A few months ago this was the calendar, word for word, sent out to a nearby quorum in a sleepy suburban ward (hint: it’s in the US).
March 15th: Concealed Weapons Class, 1pm at the [deleted] home. Joint activity with the High Priests. Punch and cookies served. (Okay I added the punch and cookies bit.)
March 19th: Ward Temple Night
March 23rd: Easter Sunday
March 27th: Ward Preparedness Evening, an evening spent discussing using your stoves and lamps, first aid kits, gardening, etc.
March 30th: Fireside on China
April 5th- 6th: General Conference
May 9th-10th: Fathers and Sons
All pretty routine I thought. Except…wait a minute! Concealed Weapons Class?!!! Were we supposed to bring our wives and kids too?
What amazed me was how I almost missed noticing. Because it was all done so matter-of-factly, part of a list of the usual sorts of events, without apology or eye-blink. And I didn’t hear anyone express any surprise the next week during church either.
I hadn’t felt this lonely since the time my elders’ quorum instructor in Idaho shook his head about a stranded motorist he’d helped that week: “the guy was a professor and didn’t know how to change a tire.” I slid down into the unwelcoming folds of my metal seat. Then he added for good measure (and this one really hurt), “he probably didn’t even know how to skin a deer!” Big laughs all around. I slid down further.
Whether my wife should give her teacher’s-choice lesson on polygamy (about which she wrote a thesis) during Relief Society stirred up a lot more discussion than the Weapons Class.
A series of irrational (but colorful) thoughts started racing through my head, as I began to panic that Weapons Class was just a prelude to everything that followed. Temple Night was right after gun class? Why? To help us figure out how to smuggle one in? Then Easter–was it to liven up the meeting? Ward Preparedness–surely to protect our hard-won supplies? Fireside on China–to prepare for an invasion, because they’re taking over the world? General Conference–packing heat into conference, just in case the church’s leaders needed more protection? Then it all made sense: the big climax was obviously Fathers and Sons, when we would all show our weapons and hiding places to each other and bond.
I didn’t go to the class. But I had my (self) defenses. One, I was out of town. Two, although I believe it healthy to bend our minds, almost every activity I attend feels mind-bending in some way so I get plenty of opportunity to see the world through other eyes (and I have no doubt that when I’m involved in leading something that it’s mind-bending for others. It’s good we get along, especially after that class).
I wondered whether other readers had similarly surprising or double-take sorts of activities, regarding guns or otherwise?
Maybe a recycling night in Utah or something?