The Fort Walton Beach Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints would like to introduce Heidi and Mike Hendricks, their newest missionary senior couple.

They will be working in the Destin/Fort Walton Beach community. Their area of expertise is teaching English as a second language to the local Spanish speaking population. To accomplish their goals they are using a program called “Daily Dose” English classes two nights a week in Fort Walton and hope to develop other programs in the neighboring communities and churches.

Heidi is a Brigham Young University graduate with a major in Spanish and teaching English as a second language. While a student she taught at the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah, training students who served missions throughout the world. Heidi became a highly ranked global blogger within the church as she raised her three children for 16 years. Heidi considers her meeting and marrying Mike to be a miracle. After they met, they learned that their great-grandfathers knew each other in the year 1888 in the small town of Cove, Utah, and served in the church bishopric together.

Mike and his former wife Chris were married 46 years and had five children before she lost her life to cancer. He taught school for some years and then became a contractor and built many and varied structures. He raised and trained quarter horses for more than 40 years as an expensive hobby. Hendricks has served as a community and church leader for many years, most recently as a member of the Stake presidency in Goshen, Utah. Mike said he is just a broken down old cowboy, but Heidi corrects him and asserts he is a talented, hard-working senior missionary.

The Hendricks were impressed to serve their Lord and Savior by becoming a volunteer for their church for 18 months. They were assigned by President Monson to serve in the Destin/Fort Walton locale which is in the Tallahassee Mission. When they were called to serve they left eight children and 14 grandchildren, including a daughter on a mission, in Ohio.

“Our desire is lift and bless and serve wherever we can. We do humanitarian construction work, create and send a newsletter to the Hispanics in our church ward, visit and help members who are struggling, help with gathering food and clothing for those in need, and go on visits with the young missionaries who are serving in the area,” Heidi said. “There are more than 70,000 missionaries serving throughout the world at their own expense, who put their lives on hold for two years to serve their church. We are thrilled and grateful to be here and look forward to serving in this beautiful area.”

English classes are held on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 7-7:30 p.m. at the chapel at 339 Lake Drive in Fort Walton Beach. New classes will begin Jan. 2. Call 862-3263 for information.