The Sacred Grove

Back when I was a young new convert in my 20s, my husband Josh and I would daydream of someday taking a family trip to see all the historic sites of Church History. It’s pretty crazy to think that we have fulfilled a lot of those daydreams!

Ever since I first watched The Restoration, I was fascinated with the tale of Joseph Smith as a young boy, growing up on a farm in Western New York, searching for meaning in the Scriptures. Never did I dream that we would end up moving all over the country at various times within hours of these sacred places: The Kirtland Temple, The Priesthood Restoration Site, The Hill Cumorah, and The Sacred Grove.

I am pretty sure something happened to me at the Kirtland Temple in 2013. I wasn’t expecting much, but as our small tour group was invited to sing The Spirit of God in the same place that it was sung the first time, it was as if the Spirit of Elijah planted itself in my heart and followed me from that point on.

Last weekend my little family and I took a trip up to Palmyra, New York to see the Hill Cumorah pageant and visit the sacred sites. As hard as it was to get moments of quiet reflection with three small girls, I was able to feel the sacredness of the Grove and the Smith Farm. Even the photos I took seemed to capture the ethereal nature of it.

The Hill Cumorah pageant was really a magnificent production. The kids loved it! It really brought The Book of Mormon to life for them.

This was kind of a hard phase to bring our youngest, Abby, because she didn’t want to sit still. I spent a good portion of the time just chasing her around until she got tired out. It’s hard to be that upset though, since she is always so happy!

Overall, it was good to spend time with the people I love the most. I have always wanted to make this a yearly tradition. We will have to see if it will be worth it next year, or maybe we will have to make it a tradition when the kids are a little older. I hope they grow up and remember these trips!


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