I can't believe that we are on the down side of summer vacation. It's going much too quickly, but that's indicative that we are much too busy! We've had so much happening in our lives, summer's been a blur.
I should share that last night/yesterday was a very special day for our family. Yesterday, Doug was ordained as a High Priest. He has always joked that he wanted to die being the oldest Elder in the church, but that will no longer be possible. Doug has always enjoyed being in the Elders Quorum and being a part of the group of great men he's worked and served with, especially in our last ward in our old home. However, all good things must come to an end... so that new good things can begin. And begin they will.
Doug has been called to serve as a counselor in the Bishopric of a Young Singles Adult ward. This calling came a quite a shock to us last week. It's taken a week of "adjusting" and learning what it will mean for our family. Doug will be serving in a YSA ward, which means that he will be attending the ward, filled with college age students only. No marrieds, no families, all between the ages of 18-28. He will be counselor to an amazing man, who we are certain is also a wonderful Bishop, as he is awesome at everything he does. The bishop is and has been one of Doug's life heroes since the day they met. It will be a wonderful and growing experience for Doug and our family.
What this means for our family... I will attend our home ward with the kids for Sacrament Meeting and then I will slip out quietly for the remainder of the block in Doug's ward. We will be hosting one monthly family home evening in our home, feeding 1/4 of the YSA ward on that night, just for fun. (Sounds fun to me!) We've been told that the students will all frequent our home on a regular basis. Doug will be in meetings/activities three or four nights a week for the duration. Our family will be encouraged to attend the activities and be involved with the students, as much as possible. It will be time-consuming and tiring, but uplifting and rewarding. We are very much looking forward to it.
It will mean that our involvement in our own home ward will be less or that I will be doing double-time to be involved in both wards, which right now, I hope to be able to do. We've been instructed that family comes first in all things, so we'll do our best to keep things as normal as possible for the kids and also to serve our very best wherever we are needed in both wards.
This calling came as a complete shocker to us both! We were on our way to float the Oneida Narrows last week, when a call came for us to meet with a Stake President who was not our Stake President. We went on Sunday night to meet with a man that we'd never met or heard of before. He was kind and humorous and talkative. He was so very lavish with praise for both Doug and I, from things that he'd been told by others about the both of us. Over -the-top, generous with praise. To the point that it was extremely humbling and made us both ask, "Are we really up for this?" But, of course, Doug said yes to the call to serve. We will do our best to live up to their expectations. We are so excited for this new adventure!
There was also the question of who should perform the ordination. It has to be done by a High Priest. Doug would have loved to have had his father do this, which is traditionally the way it happens, but his father passed away when he was seventeen. Buddy could have done it and Doug would have loved that, but they could not make it up from Arizona. His uncles, who ordained him an Elder, have all passed away. He has cousins who he could have asked, but didn't want them to have to travel. He has two brothers, but then he'd have had to decide which brother. So, he asked our dear friend, Jim, who is like a brother to Doug, to perform the ordinance. Jim is currently serving as a YSA Bishop in another ward and stake. Jim's blessing was touching and kind, with counsel and wisdom for Doug to use as he serves.
Last night, we gathered in our living room and Doug was ordained by Jim, along with our current Bishop, a Stake Representative, his brother Danny and Mom's new husband Norm.It was a beautiful experience. I'd prepared refreshments for afterward and we all sat in the den, munching and visiting until almost eleven. Doug had to get up at 3:53, so it's going a long day for him at work, followed by our first meeting with the YSA Bishop. We, and the kids, enjoyed visiting with Jim and Kristy, Doug's Mom and Norm, his brother Danny, our Bishop and his wife. Liza joined us on FaceTime as everyone arrived and she and Buddy were able to listen in to the ordination. It was hard for us not to have her here in the flesh, but we were grateful for her to participate by technology. It was such a lovely evening.
We are excited, humbled, nervous, anxious, looking forward to this new chapter in our lives. Every day brings something new! Love it! Life is good!