Monday, March 31, 2014

Cubbies Compete

Two B7 Cub Scouts - Thomas Larson, a Webelo, and Ashton Gardner, a Wolf - participated in the annual Pinewood Derby on Saturday, March 29. The event, where Thomas won 3rd place overall, was combined with the B3, B6 and B8 wards and saw about 25 other racers all who worked hard building and racing their cars. 

The pinewood derby is a racing event for Cub Scouts in the Boy Scouts of America.  Cub Scouts, with the help of parents, build their own cars from wood, usually from kits containing a block of pine, plastic wheels and metal axles.

Thank you, Cub Master Roma Goldhardt, for helping and supporting these boys.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Farewell, Sister Bonnie Ball

Our petite and classy Bonnie Rae Matthews Ball, 83, passed away on March 20, 2014 at her Bloomington home surrounded by her family. Born in Los Angeles, CA, Bonnie Rae grew up in Rigby, Idaho but when her father passed away, she moved with her mother to Idaho Falls where she attended high school and met Richard James Ball, the love of her life.  Her mother later re-married and soon Bonnie found herself traveling and living in Arabia, Africa, and Europe. While Richard was on an LDS mission in Germany, she attended the University of Idaho, joined the Delta Gamma Sorority and graduated with a degree in Home Economics.  In the spring of 1954, she and Richard married in the Idaho Falls LDS Temple. They would have celebrated 60 years of marriage this May. 

Bonnie and Richard lived in Provo, Utah while Richard finished his schooling and Bonnie taught home economics at Provo High School. A talented and accomplished seamstress, she was also Mom to two children: Deborah and Bradford James.  When the family moved to Southern California, Bonnie loved the warmth of the California sunshine, caring for her yard, and serving as Primary President and on the Stake Primary Board. The Ball family returned to Utah and have resided in Bloomington since 1972.

Bonnie's sweet spirit will be missed among the members of the Bloomington 7th Ward.  Until we meet again, Sister Ball.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Reilly Dove is Ward's Newest Member

Reilly Dove, grandson of Marvin and Vicki Dove, began his “spiritual journey of a lifetime” when he stepped into the font at the Bloomington Stake Center to be baptized and confirmed by his Grandpa on Saturday, March 15. 

According to Sister Dwan Young, former General President of the Primary organization, "Baptism is the beginning of a new life for each of us, a life of purpose.  The Lord is very clear as to what it means to keep his commandments, come into his fold, and be called his people who are those 'willing to bear one another's burdens, that they might be light;

"Yea, and are willing to mourn with those who mourn, yea, and comfort those who stand in need of comfort'."  (Mosiah 18:8-9).

The 2nd grader at Bloomington Hills Elementary School is particularly excited about the Titanic and knows every fact there is about the ship which sank in 1912, as well as the sister ships RMS Olympic and RMS Brittanic.  He also enjoys 4-wheeling with Grandma and Grandpa, likes to ride his bike and his electric scooter, loves to swim and ice cream is his favorite food.

Congratulations to Reilly for making this important decision.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Farewell Y'All, Elders Forsyth and Lovell

Elder Simeon Lovell left his Bloomington home with Ed and Linda Sappington on Wednesday, March 12 for the MTC in Provo in final preparation for missionary service in the Georgia Atlanta Mission.  The 21-year-old joined the church in Georgetown, Guyana, South America at age 14 along with his identical twin brother Selwin. In the United States only since mid-September and in St. George since Halloween “the twins” always knew the next great adventure in their lives was a mission.

His call to the American south was met with enthusiasm.  “I just want to serve the Lord.  I am happy for this opportunity to serve in Georgia although I am sorry Selwin and I won’t be in the MTC together.  Could be the MTC just wasn’t prepared for two Lovells at the same time.” 

Elder Cody Forsyth, third missionary son of Steve and Tina Forsyth's ten children, is thrilled with his call to serve in the Georgia Atlanta North mission and eagerly enters the MTC on Wednesday, March 19.  He had really been hoping to serve a foreign language mission, even if it was in the U.S., but when he read his call he felt the confirmation that this is exactly where he is supposed to go.  In researching his mission area online, he was pleased to learn his mission encompasses the southern part of the Appalachian Mountains ... which means TREES!  Cody has loved trees since he was a young boy, and he is looking forward to pedaling under that green canopy as he and his future companions bike every inch of the Appalachians looking for those golden contacts.  Mom says, "Cody has a great love for all people and is the least judgmental person I know.  The people of Georgia are just going to love him." 

Missionaries first arrived in Georgia in 1843 to preach and to campaign for Church President Joseph Smith's United States presidential bid. After Joseph Smith was martyred one year later, the Church's growth slowed . Activity resumed in the late 1870s when the Southern States Mission was headquartered in Rome, Georgia. One early convert to the Church donated land and built a chapel at Mormon Springs in Haralson County.

Missionaries left the state for a decade following the murder of one missionary in July 1879. By 1908, Church membership in Georgia was approximately 6,800 but in 1930 membership was 4,311. The first temple to be built in the Southern states was completed in 1983 in Atlanta, Georgia.

Today there are 80,500+ members, 151 wards and branches, 2 missions and 42 family history centers.  The church in Georgia increased its profile in 1992 when Latter-day Saints were very visible  with disaster relief after Hurricane Andrew destroyed homes and families in Albany.  In 1994, some 6000 Church volunteers helped homeowners recover from flooding in the area.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

New Mexico Welcomes Elder Dalan Brown

Elder Dalan Brown, son of Ronald and Vanda Lawson and brother to Elder Macklin Brown currently serving in the Australia Sydney South Mission, was "a little bummed" when he opened his call letter and realized he would not be serving a foreign mission.  But he knows this is where he is supposed to serve.  And it only took a minute for him to realize, although he is not specifically called to serve on reservations in the New Mexico Farmington Mission, he will likely have many opportunities to teach the gospel to the area's Native American people.  

The Church was first introduced in New Mexico in 1846 when a few members of the Mormon Battalion, on their way to fight in the Mexican-American War, crossed through the state. Missionary work in New Mexico began as early as the 1860s when two elders found success among the Zuni Indians on the Little Colorado River where they baptized more than 100 converts. After the turn of the century, many Church settlements in New Mexico absorbed refugees from the Latter-day Saint colonies in Mexico during the Mexican Revolution.

Today, there are 2 missions and more than 70,000 members in 138 congregations throughout the state.  In March 2000, the first temple in New Mexico was dedicated in Albuquerque.

Elder Brown - the 6th missionary to serve from the blended Lawson / Brown family - will enter the MTC on March 12.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Congrats to the Principal

B7’s own Bobby Twitty (aka Barbara Garrett), principal at Tonaquint Intermediate School, was recently named 2014 Administrator of the Year by the Utah Middle Level Association.  UMLA’s highest honor is presented annually to one administrator who best “addresses the unique needs of young adolescents by providing leadership and support to educators and families and promoting effective practices and programs which improve middle level education.” 

Principal Garrett began her career in education 33 years ago as an elementary school teacher in the Provo School District.  In 1995 she accepted an administrative position with the Washington County School District then opened Desert Hills Intermediate in 2000.   In 2007 she opened Tonaquint Intermediate - the school most recently named the top intermediate school in Utah and nationally recognized as one of nine Utah Schools to Watch.

Congratulations, Sister Twitty / Principal Garrett for this well deserved recognition from your peers. 

Sunday, March 2, 2014

New Bishopric Sustained

During ward conference on March 2, B7's Bishopric was seamlessly reorganized when Michael Black Bair was sustained as Bishop with Boyd Kanenwisher as First Counselor, and James Bertschi as Second Counselor.

According to Bloomington Stake President Hal Anderson, the process of finding a new bishopric is outlined in the fifth Article of Faith ("We believe a man must be called of God, by prophecy, and by the laying on of hands by those in authority to preach the gospel and administer in the ordinances thereof").  After a period of fasting and prayer when a revelatory witness is received, the name is submitted to the First Presidency and the Quorum of Twelve Apostles.  Then the priesthood leaders are sustained by ward members "as their shepherd" and finally the new bishopric is set apart by "those who are in authority."

Bishop John Goldhardt has provided more than five years of spiritual and temporal leadership to the membership of the Bloomington 7th Ward assisted by Mike Twitty who has served faithfully for five years as First Counselor and Roy Stephen who has worked alongside the bishop as Second Counselor for nearly three years.  This dynamic trio of priesthood leaders, called faithful, loyal and dedicated by President Anderson, unquestionably leave an amazing legacy of service to the Lord and His children within the ward boundaries ... and big shoes to fill.

What will the former bishop do with all his spare time now that he has some?  "I really need to clean the garage and sort through some closets ... and I'm sure Roma will have some ideas, too."

Evening of Excellence Shares Talents and Friendship

On Saturday, March 1 members of the ward gathered for an "Evening of Excellence," which served as the first session of ward conference since the traditional ward temple session was not possible because the temple was closed for cleaning.  The event brought ward members together to celebrate with food, friendship and talent.

A delicious pot luck dinner kicked off the Sabbath day observance of Fast Sunday.  Salads, main dishes and desserts were plentiful and very tasty!

Displays lined the outer walls of the Bloomington Stake Center cultural hall and featured a wide array to talents.  Ed Sappington brought his photography, Vicki Dove and Helen Baltazar shared their quilt projects. Paul Walbom showed off his beautiful wood work.  Betty Kingsbury, Margo Freeman and Jayne Creed had their beautiful knitted or crocheted sweaters and baby caps on display.  Aleia Anderson showed her creative clay critters.  Dick Graff had his amazing life history on display and Ron Lawson  had everyone in awe of his amazing oil paintings!

Dori Wilkerson and Sophie Ford emceed the evening's entertainment featuring the musical and dance talents of ward members.  Caroline Smith performed a modern tap dance, Patrick Swansborough sang and played the guitar, Elizabeth Larson signed the beautiful words to the hymn "Come Unto Christ".  Boyd and Bridger Kanenwisher sang a duet of two songs and Pat and Lauretta Swansborough showed off their musical talents with some lovely country tunes.

It was a delightful evening and a sweet way to start off our ward conference weekend.  Thanks to all who participated in any way.