Wednesday, August 8, 2012

A Visitor From Arizona

The Newport Temple of the
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
My friend Dianna has been here over the past weekend, visiting from Arizona.  We had to do a few tourist-y things while she was here, like seeing the Newport LDS Temple grounds.  I know that may not sound like a tourist-y thing to many of you folks, but it was special to us.

Dianna got to see tide pools at Doheny State Beach, play at Dana Point, see steel drum and Calypso dance performers in a Caribbean Dance Showcase, attend several dances, workshops and other fun activities as part of her visit.
My friend Dianna
Dianna came from Arizona to attend the Orange County Singles Conference 2012, titled "Pursue Your Path to Happiness", which was sponsored by the Orange County Singles Correlation Council comprised of all 16 stakes in the Orange County, California area of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Last year their attendance was circa 1,200.  [I'm not sure what the head count was this past weekend, but I'm sure it was close, if not more.]  According to several sources, this conference is the largest, best, and most well-organized of all the LDS singles conferences throughout the United States.

I was able to attend Sunday services presided over by Elder Richard J. Maynes, of the Presidency of the Seventy.  (That means he's one of the General Authorities of our Church.)

Elder Richard J. Maynes
First Quorum of the Seventy
Elder Maynes was called to the First Quorum of the Seventy on March 31, 2001.  A father and grandfather, and former President of the Mexico Monterrey Mission (1989-1992), he was a delightful speaker.

The music was wonderful
I was a bad girl and snapped this photo during a musical number in the middle of the Sunday services.  They have some outstanding musical talent in the hosting ward, the Lake Ward - a singles congregation of the Church in Irvine, California.  The soloist and musicians (they had a chamber group accompanying the choir, together with the piano), were of professional caliber, and the music they performed was also written by a member of the group.  It was delightful.

Dining with the singles
A delicious lunch was served to about 600+ very hungry people in record time.  Here (above) is a glimpse of a small part of the crowd from where I was sitting.  The group that hosts this conference has years of experience and really had this handling of large crowds down to a science.

Inside the Lake Ward Building

Here is a picture of my friend Dianna inside the church building.  I believe the painting is one of Carl Bloch's famous paintings of the Saviour.  I love those old Biblical paintings.

This is a huge regional center, with two large chapels, one at each end, and other large meeting areas, surrounded by pine trees.  There aren't many of these large LDS churches in the world, and I was unprepared for the size of it.  

To my total surprise, an old friend, someone Dianna and I grew up with in the old Phoenix East Stake 5th Ward, was there.  He surprised me with a big hug.  It was good to see him!  He also lives in Arizona and had flown out for the conference.

This is Danny (below).  He's a great guy, ladies.

Our friend "Lance" Boyle
 Dianna's visit would not have been complete without a picture of her with a palm tree.  This is especially for our friend Scott, in Indiana - because he loves palm trees of all kinds and gets a little weird about living in the Midwest where there are none.

Just for you, Scootles::

And Finally - A Palm Tree - for Scott
We had a nice visit.  It was good seeing old friends again.

If you would like more information on upcoming regional activities of the Orange County California LDS 31+ Singles, just visit

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1 comment:

Scootles said...

Looks like that one is behind the Newport Beach chapel next to the temple.
Am I right?