The Most Important Thing of Our Lives

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May 26, 2013

Dear Family and Friends,

This week was a full week. Monday I worked at the Land and Records Office. I worked on the file of Edmond Ellsworth, who was one of the pioneers who lived in Nauvoo. He was a son-in-law to Brigham Young and came West with the vanguard company. He then went on a mission to England and came West again as the captain of the first handcart company, arriving in Salt Lake in the fall of 1856. I was updating the file, and the research was rather interesting.

That night was a “Sunset on the Mississippi” rehearsal. It was Elder Ballard’s night to play a harmonica solo and I accompanied him on the guitar. Our first “Rendezvous” performance will be on Tuesday the May 28th . The solos are rotated. My next solo will be June 4, and I will play a couple of fiddle tunes. I will be accompanied by a young elder, Elder Tunell.

Tuesday we had two of the young single sisters over for dinner. Even though Elder Campbell and I were busy all day, dinner turned out miraculously perfect, much of it having been made in the slow cooker. We enjoyed the company of the young sisters. It was a practice dinner appointment for them. After dinner they gave us a spiritual message. It was about being bold in testifying of the most important thing in our lives, our testimony of our Savior Jesus Christ. They sang a hymn for us, “I Know that My Redeemer Lives.” Their voices rang true and clear and it was beautiful.

The next night was even better, with Janet and Sam stopping by on their way to Sammy’s graduation at Oberlin College in Oberlin, Ohio. They arrived in time to tour one site before dinner. We selected the Browning Gunshop. Elder White gave them an excellent tour. Then we came home to have dinner before our performance of “Rendezvous.” Janet and Sam got to see us in action on the stage. We certainly enjoyed having them here, our first real company while in Nauvoo!

The next day, after serving in the Wilford Woodruff home, I walked over to the Sarah Granger Kimball home to get in a walk, and also to see all of the flowers. Many varieties of peonies and other flowers are beginning to bloom. They are beautiful!

On Friday I worked in Facilities Management (FM) again, this time working for conservation. We wore white gloves and cleaned the artifacts in the Sarah Granger Kimball home. Then we helped prepare the food for an FM Memorial Day picnic, which Elder Campbell and I were able to enjoy. We met a new FM employee and his wife, Gary and Debbie Mason. He is from London, and it was fun to talk to him with his British accent.

This week Elder Campbell worked on building a wooden well cover at the Browning Gunshop. He also helped another elder inspect temple housing windows, and he did cleanup in the FM compound.

Yesterday we attended the temple. We were surprised to see Camron Kowallis, formally of Soda Springs. He is now in the Nauvoo Temple district. We visited with him and his wife for a few minutes. He is attending a chiropractic school in Iowa, about a three-hour drive north of here.

Last night we had another performance of “Rendezvous.” President and Sister Gilliland joined our cast, which they do from time to time, as needed. President Gilliland played the part of the editor and she acted as the Relief Society President. It was fun to have them in our cast.

Well, that is all for now! We are getting ready to attend a musical “Sociable” put on by the Young Sister Missionaries. We love you all and pray for you every day! Have a wonderful week!

Love,

Elder and Sister Campbell

-Temple view (above)
-Back of our house
-Sister Campbell in Sarah Granger Kimball gardens
-Janet and Sam
-Janet and Sam with Sister Campbell
-Sarah Granger Kimball home

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The Road To Cathage

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Dear Family and Friends,

It has been a great week! On Wednesday we were in “Rendezvous.” We had about a dozen of the newer missionaries join our cast, which made it more fun. We had an interesting experience that night after Rendezvous. We attended the tail end of the family history center’s 1-year anniversary open house. An Elder and Sister Price were helping me locate the resources that are available at the family history center. When they noticed that my maiden name was Burgoyne, she was asking a bunch of questions. Come to find out, Sister Price’s parents bought my parents’ family home in Montpelier in 1957. She was raised in the house that we had built, and she knew Mary when they were in the 5th grade together. Her name was Joy Powelson and her parents were Kay and Beth Allred. She mentioned the fun aerial map on the wall of the den that Dad had put up.

Elder Campbell worked this week on putting siding on a house. They had to order more siding, so on Friday he was putting new wood on the sides of the doors to the cellar for some of the homes. Doing odd jobs that need to be done.

I worked at the Cultural Hall, the 70’s Hall, and at the Family Living Center this week. At the latter I taught about candle making, bread making, and spinning. I also got to work on a shawl loom, which is kind of fun. On Thursday I was on a special assignment to help make puppets for the upcoming fair before the pageant. Each child who participates at the fair will get to take home a puppet. By the end of the day I was pretty good at making puppets. The couple in charge of the pageant are from [my alma mater], Elder and Sister Taylor. (He has a fire extinguisher business and she is a registered nurse who used to work at the hospital.) They have lived in several other places, too.

Friday was different, too, in that I got to work in Facilities Management. They had a group of us cleaning and waxing the statues in the Women’s Gardens and the statues of Joseph and Hyrum on horses in front of the temple, portraying the beginning of their ride to Carthage.

Finally, yesterday Elder Campbell and I took a tour, “The Road to Carthage.” We rode in a bus and took a fully narrated tour of the events as they unfolded on June 24, 1844 through June 27. It really helped us appreciate the prophet Joseph and what he did—what he lived for and what he died for. We went with Elder and Sister Gillespie and some other people, too.

We also had some excellent training meetings, one on Wednesday morning by President and Sister Gilliland and one on Saturday morning by Brother Lusvardi. Brother Lusvardi is over all of the missionary programs of the entire church. I was so glad to get the training to help us work together better as companionships, and to realize how we can be more effective as missionaries. Brother Lusvardi told us about a new pageant in Preston, England, portraying the thousands of converts to the church in the 1840’s and 50’s.

Today Elder Campbell and I worked for a couple of hours in the Riser Boot Shop. We had a few visitors, and Elder Campbell explained to them how the shoemaker would make shoes. I told a bit of the history of George Riser, who joined the church in 1842. Tonight we had dinner and district meeting at Elder and Sister Taylor’s home. So it has been a very busy day and a very busy but rewarding week.

I hope all of you have had a good week, too!

Love,

Elder and Sister Campbell

-Elder Campbell singing in Rendezvous rehearsal
-Same
-Elder Campbell putting on siding
-Sister Campbell with statues
-Sister missionaries who worked on the statues
-Standing on the actual old road to Carthage
-Left to right, 3 sister missionaries, Sister and Elder Gillespie, Elder and Sister Campbell

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A Mother’s Legacy

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May 12, 2013

Dear Family and Friends,

Happy Mother’s Day, all mothers! I hope you are having a wonderful day! It has been a very nice day here in Nauvoo. The sun is shining and there is a balmy breeze. I will share with you my Mother’s Day poem, which I wrote into a song some years ago.

A Mother’s Legacy

She lulled the baby and kissed the hurt,
Baked all the bread, and pressed the shirt,
Sewed little dresses, everyone,
Nurtured the sick, worked in the sun.
She turned to Him in time of need.
“God, bless this child!” I heard her plead!

Now I sing my own babes to sleep,
Though laundry piles and dust get so deep.
Each day seems shorter than before,
Someone is teasing, milk’s on the floor.
Problems are solved on bended knee,
All for the faith that she bequest me.

Such is the legacy my mother gave me. That legacy of faith was the substance that got me through many difficult times, that helped me with my lofty ambitions, and that served as a springboard to get us all the way out here in the Midwest on a mission. Such is the faith of my mother of rich pioneer heritage.
Thank you, Mom!
Thank you, Grandma Mary Lou, too, for all of the faith that you instilled into your son, which has much to do with him being willing to serve another mission, and for him being the wonderful man that he is today!
Happy Mother’s Day to both of you, and to all of you wonderful mothers. You are all great examples to me.
This week has been a little slow for me, as I caught the bug that Elder Campbell was struggling with last week. I actually didn’t go work at any of the sites this week, but stayed home most of the time and slept. By Friday, Elder Campbell’s birthday, I was feeling a lot better. We went out to dinner at a Mexican restaurant in Hamilton called El Camino Real. It had pretty good food. Saturday we didn’t do much, either. We did do our show on Wednesday and Saturday evenings. We also did our “Sunset” practice on Thursday evening.
Elder Campbell finished the restroom project with his work crew on Friday. He finished tiling and grouting and hauling garbage off to the dump. The floor was made to look like an old barn floor. The only thing left is the stalls and the fixtures, but Elder Campbell will be on to a new project on Monday.
In Sunday School class today the teacher, our Brazilian Elder Munjos, stood up to teach the huge class. He said that this was probably the largest class he had taught. The people he was teaching were the most qualified people than any group he had had. But he wanted the real teacher to teach the class, that teacher being the Holy Ghost. Then he presented a lesson on the Law of Tithing. He drew examples out of the class members and from the lesson manual.
We learned that tithing is a law that was for a period in the early days of the church, largely ignored. When President Lorenzo Snow became the prophet he promised the Saints many blessings for paying their tithing. One blessing was the moisture that the whole area so badly needed. Another was a blessing of prosperity not only for the individual members, but for the church as a whole. All of these blessings came to pass, after a severe trial of the faith of the Saints.
Elder Campbell and I continue to pay our tithing. It is a law that has been a continual blessing as we have lived it throughout our married lives.
We trust that you are all well! I will write more next week. I just found out that I will be playing a violin, viola, piano trio in Sacrament meeting in June. We will have to start practicing together.
Love,
Elder and Sister Campbell

In the Women’s Gardens, the Nauvoo Monuments to Womanhood

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We Performed Last Night On Stage

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May 5, 2013

Dear Family and Friends,

It has been another great week! It started with a couple of hot and humid days (up in the 80’s), just a taste of what’s to come. Then a cold front came in. We heard that some of you got snow. We got lots of rain for a couple of days straight, and it was cold again, down in the 30’s at night.

I got to work with some of the young sister missionaries again. They are so good at sharing the gospel message and remembering the details. Today Elder Campbell and I worked together in the Browning Gun Shop and Home. What an awesome place to work, and what a wonderful and talented man Jonathan Browning was. It was a special day to work together with Elder Campbell. I told the history of the man and he demonstrated and talked about the gun aspect of it.

Yesterday while getting some groceries in nearby Keokuk, Iowa in a little store called Aldi, the store was full of young missionaries. Come to find out they were the newly arrived young performing missionaries. We will be working side by side with some of them in the production “Sunset by the Mississippi.” They are fine young men and women from all over. One I met is from Australia. The mission is getting ready for the busy season. It’s exciting! Sometime soon about 120 pageant performers will arrive, as well. At church we fill up the whole chapel, overflow, and partway into the gym. If you arrive 30 minutes early you are too late to get a good seat!

Elder Campbell and I have been practicing for our part in the polka and another part called Noah’s chorus. We performed in that segment last night on stage for the first time, and it went pretty well. It’s really fun to be on stage, I think. It is hard to sometimes remember all of the words to the songs, so we need to brush up on that a little bit more. Neither one of us has been on stage before, to speak of, so this is a new experience for both of us. But we get help from Heavenly Father, which gives us the confidence to do it.

Other than that, it has been a pretty normal week. Elder Campbell caught a bug and is recovering from a bronchial infection of some sort. He missed a couple of days of work, but had a Priesthood blessing and also went to see the doctor. He is on the mend now. I have been practicing the violin, trying to get my piece ready to perform. Also the guitar. So that is fun.

We send our love and hope all of you are doing well in your righteous endeavors, and hope that you are continually doing works that are keeping you in the way of the Lord.

Love,

Elder and Sister Campbell

No pics this week