Thursday, October 22, 2009

Sealed Together with Love Forever

It finally happened! John and I along with Bash and Mia were sealed in the Housotn Temple on Sat. Oct. 17th. We'd been waiting a whole year for this special day to arrive and thankfully, it happened. It was the perfect weekend with lots of family and friends but best of the overwhelming presence of both the Spirit and those here and beyond the veil. I overheard our Bishop tell my mother in law, "I know angels are rejoicing this day", and I just melted when she responded "I know One in particular". I cannot even begin to describe the emotions that were evoked on that most precious day in the Temple surrounded by Holiness, purity, beauty and love. When our children arrived, as Tara Hart stated "there was not a dry eye in the house". Thank you will never express our gratitude to our church leaders, ward, close friends and family, those who traveled to be here, and just everyone who was a part of our very special day. You all pitched in, (viciously) would be an understatement, with all of your talents and knowledge of how to get this all done. It was a magical day that we will never forget. We love you all!

I'd like to leave you with a letter from Elder Chappell, one of the missionaries who taught me the discussions. I had to take out alot about the actual Temple experience but you'll still feel it, in the rest of his writing.
The best day of this week, wasn't the interview though. It was on Saturday afternoon, when John and America were sealed. Wow. What an incredibly humbing experience. I guess I should start at the begining. Elder Plater and I headed up there saturday morning at around 11. We spent the morning visting all of our old haunts in Eagle Springs, before going to the Rire home at 1. The house was super busy with all of her family down. We talked to them a little, but they were busy getting ready. We rode up to the temple with them, and it was so fun to just be together again, the four of us! We laughed and talked and had a good 30 min drive to the temple. Once there, they went one way, and Elder Plater and I went another. We waited in a separte room with a bunch of Johns family, and members of the Eagle Springs ward. it was so fun to see them again, and chat with them. I was surprised at how they remembered us! Eventually a little latin lady came into the room and asked the witnesses to come with her please. Well, that was Elder Plater and I, so we followed her through some corridors in the temple until we got to an office. Eventually, President Steuart, the sealer, came in and talked with us for a minute. We signed their marriage certificate. Wow, what an honor! We were then lead into the sealing room, and Plater and I had a few minutes alone in that sacred room to think about the long journey there. I turned to him and said, "this is the part of the fairy tale where one of us says something really deep and profound" neither of us came up with anything, and soon the rest of the guests came in. It was really amazing seeing all my old friends in the temple. It forms a bond, you know? Well, then John and America walked in, wearing temple clothes, and that was about more than i could take. Pres. Stewart talked to them for a minute, then performed the cermony, it seems like an understatement to say the spirit was strong. Then he asked that Sebastion and baby Mia be brought in. He warned us that they might look differnt, or seem diffrent here in the temple. And he was right. Mia was a perfect angel, and was right at home. She didnt cry or anything. He sealed them together, then they just stood there while he spoke to them as an eternal family. Thats when i really felt the veil lift, thats when i was so acutely aware of God's awareness of us individually, and i felt a unique spirit like i've never felt before. I think i might kind of understand i some small way what the celestial kingdom feels like. It feels like a family. A family that never has to say goodbye. Bro. Steuart then asked all the guests to file by and congratulate them. Where Elder Plater and I sat, as the witnesses, we were the last ones out, and we shared a tender moment alone with them. I'll never forget the way i felt in that room. I'll never forget the love that i have for the Ririe family. " great shall be your joy?"

I love you all, and I love this Eternal Gospel, and the incredible power of the priesthood.

Elder Andrew Chappell

Photos done by none other than the fantabulous Kelsy Call!


  1. Those are absolutely beautiful pictures and of course you are a beautiful eeternal family with all the amazing blessings that you guys so deserve! I am soo happy for you! I am excited that you are my VT. Thanks for coming yesterday. I hope we can get together on days that aren't VT days as well. Thanks for listening.

  2. It was such a great day!!! I am so happy I was able to take part in it! I absolutly LOVE your pics!!!!! Ya'll are such an awseome family! Im so glad you are sealed together forever! We love you! Clarks

  3. America!! First of all I want you to know that you are about the prettiest lady I know :)
    Second, it was such an amazing experience to witness you become and eternal family. You have taught us so much without saying a word...your example of determination and unwavering faith is palatable. Thank you for that and reminding us of what this life is all about. You're family has a beautiful aura about you and everyone you come in contact with feels that beauty. You have great purpose here on this earth, I feel it.

  4. So awesome isn't it!...Words just cannot describe the feelings you have on a day like this.
    This is what it's all about. It was awesome to see you the night before, you were just glowing!

    I would have loved to have been there, of course I wasn't going to invite myself, but actually I was planning on showing up anyway, ha ha... Unfortuneately I started having contractions and had to leave the temple early that night...being that I'm only in my 5th month I couldn't chance coming. I usually don't start pre-term labor until my 7th I didn't get up for a week.
    I am so glad my father-in-law was able to seal you and your family together. What's great about that is you will see him again and again as you go back to the temple. When Joe and I were married, we were sealed in the Dallas Temple and never saw our sealer again. So this is extra awesome for you to have that opportunity in the future. He asked me about you last week. So he doesn't just perform the ceremonies and forget.
    He is super awesome and we love him to death!!
    We are so grateful for the church and the ability to have an eternal family, and are so glad you have that now too!!!!

  5. and by the way, such a gorgeous bride you make...and that lil' doll!!!
    I LOVE HER!!!!


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