For the first 24 hours, I checked my phone's email probably every 20 minutes. I'm not sure what I was expecting knowing I probably wouldn't hear from him for a week. Thankfully, God knows I am not that patient. I heard from Elder Haycock early this morning. Here's what his first letter said:'
I'll write more later.
Elder Samuel Allan Haycock
2005 N 900 E Unit 136
Provo UT 84602
Love you lots,
Elder Samuel Haycock
Well I breathed a sigh of relief that he'd made it through the first 2 days. And then I thought, "Doesn't he know I have LOADS of questions?"
Luckily, I heard again from him about an hour later.
Arua ngai Elder Haycock. The past two days have been awesome. Couple of things to keep in mind Fridays are my P-days. If you will e-mail me Mondays I can print off the email and reply to it on Friday. I'm so excited these past two days have been a huge change for me. My new companion is Elda Murri he's from Sandy Utah. Yesterday he was given the assignment of district leader and I received the assignment of senior companion. Later tonight my companion and I have the privilege of teaching Brother Bateriki in Kiribati. My branch president, President Willis, gave us the challenge to develop the gift of Love and explained that this gift is a gift from the Spirit. Our district consists of 11 Elders and 1 Sister and all of us are laboring in Kiribati. In our dorm there is Elda Murri and I, Elda Hollbrok and Elda Schoene, and Elda Jackson and Elda Rowsell.
I know that I have been called before the earth was created and choose good and set apart to testify of Iesu Kristo. I love my new companion. I love all of you guys there. I ataia bwa e tangiriko te Atua. In the name of Iesu Kristo. Amen.
Also tell Josh Happy early Birthday.
And then, sweetest of all, he attached 3 pictures of his district and companion, Elda Murri. Happy Day!
To be set apart lends itself to being different, made unique or special, or elevated to importance. We were thankful to be able to witness Sam being set apart as an Elder, a missionary and representative and special witness of Jesus Christ for the next two years. He was given a very special blessing with many promises regarding his purpose and spiritual gifts which gave comfort and gratitude to Heavenly Father for knowing what Samuel would need, but also his parent's worries and cares. We are very thankful to President Farnsworth for his support and love as he set him apart to become Elder Haycock. I am not sure if you can tell, but that glow and love and excitement you see coming from Elder Haycock's face, that my friends is joy. Pure joy that he knows with confidence his purpose and the love he has already for the journey he is about to embark on. Such a sweet moment as a mom to witness this.
We didn't have much time left to spend with Elder Haycock before he left and we moved to another part of the Lord's vineyard, so we took great advantage of it. We spent many days in different temples together learning and preparing, we played racquetball with siblings and loved every minute of it, we spent time with grandparents and cousins, neighbors and friends, and finally, we packed everything we owned into a 53 foot semi and hauled it up to Montana. The sunsets and wildlife didn't disappoint. The week leading up to Sam's departure was a bit chaotic, but we made the best of it and enjoyed our time spent with Great Grandma Haycock and others.
Elder Samuel Haycock
I am called to serve a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. This blog is about my adventures in sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ for the next two years in the Republic of Kiribati.
Rachel Haycock - I am the mother of 6 amazing children and the lucky wife of a dear, sweet man. I love to write, read, cook, teach and sew. I hope you feel the Spirit of the Lord as you read about Elder Haycock's adventures in sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ.