January 22, 2017
As we finished Stake Conference today, a man walked quickly up to me. He greeted me as I stepped down from the stand. He was a gentleman in his 70’s, I believe, in a crisply ironed white shirt, tie, nice slacks, and shiny shoes. He gave me a hug (all men give “Mexican hugs”), and asked me if I remembered him. I hate it when they say that ‘cause I am lousy at remembering names and faces!!!
With his smiley face and moist eyes, he said he was sorry for the interview that I had to have with him over two years ago. He reminded me that he was one who I had to write a letter of permission to be baptized to President Monson! Then I remembered him!! His was the story of about 50 years ago. He lived in a rural hilly area somewhere in Mexico, and 3 men had invaded his house and kidnapped his little sister. He said he searched for days and days, tracking them and looking through valleys, mountains, and countryside. Then one day, he found their “camp”, and horrifyingly discovered that they had just taken the life of his little sister. A fight ensued. Two men fled the scene, but the other one commenced “mortal combat” with this gentleman. They fought until this kidnapper lost his life to the brother of the kidnapped girl. Police arrived, surveyed the scene and heard the story. They told this man to return home and took no action.
Long story short, I sent the letter to Salt Lake City. My start of the letter to President Monson was, "Well, this will sound like a real live wild west story...." ; the First Presidency granted baptismal permission, and here he was today, almost 2 years later, at Stake Conference, a priesthood bearer, all in his finest Sunday faithful clothing!! Yes…this is a great experience!!!! My heart was warmed!!!