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Eagles in Action

This month’s “Eagles in Action” include 13-year-old David Berndt of the Fresno Third Ward, Fresno California East Stake. Upon graduation from Primary, David had earned his Star rank in Scouting and 16 merit badges. Very quickly he earned his Eagle and has since earned enough badges for his bronze palm. He is a patrol leader in his troop, a priesthood organist, and is saving money from a paper route for his mission fund.

Seven members of the Rock Creek Ward, Washington D.C. Stake, received their Eagle Scout awards in the same court of honor last spring. Three months prior to the combined court of honor, three Scouts had completed the Eagle requirements but chose to wait until all seven could receive the award at the same time. Service projects undertaken by the Scouts included installing low coatracks for children at the stake center, preparing a slide-cassette presentation for local libraries concerning the installation and maintenance of smoke alarms, constructing step stools for children, placing hymnbook holders in the chapel pews, repainting lines in a large parking lot, and constructing an outdoor hot-water heater. The Scouts included Dirk Brinkerhoof, Richard Burnett, James Evans, Robert Garbrick, Richard Garbrick, Marc LeBlanc, and Brett Skidmore.

An innovative program in the Sunnyvale Second Ward, Los Altos California Stake, is helping Scouts 14 years of age and older to earn Eagle awards. The “Eagle Patrol” was established last year for young men who had turned 14 without attaining their Eagle ranks but who still had the desire to do so. The program was designed so that it did not interfere with regular Mutual activities and was completely administered by the youth leaders. Those who earned their awards during the first year of the program were Brian Burrows, Chris Oliver, Bill Murri, and James and Bruce Morrison.

In the Swim of Things

No one can accuse Corey Killpack of the Spencer Third Ward, Magna Utah East Stake, of being in over his head when it comes to swimming. At last year’s state high school swim meet, Corey received first place awards in the individual medley (50 yards of each of four strokes), the 100-yard butterfly, and was a member of the freestyle relay team that also placed first. Later that spring he finished 14th in the 200-yard butterfly at national competition in Austin, Texas. Although he usually spent four hours a day in practice (beginning at 4:45 A.M.), Corey also served as seminary president at Cyprus High School in Magna, and developed his skills in photography, tennis, and skiing.

Following a summer spent training in California, Corey and his teammates sent five copies of the Book of Mormon to people they met during their stay there. These same teammates were among those Corey swam with on the Cyprus High swim team, which placed first at the state meet. Of that successful group, Corey says, “Our unity as a team was largely dependent upon our similar motives and drives to serve the Lord.” Corey currently attends Brigham Young University and is preparing to serve a mission soon.

Breaking the Ice in Kitami, Japan

“I know it’s below freezing, but how much below?” asked Elder Bowes, drawing his knitted scarf a little tighter around his neck. Winters weren’t like this in North Carolina.

“Are you sure you want to know?” asked his companion with a grin.

Elder Bowes smiled with as much enthusiasm as a half-frozen missionary can, and Elder Bessho whispered, “It’s …” and made his thumb and forefinger into a zero.

It was cold in Kitami, but the desire of the four missionaries to introduce the Japanese people to a beautiful gospel principle was greater than their desire to escape from the chilling temperatures. With electric ice cutters and hand-carving tools, they followed the carefully drawn plans of Elder Bowes (who had had drafting experience) and built a replica of the Washington Temple out of solid ice. Finishing touches included installing a light within the structure and erecting a sign containing information about the eternal family unit and the purpose of temples.

When the construction was completed, it was displayed in the three-day Ice Festival in Kitami, an event attended by 55,000 people last February. Afterward, the Ice Festival Committee requested the drawings of the temple replica and plan to make it again on a much larger scale. (The original was carved from blocks of ice 3 1/2-by-2 1/2-by-1 feet.) In addition, the elders (Chris Johnson and Jonathan Morrell from Utah, Neal Bowes from North Carolina, and Mamoru Bessho from Nagoya, Japan) had the opportunity of explaining the display on television and radio and in two local newspapers.

[Cindy Mathie]

Reading for a Special Reason

Sometimes those who have successfully faced and fought handicaps of their own are the most willing to help when others are in need. Kenneth Scott Robertson, a deacon from the Bennion Tenth Ward, Bennion Utah West Stake, is a good example of this. Kenneth has cerebral palsy, a disease affecting muscles and body coordination, and was advised that he would never walk. He recently overcame that prognosis, however, and walked away from his wheelchair. Soon after, he went door-to-door and secured pledges of ten cents to one dollar for each book he would read during the coming four-week period. This was in conjunction with the Multiple Sclerosis Read-A-Thon. Kenneth read 60 books and was able to raise $318 for the multiple sclerosis research efforts.

The young deacon comes from a family of nine children and participates each year in the Special Olympics and also in the Scouting program.

1978 New Era Index, a Time Saver

You remember an article on different ways of keeping diaries and would like to read it again for some new ideas, only you’ve forgotten which issue it’s in.

Or maybe you’re the new assistant coach for your ward’s basketball team and recall a story in one of the New Eras that detailed skill tests that would be good to use in practice sessions. You’d like to use some of them with your team this year.

And then there was the true story about the 18-year-old Indian boy who organized wheelchair races and hootenannies and shared the gospel with other patients while confined to a hospital. You remember it was called “Young Courage” and you think it was printed last spring—but maybe it was really last fall?

All those articles were published in the New Era sometime last year; you know that. But exactly which month? Eagerly reaching for your 1978 index you look up diary, basketball, and “Young Courage” and find just the entries you need. 1978 indexes are now available (25¢ each), with articles listed according to subject, title, author, and department. Also available are hard-back binders ($4.00 each) to hold one year’s supply of New Eras. And if you’re missing any back issues, many of these are available for 40 cents. Indexes and binders may be purchased from Magazine Subscriptions, 50 East North Temple, Salt Lake City, Utah 84150.

Fighting Fire with Service Projects

“I came home from a school concert and my house was on fire,” said a Laurel from Dingle, Idaho.

“The dogs barking woke us, and the house was full of smoke,” said another Dingle resident.

And still another, “When I went into the kitchen, flames were shooting out of the wall plug.”

The sight of flames devouring the homes of their neighbors became an all-too-familiar sight to the 200 residents of this southeastern Idaho community last winter. Despite the efforts of the volunteer fire department from the nearby town of Montpelier, three homes in Dingle burned to the ground within a few months.

The town members of Dingle were there with clothing, blankets, and food to help the victims, and right in the middle were the Young Women from the Dingle Ward, Montpelier Idaho Stake. Under the leadership of the Laurels, the girls tied a quilt for one family, held a surprise kitchen shower for another family, and gave the proceeds from a baked food sale to the third family. They also raised money to send to a former Dingle resident whose home burned in Utah.

In addition, they were always ready to help with any cleaning up and clearing out they were asked to do.

“You realize how much you need one another at a time like this,” softly spoke one of the fire victims. “Everybody’s been so good to us; I’ve decided that from now on I’m going to sacrifice more of my time and do more things for other people.”

The Young Women in Dingle have discovered the feelings of fulfillment that can come from doing just that. And while they hope they won’t have occasion to help in the same way again, they’ll be there if needed.

New Missionaries Now Attend Missionary Training Center

Missionaries assigned to English-speaking parts of the world no longer attend five days of orientation and preparation at the Salt Lake Missionary Home. Instead, they spend four weeks at the missionary training facility in Provo, Utah. Previously called the Language Training Mission, as of October 26, 1978, it became the Missionary Training Center.

The Salt Lake facility was training 200 to 250 missionaries each week. When it was decided to increase the orientation and preparation period to a month, a larger center became necessary.

Moses, Man of Miracles by Mark E. Petersen Deseret Book Company $4.95, pp. 198

The great prophet Moses and his accomplishments in leading the children of Israel out of Egyptian bondage are heralded to this day. But we live in an age of doubt, a time in which many people try to explain away the things of God, claiming miracles are not divine, but rather quirks of nature. These same people deny the Lord’s role in Moses’ affairs and often attribute scriptural accounts to folklore.

In Moses, Man of Miracles, Elder Mark E. Petersen of the Council of the Twelve refutes their claims, painting a solid portrait of the man who received the Ten Commandments from the Lord, wrote Genesis and other books of the Bible, and also played an important role in the latter-day restoration of the gospel. To do so, Elder Petersen repeatedly cites scripture references, biblical scholars, and scientific researchers.

Chapters progress logically from a definition of the problem of deciphering myth from fact, to a setting of the historical stage (including Moses’ geographical and sociological background and genealogy), to a listing of his accomplishments and a review of his relationship with Jehovah. Included are passages discussing the plagues of Egypt and how they were designed to expose false idolatry, Moses’ dealings with Joseph Smith, and other topics that review the life of the man who led a great nation to a promised land.

Elder Petersen lends his insight and perspective throughout the account, helping the gospel student understand and order the facts. He then forges these facts together into one logical conclusion: that Moses was a reality, and that accounts of him in both modern and ancient scripture are true.

[photo] Sunnyvale Second Ward “Eagle Patrol”

[photo] Rock Creek Ward Eagle Scouts

[photo] David Berndt

[photo] When her father was transferred from Oregon to Japan with the Air Force, Cindy Mathie’s life underwent some changes. Although she had been attending all her meetings, including seminary and Mutual, when her family moved, she became the only active girl in the Young Women organization of the Misawa Air Force Base Branch, where her father is the branch president. She has continued with her seminary studies and has finished reading the Book of Mormon. In addition, Cindy, age 15, has had many opportunities to serve as an example to her nonmember friends. She won second place in a school talent contest by singing “Destiny” from her seminary materials and accompanying herself on the piano. She also was chosen homecoming queen at the Robert D. Edgren High School last year.