To dedicate the Calgary LDS Temple, there were three sessions held on Sunday. The sessions were conducted on the top floor of the temple in the Celestial Room, with the proceedings broadcast by closed circuit telecast to those congregated in other rooms of the temple and in chapels throughout much of Western Canada. I attended the sessions in the chapel in Silver Springs, while R had the great privilege to sing in the 20-voice choir that provided the music for the service.
R successfully auditioned for the part, which meant a lot to her because she has been passed over for several singing opportunities lately and was feeling her singer-life disappearing somewhat. The group, which was composed of members from the NW and NNW portions of Calgary (West Stake and North Stake) held practices regularly for a few months, learning their songs very thoroughly. R said she found the rehearsals to be very uplifting and positive, credit largely due to the glowing personality of director Janice Kershaw.
R got a horrible night's sleep prior to the big day, and had to rush through snowy streets to get the kids out to her parents' house (where Uncle Ross would watch them) and make it on time. Despite some stress, things went beautifully when the time came to perform.
The Celestial Room is not very large, so the choir sat in another room nearby and filed in when it was their time to sing. R was greeted with a host of familar faces in the small congregation -- her grandparents, parents, aunt, uncle, a cousin and several good friends. In her words, "Walking into that room made me feel like I was 'coming home' since I could see so many family and friends there. I imagine heaven will be like that." Singing each song became very personal, very emotional.
From my vantage point, watching the video feed, the choir sounded wonderful. R's parents said that being there live was a very powerful experience. We are so grateful that R got this chance. Something that she will remember forever.