Baton Rouge Louisiana Temple

Baton Rouge Louisiana Temple

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Happy Mother's Day!

Today, being Mother's Day, has given me time to reflect on the 61 years I was able to learn from my angel mother. I can't ever remember a time when Mom wasn't serving, and that's not just serving in Church callings but serving anyone and everyone on a regular, daily basis. I'll just say this to illustrate my point. As we exited the chapel after her funeral, a dear friend and also the accompanist that day, Judy Billeter, began to play the postlude music. The first hymn she played was "Scatter Sunshine." At first I thought it certainly wasn't your typical hymn for a funeral, but it was actually a perfect choice for the occasion. It indisputably describes my mom.

1. In a world where sorrow ever will be known,
Where are found the needy and the sad and lone,
How much joy and comfort you can all bestow,
If you scatter sunshine ev'rywhere you go.

[Chorus] Scatter sunshine all along your way. Cheer and bless and brighten
Ev'ry passing day. Scatter sunshine all along your way.
Cheer and bless and brighten ev'ry passing day.
2. Slightest actions often m
eet the sorest needs,
For the world wants daily little kindly deeds.
Oh, what care and sorrow you may help remove,
With your songs and courage, sympathy and love.[Chorus]

3. When the days are gloomy, s
ing some happy song;
Meet the world's repining with a courage strong.
Go with faith undaunted thru the ills of life;
Scatter smiles and sunshine o'er its toil and strife.
[Chorus] Text: Lanta Wilson Smith  Music: Edwin O. Excell, 1851-1921
Good looking, hard working elders--Elder Sato (he's hoping the mission will start allowing skateboards!), Elder Barnes, Elder Ware and Elder Martell 
We attended our Church meetings in the Natchez Ward then had to part company with our wonderful weekend companions as we headed in 2 different directions. On our way back to Baton Rouge we made a little diversion from the highway to check out a little town called Woodville, just north of the Mississippi-Louisiana border. It's been around for over 200 years, incorporating in 1811, just after the Louisiana purchase in 1803 but before Mississippi became a state in 1817. John James Audubon visited there in 1820 and found 26 species of birds that he documented and painted in his Birds of America series. I'm guessing that the little guy in the tree below is a direct descendant of one of those in his books.

Downtown Woodville--a pretty lonely looking place
Maybe everyone is at church and all the stores are closed on Sunday!
With my vast amount of knowledge in the area of birdology, I'm going to go out on a limb here (pun intended) and  state, categorically, that this little guy is, scientifically speaking, the Red-headed Woodpecker. Speaking of birds reminds me of a great story which also happens to be true. This occurred a few years ago in our former stake in Southern California. A very humble man was called to be the Bishop of one of the wards in our stake. He was so uncomfortable with the calling and sincerely and prayerfully sought for confirmation that his calling was from the Lord.  Because he was an avid birdwatcher, he took his binoculars and bird book and drove up into the canyon near his home. It wasn't too long before he spotted a bird that he'd never seen before, and he'd done plenty of birdwatching. So he put down the binoculars and thumbed through his bird guide until he found the exact bird that he'd just seen. What kind of a bird was it? A Bishop Bird! I'd say he received his answer.
We did find a few homes in some very idyllic settings

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