Missions are Fun

Preston Temple photo taken 21 Nov. 2010

A missionary is someone who leaves his or her home for a little while so others can have their families forever.

Curious about Mormons? Go to the source and find real people at mormon.org--read what they believe and have live chats if you wish! (an official Church website)

Or, go to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, official web site: lds.org.

Note: The Blain's England Manchester Mission blog is a personal blog that is not endorsed, approved, or sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Our Mission Scriptures

Our Mission Scriptures:

"Oh, that I were an angel, and could have the wish of mine heart . . . Yea, I would declare unto every soul, as with the voice of thunder, repentance and the plan of redemption, that they should repent and come unto our God, that there might not be more sorrow upon all the face of the earth." Alma 29:1-2 (Book of Mormon)

" . . . be ye steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord." 1 Corinthians 15:58 (Bible)

Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Year's Wish and More Castles

 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature; old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.  2 Corinthians 5:17

I know, it is out with the old and in with the new as 2011 begins, but old things are intriguing.  What was it like for the generations that lived before us?  Thinking of the people in the 'olden' days makes me wonder about people in other lands presently living much the same as in medieval times.  Many people in the world still do not live as we do in comfort and relative safety.  People still suffer from lack of food, of warm and comfortable shelter, modern conveniences, and enough clothing to cover them.  Some have the same tools used thousands of years ago and lack education to know of ways to improve their circumstances.  A large number of people have no knowledge of God and thus have no means of having hope for a better future.

My wish for this new year would be for all of us fortunate folks to keep the deprived persons of the world in our awareness and prayers as this new year begins and progresses.  Our gratitude for all we have will certainly increase, and the motivation to reach out to others in need will be ever present in our hearts.  Just think how Christ changed the world with love and kindness in just a few short years of his ministry!  A miracle!  One small act of kindness by everyone in the world would have the power to make this new year the year that changed the world.
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Below are pictures we were lucky enough to catch of Rhuddlan Castle as the sun was setting around 4 p.m.  The castle grounds are closed in the winter months, but you can see it is an imposing figure on the bank of the river.

Rhuddlan castle-1086.  'Rhudd' is the old Welsh word for 'red' and 'glan' means 'bank'.  The Normans left us with 'roe', a word derived from the French 'le rous.' meaning redhead.  'Roeland' is first mentioned in 1086 but by 1277 it was known as Rhuddlan and Edward I's chose location for a mighty scary castle.

For centuries, Rhuddlan had been a fiercely contested strategic location leading to much bloodshed.  Edward's muscle power triumphed long enough to build a muscle-bound symmetrical castle, showcasing the latest in 'walls-within-wall' technology.  Edward I needed access to the sea to keep his castle supplied, so he diverted the River Clywd for over 2 miles to provide a deep-water channel for ships.  The remains of a defended rive gate still exist in the outer ring of the walls.  The castle also played a seminal role in Welsh history:  it was here that a new system of English government was established over much of Wales by the Statute of Rhuddlan (1284) - a settlement that lasted until the Act of Union in 1536.  After the Civil War the castle was rendered untenable - hence its present condition.

Castell Bodelwyddan Castle-19th Century
Bodelwyddan Castle is a Victorian county house which holds a treasure trove of art and heritage that brings the 19th century back to life.  'Castell' is the Welsh spelling.  Everything in Wales has the Welsh language and English translation.
"We have sheep on the castle grounds," was what I heard the security guard reporting on his walkie talkie.  I wonder if this has been an ongoing problem for a century?

You have to admit the sheep lend an idyllic charm to the scene
The Williams family came to Bodelwyddan Hall, as it was known, in the 1690's and the last of the family lived here until the late nineteenth century.  The historic home, museum, and art gallery are part of the newer part of the castle.

During the First World War, the Castle was used as an Officers Mess and recuperation centre.  At this time the ground were used for training purposes and you can still see the practice trenches in the parkland today.

From 1920-1982, the Castle was home to Lowther College.  It was a leading public girls' school.  Many weddings, festivals, and activities are held most of the year in this lovely atmosphere.

More castle history and pictures can be found on www.cadw.wales.gov.uk and www.bodelywyddan-castle.co.uk.  For Conway, try www.conwytowncouncil.gov.uk.

An example of the Welsh language:

'Castell a tref gaerog' means 'Conwy castle & walled town'.  'Safle treftadaeth y byd' means 'A wold heritage site'.

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