Two young elders, Elders Callister and McDonald, came to dinner with us after church Sunday. During our conversation, we learned that Elder Callister is one of LeGrand Richards’ great-grandsons. Bob was able to tell him that his great-grandfather’s book A Marvelous Work and a Wonder was instrumental in helping him make the decision to join the church. It was pretty cool.
I mentioned last week that several in our zone have had some serious health concerns. One sister had surgery on Tuesday, but, is already back at her assignment because everything went so much better than expected. The Lord truly blessed her.
Yesterday I went to the doctor with a sister who speaks English as a second language. Even though she is very fluent in English, sometimes things get lost in translation. I was glad I was there because it really helped me understand more about her health concerns.
And, I’ll be going to two more medical appointments in the next week-and-a-half — also with sisters whose first language isn’t English—so that I can help them understand what the doctor is saying. Somehow, I never visualized myself doing this type of thing on my mission—but, here I am . . .almost a mission “mom.” :-)
This week, we have been especially blessed in the work we are doing. I am very grateful.
President Fenn has started publishing a mission newsletter. In each issue, he plans to feature something from one of the zones in the mission. I’m sharing a story below from the Hosting Zone at the Family History Library. (FYI: Missionaries in the Hosting Zone are specifically instructed not to proselyte. They are there purely to help the patrons with what they are looking for.) Here is what they shared:
“And he shall plant in the hearts of the children the promises made to the fathers, and the hearts of the children shall turn to their fathers.” Doctrine & Covenants 2:2
A young man stepped off the elevator onto the third floor of the Family History Library, the Hosting Zone, and was greeted and assigned to a missionary serving there.
“What are you hoping to do at the library today?” the visitor was asked—and his journey into the past began.
He answered that he was meeting friends for dinner in an hour and was curious about his great-grandfather. There was abundant family lore about him, claiming he was a war hero, a philanthropist and a wealthy man, who died penniless.
Information was gathered, and the search began. The patron’s fingers flew over the keyboard, and images appeared before him. Birth records, death records, newspaper articles…he scanned each document excitedly, then sent them to his personal email account. His phone rang. He was late for dinner. “No, I can’t make it. I’ll meet you later.”
Then, on the computer screen in front of him, an image appeared. It was a photograph of his great-grandfather. He sat in silence. He reached out and touched the screen, and began to cry. “This is so embarrassing. Why am I feeling this way?” he asked. The missionary replied, “That is the Lord touching your heart.” Questions were answered, tears fell freely, and a seed was planted.”
On another note, Bob received a couple of really nice compliments this week. He was talking to one of the employees — a staff supervisor whose work our zone supports. His name is Steve Fox, and he is planning to retire at the end of this year. Steve said, “You know, I would serve a senior mission if I thought I’d get a zone leader like you.”
Then, later in the week, Bob was talking to the two Assistants-to-the-President (A.P.s) who cover our half of the mission, and was telling them they should assign him certain, specific young elders the next time they put together recommended transfers for the president. (Bob was kind of grumbling that most of the young elders we get in our zone take a lot of work.) The A.P.s’ response was, “We send you those elders because they come out better after they’ve been in your zone.” Isn’t that awesome? I was happy to hear him receive such great praise! He does spend a lot of time working with these young elders and helping them feel successful in the work they’re doing. I’m proud of him.
One more year and we’ll be back in North Carolina!! We're already planning a family reunion at the beach when we get back home. Hopefully, we'll have most - or maybe even all - of the family there.