One Sunday, June 8th 2014, we spent the day in New Brunswick. It was a special trip to Saint John for my sister Kayla, but we also made some important stops on the way, and we had time to reflect on our lives, our membership in the gospel, and strengthen the love we have for one another.
We were suppose to go over Saturday afternoon, but that didn't work out. So we decided we would attend sacrament in Moncton instead of getting up super early to get to Saint John for all the meetings. I will say right off the bat that the whole day went smoothly with the travelling, and I am grateful for it! We got to the Moncton ward and we got to see some friends. We had a nice chat with Elder Roberts who misses Charlottetown very much. Mom and Dad also got to see some friends that they knew from when they lived in Moncton before I was born. One lady came up and talked to Mom for a couple minutes, and after she left I asked who it was, and she had no idea. It was pretty funny. Some of the members that they talked to kept saying "has it really been that long since you left here?"... yes actually it has been 22 years, makes you feel old doesn't it? We just had the sacrament and left before the testimony portion of the meeting started, but I could feel the spirit so strong, especially in the opening prayer and the hymns that were sung. I know it was a difficult week for these faithful members. I am glad I could be there to see that they are all well and that they will be able to support each other and their communities on this journey.
We left for Saint John around 10:40 and made it to the chapel there around 12:00pm noon. I forgot how interesting Saint John is because I have not been in the city for a very long time. It is very industrial but old school. Parts of it are like Halifax, but I like Halifax a lot more. My dad has a lot of roots in this ward because he lived there before he went on his mission. On their missionary board, it even says he left from there to go on his mission to Salt Lake City (but really he left from Summerside). He knows a number of people in the ward still and it was fun to see him interact with a couple of old friends. We made it just in time for Relief Society and we had a wonderful lesson on how to be a 'Bucket Filler'. We even got little buckets with bath salts, notes and a print of a quote. They were a sweet group of ladies and I am happy we ended up going to class and not just hanging out in the car... like we were going to do.
The special part of the day was after church when Kayla received her Patriarchal blessing. This is a special blessing just for Kayla to give her personal and direct guidance for her life. As her family members, we could sit in the room and listen as this blessing was given to her from someone that has priesthood authority to do so. It was such a wonderful blessing and I shed some tears for my best friend. She has many wonderful things in store. I am so proud of how far she has come and I know she will continue to stay on the right path, the path the Lord intends for her.
Once we left the chapel in Saint John, Mom and Dad drove us around town. Dad showed us where he used to live (and even tried to get inside, but there was no answer at the door). We drove down to the ferry terminal that goes to Digby, Nova Scotia. I would like to take it someday, because I think that's really neat! We finally made a stop at the Carleton Martello Tower. It was so cool and we could see the whole city. We ate our picnic lunch and laughed together as a family. We took some pictures and dad got a little silly. In that moment, I was so happy to be with people that I love.
We got back in the car around 3:30pm and headed back to Moncton to see the RCMP Office Memorial. We got there around 5:30. It was absolutely incredible to see. There was so many flowers, cards, signs, candles, teddy bears and my favourite thing was a little police car. I imagine that it was a little boy's favourite dinky car, but he just had to give it to the officers that kept his community safe. We went inside the office and signed the condolences books for each officer's family. The atmosphere was solemn and there were kind words by many people on the street, whether they were saying "excuse me" to get by or "thank-you" to many of the RCMP and Police officers nearby. It was a wonderful thing to witness and experience.
I love that I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I am so thankful that I can go anywhere and there is a church building. I am thankful for my family and all that they provide me with, especially love. I am thankful for my sister and best friend for making the decision to receive her patriarchal blessing. She is unique and I know that this will become a source of guidance to her. I am thankful for my parents and my brother. They are wonderful and I am happy to have them in my life. I am thankful for my missionary who put two years on the line to serve the Lord and this church. I love the people who keep this country safe, and especially those who helped Moncton this week in so many ways.
I feel so grateful, blessed, happy, strong and thankful.
June 8th 2014 was a wonderful day.