Tag Archives: Palmyra Ward



They released me as ward organist today. I was thinking it has been 10 years, but it has only been 8.  Eight years I’ve served as the Palmyra Ward Organist.  My calling started September 20th, 2009.  That’s 8 years and 1 month.

They called Sister Lynda Ingold as the organist.  She will do an excellent job.  I had a feeling she’d be called.

Squash x 3

Dinner is squash x 3 today.  We are having spaghetti squash in place of pasta.  On top of that we will have a butternut squash sauce.  For dessert I am making a mock pineapple (zucchini) upside down cake.

Sisters Cahoon and Searle came for dinner.  They got a kick out of all the squash use in the meal.  Sister Searle hadn’t seen the food storage, so we took them in to the basement to see it.

Rebecca and Steve

My daughter Rebecca met a young man online.  He’s visiting her.  She called and we talked.  It sounds like Steve’s a really nice guy.


I’ve been on this Mentos craving lately.  Did you know they make caramel Mentos?

They do.  I bought some, and I’m not impressed.  They are like an inside-out Milk Dud.. .but not as good.

Now, the spearmint Mentos are my favorite.  While I am not a huge fan of peppermint, of all the peppermint candies, I like Mentos.

I think it is the texture.

Angel Attendance

Angel Attendance

I can with assurity say angel attendance happens in the Palmyra Ward.  When it is pageant time there are angels present.  There is no way our tiny choir sings like that.  I hear the basses, altos and sopranos during practice.  That’s not them singing during the closing hymn on pageant Sundays.

The cultural hall in addition to the chapel was filled during Sacrament Meeting.  Many of those people leave after Sacrament Meeting, while a good number stick around and attend the rest of the meetings.  It’s always fun to hear where they come from.


Workshop starts today.  While they start on Sunday, a few years ago I decided to start attending Sunday evening so I could get in the group picture.  It’s kind of a bummer to get a group shot of your class and you’re the only one not in it.

Someone commented, “I thought you couldn’t go places on Sunday.”

I explained that I believe in keeping the Sabbath Day holy.  The choice is mine as to how I do that.  I went on to explain I want to be in the group photo for myself, and also for others.  I make friends during these classes and I’d be disappointed if one of them weren’t in the photo.

While I wish they would do away with the Sunday night group photo and take the group photo on Thursday night, it would be a long uphill battle.

Visitors Galore

Visitors Galore

It is not even Hill Cumorah Pageant time and we had visitors galore at church.  They opened the overflow curtains during Sacrament meeting.  I think it is safe to say tourist season is open.  The Palmyra Ward probably gets more visitors than any other ward in the church.

President Clark was visiting our ward today.  I wish I would have known.  I would have let him hear a little Here Comes the Sun.

I managed to get some photographs of our Relief Society Presidency in action.

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Relief Society Presidency

We didn’t feed the missionaries today because they had assignments in Fayette.  It’s too bad because I had a great meal planned.  So, Elizabethe and I enjoyed a casual dinner with lots of leftovers.

Weather wise, things have taken a turn for the COLD.  We got some hail this afternoon and they are saying it will be in the low 30s tonight.  They are predicting frost.  This comes just as I was thinking I can turn all of the heaters in the house off.

Great!  We’ve got our tomatoes out.  So, I’m praying we don’t get a frost.

I’m not looking forward to tomorrow’s drive to and from Binghamton.  Let’s hope this cold weather doesn’t bring snow.  I don’t think it will, but it’s a long drive to Binghamton and I’d appreciate some good weather.

Officially Called

Officially Called

I’m officially called to my new calling – Palmyra Ward Public Relations Specialist. Brother Rumsey set me apart after Sacrament Meeting and it was announced in Sacrament Meeting.  This will fit in nicely being a CSM Photographer.

I don’t know a lot about the calling.  I was Public Relations Director for a short time while I was in the mission field back in the 70s.  Things have changed a lot since then.

Elizabethe suggested I just make macaroni and cheese and mix in the leftover ham for dinner.  So, that’s what I did – mac, cheese and ham.  It was simple, quick and easy.  That left me time for a nice long nap.

Somewhere in there I managed to take the sacrament to one of my home teaching families.  We had a nice, but short visit.

The upcoming week is another week full of appointments and a few meetings.  It makes me ask, “When can I have a break?”

When I left the 9-5 (and being on-call) I thought my life would get simpler.

At the same time, with my new church calling, I see there are a lot of areas of service I should encourage within our ward.  We have a struggling Chamber of Commerce that could use the wisdom of older folks.  We have a lot of activities in the community where this wisdom could come in handy.

Thinning Numbers

Thinning Numbers

This is the time of year that the Palmyra Ward has thinning numbers.  Looking out over the congregation today I noticed how there were many empty seats.  Of course, the overflow was open which made the thinning numbers look… well… thin.

Other times of the year, especially during Hill Cumorah Pageant, we fill the chapel, overflow, cultural hall and stage.  We might have 1,000 to 1,500 during pageant time.  Unfortunately, we don’t get many tourist during the winter months.

After church Elizabethe, Peter Baxendale, and I went to visit Heidi Baker in the hospital.  We brought her the Sacrament and visited with her for a few minutes.  It was nice to see that she had color in her face.

By the time we got home, we only had a couple of hours before the sister missionaries came for dinner.  So, we grabbed a light lunch and then took a short nap before it was time to fix dinner.

I kept dinner on the easy side.  I made scrambled eggs and we had tortilla chips and salsa.  I figure the missionaries probably don’t get fed breakfast food very often.

As to the weather, they forecasted snow, but that didn’t happen.  Instead, we have some very strong winds blowing.  This will be a real test as to how strong the trees are.  It is VERY windy.

Pageant Sunday 2015

Pageant Sunday 2015

It is Pageant Sunday 2015 and this is a big deal in the Palmyra Ward.  It’s like a stake conference in the number of people who come to church, but it is business as usual with larger than normal class attendance too.

Our small choir is always assisted by heavenly voices on this Sunday.  I know how they sound, but something special happens during Pageant Sunday.  Voices come out of the air that one cannot describe unless you’re sitting there and hearing more voices sing than people present.  No words can describe it.

After church, Elizabethe’s cousin’s son called.  He is in pageant and was at the hill and asked if he could come visit us.  We drove to the hill to pick him up and bring him to the house.  We had a nice visit and dinner.

copyright 2015 db walton

Jarom and Elizabethe

Also at church today, I ran in to a group from Sao Palo, Brazil, that I ran in to in Harmony, Pennsylvania.  We were both excited to see each other again.  I managed to get a picture of them in front of the building in Palmyra…


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Group from Brazil

The last few days have been quite busy.  Elizabethe and I spent a quiet evening watching the Woman in Gold – a movie about the Klimt painting and a woman’s fight to get it returned after the Nazis stole it in WWII.  Great movie!

Harvest Dinner

Harvest Dinner

Tonight is the ward harvest dinner and I’m thinking of going with Ron and Mary.  It will all depend on how I feel.

I spent the day working on a painting of Natalie.  I worked on it until my hand got tired, and then I just rested.

When the time came, I went with Ron and Sister Wallace to the ward dinner.  When we got to the church, we got the wheelchair out and I used it.  I didn’t realize how uncomfortable a wheelchair can be.

Earlier in the Day

I had been invited to join a Facebook page about last-days revelations (a Latter-day Saint oriented page).  I finally had to leave the group because of the false doctrine being taught and the unwillingness for the group to sustain gospel-backed information.

At one point I posted asking for “chapter and verse”.  It was met with criticism.

When someone preaches things about the future of the world with no way to demonstrate its basis in the scriptures, well, most of the time it is false doctrine.

Here’s some stuff I read that just… well… curled my toenails…

  • Pre-mortal spirits procreated in the pre-existence
  • Everyone will be 30 years old when they are resurrected
  • Adam and Eve had regular sexual intercourse in the Garden of Eden, they just couldn’t have children
  • During the millennium we will all live in tents in tent cities
  • Everyone will need to pack-up for the move to Missouri so you better have a way to haul your food storage, camp stoves, sleeping bags, etc.
  • You should only store what you personally put away.  We are not to store stuff we bought in the store.
  • God gives people near-death experiences because the prophet doesn’t have time to tell us these things.

All of this stuff is unsupported by any scriptures.  And, when you have stuff like that, and it doesn’t come from our latter-day prophets, then it is most likely in the category of “false doctrine”.

This talk from a recent conference tells us where we should turn…Living Prophets

Another thing that really concerned me is most of the members of this group were quoting some lady who goes around the country talking about her near-death experience as though she was the source of information for what is to come.

Here’s some guidelines I’ve decided to follow.  They are largely based on what prophets have taught me during my life (notice, I said my life – not Brigham Young’s life, not George Albert Smith’s life, but during my life span thus far):

  • Store a year’s supply of food
  • Store water
  • Pay off your debts
  • Store fuel for heat and cooking
  • Be spiritually prepared

That said, here are some things people have read in to the command to store food…

  • Store guns
  • Store ammunition
  • Store automotive fuel
  • Have an alternative way to travel

I’m not saying it is wrong to store the above, but we have not been asked as a church to do those things.   But, whatever the future may hold, we will hear it first from our living prophet.

Few Visitors and Many Attending

Palmyra Ward gets a lot of visitors, but today, there were few, yet there were many people attending.  As the bishop pointed out, they were mostly members.   That was good to see.

I got tapped to come play piano for part of the time during the block.  I always enjoy doing that, but came priesthood time, it for a moment appeared that I was the only one in the High Priest Group Leadership that was there.  It turned out, Bob was there, I just didn’t see him until later.

Sisters Killen and Boseman came for dinner.  I had made a chuck roast with vegetables and mashed potatoes.  After dinner, I attempted to do some photos for my mission assignment, but the lighting in the kitchen is poor.  So, from now on, I need to have the studio set up for that sort of stuff.