EMMY

Last Friday I arrived at my office and discovered a beautiful gold box with a hand written note attached. It was from Candice Madsen, the remarkable woman who produced that 30 minute story on Mitchell’s Journey which aired on television last October. I had learned that her story was nominated for a regional Emmy last month, and about a week ago I discovered it won. 

Inside this gold box was the actual Emmy award. In her note she said she wanted our family to have it and encouraged us to “shine on”. I’ve cried several times … both over her kind gesture as well as the price that was paid for such a story to even exist. 

I will forever be grateful for Candice and KSL who shared our son’s story with such honest, yet tender care. Never once did we sense we were being exploited or that their efforts were for ratings or prestige. Instead, they seemed to care more about the story itself and its real impact on others. 

I didn’t know any of the people they featured in this spot until after I lost my son. Over time, each of these remarkable people and families shared some of their experience with me and they have each become dear friends to me – and my life is richer because of it. In fact, I have been blessed to come to know so many of you. I read your every single comment, I ponder your heartbreak and find myself praying specifically for many of you who share your struggles. I am also inspired by your love, compassion and hope. 

Just recently I had an exchange with a woman from a far-away country. She described a bit about her journey to rekindle her faith and had questions. I shared a little about my thoughts and experience with God. She then tried a few things I suggested and she wrote back that she immediately sensed something different. A month later she wrote me again and said she was experiencing an inner awaking. My heart was overflowing. 

I am always grateful to hear how Mitchell’s Journey is making a difference. The Gabriel Award and now the Emmy … it is nice to know other institutions recognize this little story on the internet. Yet, in truth, what motivates me aren’t accolades or the honors of society; instead, I am deeply moved when I discover your private stories of faith, hope and healing. It is the invisible stories … stories that exist far under the radar of Hollywood and news circuits that move my soul. 

I am inspired by you.

One day, all that society has worked so hard to build will come crashing to the earth – everything will become nothing. The only thing that will remain is what we have become. What we make of our souls.

I have a long way to go – but I have my Father and the hope of seeing my sweet son again to guide me.

instagram.com/mitchells_journey/

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For those that haven’t seen KSL's piece on Mitchell's Journey, here is a link:https://www.ksl.com/?sid=31804270

https://www.facebook.com/Candice-Madsen-KSL-417742541757218/?fref=ts

http://rockymountainemmy.org/

THE GABRIEL AWARD

A few months ago (the day before Mitchell’s birthday, in fact) I was informed that KSL, our local NBC news affiliate, was given the Gabriel Award for their short documentary on Mitchell’s Journey. According to the organization, "The single most important criterion of a Gabriel winning film or program is its ability to uplift and nourish the human spirit." 

When Candice Madsen, a producer-turned-friend, told me about the honor they received for their work (her work) on Mitchell’s Journey, I wept. I wept deeply for my son and wished there was some other way. At the same time my heart was breaking, I was awash with a feeling of peace – for I knew the work of the soul was far more important than that of our mortal bodies. Still, I missed my little boy and fell to my knees in a most curious blend of grief and gratitude. Grief that I lost him, gratitude that I had him.

I do not seek attention or recognition. As I’ve said before, I wished only to live out my life in the quite of our backyard and comfort of our living room … invisible to the world. This page … it was only meant to be a quiet place to update friends and family. And though it has grown a little since then, I hope it remains a quiet place of reflection on life & love, souls and suffering and our Father’s tender mercies. 

 

THIS SUNDAY: A SPECIAL ON MITCHELL'S JOURNEY

This sunday KSL (a local news station) is airing a short documentary on Mitchell's Journey and its impact on others.

This is what they posted: 
"1:30-2 p.m. Mitchell’s Journey: A grieving father’s blog, about his young son’s journey towards death, goes viral. The messages in this blog flood the world with hope and provide comfort and direction for people of many faiths."

I was able to see a small segment of what they produced a few weeks ago and I was humbled to hear what others had to say about Mitchell's Journey and how it affected them. 

They will be streaming the story on Mitchell's Journey live at 1:30PM (MDT) at this link:
http://www.ksl.com/?sid=31803269&nid=1016&title=special-ksl-general-conference-programming-will-focus-on-faith-family-and-miracles

OTHER SHORT NEWS SPOTS
Here are a few other stories they wrote about Mitchell's Journey along the way:

Boy with muscular dystrophy inspires thousands through Facebook
February 20, 2013
http://www.ksl.com/?sid=24151387

Former BYU football star inspired by Utah boy's courageous fight
February 27, 2013
http://www.ksl.com/?sid=24215840

'Mitchell's Journey' comes to an end after inspiring thousands
March 2nd, 2013
http://www.ksl.com/?sid=24255769

Herriman City declares day in honor of Mitchell Jones
March 28, 2013
http://www.ksl.com/?sid=24581282

'Miles for Mitchell' to honor life of inspiring boy with muscular dystrophy
May 3, 2013
http://www.ksl.com/?sid=25032422

Parents of boy in 'Mitchell's Journey' reflect on their experience
January 1, 2014
http://www.ksl.com/?sid=28212008

MITCHELL’S JOURNEY DOCUMENTARY

Last night Natalie and I participated in the final leg of a short documentary that is being produced about Mitchell’s Journey. It will air in October and I’ll be sure to post a link to it on this page.

A few months ago I received a message from Candice Madsen who is a producer for KSL, the same news group and producer that aired stories about Mitch while he was still with us. She wanted to see how we felt about them telling more about Mitchell’s Journey and the effect it has had on others. We were so humbled by their request – and because we trust them we gave them permission. Since then they have flown around the United States and interviewed some people who have been touched on some level. 

At some point during the interview I was taking snaps with my iPhone and everyone started to laugh and take pictures at the same time. It is my deep belief one can never take too many photos. This was the photo Candice took while Natalie and I were being interviewed by Brooke Walker, a co-host to Studio 5 and the narrator to the Mitchell’s Journey piece. She was also so loving and kind.

Although we have had little to do with the production of this documentary, save pointing the producers to a few followers, participating on some level has been a tender and humbling experience. Listening to my wife talk about Mitch and our family and her philosophy on life reminded me why I fell so in love with her many years ago. 

I sure love my wife and I want to be more like her. She is so loving and kind, wise and thoughtful. I am so grateful that she puts up with me and I hope at the end of my days, when I am old and about to see my son again, that I can look into my wife’s eyes and know I did my very best to love and serve her. For the best way to honor my son is to love his mother … and love her, I do.