Monday, September 30, 2019

Mission Journal,1st Day Training

Discrete selfie before devotional.
It still seems so odd to be on a mission without a companion. There was a brief moment where I felt close to my first companion whose funeral I attended last Saturday. I also felt like Grandma Elinor was at my right shoulder. Someone told a story that I can't verify in anyway that a figure from church history was standing over her left shoulder offering spiritual guidance. As I said, Grandma Elinor is on my right.

The setting is much nicer than walking into old Knight Magnum Hall on the edge of  the BYU Campus. The Joseph Smith Building is the Hotel Utah and was quite something in the old days. We opened with the Monday Mission devotional in an old ballroom on the mezzanine level that is now a chapel. The "Elijah" Choir was very good. I could join if I want to hang around Wednesday evenings for practice - and show up for every Monday devotional, I guess.

The message was a presentation on the special projects of the Church History Library that has missionaries assigned. Interestingly, I know three people currently working on three different projects. A woman married to a guy who still works in my old office is on the Emmeline B. Wells project. A guy in my ward is on the Missionary Database, and his wife is on some secret project. I hope I don't get a secret project or these postings will be very short-lived.

Before the devotional, we were handed our missionary name plates and our ID cards. After, we went to the main lobby for pictures with the mission president and then over to the COB ("Church Office Building") for Security to take our pictures and connect them to our cards. Then it was up to the Mission Offices on the 3rd Floor to the training room, a few rows of computers with our name tags on them. I am right up front and center. There's a nice guy on my right, a former advertising man--and a nice sister on my left who apparently has never married because I asked about her Welsh surname. I said I could help her track them down in Wales.

Here are the notes from Sister Sara M. Fenn and then President Jerry D. Fenn of the Mission:

Sister Fenn-
Her husband was mission president in Chicago (so was my wife's grandfather some years ago. I'll have to mention that to them).
They have 1,000 missionaries in this little area (Temple Square and a few buildings in three directions).
It is all about the Spirit of Elijah.
They are baptizing more than any mission (because we are family history and baptisms for the dead count).
"Service is the real key to joy." -Pres. Heber J. Grant

Pres. Fenn-
Grateful for us.
This service is part of our covenants of of sacrifice and consecration.
When we sacrifice, faith grows.
Power of Elijah - the manifestation of Holy Ghost for greater recognition of obligation to our kin.
Jacob re: Zenos - the Lord remembers Israel both Root and Branch - ancestors and posterity.
He has come to love and appreciate ancestors.
Married into Mormon Royalty [sigh - I already knew his wife was daughter to Elder Bruce R. McConkie - I can drop names like the best of them, but, oh well] he is a mongrel. [I think there is too much disparagement of those not with big names in the church and too much attention to those that have them]. His family is of the last wagon. - He does have Martin Handcart ancestors. [sigh].
The Hearts of the children will turn to their Fathers
The Book of Mormon is a record of how God makes covenants with Israel
The Blessings of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob are the Temple - blessings of eternal life.
Moroni, D&C 2 - Plant in the hearts of the children the Promises made to the fathers and the hearts of the children shall turn.
The Promises are the Abrahamic Covenant from the fathers and their wives [mothers].
1. Gospel
2. Sons have Priesthood
3. Missionary Posterity
4. Eternal lives
5. Celestial Marriage - Family continues forever - All that the Father has.
[I did have a thought about Elinor that it also includes the promises of Zion as yet unfulfilled]
D&C 84 About Missionaries - I will go before you and be on the right and the left - the Angels will bear you up - these Angels are our own kindred dead [I believe this].
Joseph F. Smith told in April Conf. 1916 about a vision (before his of 1918) about heavenly messengers that we are not separate but closely related to our kindred who have departed - They can see us better than we can see them. The see us. They love us more than ever.

Pres. Fenn's doctrine is pretty sound. I particularly appreciate the references to ministering angels through the Holy Ghost being our own kindred dead.

We then has some basic training on computers. I hate to admit when I learn something new and basic about Windows, but there it always is. The young Elders do all the tech stuff. They had some very good multi-media presentations in the devotional earlier, but when the power-point failed, it was the young Elder that went up quick who was able to fix it.

We had more training from a mature Sister in the training zone:
Families are gathering on both sides of the veil.
Our dead - not The Dead is our emphasis here (I don't know 'bout that. But it makes some sense).
The Lord is not pleased when one member of a family is the family historian - should be all.
Then she showed some video clips--
"We Are the Gatherers" Bradley D. Foster - Seed of Abraham - can we see ourselves in the story?
Our Heavenly Father doesn't want anyone left out in the storm. We are helping Heavenly Father save his family.
"A Sacrifice of Time" Pres. & Sis. Nelson. We are the strong links in the chain from Ancestors to Posterity. The challenge is to prayerfully consider what sacrifice of time we can make - Indexing is important.
"The Promised Blessings of Family History"
We are Saviors on Mt. Zion
Refining influence
Testimony of life beyond the veil
Joy - satisfaction - joy in family
Protected against the adversary
Turn to Fathers - Mothers
Linked to Fathers - Mothers
Blessings of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
Personal power to change, repent, learn, be sanctified
Heal that which needs healing.
(I may have missed a few in my note taking).

Lunch was good in the COB cafeteria. Saw a few people I know. Spoke the guy whose father is from our ward and is in the same care center as my wife's mother.

I am setting a personal goal to avoid traversing South Temple into my old work haunts. We'll see how long I can make it....

We also had afternoon training on anti-harassment/discrimination and on "active shooter." Sheesh! I might as well be a fed again! (It was hard to stay awake).

And we'll see if anybody down there is monitoring missionary blogs. I'm just trying to tell it like it is which is still pretty upbeat and spiritual and all.
Continue in Missionary Journal here.
Back in Missionary Journal here.

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