Only a few of our Arizona Scottsdale Missionaries have been picked up by parents at the end of their mission and been driven home. None have ridden their bikes home!
Elder Ortiz finished his mission on Monday, May 4th. Due to visa issues, he was called to serve a full time mission very close to where he lived in central Phoenix. In fact, one of the hazards of his service was running into people he knew at Wal-Mart and other places! But, he never let those things bother him.
Elder Ortiz approached me several months ago with an unusual request. Since much of his mission was in bike areas, he thought it would be more meaningful if he reported to the mission home on the day of his departure, loaded his belongings into his family’s vehicle and then rode home on his bike. There was something very right about his request. After all, a mission is to literally preach the gospel to your friends and neighbors – to warn them as the scriptures teach.
So, on the morning after a healthy Spring rain (note the puddle in the parking lot) with relatively cool weather (70s) Elder Ortiz grabbed his Book of Mormon in one hand, waved goodbye to the Mission Office staff and rode the 20 miles home. I bet the Book of Mormon got placed along the way and some fortunate missionary is about to get a referral.