Thursday, August 09, 2007

A GOLDEN EXPERIENCE


The Nauvoo Pageant was SO fun to be in. I found out we were actually the FIFTH and LAST cast of the pageant. We met some of the best families imaginable who were in the pageant with us. One family in our cast, the Bergesons, had 8 kids under the age of 10. If I wondered how things would be with TWO young kids, or I sometimes thought it was tough having late nights with them unto 11:30 pm on the stage – then I just thought of this family. If THEY can do it with 8 young kids, then I shouldn’t think two winks about handling it with only two! Its all about perspective. A SIDE NOTE: If you should choose to enlarge the picture by clicking you will notice Brians very first beard, which survived only during the week of the pageant.This is my parents, my sister Sarah, and my Brother Brent - who were in the same Gold Cast as us.

We drank like Camels - they luckily had water for us to drink!

Just to give you an idea about the success of the pageant. I didn’t realize this myself until I got this emailed to me from someone in the pageant:

Missionary Success at the Pageant
As a family we have been drawn to Nauvoo to play a small role in building the kingdom through the Nauvoo Pageant. We know the work of the Lord goes on all over the world and you don't have to come 18 hours from home to be missionaries. We can do that anywhere. However, we have been blessed to be a small part in this great missionary effort and the work moves forward. The first year of the pageant in 2005 we had heard that other pageants were getting over 400 referrals each year and we were amazed. At first we were very uncomfortable asking for referrals from those that attended the pageant. Our first day of the pageant in 2005 we got 6 referrals as an entire cast. The next night we had 16. Some may remember the missionaries challenging us to try for 100. When we got 130 they admitted they didn't think it was even possible but had felt inspired to asked anyway. President Renouf began working with us along with the directors to focus on the real reason why we were at the pageant: to bring souls to Christ and give them an opportunity to enjoy the blessings of the Celestial Kingdom. We weren't putting on a pageant. We were building the kingdom. In 2006 our highest night for referrals was 236 and we finished the 22 performances with around 2100 referrals. This year we set records weekly and finished the last night with 751 referrals that night alone. Over 5,000 referrals were received THIS year from the pageant. I know it is not about the numbers, but the spirit is so strong here and we have learned that by small and weak things great things are accomplished. The amazing thing is that our children have been the best example to us and have caused a great work to commence.


I am totally wowed by the opening of hearts that occurred during the pageant. The kids there were like missionary warriors – they usually got twice as many referrals as the adults – they were like miniatures of God’s Army.

We were in the KIMBALL DISTRICT (like an MTC district) These two are our district leaders - Heber and Vilate Kimball.

Will we do the pageant again? Brian and I really think we should do this every summer if we can. I really feel it brought us closer together as a family.

P.S. Brooke is still in her “Dog” phase as you may note from the pictures. She is no longer Clifford – she is now “Copper.” Although she was also happy to share her identity as a “pioneer girl” while in her dress, thank goodness!

6 comments:

Cami said...

That looks really fun. What a great thing to do with your fam!

The Jones Family said...

sounds like so much fun! I keep telling Rocky we need to go to NY one summer, for the pageant (and to see some family members!)

To be in it would be an experience I would LOVE!

Brooke, is just the cutest thing by the way!

Mary said...

Hi, Bonnie! I just talked to Christy yesterday on the phone - she told me all about how wonderful the pageant was. Wish I could have been part of it, too. I suppose I got to do my own traveling with the choir, and building the kingdom. It was really fun to see you in Chicago. We're in Colorado, now, and all settled in to our new house.

Thanks for emailing me your blog!

Brett and Kasia Gustaveson said...

Hey, we were just in Nauvoo! What a wonderful place. I wish we could have seen you guys in the pageant. That is a really great experience. Also, your children are the cutest pioneer children I've ever seen!

rachel said...

Bonnie, you guys look great. If not for Tyler's shoes (and that lightpole) that picture could be straight from the 1800s! (Although people aren't usually smiling in those old photos!) So glad you guys had fun! love,

Darcie said...

How fantastic! Maybe one day we'll get to go to the pageant.