30 May 2015

This Is The Place

Brigham called it and so did The Boy
Since The Boy returned from his eight months of missionary service in Mexico, our family's collective goal has been to get him back to full health so he could return to the service he loved. It's been hard for him to be home, caught in a limbo world between his life as a missionary and life at home, the last place he expected to be. We've been walking a thin line too, trying to give him space but being ever mindful of getting him better and wanting to keep him close.

Suffice to say, we were all extremely relieved when his infectious disease specialist (yes, we had to go to that level) cleared him last Friday to return to service. Interestingly, in his approval note, the doctor noted that The Boy would need to stay in the continental US. We had not said anything to him about that. With that approval, the waiting game was on for a new assignment.

A couple of days after The Boy got home, he announced that he knew he would be reassigned to either Idaho or Utah. I, for one, scoffed at either. I knew he'd be assigned in the US, as a SpanAm'er (Spanish-Speaking American assignment), and having served as a SpanAm'er in the Florida Ft. Lauderdale mission 30 years ago, I selfishly (albeit silently) hoped he might be assigned to my old stomping grounds. I think a father-son duo who think they are Cubans may have been the thing to push the stunningly patient and mighty fine SML over the proverbial edge, so it was not to be.

We learned yesterday what is to be. The Boy will follow in the footsteps of his pioneer ancestors and will settle into a desert valley nestled against the Wasatch Mountains. Upon his arrival into what became known as the Salt Lake Valley after a heinous trek, Brigham Young looked out over the vast expanse and declared, "This is the place." The Boy can now say the same. He has been assigned to serve in the Utah Salt Lake City South Mission as a Spanish-speaking missionary. He is excited and we are relieved. It's good to know where he'll serve the balance of his mission.

Now some of you may be shaking your head at a mission call to Salt Lake City. 'Isn't that the mothership?' you ask. Indeed, it is the headquarters of the Church and it is home to a whole slew o'Mormons, to be sure. It's that, for sure, but it is also a place with opportunity to serve, grow, and learn, like any other missionary assignment. I heard from a friend of mine yesterday as his son had served in the same mission as a Spanish speaker. He said, "Even though we were subject to wisecracks and disbelief that accompany a call to SLC, it was a great blessing for him and for us." Amen, brother, and thank you.

So now we wait. We have no idea when he leaves. This call was extended via phone, rather than the white envelope that normally is associated with a mission call, so there's a lot we don't know. We've got a few things to figure out in the coming days. Good times, my friends, good times.

No comments: