When we dream of our lives in metamorphosis, we at the same time dream of similar change in our congregations and in our communities. The Zionic condition is dependent, according to the scripture, on the spiritual condition of God’s people in partnership with the great I Am.
When President McMurray brought words to God’s people in June,1997, it touched the deep yearning already in place in our hearts. The vision, clearly articulated and poetically shared, with concrete objectives which will serve as signposts that we are on the road to transformation.
I have seen it in the face of expanded children’s and youth ministries. I have seen it in theological exploration of what it means to be a people of peace. I have seen it in the face of a steward who adjusts their retirement in order to contribute sacrificially for God’s vision. I have seen congregations who have modeled acts of peace, justice and reconciliation so that others may learn from their victories and their challenges. I have seen the seeds of new congregations, particularly in areas of multi-cultural diversity.
Truly this is an exciting time to be a part of the Church and to be a part of the deep longing for us to become a people of justice. The Biblical definition for justice is “things as they should be.” We have over $13.5 million committed of the $21 million goal and over $5 million in cash. We have over eighty full-time new ministers, primarily focusing on children and youth, missionary and congregational consulting. The Council of Twelve has identified over two hundred potential locations for planting of new congregations.
Your support, those of you who receive this newsletter, is critical to the success of the people who feel called to the Zionic enterprise. We hope you will join us in prayers, actions and sacrifice. May this holiday season be one where you feel the special presence of the Master who brought hope into the world.
Larry R. Norris - The Presiding Bishopric
Included in that three is John Lutes he is at Osan AFB. He is an elder and would be happy to meet with any of you and hold church services. Look him up.
That was until my mom disagreed. Instead of listening to the stories of honor and loyalty of carrying and following a father’s career, she wanted me to follow my dreams and make my own choices in life.
My father later told me that in the beginning, he didn’t plan to stay in the Army as a career job, which was surprising to me. Being a child with little knowledge, I didn’t think anyone would ever join the military just for a little while. That thought stayed in the childish head of mine until my middle school years.
Now as a student ready to become a senior, I’m forced to plan my future. The thought of trying to receive an ROTC scholarship came into consideration. Looking back in my life, I finally realize that the treasures of military life greatly outweighs the burdens.
As a military child, I received many lessons and memories that I could have only received through living in a military community. Being around many communities gave me an understanding personality that is needed in society. During international conflicts, I grew spiritually and also intellectually. While other children couldn’t have cared less what went on in Bosnia, Somalia, and other hot spots in the world, I, a child of a soldier, was attentive of current issues requiring military involvement. I often prayed so that my dad an other soldiers would be out of danger.
After learning many lessons in life, I have no regrets of moving to many places as my family did. I believe that the job my dad has chosen helped me create a patriotic spirit in me that would last me through my life. I wonder if there is any job in the world that is more rewarding than to know that you are working for your country and the people of the United States of America.
In conclusion I want to live a life that follows my dad’s
example to serve our country.”
Following an initial period of training at Lackland AFB, she was sent to the Armed Forces intelligence School in Denver where she became a skilled intelligence specialist in imagery interpretation and targeting intelligence.
Captain Manuel joined the church under interesting but unusual circumstances. While a student at Radford College in Virginia, she and her roommate, Edith Gallaher, became acquainted with another Radford student named Joy Evans. Carolyn and Edith discussed between themselves that Joy seemed somewhat different and so one day they asked her face to face, “What gives with you?”
It was not an unfriendly question, but one in keeping with the dorm conversation of the time and one that would generally be received as a compliment.
Joy’s response was at first hesitant, but eventually she answered simply, “You see, I made a commitment in my life; it is something meaningful to me and makes me what I am.” It was an unexpected answer, but sufficient for the moment. That evening, however, the answer began to haunt them. What kind of commitment? With whom? Why did she make it? In the days and weeks that followed, Carolyn and Edith began asking Joy these questions and demanding answers. It was during these discussions that they first heard of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day saints.
“Joy never preached to us,” Carolyn said afterward. “I suppose she knew that college students are in no mood to have someone preach to them. She very patiently unfolded the story and explained that through her church she had made a commitment to use her life in being concerned with others. We were fascinated that a fellow student would have made such a commitment and we wanted to hear more, but Joy would share her story with us a little at a time. Looking back now, it seems that we almost had to drag it out of her. Amazingly, everything that Joy told us somehow seemed to hang together,” Carolyn added.
Later Carolyn met Joy’s family and saw in her parents the same commitments in life and concern for others that had so intrigued her in the earlier encounters with Joy at Radford. “Is this family for real?” she asked herself.
After graduating from Radford, she began her career with the Air Force, but the haunting story would not go away. When Carolyn arrived in Denver to begin training at the Armed Forces Intelligence School, she called the stake president and asked the name of the nearest church. A few months later near the end of her course, Edith wrote that she would shortly be visiting her in Denver. On 28 June 1970, both Carolyn and Edith were baptized. All because one girl had lived a life that made them ask “What gives with you?”
Today even though miles apart, these three women are indeed sisters through the influence of the Master and the Good News that He brings to men and women everywhere.
As I reported earlier Shirley and Richard Cozart are new to the association but her letter impressed me and with her permission I want to reprint part of it.
I must say I am so glad to hear that something has been put in place to meet some of the needs of our Military Brothers & Sisters. My husband spent 30 years in the AF and the Armed Forces Newsletter was one piece of mail I looked forward to. Besides keeping us in touch with special events I enjoyed the listing by state of our Bros & Srs. when they changed stations. Especially so when we were stationed at Inscirlik CDI in Adana, Turkey. I wrote to the newsletter shortly after arriving in Adana - Not only did they respond to my need for contact, my letter was printed. It brought a letter and a visit from 3 members in Hanover, Germany. In our 2 year in Incirlik we met only 3 members stationed there, and the 3 members from Germany. We became a part of the Chapel family and enjoyed it but missed fellowship we’d enjoyed with the Saints. After returning stateside I was asked to serve on the committee and did so until Richard retired.
I missed it very much when it was no longer published. I would like to be the contact for members or those with an interest in learning of the church in our area. I am a priest - we have a very active tho small group in Panama City. Just built our sanctuary and it was consecrated on December 7th. I am the recorder for our Branch and Women’s Leader. We have a good youth group and getting ready to start a Young Peacemaker’s Club. I feel like we have a lot to offer and willingly help those moving to our area any way we can. It’s a good place to live and many have passed through our little congregation to go on to greater opportunity. Feel free to give our name and address to any who may be coming to either Tyndall or Naval Coastal Systems. Thanks again for the service - It helped me and I’m sure will help others. Its need is great. Richard has base privileges and is an Elder. We meet and provide ministry wherever needed. Please call on us.
Sincerely a Sr. in Christ - Shirley Cozart
For those of you that are in the Arizona, Southern California, New Mexico and other points southwest, have a unique opportunity this year. President Grant McMurray will be at the Arizona Winter Reunion. The reunion dates are 7 - 12 February and is held in Glendale, AZ. Glendale is the 4th largest city in Arizona and is just north of Phoenix. If any of you can get the time off and can attend it sure would be worth your while. If you need further information I will be glad to provide it. Incidentally the cost of the reunion is $12 per person. We’ll be there.
There is to be a conference scheduled for 30 April to 2 May 1999 at 24 cities throughout the US. As I understand it, there should be some access to this by way of the internet. As we find out more information, we’ll pass it on to you. If you are close to any of the cities, you can register to participate.
Lots of things are happening throughout the church and it sure is good to be a part of it at this time. I want to thank all of you for making our association go. May the season of the year be especially pleasant for all of you. You are, collectively, in our prayers daily and I remind those who are not members of your participation and work.
HAVE A JOYOUS CHRISTMAS SEASON AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR.
updated: 14 Apr 2001
Additions? Corrections? Questions? Contact the Ministry to Military Personnel at CofChristPeacekeepers@yahoo.com!