The Journey to Freedom

The Journey to Freedom

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Anthony's went to the beach on Sunday????????

After our 10 hour work day at the Barlow on Friday we decided to  do something totally random.  Our Stake President told us we should really see the new visitor center and visit the priesthood restoration site in Susquehanna, Pennsylvania before we go home.  This is about the time of year when the priesthood was restored.  May 15, 1829 the Aaronic priesthood was restored and then a few weeks later the Melchizedek priesthood was restored.  We had a three day weekend and we have not left the mission for personal reasons in the last 20 months so we thought this would be the perfect time.  It was a little over a 5 hour trip so we decided that we would stay over night so we could spend about three hours at the site and go out to dinner.  After we made the hotel arrangements I remembered that we had a group coming in from the Law society to use the Barlow Sunday night.  We knew we would have to hurry a little but we could still make it.  President Cooke gave us permission so we were on our way.

As we drove out at seven on Saturday morning we both felt a little guilty.  What if something went wrong or the interns needed us for something.  The further we drove the better we felt knowing that we really needed a break.  When we arrived at the site and walked in here was two other couples from our mission that had decided to do the same thing.  We love being there.  It is almost like being at the Sacred Grove.  The spirit is so strong and to see where Joseph and Oliver baptized each other was inspiring and sobering.  It is so beautiful and not to far from where Joseph and Emma were living.

This is Pennsylvania blue stone.  The church/visitor center and the walls are made out of this pretty blue stone.  

Site where the angels appeared to Joseph and Oliver. 

This was Joseph and Emma's home.  She lost their first baby here.  He died about an hour after he was born and Emma almost died as well.  This was at the same time that Martin Harris lost the 116 pages of the Book of Mormon.  70% of the Book of Mormon was translated here. 

This is a replica of the home that Emma grew up in.  The Isaac and Elizabeth Hales lived here.  They had 9 children and Emma was number 7 .  Emma was well educated.  The two homes are replicas but they are built on the foundations where the original homes were.  Joseph most likely ate here when he work for Josiah Stowell and met Emma at that time.  

Those were dating candles.  When the candle ran out the suitor had to leave.  You could adjust on the front how much candle was used so if you didn't like the guy you would make it short.  

You can see the foundation of what was probably an ice house. 

The Book of Mormon would have sat on the table under a cloth like this replica.  These pictures are inside Joseph and Emma's house. 

At the other end of the Visitor Center is the chapel for their branch.  I think it is beautiful.  I love the windows. 

The cemetery close to their home. 

In the back of these new headstones is the the original head stones that are unreadable now.  

Old restoration statue closer to the Joseph Smith home. 

This is a bridge so you can walk under the rode from the Visitor Center to the homes. 

The greenery and flowers are so beautiful 

Susquehanna River were Joseph and Oliver Cowdery were baptized. 

The water was at high flood stage when they would have been baptized so they were probably baptized in this area which is just off from the main river and more private.  

You can see Joseph Smith's home through the trees.  

We found a Texas Roadhouse.  We love this place and we haven't been to one in 20 months.  Elder Anthony and I are still licking our lips.  We haven't had a steak in that long either. 

Across the street from where we stayed in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania there is a Mall called the Wyoming Valley Mall.  They had a town called Dallas and Baltimore. I think Pennsylvania couldn't come up with original names so they just started using names from other states.  Or maybe it is the opposite.

We went to Church today in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.  We only stayed for sacrament meeting because we had to get home because we had a group using the Barlow tonight and we have to stay there while they use the building.  One of the interns told me that today in church they announced that the Anthony's had gone to the beach so they were not at church.  So I wrote in the ward Facebook page and our interns Facebook page the following, "We have been told that they announced that Elder and Sister Anthony were missing from church because they went to the beach. Let me clarify. First off we did not go to the beach. We went to Susquehanna, Pennsylvania to the see the new Priesthood Restoration site. We stayed over night and attended church today in the Wilkes- Barre Ward and drove into DC to host a BYU law event at the Barlow tonight. Hope this clarifies that we were not breaking mission rules (we had permission from the mission president) or God's laws."

 The bad part was that our Mission President was at church today.  


  1. That looks like a really fun trip, especially because you topped it off with Texas Roadhouse! That is really funny that one of your interns said you were at the beach!

  2. Good thing you got permission to go from your mission president!