I have been "Missing in Action" lately here on this blog. I haven't been sitting back and eating bonbons. Instead, I have been living life, helping Rooster Senior with his end-of-the-semester projects and homework, and witnessing some modern-day history. On March 27th of this year, the members of our Young Single Adult ward, along with 6 other wards based in the Raintree Commons were given a bit of news. Their home-away-from-home would become a 2nd MTC (Missionary Training Center) beginning May 1st. This means that everyone....I mean everyone is moving out...moving away...and moving on to make way for these newly called Missionaries.
Now before some of you think that this is unfair.....just remember that (the end of the semester) and most of the rental contracts end on April 27th. At the end of a semester a majority of these tremendous students traditionally move out...move home....and move on with life in general. So yes, some folks were inconvenienced, but most already had plans to relocate.
And so the Exodus begins. There have been meetings with our Young Single Adult (YSA) Ward Council, planning with the Relief Society and Elder's Quorum, with extra efforts from Visiting Teachers and Home Teachers to ensure everyone has a place to land and help moving there. If you have ever moved one family....multiply that effort by nearly 200 and you will know what this experience is like. We have even made available our own 'Winter Quarters' for those YSA's who are in flux. By April 27th, the members of our YSA ward...and a piece of heart will be gone.
This next Sunday will be the last block of meetings for our ward. Everyone will be released, including the Bishopric and the ward essentially will be dissolved. Reportedly the MTC will inhabit Raintree and Wyview apartments for approximately 2 years.
Sooooo, the Little Red Hen has put on her own thinking cap.....which is really a dangerous thing. As the media coverage states, the Missionaries will not only live on these campus', but will also receive their training here.......I tried to imagine how the training and feeding part would happen. I could see the living and laundry part already, but the other would be a massive undertaking. Each apartment has 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms along with a an open floor plan for a livingroom/kitchen combination. There is also a laundry room for all the current residents. (Our Ward alone is made up of 24 Apartments and there are 6 Wards in this complex)
|Image Courtesy of Raintreeapt.com|
Soooooo, where could everything take place? Well, Wyview (across the street) has a Chapel located on it's campus....that could be very helpful for Missionaries I would venture. However, there is a need for classrooms, large dining area(s), etc. So, I took a few pictures and have a few thoughts on the matter (and that is all they are....as the Church has a plan to address any and all issues here without the my uninspired input).
This is a view of 2 buildings on the West side of the complex.
Standing from the Balcony of one the above Apartment buildings, I took these 3 shots from right to left....of an enormous parking lot. Think about it, these missionaries will not need any parking space. Temporary buildings could be established here for teaching and dining.
The current clubhouse can manage one YSA ward at a time for things like Ward Prayer and a "Break-the-Fast" meal, but not the entire complex. I am sure this building will be used however for important functions. It has folding tables and chairs, a loft, a kitchen without appliances (but has a small sink) and some small office areas that Bishops have used for interviews.
Each Stairwell leads to 6 different apartments (on 3 floors) on the front and back sides of the building. Missionaries will live (and most likely study) in close proximity without having to travel far.
As with any change, there are 'rumors' about what will happen. Some rumors are that the Hot Tub will be taken completely out, others are that the pool will be covered for 2 years. In my view, who knows and really who cares about the pool? The Lord has a plan, and his work will roll forth.
So, as some of our newly called missionaries (some most likely from our own YSA Ward) prepare to enter the MTC in early May, it is my hope that they will find a sweetly spiritual environment in the newly called 2nd MTC. I know that our YSA Ward has certainly experienced it and have been greatly blessed by it.
As for our beloved YSA's, I will personally miss you all. As I listen to your plans for the future, I am amazed at the potential impact for good you most likely will have not only locally, but across the world. I want to thank you all for the richness that you have brought to my life.....I will miss you.
Until we meet again..........