You've no idea how excited we were to be in Newfoundland. Newfoundland! How many people do you know who have been to Newfoundland? What a thrill! Woohoo!
If you look at the map below you will see why it was necessary to fly. We flew out of Halifax,Nova Scotia and landed in Gander, NF.
We arrived about 10:30 p.m. so basically just checked in, got settled and went to sleep.
The conference was held in the hotel so that was a very nice treat...to not have to drive anywhere in the morning. We ate breakfast there and then got right to it.
Each mission has its own 'formula' for its zone conferences.
Most have a purpose and a mission- themed scripture that they begin each meeting with.
This mission had the most!
A different missionary would stand and share one of the following:
"To invite others to come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end."
The mission vision
The account of the 1st Vision
There was one other scripture but I didn't catch it.
Two missionaries would then give 5 minute talks on an assigned topic.
A great way to get a lot of people involved and participating right away.
President Pratt's message was about honoring the Sabbath day.
He referenced Elder Nelson's talk from last General conference. He said that the elevating spirit and power of the Sabbath would assist members to endure to the end, that honoring the Lord's Day brings promises of greater faith and strength to endure. He challenged the missionaries to greater obedience in this area and offered guidelines on how to be a good example.
Greet people in the foyer instead of the chapel
Be sitting in the chapel, with heads bowed, listening to the prelude music before the meeting starts
Focus on the Sacrament
Reach out to those who were missing
Great counsel for us all!
Sister Pratt gave a beautiful message on doubting our doubts, not our faith.
Our church can be judged by its fruits:
the charity given throughout the world
its happy, healthy members
its army of missionaries
and the lives of its people
(among other things)
Good reminders for us all.
This is at the effervescent Sister Stewart! I dare anyone not to love her. She is a fireball and so full of love for all 'her' missionaries. She and her husband were serving an MLS (member leadership support) mission for the first year but were asked to step into the office as there was a great need there. So they know all of the missionaries very well and have such a fun camaraderie with them.
I'm sorry I don't have a photo of Elder Stewart. Another remarkable thing about them is that they have loved their mission so much and have totally fallen in love with this area that after their mission is over they are going to move to Nova Scotia permanently.
That is the second senior couple we know who have done that.
And see this sister in the middle? She looks so very familiar to me. But as I've mentioned before, this entire mission from the MTC on has been such a deja vu experience. I feel like I've know nearly everyone before.
I talked about how to de-stress.
I hear Dale talking on the phone discussing so many of these symptoms (and many of these problems are caused by stress as well) and many of them can be taken care of and prevented simply by drinking more water. I hope I made a difference in a few missionaries' lives. :)
This is one of Dale's slides he uses in his presentation on safety and self sufficiency.
So many problems, emotional and physical, can be avoided by using good judgment.
Brother Cartier Part 3
Train yourself to listen to the spirit instead of other voices
When we listen and hearken and do what we've felt the spirit direct us to do,
He will give us more- more wisdom, more light, more direction.
You've got to keep seeking to keep finding.
Here a little. There a little.
He is in control of the speed, amount, and timing of knowledge given.
(2 Nephi 28: 30)
If I have any desire for new knowledge, it is absolutely fundamental that I live up to the covenants, commands, and knowledge I have already been given.
What Heavenly Father really wants to talk to you about is YOU!
How are you doing? What do you need? How can He help you?
At the end of the day, the Lord wants one thing to happen when you study the scriptures:
He wants you to come to know Him better and know how you can
become more like Him so you can return and live with Him again.
There was so much more given but these highlights will have to do for now.
Thank you Brother Cartier for sacrificing your time and sharing your knowledge and talents to help each of us become better and more Christ-like.
I think I've mentioned before that after our presentations (which are usually after lunch), Dale passes out a sign up sheet for any missionary who wants to talk with him personally and then they privately meet with him for the remainder of the afternoon, one by one. So we usually finish up right around the same time the zone conference is ending. Most have ended between 4-5 pm.
Brother Cartier flew home right after his presentation, but the rest of the group we came with were going to stay an extra day there in Gander at the hotel for interviews and other mission business.
But as we had finished our business there, we said our fond farewells and thank you's to the Pratt's
and jumped in the car as we had a 2 1/2 hour drive to our next destination. We wanted to get an early start in the morning to fit in everything we hoped to see and do.
We loved these conferences. We loved meeting these fine happy missionaries. Emphasizing happy. The people in this area are happy and the missionaries are happy. A very nice place to be. We loved meeting and learning from Brother Cartier. And we loved meeting the Pratt's. We face-timed with them for an hour or so before they arrived on their mission to give them a little head's up on the medical aspect of things, and Dale speaks with them on the phone all the time, so it was wonderful to meet them in person, feel their great love for the Lord and His work, and for their missionaries.
We love you President and Sister Pratt!
We love the Nova Scotia Halifax Mission!
we LOVE Newfoundland!
You will soon see why!
Our first glimpse...
we pulled into Port Rexton , part of the Trinity Bight, just before dark.
These a teeny tiny communities hugging the Trinity Bay on the Boavista Peninsula.
The view from our window literally took my breath away!
Overlooking the tiny harbor of Ship's Cove
We've never seen this before!
Even though our room did have air-conditioning, this was the natural way to let in just a little of that cool evening air. If you didn't want it, just pull that lever down over the holes! It worked perfectly and was just enough!
I know this is a very random picture but I love it so much!
I love the play of sunlight and shadow, sunshine through windows.
This was the sight I saw as I turned to leave this room in the morning...
again, my breath was taken.
( and again I was expecting Granny's attic! The best surprise!)
A viewing deck just outside our building.
Little fir trees everywhere!
The town of Bonavista.
Pretty little boats all in a row!
is a National Historic Site .
It is preserved as an example of a large-scale salt fishing merchant operation in a Newfoundland outpost.
This Mr. Ryan did alright for himself!
A fish flake
We were told we simply HAD to try a mooseburger
and the place to have one was the Bonavista Social Club.
So we drove out of our way to go there and
they were out of moose! What?
We heard there are 4 moose for every person in Newfoundland!
How could they be out?
So we joined him here instead!
Here is the Social Club... got the name from a Cuban band- they thought it was funny. I asked.
It was pretty blustery and chilly outside so this warm pizza oven was just the ticket. It was a tiny place- only 4 tables and 4 counter stools. They were turning people away. We had a pizza and a very yummy pasta dish and since we didn't get our mooseburger, we felt we needed to try some local specialty so we had the Partridgeberry Bread Pudding with caramel for dessert. Quite good. Served warm with ice cream. Partridgeberry is a thing here. The mooseburger comes with Partridgeberry ketchup.
From sea to shining sea.
The Bonavista Lighthouse
A geologist's heaven!
This rocky island is a Puffin sanctuary in season.
We missed them by just a couple of days.
So sad. I truly wanted to see them.
In season, you can just sit below the lighthouse and watch them come and go like mad.
They burrow and nest in the ground.
They mate for life, have one baby a year, and the little dears are called "Pufflings".
They winter at sea.
Which I think is crazy. Just fly around all day and sleep floating on the ocean.
My very pathetic one and only view of a puffin.
This cutie-pie is what I missed. :(
After seeing all things out on the peninsula, we headed back to the little town of Trinity for one of our main cultural events of our trip... the Trinity Pageant: a 2 1/2 hour interactive play about the history of the community which is told through story and song as you walk through the town. The cast was very talented. The entire concept was unique and charming. It was engaging and well done. We had a real feeling for the people and culture of this wind-swept land when it was finished.
It grabbed your attention and caught hold of your emotions right way as it opened with the National Anthem: "Ode to Newfoundland".
"When the sun rays crown thy pine clad hills,
and summer spreads her hand,
When silvern voices tune thy rills,
We love thee, smiling land.
We love thee, we love thee,
We love thee smiling land.
When spreads thy cloak of shimmering white,
At winter's stern command,
Thro' shortened day, and starlit night,
We love thee, frozen land.
When blinding storm gusts fret thy shore,
And wild waves lash thy strand,
Thro' spindrift swirl, and tempest roar,
We love thee, windswept land.
As loved our fathers, so we love,
Where once they stood, we stand;
Their prayer we raise to Heaven above,
God guard thee, Newfoundland."
I love it!
Singing the sad tale of a love lost at sea.
These two were the main storytellers of the pageant.
Bravo! Very well done! Brought laughter and tears.
We were very blessed to catch the very last performance of the season.
And cancellation hung over this one due to a threatening storm.
It never came. :)
I spy with my little eye...
(in this out of focus picture)
The tiny town of Trinity, Newfoundland.
The Coast of Newfoundland is called Iceberg Alley.
From May through June icebergs of all sizes come floating by these villages and coastlines.
That would certainly be a sight I would love to see.
(A trip for another time perhaps)
We bid thee fond farewell.
You were delightful.