Our Missionary Friends

By Karla Haynie

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    Wade’s Miracle

    Before Wade Holmstead passed away I had the opportunity of being his Primary president. All his life he had serious health problems, but he also had an insight and understanding that few eleven-year-olds have.

    When I interviewed Wade for Primary graduation, he was well prepared and anxious to become a deacon and a Scout. Then we spoke of missionary work and his future plans. Some of his neighbors were inactive and the children did not attend Primary. I asked Wade if he would be a missionary and try to get these children to attend Primary. He agreed.

    The next week, Primary was about to begin when Wade and these children entered the chapel. I was stunned! What a miracle. Later I asked him, “How did you ever get the children to come to Primary?”

    Wade looked at me with wonder and answered quietly, “It wasn’t hard at all, Sister Haynie. I just reminded them. All they needed was to be reminded.”

    The Work of God

    When my brother Jeff was called on a mission to Houston, Texas, we were all excited. It was hard to think that we wouldn’t see him for two years, but we had a strong feeling that Jeff would be safe and do well on his mission.

    Time passed quickly and soon we went with him to President Pulton’s office where he received a blessing. The Spirit was truly there.

    We are very happy now even though our brother is away from us. I know that this is the true Church and that Joseph Smith is a Prophet of God. If Jeff is reading this I want him to know I love him. I hope boys and girls can plan and prepare for a mission. It truly is the work of God.

    Our Lives Changed

    After I had been living in Fairfield, Ohio, for about a year, the Nielson family moved into our neighborhood. It wasn’t long until Brett Nielson and I became best friends. One day he asked me to go to his church for a dinner. My parents said it was OK.

    When we arrived at the Church, he showed me around the building. Later we saw a movie called Meet the Mormons, and he asked if I’d like to join the Mormon Church. I said I might, and when I got home I told my mom that I wanted to be a Mormon when I grew up.

    My mom thought she’d better see what her son was getting into. So she went to see Sister Nielson, and asked her if she had any books about the Mormons. Sister Nielson gave Mom some books and pamphlets to read.

    Pretty soon the missionaries gave us the discussions and we were baptized. Dad was baptized a year later and this year we were sealed together as a family for time and all eternity.

    Even though we have since moved to St. Clairsville, Ohio, Brett and I are just like brothers. We plan to go to Brigham Young University together. I know that when you bring the gospel to someone, you grow closer to that person.

    Good Neighbor

    Soon I’ll be celebrating the first anniversary of my baptism, thanks to the efforts of my neighbor Diane Novak who is ten.

    Diane invited me to Primary at the Caribou Branch of the Church in the Houlton-Maine District of the Canada-Halifax Mission. Later I met with the missionaries and was baptized by Diane’s father in the swimming pool at Loring Air Force Base. Now I go to Mutual and take my nonmember brother and one of his friends with me.

    Sealed in the Temple

    I liked the story in the April 1977 Friend called “A Better Way,” and I would like to tell about the missionary experience our family had.

    When I was eight years old, we moved to Fountain Valley, California. Since we had some friends who were Mormons, Mom and Dad wanted to learn about the gospel. So when the missionaries knocked on our door, Mom asked them to come back that night when Dad was home. They did. The feeling was so good that evening that we asked the missionaries to return.

    Later on Mom, Dad, and I were baptized, and a few weeks later my little sisters were blessed. Then my older sister was baptized. A year later my dad died of cancer. About a year after his death our family was sealed together in the temple.

    I am really thankful that we have the gospel in our home.

    Teaching My Teacher

    One day my piano teacher saw me talking to the Latter-day Saint missionaries. After my lesson was over, she offered me a drink of lemonade, and then she asked me how I knew the elders. I told her I was a Mormon.

    She said that the elders had knocked on her door a while ago, but she hadn’t let them in. She asked if we believed in Jesus. I told her we did and recited the first Article of Faith. I also told her about Joseph Smith in the sacred grove and about how he became the first prophet of the Church.

    She was really interested and asked me a lot of questions. Since that day we have talked about the Church at almost every piano lesson. When I told her about the Word of Wisdom, she said she thought it was a good rule and that it would keep our bodies healthy.

    It makes me feel good to tell my piano teacher about the gospel. She is very nice and I hope someday she will become a member of the Church.