January 24, 2012

Eternity as a Family

This weekend was packed full of journal entry/blog fodder experiences, let us share some of them with you.

Saturday morning we attended the LDS Temple here in Manila with six other ward members that I had previously taught the ‘Temple Preparation’ classes to during Sunday school. It was a special experience to watch them grow over the 7 week course and see how they were preparing themselves to live as Heavenly Father would want them to live. Seeing them all in the Temple with bright, happy faces ready to learn was even more rewarding.

Two of the six were a married couple and they were able to have all six of their children, ages 16-6months, come into the temple too and they were sealed for eternity. I had to take a few deep breaths and blink rapidly because I could not help a tear falling in gratitude for the knowledge that we can be families forever. It was tender to watch this young family, all dressed in white, together holding hands as they were sealed. The three year old was especially excited to make sure that everyone was there and was holding each other’s hand.

Afterwards he came and sat on my lap and said, “Brother Dust, Maganda dito (it is beautiful here).”  And truly it was beautiful in so many ways-- Beautiful building, beautiful family and friends, and most of all a beautiful feeling of the Spirit. I am thankful I was able to join in. Then he noticed the large mirror on the wall and deserted me to jump up and down waving at himself with excitement.

Lady Hiva and I rushed home, ate something then were off to the Chapel. My calling at church is to be over all the young men from 5 different congregations and we were having an activity for them. I again was touched to see these young men and how they too are striving to live gospel principles and values when so many things they see everyday suggest living otherwise may be more fun.

I admire their strength to be examples, to stand up for what is right at all times. We played a short game of trivia/chutes and ladders that Lady Hiva and I made up. They had to answer questions to move forward and if they landed on a space where they had to draw they moved forward or backwards depending on the slip they drew. (hopefully they learned something from the trivia questions in the process)

Sunday Lady Hiva and I were able to go out and visit people in the Pasay area. It was fun to come home and compare stories with each other about our day. We completely enjoyed really seeing how life in the Philippines (well the Manila part of it anyway) really is.

It was a packed weekend, but so many memories and special moments.


  1. Wonderful story! Thank you for sharing the joyful day and great photos with us. Congratulations on being featured today in the Deseret News - MoSop

  2. Wonderful to see you all sealed and that you had such a fine weekend together in the temple! I love the pictures of your smiling faces!