Saturday, April 20, 2013

Farwell to AZ...and others

Thursday we locked up the house in AZ for the next 18 months.  We have enjoyed the AZ spring this year.  The cactus blooms have been amazing to witness.  The neighborhood is alive with color...cactus blooms, the red yucca are in full bloom, and the lantana are recovering from a very cold winter.

We are spending the weekend in California prior to leaving for Utah on Monday.  Yesterday I was able to able to visit with a few dear friends from work.  Over the last month I have been able to adjust to retirement life because we have been so busy prepareing for our mission, but I have really missed my association with the people with whom I have worked with during the last few years.  We are excited to begin this next part of life's journey.  Farewell to dear friends.  Not goodbye, but just farewell.  I hope to stay in touch with you through this blog to share our experiences over the next 18 months. 

Monday we fly to SLC and enter the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah.  The first week of training is regarding general missionary service and the second week is specific training on the Church Employment Resouce Centre.  (Yes, Centre...I need to learn the British spelling of many words) 

The essence of the gospel of Jesus Christ is to love God, and love thy other words, I'm third.  God should be first in our lives, then second, we should help our neighbor, and then we are third. 

The Church Welfare Plan as we know it today began in 1936.  The great depression brought many challenges to Church leaders in the early 1930's because of so many people being out of work.  Church Leaders were needing to help people find work, care for the poor, and teach self-reliance.  They expanded the concept of the Bishop Storehouse, created Church Welfare farms and canneries.  This concept has grown into today's worldwide Church Welfare Plan.  Church members and non-members alike are help through the Church program.  The statistics of the assistance provided throughout the world are staggering.  Often the Church has been among the first responders in disaster releif efforts throughout the world.  There are hundreds of Employment Resource Centres throughout the world helping people find employemnt.  In 2011 these Centres helped 147,000 people worldwide find employement.

We are excited to become part of this effort.  We will be working with the people of Scotland and Ireland.  We will be teaching Career Workshops and Resume Writing Workshops.  We will be helping people prepare for the job interview process.  We will be working with Stake and Ward leaders as they assist and counsel with members looking for work.  We have a lot to learn about how business function in the UK.  I'm sure things work a little differently than in the US. 

The journey begins on Monday as we begin our training.  For now...farewell, but stay tuned in for more updates.


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