Last Sunday I attended the 9:00 a.m. ward in Manhattan. For me it was a 10 minute walk with John from our hotel by Central Park. For others getting there was a much greater ordeal. I hadn’t really thought about that until after Sacrament Meeting and Sunday School class (which, by the way, were like attending a ward at the MTC with testimonies shared in a variety of languages and accents) when I noticed a long hall on my way to the Relief Society room. The hall was lined with strollers, end to end, like handcarts waiting to pull out of camp. I counted more than 20 of them, most of substantial size, not the small umbrella pop-open variety. These were family movers. On closer inspection I saw most of them were filled with things like diaper bags, walking shoes, food, water bottles and clothing items and many had yellow and blue metro cards stuck into mesh pockets on the sides. As I thought about the row of strollers down the hall, and the collection of more strollers near the elevators, I wondered where they all came from. At what hour did these families wake? Where did their journeys begin? How many subways were taken? How many husbands left earlier for meetings leaving wives to rally the children alone? How much did it cost to get here? And then I thought about how their journey was only half completed. They still had distances to go to return home after 3 hours of meetings. Wow. These are peculiar people. They are covenant people. They do things most wouldn’t consider doing on a Sunday morning, every Sunday morning. And from all appearances, they do it very happily.
I decided that I need to be much more thoughtful about my one-block walk to church every week here in Orem. Perhaps I could be more careful about the time I don’t need to spend getting to church and be a little more grateful for the amazing conveniences I enjoy.