Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The Bush District Youth Temple Trip

This was and will be the only Bush District Youth Temple trip in the history of the church for two reasons. Number 1, this was the first time the youth from the bush have been organized in such a way to be able to travel to the temple as a group, and number 2, the Bush District was dissolved by the Church on Sunday, February 21st, 2010. The three Anchorage stake have now changed boundaries to include the seven bush branches. Our stake has Bethel, Nome and Kotzebue. And it's a wonderful change for them and for us. My sweetheart worked for about six months to bring this little trip to pass and it was worth every minute of it. Members of the stake sponsored the youth by donating Alaska airlines flyer miles to get them into Anchorage and some very special members of our ward housed and fed them. I was blessed with 9 "stripling warriors" for the weekend.

Fourteen youth from four of those branches participated in two temple sessions, one on Friday evening and another on Saturday afternoon. Some had never been to the temple and one youth hadn't been out of Bethel for four years. Three recently moved to the bush from Utah due to changes in family situations and the economy.
It was difficult to get good pictures because there were so many people trying to take pictures. Representatives from the temple presidency, the mission presidency, the former bush district presidency and youth leaders from all three stakes were on hand to welcome and chat with the youth. These youth are from Bethel.

These kids represent the Bush Branch from three different locations, Aluknuk, Clarks Point, and one I can't remember, pronounce or spell, but it starts with an "S". Dillingham.

Dutch Harbor. She was a fun girl. We had a blast at neon bowling and she holds the group record for most $$ spent on clothes at the mall!!
The cousins from Bethel. #3 was my right hand man! He helped me pick out baby clothes in the mall, chaperoned me to the restroom, made sure the car doors were locked, and kept us all in stitches most of the time.
In addition to the temple the youth enjoyed some shopping, a regional church dance, neon bowling, long, hot showers (water is very expensive in the bush), Costco pizza, breakfast at Denny's (their choice , not mine!), about 100 chocolate chip cookies, too many arcade games, playing 10,000, Sunday church meetings in Eagle River and a stake youth fireside. We had some wonderful times that I will never forget. I hope they don't either.


deerhollow said...

What a great experience for everyone involved! I bet those loved every minute of it! DIck ROCKS!
I miss AK - and YOU!

deerhollow said...

those kids

Valli said...

Wow, they will remember that their whole lives! What a blessing for everyone involved.