This last week we completed all of the digitizing for Vinton County. We also had a small project doing a cemetery record from Oklahoma dated 1832 and another small project from Marietta and completed those also. We thought we would never complete even the first Vinton County field order and it has turned out we completed that and three more field orders with 3 1/2 weeks to spare. (talk about hastening of the work!) We have truly been blessed!
The picture at the top is of Wanda and Elizabeth Rowe and the Elders assigned to Jackson. Wanda feeds the missionaries every Wednesday evening and is also the Relief Society President. She is so delightful and we love her so much! Elder Brown and Elder Mortenson are also terrific. Elder Brown lost all of his hair after coming on is mission but we like the "Dallin H. Oaks" look on him. We are losing him tomorrow, however because he fell last Sunday and broke his elbow (for the second time). He is being sent home for surgery (two months early). We sure will miss him! He has been such a hardworking and humble servant of the Lord.
It is so beautiful here now with the fall colors on all the trees. Everywhere we go the views are breathtaking. I don't know how to see such beauty and not know it was all created by such a loving Heavenly Father. What a master artist He must be!
When we returned the books to Marietta last week Judge Lane's secretary had us go over to the wall by the stairway to see a plaque they had made commemorating the work we and the Grammers did there. What a nice surprise! We preserved their records for all time and they have preserved recognition of our efforts! Pretty cool!
We visited a store in Cincinnati on Columbus Day since the courthouse was closed that David has been wanting to see. It is a gigantic world food market called Jungle Jim's. Before you go in the door there is this huge jungle display with a lot of jungle animals (not real) and waterfalls, etc. Then inside there are more international items than you ever knew existed. There must have been twenty different kinds of soy sauce. They had produce items David never even knew existed and he was once a produce manager. If you wanted to buy a seafood item you had to "catch" it first out of one of the fish tanks. It really was amazing. The cheese selection goes on forever! (pictured below).
We can't believe we are so close to the end of our mission. It has gone by so fast! We have enjoyed it so much and learned so much! Some of the things we have learned are:
1. Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ really want and need senior couples to serve missions.
2. Heavenly Father through Jesus Christ really does answer prayers.
3. Our ancestors and loved ones who have passed to the other side are VERY close by and are aware of us and are intensely anxious to have their ordinances completed if they weren't done on earth. In fact they are obsessed with this being accomplished. If it is that important to them what does that mean for those who are still living and procrastinating receiving these ordinances or not honoring the covenants they have made? It is seriously worth pondering!
4. The atonement is real and includes everyone! There are no exceptions!
We love each of you so much and are so excited to see you again. We can't thank you enough for the support you have given us, especially your prayers! They have truly made a difference and contributed greatly to our success. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!