Thursday, May 8, 2014

The Day Sam Gets His Mission Call!

This day that he dreamed of
and worked for
and planned for...

This day that would be one of the most memorable and happy days of his life. Of our lives...

It's finally here.

After lots of preparation and finally turning in his mission papers to church headquarters last week, we all have anxiously awaited his special letter or "call" coming. The letter that would tell him where in the world he would be serving for the next two years. 

We weren't anticipating it coming today, thinking that next Wednesday would be the day. The thought (and looking back on it, a quiet sense of intuition) that this might really be the day ran through my mind this morning, but I kind of dismissed it because in most situations our city's post office will actually thoughtfully call the families of these prospective missionaries early in the morning to let them know that their letter is there ready to pick up. And that didn't happen.

So before heading to an appointment of mine in the early afternoon, I thought I'd walk across the street to the mailbox. Finding that special letter didn't even cross my mind. You can't imagine the surprise and joy I felt when I saw it crammed in among the junk mail. Huge smile on my face and I think I let out an out-loud shout of glee!

Shaking (beyond excited), I got back in the car and texted Sam at school to let him know the letter had come. Immediately, he called me back; his own amazement and joy in his voice. We both spread the word and I would spend the rest of the afternoon and evening preparing our home for all the friends and family that would gather with us later that night.

It just about killed me having that letter just sitting there next to me all day. Sam decided on waiting to open it until 8:30 that night, after he got home from work.

We ended up with our living room packed. Smiles and excitement and support and laughter and everyone's predictions of where he would be called.

So much love and so much joy.

Once we were all gathered and ready, Sam asked my dad, his Papa, to say a prayer. A sweet, tear-filled and humble prayer of gratitude and peace.

Then, that wonderful, sacred moment finally arrived. All of us eagerly listening with hearts racing as Sam began opening the letter, standing to his feet, and reading aloud these words...

"Dear Elder Crofts,

You are hereby called to serve as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. You are assigned to labor in the Arizona Tucson Mission. It is anticipated that you will serve for a period of 24 months. You should report to the Mexico Missionary Training Center on Wednesday, August 20, 2014. You will prepare to preach the gospel in the Spanish language..."

As you can imagine, this news is all so... new. Arizona! The state right below us here in Utah. And speaking Spanish, too. Grateful that Sam has a little bit of a head start from his taking three years of this language as part of his high school experience. But until August, there is so much to learn. About the area (the mission is on the bottom half of the state and bordering Mexico, as well as taking in part of New Mexico), the people, and the culture. And like we experienced with Gary and Jane (who are currently serving as missionaries now), all the further preparation to get him all outfitted and ready to go.

Sam's already been accepted to the university that he applied to and desired to attend, so the plan is that he'll graduate from high school at the end of this month and then defer college until he gets home in two years.

I wouldn't have it any other way for him. Seeing the tremendous growth that his older brother and sister have experienced on their missions makes it a little easier for me to let him go. They are the happiest they've ever been in their entire lives.

The wonderful blessing it is to have this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to serve and love other people. The chance to grow and work and discover himself emotionally and spiritually. The precious gift it is to understand and become closer to God... 

This is my greatest wish for my son Samuel in this stage of his life.

I think this smile says it all.

(just for the sake of going down memory lane, Gary and Jane's mission call days here and here.)


  1. WOW! I came here to see whats been happening in your kitchen this week, and found a Mission Call instead- congrats to Sam!! This is such exciting news for your family. You are a brave and faithful momma, Emily. I'm sure you are eagerly awaiting Gary's return, yet feeling a little tug at the heart-string as you prepare to send Sam off to Arizona. Blessings, my friend....

  2. I was awaiting your post this morning. You write these posts so beautifuly and get to the heart of that anticipation. Congratulations to Sam, Arizona it is! Not too far Mom.

  3. So happy for Sam and your family. I just love how you express, and share such joy, love and happiness. Your pictures and video say it all. God Bless your family Emily!!

  4. Emily, I don't know you and haven't had a relationship with God for a long time, but knowing that people like you and your children exist in the world makes me know there is hope for the future. Thank you for sharing your story with us.