President’s Message: December 2021

Larry Gibson
-22 National President

This is a cherished time of year as we move from Thanksgiving to Christmas followed by 2022, the New Year ahead.  We look forward with anticipation.

The current year of 2021 has been a wonderful year despite all the issues that have needed special attention.  It appears we are making progress as we traverse our way through the various strains of COVID.  We so appreciate each of the Chapters regularly reaching out to our members and providing the socialization with formal meetings, treks, etc., that is needed by all.  Thank you for your many efforts.  We express on behalf of the National leadership team, our gratitude for all that each of you is doing to keep our chapters closely knit together and moving forward.

Please know that the National Organization is on a firm foundation and will continue to be as we move into 2022.  We look forward to seeing the National Board members and their companions at the upcoming Board Meeting and Christmas Dinner on December 8, 2021.  Please come and enjoy this special occasion.  Also, put on your calendar right now, April 23, 2022, the date for the 2022 National Symposium.  Remember, 2022 is the 175th Anniversary of the entering the Salt Lake Valley for the first time and the Mormon Battalion entering California.  It will be an enjoyable year of celebration and the theme for the Symposium.

Accepting the Challenge at the bottom of the President’s Message each month I was hoping to find some short on my grandmother, Edith Alice Hinton.  While doing so I ran across this little tidbit.  Keep in mind the difficulty we are having with the supply chain issues of getting products on the store shelves in our own day.  Here was her story as a little girl.

Whoever heard of Santa Claus being two or three days late in his yearly visits to the eager who have been on their best behavior for weeks in anticipation of the greatest event of the year?  We had heard of trains being late, of that matured late, of being late for school, but for Santa Claus to loiter on his way—that was unbelievable.  Yes, it really happened when I was a little girl.

I lived in the small town of Virgin, Utah, almost one hundred miles from the nearest railroad station.  All of our supplies which we did not produce on our farms and in our had to be hauled by team and covered from Milford, and it took four or five days each way to make the trip over rough roads, through canyons, and over mountains in all kinds of weather.  Sometimes loads of badly needed supplies for the stores would be delayed for days because of the snow and mud.  That was why Santa was late at least once during my childhood.  I could not understand at the time why the weather and the long haul should delay Santa Claus, because he came by reindeer and sleigh—and the more snow there was, the better it was for him.  I gradually learned, however, that Santa had to time his visits with the arrival of the loads of Christmas freight which were due at that time of the year.

When word got around that the Christmas freight hadn’t come in, and that Santa would be delayed several days, imagine the disappointment it caused!  Eventually, however, the freight came through and so did Santa.

It appears we are having similar issues in our own day and are not sure of its impact on Santa.

The focus of this season is the birth of the Christ child.  I still love that special moment in Mr. Kreuger’s Christmas when Jimmy Stewart knelt to talk with the newborn Jesus.  

It was reported that in filming that scene he required all the equipment to be operating perfectly because he said, “I have only one of these in me,” meaning that the deep and tender feelings associated with his expressions of love for Jesus could not be repeated.  It was too tender, heart-wrenching, and too sacred.  Let us strive to have those same feelings for Him always. 

As Norman Vincent Peale put it,  “Christmas waves a magic wand over the world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful.”

From all of us here at the National Headquarters, we wish you the very best Christmas season ever.

CHALLENGE:  I hope you took last month’s challenge and found 2-3 stories regarding your father’s mother to share with your family.  I found several stories about Edith Alice Hinton which I will share with my children.  This month find 2-3 stories about your mother’s father that you want to share with your children.  Write them and share them.


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