July 18, 2017
This morning our training started a half hour later than usual. We were glad for the extra half hour of sleep.
We started Military Relations Training by talking about tools. Each companionship was given two tools from a tool box. We were to tell the group two characteristics of our companions as a way to introduce us to the group. We got a level and needle nosed pliers. Then we put the tools in the tool box. Sister Sparrow wrote all of the characteristics on the white board.
We had six couples total in our training group. Elder and Sister Ryan are going to Schofield Barracks. Elder and Sister Bennett are going to Camp Le Jeune, South Carolina. Elder and Sister Gentry are going to Camp Humphreys in Korea. Elder and Sister Schuler are going to Great Lakes Naval Training Center. Elder and Sister Elmer are going to Fort Huachuca, Arizona. An interesting side note: We were penciled in a slot for Schofield Barracks before we sent in our papers. We did not know that the list with all of those slots was discarded, and we then received a call to the San Diego Mission. We found out that Elder and Sister Ryan were called to Kaneohe Bay Marine Base in Hawaii. Their Mission President contacted them shortly before they left for the MTC and changed their assignment to Schofield Barracks because they had no one coming to Schofield Barracks. We had a laugh about that (we accused them of stealing our assignment, it became a running joke); but we also know that we are supposed to be in San Diego, because there is someone we are supposed to meet.
We next talked about relationships and responsibilities. We interact with chaplains, stake presidents, bishops, the Mission President, the Military Relations Department in Salt Lake, and of course the military members and their families. Our responsibilities are to activate and retain, counsel and advise, teach and train, build bridges of understanding, and return and report.
We also talked about the resiliency course. Its title is Self-Reliance and Resiliency for Military Families. We used the pilot program on our last mission; however, it has since gone through the Church Curriculum process and can be found in the LDS Library under Families. Many bishops confuse this course with the Self-Reliance Program that the Church has through the Welfare Department. It is one of our responsibilities to help the bishops understand the course that we teach. Elder and Sister Jensen, from Military Relations, taught us a principle from the first lesson. Our assignment for tomorrow was for each couple to teach a principle from each of the next seven lessons. We were assigned lesson 8.
During the day, Sister Sparrow continued to add things to the tool box that was listed on the white board. It will be full by the end of training.
We went to choir practice for the devotional. The bleachers are very uncomfortable with very little leg room. Luckily for the last two practices, Sister Fanning sat in the very back in some regular chairs. She was not so lucky this time. She was very uncomfortable by the time the devotional started, and hurting a lot by the time the devotional was over. Elder Fanning took a little pillow to sit on.
Elder Paul Koelliker (an Emeritus General Authority) and his wife spoke at the devotional. His talk was very interesting. We both felt the Spirit.
We got back to the room at about 8:45 and dropped into bed.
The six Military Relations couples.
Elder and Sister Bennett going to Camp Le Jeune, South Carolina