The family was expecting a special envelope in the mail yesterday but it did not arrive. Today I got home before Jill so I checked the mailbox. An envelope about the right size was there. Well see for yourself, the big white one. Yes it is Daniel’s mission call (yippee!). It is customary in our family for me to call Jill and tell her we have already opened the envelope and to announce that our son is going to some totally bogus mission. For example, when Jake’s envelope arrived Paul and I were home. Jill and Jake were at a track meet. So I called her and said, “Paul and me couldn’t wait so we opened the envelope. Jake is going to the Idaho Pocatello Mission, Vietnamese speaking.” Paul confirmed this. We had Jill believing that we had opened the envelope but she wasn’t quite sure if we had told her the right mission.
This time around Jill was at work so I sent an email to her and some other family members. It read:
I got home and Daniel had already opened his mission envelope. I think Paul must have put him up to it. Anyway Daniel is going to the Arizona Navajo-Zuni Mission, speaking Navajo (I hear it is a distant relative of Mandarin Chinese — real distant). We are all going out to celebrate at 4:30 pm (Paul hasn’t had lunch yet), so anyone who can’t make it you’re fixing your own supper, there’s left-overs in the fridge.
Turns out that Jill never got the email — she had left early to try to intercept the envelope before I did. Now she has hidden it until all the family can get together for the grand opening. Why hide it, you have asked? Observation and attentiveness are your strong points I can see. When Paul’s mission call came and we had all the family around ready to open it, Jake grabbed the envelope and ran out the door and raced up the street. You know other kids do drugs but our child sprints up the street with an envelope in his hand being chased by several family members. No-one could catch him (he was in track) and we spent half an hour trying to find him. He eventually came back and we opened the envelope to learn that Paul was going to Provo to learn Spanish and Oakland to speak it.
Jill ordered pizza and family and friends of Daniel gathered to hear where Daniel will be serving. Sarah and Derek are on vacation but they were contacted and placed on the speaker phone. The best part is the opening of the envelope. Adelaide, Steven, Paul, Jill, me, Tyler Stout, and three of Daniel’s friends were watching.
And here is where Daniel will be heading 29th October — actually he will be going to the MTC first — Mongolia Ulaanbaatar Mission.
The first two paragraphs read:
Dear Elder Willoughby:
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 Mongolia Ulaanbaatar Mission. It is anticipated that you will serve for a period of 24 months.
You should report to the Missionary Training Center at Provo, Utah on Wednesday, 29 October 2008. You will prepare to preach the gospel in the Mongolian language. Your mission president may modify your specific assignment according to the needs of the mission.