Dear Brother and Sister Claypool,
My son is a missionary in the Kyiv Ukraine missionary, and is the district leader in the area of Kyiv where your son is now serving. In his letter home on Monday, our son spoke of your son and I was so impressed that I wanted to share his comments with you.
This past week was a really good week. It was without a doubt the most stressful week of my life, and I got almost zero sleep, but I saw the hand of the Lord in it incredibly powerfully! So to start, I will answer a major question that I have been asked. Yes, the Donetsk missionaries did evacuate to our mission, and yes, they are now serving in our mission. To go into a little more detail about that, they have been integrated into our mission, and are serving around, and with, us. Honestly, they are really great!
So yeah, that was probably the main part of this week. Donetsk is now in Kiev. I was also very blessed by the Lord to get really good missionaries! A couple of them are struggling right now, understandably. I know that I would be very distraught if I had to leave the place that I love so much and go somewhere else. But they are making do. I am trying my best to help them acclimate, and I think it is working pretty well. They truly are very good missionaries, especially one. This is another reason why I am super grateful to the Lord. Elder Claypool is his name. He is in his 15th transfer, and I have never in my entire life met a better missionary. He is everything I could ever want to be. He is smiling 24/7, and is ALWAYS happy, but I have never seen someone more focused on something than he is on missionary work. He is the only person who is not down in the dumps right now, and he has the most reason to be. Two days before he came here, he set three baptismal dates with people, and then, out of the blue, he found out that he would be leaving them to come here. You know what he has done here? He has talked to basically every person he has seen, and not let the move affect him one bit. I don't know if I can put into words the amount of respect I have for him. I have seen good, even great missionaries before-- our mission is filled with them-- but he is something special. He is also great because he doesn't act like he is in his 15th transfer. He is the most humble, modest person I have seen. He was the AP at one point during his mission, and yet now, he acts as though he is just a normal missionary. He doesn't try to take over and do things himself because he was an AP; he just silently helps and gives advice when asked. I don't know how to explain it, but I can say honestly, I have never met a missionary that I respect more than I do Elder Claypool. I hope that I can be half the missionary that he is by my 15th transfer. "
I'm sure your son must be saddened by having to leave his mission, but if he ever wonders, please let him know that he has already done a wonderful work in Kyiv by being such an example. I know an eighteen-year-old district leader (and his parents) will be forever grateful to Elder Claypool. And thanks to you for rearing such a wonderful son.