Sunday, November 28, 2010

Missouri and Illinois Adventures

We've been visiting jails! Yes - cross country to see jails...well, and other things. Here's our travelogue.

A week ago Friday, we headed out of town for a siblings reunion. We spent time on Saturday at Liberty Jail in Liberty Missouri, where we saw where the prophet Joseph Smith and others (including one of our ancestors for a short time) were held incarcerated from December to April.

Liberty Jail

 Later, we visited the Independence visitor's center and viewed an amazing showing of bronze statues depicting scenes from Christ's life.

Independence visitor's center with the Christus 

Bronze statues

Lazarus - resurrected
Lazarus' resurrection - I LOVE the expressions on their faces - they are exquisite!
I don't think that this one really needs an explanation.  It was very moving. 

"How oft I would have gathered you - as a hen gathers her chicks"
Christ walking on water.  The artist did SUCH a great job - his hair was blowing back, his clothes pinned against his body and billowing back.  I loved this one. 
Christ healing the leper.  I loved the expression in this statue.  So much is said - the gratitude and surprise. 

The long car ride
We hopped back in the car, and ended up that evening at my brother and sister in law's home.

We attended church with them on Sunday - their Spanish branch (the church meetings were in Spanish). That was fun, and I was grateful that I speak spanish! And generally enjoyed visiting and catching up. Unfortunately, my sister in law saw that I had brought the Hunger Games book for my husband to read, and mentioned that she had the last one. While I probably should have visited more, I really enjoyed finishing up that series...and so did my husband!

Posing for pictures - naughty kids

Posing for pictures - nice kids

Monday morning we piled back into the car with my mom, and we headed to Illinois. We drove through a downpour - a major one that had me white knuckled (while my husband slept) and finally arrived in Carthage Illinois. There, we visited Carthage Jail, where the prophet Joseph Smith was martyred.

Joseph and his brother Hyrum traveled to Carthage and were held with a few others here in this room.

The jail was stormed by a mob, and shots came through the door which instantly killed Hyrum who was trying to hold the door shut. Joseph was shot twice from the mob at the door, as well as through the window from a mob outside, and fell to his death from this window.

As we visited these sites, I was impressed again that Joseph Smith was truly a prophet of God. He was called of God to restore the true gospel of Jesus Christ upon the earth. He saw God and Jesus Christ as a young boy, and despite the trials and tribulations which he endured for the rest of his life, he remained true and steadfast - eventually giving his life for what he believed.

"The world can use these words. I know this now. Every man gives his life for what he believes. Every woman gives her life for what she believes. Sometimes people believe in little or nothing, and yet they give their lives to that little or nothing. One life is all we have, and we live it as we believe in living it and then it's gone. But to surrender what you are and live without belief is more terrible than dying - even more terrible than dying young." Joan of Arc
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