An LDS perspective on moving from childless to childfree living.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

An Apology

With the ward split that happened, our church time changed to 9:00 Relief Society followed by Sunday School and then Sacrament Meeting.  Last Sunday, I arrived in Relief Society a little early and sat by myself.  A lady I had not seen before came and asked to sit by me.  I asked her name.  I said, "I'm your visiting teacher!"  Then I asked how long she had lived in the ward. She said only three months.  I had been assigned as her visiting teacher when I was recovering from surgery, so I had not yet gone to visit.

She then asked me, "Do you have any children still at home?"  I said, "We can't have children and have decided to pursue life without them."  She proceeded to tell me that she was adopted (my guess is 50+ years ago).

I went to visit her on Wednesday afternoon. After we sat down in her living room she said, "I need to apologize for the question I asked you at church on Sunday. I usually ask that question when I meet someone new, but I have never had someone respond as you did. I learned a lesson on a question not to ask."  We then had a great discussion on an appropriate question and an appropriate response.  She was kind and understanding.  I told her I try to be matter of fact in my response to that question and explained to her that the better question to ask first is "Do you have children?" Since the other question assumes everyone does have children.  She thanked me for calmly teaching her something new.

I was very grateful for her receptiveness to understanding my situation and learning a better way to make small talk with someone new.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Ward Split

In the LDS Church, members are divided up into Wards and several Wards combine into Stakes.  These are geographic areas from which leaders are called.  Members in Wards attend church together every Sunday and work together to run the Church.

We live in a growing area where there are a lot of members.  Being in a suburb of Salt Lake, where the LDS Church has its headquarters, means there are a lot of members.  We recognized this when we built our home and moved in about 20 months ago.  Our Ward was very large and had a lot of energy.  We really like that!

Our Stake had 9 Wards of which they realigned boundaries to make 11 Wards.  Basically, our Ward went from around 600 members to about 350 members.  Because we haven't lived here very long and still don't know a lot of people, the boundary line meant little to us.  An IF friend ended up in the other Ward.  Other than that and it being a lot smaller, DH and I were fine with the change, that is, until we went to Church.

Sacrament meeting was so loud with screaming and crying children.  I don't know why we had not noticed before when the Ward was twice as large.  I have been wondering if it is the time change.  We used to have Sacrament meeting at 1:00 in the afternoon.  Now it begins at 10:45.  Could it have been nap time for all those children before?  The children have made it very hard to concentrate the last two weeks.

I like kids.  I'm a teacher.  I wish these parents, most of whom are much younger than me, would take their kids to the foyer when they are fussing so the rest of us can listen!  I shouldn't criticize.  After all, I don't have children.  It just seems that the parents are not doing a very good job of teaching their children how to behave at church and then helping them behave appropriately.

I was called to be the ward organist, which is great!  It is an easy calling for me.  No prep, no mid-week meetings.  The counselor in the bishopric was very kind and said they would be calling an assistant, because they know it is difficult for me to attend church on Fast Sunday when there is a baby blessing.  Thank you for being sensitive to my situation!