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Church Callings - A Bishop's Gift to Give

Several months ago, I was asked by the a member of my ward's bishopric whether or not my wife and I would be available and interested to be a Ma and Pa for this summer's pioneer trek (a short re-enactment of the 19th Century Mormon Pioneer journey west from Illinois to Salt Lake City) should we be called to do that.  I told him that we always make ourselves available for anything the church asks us to do and that such a calling would be difficult but very rewarding.  I told him that I believed in the inspired calling of our stake president and trusted that if the Lord inspired him to call us, then the Lord would help my wife and me to make our schedules work out.

He pressed gently and indicated that if we would check our availability and assert our interest beforehand, the call would likely be issued.  I told him that I saw the church working in the opposite direction; we will be interested and available should our stake president receive inspiration that it should be us.

Now,…

I Can't, I'm Mormon

Back when the Gateway Mall had just opened, my sister and I were strolling along the upper level when we saw a fellow coming towards us in the opposite direction.  I don't remember if Kimmie noticed or not, but a smirk found its way onto my face as I read the all-caps white writing on his black shirt:

I CAN'T, I'M MORMON
If you live in Utah, where there are lots of Mormons, and still more folks that talk about Mormons, you might have also seen the shirt, and perhaps a similar smirk stole across your face as the kernel of truth struck you as is the nature of these kinds of jokes.
And it is just a joke...right?
Actually, Latter-Day Saints have high expectations for themselves, myself included.  We don't drink addictive teas, coffee, or alcohol.  We don't smoke.  Many eat only a little meat.  We don't have sex before marriage.  We don't have sex with anyone other than our spouse after marriage.  There are several "don't"s that accompany the fait…

A Sermon from a 6-year-old (and an 8-year-old (and their dad))

My 6-year-old son stood and went to the pulpit to read a couple of verses from the scriptures to several dozen listeners.  We had bookmarked the verses so he could open the scriptures right to the page.  While I have shown my children a few times how to find scriptures given a book, chapter, and verse, it takes a while for something that complicated to stick in the head of a 1st grader.  He opened the scriptures to the bookmark and paused.

I was already nervous for him and became more so when his initial pause extended into what seemed a delay.  I wanted him to accomplish this himself, but more than once in those brief seconds, my muscles contracted to pull me up from my chair and go see if he needed any help.

No, stop, my mind said, he can do it.

Excluding my leg muscles, all 150 or so of us waited patiently for about 30 seconds when finally my son began by saying:

"And whoso receiveth you, there I will be also, for I will go before your face.  I will be on your right hand and o…