Narrative for a Family Home Evening skit
Narrator: When James Gale was six years old, in 1852 in Australia, C. W. Wandell and Murdock brought the gospel of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to them. Henry and Sarah were both baptized and confirmed by C. W. Wandell 8 May 1852.
On Wednesday, April 7, 1853 they started for America with a small company of saints in charge of Elder Wandell. This was the first company of saints to leave Australia to come to America. They left Sydney in the ship "Envelope" with their four children; namely: Elizabeth, James, George, and Rebecca. While on the Pacific Ocean on May 12th, 1853, another son was born and named Wandell Pacific after Elder Wandell and the Ocean they were on. That means James mother, Sarah was 8 months pregnant when she boarded the ship.
Nine weeks after they left Sydney, they reached America, and landed at San Pedro, California. Brother Button and others met them there with teams and wagons to take them to the Church ranch at San Bernardino. On the second day out, (in what we call Anaheim today near Disneyland) they camped at the Coco Mungo ranch to prepare dinner. One woman took the children out in the desert to gather wildflowers and rest from the tedious journey by ship. Other ladies took care of the tiny babies and cooked dinner. It was a lovely place without any brush and being away from the campers, they were enjoying themselves. When the group returned from their flower hunt they ate their dinner, which was spread out on the ground. Everyone ate together and helped themselves. In their hurry to pack up and go on their way, they overlooked the fact that James was not with them. After everyone was ready to start and were climbing in the wagons.
Sarah (Mother): Henry, I canít find James.
Henry (Father): Where was he last seen?
Sarah: Some of the sisters took the kids out in the desert to gather wild flowers, they started back to the camp & he said he would return directly and to go on their way. He never returned and is nowhere in camp.
Henry: Letís start looking in all the wagons.
Narrator: They searched in all the wagons to their great dismay he was not there. They were a long distance from water and knew they must go on, but in spite of this fact, they unhooked their teams and started their search up the wash and around where they had been gathering flowers, but no trace of him could be found. They searched with lanterns and touches all that night.
Henry: Let us all kneel in a prayer circle and ask for help from our Heavenly Father.
Narrator: Prayer circles were held in his behalf. The search was continued until about ten the next morning, but still they didn't find me. So, they decided I might have been eaten by wild animals or perished with fatigue. They made ready to go on their way without him, because they were unable to find any trace of James and the water supply was getting very low.
Henry: We have to go on Sarah, he is lost to us, and wild animals must have gotten him. We have to go on for water or we all will die.
Sarah: I wonít go without him. I will not, I canít leave him.
Henry: Sarah listen, we have to leave, we have searched everywhere and he is nowhere to be found. We have to find water or no one will make it.
Sarah: No I wonít go, I just canít leave him.
Henry: Ok then, we will just have to leave you here.
Narrator: Trying to persuade her to go on, they unloaded her trunk and belongings and left her sitting on her trunk with a small baby in her arms. After going a short distance they looked back and saw her kneeling in prayer beside the trunk. They turned and went back to try to persuade her to come on as it was of no use to hunt longer.
Sarah: If you would go up the wash a short distance and search again you will find James.
Henry: Ok, we will go one more time, but we wonít find himÖ
Narrator: The group went again in the direction she told them. They saw a small boy coming toward them and he started to cross a deep hallow. He was quite a sight, just a small boy of six, dirty, tear stained and sunburned, and with travel worn bare feet.
Henry: James, stay there we will come and get you.
James: Here are the flowers I found for you Mother.
Narrator: In his hand was still the wilted bunch of flowers he had picked for his mother. They soon had him by each hand and were hurrying him to the camp. Here they all knelt in a thanksgiving prayer. He told them how he had wandered around looking for the camp until evening. He remembered getting upon a large rock, eight or ten feet wide, about five feet from the ground to see if he could see the camp, but it was useless. It was about sundown. So he lay down, tired and hungry, and cried himself to sleep.
Next morning he awoke with the sun shining in his face got down and wandered around until he met the men coming up the wash. He took them back to the rock where he spent the night, and they found footprints of the men who had searched for him in the night, also of animals all around the rock. They returned to camp loaded up Sarah's trunk and went on their way rejoicing.