In the last post, Carol Ashton wrote about the far-reaching influence of St. Johns' individuals. Shortly after publishing her post, I read this email about one of our very own SJ boys. To me, it exemplifies our youth and the type of people we send out for the rest of the world to enjoy. I have omitted the names because I believe this could be written about numerous people who are representing our small town in amazing and wonderful ways.
My little family had the privilege of meeting and falling in love with your son while serving his mission in our area. I just had to write you a note and thank you for raising such a remarkable boy!
I cannot begin to express the love and gratitude my family has for your sweet son. He has such an incredible spirit about him. His warm, kind, cheerful disposition has been such a tool in softening hearts and opening doors! He truly represents the Savior, for he is just oozing of charity!
When your son was first transferred into our area, we had the elders for dinner, which we try to do at least weekly. Immediately I felt a connection with him, just knew there was something special about him. The Spirit was strong as the two elders taught us and interacted with our small children that night. After they left, my husband turned to me and said, "I feel so drawn to that missionary...I feel a strong connection with him for some reason." I was shocked he had the same experience I did. We have been around many missionaries. We both served missions and taught at the MTC after our missions. Combined we have probably gotten to teach and serve with a few hundred missionaries. Your son is one of the most special to us!
We had the opportunity of having your son in our home many times, teaching us, eating with us, teaching our neighbors and friends (though none accepted the invitation to accept the missionary lessons :(...) and even had them in our neighborhood when they were snowed in. We had so much fun with them building an igloo on our front lawn. :) And they did miracles in our neighborhood that day, shoveling everyone's walks and driveways, helping our neighbors move in, and spreading light and cheer! :)
Your son is obedient, compassionate, sensitive to the Spirit, and has a special gift in which he can love and connect with people of all ages and circumstances in life. Of course you already know this about him. :) While in our home, he always tried to race us to the kitchen sink and do our dishes. :) My kids absolutely adored every second with him, especially our 2-year-old Annie, who has a crush on him still! :) And he helped my husband and I have greater desires to serve and share the gospel!
You can be very pleased with your son; he is truly a faithful, diligent, incredible missionary! We love him so much. :)