Sunday, April 20, 2008

Sunday Night Viewing

For those of you who were not able to make it to the viewing in Rancho Cucamonga we wish you all could have been there. Tonight's viewing service was a one of a kind tribute.

Upon arriving at the Stake Center in elite Rancho Cucamonga, California, the parking lot was full to overflowing. Many people were both inside and outside the stake center talking and reminiscing. Upon entering the building ushers were needed to escort us to different lines. There was a line for the viewing that went around the entire hallway that surrounds the cultural hall. The overflow to that line had to sit in the chapel in rows until they were called to join the original line. At one point the chapel was all but full. It was truly amazing how many lives President has touched.

Inside the cultural hall were pictures of the Hadfield family, memorials items of President, and many mission Oeste items. He left a true legacy. There were many people within the cultural hall too. In fact, and this is something you had to be there to really understand, the Tongan Branch from the Stake spontaneously gathered at one end of the cultural hall, gathered seats, and began singing hymns. They sang like only the Polynesians can sing. It reminded me of the feeling you get when watching The Other Side of Heaven about Elder Groberg's mission when they sing to him when he leaves the island. The "choir" had their own harmonies, their own rhythms; but the Spirit that was felt throughout the building was one of sublime reverence and awe.
There must have been over 70 men, women, and children singing. The music filled the cultural hall, the hallways where everyone was waiting in line, and it even filled through the partition into to chapel. If there was a piece of heaven on earth today, it was in Rancho Cucamonga.

Finally, upon entering the viewing room a unique spirit filled the air. A cool feeling. Yet a warmth from within. There were many beautiful sprays of flowers, wreaths, vases, and there with all her courage was dear Hermana Hadfield. She was wearing a beautiful red dress demonstrating her beauty both inside and out. She looked very good. She seemed strong, stalwart, and courageous. At the same time tender, loving, and kind. She met each person with gratitude and thankfulness. Next to her, in his beautiful oak casket, lay President's body. His body looked very peaceful and sublime. A feeling of gratitude and conviction came over us. He was truly a man of God. Next to President was the wreath from the Chile Santiago West Missionaries. What a great man! What an awesome Legacy. Ironically, as sad as we were to have to endure this burden, we all left wanting to be a little better.

May each of us give thanks to our Heavenly Father for all He has given us, including a Man of Truth: President John C Hadfield.


Travis said...

Very nice description. Thanks for keeping those of us who could not attend updated. I wish I could have been there.

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