Anyway, this family has been on a roller coaster of emotions for a year as they were shuttled from one hospital to another and had insurance battles in the middle of everything. As Pat talked to the mom we realized that it may be another "not so coincidental moment" since we can really relate to the 'roller coaster emotional thing' after all that Emily went through before we came on our mission.
P.S. The building in the picture is not the hospital. It is the U. S. Steel skyscraper and a major downtown landmark. UPMC has it's administrative headquarters there.
The Wednesday night before Thanksgiving we went on a visit with Elder Hartman and Elder Sorenson to Denise, a black single sister. She is less active in the church---but not in her testimony of the gospel. She herself is elderly and now takes care of an elderly mother in her home and tends two small granddaughters as well, so she can't often get to church. We asked her to tell us about her conversion to the church and what an amazing story we heard. She said she had grown up going to the Baptist church and as a young woman had severe intestinal problems. This caused her to have some surgeries and be hospitalized for several months. During the whole time that she was in the hospital, her pastor did not visit her and told her he didn't make hospital calls. When she regained her health she began thinking about searching for a new church. She had somehow been given a Book of Mormon at one time and began studying the Bible using the
Thanksgiving morning we went to watch the 1st and 7th Wards "turkey bowl". The highlight was watching the two sister missionaries play with the members and Elders. One of the sisters made a "miracle catch" that Jim is still talking about. He said he wished BYU receivers could play as well. The real miracle was that Pat actually got a picture of it!!
On Saturday we drove to the Columbus Temple with another couple from the ward. Many of the youth and leaders were there to do baptisms for the dead. It is a very small temple, but very beautiful and we had a really memorable time there. It is three and a half hours away so it was a long day trip, but we were glad to be able to go.
The next closest temple to us is Washington D.C. and we hope to get there before our mission ends. The Philadelphia temple will be completed in 2016, but we are not sure just when.