Sunday, May 6, 2012

Is it really spring?

We took the opportunity last night to look through our former blogs. Looking at the pictures of Canada it may seem like a mission is a vacation. Be assured, it's not! A mission consists of many little things, none of which take a lot of time or effort, but your presence may be felt by others.

Monday we went through the pictures in the church library, finding out which ones were missing and needed to be reordered.

Tuesday was the first of May - that means it is finely spring in Canada. We had district meeting in Belleville, following which we walked up and down main street. After living in Campbellford, Belleville seems like a big city. It even charges for parking.
Downtown Belleville
On Wednesday we took a long morning walk along the Trans Canada Trail then back again on the road. This was to make up for Monday and Tuesday when we took short walks. Elder Stubbs told us about the adventure of driving on Devil's Valley Road when he was on an exchange in Campbellford. We found it, but walked instead of riding. We figure it was about a 5 mile walk.

Spring brings large fields of dandelions
I always knew real tractors were red, not green
Get ready for the wild ride (or walk)
We took the risk
This would be no problem for the 4Runner, but the Honda?
Open fields

 On Thursday we helped at the Family History Center since Mary had a doctor's appointment. Our morning walk was just around the neighborhood.
A house by the high school, they must like red and yellow
The driveway monster

Friday we decided to explore Peterborough. We were able to pick up some gluten-free supplies and see the Peterborough zoo. It was a good break.

Tall totem 
Mountain goat
A waterwheel, of course
Miniature village in the mall (Sister Wheeler didn't think she needed to be in the picture)

 Our morning walk on Saturday was along the Trans Canada Trail going west. It follows an old railroad bed. Sister Wheeler was hoping to find cardinals in Canada. We saw our first one of the season, along with the common RWBB (red-winged blackbird).

The Canadian Saguaro (a nice bird hotel)
Country bridge
Old barn
Our first cardinal

 By now you are wondering if we did any missionary work this week. After reviewing our list of members in the branch we have determined that our greatest contribution will be in supporting the active members of the branch. The average age of those who attend is 65. Most are dealing with health problems, from open-heart surgery to cancer. We find ourselves talking to them (through visits or on the phone) and substituting for them in their church callings. They are working with less-active members and friends of the church with our help and support. During the week we have been in contact with almost every active member of the branch as well as several who are less-active. In each case it may just be an encouraging word, but we hope it helps them get through the challenges of life.

Yes we have had a couple of successes this week. Saturday afternoon (the best time to find people home) we visited with Priscilla and Heather, whom we had not previously visited in their homes.  Priscilla attends now and then. Following our visit she came to church on Sunday and bore her testimony. She was planning to attend anyway, but our visit helped reinforce it. Heather is a young lady who likes to travel for extended periods of time. She just returned from working at a zoo in Texas. Next month she will be off to Europe, India, and Thailand. We were able to meet her and had a delightful visit.
Priscilla and Sister Wheeler
Heather, the world traveler

We had an example today that shows that any influence with children is never wasted. The Campbellford Holts have two young foster daughters which has given us a small primary. Today during sacrament meeting, the oldest one went and sat on Elder Wheeler's lap while Sister Holt was bearing her testimony. She sang "I Am a Child of God" then turned around to Sister Rowan, the primary leader, and said, "See, I can sing it without any help". We don't know what kind of future is in store for the two girls, but the seeds of the gospel being planted in their souls at this young age will bear fruits some time in the future.
Our primary

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