The McLean Stake sponsored a youth temple walk for all the youth in the stake. The idea was to walk 14 miles from one of our stake's ward buildings all the way to the temple. The purpose of this was to help give the youth and parents an appreciation for the temple, the blessing it is to have a temple so close, the importance of the temple in your life, and the willingness to help give to the church temple fund to assist those who have to travel farther to attend the temple and partake in these sacred ordinances for themselves.
I was so excited to be able to spend the day with the youth. It turned out to be a perfect day for a walk. The spring weather was just the right temperature and everyone on the walk was in such a positive spirit. I attended as a chaperone to walk with the youth to encourage them and make sure they stayed safe. I found a group of Beehives who were so adorable. We sang Disney songs, girls camp songs and once the temple was in site, two miles out, we started to sing church songs which of course included, "I Love to See the Temple." I was very touched at how these girls helped each other out. They would give each other piggy back rides and took turns carrying each others back packs. They did not want my help in any of this just encouragement and direction on where to go. I was very impressed with the youth. Every group I came across was very enthusiastic and supportive of each other.
At the end as we were climbing the hill to the temple there were so many parents cheering us on the way. This only helped to boost the youth even more and I think they could really tell that there are so many people, both in this life and the next, that are cheering for them to come to the temple and make it a goal in life to go inside someday. I could not have imagined a better way to spend a Saturday than walking to the temple.
Here is a video that was filmed of the walk and some of the emotions that it stirred by the participants. Also, a news article about the event.http://www.youtube.com/watch?
Meridian Magazine - McLean Stake Youth Walk 14 Miles to the Washington D.C. Temple