I’m Sorry to Call You with This News on Christmas Eve

JS called Saturday morning to let them know that he was sick to his stomach and couldn’t make it that night. Like Lauren, he was a type 1 diabetic. Sunday, he did not show for church, and Lauren told the man to call him. He did and got only voicemail. Monday was the day ofContinue reading “I’m Sorry to Call You with This News on Christmas Eve”

The Vision of the Valley of Cancerous Bones

He is sitting on the upper deck of the lake house in Maine. His wife is in the kitchen with her sisters making dinner. Towels are drying on the rail in front of him. He opens the Bible to Ezekiel 37. Most Mormons like it for the stick of Joseph and the stick of Judah.Continue reading “The Vision of the Valley of Cancerous Bones”

I’m Sure It Wasn’t THAT Word

The first counselor in the Primary presidency is leading a group of children through the church hallway to a classroom. She has a large smile on her face. “Grant spent sharing time telling everyone that you called him the F word.” The man is standing next to his office after interviewing a youth. “I’m sureContinue reading “I’m Sure It Wasn’t THAT Word”

So This Is It

Right after the session they are seated next to each other on a couch in the celestial room. It is summer before what he thinks will be his final two semesters of college when he will finish with an English major and a Spanish minor. But as he sits next to her, he can seeContinue reading “So This Is It”

Green Light

Near dusk, they knock a door halfway down the street. The woman says nothing but immediately waves them in. She motions to the couch and the young man and his companion sit. “Do you guys have any more videos you could leave me?” “Did missionaries give you some of our videos?” “Yeah, you guys did.”Continue reading “Green Light”

Olea, Shinehah, Kokaubeam, Kokob

Right after dinner and as it hits dark, Bill Ghormley organizes the young men into two teams, and they walk through a break in the small dunes and the dune weeds to the giant dune behind. That dune must a quarter mile long and wide. They have spent the day fishing in the waves andContinue reading “Olea, Shinehah, Kokaubeam, Kokob”

And Now You Know

Early each morning, the boy reads the Book of Mormon and then prays to know that it is true. He did not understand much of 2 Nephi. He sort of understood Mosiah. He really liked Alma and the war chapters because he loves Top Gun and Patton and Iron Eagle, and he thinks he wantsContinue reading “And Now You Know”

Damn You, Paddington Bear

Sunday morning, the boy sits in the second pew with his family. Stephen is next to him. They each have coloring books, and he is trying to stay inside the lines while Stephen is trying to draw bears on his. A speaker is at the podium saying things the boy does not understand or careContinue reading “Damn You, Paddington Bear”

They Won’t Kill Me if I’m with You

The young man and Elder Johnson tap on the door, and a young Latino waves them in quickly. “You didn’t see no one else out there, did you?” he says. “No,” says the young man, as he sits down on the couch. “Why? What’s up, Anthony?” Anthony peeks out the window, which is covered byContinue reading “They Won’t Kill Me if I’m with You”

I’m a OG

It is dusk in the snake pit. The door opens, and the man immediately lets them in, motioning them to a card table in the kitchen. He is probably mid-twenties, black, trim, and wearing dreds and a white muscle shirt. “Always good to see people who represent the Lord.” They chit chat a few minutes,Continue reading “I’m a OG”