Never in my life did I think that my ward would be classified as a number. Never figured I’d go to BYU or live in Utah, and still haven’t. But I’m now a member of the Southern Virginia University 4th Student Ward. And quite honestly, I’m loving it. I still miss my home ward, but I am finding my BV ward to be pretty awesome. A little awkward at first – I never really went to Relief Society in Cromwell or the ‘adult’ Sunday School, so it was definitely one of those ‘learn as you go’ deals.
One of the things I really miss is the fact that there aren’t really any little kids running around. I miss watching and playing with them during Sacrament meeting and in between classes. But unfortunately, the family ward is an hour and a half away I hear. But one of the sisters visiting from the family ward welcomed us to come and ‘crash the ward’ and that they had playdates that we were welcome to attend. Hmm…
It was hilarious, in the home ward I always thought our speakers were a little longwinded. Figured it came with the territory. Never again will I complain. Our ward business took half an hour to fourty-five minutes. I was afraid to glance at the clock. True story. Of course, every calling under the sun was announced and we manifested and all that jazz (sounds irreverent, but I don’t mean it that way, promise!). It was done in somewhat large groups, but still, it took quite some time. We also recognized the ‘new’ members – those who just got their records sent from their home wards. That took quite some time too.
It takes a bit of getting used to here – we do everything opposite of what is done at home. First is Relief Society, then Sunday School, followed by Sacrament meeting. And not to mention, my ward here is about a quarter of the size of Cromwell (haha, fourth ward… fourth of the ward…haha). We just fill the Chapel up, with some spaces in between. In the awkward pause between people bearing their testimonies I attempted to do a little math. Ten main pews with those half-pews on either side of the main one, pressed against the wall. Calculating that roughly 7 people sit in the main pews… yeah, that’s as far as I got. Our ward is small. I love it.
In Relief Society today our RS President, Georgi, taught a lesson about Relief Society itself. We had a talk by Relief Society General President Julie B. Beck which I found really interesting. It really excited me to begin Visiting Teaching – I cannot wait until I get my assignment! All of my mom’s visiting teachers were so amazing, just wonderful women that were such great examples to me throughout the years (I understand it was probably unintentional, but still, these women are my heroes!). I want the opportunity to work as an individual with other individuals. To have service opportunities like that. It excites me. I’m ready. I love to serve. I’m pumped!! Someone mentioned President Uchtdorf’s talk in the last General Conference about how we are the helping hands of Jesus Christ. I love that talk. It really hit home when we were talking about Visiting Teaching. Mentioning Pres. Uchtdorf made me that much more excited (he’s one of my favorite speakers ever).
One of my favorite things at Church is the music. I know a lot of people complain about how slow the traditional hymns are, but quite honestly, I love them. I love how peaceful they are, the traditional tunes and words. While the priesthood are passing the sacrament, I usually am perusing the hymnal, reading the words like they’re a book of poems. I anticipate learning new hymns. Every ward has those few hymns that are the old standbys and favorites that you sing every other Sunday. I want to see what hymns are cherished by the fourth ward!
I spent the rest of today catching up on some correspondance and taking an hour or two to play a few games with some newfound friends. Others complain about how boring Sabbath days usually are, but I love the peaceful feeling that comes with the lack of any responsibilities other than getting up and around for Church. The rest of the day is open for relaxing and enjoying a quiet day.