Like you, I’ve home taught my entire life. Growing up my dad was my companion, and the companion that I remember having the most influence on me. He was a great example, and really wish that him and I were companions today. I really don’t think he’s ready to trade companions anytime soon. That honor goes to my mom. Because they live in a branch of the Church, they have been assigned as Home/Visiting teachers. They live high up in the Canadian Rockies, attending church in the little ski resort town of Banff, Alberta. The two of them have traveled as much as a 150 mile round trip to Saskatchewan Crossing to fulfill their assignment, taking them over mountain passes and snowy roads. I remember my parents telling me that they were assigned a less active man who worked at the Chateau Lake Louise. They didn’t have a home address; all they had to go on was that he worked at the fancy hotel on the shores of beautiful Lake Louise. Faithfully, every month, my parents drove the many miles to the lake. They never once saw him, but always dropped off the home teaching message, cards, or goodies in the hr department at the hotel. After a number of years, without never meeting or seeing the young man, my dad felt discouraged and thought it best to stop the trips to Lake Louise. They weren’t even sure if he was receiving the messages. It was while leaving Lake Louise on another failed trip that my parents happened to notice a young lady hitch hiking on the road. You have to understand my parents, they NEVER pick up hitch hikers, but for some reason they felt prompted to pick this young lady up. As they were driving her from the lake to the town site of Lake Louise they asked her if she knew this young man. She said that she did, and that it was her boss. This gave my parents the shot in the arm that they needed to continue their “visits.” They continued for eight years, when one Sunday a young man walked into their chapel and asked for the Barkers. When he met them, and after introducing himself, the first question out of his mouth was why did you never give up on me? It was a few years later that my parents were privileged to see him kneel across an alter in the Cardston Temple and sealed to his new wife.
William Cahoon, one of the first home teachers in the Church, also has an interesting story. By the way, what was the original name of home teaching?
A) Last day of the month teachers
B) It’s always been home teaching
C) Visiting teachers
D) Ward teachers
1. C A storm
A protest was planned by individuals from Wyoming to disrupt the ground breaking ceremonies of the Billings, Montana Temple, however, due to inclement and severe traveling and weather conditions the protestors were not able to reach their destination.
Jim Pottenger. Interview by Chad S. Hawkins, 20 April 2000.
*note: Again, I’m reading too fast. It was not the temple dedication, but rather the ground breaking ceremony.
2. B A storm
With the construction completed, the dedication of the Veracruz temple was scheduled for 9 July 2000. Shortly before the dedication, Church officials learned of a large all-terrain vehicle and motorcycle rally scheduled to take place near the temple on the morning of the dedicatory services. That event, with its crowds and loud engines, was planned for location less than fifty yards from the temple grounds. Both it and the temple cornerstone ceremony were to begin at 9 A.M. Dedication organizers were concerned and wondered how to maintain the reverent feeling appropriate for placing he cornerstone of a house of the Lord. But Sunday morning, the day of the dedication, arrived with rain showers significant enough to cancel all the scheduled off-road vehicle events. Ron Weekes, media specialist of the dedication. Observed, “I know that the hand of the Lord was involved with what transpired.”
Chad S. Hawkins, The First 100 Temples (Salt Lake City: Eagle Gate, 2001), 249.