Saturday, June 21, 2014

June 21, 2014 Zenta's baptism, Rendezvous & surprise Whiting cousins

Hi Friends and Family, 

I can't believe how fast time flies! We have been out here 3 months- we reported here to the mission on March 21. We are super busy right now because summer is here and visitors to Nauvoo are coming in record numbers! We average 1,000-2,000 people per day in the visitors center. It is hard to talk to everyone that needs help to know where to go and what to see and do. The young single sister missionaries help us each day.

     Last Saturday I had the privilege of going to Zenta Logan's baptism. I drove over to Burlington Iowa, about an hour away with 5 senior single sisters. 2 are from California; Laguna Hills, and Hunt. Beach. Their husbands have passed away. We had a lot of fun with just "the girls". Zenta was so excited to see us all there to support her. Many of the local ward sisters were there too. She is a single sister with one son, and some of her friends were there too. It was very spiritual and a special experience. We felt honored to be part of it, and be invited to it.

     This past week, Harry and I had our debut performance for our Rendezvous vignette. I was very nervous because both shows (7pm and 8:15pm) were full! We did fine, and remembered all of our lines. We only perform it once a week, and another couple has the part the other day. Twice a week we also perform in the Sunset by The Mississippi show on the outdoor stage as a specialty number. Harry plays bass, with a guitar and banjo backup, while we sing a duet. He also tells funny jokes. People seem to love his act, because they love to laugh! We will only do this show until Aug. 9, that is when the summer season ends, and the Young Performing Missionaries leave. And we do our vignette only six months, so none of you will see us when you come out next year. That's kind of sad. But we are sure having fun, and enjoying this mission.

     I had a neat experience 2 days ago. I went to land and records here to find information on my ancestors who lived here; Edwin Whiting on my mother's side, and the Hyrum Smith's on my father's side. A young girl there who was also doing research, heard me say Whitings. She asked what family I was from, and I said Edwin Marion Whiting, and she said, "Me too!' (that's unusual because Edwin had five wives.) We were from the same wife, and same son. And my grandmother, Martha is the sister of her great grandfather, Lynn Whiting. What a small world! She is here for the Nauvoo Dig- they are digging the area where they believe Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack's log cabin was. She is not a Smith, but is an archaeology major at College of S. Utah in Cedar City. We sat and bonded over memories of the Whitings. Their branch of the family doesn't come to the Whiting reunion anymore. She can't even remember going, since she is only 20 years old. I shared information with her for her research about my great grandmother, Martha Ann Smith Harris. She was so excited.  So I went to the dig the next day and signed up to help. This is the last week so I am going on Monday. It looks like a lot of fun.  They found the southeast pillar of the home this week, and the stone walkway that went down to the Miss. River in front of their home.  It is just north of the Nauvoo House and across the street from Joseph Smith's Homestead house. They have also found many artifacts there like spoon, dish pieces, glasses, and more. They told me that in 2 years, 2016 they will begin the dig at the site of Hyrum Smith's home on Water Street by the river- just down from Joseph's home. We should all plan to be there. It is so exciting to be here around our ancestors homes.

     I must hurry and send this as we have to leave for one of our  shows.  We hope you are well and happy, and doing what you need to do to help "hasten the work". This is the Lord's church, and he needs all of us, especially as the times get harder! We love and miss you all. PLEASE PLEASE WRITE TO US! JUST ONCE A MONTH, at least, to keep us posted on your activities.

Love Elder and Sister Schultz

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