“The safest road to Hell is the gradual one—the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts.”
—C. S. Lewis
Tops in Tennis
South of the Great Salt Lake, nestled in a broad valley formed by the Oquirrh and Stansbury Mountains, Grantsville, Utah, is a typical small town except for one thing. Almost everybody plays tennis or cheers for tennis players. Grantsville High School’s tennis teams have dominated state 2A competition for years.
Christine Cole, 18, typifies Grantsville’s success on the courts. Chris is only the ninth female player in the United States to win four first-place high school tennis titles.
In addition to high school crowns, Chris has won numerous county and privately sponsored meets. She also placed second in the Anaconda Men’s Singles Tournament, where she was entered by mistake but played anyway. She received Prep of the Week awards from two newspapers. Not surprisingly, she was chosen team captain in 1982 and received her school’s most valuable player trophy three years in a row. That’s not bad for someone who’s four feet, eleven inches tall.
But that’s not all. Chris won in state high school drama competition and was head flag carrier for the school band, secretary of the drill team, and an editor for the school paper. Chris was also an honor student and won a teaching scholarship. She made the community all-star softball team and performed so well on a work-study program at Tooele Army Depot that she was hired as a summer employee.
Until she left for college, Chris was a member of the Grantsville 4th Ward, Grantsville Utah West Stake, where she served as assistant librarian and Laurel president. Her brother Garry, 12, a deacon, is also a tennis player and a baseball all-star.
The Hurst Texas Stake held its first annual Youth Awards Banquet. All stake youth ages 12 to 18 were invited to attend.
The banquet was a formal affair with the tables set in crystal and china with fresh flowers. The purpose of the evening was to recognize the achievements of the youth during the past year. Parents were contacted and asked to list the accomplishments of their children. The information was compiled onto personalized award certificates.
Those who attended enjoyed hearing of the talents and achievements made by each of the stake’s young people. Following the dinner, those 14 and older were invited to stay for a dance.
The Hurst Texas Stake plans to make this a yearly event.
The Young Women in the Roy First Ward, Roy Utah West Stake, wanted to do a special service project for their ward. They had an opportunity to clean an apartment complex for a local builder and spent four full Saturdays working on the project. They also made and sold homemade lollipops to earn money.
On completion of their projects, they presented a check to the bishop to be used for the ward budget. It was a surprise to both the bishop and the ward members because the girls had kept their plans a secret.
Hall of Famer
Beth Rains graduated with distinction from Pascagoula High School in Mississippi. She was also selected to be a member of the school’s Hall of Fame. Beth has won a city-wide talent show, has been a cheerleader, and was the choreographer for the school’s musical. She is a member of the Pascagoula Ward, Mobile Alabama Stake.
Even As I Am by Neal A. Maxwell (Deseret Book $6.95)
Jesus said, “What manner of men ought ye to be? Verily I say unto you, even as I am.” Since Elder Maxwell has been called as a special witness for Christ, he turns his attention to examining the attributes of the Savior that can lead us to perfection. As Elder Maxwell says, “The only real veneration of Jesus is emulation of Him.”
Four seniors from the North Little Rock Ward, Little Rock Arkansas Stake, had a very successful year. They were active in school, and all completed and received their Young Womanhood Recognition.
Lori Wiggins, Shelly Anderson, Laura Johnson, and Jacque Adcock prepared for their awards through class projects such as learning to can, decorating cakes, making Mother’s Day plaques, fellowshipping inactive members, and other service projects. They also achieved several individual goals as well as the class goals.
Lori was an officer of the school drill team and member of the National Honor Society. Laura was stake seminary secretary and vice-president of her senior class in school. Jacque was president of the ward seminary and president of her senior class. She was also co-captain of the cheerleading squad. Shelly was active in a clown troupe and in the costuming crew during school plays. She also participated in community theater.
To conclude the year, the girls and their adviser made a quilt, which was presented by the class to the ward.
Do you get sweaty palms, shaky knees, and cotton mouth when it’s your turn to speak in church? If so, don’t give up hope; help is available.
The new communications manual from the General Activities Committee is out and gives tips on topics like organizing your talk, controlling your anxiety, and using a microphone. (No, you don’t blow into it to see if it’s on. Try snapping your fingers in front of it or simply speaking into it.)
Also included in the manual are tips on making posters, saving money on printing, producing newsletters, and creative ways to announce fun events. There are even guidelines for ward and stake speech competitions. The Communications Manual (PBAC0067) is available for $.40 from the Salt Lake City Distribution Center, 1999 West 1700 South, Salt Lake City, Utah 84104.
Fiji Youth Conference
During the spring, when much of the Northern Hemisphere is recovering from the grips of winter, the Southern Hemisphere, particularly the South Pacific, is soaking up the warm rays of the sun.
That’s when the youth in the Fiji Suva District retreat to their own secluded, tropical island for three glorious days in search of their destiny.
As the chartered boat, the Noolooloo, departed from the jetty, 57 youth and 16 leaders, one live pig (Friday’s dinner), and assorted camping gear were about to make history in the third annual youth conference. The sea cruise to Nukulau Island was only the beginning of a beautiful experience.
“Determine Your Destiny” was the theme for the conference. The theme song, “Morning of Your Life,” was taken from the October 1980 New Era. It was the objective of each youth to plan and set goals for his or her immediate future and distant tomorrows. “We are charting our own destiny,” said Elizabeth from Suva Sixth Branch, “rather than allowing fate or outside circumstances to dictate to us.”
Once camp was established, the Young Men president called a general assembly. Journals were handed out to each youth with instructions that while in search of their destiny, the recording of thoughts and goals would greatly increase the chances of successfully accomplishing those goals. One girl recorded in her journal, “I never thought three days could make the difference for me in sorting out my course toward my destiny.”
The following three days were filled with activities and seminars. Seminars were conducted in first aid, lifesaving and swimming, pioneering, tie-dyeing, and goal setting.
“Campfire is burning, campfire is burning,” was signal enough from the campfire mistress, Cheryl Bukarau, for all to gather on the beach for mimes, skits, singing, and stories. The charismatic mood of the South Pacific seemed to mesmerize everyone. The reflection of the tall palm trees, silhouetted by the fire, cast interesting shadows on the beach. The mood was amplified by the lapping of the waves on the shore as if it were the sound of Fijian drums in the distance.
The highlight of the conference was when the mission president, Wilford E. Smith, ferried across from the mainland to be guest of honor for dinner and to deliver the keynote address. President Smith encouraged all to consult with the Lord in prayer, refer to patriarchal blessings, and listen to the prophet’s counsel.
Saturday morning dawned clear and crisp as the fasting youth gathered for separate Young Men and Young Women meetings followed by a joint testimony meeting, where the testimonies of youth and leaders brought the youth conference to another spiritual high.
It was with regret that camp was broken. During the final moments a special ceremony, unseen by most, was held at the base of a large tree, where a time capsule was buried. The capsule held the history of the conference and the written goals of 57 youth and 16 leaders. One year later, the capsule will be opened for those who return to the next youth conference to evaluate how well they have shaped their own destiny.
Prepared for Safety
Springtime comes in an unusual manner to the Columbia Basin in the Pacific Northwest. While the skiers are still enjoying late skiing in the Blue and Cascade Mountains, the Venturers of Explorer Post 9201 return their snowshoes to storage, pack away their cherished memories of snow camping and ice caves, and prepare for the white water adventures of their summer program.
The common denominator of this post’s year-round program is safety. The program begins with a lecture on hypothermia and a film on canoe safety. Attendance is compulsory if one is to participate in the later canoe activities. Anyone who plans to continue in the actual canoe phases of the program attends an early-morning training session at an indoor local pool. For more than two hours, each aspiring white water canoeist takes his turn and physically participates in dumping a canoe, reboarding, and helping as part of a rescue crew to pick up “survivors” floating in the water alongside a swamped craft.
In later phases of the program, these automatic skills have proven invaluable. On one occasion, an adult member who was pinned in a potentially dangerous position between a swamped canoe and floating debris was quickly and professionally brought aboard a nearby canoe by his younger companions.
Many of the parents of the Richland Washington First Ward, which sponsors Post 9201, bring all of their canoeing-age children to the training sessions. As a consequence, canoeing is becoming increasingly popular with all the youth.
The actual river training begins with dockside practice of “J” strokes at a local marina, builds through several practice runs on the Columbia or Yakima rivers, and finally culminates in a one- or two-day trip down the Grande Ronde or John Day rivers.
It’s great fun on the river, but it can be more fun for the adult leaders of youth if they know that our young men are equal to the test. Safety emphasis and adequate training have made white water canoeing an activity which can be enjoyed by all.
There’s still time for Boy Scouts to register for the 15th World Scout Jamboree this July 4–14. But not much! There are less than 300 places left for representatives from the United States.
The 11-day jamboree will be held in Kananaskis, near Banff and Calgary, Canada, a site of mountains, alpine meadows, glacial lakes, streams, forests, and bountiful wildlife. Official languages of the jamboree will be French and English, but the international language will be sign language.
Jamboree events will include a visit to the Calgary Stampede rodeo, rafting, motocross bicycle races, trap shooting, international tug-of-war, lacrosse, cricket, lawn bowling, gold panning, log rolling, and many other activities, including the pleasure of getting to know Scouts from all over the world. Regional tours are planned en route to the jamboree.
Elder Robert L. Backman, Young Men General President, will serve as one of four chaplains at the event.
Applications and further information are available at local council service centers and at the national council office of the International Division of Scouting.
Ye Are My Friends by Marvin J. Ashton (Deseret Book $6.95)
“I would like to give you a number of gifts; gifts that will bring you joy and happiness,” writes Elder Marvin J. Ashton. In his book, Elder Ashton shares his insights, his experiences, his testimony, and his knowledge of the gospel. Adapted from his talks, the book is a gift in itself.