Wednesday, June 11, 2014

June 11, 2014-A new baby, a new baptism, a new calling, and a bee box

Dear Family and Friends:

It’s hard to believe 10 days have passed since we last wrote. We are so busy here, that the days pass quickly. First of all if you haven’t heard, Ben and Katie were blessed with a baby boy yesterday, June 10. He was so anxious to join their family,  that he was born in the car before they could get to the hospital. Ben had the privilege of “delivering the baby” himself. There were no complications, and both mother and baby are fine. His name is Jimmy Brett Schultz and weighed 7 lb 14 oz. Congratulations to Ben and Katie!

I am also excited to announce that the sister that came to Nauvoo from Burlington in May, named Zenta, is being baptized on Saturday! You may remember her in one of my letters. She was Catholic, and we bonded about the women’s garden. She called our mission office and asked someone to find “the nice sister who helped me in the visitors center that day, and invite her to the baptism.” I feel so honored that she has chosen to be baptized, and that I in some way helped her feel the spirit. We usually don’t hear about the results of people who come here to visit, so it is great to experience this with her.

This is Zenta

With the elders and young bishop and sisters who taught her

We received a new calling in addition to all our other responsibilities; the president asked us to be coordinators of the Public Affairs of the mission, specifically to be in charge of the Illinois State Fair. This is a huge invitation for Nauvoo to be acknowledged and honored by the state! It is held in Springfield, Illinois, home to Abraham Lincoln. They have asked us to put a program together for opening day, when the governor will be there. We will try and use the Nauvoo Brass Band and the Young Performing Missionaries to sing and dance. They want also for us to bring pioneer games and demonstrations because the theme is appreciating the past. We will have missionaries dressed in pioneer clothes to help with this. We are so excited to be involved with this important activity. 

In addition, we will also go out into the surrounding cities and represent the church and mission  to all the clubs, organizations, chambers of commerce, etc. We want to strengthen relationships with these people, and invite them to come to Nauvoo, so they can learn about this remarkable town, and the people (saints) who lived here. We tell visitors that the reason this place is so important in history is because it was the starting point of the biggest migration of people or pioneers to go across the plains; over 70,000  total went west over many years.  And that Brigham Young is known as the greatest colonizer of the American West.
Serving today in the post office with my friends Sister Curtis and Sister Nuttall
We had over a 600 people through the visitors center from 7 am until 1:30 when we left today. There was a busload of 50 nonmembers who came to Nauvoo to see what this place was all about. They had so much fun going on wagon and carriage rides, viewing the musical, “The Promise,” and visiting in the sites. People are amazed that there is no charge for any of it, and that there are so many volunteer missionaries. I personally took 2 couples around and explained why the saints were driven out of here by persecution. They had so many questions, and very interested. Many many families who came today told us it was their first visit.

With Sister Scott and Sister Curtis. Fun sisters and we are all neighbors. 
We live next door to each other.

Here I am serving at the Log Schoolhouse with Sister Barnum

Yesterday I had a tender experience in the Lyon Drug Store. A family of 7 came in; parents and five children. I didn’t pay too much attention to each person and just starting giving the tour. When I got to explaining the “bee box” which is a cute clever way they used to catch a bee to find their hive and get honey, I noticed their little daughter about 5 years old had her eyes closed. Then I realized she was blind and had a little white cane. She was in the back, and I asked her to come up and hold the box and feel and touch it. She just lit up and was so happy I involved her. I was so touched by this amazing family who already had five children, and were expecting number 6! What a challenge that mother and father must have. They were members from Kentucky, and had come to have their children experience Nauvoo, to strengthen their testimonies. That’s what I love about this mission. We meet such wonderful people from all over the country, and get to tell them the faith promoting stories of the saints who lived here.

We only serve in pioneer sites once a week so we don't get many pictures like these. They are from the Family Living Center.  Young Single Sisters-Sister Hansen and Sister Munro.

L to R: Sisters Dahle, Boyle, Tucket and me

My faith and testimony grow stronger every day. I thought I already had a strong foundation in the gospel, but I learn so much each day that builds and strengthens my testimony even more. I have grown to love these humble people who sacrificed so much. I love the Lord, and feel honored to represent him here on this mission. I am grateful for his atonement, and I understand that the way we can truly show our love for Him is to serve him and his children who are all around us.

We love you all so much, and are very grateful for your support and encouragement. It is hard to miss out on important events like births, baptisms, reunions, etc. but we know without a doubt this is where we are supposed to be, and that this mission call was inspired. Any of you who are becoming of age to serve either a fulltime youth mission, or a senior mission, please do it! Make it a priority, and plan for it. Don’t procrastinate. It is the most amazing experience you will ever have!

Love Elder and Sister Schultz

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