MISSIONARY EPISTLE FOR WEEK ENDING JULY 3, 2016
From Elder and Sister Elkington
Monday we picked apricots from the Santa Clara Church Orchard. We then delivered them to a Native American who is incapacitated. She was very appreciative. This is the second time we have taken her apricots in the past month – she has been attending Church since the first time. We spent the rest of Monday preparing food for Heritage Park Branch FHE (Family Home Evening). We took five of the children from the Shivwits Reservation to FHE and had to make two trips because one of them had to get back early for boxing. (We were just grateful he cared enough to come to FHE).
We met our new Mission President, Zachary Smith, on Tuesday. He and his wife have a great spirit about them. We are looking forward to serving under their leadership!
We also spent some time making apricot jam – which we plan on taking to Native American branch members. We met with Sister “T” on the reservation and gave her a lesson on The Plan of Salvation and testified her family could be sealed in the temple so their two deceased children could be sealed to them. She was quite emotional as we discussed this. She said she tried to read Elder Nelson's talk from April Conference to her husband and had to stop reading because she was so emotional. We feel this family is ready to implement the Gospel in their lives.
We met with Sister “M’s” family and taught them a lesson on Jesus Christ as their Savior. Afterwards Sis “M” thanked us for teaching her grandchildren. She said their behavior is much better when we are there.
We picked produce from the Heritage Park Branch garden and delivered it to six families this week. This provides needed temporal food – but the visit associated with the delivery provides spiritual nourishment and love from their Father in Heaven. We feel blessed to be His messengers.
We received a phone call Saturday morning notifying us of the death of a granddaughter, Amberley. Amberley played a significant part in bringing us together. About 2 ½ years ago Sister Elkington(Then Beverly Smith) asked Elder Elkington if he would go to University Hospital in SLC and give her granddaughter, Amberley, a blessing. Amberley has struggled with a faulty heart most of her life and was in the hospital because of it. Since then, Elder and Sister Elkington have married and now Amberley has died from heart failure. While we knew this could happen, the timing caught us by surprise. She was only 25 years old.
We are grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and our understanding of the Plan of Salvation. We are grateful Amberley had the privilege of coming to earth and gaining experience for 25 year – but we still miss hers. We are assured she is happier now than she has been for some time. We commend her to her loving Father in Heaven and His Son, Jesus Christ.
We have been blessed to have Mark and Lorie Wallentine and Ryan, Chloe and Natalie with us the last couple of days. They insisted on getting up this morning and stripping their beds, laundering the bedding and remaking the beds. This certainly lightened our load! It was great to have family stay with us!