Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Tender Mercies

One of the more traumatic moments of our mission happened Saturday, as we were emptying groceries from the car.   "Hey, do you have my iPad back there?   I can't find it by my seat."   "No, you had it with you when you returned the trolley."   "No, I thought you put it in when you loaded the car."

My calm husband then quietly said, "Get in the car."   We raced frantically back to Sainsbury's, bustling with business on this, a 'game day' for Preston's North End Football Club.  I prayed inwardly the whole distance back.  The more my tears welled up, the more my companion tried to reassure me that 'it's going to be okay'.   But when we looked into the empty string of trolleys, my heart sank.   Speaking to the Customer Service girl inside, my words seemed ridiculous even to me: "Has anyone turned in an ipad in a black leather cover?"

As we looked despondently through the string of carts outside one more time before we got into our car, I couldn't believe how understanding Elder Meese was.   He could easily have stated the obvious ("When you leave it sitting on the edge like that it's harder to see it." or "How could you be so careless?   Do you realize how much those cost?!" or any number of replies)  I just knew I'd been responsible for losing our photos, calendar, scriptures, notes, and connection with home.   And no, at the time it didn't occur to me that we could retrieve it from the laptop.   I began to cry in earnest.

As this was happening, we heard a voice ask from across the parking lot, 'Are you all right?'   'Are you missing something?'   (I must be making a scene)   "Would you be missing this?"   A man and wife held up the black case as they walked toward us.   In thick Irish accent, he explained that they'd found it in the trolley and were writing a note to leave in the store telling someone where to retrieve it.   The husband explained that you can't always trust security, and they wanted to make sure this got back to the owner.

I barely stopped sobbing long enough to thank them, and they let us have the note they were finishing.   We couldn't get home and to our knees fast enough that afternoon.

This is the couple. We met them yesterday when we took a 'Thank You' to them. They invited us to sit a while. They asked about our mission, assured us they were practicing Catholics, then said some very kind things about the 'immaculate young men' who came to their door a few months ago. We talked to them about the upcoming pageant (they seemed interested!), and they took our phone number after we offered to get them tickets and take them!  They agreed to have a prayer with us. We may see them again.

Speaking of the pageant, check out the marquee that's going up in anticipation of the July 31 opening night!   It's pretty jaw-dropping to all of us who expected a 'tent' of sorts.   Elder Meese is recording this  Saturday and Sunday (basically all day) with the choir.   Quite the way to spend his birthday, huh?  I don't think he'd have it any other way!      

It was a very exciting Family Home Evening this week.   There's Jason on the left, who continues to be a 'missionary' every waking moment.   The others in the group include our Elders, our amazing Ward Mission Leader, a new young man investigating the church, a brand new visitor to our Family Home Evening group from Liberia, a young member we were so happy to see after a long absence - she's from the Congo - and two terrific ward members.    The young man at the right delivers pizzas ....and gives the person a card as well.   It resulted in another new person joining our gatherings!
The young adults are just the hope of this ward!   We love being with them.   I used to think their evenings should just be young people, but they always insist we be there and ask where we were if we miss.   So we now just feel 'at home' with everyone.  


So many more things we could say, but it seems time goes so fast.   We have an appointment with a member this morning.   If I don't close this now,
it will be ANOTHER day until I post.   Just know
that you all go with us everywhere.  God bless
you and keep watching over you all!  


  1. Terrific update, and so glad to hear that your prayers were answered about your iPad, and that you met some kindhearted people in the process. Also, that necklace is great--I hadn't seen it before! Always good to hear your updates from across the pond. We are thinking of you.

  2. It's times like this that we remember just how much Heavenly Father loves us each individually. Losing an ipad? Small in the eternal scheme of things but Heavenly Father knew it was important to you. Very reaffirming. And Mom, you have a true gift with words! It wasn't until I read this post that I realized how truly gifted you are in that department! Keep it coming!

  3. I get to read your postings by linking to Megan's blogspot. I LOVE reading of your experiences!! It reminds me of my mission in England so many years ago. Thanks for keeping us informed of your activities. (We still miss you in the Ward, too.)

  4. Wow! How amazing. So great to hear about this experience. We love you.