain to keep the different topics straight in my head.  Seminary on Monday is the atonement, CTR is on the Priesthood, Sharing time is on the Prophet and apostles speak for God.  Much of this week has been preparing and putting together activities to keep the young ones attention centered on the subject matter and trying to create an environment where they can have at least a few moments to feel the Spirit.

It has always been amazing to me in my lifetime where I have been involved in many areas of Primary, that when the spirit speaks to a group of children, you the leader, can see it as all eyes glue to yours and I always feel great responsibility in those moments to deliver the message the spirit wants them to receive.  The moment never lasts for long and the leader must be prepared, ready and abe to fire rapidly. 😇

Saturday, March 11, 2017

We found a lovely picture of the Savior during the atonement with an angel providing comfort.  We are making a copy and taking it to the less active sister 90 minutes away.  We have only talked to her once in the entire time we have been here.  Sometimes we think she is home and just not coming to the door.  We decided to make the copy and include our testimony of the love the Savior has for all God's children and let her know we would love to see her.  So much of what we do is planting seeds and we will pray that one day there will be a flowering an a harvest for some of these struggling souls for whom we feel love and responsibility.

We were thrilled that the less active sister opened her door to us.  She did not invite us in but visited on the porch and was grateful for the picture.  It is obvious she is struggling.  She is out of work, divorced, has a 12 year old, 14 year old and 24 year old living at home.  Her car is not registered she said so she can't make it to church.  This is her house.

Cute shop with used wares of all kinds that we love to visit when in Glen Innes

We stopped check out this antique store which is selling everything half price before they close.

               Elder Berger is holding a sack full of souvineers for yet to be determined people.

On our way out of town, we stopped at a Gem show.  There were lots of booths with gems of all kinds, rocks and jewelry.  We purchased some things to take home including a beautiful opal for me which I will have set in a necklace when we get home and an opal for Elder Berger to set in his hat band or whatever other possibility he might come up with.

Sweet couple from Maitland, Kevin and Shirley Allan, that we purchased our gifts from.  They threw in some "extras".  They have friends in Maitland that they think are members of the church.  We plan to tell the elders there about this couple at our next week's zone conference being held in Maitland.

We also found this area celebrating the many Celtic settlers in Australia.  Glen Innes has a Celtic music festival here every year.



Sword in the stone and it is definitely going to stay put


These stones line up with the winter solstice.

We were happy to read Erica's blog and discover that our grandson, Adam, made virtual grandparents of us for one of his video games.  This is Elder Berger and I getting ready to bowl. We have SOOOOOOO missed our sweet grandchildren.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Some of our Inverell members came which is so wonderful and we had a visitor family which is also lovely; however, it did add a bit to my stress as that added three children to Primary and I only had 4 boats made which caused some arguing as to who should get them.  The CTR class was on Christ's calming the stormy sea and telling it "Peace Be Still".  I made boats with sails out of empty toilet npaper rolls and put a picture of Jesus inside and the words peace be still on the sail.  I let the kids fill them with gummy worms and put a metal key inside to remind them of the priesthood keys, and the priesthood power used to calm the sea.  I was happy to observe that in the CTR class and Sharing Time, the children did appear to feel the spirit for a few special moments.

Elder Berger had good participation in his Gospel Doctrine class and overall there was a sweet spirit and comraderie in our meetings.

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