I’ve been tied up with choir practice for a special church event that takes place twice a year. This weekend, we finished practices and sang.

LDS congregations are geographically based. They are called “wards” or “branches,” depending on the number of members therein. I live within a branch. Several congregations are grouped into an entity called a “stake.” A stake is similar in concept to a Catholic diocese. My stake is the Payson Arizona Stake.

Twice a year, members forego holding the usual weekly worship services and instead, attend “stake conference,” where we have a Saturday evening and a Sunday morning meeting. We listen to talks from our local leaders as well as from visitors from the mission and temple that pertain to us. We are in the Scottsdale Arizona Mission, and the Mesa Arizona Temple district. From time to time, we have visiting authorities from church headquarters in Utah.

A temporary stake choir made up of volunteers sings at each of the general meetings. That’s what I participated in. Our director is an excellent musician, as is our accompanist. It was a real joy for me to sing with all those who joined the choir.

I traveled the 20 miles to Payson on both days. Then today I attended a luncheon in town to thank the volunteers who worked so hard to to bring off the Payson Book Festival. We had a great time.

Left to right: Connie Cockrell, Payson Book Festival Director, and Marie Fasano, Volunteer Coordinator.

Some of the Payson Book Festival volunteers.

More volunteers.

I don’t mind the travel time for such good causes.


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