Saturday, October 22, 2011

We Have an ELDER! Now We Have to Say Goodbye!

Elder Spencer Olsen - Honduras, Tegucigalpa, Reports Oct 12, 2011
Monday, Oct 10, 2011, we gathered around the living room in our home to set Spencer Olsen apart to be a missionary for the Lord for the next two years. What a spiritual experience that was. The President Bluthe asked dad to conduct the meeting. We sang Called to Serve and Grandma Linda offered the opening prayer. Dad then turned the time over to President Bluthe. He said a few words and then asked Dad to share his testimony. How proud we are of our Dad and the example he has set for the family. Then Mom was asked to share her testimony. She just hopes that she has been an example and teacher to her son so that he can go out and preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Then Bishop Webb was asked to share his testimony. What a great man he is and a great influence he has been in Spencer's life. Then President Bluthe set Spencer apart as a missionary. What a beautiful prayer it was. Many things were told to Spencer that will help him throughout his mission, and we all know that he will be blessed and protected. He will have the Spirit with him to spread the word. Then Spencer was asked to share his testimony. How proud we are of him. He is a great young man. It was at that time that we felt that he is ready to go. There was such a sweet spirit in our home. And we are so thankful that we have the opportunity to have a missionary go out and represent our family, his leaders who have taught him well, but especially Jesus Christ. President Bluthe said a few more things, he turned the time back to Dad. He asked Sam, Spencer's mentor, to give the closing prayer and then it was official. WE HAVE A MISSIONARY.
We were happy to have Mom & Dad, the boys, Aunt Shelly and Uncle Mike, Grandma Linda, Bishop Webb and Sam there to share this special occasion with us. Just before the Stake President left, he had one arm around Spencer and shaking Dad's hand and said, "Now, you're going to make sure he will have a companion with him and that he goes to bed by 10:30. Missionary rules apply as soon as you become a missionary. That means no t.v., music, alone time, but especially hugging girls! Of course he could hug his Mom, Grandma, and Aunt Shelly.
Tuesday was an emotional day. We were flying him up to Provo on Tuesday night, and he was going to stay with our cousin, Jan. She was going to take him to the MTC on Wed. She has 5 boys and has done this many times, so we knew that he would be in good hands. We had a few more things to do to get ready. Inigio, our apartment manager, wanted to see him, so Spencer went with Dad to California St. (our nickname of our apartments) to say goodbye. He called Grandpa and Lauren and talked to both of them while his last batch of clothes were washing. He had to finish packing, do the power of attorney and his 2009 taxes (long story-thanks to Aunt Shelly they got done). With all that needed to be done, he still found time to go play racquette ball with Connor one last time. We got everything done right up to the last minute, of course. And then the time came.

We were going to go to Kona Grill for sushi and calamari before we left, but we ran out of time. We had been to just about every eating establishment in the last month or so that we could think of except Kona. I guess he'll have to just dream about it! So we went to Ned's Sub. The owner had served his mission several years ago and was honored that we would come to his place for Spencer's "last meal." He gave us all free drinks and chips in his honor. We also bought a tee shirt, and the guy said' "Wear that tee-shirt proud in Honduras!"
We arrived at the airport about an hour early. We sat around for about 15 minutes and then Spencer really started getting antsy. He just wanted to go. The hugging began. Mom didn't want to let go, but it had to be done! We walked him to security. Dad kept saying, come on Spencer, just one tear. I want to see a tear. He turned around and gave us a big smile and wave and turned back around and walked away. That was it. Mom loves the last picture of him! She will keep it in her mind until he gets home.
He called us when he go to Jan's that evening. And then he called in the morning. He spent the morning his favorite Youth leader, Chris (he moved to Provo), and went to his favorite hot dog stand. He went to Walmart for a few last things (a mattress pad cover and some goodies). And then he went to his cousins Italian Place for his last, last meal. He called us from there but he was done saying goodbye. We told him we loved him one more time and that was really it! Jan called about 15 min after she dropped him off. She was so excited for him. He looked so happy and the Elders that were assigned to him, took his bags and walked him away. She said he is going to be a great missionary. Have I said it enough....He's going to be a GREAT MISSIONARY


  1. This is wonderful for Spencer and a great time in your life to know that you have raised a young man worthy to be a missionary. We are proud of you and him.

  2. I'd love to act like a man's man, but I am definitely a little watery eyed reading this one. You guys did a great job raising Spencer. He is an outstanding missionary who really does love the people. Another thing that I was really able to see was the joy that he had being there. There are so many missionaries who go and just look absolutely miserable the entire two years, but your son was able to find the balance between fun and work. That balance is Love. He loves the people so much and that is truly what makes the work a fun and enjoyable thing to do. I'm honestly so happy that I was able to be with him and get to be such good friends with him. You guys did an amazing job raising this kid.