From the Polish airport we flew to Munich where the sweetest lady, Sister Irmgard Reiser, who had persuaded us to come to Nuernberg, Germany to do a fireside for the church was waiting for us. She had bravely come by herself and we think this may have been one of the few journeys she has taken like this when she assigned herself to be the guide. We traveled from the plane to about 45 minutes on the subway to the train station where we boarded a bullet train to Nuernberg. Then a dash to the car park and a whirlwind trip through the city, whizzing past the buildings where the Nuremberg Trials after World War II occurred and on to the fireside to a church building about 25 minutes away, We raced to the rest rooms, changed quickly and devoured a lovely little dinner that the senior missionaries had prepared for us in the kitchen and dashed into the chapel about five minutes late. Whew!
They were a fun audience and we had a great time spending some time with them as a fantastic translator translated simultaneously to several people with head phones as we spoke.
It was a delight to see so many lovely people, many who were military families who were stationed there and whose husbands had been deployed for a up to a year and some who were just getting ready to be deployed. There were single moms, single women, lots of converts and some who were working for the church in the area.
Our favorite had to be the daughter of one of our best missionaries, Elder Hawkes and her darling family. They have two kids 14 months apart and had been having a ball traveling all over Europe just before he would be deployed to Afghanistan next week as a helicopter pilot. Thinking of that young man deploying to a war zone just takes my breath away but it was his lifelong dream!
Irmgard didn’t want her picture taken, but she is truly a champion. As the German Stake Relief Society President she has also served a mission as a young woman in Texas, spoke fluent English was caring for her disabled husband who served in the Viet Nam War and has three accomplished grown children. Her daughter is working at the US Embassy in Bagdad, another son is living in South Carolina and another near her in Germany. The stories that poured out of people afterward were amazing as well as heart-rending!
A senior couple, Brother and Sister Archibald (Arch’s second cousin I think) not only prepared dinner for us dinner but took us back to the most beautiful Holiday Inn we’d ever seen in Nurenberg after the fireside and then picked us up this morning for a quick walk through what must be one of the most be one of the most spectacular examples of a Medieval town in the whole world before dropping us off at the airport. Here are a few of the things we saw:
Directions to the site of the Nuernberg Trials and the buildings themselves (this is the town where Hitler held many of his rallies in a giant stadium.
The village inside the huge city wall:
An enormous fountain about the different phases of a family. We decided that the guy who sculpted it didn’t care much for family life! Interesting!
FOREVER CHRISTMAS IN GERMANY!
ENCHANTING! On to Berlin for a stop-over and then our second home: ENGLAND!