Saturday, October 24, 2009

A Note to Nikki 10/24/09

A Note to Nikki (a lady-in-waiting)
Snow, Lots of it blowing past our window
Temp 1C (32F)
Wind 15-20 mph

Yes Nikki, Elder Bindrup IS dying on November 11 along with the four missionaries from our zone and the four other across Siberia. He has been one of our very favorite missionaries. He went away a couple of transfers ago to Krasnoyarsk and I've only spoken to him on the phone occasionally. I get the sense that November 11 is circled on your calendar; Yes?

Well, thanks for the reminder about all of those 9 who will be leaving. They include Elders Bendixsen, Bindrup, Illarionov, Jessee, Kravchenko, Luddington, and Young. They also include Sisters Kiselyove and Woodhouse. They will each depart this "life" with much different feelings. For some, this will have been a sacrifice and a separation from all they hold dear. For some, they will leave behind almost all they hold dear because they will go home to people who may not value what they have done the last one and a half or two years.

I am sure that you will be part of the welcome home for Elder Bindrup as will other "Nikkis" for these and other American Elders and Sisters coming home every transfer. Knowing Sister Woodhouse and hearing the stories about her family, I can just hear the squeals and laughter as they greet her at the airport. That will be the day parents pray for and siblings anticipate, but I cannot help remembering that the other sister will go "home" to a new city where she will have to find an apartment and a job because she is not welcome back into her own home in her own home town.

I wish, and I hope, that there will be someone who will welcome these eastern European missionaries. I pray that someone will love them and appreciate them, but most of all, I hope, I pray, that they can stay strong in the Gospel the rest of their lives. Their best hope and our best service to them will be to bring more of God's children into the community of saints to love and support each other and help to keep the world away.

Nikki, I do not want to throw cold water on your anticipation after "two whole years". This home-coming will be a triumph and a championship few others in the world will ever experience. The feelings of love and joy are well deserved and part of the result of a job well done. I just am reminding myself that those of us from LDS families and LDS communities around the world that we have little sense of what these eastern European missionaries will face and endure the rest of their lives as they look back on the best two years they will have. We loose too many to the world and I cannot bear to think of my, our, missionaries losing the battle with Satan. I cannot hold back the tears even as I write this, thinking of the struggles and battles they will endure. Life is hard for the saints of Russia and all of the former Soviet countries. I hope you, and the others who read this blog, will remember them in your prayers and not leave them without at least that support.

God's speed Elder Bindrup, and God's speed to all the Elder Bindrups, but I pray for extra angels to be assigned to these native missionaries who will struggle with the world, mostly alone, the rest of their lives. God's speed and special support for you great Sisters and Elders. We love you.

What a great group. What a country


Trisha said...

What a thought. I would have never known unless you were sent there. My prayers are with them all. I would love to be a pen pal if any want or need one. Facebook is great for that. Thanks for the insight.
Much love!

Mom/Cindy said...

We love our missionary friends. They'll always have a friend in the office, a friend in Sacramento, and a friend in "Elder Simmons' special business". Thanks for loving us and taking care of us during our mission in Siberia. You know you're loved.
Thanks for being our forever friends. Sister Simmons

Nikki said...

THANKS Elder Simmons! This totally made my day!