News Story

Mormon Singles Team Up to Beautify Island

A group of single Mormons recently travelled to Rangitoto Island, off the coast of Auckland, New Zealand, to spend a day improving a walking path for the benefit of local residents and visitors to the island.

The service effort was part of a weekend of activities for single members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from Auckland and other parts of the country.

Working with Department of Conservation (D.O.C.) staff and local residents, the group cleared a frequently used path, followed by laying down some fresh bitumen.

According to participant Hilda Port: “We cleared the path in front of one of the historical cottages on the island. We had to clear it of plants, weeds, and rocks, then cover with metal and then haul 3.5 tonnes of bitumen to lay and then compact.:

“Working with bitumen,” she says, “meant that as soon as the sacks were opened and the bitumen exposed to oxygen it got 'sticky' and we had to use pick axes to break it apart before it could be wheel-barrowed to the site.”

“Then again it would need to be broken down even more and then laid, raked and then compacted. It was hard back-breaking work but the camaraderie amongst everyone built stronger friendships and also afforded us opportunities to make friends with locals and visitors who were nearby.”

“One of the older gentlemen who owns a bach on the Island and joined in the work with us, spoke of his visit to the Hamilton New Zealand Temple when it was first built and had a open house in 1958. He shared with  us his meeting with the temple president and what a wonderful experience it had been for him.”

“Now 50 or more years later he is working alongside Latter-day Saints to help beautify and restore his little piece of heaven on earth.”

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