Sunday, May 17, 2015

Nauvoo Missionaries aplenty, Ramus Illinois, and The Cokeville Miracle

 Remember a few months ago when I reported that we only had 115 missionaries here in Nauvoo? Well, that has definitely changed. Below are pictures of the welcome breakfast we hold to welcome new missionaries. The Young Performing Missionaries (YPM's) are here and mayhem will break loose in a week when they start performing. The "Yippems" (YPM's) as Elder Johnson and I call them, are amazingly talented. I heard reports that there were over 300 candidates trying to qualify to come to Nauvoo as a YPM this year.

 Two of our son's came to Nauvoo with their families. What a treat for us to have a break from crazy busy to be reinvigorated with family fun. While they were here, we visited a place that used to be called Ramus in which Elder Johnson's Great-Great-Grandfather, Benjamin Franklin Johnson, settled in the 1840's. It was renamed Macedonia after the LDS people left in 1846. and today it is called Webster.
This is the site of the very first meeting house built by the Latter-day Saints in Ramus. The Mormons built temples, a Mission Training Center, Cultural Halls, 2,500 homes, etc. etc. etc. but they  met as a congregation in groves of trees rather than  build a church. This chaple was the one and only one until the saints got to Utah. That's an interesting fact I think considering how many LDS churches there are in the world today.
 Ramus is about thirty minutes from Nauvoo in today's driving time. It is actually quite close to Carthage where Elder Johnson and I served our first four months.
 The church above was reconstructed next to the original church using some of the material from the old chapel.

The plaque below sits on the property near the cornerstone markers.

 In the last few years of Joseph Smith's life, he spent quite a bit of time in Ramus as he tried to avoid the angry mobs who sought his life.

The plaque below stands a few blocks from the site of the old church. 

In Ramos at Benjamin Franklin Johnson's home, two sections of the Doctrine of Covenants were revealed, Sections 130 and 131. Benjamin was 13 years younger than Joseph Smith and Joseph fondly called him "Benny".

Joel Hills Johnson mentioned above is brother to Benjamin Franklin Johnson.

Sure love family! We'll have more visitors in a few weeks.
 Grandchildren visiting our old home, Carthage Jail.

 Wagon rides are a winner for all the guests.

 Below is a picture of one of the "groves" where the saints met for church instead of an enclosed building. It is in the flats of historic Nauvoo near the stage where the pageants are performed.

We also visited the Historic Nauvoo Cemetery.

Mission Training center or 70's Hall as they called it in 1840's

Mississippi River in background below
A couple of months ago, the movie producer TC Christiansen along with prior missionary in Nauvoo and principal of the Cokeville Elementary school, Max Excell, came to Nauvoo. We were allowed to preview the movie coming out in your town Cokeville Miracle followed by a question and answer session. I feel that a tremendous effort was made to tell the story as experienced by those involved with very little embellishment. (The joke about the dog named Peaches did not happen.)

Amazing! Heart Rending! and Miraculous! 

Will you go see Cokeville Miracle? 
You'll love it I think!

1 comment:

  1. Happy Birthday Amy! I love your blog. I love the history you included and the pictures. It is amazing the Saints only built one meeting house. Thanks for sharing. I am hoping the Cokeville Miracle comes to Denver so I can see it. Have a great day!