Thursday, October 2, 2014

October 2- Surprise Visitors, New Callings & Meet the Mormons

Dear Family and Friends,

            I’m so sorry that it has been 3 weeks since we last wrote, so this letter may be a little longer than usual. Life is always busy here in the Nauvoo Illinois Mission. Besides serving in the Visitors Center five times a week, we have served in Carthage, in the Family Living Center, and in the Brickyard (Harry) and Tin Shop (Nancy). Not as many people are coming into Nauvoo, now that school has started, but we do have a constant stream of persons who plan this as a special trip, and several bus tours, like Mormon Heritage, etc. Instead of averaging 2,000 per day like in the summer, we average about 2-300 per day, but we are thankful for those. And I am amazed all the time of how many nonmembers and foreigners come through here each day. Last week we had people from Bangkok, New Zealand, Ireland, Scotland, Denmark, and Quebec. We had 4 church members from Germany here on their way to general conference. Then we had 2 nonmember couples from Poland who spoke very little English, but loved all the historical sites and learning about American pioneer history. We love to tell about what the Mormon people believe. I give all of them lots of pamphlets, and Books of Mormon. We have them in about 15 languages. We feel that Nauvoo is the “Salt Lake City or Temple Square” of the eastern United States. Many come here who can drive in a day, and feel the same spirit as going out to Utah.

Serving in the wonderful Brigham Young Home
            We are so excited! They just announced this week that the British pageant will definitely be back next summer! At first they had said no, but when they saw that the numbers doubled, and it was a great missionary tool to explain the “falling away and restoration of the gospel” in Europe, many Protestant people have joined the church because they get the connection- between proper authority, and a living prophet. Please, if you can, in any way come next July, come to Nauvoo! It truly was life changing for me, and for thousands of people. In that month alone we had over 65,000 people.

 This past week we had the wonderful surprise of three of our daughters come to visit! Nanette (who brought her 1 year old daughter, Stella), Amber, and Heather (who brought her 6-month-old daughter, Poppy Mae).  These two babies were born while we were on our mission and we had never seen or held. They told Harry, but surprised me! I was so excited and could hardly contain myself emotionally. We had so much fun showing them around, playing with the babies, going to the temple, wagon rides, and our last day, we went to Carthage Jail together (where Joseph and Hyrum Smith were martyred). It was a very emotional time to share, but was also emotional having to say goodbye until next summer when all of our children will be coming in August. Thank you so much for all of you who helped make their visit possible! The dads who took care of the children, and any who gave them financial help, we so appreciate you!

(I will put the pictures of their visit below my letter so the letter doesn't become lost after the photos).

We just got the final approval to go forward with the Christmas Program. So on December 21st and 22nd, “The Miracle of Christmas” will be performed in our Stake Center. Many steps have led up to this, and we feel the hand of the Lord in making it happen. Elder Schultz met with the Stake President and 12 bishops, to present his ideas and music. They were all on board and so supportive! Then he and President Gibbons met with each minister and priest from the local churches to try and include them and get their support: the Catholic, Presbyterian, Methodist, Lutheran and Community of Christ. They felt a positive cooperation from all of them. Christmas is a time that can unify Christian religions!

This will not be an easy undertaking! There will be a 60-voice choir, a 30-40 voice children’s choir, a bell choir and a chamber orchestra. This program is borrowed from our good friend, Randy Johnson who wrote it and has performed it for the past 6 years in the Carlsbad/Del Mar area in California. By the way, he and Carolyn, his wife, came out here last week to celebrate their 37th anniversary. We had fun with them, visiting, going to dinner, and the temple. We are so grateful to him for his help in bringing and sending all the music, arrangements, sound tracks and videos/media that go along with it. We are trying to get a lot of attendance from the areas around here with larger communities, like Burlington, Keokuk and Fort Madison, Iowa, and Carthage, Quincy Illinois. Please pray for the success of this amazing program, and if you can come out here in December we would love to have you!

            Besides working on this program in our spare time, I have been asked to be on the committee for a big Thanksgiving dinner on November 22nd. We are inviting all the wards and branches to bring nonmembers or less actives here for us to host them in a few of the sites, ride on wagons, and then have a big Thanksgiving dinner. The food will be provided by all of us missionaries. This is another way to bring people to Nauvoo for the spiritual “experience.” There is a lot happening all the time here.

            Last of all, I want to tell you that yesterday in our training meeting we were shown a preview of the new movie, “Meet the Mormons” that will open in mainstream theaters on October 10. It is the greatest movie and everyone of all ages will enjoy it! The photography is amazing, the people they feature are so interesting, from all different countries and age groups. The church is asking us all to go on “” and request to have this movie shown in your local theaters. There is a place to type in your zip code. PLEASE do this immediately. They say the first week is the most crucial! Or the theaters won’t show it longer. ALSO please post it on your Facebook page, Instagrams and emails- everywhere you can think of who may be following you. There is a link for sharing a “trailer” of the movie. I promise it is an amazing movie! So professional, and it makes you laugh and cry! I can’t say enough about it! You will be so proud you are a Mormon after seeing it. And best of all, all proceeds go to charity, so any money that is paid goes to a good cause, and is tax deductible.

            I love this gospel, and being on a mission! I have such a strong faith and testimony in the restoration, and feel the urgency of the Lord hastening His work. Please be part of it! Share this movie with all your friends- EVERYONE!

We love and miss you all, and look forward to your future visits to this amazing city!!

Love Elder and Sister Schultz

Pictures of Our Daughters' Visit
It was fun having surprise visits from our children. 
(These pictures are from my daughters)

Driving from Quincy to surprise Mom. Dad knew. Mom was so surprised.  Heather and amber were in 1 car and dad and Nanette in another.

Nanette & Elder Schultz

Heather, Nanette, Poppy, Me & Amber

Heather, Poppy, Me, Elder Schultz, Stella & Nanette

Stella Steimle

Stella Steimle

Poppy Mae Georgianna

Nanette & her 1-year-old Stella

Darling Grandbabies, Poppy & Stella

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