Nauvoo Week 38 (29 Aug – 4 Sep 2016)
This was another fun and busy week in Nauvoo. On Monday evening many missionaries from Nauvoo traveled to Burlington IA to watch the premiere of the new movie “Singing with Angels.” This is based somewhat on a true story. The main female lead was born in a very delicate condition with the doctors saying that she would only live a few short hours/days. She had an older brother who desperately wanted to see her but was told “no.” Finally, just before they were going to disconnect all the tubes and monitors they let him in the room; he began to sing “I am a child of God” to her soon they detected movement and eventually she was taken off everything and sent home. She grew into an adult and had a family of her own. Eventually, she was successful in being admitted to sing with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir (movie showed all of the intense tests required to become a member of the choir). It continued with her life as a mother, wife and choir member; going on tour with the choir and touching many lives for the better. It shows the love she eventually gained for her “know it all” mother-in-law and the decision to leave the choir, move her family to another city and to care for her in her older years and frail health. It was well done and we all enjoyed it (the theater was sold out and clapped when it concluded).
Tuesday, we went with Elder & Sister O’Brien (Dallas, TX) and Elder & Sister Seger (CA) on a tour of the “Mounds” in and around Nauvoo with Brother Cal Christensen.Cal is one of those who have a firm testimony that the Book of Mormon took place here in the “Heartland” of America – their evidence and story is very convincing. He took us where they suppose one of the fortified cities of Captain Moroni once stood, you could see earth banks that would/could have been built up for protection and a narrow entry way into a fortified city. He took us to another mound on the Iowa side of the river that is a present day cemetery, but he believes that it was built by the Nephites where they buried their dead following an intense battle in the area. It is shaped much like a turtle (they used to build things in effigy to sacred things). The last stoop was the most inspiring. Across from Nauvoo he stopped at a place that has been purchased by several people where they believe the Zarahemla Temple was built. They had done some excavation and found the pure white sand which was used to mark the spot of sacred buildings. As we know the city of Zarahemla was sunk into the earth. It was a very interesting thought; as you stand on the spot of the Temple you look across the river with a perfectly clear view of the Nauvoo Temple. The was a copy of a diary written by an early member who stated that he was standing outside of the Nauvoo Temple with Orson Hyde and he, Orson Hyde, stated that one day in the future another temple would stand in place of the Zarahemla Temple; a very interesting tour.
On Wednesday, the sister missionaries (Sisters Meza & Beach) from Mount Pleasant came to Nauvoo to attend the Temple and we invited them over for lunch. It was fun to get to know them a little bit better. They seemed to like the food and then went to see some of the sites.
Thursday, following our service in the Temple we went to Lomax, IL to a restaurant called “The Pink” with Elder & Sister Curtis (So Jordan, UT). It is popular with the locals and you can’t miss it…it is painted the brightest pink you have ever seen. Three of us had the shrimp plates and Sharon had pizza. It was fun to have been there once, the food was okay.
Friday started off “Grape Days” in Nauvoo. It is an annual celebration of some of the oldest vineyards in America. When the saints left the area in Icarians moved in and planted some of these vineyards and today still produce some excellent grape products.Scott, Malia, Corban and Ruby also arrived this day.Scott then left us and went to sleep with and coordinate about 40 youth and 13 adults that came from his ward in Lake Zurich to Nauvoo for baptisms for the dead, a handcart trek, history tours, firesides, church and a visit to Carthage, IL. Malia and the kids stayed with us in our apartment. The kids were really good and it was so good to see them again. We took Corb and Ruby to the carnival and he rode a couple of rides, bought some cotton candy (“this disappears in my mouth” was Corb’s comment). The youth and leaders stayed at the Nauvoo House in bunk beds. This is really an historic building that is owned by the Community of Christ Church. It had enough beds to sleep about 80 people, an area in the basement for a gathering of about 80 and a kitchen that was good size. The group left for Lake Zurich on Sunday afternoon and Scott remained with us in the apartment. We had a good dinner, played some games and slept. Tom and Scott played golf on Monday morning.
We are grateful to each of you for your love, support and patience with us. We hope that we can set a good example for all of our children, grandchildren and friends by our service to the Lord. The Temple is a Holy Place where you can leave behind the problems of the world and concentrate on what the Lord would have us do. We are proud of our ancestors, particularly our dear parents and the sacrifices they have made for us. We stand taller because we are standing on their shoulders and we love them more each and every day. We do not know everything but we do know the important things in life; our Heavenly Father lives and loves us (He knows us by name), our Savior, Jesus Christ is our exemplar and loving brother, we have a living Prophet on the earth today, the Book of Mormon is true, the Church is true and we have been given a plan to return and live with our Heavenly Father, His Son and our loved ones.
Mom & Dad/Nana & Papa/Elder & Sister Shaw