Boy, this week has been a great one but also a tough one.
I'll start with the tough part....
The little brother of Antara, our recent convert, killed himself Tuesday morning before going to his first day of high school. We found out as we were driving to Billings, and it was such a shock! He was such a kind, quiet kid and always said hi to us when we were in their home teaching Antara. It's been a tough week for their family. We went over to their home Thursday night and met all of her extended family and spent time with Antara looking through pictures of her brother that she had to pick out for the funeral video. It's been a sad week and we had the viewing last night and the funeral was today. Something that has been amazing to see though is the support of the members of the church-the ward family. Sister Rogers, the Bishop's wife, flew a private plane over to Boise to pick up Antara from school and flew her back within hours of Antara hearing the news. And other members, neighbors of Antara's family, had them stay in their home while other members went into the house and cleaned up everything. The outpouring has been amazing and the family has enough meals provided for them until the end of September! The Spirit of love that has been shown to the family has been wonderful and it has meant the world to Antara and her family. I remember walking into the home and seeing her parents and how their hugs to us said everything....their gratitude, their pain, their love for their family. It's something I will never forget.
When we found out the news, we were driving to Billings to go to the Temple. The Temple is a symbol of love, family, and eternity. Antara has been speaking to her parents about doing baptism for the dead for her brother in a year and her parents aren't opposed to it. I thought how special that would be for them and that one day, maybe, they could all be sealed together. I'm so grateful for Temples and for the hope that they represent. I know with all of my heart that families can be together forever when they are sealed in the Temple, and I know that this life isn't the end for us...it is just the beginning. As I walked into the Temple, peace filled my heart. It's such an amazing place and I have missed being there! It had been over 3 months since I had last been to the temple and I was so happy to have the chance to go before I fly back to Salt Lake. It was definitely the perfect place to be at the point of the week.
In other news, Kyle is progressing and his date is officially set for Sunday!! He has come to church consistently and even made potatoes for another funeral that happened on Friday. We had to leave early for an appointment, but he stayed the entire time and helped out with cleaning up after the luncheon! Terry, who is less active and has been at teaching appointments with Kyle with her husband Wade, was at church too!! We had a girl night with her unexpectedly because Kyle and Wade couldn't make it, and we asked her if there was anything she would like for us to explain or talk about. We ended up talking about Temples :) We talked about eternal families, what temples are, and what we do there. She asked us how she could go there one day and we said by going to church each week, and there she was on Sunday! We were so proud of her!
Also, Bishop Rogers was released this week after 5 good years and Brother Hawkes is the new Bishop! It was pretty bittersweet because Bishop Rogers has been amazing!! But Brother Hawkes is pretty much our number one fan, haha, and he's legit so I think things will go great :) And last night the Rogers switched our dinner so that they could have us over for dinner since it was a big day for their family. They love us and we love them :) It's an awesome relationship.
I am so grateful for the Plan of Happiness that God has laid out for us. I know that we are children of God and that we have a purpose here and a purpose hereafter. I'm grateful for the Gospel and for the truth and hope that comes with it.
I love you all!!!
|A break from driving. Gotta love Montana!!|
Love this sister!!
|Temple pic with the zone!|