Lizzy gets a mission call

It started with weeks of waiting. Dozens of texts between Ruth, Lizzy and me: “How’s your mailbox?”


Even until Monday afternoon, when we’d decided around 4 p.m. it just wasn’t coming.

And then the call from Lizzy at 4:09, “It’s here!”

We’d already made a plan to open it at our house– a practical decision which was hard on Ruth and Bill and Lizzy’s younger siblings. Sending Lizzy to Utah for weekends and then to school, tugged on their hearts enough, but missing events, milestones… that’s harder.

And there’s nothing quite like receiving a mission call. You can be called to anywhere in the world, anywhere.

Lizzy’s grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins arrived and everyone made their guesses: Germany, Texas, Japan, Peru, Idaho, Russia….


Mary hooked up Skype and got my phone ready to facetime.

She made sure everyone said ‘hello’ to Lizzy’s family in San Diego.

“Hi Ruth!”

Jessie dialed in from Columbia.

In fact, I think we had just as many people watching on phones as in person.

Finally the big moment came…

Cochabamba, Bolivia! She reports June 21st to the Peru, MTC. The day after her nineteenth birthday.

We’re all going to miss her. Lizzy lights up a room. Completely nonjudgmental, Lizzy sees people as God sees them. She looks straight through their mistakes and foibles, offering love and encouragement to everyone.

Oh we’re going to miss her.

But she’s ready. The look on her face says it all.

Lizzy Gets A Call from Ben Lehnardt on Vimeo.

darling Ben made a fabulous video.



  1. Anne Marie

    March 7, 2016

    Congratulations to darling, beautiful Lizzie!! How exciting! She looks like an angel. Wishing her the very, very best as she heads to Bolivia.

    My Taylor just submitted his papers last night so in just a few weeks, we will be the parents FaceTiming during his big moment (while he opens his envelope at my brother’s house). Oh, I can totally feel for your sister. It’s so hard to be hundreds of miles away during such a joyful moment. I know your sister must feel so much gratitude for the circle of love Lizzie has there in Utah. My heart is full tonight as I think of my brother’s family and my in-laws loving my boy while he’s far from home.

  2. Sam Andersen

    March 18, 2016

    That is awesome!! I served my mission there as well. Absolutely love Bolivia, and the people there will give you the shirt off their back. I would go there again in a heartbeat.

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