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June 14, 2010

The Missionary Movement

Unless I someday have two sets of octuplets within 18 to 24 months of each other, I'll never know as many people who are about to leave on missions (or recently left) as I do right now.

The list kicks off with the females ...

The girl I dated:
Brooke Deem (Mendoza, Argentina)

A girl I went on a few dates with:
Kalie Vickers (Independence, Missouri)

A girl I could have gone on a date with but was too slow in pursuing:
Elizabeth Cosper (Nashville, Tennessee)

A girl that lived with the girl I dated:
Jenny Adams (Philippines)

And a girl I worked with (alas, no dating ties here):
Megan Hanselman (LA, California - hopefully she has to teach a lot of sad Laker fans ...)

Then on the male side of things there's the fellows I lived with ...

DJ Stringham (Vina del Mar, Chile - that lucky jerk)
CJ Stringham, unrelated to DJ, and exact opposites size wise (Manchester, England)
Ben Workman (Destination to be determined)
Kye McLeary (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Jordan Stenquist (Mecaio, Brazil)
Johnny Harper (somehwere in Canada)
Collen Mortensen (Berlin, Germany - though I'm not sure that that is the correct mission or the correct name spelling; we played Halo more together than we actually talked to each other.)

... a beloved Peruvian who slept on our couch ...
Franco Arellano (Lima, Peru - fittingly)

... and a guy I drove out of our apartment due to my uncleanliness (I still haven't gotten over this, by the way):
Adam Peterson (Philippines)


As for this fab fourteen, they have two things in common:

A) They realized I was cool and chose to become my friends

B) They are all studs

I'll admit that point A is probably false; B on the other hand is most definitely true. Each of these fourteen are extraordinary. We're talking about successful (Brooke), intelligent (DJ), attractive (Franco) 19- to 21-year olds who have the means to pursue virtually anything they could want in the whole world, and what do they choose to do?

Teach the message of the Restored Gospel.

Dump the world and what it has to offer. This group opts to trade family, friends and comfort for blisters, sweaty pits and rejection - just for a shot at telling someone that they know God called Joseph Smith to be a prophet.

I've never been good at expressing my feelings, but you 14 have to know how impressed I am by you (a true feat, considering I usually am only impressed by BYU football and Stephen Colbert). Your willingness to sacrifice the immediate future for service to God inspires me. That's the one part of this exodus that benefits me - a shlum like myself needs all the inspiration he can get. Thus my thanks for your examples.

Still, being an overly-sappy fellow, I'll miss you all. None more than my four freshman roomies of course.

Really, who'd have thought that living with pure freshman as a senior in college would turn out to be one of the best decisions I've ever made?

I didn't. 

But it was.
So how do you end a somewhat random, semi-mushy, 14-person tribute? I figured the best bet would be to just simply wish everyone luck, but I quickly realized that'd be unnecessary.

You're good enough already.


  1. whoa! Spencer that's quite a load, for being an old fogey such as yourself. jk!

  2. I mean quite a load of missionaries to know!