|Print | Back||February 14, 2014|
Creative LivingLDS Travelers Can Now Connect with LDS Guides Around the World
by Dian Thomas
For more than six years, I traveled with BYU Education Weeks all over the United States and Canada. One of the nicest benefits of this was that we were met by our hosts and often had the most wonderful tours of their city.
If there happened to be a temple in the city, the tour would include the temple. There would be stories about the temple, and the host guides would share a great deal about the growth of the Church in their area.
When I went to Calgary, Alberta, more than 30 years ago, my tour guide was Barbara Benson Walker, who was President Ezra Taft Benson’s daughter. We learned about her time in Washington, D.C., when her father was Secretary of Agriculture under President Eisenhower.
Her husband was the stake president and she shared many insights with us about the growth of the church in Calgary, Canada.
Dick Jensen, who got me into the travel business, caught the vision of providing local LDS guides for LDS travelers. When he asked me what I thought about starting a business, I told him it sounded just like what we did during Education Week for so many years.
Dick created a website that offers guides in more than 20 cities across the globe, but he plans to add many more guides in additional cities.
In addition to providing tours of traditional sites and offering historical and cultural background, guides booked through www.ldscityguides.com can give information about the local history of the LDS church, schedule temple excursions, or even arrange attendance at a meeting of a local church congregation.
Henry Shi has been a guide for Dick in China for more than a decade. On a trip to the United States a year ago, he took the lessons and joined the Church.
Dick tells a story of a guide that they had in South America. Dick asked him to guide him on Sunday to take him to church meetings because the guide was already a member. The guide said that his tour schedule was so busy that he did not have time to go very often.
Dick insisted that the guide take him to church, and when the two of them went to their church meetings. Everyone recognized the guide and welcomed him. Then the bishop called the guide aside and did something quite interesting. He called the guide on a mission. The former guide is now serving on that mission.
Serving as an LDS guide can be a great opportunity for church members to share their love of the gospel with tourists, and being a tourist who is guided by LDS guides can be a great opportunity for you to share your love of the Church while learning more about the culture and the country you are visiting.
Information about the guides and the cities available can be found at www.ldscityguides.com or by calling 801-917-1131.
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