Sunday, August 14, 2016

Elders Away!

It was a blizzard of white shirts and a tangle of ties!  On July 20, 2016 
ten missionaries, all elders, prepared to depart the mission.  Three members of 
this departing group were the first missionaries that President and 
Sister Mullen met while they were at the MTC:  Elder Merriman, 
Elder Rampton, and Elder Bennett.

This was a hardworking group of elders.  The completion of such honorable
missions was surely worthy celebrating, and we did just that!

With so many elders at the table it takes several shots to get
them all in.

President Mullen was still in his apron from cooking flank steak!

All the young elders were at the dining table, but we had other
special guests.  Elder and Sister Hubbard (their backs to the camera)
had just arrived to begin their service on the 20th.  They were joined
by the Halls, President and Sister Grant and Sister Malmberg.

Gathering for testimony meeting.  

The elders celebrated turning in their TIWI cards.  No more 
electronically monitored driving!

No words can capture the feeling of an outgoing testimony
meeting.  But look at them!  Happy, yes, but in this picture
you can almost see the light that comes from these 
seasoned servants of the Lord.  Their testimonies were as 
wonderful as they look.  

After testimony meeting, dessert, and one last companion study 
(with President Mullen), the elders tried to settle down to sleep.  

Some slept in the bedrooms upstairs, some rolled out blow-up 
mattresses in the living room.  Soon it was time for breakfast. 
So busy cooking French toast and sausage, the photographer 
didn't catch pictures of breakfast except in the assistants arrived. 

Bags were loaded in the vans, prayer offered one last time.  

Farewells said.

A last picture...

...and they were gone, leaving behind only their miracle stories
and the fruits of their labors, those with whom they had 
shared the gospel of Jesus Christ.