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  • Writer's pictureVivian Foley

Our Longest Day Ever

The day to leave for Singapore finally arrived! Early this morning, we left for the Kansas City Airport around 5:30 am. Everything seemed to be going well and our flight was rolling to the runway when the pilot said they were having some type of engine trouble. We then sat on the jetway for about 40 minutes while they tried various things. They didn’t work and so we headed back to the gate and deplaned while repairs were made for the next four hours. As a result, we missed our connecting flight to Singapore and are currently waiting for the next flight to Singapore. It is “just a short” twelve hours after our planned flight, so we have been waiting in airports for most of the day and, as of this writing, still have a 17.5-hour flight to go! By the time all is said and done we may wind up going 48 hours between sleeping in a bed.

As we sat on the runway, we talked about the early pioneers of our church traveling in perilous conditions: from Missouri to Illinois to Utah, and from Utah to and from the far corners of the world. We certainly can’t complain to them about our extra twelve hour wait to travel halfway around the world, with all they went through. We have been richly blessed to have in our legacy many stories of missionaries and others who sacrificed so much to serve the Lord. We haven’t sacrificed that much yet, so we are trying to keep a positive attitude despite being tired.

This past week we have had “all the feels” as we have both learned more about our mission and said our goodbyes to family. We are sad and happy, excited and nervous, patient and frustrated, energized and exhausted, calm and tense. It feels a little bit like anticipating that first day of school or a new job following a long wait. We also know that our family is feeling much of the same and we are SO grateful for their support in this adventure.

This week I was able to connect with more of the mission leaders that we will work with. For now, we will be working most directly with missionaries and mission leaders in Singapore, Thailand, India, Pakistan, Indonesia, and Malaysia. We really appreciate the recent emphasis on calling the mission president and sister mission leader as “mission leaders”. This terminology acknowledges the vital work of the sister mission leaders. In our experience we have already seen that many of the sister mission leaders head up the work of the mission health council. Their eyes and insights are vital in seeing where a missionary may be struggling. The mission leaders we will work with are amazing and dedicated people who voluntarily give of their time to serve for three years as leaders of the young missionaries serving throughout the world.

My miracle story of the week doesn’t have anything to do with our mission, but I think it is a worthy story anyways. My younger brother Rulon has been divorced for several years. During the week that he was in Blackfoot, Idaho for my father’s funeral, he met up with the woman that was his first date in high school: Dianne Nilsson. She in turn had been a widow for several years. They started talking and rekindled a spark from many years ago. After a few months of talking and flying back and forth across the country to see each other, they became engaged. They had planned to be married on December 30th, but also kept teasing everyone about how they were going to elope. Well, you might have guessed where this story is heading: on November 27th they went ahead and got married. We are so excited to welcome Dianne to the family, and we love seeing how happy they are together. It was a miracle that came out of a time of sadness when one of Dianne’s daughters saw my dad’s obituary and mentioned it to her mom.

I am so grateful for the many tender mercies in my life and the life of my family. I know that God is aware of us and tries our patience while also giving us sweet and tender blessings along the way.

Photos (l-r, t-b)

  1. How in the world can you say goodbye to this guy's smiles?

  2. Or for that matter, any of these beautiful grandchildren (PC: Lori Garcia)

  3. Church service project doing highway cleanup.

  4. Traveling "light" - our lives for the next 18 months in five suitcases

  5. Getting ready to take off after sitting in KC for five hours.

  6. A really great resource: could just be called "Adjusting to Life" as it is helpful to everyone!

  7. The reviews on the house rental are coming in and they are wonderful! It's a big relief to have it in good hands.

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1 Comment

Scott Morris
Scott Morris
Dec 06, 2023

I hope the remainder of your travel goes as smooth as it can. You both have a great outlook on this opportunity and I‘m sure it will help as you do great things for the Lord.

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