Sunday, November 16, 2008

First Stop Liverpool, Next Stop America.

What an awesome experience it was to see and spend time at the Liverpool Docks. This is where my ancestors, the McBrides, boarded the Horizon Half Clipper and set off for the Boston Harbor across the Atlantic. At the nearby Maritime Museum, we learned the rough conditions that many emigrants had to endure for weeks and weeks out on the ocean. As for Heber McBride, who was about nine years old at the time, he described the voyage as "quick and full of good weather." Then again, he loved the sea. He even says in his journal that he was sad when they reached America because he did not want to leave the ship. Though the journey may have gone relatively smooth for the McBrides, the decision to go to America was not without sacrifice. Margaret was disowned by her family who wished never to see her again. They sold their comfortable home and auctioned off their possessions for the money to go. They took many risks in order to go to America to be with the Saints.

I was greatly touched by Sister Wimmer's devotional that she gave at the docks by the memorial that our church donated. She spoke of the tremendous desire these people had to go to America to be with the saints. There was nothing that they wanted more, and they risked so much to make that journey. "They wanted so badly to be in a community of saints in Zion and you are their dream," said Sister Wimmer. This made me very grateful for the sacrifices that these people made, and the incredible devotion that they had. Our group then sang "Come, Come Ye Saints, " and I think we were all very touched by the spirit as we sang there.

Come, come, ye saints, no toil nor labor fear;
But with joy wend your way.
Though hard to you this journey may appear,
Grace shall be as your day.
Tis better far for us to strive our useless cares from us to drive;
Do this, and joy your hearts will swell -
All is well! All is well!

And should we die before our journey's through,
Happy day! All is well!
We then are free from toil and sorrow, too;
With the just we shall dwell!
But if our lives are spared again to see the Saints their rest obtain,
Oh, how we'll make this chorus swell-
All is well! All is well!

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