Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Handcart Family

Well, On this last day of the year, I realize that My 365 was more like a 200! But, that is OK, given the                                                  challenges of time and health, it was my best.

My favorite photo from last night was actually not the Christmas lights on Temple Square,  but, rather,  this bronze statue of a little pioneer family as they are pushing their handcart toward the Salt Lake valley.   I have seen it many times,  but it never struck me like it did last night.   Maybe it was because I had been on Temple Square for over 2 hours and I was cold.  Maybe it was the recollection of my own pioneer ancestry.    I thought of my great-great grandfather,  who was not with the original group of poneers in 1847.  He arrived in Salt lake in 1850 because he was a wagon builder.   Others needed wagons and handcarts, and so he stayed behind to build.  Nevertheless,  their family suffered many hardships as well.   I am grateful for my ancestors and others who made the treck here, for religious freedom.    I am grateful to all religious people, who fled their homelands to come to America for the freedons offered here.   It is important for all of us to stand up for those freedoms today.   It is not difficult to see them slipping away.   This is heartbreaking to me.

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