Sunday, August 26, 2012

Another Baptism

August 25, 2012 was a special day. We were able to witness the baptism of Cassandra.
Cassie has a big smile and sweet personality. It was a joy to be able to teach her.
Cassie was baptized and confirmed by her husband's Uncle Alan, who is also the ward mission leader.
It was a great day for us too!
Cassie and her husband Ryan.
Cassie and her sister in law Kandi who was a big support to her. Kandi is also the sister in law of Beth, who was our first baptism!
"Know ye not that he was holy? But notwithstanding he being holy, he showeth unto the children of men that, according to the flesh he humbleth himself before the Father, and witnesseth unto the Father that he would be obedient unto him in keeping his commandments."
2 Nephi 31: 7
It is HIS example that we follow.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Mission Conference in Eugene

Recently we traveled to Eugene to attend two days of a mission conference and to have a little R and R on the days in between.
We were able to travel through the Mc Kenzie Pass. It's closed in the winter and early spring, so this was our first chance. This is a shot of the lava beds that are all the way through it.
Standing near the Sea of Lava area.
This is an informational sign explaining the Sea of Lava.
An observatory on top of a hill of lava.
A nice view of the Three Sisters Mountains from Mc Kenzie Pass.
After arriving in Eugene we attended the first of two conferences. This one was for half of our mission and we were instructed by Elder Steven Snow, who is the Church Historian.
Each of us were able to shake hands with Elder Snow who is seen on the right.
What a great opportunity it was to be instructed by Elder Snow. The meeting lasted several hours but it seemed like the time flew by. The missionaries in this picture are from our zone. We were lucky to  be able to sit so close. In this segment we were being taught the chain of missionary work from finding to retention.
Here is the wonderful Cascade Zone shown with President and Sister Young and Elder and Sister Snow. Some people may recognize Sister Francom, second on the left. She used to live in Las Vegas!
We have mentioned in our emails how much we miss attending the temple as it is far away from where we are currently serving. When we found out we would have a few extra days in Eugene the first thing we planned to do was attend the Portland Temple.
It is as beautiful on the inside as on the outside. There is alot of marble throughout the whole temple. We liked the fact that the floor plan is similar to Las Vegas so it was easy to find our way around.
The temple: a blessing in our lives.
We spent a little time in the Visitors Center which is near the temple.  
Our second day of R and R was spent driving down the coast and enjoying the ocean.
This was one of the strangest things we saw. It reminded us of Robinson Crusoe, a great book, by the way, that we highly recommend!
A view of the ocean from a jetty.
Another strange sight. Oyster shells by the side of the road!
Umpqua River Lighthouse, a working lighthouse. We found it on the map and had to find it to take a picture for Michelle who loves lighthouses.

Our final day in Eugene was another missionary conference. This one was with the entire mission. It was great to join all together as missionaries with the same purpose: TO INVITE OTHERS TO COME UNTO CHIRST BY HELPING THEM RECEIVE THE RESTORED GOSPEL THROUGH FAITH IN JESUS CHRIST AND HIS ATONEMENT, REPENTANCE, BAPTISM, RECEIVING THE HOLY GHOST AND ENDURING TO THE END.
We knew we would have an Apostle visit but were surprised to have several more general authorities.
Elder Neil L. Anderson
Elder Ronald Rasband of the Presidency of the Seventy
Bishop Gary Stephenson, Presiding Bishop of the Church
Elder Richard K Hansen of the Seventy
It was amazing to be able to be instructed by all of these great men. An experience we will never forget.

More exploring

There are so many beautiful things to see in the area of our mission. We enjoy those days when we can explore. As our area is so big, we usually combine visiting with sightseeing.
Relaxing at Emigrant River. This is where Elder Terry fished a few months ago. He has had the chance to fish there again and had a great time.
After visiting some families in a town called Frenchglen, we drove partway up into the Steens Mountains. It was neat to see these wild horses running around.
This is a view of Blitzen River. And no, there isn't one named for Dasher or Dancer or Rudolph or any other reindeer around here!
Think there are any fish in this one?

Monday, August 20, 2012

Malheur Cave

A few weeks ago we took an interesting field trip. We had been hearing about Mulheur Cave from several of the locals and decided to check it out. One Monday, which is our prep days, we drove out to the area where it was and stopped in to see a family in the Crane Branch to find out exactly, as it is located on their property. Even following their directions we almost missed the path that led to it. But at last we arrived.
Here I am at the entrance. You may notice the unusual symbol on the left side. I will explain that in a minute.
Inside... I have only been inside a cave one other time in my life. That was Lehman Cave in Northern Nevada which is all lit up except for a point where the guide turns the lights off. I tried not to notice the noises overhead which could have been these:

Bravely we went in further. We had flashlights, but they weren't as bright as we would have needed to be able to explore as much as Elder Terry would have liked.

Bleachers. Remember the symbol outside the cave that I mentioned? It turns out that this cave belongs to the Masons. They used to have their meetings inside the cave and had bleachers set up for people to sit on. And way before then, Indians would hide out inside. And way in the back behind the bleachers is a lake. We didn't make it that far because of our lack of good lighting. Probably one of the most unusual road trips we have taken so far!