Periodicals; Mormons; Religious thought; Philosophy and religion
Independent national quarterly established to express Mormon culture and examine the relevance of religion to secular life. It is edited by Mormons who wish to bring their faith into dialogue with human experience as a whole and to foster artistic and scholarly achievement based on their cultural heritage. The journal encourages a variety of viewpoints; although every effort is made to insure accurate scholarship and responsible judgment, the views expressed are those of the individual authors and are not necessarily those of the Mormon Church or of the editors.
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Rees, Robert A.
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has restored my vision. While putting mother to bed that night, a task that had become so laborious, I was filled with calm. Could this epiphany—certainly a miracle in my life— have been what the Master meant when he spoke of a mighty change of heart? Surely so. Nevertheless change is a thing with precipices all around it. And though I have begun to look differently at my circumstances, at my parents, my sisters, and others around me—I am finding that weakness becomes strength slowly and against difficulty. One of the precipices for me is the silence in the gospel regarding unmarried women. And attitudes of Church members are not encouraging. In the autumn following the broadcast of Brother Sill's simple story and my improved vision, I returned home alone from a meeting one evening, where the audience had been encircled with peace, and an amusing thought popped into my mind: These experiences had come to me because I was specializing to become a ministering angel. Perhaps if my work were well done upon the earth, as my parents taught, provision would be made for me to choose the persons I will attend. Who will they be? My father, mother, sisters and their families; an aunt, her husband and their nine daughters; a missionary companion who found her husband "in due time" at the age of forty-five; and an elder in our mission who has grown with his family into a high Church position. What hope does the Church hold for me —for this world or hereafter? Everything is for the married woman: a share of her husband's priesthood. The Church should have a more prominent place for the "Mormon Nun," a term borrowed from a cousin, but a good one. There is a too-common attitude that the single woman is inferior. She feels apologetic and a little guilty, when actually she is often superior intellectually, in accomplishments, in compassion, in generosity, in plain goodness. Surely there is justice somewhere. Personal Voices I 183 This Saturday it will be time to scour the veranda. The concrete floor and railing around the sides of the porch will be washed several times by hand. It takes six long hours to wash away the yearly accumulation of dirt, and help is hard to find. Young girls want to spend their time talking about their boy friends; older women prefer to work in new pretty homes. Our covered porch is a gathering place for family, relatives, friends, and renters who have known us over the years and who come home to see the parade on the Fourth of July. Our town has four days celebrating our national birthday, with many and varied activities planned for every age group.We extend invitations to many persons to join us for the noonday meal which we eat "right after the parade." Again this year I shall be in the kitchen preparing a huge dinner. The peacemaker will prepare the stuffed turkey. I will cook ham, a beef roast, and dozens of hot rolls. We will have vegetables, salads, relishes, soft drinks, and watermelon for dessert. Sisters will help as they can, while greeting friends and putting "Mormon bandages" on minor hurts of their children. Mother will ask if I have made enough rolls and father will be in a chair, with a lap robe, holding a great-grandchild. He will draw young and old around him as he begins talking. "Now when I was about fourteen and rode the range, I had a beautiful sorrel mare who was named Nell. . . ." For the past fifteen years a group of elderly women has gone to the market with me each Saturday afternoon. One of the ladies is my aunt. Recently she said, when I picked her up first, "Your parents are more healthy than mother was at their age." After hearing the compliment I thought, "Shoulders are made to handle their burden. The yoke is almost filling a need for me. What can I say to this regal person?" My words came quickly, "You are very alert yourself, Aunt Elsie. Grow old slowly, I will need someone to care for when father and mother are gone." VICKY Anonymous "We were in prison and ye came unto us." On our way to the Utah State Prison that first Monday night there were some final questions the family needed answering. No, we wouldn't have a regular family night presentation this time; we'd begin that the following month after we were better acquainted. Yes, there really would be plenty to talk about for an hour and a half. We could each tell her some- thing about our special interests. And there was a lot to learn about her. All we knew so far was her name and that she was young, Black, and not a member of the Church. No, we weren't going there to convert her—just help her. . . . We might help by just being her friend, so she wouldn't get discouraged and . . . yes, that's right: we would definitely help her when she started a new life after she was released. But of course we could only do