Greetings Brothers, I hope this finds each of you well and excited about the pioneer spirit that you all possess. It was a sad day when, due to COVID-19 we had to postpone this year’s encampment in Rexburg Idaho. Hopefully, and I have all hope that we will, next year meet in Rexburg for the 2021 encampment. I look forward to that week and pray that it will happen. Martell Grover and his team have put a lot of time and effort into making next year’s encampment a successful and enjoyable event for everyone. Without an encampment this year our president Wayne Hinton was left with a dilemma, where and when to swear in his replacement as president of the SUP. The decision was made that on the same week that the encampment would have been held that Wayne would swear in his replacement and pass the torch.
With that said, on Wednesday September 16th at the board meeting Wayne swore me in and passed the torch. This is a very humbling position for me to be in. For each of you to put your trust in me to lead an organization that honors our Pioneer Heritage is overwhelming. I look forward to getting to know each of you better over the next year, visiting your chapters and sharing in treks. With the torch being passed to me I guess you could say that I will do my best not to drop the torch and light the place on fire. Larry Gibson from the Timpanogos Chapter was elected as the president elect and was sworn in at the same time. Larry is a great person and leader and will bring value to our organization. I am looking forward to working Larry as president elect and Wayne as past president.
By reading and studying the pioneers from the past we can gain strength to help us through the hard times we face. What would our lives be like if those that went before us did not keep journals that told us of their struggles, successes and their testimonies? I think our lives would have a black hole that we would be unable to fill. Thankfully many journals were kept and testimonies were borne for us to gain strength from. What will your family know about you in 100 years? Will a great great grandson who is struggling with his testimony or the decision to serve a mission know that you knew the Church was true and that the Lord lives? Each of us has the same obligation as the pioneers of the past to share our testimony and strength with those who follow us.
Have a great week, embrace your past and share your story. Be “PIONEER STRONG”
Brad Clayton – National President