Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Birthplace of Joseph Smith

So, I enjoyed my last post considering the circumstances. On our trip to the North East we realized that we were staying the night 10 minutes away from Sharon, Vermont - birthplace of Joseph Smith. For those interested (which is probably all but two people who read this) I am posting the other pictures, besides the two from the previous blog, to let you see what it is like for those who have not been to the site. Of course, I am sure it is in the Ensign once a year or something but whatever.

You pretty much take back farm roads to get to the entrance and then you enter these gates (not the pearly gates, but still nice) and go up this beautiful drive which is obviously aligned with these trees.

This is some of the writing on two of the sides of the monument.

The monument is not the "actual" birthplace. Just over my right shoulder there is a little grove of trees and there is a small stone with a marker on it where they believe the foundation of the original home stood.

The monument is a solid piece of granite which is 37 1/2 feet tall (age of Joseph Smith at death???) (work with me here and adjust the figures accordingly). There is a neat story about how they built the monument transported the large piece of stone to the site (up steep hills), prayer was involved, etc.

There are two buildings on the site that you can take the tour. We didn't really want to take the tour because we had to travel a distance from Vermont and really just wanted to stop by and take a picture. But the missionary was nice and did a mini tour quickly. There are paintings of past prophets, etc. Stuff I am sure everyone has seen before. They had the interesting diagram showing the lineage from _____ which ascended 8 Presidents (including both H. & W. Bush) and also Joseph Smith.

Around the site there is choir music from "the" M.T.C. piped in from the forest. Very pretty lawn. Reverent, outdoor setting. We were just walking around the site and Sister X approached us and asked if we wanted the tour and we said no, but thanks, we were just quickly stopping by. Well, I felt bad so we did the mini tour. Very interesting how the church tried to purchase as much of the original farm land (160 acres) and dedicated the site. The Prophet came to dedicate the site all from the 1800's which is pretty amazing. So we got to the "end" of the tour and it was kind of awkward because obviously the missionary wanted to take the opportunity to "teach us about the church." [They had a baptism tank right outside. Kidding.] So there were pamphlets that we could take about the church, etc. We really didn't tell her why we were there or how much we knew about the church. She kind of started handing us stuff so then I told her I was actually a Bishop of a church in Texas and we didn't have to take as many pamphlets. Kidding.

Just wanted to let everyone know that their 10% is being put to good use there and all of you would enjoy the experience. I did have one question when I left there when I thought about posting the pictures in the previous blog.
Does it make me more Mormon than ya'll because I have visited this site and you haven't.



Michelle Pyne said...

You are so fortunate to vacation in New England in the fall! I really enjoyed seeing the pictures of Joseph Smith's birthplace! It's one site I have not yet visited. Thanks to you, I can almost claim that I've been there.

Anonymous said...

I've never been there either...did you tell the sister that your name is Mr. Relief Society?

Brian said...

No it doesn't make you more Mormon than me, it makes you more Mormon than you think you are....

Which is pretty good.

steven said...

excellent recap. you are not any more mormon than the next guy but maybe this counts as a "free pass" for the next couple of years. if i were incharge, i would cut you a break for your sincere effort.

thanks for the pictures

Emma said...

I haven't been there yet. Thanks for sharing the pictures and your experience!

Jodie Haney said...

I agree with said Ensign and reverent.