Mission call at last


Sunset in Saguaro National Park, east of Tucson, Arizona


I was overly optimistic the last time I mentioned Loquita’s coming mission call, so I decided I wouldn’t post about it until I heard  the envelope being ripped open (even if over the phone) and there was actual news to spread. Last night at a little before midnight I awoke befuddled to hear the little ding-ding sound pattern that told us someone was ready for a video conference, and in a few minutes, surrounded by grandparents and cousins in Utah, Loquita began to read the letter as we listened in from Spain.

She’s always been an innovative speller, and she gets creative in the pronunciation department, too. So while we heard “Arizona” without a problem, for a minute we were confused at a mention of what sounded like something Tuscan. It turns out she was just wrestling with Tucson, which is entirely understandable. How did that word come to be pronounced “too-sahn”?* She’ll be a Spanish-speaking missionary, and begins her 18-month service in late September.


Before now I didn’t know much about Arizona, though I admit to a fondness for certain lines from the movie Raising Arizona (chief among them being Son, you got a panty on your head). Now that we’ll have this connection to Tucson, I’ve learned a few things: it is said to have been continuously inhabited for the last 12,000 years, it’s in the Sonoran desert, it’s at roughly the same latitude as Benghazi, Bermuda, Tel Aviv and Tijuana,† and it will soon have a minor league hockey team. Thank you, internet.

Much more to the point, the Tucson area is home to many Spanish speakers. We hope they’ll be kind and welcoming, and that some of them will be willing to listen to our young missionary tell them about how the gospel of Jesus Christ can help them to be happier. Big adventure ahead.

And, because it mentions Arizona, I’ll be taking this opportunity to share with you a movie trailer◊ for a movie you can’t ever see:

*I don’t know how the pronunciation thing happened, but the word appears to derive from an Indian name, Chuk-son, meaning dark spring at the foot of the mountains, or water at the foot of black mountain. Ask two websites, get two answers.

†Looking around for what cities were at about the same latitude was very cumbersome and slow until I discovered this Wikipedia entry, which makes it a snap. The page is sorted by latitude, so you need to bring that number with you, but it’s interesting to see who your latitude neighbors are.

◊It manages to make fun of lots of things at once. It looks like the creators had a really great time making it.

[Images: Wikipedia, Pinterest]


11 thoughts on “Mission call at last

  1. Niiiiiice! She’ll love it, it’s got its own beauty, and she’ll get used to the heat. I know a couple of great families there, too. I’ll tell them to keep their eyes open for her.

    • Thanks, Robin. It’s interesting to think of her in the great Southwest, as she’s generally a cool-weather, shade-loving plant. But missions are all about growing experiences, right? I’m excited for all that she’ll learn. And for all that great Mexican food she’ll have access to, something we don’t find here in Spain. Do you think I can find cilantro? Maybe at the Indian store 🙂

  2. What great news! I had to laugh–could 100% understand and feel part of the the ‘You are called to serve in the Tuck-saun” Arizona mission —it was exactly what Andrea said when she read her letter over the phone to us!! We still get a laugh out of it! Andrea loved serving there and our oldest son, Jason, attended U of AZ there for his Doctorate —so we have visited there quite a few times! She will be great, will have great adventures and most of all she’ll represent the Lord well! Congrats to you all! Hope you’re all doing fine in Spain!
    Naomi and Lance

    • I know when I was doing the research for this post I mistyped the word Tucson just about every time–not only the tongue but the fingers have a hard time with it 🙂

  3. Congrats to all of you! Missionaries are the best! Serving close allows Missionaries to re-visit and stay connected to members and converts, an extra blessing. Keep us posted

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