All former presidents present for stake reorganization

HATTIESBURG, Miss. — Kevin B. Pack was called as the new president of the Hattiesburg Mississippi Stake on Sept. 13 under the direction of Elder Glenn L. Pace of the Seventy, assisted by Elder John C. Taggart of the Seventy. President Howard G. Stevens was released.

At the stake conference, all previous six presidents of the stake were in attendance.

The Hattiesburg Stake was created from the South Mississippi District on June 27, 1965. Edwin H. White was called as the first president of the stake and served from 1965 to 1972.

Subsequent stake presidents included Lawrence M. Udall (1972-1981), Lonnie L. Trussell Jr. (1981-1990), Blair P. Pack (1990-1999), Nelson W. Tackett (1999-2007), President Stevens (2007-2009) and the new president, Kevin B. Pack, who is the son of Blair P. Pack.

— Hattiesburg Stake Public Affairs

California girls treat their dads to dinner

The six girls in Bethany Byers' Primary Activity Day program in the Garden Grove, Calif., 6th Ward, recently decided to treat their dads to a dinner they made themselves.

Byers said, "Trying to get six girls to decide what they will eat was really interesting. They said, 'I never had that before.' And 'I don't know.' I said, 'Will you try it?' They said, 'No.' "

The girls, who are all 9 years old, eventually decided what they would have to eat and planned the entire event.

They decided to make pizza and went to the store with Byers to purchase the ingredients along with fixings for green salad, fruit punch with real fruit, and dessert — chocolate cookies and ice cream with blueberry and strawberry toppings.

They also worked on photos of themselves, which they put in photo frames that they decorated with glitter and jewels to give to their dads.

The girls arrived the evening of the dinner early at the chapel to prepare the meal.

They cleaned the lettuce, chopped the tomatoes, sliced the salami, and got the other toppings ready. Then they rolled out the dough and grated the cheese.

Some told Byers they were not allowed to cut with sharp knives.

Byers told them she was supervising so it would be all right.

"But a lot of them had never touched a sharp knife … so that was interesting," she said. "A lot of the girls' experiences were the first time learning things."

They learned in a previous Activity Day class about manners and setting the table, so they practiced setting the table.

They also sang "I Am a Child of God" to their dads.

The fathers thought it was cool, Byers said. "They were so happy. They really were cool. They were excited and it turned out really good."

— Denise New-Hamilton

3,009 quilts completed for Chicagoland/LDS charities

NAPERVILLE, Ill. — With an initial goal of "2009 Quilts in 2009," Chicagoland Relief Society sisters celebrated the completion of 3,009 quilts on Sept. 26 at the Naperville Illinois Stake Center.

During a dinner held before the General Relief Society broadcast, the quilting efforts of 700 sisters were displayed before being distributed to three charitable organizations. The Project Linus Mission, Newborns in Need Inc., as well as the global Church Humanitarian Services, will receive the colorful quilts and blankets made by stake sisters, as well as community members.

During the celebration, Dianne Rodriguez, president of the Relief Society of the Naperville Stake, presented more than 1,000 quilts to Project Linus Chapter Coordinator Jacque Bartell.

Bartell said the quilts and blankets will help her chapter meet their first important mission, "to provide love, a sense of security, warmth and comfort to children who are seriously ill, traumatized, or otherwise in need." The many handmade blankets with patriotic themes will be given to "children of soldiers that have been killed in action. A blanket seems like a poor substitute for the loss of a parent, but it gives the children something they can hold on to in their time of need."

In order to complete the project, Rodriguez said the quilting materials were furnished to the church sewing groups. "Because this is a service project, most of the materials were donated by church members. We also received support from a local Kiwanis Club, as well as a nearby credit union. The manager of the credit union had a hospitalized child who had received a blanket from the Project Linus Mission. The project was announced in March of this year, and women of the church, along with family and friends in the community, spent countless hours quilting. Within six months, our goal was surpassed by 1,000 quilts."

As quilting groups were organized in all nine wards in the stake, many women approached their neighbors or extended family members about joining in the service project.

Margaret Dietz, living in the Ashbury Gardens Assisted Living Center in North Aurora, Ill., asked that a notice be placed on the bulletin board seeking help with quilting. Eight residents responded, and the group completed 38 crocheted and sewn quilts.

Sue Hendricks, of Aurora, Ill., mentioned the project to her hairstylist, who donated one of her daughter's never-used, handmade, baby blankets.

Sisters even created quilts at family reunions, and Young Women of the Naperville Stake made quilts at girls camp, along with Primary Activity Day girls who learned to sew and quilt during ward meetings.

— Jill Brim