December 24, 2012
Matthew Marshall, Utah: “The Polar Star Stands Still”
I took this picture during a family reunion this summer near Fairview, Utah. It was during the Perseid Meteor Shower, so every night we would go out and look at the stars if the sky was clear. On one of those nights after taking a few pictures of the stars, I decided to try and take a picture to capture the motion of the stars and the Milky Way. After examining the picture, I saw that all the stars were rotating about a point that was not captured. I then set my camera to try and capture the stars’ axis of rotation, started the exposure, and went to bed.
One of the thoughts that I had from this picture is how although the stars appear to stand still in the night sky, they are in fact moving throughout the night. The Polar Star is also known as the North Star because it is very near the axis of the earth’s rotation. It stands still in the night sky and can be used as a reference for navigation. I have felt that this picture demonstrates the motion of the stars and consistency of the Polar Star very well.
December 3, 2012
Kevin Christiansen, Arizona: “Climbing Higher”
I was fourteen years old the first time I went rock climbing. It was also my first camp out as a teacher and, to be honest, I was not very excited about going. We had gone rappelling as a ward when I was a deacon, and afterwards I was sure that I went down the cliff slower than anyone else. But rock climbing proved to be different. I had a great time, and it has since become one of my very favorite activities.
I enjoy the feeling I get when I finish a difficult route and I can look on God's creations from a bird’s-eye view. I enjoy spending time with friends as we help each other reach the top or even just talk about life while sitting at the bottom. I love the physical and the mental aspect of rock climbing. I love the challenge to improve.
This picture is of my friend’s hands as he belays for another climber. In the October 2006 general conference, Elder Scott compared rock climbing to our journey through life. The only way to be successful and happy is to use proper safety equipment and help each other along.