A Letter to My Friends in the Gospel – November 2, 2014

This was published in a news letter distributed the first week of the month to Elder Schafer’s home congregation.

Elder Dreyton Schafer spent his first six weeks in the Guatemala MTC. On the Tuesday before October General Conference, he was assigned to his first area, Las Delicias. Missionaries in his mission email during meetings at the church which usually occur on Tuesdays. He received a new assignment last Wednesday as transfers came early this round so that the missionaries leaving in December would be able to return home before Christmas. He didn’t know where that assignment was going to be when he wrote the note below.


Dear Ward Family,

Mission Life. I have a different idea of what it is now after 10 weeks than I did when I left. Now I realize that going on a mission is truly being willing to follow the Lord`s plan for you. Here, unlike in my pre-mission world, we really have no control. Every day we set appointments, and have plans. But they don`t always happen. Instead we find ourselves teaching a person we just met, in a house we`ve never seen before.

Or like tomorrow. I have changes, a transfer. I`m leaving my first area, and I have no idea where I`ll be going, or who my companion will be until we go to a meeting tomorrow. And right after that meeting, I leave for my new area. But it`s okay. Remember the song? There`s surely somewhere in a Lowly Place in Earth`s Harvest Field so wide, where I may labor through life`s short day for Jesus the Crucified. 

This is a Lowly Place. I don`t say that disparagingly. Rather, I mean that Guatemala is a place few people think about in the world. The comings and goings of these people don`t make the news. But they`re children of God, and they listen. The Spanish translation of the third verse is different from our English hymnbook; it says, translated literally back to EnglishIt may be somewhere in vineyards of my Lord, where I can faithfully serve Christ my Savior.

So trusting my all to thy tender care, and knowing thou lovest me, I`ll do thy will with a heart sincere. And the last line is what everyone, missionary or member needs to do for Him. I`ll be what YOU want me TO BE (Emphasis added)

Love Elder Schafer


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