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)

Monday, August 1, 2011

Last Days in Lovely Darwen and Seeing the Tower

Wherefore, I give unto them a commandment, saying thus:  Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, with all thy might, mind, and strength; and in the name of Jesus Christ thous shalt serve him.  Thou shalt love they neighbor as thyself. . . . Thou shalt thank the Lord thy God in all things.  Thou shalt offer a sacrifice unto the Lord thy God in righteousness, even that of a broken heart and a contrite spirit.  Doctrine and Covenants 59:5-8

We have tried to show our love by the service we have been able to do on this mission.  We know we fall short of all we'd like to do and missed things we should have done.  What matters is we did the best we could.  We DO love the Lord and thank him for this marvelous experience to "love our neighbors."  They have blessed us far more than we have helped them.

The Internet goes down tomorrow.  I shall try to post the last on this blog until we return home to report the last leg of our Ireland, Yorkshire, and Scotland explore.  Plans are to attend our last Sacrament Meetings in Newcastle-Under-Lyme and Stoke-on-Trent wards to see the lovely folks in those wards one last time.

We finally made it to Darwen Tower that had beckened to us from the first day we arrived in this area.  A sunny day came and we ventured up for a stress relief as I was getting to the stage of standing in the middle of the room being totally unproductive by feeling overwhelmed and not knowing where to begin organizing for the move.  The little time it took to hike up to the tower probably saved a lot of time in the moving process in the long run.
The tower with the new dome
It isn't the first, nor the only such landmark; all sorts of monuments flourish on our Pennine hills. There's the tower on Rivington Pike, the Peel monument near Bury, the Snowden memorial above Colne, the tower on the fells above Abbeystead and, of ancient and unknown origin, the tall structures on Gragareth, Lancashire's highest mountain. This urge to build something on the nearest hill surfaced again in Darwen just over one hundred years ago. On one level it was a gesture of loyalty to a monarch celebrating her sixtieth year on the throne, but on another it was a gesture that struck at the very thing that monarchy is all about: the ownership of land and the power and privileges that go with it
About three months before we arrived in Darwen, a strong wind storm once again took the top of the tower off.  It was closed for a while to clean things up and secure the safety of the area so people could climb the tower once again.  The other missionaries told us they heard it was open again, so we were lucky enough to climb the tower before we left England.

New clip:  GALES have blown the dome off the top of Darwen Tower.  The 85-foot landmark was stripped of its crowning glory by gusts of up to 80mph overnight.
The octagonal Jubilee Tower (generally called Darwen Tower) on Beacon Hill overlooking the town of Darwen in Lancashire, England, was completed in 1898 to commemorate Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee and also to celebrate the victory of the local people for the right to access the moor. It was opened to the public on 24 September 1898.  85 feet (25.9 m) in height, walkers can climb to the top via the internal staircase to admire the views of North Yorkshire, Morecambe Bay, Blackpool Tower, Cumbria, the Isle of Man, North Wales, Derbyshire elsewhere in Lancashire, and surrounding moorland.

Moor (more) ( : History: Packmen, peddlers, farmers and labourers used tracks and moorland paths to go about their business. In the 1870s the Lord of the manor of Over Darwen, the Reverend William Arthur Duckworth, blocked ancient rights of way preventing access to the moor even though he was an absentee landlord. Game rights were a valuable commodity and Duckworth did not wish to have his land devalued by trespassers on the moors. William Thomas Ashton, manager of Eccles Shorrock's mines at Dogshaw Clough and Entwistle Moss used the moorland footpaths well to deliver coal to farmers and other customers. Whenever Duckworth's gamekeepers blocked his way Ashton cleared the paths. The struggle led to the courts where Duckworth lost and in September 1896 people resumed walking the moorland footpaths and, as Ashton died in 1884, his sons lead a procession onto the moors in celebration.

There is a stone spiral staircase to the first level and slightly above, followed by a smaller metal spiral staircase which leads to the very top. Wind speeds can be very high at the top of the tower, and often mist below will obscure the surrounding views. In 1947 the original wooden turret built by a crew including apprentice Ernest Brooks of Darwen (who later built the Lytch Gate at Sunnyhurst Wood) on top of the tower was blown off in a gale and was not replaced until 1971 when the tower was crowned once again with a glass dome paid for mainly by fund raising by local people. The tower was closed to the public for 19 months due to being deemed unsafe for use.
How the tower looks now.  Maybe it just wasn't meant to have a dome.  We enjoyed climbing to the top and looking out over the countryside in all directions.

I just spend several hours working on the post to show you the rest of this trip, but the server crashed and lost everything!!  So, you may just have to wait to see the rest of this fantastic day.  Sorry.  I'm hoping the Internet company hasn't done what they did last time and cut us off several days early!  We shall see . . .  I'll see how many photos I can attempt to add back on.

It was a gorgeous hike up
War memorial in the park at the base of the hike
Carved wooden creatures in the park
On the trail through the park

Interesting flowers along the way

One of the trails up overlooking Darwen--we could see our place

These falls are advertised as being 60 feet
On the trail

This looks a long way up as we are trudging along
Elder Blain is standing with a lady overlooking the landscape as I walk up this trail
Pretty color of rock on the way up

Overlooking the land from the tower
More stairs like in the castles

Bouquet for you
Heading down


  1. Very nice pictures! Congrats on the completion of another mission. I know you will be missed. Can't wait until you return home!

  2. Ernest Brooks who helped with the tower and built Sunny Hurst gate was my Great Granddad. I have a photo of him on my Google page if you want to use it.