6 Church Service

By Bernard D. Major



High Council

My work on the Pioneer Stake High Council continued. As the Assistant Work Director under President Gehart Drechel, I worked on the new four ward and Stake Center every week, two or more nights a week, and on Saturday from below the ground to the finish off all the inside of the building, hanging the doors, ceiling tile, and whatever I was asked to do until it was completed. Four wards were made: Popular Grove, Popular Grove 2nd, Popular Grove 3rd, and Popular Grove 4rth. Edison Ward was split and made up the Popular Grove 2nd and 3rd ward. Popular Grove Ward was split and was made into Popular Grove Ward and Popular Grove 4rth ward.


Bernard in his scout uniform


Michael Bernard Major

Eva and I received a New Year’s day present. Michael Bernard was born Jan. 1, 1956. He was born healthy. He was not the first one born in the hospital (LDS) that day, but we were very happy to receive him. We now have two girls and four boys. We thought having three girls and three boys making it even, but we are very happy with these sons and duaghters that the Lord has blessed us with. We have a wonderful family. Our Father In Heaven had given the most choice sons and daughters, his most beloved spiritual children.



Mattie Agatha Major and Mike 1956



Mike Major  abt 1957

Grandma and Grandpa


Mother and Dad moving up from Spring City to live in our little apt. in the back of the house was a great blessing. Our children spent a lot of time with them, and it was a great relief to me to have them there. Mother’s health had not been good as long back as I remember. She had fainting spells from a heart poblem nearly every day, and I was always afraid that she was going to die. I always went to a closet or some place to pray. Dad would always rub her arm and talk to her until she came out of it. Our children liked to go back and talk to Grandpa and Grandma (Grand father and Grand Mother) especially after we had scolded them about something they did or didn’t do.





After serving on the High Council for 5 1/2 years, I was called to be the Bishop by Harold B. Lee, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and later the President of the Church. This calling was a very humbling experience, very time consuming, but very rewarding in spiritual blessings. If there was any regrets, it was for being away from my family. I didn’t take the time I should have to be with my family during my time as Bishop. We had a hog project that filled our welfare assignment of pork to Welfare Square and our welfare financial assignment. We had many budget fund raising assignments, my ward, stake, and regional meetings to attend, but my greatest assignment was to work with the youth. Early in my teens, my Scout Master Lowell Hansel and my Priest Advisor Vivian Larsen instilled in me to be a leader of youth like they were, and I still have that same desire.





I had many great experiences during my term as Bishop, but the one I still remember most was with John Gerstner and the Teachers and Priest and fathers every year at the Flaming Gorge floating or fishing on the Green River below the dam at Little Hole or Brown Hole farther down the river. There were many times with my sons in the old Ford truck that I bought from Eva’s brother John. I bought a steel topper for the back of the truck, and I finished the inside of it with insulation and plywood paneling. I made a 1" plywood panel that would go across the front of the the truck bed. We had a foam mattress that fit it and one to go on the floor. I would put the two mattresses on top of the plywood, food, stoves, lanterns, etc underneath, and a cushioned seat on both sides of the back of the truck that would seat two boys on each side. I took as many as 6 boys with me.


Ron, Bernard and Ken (in right corner) fishing with the scouts



One time, we were camped at Little Hole on the Green River below the dam. We would either walk and fish upstream or go down stream to where Red Creek came into the Green River. There was a lot of large rocks in the river below where Red Creek came in and made somewhat of a dam, but was rapids through it for about a block. It backed up the water in the river making it like a lake. It sure was good fishing there.


One time my brother-in-law, Frank Woolston, and his son Richard and I and my sons, Kenneth, Bruce and Michael, walked down there from Little Hole, and we each caught our limit of fish. We were hiking back (we had to wade in the water up to our knees in the water around the rock outcropping) when a boat with two men pulled over to shore and said they wanted to check our fish. They were surprised when they saw how many large fish we had. They were the Game Wardens. The Warden took pictures of us and later mailed a copy to me. Another time, when camped at Little Hole with the Teachers, Priests, and some fathers, a bear came into camp while we were asleep and got into some of the food boxes, and ice chests, and helped himself to what food he wanted and scattered the rest of it on the ground. I drove up to Dutch John the next morning and reported it to the Fish and Game people. They came down and shot guns that scared it down river. We never saw it again.


Another time, we were camped at Brown’s Hole (Brown’s Hole was abt 7 to 10 miles down stream from Little Hole. We had to drive east of Dutch John and go trhough the southwest corner of Wyoming, Clay Basin in order to get there.) We were camped there with the Teachers, and the Priests, and some fathers. We would all get in the truck and drive up river a short distance and fish on the river up to the rapids below Red Creek. We all had a lot of fun fishing and all caught fish.


Bruce and Jeff Hancey always worried me. They would jump into the river off a large rock. The water was cold and swift. After we spent the morning fishing, we returned back to camp to get something to eat. While we were getting food for them, all the boys took off their clothes, and went out in the shallow part of the river to cool off. The river was wide there, and was running slower, and was a place for people floating down the river to take their rubber rafts out. While the boys were out in the river we seen five rubber rafts coming down the river together about a block from where we were when we saw them. We called the boys and told them. They started out, but saw they were women and girls, so they stayed in the river and moved down stream a little from where they took the rafts out of the river. They were Young Women from a stake. The Y.W. leaders told us to get the boys out of the river, but we told them that wouldn’t work. They hurried and got the girls out and into a bus that had just come and loaded the rafts onto a truck and hurried and left. The boys were happy to get out as the water was cold, but were very embarrassed and cold.


Another time, right after Kenneth got home from his mission, I took Ken, Bruce, and Mike up to Brown’s Hole fishing. We went up stream from camp. The river was high and we each had hip boots on as we had to wade in the edge of the river. The water was up past our knees as we waded around large rocks on the north bank of the river. Ken and I were up ahead of Bruce and Mike. Bruce was out in the head of some shallow rapids fishing and Mike between them and I. I was fishing in the head of a large hole in the river, and Ken was fishing a little down stream, fishing in the same hole in the river. I was catching fish when I saw that Ken was not in sight. I thought he had fallen into the river. I hurried and grabbed my fishing gear and started downstream, but couldn’t see him. I stopped and prayed several times and cried. I thought I had lost my son, but when I got to where Bruce had been fishing in the rapids, there were my three sons waiting for me. I thank God for all the protection for them the many times we were together.




Ron in Spring City, ca.1946



Ardith  in Spring City,  ca. 1946


Pamela, ca .1951


Bernard, Vince, Gay, Eva and Ardith, ca.1952


Bruce, Mike in baseball uniforms  ca.1965 





Ken, Bruce Mike Christmas 1967.    A dog!


Bruce, Mike, Ken 1967


Mike, ca.1970



Top row:  Ron, Mike, Ken, Bruce

Bottom row:  Pamela, Bernard, Eva, Ardith




Eva and Bernard in 1984