July 27, 2013
Dear Family and Friends,
This week has flown by. Several interesting things happened. First of all, while I was serving on Monday in Pioneer Past Times, a place where children can dress up in pioneer costumes and/or play old-fashioned games, some old friends from Soda Springs came by, Ed and Eunice Johnson. They are now of Fairfield, Iowa. With them was their daughter, Lydia, and her husband and children, who live in Utah. That was really fun to see them. Ed and Eunice said they would be back, maybe when daughter Debbie comes to visit.
A couple of days later a visitor in the Family Living Center asked me where I was from, seeing that I was a Campbell. Come to find out, he is a second cousin to Elder Campbell. He is from Pocatello, William McKee, on his way home from serving as mission president of the Tennessee Nashville Mission. They had to come home a year early because of a series of very serious health issues of his wife, which all came up at once and unexpectedly. You can read about it at http://desne.ws/Ob6VPIG. They were here in Nauvoo to see their son and his wife, who were in the Pageant this last week. (Each week a new family cast replaces the old one, while the core cast stays for the whole month.) It was pretty interesting to visit with them. I just feel badly that Elder Campbell didn’t get to see them. It will definitely be on our list to go visit them when we get home. RaNae McKee is one miracle woman, and very blessed to still be alive, having gone through a heart attack, two strokes, and heart and brain surgeries, all within a four-day span. She looked like she was doing very well, under the circumstances.
Also, all week long, Elder Oaks and his family were in town for a family reunion. The Utah part of his family came on the train from Salt Lake City to Burlington, Iowa. I’ve been meaning to tell everyone that you can ride the train to get here. It’s cheaper than flying. Anyway, Elder Oaks spoke to us in our missionary training meeting on Friday. The subject was unusual for a training meeting, but I suppose not unusual for the lawyer that Elder Oaks is. He talked of the finances of Joseph Smith and the church back then, based on some research he did as a young lawyer when he lived in Chicago in the 1960’s. His research, among other things, explains why the church got no settlement for all of the land it owned in the 1840’s.
Later while I was again in the Family Living Center, Elder and Sister Oaks and some of their family came in for some of the tours. It was kind of nice, although they just all blended in with the others who were visiting, as it should be.
Elder Campbell spent most of this week working on the siding of a two-story house. He enjoys that type of work better than the other work he has done here. He enjoys working with Elder Gillespie and Elder Mendenhall.
Last night I did my solo again at “Sunset by the Mississippi.” It went well. Tomorrow I will play the guitar for Elder Ballard again. Only four more performances of the show are left for this season.
Another interesting experience is a friendship Elder Campbell and I are developing. We keep running into a young man from Keokuk. He is often in Walmart riding in an electric cart when we go there for groceries on Saturdays. We have invited him to come to the Pageant with us next week. He is pretty excited. He is somewhat handicapped. It will be a fun thing to take him to see it. We will let you know how it goes.
Today (Sunday) we served together in the Brick Yard. We taught people how they made bricks back in the 1840’s. It was a first time to serve there for both of us. It was kind of fun. Nothing lent itself to taking pictures there. But a lot of people came. When they come to the brickyard they get a little brick that we make just for visitors. At the end of one tour, one of the visitors said she saw her mission president and his wife last night, President and Sister Pond, who were there to see their grandson play in the band. Asking a couple of questions, I discovered, you guessed it, Mom, it was cousin Diane and Steve Pond. I am hoping to see them, if they haven’t already left to go home. I think their grandson must be one of the bagpipers. I will try to find out tonight.
Well, gotta go. The Pageant core cast are putting on a show for us tonight. I love you all!
Elder and Sister Campbell
P.S. We just met Ben and Suzanne Holmes and their children. Suzanne is a daughter to Diane and Steve Pond, and looks a lot like Diane. Diane and Steve left this morning, so we didn’t get to see them. Ben is a bagpipe player and their son is a bagpipe drummer. They have only been here for one week, so we haven’t seen them play yet. But we will this week! It was fun to get acquainted a little.
-House Elder Campbell is working on siding (above)
-Look at the size of those mission horses!
-What a beaut!
-Ed and Eunice Johnson with daughter Lydia, her husband, and daughters
-Sister Campbell, Eunice, Lydia
-Sunset taken by Elder Campbell