Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Welcoming NINETEEN New Arrivals

On July 23rd, we welcomed three separate flights of new arrivals within a sixteen-hour period, for a total of NINETEEN new additions to the Greatest Mission on Earth.

The early morning flight brought us the first batch who looked pretty chipper for having just come off the red-eye flight from Utah.

Left to right:   Elder Branning (AP), Elder Lines, Sister Sottili, Elder Richards, Elder Fisher (AP), Sister Johnson,
Sister Connelly, Pres & Sis Cooke, Elder Jelitto (AA), Elder Miyasaki (AA), Elder Sum, Elder DeWitt,
 Elder Brimhall and Elder De Jesus

We took them from the airport to the magnificent Washington DC Temple, where they were given time to wander, contemplate, and meet Elder and Sister Eyring who preside over the Visitors' Center.

Elder Lines, the President, Sister Connelly and Sister Sottili

Sister Sottili:  "This is MY temple now!"
This temple rises higher than any other temple in the world.

The President and Elder Lines walk the grounds

Elder Jelitto reigns in the newcomers

Sister Eyring welcomes the new crew

Elder De Jesus, Sister Johnson, Elder Richards, Sister Sottili, Elder Sum, Pres & Sis Cooke,
 Elder Brimhall, Sister Connelly, Elder Lines and Elder DeWitt

On the way to the Mission Home, we stopped for the traditional breakfast at the Gaithersburg IHOP:

This first set of new arrivals went to bed for short naps before evening training 
while the mission home  prepared for dinner.

Sister Lorenzana helps get the mission home ready

Pausing for prayer

Sister Helene Doue is an enormous blessing, in charge of  the dinner

The morning arrivals share a table with Brother and Sister Lorenzana (First Counselor in the Mission Presidency)

THE  SECOND  BATCH / Afternoon Arrivals:
Left to right clockwise:  Sister Jorgensen, Elder Stanley, Elder Willis, Elder Brimhall, Elder Manning,
 Elder Branning (AP), Elder Tolman, Elder VonTrapp, Elder Wright and Sister Robertson

 By the next morning, we finally had all nineteen newcomers, the last batch having arrived after midnight (and too exhausted to pose for a photo).

L to R:  Elder Richards, Elder Brimhall, Elder Wright, Elder Tolman, Sister Connelly, Elder Sum, Pres Cooke,
 Sister Sottili, Sister Cooke, Elder Swensen, Sister Johnson, Elder De Jesus, Elder DeWitt, Sister Robertson,
Elder Lines, Elder Manning (sorry to have lost the lower part of his handsome face),
Elder VonTrapp, Sister Jorgensen, Elder Willis, Elder Welch, Elder Stanley

In a room full of experienced missionaries on one side (not pictured) and new arrivals on the side seen here, the President makes the highly-anticipated announcements of Trainer/Trainee companionships.

Sister Bullock can't wait to wrap her arms around Sister Jorgensen

Elder Brimhall gets a bear hug from his Big Brother Companion, Elder Shoemig

Elder De Jesus literally leaps for joy to meet his trainer, Elder Olsen

Elder Arnett documents his new companionship with Elder Sum

     And with that, they were off       ...      to begin their new assignments ...

... honoring the 24th of July by remembering the pioneers...

"For some must push and some must pull..."

1 comment:

  1. I can't tell you how excited I am to find this blog! My son, Patrick Greding, will be entering the MTC on August 21st heading for the Washington DC North mission- EXACTLY 24 years to the day that his dad served in the EXACT same mission! It's a dream come true for Patrick and my husband. Thank you for all you will do for my dear boy. -Gillian Greding