Friday, December 20, 2013

Our Fist Zone Conference

Loved our first Zone Conference!  It was a fun one, because it was combined with a Christmas Party. When the missionaries arrived at the Stake Center, they parked their cars in two long lines and opened up the hoods and the trunks for inspection.  Jack was there early to help with that.

Jack's checking the oil.
Sister Creager's checking the tail-lights

Sister Garlic checks the tire pressure

Next on the agenda was three hours of training, done by the Zone and District Leaders.  They did an amazing job!  One of my favorite segments was done by Sisters Burbank, Willis and Belyea.  They talked about the importance of using the pamphlets.  They did a little role play that depicted something that actually happened to them as they taught an investigator.  They had been teaching him about the Word of Wisdom.  He had previously overcome addiction to drugs and alcohol, but the Sisters wanted him to give up coffee also.  He said he knew that the alcohol and drugs were bad for his body, but he didn't see any harm in coffee.  They had him read the pamphlet so he could understand why he needed to quit his coffee habit, and he agreed that he'd work on it.  Then they had him read the bullet points in the pamphlet in the part about giving up harmful substances.  One of them was "Dispose of harmful substances, and do not get more."  The Sisters asked him to give them his coffee.  He wasn't ready to do that.  He agreed to think about it and pray about it, but he needed some time.  The Sisters left, and hadn't been gone 10 minutes when he called them.  "Come and get my coffee."  Then one of the Sisters went up behind the clerk's table in the front of the chapel and retrieved a 3 lb.(?)  jar of Maxwell House.  Classic!

In another training segment, by Elders Noyes and Zurita,  Elder Noyes told of an experience he had when they were asked to check on a couple of young brothers who had both planned on missions, but had suddenly stopped going to church.  Elder Noyes said they sat and talked with the brothers, and that he had the distinct impression to promise one of them that if he went on a mission, he would find a young family and baptize them.  Even more specifically, that he would find a young, sixteen-year-old girl, and baptize her.  The young boy was deeply affected by that promise and started going to church again.  He has filled out his mission papers and is waiting for his call.  Elder Noyes said that he has only had that happen twice during his mission, but the experience affected him profoundly.

These young missionaries never cease to amaze me!  They are so strong, so valiant, so qualified!  They have been endowed with the power of God to do His work.  Of that, I am sure.

After training, the missionaries were told to go into the Relief Society Room and pick up their mail and media orders.  Everything in that room was very well organized!  I was impressed!  Each chair was assigned to a missionary and all his/her stuff was on or in front of the chair.

After the training session, we had lunch, served up by the Relief Society Sisters in the 3 Wards that meet at the West Columbia Stake Center.  Food was amazing, and they went all out decorating the tables and making little cookie-cutter ornaments for each of the missionaries.  Bless their hearts!

After lunch, we had skits, video presentations and musical numbers.  I'm hoping to get some pictures from Sister Holm.  We laughed so hard at the skits and videos, and the music was fun and beautiful!  Sisters Willis, Burbank and Belyea sang a beautiful song about our hands being the hands of Christ - to do His work.  

The song about hands was so perfect for what followed.  We all went into the chapel and watched "Ephraim's Rescue. "The missionaries loved it, and it really impacted them in a spiritual way.  Great and amazing Zone Conference!!!

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