“The Prophets’ Granddaughter, Part 2: The King’s Visit,” Friend, Nov. 2014, 22–23
“Aloha,” Father said when he found Allie feeding the family cow, Spot.
“Aloha!” Allie replied. She and her family had lived on the Sandwich Islands for just a few months, but the Hawaiian word already felt familiar on her tongue.
“I have wonderful news. The king of Hawaii, King Kalakaua, is coming to visit our new chapel, right here in Laie.”
“The king!” Allie squealed.
“Yes,” Father said. “Now let’s go find your mother and brother so we can tell them the exciting news. We have a lot of work to do before he arrives.”
The next few days were a blur of activity. Father finished painting the chapel. Mother and Sister Partridge prepared a breakfast at the mission house for the visitors’ arrival.
“It will be fit for a king,” Mother declared. Allie giggled—never had those words been so true!
Meanwhile, hundreds of Saints came to Laie from all over the Hawaiian Islands for this special meeting. Hawaii now had over 3,600 Latter-day Saints. Nearly 300 had joined the Church since Father had received his mission call last April.
The night before the king’s arrival, Allie stood back with Father and admired all of their hard work on the mission house. Braided ferns covered the railings. Exotic flowers added bright splashes of color. The Hawaiian flag floated grandly in the breeze.
“I’m sure the king will love it,” Allie said. “I can’t wait to hear all about his visit.”
October 6, 1883, dawned bright and clear. Allie watched as Mother dressed in her best dress and left with Father to welcome the king at the mission house. Hours later, they returned with quite a story to tell.
“Hundreds of Saints lined the road and cheered as the king arrived,” Father said. “After the king ate breakfast with us, your mother and I took him to the chapel. It was so full that five hundred people had to stand outside the building!”
“Three choirs from different islands sang, and the king himself spoke to the crowd,” Mother added. “He thanked the Church for honoring the laws of the land and told us to continue our good works. Then we had a feast for more than a thousand people! There was beef, pork, chicken, watermelon, and corn.”
“But we had no plates, knives, forks, or spoons,” Father said. “We had to eat with just our fingers!”
“Even Mother?” Allie gasped.
“Even me,” Mother said with a laugh. “And I rather enjoyed it!”
“His majesty enjoyed it too,” Father said. “It was a very important day for the Church here.”
And our family got to be part of it, Allie thought as she watched the sun set over the purple and gold horizon. The day was ending, but things were just beginning for the Church on the Hawaiian Islands.
To be continued …