Hello, everyone! This is Katie. (: My mom asked me to write a little bit about my Trek experience, what my thoughts were about it, etc. I can honestly say that this experience has changed my life forever. My testimony of my church had definitely grown in the short amount of time I had spent up there. Sorry guys, it might be a big long. I have a lot to say.
I admit, I LOATHED the idea of camping outside in the bitter cold with nothing but my sleeping bag and a blanket ( Okay, I know that sounds spoiled, but it was REALLY cold! ). I also didn't want to have to wear these pioneer clothes for three days straight. But, my parents said it would be a good thing for me to go, so I was practically forced out the door. (:
When we first got here to Panguitch, it was a bit chilly, and I didn't have a very positive attitude. But once we got put into our own families, I could already tell that the Lord's hand was at work. I was extremely nervous to be put into this family; What if there were people I didn't like? What if nobody wanted to be my friend? Lots of different worries surrounded me before I was put into my family. I knew that the leaders had pondered and prayed about each specific youth and which unit they should go into. Once I was put into the Hyde family, I felt a sense of peace and calm wash over me. My family already cared and loved me within the first few minutes, and I could tell we were going to be close.
After we were separated into families, they gave us a certain amount of money to spend to buy our "supplies", which were carts, sleeping supplies, etc.
soon we were off:
Even though none of my close friends were in my family, it was fun to see them randomly throughout the trek:
We trekked all of our miles ( a whopping four miles ) to camp, which is usually different from a normal trek, where the group treks many more miles per day.
But the Trek which our stake was doing was a brand new idea, and very special. They came up with the idea of having a Temple Trek, where the youth would discover the importance, hard work, and love that the Pioneers had put into building our St. George LDS temple. ( I put that link in there, just if you wanted to see more info about it. ) And wow, was it neat! We had a whole bunch of different activities, learning about how the temple was built. There is so much to say about my appreciation for our Pioneers, but I can't even express it all. The last activity we had, was to actually build our own "miniature" version of the temple. We built the wood frame, and the leaders had made special tarps to put on the outside that looked specifically like the temple. Because there was NO way we could've possibly built that whole temple in one day!
Once our youth had finished the temple, we felt a great sense of happiness come over us. We had built this thing all by ourselves ( with a little bit of help of some carpenters (; ) and it was spectacular. We each had our own meetings in our wards that night, to talk about our feelings of our trek, and our feelings of building the temple. And let me say, I am NOT a crier. Ever. But I seriously could not stop crying. And if that isn't a sign that the spirit had touched me, nothing is.
I am extremely grateful for the experience I had on this Trek. I am MAKING my sister Chandi go on it, it's a must! I am also grateful for the many friends and relationships I made in this special time I was given. I am EXTREMELY grateful for the parents I have and that they made me go on this thing. It was amazing. That's all. (: -- XOXO Katie.