Sunday, November 27, 2011

Loomis 1st Ward

This is my ward building. I love this place. This is my home. When I think of home, I think of my family's house/property and this building. :) It defines Loomis and home to me.

This morning the kid I used to babysit gave his homecoming talk in our home ward. He just got home from his MISSION. Yes, MISSION. I feel so old. That aside, I thought a trip to the home ward was well worth getting up at 7 am on a Sunday. Yeah, this year they start at 8:30am...ewww.

So I showed up and was instantly greeted by several families I had known since I was a kid. So happy. Then I walked into the building. And I took a deep breath and smelled the building. And it smelled exactly the same as it did when I was a kid. Even the remodel when I was 12 didn't change the smell of the building. I love it. Memories swirled around me as I wandered the halls. It was wonderful. It was such a nostalgic day, you might think that I hadn't been here in years, even though it, in fact, had only been a few months.

I've always loved this building. My mom and grandparents helped build it back in the day. In fact some of the electrical was wired wrong and backwards because of my grandpa. A Bryson Boo-boo, if you will. (Oh, and I will.) Who can say that they went to Church in the building that their family helped build? No one. Ok, except for half of Loomis. Half the people still in Loomis helped build that building. People don't leave Loomis. And if they do, they generally come back. Just goes to show how awesome the town is. Especially the fact that it is still a "town."

Ok, back to the ward. I love how, despite the fact that there are tons of new people that I did not know, there were enough people there that I knew and knew me that I felt like I was coming home. Though, it was kind of funny because 1) I got introduced as Erin in Relief Society and then I corrected it and people were disappointed (You better feel special Erin!). 2) Then others didn't know that Erin had a sister older than Steven. Huh. Guess that's what I get for moving away. I kept getting, "Ohhh, that's Erin's older sister." I didn't know what that was supposed to mean. It was pretty funny.

I watched the deacons pass the sacrament and I could distinctly remember some of them being born! Ack! I had no idea who the others were.

Sean gave a great talk about Charity and showing love towards others. It was strange having Kevin sit next to me and thinking about Sean at that age. I remembered Sean being baptized and then getting the priesthood and passing the sacrament for the first time when he was 12, and then blessing the sacrament, and then his farewell talk and now his homecoming talk. 14 years flashed before me in about 5.2 seconds. It wasn't fair. Time just needs to stay still. Just for a few, let's say 15, years. My babies are growing up way too fast and I don't feel like I'm at all.

I love how kooky and quirky the ward is. I have some GREAT memories of church through the years. One time the ward chorister stopped the hymn in the middle of the song in order to correct everyone on how we should be singing it. "The hymn is joyful people! Sing Joyfully!" Awesome. Another time someone read the newspaper at the pulpit. Turns out it was supposed to be some kind of object lesson, but all I remember is that he read the newspaper. Again, Awesome. Another time some one brought LIVE lobsters to Church. My grandpa yelled out during the sacrament. That was totally awesome (and yes, we laughed outloud uncontrollably when he did!). And there have been some interesting testimonies born over the years. I'm sure all wards have funny things happen, but it seems to me that people always are amazed and surprised at things that happen in this ward. LOVE IT! My BFF and I have talked about this numerous times and always agree about the ward.

I think that what I love most about the ward is that, for the most part, I think people are trying to be good. They are trying to better themselves and their families. They are trying to come closer to Christ and they are doing the best they can. Sure, they all have had difficulties, and yes, because the ward is old and close-knit, everyone knows everything about everyone. But it's okay, because we are all one big family.

I am a product of this ward. I am who I am because of my mom, my grandparents, and Loomis First Ward. My leaders and teachers were all fabulous. The Bishoprics and Relief Society Presidencies that helped my family over the years were so great. I had the best home teacher in the world (he still goes out of his way to talk to me and make me feel that he's still watching out for me--even today :) ). I can't tell you how much I love this ward.

So that is my wonderfully quirky and perfect ward. I love it and wouldn't trade it for the world.

Love you Loomis First Ward!

I think it's pretty clear what I'm grateful for today. :)

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