It has been 4 years since the last Moroni's Quest. Last time we were tribe leaders and this year we were at the right place at the right time. Mark's assignment on the High Council was to be over photography and help with sound and since I am the wife of a guy in charge I was able to "partake" another time. Not only was I able to go, but I was one of the main (I say that lightly) photographers and ended up taking over 1000 pictures. I only have 57 posted here. There were close to 43 re-enactments and I have focused on some of the main ones.
This first picture was taken on Sunday after church just minutes before it rained.
I thought this picture was a good beginning for this wonderful journey and opportunity of a lifetime.
Everybody met at the Mountain View church to gather in their tribes, take a few tribe pictures and eat breakfast before heading to this picturesque spot to begin their journey.
Tribes consisted of tribe leader (husband & wife) along with 8 tribe members from various wards. Here they had to build travois to carry their belongings for the day while traveling to the promised land (camp site).
The first re-enactment also took place here. Nephi speaking before embarking on their journey.
" I, Nephi, will show unto you that the tender mercies of the Lord are over all those whom he hath chosen, because of their faith, to make them mighty even unto the power of deliverance."
" And we did take our family and our provisions and did journey into the wilderness".
There were close to 250 youth and over 100 adults participating this year from tribe leaders to photographers to cooks to ward camp specialists to costumes and props to make-up and sound to directors of the re-enactments....the list goes on and on.
After each re-enactment everybody met with their tribe to discuss what they learned and how they could apply it to their lives.
Onward they go!
"And I, Nephi, and my brethren, took our journey back to the land of Jerusalem."
Trying to get the Brass Plates.
"And behold, Laban was angry and thrust Laman out from his presence: "Thou art a robber, and I will slay thee".
At this point the kids will receive their journals and leather covered Book of Mormon.
There were different combinations of youth singing songs they had learned in previous weeks that went along with some re-enactments. This is a group of young men from one of the wards singing, "I Will Go and Do".
Behold I have dreamed a dream; or in other words I have seen a vision.
Will you be tempted by the worldly things for temporary happiness or....
partake of the Tree of Life which leads to eternal happiness?
In this Tree of Life are all the Bishops dressed in white.
"And it came to pass that as my father arose in the morning, and went forth to the tent door, to his great astonishment he beheld upon the ground a round ball of curious workmanship; and it was of fine brass. And within the ball were two spindles; and the one pointing the way wither we should go into the wilderness."
"And....I Nephi, did go up into the top of the mountain, according to the directions which were given upon the ball".
"And it came to pass that I did slay wild beasts, insomuch that I did obtain food for our families."
"Thou shalt construct a ship, after the manner which I shall show thee, that I may carry thy people across these waters."
"And it came to pass that after my father, Lehi, had spoken unto all his household, according to the feelings of his heart and the spirit of the Lord which was in him, he waxed old. And it came to pass that he died, and was buried."
There were quite a few "battles'. The kids loved these.
My favorite one from last time was the Anti-Nephi-Lehi battle. This is not that battle but when that re-enactment happened this is how it was orchestrated : Lamanites fall upon the Anti-Nephi-Lehi's and slay many before they become softened and repent. The Lamanites will not be told that their opponents are Anti-Nephi-Lehi's- just that these are enemies and they must kill as many as possible in the time given. The Anti-Nephi-Lehi's will have no weapons (because they are buried) and will not fight, but when the Lamanites "fall upon them" they will fall to their knees and pray. The beating of a drum begins.
Emotional to say the least when you are participating.
"Therefore, I would that ye should be steadfast and immoveable, always abounding in good works, the Christ, the Lord Omnipotent, may seal you his, that ye may be brought to heaven, that ye may have everlasting salvation and eternal life, through the wisdom, and power, and justice, and mercy of him who created all things, in heaven and earth, who is God above all. Amen."
"Touch me not, for God shall smite you if ye lay your hands upon me, for I have not delivered the message which the Lord sent me to deliver; therefore, God will not suffer that I should be destroyed at this time".
Speaking to King Noah...
"And in that day ye shall be hunted, and ye shall be taken by the hand of your enemies, and ye shall suffer, as I suffer, the pains of death by fire."
" Thus God executeth vengeance upon those that destroy his people. O God, receive my soul."
The props were great. Look at those arms from the story of Ammon and King Lamoni.
" In memory of our God, our religion, and freedom, our peace, our wives and our children."
Amalackiah and Lamanites try to attack the Nephites behind the fortification. The Nephites are attacking with water. This is a favorite activity when it is hot, which it was.
Ok, this was a favorite re-enactment. See me? I am in the blue/green outfit. This is how it played out. There were 18 mothers I believe that were at Moroni's Quest in some capacity that had sons who were there as well. We, the mothers, were given a song to learn that was written just for this scene as we send off our Strippling Warriors to battle. We were behind the stage while the boys were called up one by one to participate in this scene, not knowing what would happen.
"Now they never had fought, yet they did not fear death; and they did think more upon the liberty of their fathers than they did upon their lives; yea, they had been taught by their mothers, that if they did not doubt, God would deliver them."
"And they rehearsed unto me the words of their mothers, saying: We do not doubt our mothers knew it."
At that point us, the mothers, enter the stage and sing the song we had memorized. After we finished the song we put a headband on our son's head before "going to battle" and gave them a letter that we wrote them. There were lots of tears and emotion on that stage.
Here is Neal reading his letter.
After the battle with the Strippling Warriors.
Tribe gathering time to discuss the re-enactment that just occurred.
If you only knew what these two boys were feeling and seeing.
" Behold, I am Jesus Christ, whom the prophets testified shall come into the world".
He walked among us for over 2 hours while we all had the opportunity to embrace Him.
No words can explain what we all felt.
"And it came to pass that when Jesus had made and end of these sayings, he touched with his hand the disciples whom he had chosen, one by one, even until he had touched them all, and spake unto them as he touched them."
"And the multitude heard not the words which he spake, therefore they did not bear record; but the disciples bare record that he gave them power to give the Holy Ghost, And I will show unto you hereafter that this record is true."
Randy and Jana. They headed up Moroni's Quest under the direction of the Stake Presidency and did a great job which is an understatement. They have spent the last year and half totally consumed by this endeavor.
The 24 tribe leader couples kneeling in prayer. Everybody knelt in prayer before each meal and the beginning & ending of each day. You say the word prayer and everybody drops to their knees. One of the many sweet moments over the 3 1/2 days spent together.
The last battle where many more of the Lamanites and Nephites were killed except a few including Mormon and Moroni.
"Behold, I Moroni, do finish the record of my father Mormon."
"Therefore I will write and hide up these records in the earth."
" For I am alone. My father and all my kinsfolk hath been slain in battle, and I have not friends nor whither to go." .....and I, Moroni, will not deny Christ."
" He called me by name, and said unto me that he was a messenger sent from the presence of God to me, and that his name was Moroni: that God had a work for me to do: and that my name should be had for good and evil among all nations, kindreds, and tongues, or that it should be both good and evil spoken of all people."
"The Book of Mormon is the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man will get nearer to God by abiding by it's precepts, than by any other book."
Leavitt Ward youth and leaders.
I really do love the Leavitt Ward!
Our ward had 7 of the 24 tribe leader couples at Moroni's Quest and you would love to have any of these great people teach your children.
Mark, Michelle, and I were together for the last Moroni's Quest and this year we were able to spend it with Neal.
We will never forget, ever, what we felt at Moroni's Quest.