Hand written with a request that it be included.
Firstly there is a Hymn that has come up in my brain so much lately. It is “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day” kind of strange to be thinking of that Hymn in the middle of the year isn’t it? But there’s a line in the song-two verses actually, that came repeatedly to mind this week.
“Then in despair I bowed my head,
there is no peace on Earth! I said
for hate is strong and mocks the song,
of peace on Earth good will to men.
Then pealed the bells more loud and deep
God is not dead nor doth he sleep
the wrong shall fail, the right prevail
with peace on Earth good will to men.”
-Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
I’ve thought of these words over and over. At the beginning of my time in the WA-TAC, I was taken aback by how much alcohol I smelt and tattoos I saw and how many broken families I met. I’m still sad to see those things. But I also know that God will always win. There’s a whole lot of Good, a whole lot of light, a whole lot of wonder all around us. I thought that today with all those STARFISH I saw, the cool water of the Puget sound brushing against the shore. I think of it when I hear primary kids sing. I think of it when I read your letters. GOD WILL ALWAYS WIN. Remember that when satan tries to get you down.
Also, I forgot to tell about Mission Tour! Elder Piper of the 70 is AWESOME! I dearly enjoyed his dry sense of humor and his powerful testimony. He is missing the last segment of his two middle fingers on hos right hand-he lost them to a snow blower while doing service splits with the missionaries. He said when he puts his right arm to the square, he’s the only one who can say he loves and sustains the brethren at the same time! (His missing fingers make it look like he’s always saying I love you.) He was adamant about meeting each one of us. He sure is observant. As soon as he shook my hand and I said “Sister Boren” he said back “Muy Bien.” He must’ve seen my nametag lickedy split, I never saw him glance at it. He offered profound council on helping our investigators make commitments not to us, but to the Lord. That will enable their conversion to be more self reliant, self led, and more in tune with the spirit.
I’m writing this next page a few days later, June 27th. I received some unexpected news Tuesday afternoon. Sister Young & I went to the Library to print off a few LDS.org articles for Asan when we got a phone call from President Weaver. He was just then exiting the Olympic Drive exit to come talk with us in person- we told him we were just down the street at the Library. As soon as we hung up, Sister Young turned to me with a look of shock and worry “you got your visa” she said plainly. I wondered, and waited anxiously for President Weaver. We spotted his white shack of hair from across the parking lot, and after he said hello in his cheery way and gave us both a hug, he held out a white paper and said, “Do you know what this is? I saw three bolded black letter names of Elder Decker, Elder Higginson, and then my own – travel plans, just like it looked when we flew to Tacoma. I couldn’t believe it. My visa came. President had known on my birthday, but didn’t tell me at the fireside because Sister Dean has not received hers yet. She is the fourth member of our Argentina-bound WA-TAC waiting group. She’s far more anxious to leave than I am. I ache for her!
I report to the Mission office at 8:00am this Monday Morning, July 1st. I fly into Atlanta with Elder Higginson & Decker, where we’ll meet several others of our MTC district and then we’re off to the Buenas Aires Airport. A la bella del sol.
I can’t believe this day has finally come. I love the WA-TAC and I’m devastated to leave our 25+ investigators and Sister Young. We work as such a team! I will forever love my memories here and count them an integral part of my mission.
And at the same time, I’m overcome with excitement and anticipation and love for my Mission in Argentina!
I’ll be calling from the Airport on Monday! I can’t wait to hear your voices again! How I love you Mom, and Dad, A, T, J, C!
Con mucho Amor,
Con mucho Amor,