Sunday, November 24, 2013

Welcome, Bairs

The family of Michael and Lori Bair include three beautiful daughters – Brianna Teddie Bair, a single, 21-year-old college student at BYU-Idaho; Aspen Honey Bair, a 15-year-old who loves sports, particularly volleyball and basketball; and, Cara Cinnamon Bair, a lively and sociable 13-year-old who also loves sports.  Dakota Black Bair, the only son, is currently serving the Lord in the Oregon Portland Spanish-speaking Mission.  

The Bair’s naming tradition is simple starting with Black Bair.  Michael’s mother’s maiden name was Black before she met his father (Michael says he got his father’s build and his mother’s tender heart).  Michael served the Lord for two years in the California Oakland Mission, then attended BYU where he played football (his claim to fame is that he showered with Steve Young).  He met and married Lori in his junior year (she says she dated all of his roommates before attracting her husband’s attention).    After graduation, he accepted a job teaching health and drivers education at Dixie High School where he has worked since 1992.  Currently he is the Vice Principal and Athletic Director.

Lori was born on a Navajo reservation.  The Catholic nuns at the hospital knew her family was LDS, so baptized her as a newborn.  "I guess they wanted to save my soul, so I’m double covered!” she laughs.  She attended BYU-Idaho when it was still Ricks College (“it will always be Ricks to me”), then studied two months at the MTC before serving 10 months of her mission for the deaf in the Florida Tallahassee Mission and another 6 months in the California Anaheim Mission.  After her mission, she worked for ten years as an interpreter but now works part time at SkyWest.  The first counselor in the B7 Young Women’s Program says she has been in YW “forever” while Michael has served as Gospel Doctrine teacher, High Priest Group Leader and a ward clerk.  Currently he is the priest quorum advisor.

Welcome to the ward, Bairs … one and all! 

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Hello and Farewell, Elders

Elder Zachary Miller, grandson of Charles and Diane Miller, is newly home from "the most amazing experience of my life" as a full-time missionary in the Nicaragua Managua South Mission.

The first missionaries came to Nicaragua in 1953, but in 1978 a civil war broke out forcing foreigners to leave the country.  In 1980 the political climate had cooled and work was resumed.  In October, 1989 when the Nicaragua Managua Mission was created, membership had grown to approximately 3,500.  In less than two years, membership increased to 8,000 and five years later membership had doubled. In July 2010 a second mission was created to meet the growing demand for the gospel message.  Today there are more than 67,000 members and two missions – Nicaragua Managua North and Nicaragua Managua South - in this Central American country.

Zachary, a student at the University of Utah prior to his mission, is giving some thought to transferring to BYU now that he is home.  Regardless of which school he attends he will need to choose a major.  He thinks there is the possibility of law school in his future but his first priority, now that he has put away his black name badge, is to find a job.  

Jared Ford enters the MTC in Provo this week in final preparation for two years of fulltime service in the Montana Billings Mission.  The oldest son of Scott and Sophie and a 2012 graduate of Tuacahn High School, states he would have enjoyed the opportunity to learn a language but is happy to serve the Lord and His children in Montana.  He is also quick to point out he already has lots of warm clothing based on the recommendation of numerous people here in sunny St. George who have lived in Big Sky Country.
The first few members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints found their way to Montana during the gold rush of the 1860’s where they traded with the Flathead Indians and eventually settled in the area. Others followed the Montana Trail from the Church's Fort Lemhi settlement on the Salmon River.  The gold discovery, followed by the completion of the overland railway in 1869, attracted others until in 1896 the Montana Mission was established.  In October 1897, Church leaders in Montana received the promise of religious freedom from then-Governor John E. Rickards.  The Church’s first official meeting was held in Anaconda with 75 in attendance.  

Today, the Church in Montana - with an overall population of just over a million people - has nearly 48,000 members, 120 congregations, one mission and the Billings Montana Temple, which was dedicated in 1999.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Happy Halloween, B7!

Members of all ages enjoyed another fun Trunk or Treat event in the church parking lot on Halloween, Thursday, October 31.  Hosted by the Primary, the activity has become a favorite for the young but is also eagerly anticipated by the young-at-heart, who … no matter their stage in life, dress up to hand out their Halloween goodies and seem to get as much fun out of it as all the little ghouls and boys who go from trunk to trunk for their treats.  Thanks, too, to the Young Women who organized the Chili Cookoff to provide a tasty hot meal on a cool fall evening.  Winners of the completion – selected from more than a dozen entries – are:

·         *  Witches Spellbinding Brew (Most creative):  Tina Forsyth

·         *  Ghostly Goulash (Best non-red chili):  Swansborough Family

·         *  Howling Hot (Hottest Chili):  Gary Anderson

·         *  Mummy's Choice  (Most Kid Friendly):  Anne Bertschi

·         *  Halloween's Finest  (Best Overall Chili):  Philo Close

Thanks to everyone who participated.  It was a fun evening!