Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Sobering news

(Sorry this is my email partly from this week and last week. ive been so busy i havnt really been able to finish this letter and send it until today)

My dear family and friends,

Sorry it has been a little bit since I have written, it’s just been insanely busy for me and the office lately.
That’s super awesome that you have some really cool job opportunities curt! It sounds like finally all that work is getting you somewhere even if that somewhere is in Florida haha. No but seriously getting that job with Marriot would be pretty awesome. I can’t believe how much the boys are growing. Tucker watching dinosaur documentaries (taking after his uncle) and Calvin talking like a toddler. Wow they are growing up so fast. I hope you all have an awesome time in Las Vegas! Elder Yergensen another secretary here is actually from Las Vegas so he says hi and to tell his home hi for him haha. And Mom I'm so glad you finally got your letter after like 2 months. Sorry it took so long, but I'm really happy that you enjoyed it.

Well, you may or may not have heard, but part of the reason I haven’t been able to write and why I have been so busy is that an Elder died in our mission last week. Yes, his name is Elder Taufa, and he is Tongan but is from Utah. He was actually in my old area Catarina if you believe it or not and there was an accident in the house one night last week and he got electrocuted. Honestly it’s something that I will never forget. I am not at liberty to say exactly everything that happened but you can look it up online and it says the official statement and everything. Here in the mission you always hear stories about stuff happening like that, but it never actually happens. Let’s just say that this past week has been one of the longest in my life. When it happened last Wednesday night, we stayed up all night when we heard what had happened and took phone calls from the area office and from president and from a ton of different people giving out information and trying to figure out what happened. It was so surreal. We had a meeting/ memorial service the next day with all the missionaries over in that part of the mission where I was. We had to go to the house in catarina and pack up all his stuff into his bags and send it to the capital where they sent his body. Then every missionary wrote a letter to his parents which I had to revise and compile into a book that we gave to his dad that came down on Monday to get the body and visit with president. Basically I didn’t sleep for like 3 days, and we were just running all over the place doing things. It was insane. I just couldn’t believe that it happened in the house I lived in for so long, and my old companion Elder Galvez was there when he died. I didn’t personally really know Elder Taufa, but I had seen him before in meetings and everything. It was just a shocker to just have something like that happen, because it doesn’t happen very often. Its been a really sobering experience, and it has brought many questions to my mind about the plan of salvation and about death itself. It was just one of those things where you realize how fragile our lives are. It also has made me wonder a lot about my life, the mission, and why I'm here and where I'm going. It is something as missionaries we always teach. The plan of salvation, what happens after death, but it’s something different when it’s so close to you. People you know, places you´ve been. I have just been thinking a lot about all that, and life, and I feel like ive learned a lot about why I'm here, especially literally why I'm here in the office of the mission.  I know I am having experiences that I would not have the opportunity to experience anywhere else. Things that will help me for the rest of my life. I’ve also been thinking about how I should live. Do I live the mission rules or the principles of the gospel out of fear of consequence, or do I live them because truly deep down I love the lord and the gospel and I live the way that I do because of that love and because of that faith. If I died tomorrow would I be ready to face my father in heaven?

Anyway, sorry kind of deep thoughts, but obviously it’s been something on my mind as of late. I am fine and well, just really really tired. On Monday the dad of Elder Taufa came down, and we talked with him and everything, and he was actually doing really well. He said that he feels pain for the loss of his son, but that we don’t need to let it bring us down, but we need to continue forward happy of the knowledge we have of the afterlife and the happiness it can bring into the lives of others. He was really cool and positive. We went out to lunch with him and he was cracking jokes and talking with us. It was really cool to see how positive he was and how he brought light to the whole situation.

Now I still have a ton of work to do because now we are preparing everything for our new president, Presidente Ruiz who comes on Saturday, so I have to prepare all of the financial reports and information, so this week is going to be just as stressful. I hope you all have a good week and that you can enjoy some family time in vegas or wherever you may be. I love you guys so much and I know I'm part of our family for eternal reasons, and although we all have problems and we aren’t perfect, god has a plan for us individually and as a family that we can be together forever. Things happen, and life is hard, but as the scripture says, “Men are that they might have joy.”

Les amo,
Elder Henderson 

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