Sydney…twice in one week!

Hello everyone! This has been a wonderfully full week for us! And it included, not one, but TWO trips to Sydney! Each one is 6+ hours of driving for us. However, the reasons for going have been lovely!

Last week, I told you about our sweet Holly. She was the one who got her visa to Brazil and had to leave in five days! It was a whirlwind few days for her and she felt the stress, but we were able to be with her for a few of her more lovely moments. On Saturday, we went to Sydney to be with her as she received her endowments in the Temple. It was a wonderful experience to share with her and we wouldn’t have traded it for the whole world! Here are some photos we took afterward:

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We all ate lunch together afterward and then headed back to Canberra. Elder Larkin and I went straight to a stake Senior’s “Dine and Dance”. It was lovely and we enjoyed the short time we were there, but we ducked out early to meet up with Holly and some of the other YSA’s at a local mall for a quick get together. There was a warm feeling even though we were all sitting outside in the cold night air. Here’s a photo from that:


It was a long, but full and rewarding day for Holly and for us!

On Sunday, we attended a morning ward and then stayed for the Sacrament meeting of the next ward so we could hear Holly give her testimony. We returned in the evening for a wonderful Missionary fireside. Hearing all the newly baptised members bear their testimonies and the talks and music by the full-time missionaries was wonderful! At the end, we were invited into Holly’s setting apart. It was a little tearful, but a powerful testimony that the Lord is aware of all of us. We said our good-byes (a bit tough) and headed home. Holly flew out the next day for Brazil. We know she has arrived at the MTC in Sao Paulo safely and is beginning her journey! She will be in her mission (Recife) in about six weeks. So proud of her and her courage!

We prepped for our lessons and then taught our classes on Tuesday. It was a cold, wet and windy day…a real winter storm. But we, and our students, weathered the storm and gained a lot of spiritual insights.

On Wednesday, we had our YSA Committee meeting. The YSA turnover was in full evidence as only one committee member there that night was on our committee when we started 16 months ago, and she has just been released! We have a good group at present and got a lot accomplished. Love these people!!!

Yesterday, Thursday, we made another trip into Sydney. We left about 11:30 a.m. and traveled to the Temple/Church complex. We popped into the distribution center to get a few things and then had an hour-long meeting with our new CES coordinator. He’s been on the job only a few days. Our previous coordinator moved to Queensland a few months ago. After a quick stop at the shops across the street we headed to the southern area of Sydney to have dinner and FHE with our mission president, his wife and the other senior couples from the mission. We didn’t account for traffic (we’re really spoiled here in Canberra where there is NO traffic) and arrived a little late. But it was a lovely evening. We actually said goodbye to them, because they are being released (they have been temporary while a new president was called). The new couple will come in and the outgoing couple with leave this Saturday. It will be our fourth mission president while we have been serving. We look forward to meeting them. Here is a photo of our dinner together. The outgoing president was manning the camera, but I posted a photo of them a few posts back.


Well, folks, that’s it for today! We head off this evening for a ward activity as well as a goodbye ice skating event for one of our young men who leaves on his mission in about a week. We send our love to each of you and bear testimony of the work which we do! We love our Savior and we are so grateful we can do His work.

Until next time….



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