With each departing group I say to Sister Sweeney, “It just can’t get any better than these Elders and Sisters!” Truly, we feel this departing group had a tremendously powerful impact on our mission. Such leaders! Many of these Elders and Sisters performed miracles as they entered areas where missionary work had been struggling and lifted it by their faith and works. Sister Thompson excelled in this effort along with Sister Crandall (who had a baptism after being ET’ed (emergency transferred) into her final area with only a few weeks left). Sister Andrus and Sister Stevens became seasoned trainers who leave behind a legacy of strong Sister missionaries.
Sister Christensen opened up Reserve/Luna New Mexico to missionary service after never having FT missionaries there. She and her other two companions literally sang their way into the hearts of the people there – singing the national anthem at basketball games, inaugurations and at porch steps all over this beautiful and remote county. Elder Keeler likewise re-opened Cibecue Branch for missionary work. Cibecue is on the White Mountain Apache Reservation and has struggled to retain it’s 500 members. Now, with seminary re-started, addiction recovery classes well along and Sacrament Meeting attendance doubling, Elder Keeler can take some justifiable pride in his labors.
Elder Corbridge served as one of the Mission Assistants and are great golfing partner. He was a model of dignified obedience. Elders Swanson and Pope along with Sisters Faw and Wheelwright trained and led Spanish work in multiple areas in the mission. They were exceedingly powerful in their testimonies and vision of the work that needed to be done among the Spanish speaking members and nonmembers laboring so “that every man shall hear the fulness of the gospel in his own tongue, and in his own language, through those who are ordained unto this power, by the administration of the Comforter, shed forth upon them for the revelation of Jesus Christ.” (D&C 90:11)
Elder Armatage, Elder Carter and Sister Carroll and Sister Yates each labored in both the Mountains and the Valley and all made major contributions and exercised exceeding faith. We are proud of them!