GRAND PRIZE 25th DAY Tour WINNER!

Posted by on Dec 24, 2011 in Christmas of Past 2011 | 0 comments

On our Final Day of Christmas Past, we’ve enjoyed the thoughts of Christmas you have shared. Thank you for going on a journey through Christmas Past with us. We hope you have enjoyed it and been reminded that – “The magic of Christmas is not in the presents but in His Presence”. Congrats to KELI EMERSON, our Grand Prize Missouri to Nauvoo to Winter Quarters Tour drawing winner!!! Be sure you contact our office immediately 801-272-5601 to redeem your Missouri to Nauvoo to Winter Quarters tour...

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ANSWER and WINNER 24th Day Christmas Past

Posted by on Dec 23, 2011 in Christmas of Past 2011 | 0 comments

On the 24th Day of Christmas Past, a Savior’s hand he always would lend; Proving that Spencer W. Kimball thought Jesus as his very best friend. Special story still available on yesterday’s 24th Day Question and Story post. Congrats to 24th Day drawing winner, Liz Carlston, who won an olive wood figurine from Jerusalem depicting the nativity! You have until 7:00 pm MST today to participate in the 25th Day of Christmas Past.  Be sure to check back soon after that to see who has won our GRAND PRIZE!  If you win, be sure you contact our office immediately 801-272-5601 to redeem your Missouri to Nauvoo to Winter Quarters tour...

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QUESTION and STORY 25th Last Day Christmas Past

Posted by on Dec 23, 2011 in Christmas of Past 2011 | 0 comments

On the 25th and last Day of Christmas Past, the question is to be: 25.  After reading Elder Holland’s insights on contemplating Christmas, what new thoughts do you have that you haven’t had before about that special night? “Part of the purpose for telling the story of Christmas is to remind us that Christmas doesn’t come from a store. Indeed, however delightful we feel about it, even as children, each year it means a little bit more. And no matter how many times we read the biblical account of that evening in Bethlehem, we always come away with a thought—or two—we haven’t had before. One impression which has persisted with me is that this is a story of intense poverty. I wonder if Luke did not have some special meaning when he wrote not “there was no room in the inn” but specifically that “there was no room for them in the inn” (Luke 2:7; emphasis added). We cannot be certain, but it is my guess that money could buy influence in those days as well as in our own. I think if Joseph and Mary had been people of importance or wealth, they would have found lodging even at that busy time of year. We cannot be certain what the historian intended, but we do know these two were desperately poor. At the purification offering which the parents made after the child’s birth, a turtledove was substituted for the required lamb, a substitution the Lord had allowed in the law of Moses to ease the burden of the truly impoverished (see Lev. 12:8). As a father, I have thought often of Joseph—that strong, silent, almost unknown man who must have been more worthy than any other mortal man to be the guiding foster father of the living Son of God. It was Joseph selected from among all men who would teach Jesus to work. It was Joseph who taught him the books of the Law. It was Joseph who, in the seclusion of the shop, helped him begin to understand who he was and ultimately what he was to become. I compare my feelings of wanting the best for my wife and soon to be born child with what Joseph must have felt as he moved through the streets of a city not his own, with not a friend or kinsman in sight, nor anyone willing to extend a helping hand. In these very last and most painful hours of her “confinement,” Mary had ridden or walked approximately 160 kilometers from Nazareth in Galilee to Bethlehem in Judea. Surely Joseph must have wept at her silent courage. Now, alone and unnoticed, they had to descend from human company to a stable, a grotto full of animals, there to bring forth the Son of God. I wonder what emotions Joseph might have had as he cleared away the dung...

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QUESTION and STORY 24th Day Christmas Past

Posted by on Dec 22, 2011 in Christmas of Past 2011 | 1 comment

On the 24th Day of Christmas Past, the question is to be: 24.  How was Jesus Christ, Spencer W. Kimball’s best friend? How much do we show the Savior that he is our best friend?  Read these accounts about Pres. Kimball: An example of President Kimball’s discipleship occurred one Christmas Eve several years ago. He called and asked if I were busy. I quickly responded, “Not at all. What can I do for you, President Kimball?” He told me he needed a companion to go with him to the Primary Children’s Hospital to give a few blessings. It turned out that he had heard of several children from South America, as well as some American Indian children, who were in the hospital. We went from floor to floor giving blessings to all the Latins and Lamanites and many others too. I was deeply affected by the love of President Kimball and his tender friendship with each child. He was a friend to the sick—a friend to those far from home. He exemplified the tender, loving friendship that the Savior would give. It was easy to see how he could say, “The Savior is my best friend.” President Kimball qualifies as a friend of the Savior. When he was in the hospital ready to undergo open-heart surgery, he was being wheeled down the hall and into the operating room by a young orderly. The young man accidentally smashed his finger between the metal door frame and the metal frame of the bed on which lay the already sedated prophet. When this mishap occurred, the young man, in pain, used an unfortunate expression in which he took in vain the name of the Savior. The prophet stirred, opened his eyes, and gently rebuked the orderly, saying, “Young man, don’t say that; He’s my best friend!” Do you and I have a relationship with the Savior such that we would decry the misuse of His name? Does Jesus know that we feel about Him the way President Kimball feels about Him? When Spencer W. Kimball, was about fourteen Susa Gates spoke at their stake conference. He recalls: “She gave a rousing talk on the reading of the scriptures; … then she stopped … to ask … us, ‘How many of you have read the Bible through?’ “… My accusing heart said to me, ‘You, Spencer Kimball, you have never read that holy book. Why?’ I looked around me … to see if I was alone in my failure to read the sacred book. Of the thousand people, there were perhaps a half dozen who proudly raised their hands. … When the meeting closed, I … rushed home … gritting my teeth and saying to myself, ‘I will. I will.’” He went home, got a coal-oil lamp, and climbed the stairs to his attic room. “There,” he said, “I opened my Bible and...

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ANSWER and WINNER 23rd Day Christmas Past

Posted by on Dec 22, 2011 in Christmas of Past 2011 | 0 comments

On the 23rd Day of Christmas past, Heber J. Grant was cold. Because he rode on sleigh runners and later gave away his coat. Story still available on yesterday’s 23rd Day Question and Story post. Congrats to 23rd Day drawing winner, Laura Stephens, who won a set of olive wood Christmas tree ornaments made in...

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QUESTION and STORY 23rd Day Christmas Past

Posted by on Dec 21, 2011 in Christmas of Past 2011 | 2 comments

On the 23rd Day of Christmas Past, the question is to be: 23.  Heber J. Grant, during Christmas time, had two experiences being cold.  What were the reasons? Read the two accounts below: Heber shivered in his thin coat as the cold November wind whipped around him. All he really wanted for his birthday was a warm overcoat, but he knew that asking for one would upset his mother. He remembered how she had cried the Christmas before because she didn’t have enough money to buy him even a stick of candy. Nine days after Heber was born, his father had died and his mother had moved him from the fine house where he had been born to a small one where they lived for many years. The roof leaked and sometimes they went to bed early because there was no coal for heat. Sometimes they went to bed hungry, for the fried bread hadn’t been sufficient supper and there was no money for anything else. There were days and nights when Heber’s mother would sew and sew even though she was really too tired to finish a dress for a customer. Then Heber would go under the sewing machine and push the pedal up and down so that his mother’s tired legs might have a rest. As they worked together in the lamplight, she would tell him stories and they would plan together for the time they would have plenty of coal, food, and all the clothes one could wear. Neither of them dreamed that one day Heber J. Grant would be the seventh President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. November 22 dawned clear and cold. “Happy birthday, Heber,” called his mother as she handed him the most beautiful coat Heber had ever seen. It was made of material his mother had been sewing, and it fit him perfectly. He hugged it to himself and could hardly wait to go out in the cold day and feel its warmth about him. A few weeks later, around Christmas, as Heber was hurrying on an errand he saw a boy just his size who was crying with cold. The boy was wearing a thin sweater, and Heber shivered, even though he had on his new overcoat. As Heber hurried by, the crying boy looked at his coat with such longing that almost before he knew what he was doing, Heber had stopped, taken off the coat, and insisted that the boy wear it. That very afternoon his mother saw Heber wearing his old coat instead of the new one. “Heber,” she called, “what have you done with your lovely new overcoat?” For just a moment he wondered how he could tell her he had given it away. He wondered what she would say. He hoped she wouldn’t cry. “Oh, Mother,” he finally explained, “I saw a...

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