Center Place Reunion

Jul/Aug/Sep 2016

Once again the Center Place Reunion is over. Bill and Terry both felt that it was a very good week, even though we were few in number (thirty people had signed up for the event prior to the opening of registration on Sunday afternoon). Junior High Camp was taking place in Blackgum, Oklahoma, at the same time, so we missed many of our youth and those who served there as camp leaders. We trust that the Junior High camp was a great one.

Each morning the reunion started at 8:15 AM with a prayer service led by the Order of Patriarchs. I give thanks to Patriarchs Carl VunCannon, Jr., Pete Petentler, Fred Williams, and Bill McCurry who faithfully provided the ministry for these services. The reunion was blessed by a Spirit-filled message given through Brother Carl during the last service.

That daily event was followed by a class with Apostle Don Burnett as the teacher. Don used a small book by Verneil Simmons, called Zenos and the Parable of the Olive Tree, which is based upon the parable as found in the book of Jacob. Don was able to bring into better focus the grafting and pruning of the House of Israel over the years by using the text and the use of additional scriptures. The classes had from eighteen to twenty-seven in attendance and all benefitted from the instruction and the discussions.

Around twenty people joined us for lunch each day. The meals were prepared for us by Sister Linda Burnett. A five-dollar donation was suggested for the daily meal, which many said was the best five-dollar lunch they could get anywhere.

An afternoon class was provided. Apostle Terry Patience used a book by Richard J. Foster called Celebration of Discipline, The Path to Spiritual Growth. The book covers twelve different areas of our spiritual life. The discussions on prayer, fasting, simplicity, submission, and worship seemed to spark the most discussion. It was agreed that, if we as a people, could implement the disciplines, we would become a people better prepared for Zion, as the author’s suggestions were Kingdom-building principles.

We had four young people attending the reunion. They were taught by Sister B.J. Thompson, and assisted by Sisters Cheryl Ginn and Cristin Buttery. Sister Marci Damon led the youth in the morning music. Sister Jackie Howell brought her art skill to help the youth with the arts and crafts. We only had one senior high age camper, who was happy to join the adult classes. He was a great participant.

Starting on Sunday night, we had five evening services. Our speakers were President Fred Larsen, President Ralph Damon, Bishop Kevin Romer, and Elder Alex VunCannon. Wednesday night was a prayer service lead by Brother Larsen. Attendance ranged from forty-two to sixty-nine. The spoken word was as expected, uplifting, as we considered the daily reunion themes.

After the service on Monday, a campfire was held indoors due to the excessive heat. It was directed by Sister Ardyce Nordeen.

We were very thankful for the many other people who helped out during the week, such as the deacons, the sound crews, the Livestream crews, the food clean up volunteers, the pianist, presiders for the services, priesthood for service prayers, and many more. We were also blessed with the worship centers and signage by Sister Judith Deacon.

Just like last year, we commented on how well everyone pitched in to make this a successful, peaceful, and spiritual reunion. We both hope that everyone who participated came away with a greater spiritual strength, an increase in knowledge about our Church and our Savior, and with our friendships deepened.

So, until we meet again, God bless. We hope to see you and others here next year. Maybe we will get our numbers up to the 200 to 300 as seen in years gone by. Thank you all!