We returned home from Cancun (more on this later) on Thursday morning ( July 3rd) and found Chick’s mission call waiting for him on the kitchen table. Excitement had been building for nearly six weeks—his mission papers were submitted May 25th—and we were all eager to learn where and when he would be going. But no. It was not to be, at least not immediately.
Chick decided that he wanted to read his mission call to the accompaniment of fireworks which meant he would not open the envelope until the next evening (July 4th) at 9:30 p.m. For 36 hours the large white envelope magneted to the refrigerator door tantalized us……
That is, it tantalized most of us….. Dear Tanah had to work the evening of July 4th and was more than a little bummed that she would miss the family, the fireworks, and the mission call revelation. Dear Chick, in a move that was more than generous, let Tanah secretly and discretely open his mission call on the condition that she tell no one. Friday morning she steamed the envelope open, read the call, re-sealed the envelope, and then walked around the house with a very self-satisfied, smug look on her face. The rest of us, including Chick, had to wait for the fireworks.
We watched the fireworks at the Gibson home where my saintly sister-in-laws, Jill and Sallie, posted a banner and maps of the USA, Europe, and the world on Jill’s garage door. After guessing where he would be called and just before the physical fireworks started, Chick dramatically ripped open the envelope and deliberately read the enclosed letter.
“Dear Elder Hislop: You are hereby called to serve as a missionary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. You are assigned to labor in the Washington Everett Mission….You should report to the Provo Missionary Training Center on Wednesday, October 1, 2014. You will prepare to teach the gospel in the English language…..”
Seldom have I seen Chick so excited. Grinning widely and prancing wildly, he gave us hugs and high fives before disappearing inside to call friends and family from Florida (“I think I woke Uncle Brad up….”) to California (Uncle Blaine said “Cool”) to Issaquah (My mission is only an hour away from Uncle Wright). My parents, who are on a service mission in Belfair, WA, are also very close to Everett.
It appears our prayers for a great mission president were answered. Wright knows President Mark Bonham and speaks highly of him. Chris has met him and Sallie’s cousin worked with him.
On drive home Chick sang “Everett, Washington. Everett , Washington…..is where I’m going on my misss-ssion!”
My heart is full; full of gratitude for a son who is so excited about his mission call and full of appreciation for all of you who have sincerely supported him. Thank you for answering the phone after 9 p.m., for returning his phone calls eagerly, for texting repeatedly, and for making his call opening an event. Thank you, thank you, thank you validating our son with your interest and enthusiasm.
October 1st…………Let the countdown begin………….