The Real Elder Price
The Real Elder Price, Part 8: Hello and Goodbye
My time here is wrapping up. I have been fading out and new elders have been stepping up to the plate. This work will continue without me. It has changed me and been a great blessing.
Jared returned to Orange County, California, and started law school a few months later. He got married in May 2011.
This week was special to me. It started on a very high note with our baptism service on Saturday. The service went great. One of our baptisees, sister Aude, was accompanied by her recent convert husband Rostand who was looking like a stud in his policeman uniform. It was really sweet to see the love the gospel can create and nourish in families. Another of our baptisees, sister Light, was being baptized by her recent convert father. The power of godliness was manifest during those priesthood ordinances. The last person I confirmed on my mission was Light. She is about 14 and loves to study the scriptures. Blessing her was a great experience. The words I needed to say were given to me. Last week I related an experience in contacting a lady named Colette. She has been prepared for the gospel, and it hurts a little that I won't get to teach her, but the missionaries here will do great things with her. I have all the confidence in the world that I will hear one day about her baptism.
Seth returned to Seattle, and subsequently resumed his education at BYU-Idaho.
|Seth Lee returning|
Elder Kendell Coburn, who in the hard beginning of his time in Africa had received assurance that he would love his mission, wrote:
My thoughts are all over the place. I don't know how to explain it, other than this end of the mission stuff is horrible!! My dad sent me a wonderful email this morning. He explained how a couple of weeks ago he received a prompting of something he needed to tell me, but he waited until today. It was short and simple: "Well done, my good and faithful servant."
Kendell and Elder Daniel Kesler returned from the same mission to the same airport—Salt Lake City—and descended the stairs arm-in-arm. Kendell began university life at Utah State University, and Daniel at BYU.
Elder Chirwa's last email recounted "an amazing experience with Alphonse Madiya." He wrote:
Alphonse is the artist that engraves on the nuts. I took him a picture of the First Vision and also of the Manti Temple for my companion. He engraved these two pieces so beautifully that it brought tears to my eyes. I wonder if he ever thought about what was symbolized in these two images: the restoration and the possibility to live together forever. I think he did. So before we took our priceless souvenirs, he asked us to pray for him. He rushed into his house and pulled out an old worn BUKU YA MOLOMONHI, a Lingala Book of Mormon Jared Wigginton gave him many months ago. We read together and with the little Kicongo [dialect] I know, I tried to bear my testimony.
I guess the wonderful mission experiences are numbered for me, but they sure have been sweet, and I am keen on using every last minute to serve the lord and others.
Margaret Blair Young is the president of the Association for Mormon Letters and has published eight books—six novels and two short story collections. Three of the novels were co-authored with Darius Gray and give the history (documented) of Black Latter-day Saints. She and Gray made the documentary Nobody Knows: The Untold Story of Black Mormons, which is currently under contract with the Documentary Channel and showing nationally. She has written six encyclopedia articles and other scholarly papers on Blacks in the western United States, and particularly Black Mormons. She teaches creative writing at Brigham Young University.