THE MIRACLE OF FORGIVENESS & KIMBALL’S CADILLAC – Pt. 1


The crisp coldness of the Utah Valley winter air dominated my senses but clashed in competition with the rumbling warmth of an idling Cadillac engine. Soon I found myself side by side with my best friend, rolling, in silence, through a meandering suburban maze. By the time the humming motor took over the soundscape, my mind began to ruminate on the events that had led up to this unassuming moment. If I had allowed my mind to wander further back in time, I would have marveled at the stranger than fiction story-line that had brought two New Yorkers – one black, one white– to cross paths in Orem, Utah of all places. But, as it was, my subconscious and my conscious, seated side by side in my right and left brain hemispheres respectively, enjoyed a quiet, mutual appreciation, perfectly paralleled by the way Mike and I respectfully remained in our own private thoughts during these demure moments of reverie.

I thought back to only hours earlier, when we had made a midnight run for burritos at a popular 24 hours spot located in that no man’s land in between Orem and Provo. During my not so distant college days I had jokingly dubbed that area, “Orvo”. Although we were unaware, time and space had here converged in an “Ovum” pregnant with possibilities. Another brother from yet another mother, Brio Springford, would later explain to me the mystical significance of such intermediate states as midnight, dusk and dawn. Neither here nor there, this nor that, halfway between solid and gas, they act as a mystical mist or lubricant opening portals between the physical world and the realm of spirit. But, like I said, my conscious mind was not even traveling back that far into the strange and slow spiritual sojourn that had taken my brother and I along the paths of Muslim and Mormon to this current crossroads in Christ. Brio was, at this point, still just a Facebook acquaintance going by his first given name, Joseph. And all I remembered was the good grub and good conversation.

We had talked of many things; Mexican food and culture, U.S. culture, Mexican women, U.S. women. But mostly, Mike shared his enthusiasm for Cadillacs. This was my first time riding in one and I could see why he liked them so much. Comfortable and kingly, the ride evoked a classic coolness to transcend all trends. As he described the character of the car I could see, hear and feel the truthfulness of his report. This was an honorable vehicle. Even its functional flaws figured nobly into its proud performance –Honor on wheels.

This magnificent maroon colored machine now made its way to the freeway on-ramp and my thoughts moved forward to only minutes before we left the house. I had checked online and saw that the Facebook friend I mentioned earlier had invited me to join a group that called itself the Mormon Reconciliation Movement. Joseph explained in a message that the group’s goals were somewhat loosely defined but that they wanted to at least start a dialogue among people who desired a peaceful and happy society. Open to and in fact reaching out to those of all faiths and cultures, the group would however maintain as one of its focal points, a reconciliation, specifically between Mormons and Native Americans.

I was well versed in the lamentable history between LDS and ‘Lamanites’. Now as the little man in my mind accessed the file on dealings between Mormon settlers and Native tribes, I saw a vast library of information appear on my mental screen. There was Joseph’s referencing of the native population as modern descendents of the Lamanite civilization described in the Book of Mormon narrative. The commission to the overwhelmingly white converts of an early Mormon Church to join with the natives, rejected, and a precarious distance respected in Brigham’s Utah. My great-great-great-great grandfather and one of my guardian angels, Daniel Webster Jones’ statement that he had found, “more nobility of character among the Indians than what is common among many whites, even Mormons included,” echoed through my thoughts. Appalling accounts of treachery towards the Hopi that built the corrupt careers of Ernest L. Wilkinson and others were harrowed up from this dark data base. But perhaps most disturbing to me were the misguided notions of LDS Church President, Spencer W. Kimball. Most disturbing, because, this sweet old man with smiling eyes, had a love for the Navajo people, which seemed to be sincere, real. I guess Pres. Kimball was a product of the thinking of his time. But I found no comfort in this conclusion. That an old man with a good heart would allow the racism of his era to mislead his heart was extremely saddening to my own heart. The contrast between true love and false principles made me feel like puking. And speaking about “striking contrast,” as a product of ‘his era’, he pushed the painful irony deeper when, in a 1960 issue of a magazine called The Improvement Era, he said:

“I saw a striking contrast in the progress of the Indian people today …. For years they have been growing delightsome, and they are now becoming white and delightsome, as they were promised. In this picture of the twenty Lamanite missionaries, fifteen of the twenty were as light as Anglos, five were darker but equally delightsome. The children in the home placement program in Utah are often lighter than their brothers and sisters in the hogans on the reservation. At one meeting a father and mother and their sixteen-year-old daughter we represent, the little member girl—sixteen—sitting between the dark father and mother, and it was evident she was several shades lighter than her parents—on the same reservation, in the same hogan, subject to the same sun and wind and weather…. These young members of the Church are changing to whiteness and to delightsomeness. One white elder jokingly said that he and his companion were donating blood regularly to the hospital in the hope that the process might be accelerated.”

During this very visit to friends in Utah, my wife, Quiana and I, had witnessed firsthand, the soul-corroding effects of Kimball’s zeal for the Indian Placement Program. Long-time friends of Navajo descent, the Seschille Sisters, welcomed us to their home until they discovered that Quiana, by choice, no longer wore the LDS Temple undergarments. They seemed unable to feel the spirit of the ancestors sweeping the land, unaware of the blocks that had been placed between them and their kindred dead; while Quiana and I were unable to deny that same powerful spirit of Elijah. Just over a month prior, during the harvest time of year once celebrated by my Keltic ancestors as Samhain, now commercialized as Halloween and observed in Mexican tradition as Day of the Dead, we had been made keenly aware of the presence of those long passed. It wasn’t so much the resurrection of repressed ancestral memories, but a relaxed and naturally remembered ritual. There was a very ‘tuberous’ theme reminding us of our ‘roots’ that day. Modern-day Americans, of course, use pumpkins. But the Keltic Clans had used turnips, and they felt right at home with the anciently rooted Nahuatl custom, which made use of a closely related species –the refreshing jicama. Revived spiritual sensitivity along with an already sanctioned mix of Catholic and Mesoamerican holy days being observed locally by the general public, coincided to usher in an early thanksgiving, which had always been Quiana’s and my favorite holiday. It was really nice, because, whereas living so far from ‘living’ relatives made get-togethers extremely difficult, this simple openness that had snuggled up to our hearts gradually till this period of permeability in the veil between worlds, reminded us that distance itself was relative. And hence, distant relatives and even the spirits of relations of close friends and curious neighbors, graced our home with their visitation during this season.

But, I digress. This was not the warm climate of central Mexico. It was early December in Utah, and my train of thought was stopped cold in its tracks. I was contemplating the cruel confusion of this world that made a genuinely respectable man capable of hosting such degrading attitudes and perpetrating truly deplorable actions toward such a noble albeit abused race. As soon as the sick and twisted picture started to sink in, a feeling suddenly came over my heart and a thought rushed into my mind. I felt and thought that Spencer was truly sorry and repentant for his past transgressions. But who could know but the man himself and God, right?

Then, just as suddenly, my train of thought was completely derailed when Mike’s gruff voice broke the silence. “There’s this Caddy I peeped on KSL classifieds. I was thinkin’ of goin’ to check it out after we run these errands.” Oh, so not derailed but looped back to the original line of thought, “Cadillacs”. I listened while the enthusiast described the details of the vehicle for sale. It was located in American Fork –we were headed there anyway. It was a ’79 DeVille D’Elegance –we were riding in a 1980 DeVille. It was originally owned by Spencer Kimball. “Whoah, hold up. Did you say Spencer Kimball?” I asked. I had to consciously swallow the ‘W’ that my Babylonian upbringing was wont to automatically insert; as if the presentation of, first name–middle initial–surname, would grant the man some heir of worldly importance.  Mike confirmed that I had indeed heard him correctly. He said, “Yeah, I guess you know who he was. I wasn’t really familiar with that name but I gathered that he was a leader in the LDS Church.” As I marveled over the route of thought that had just completed a perfect closed circuit through my mind and Mike’s mouth, I told my friend that Spencer Kimball was the President who had finally changed the policy preventing black men from being ordained to the Priesthood in the Church. Mike’s eyebrows were slightly raised and his tone was somber as he said, “Wow. See, that makes me even more interested in this car.”

I too was seized with the desire to see this car and took it as a very material validation of the sweet spiritual assurance I had just received. Why should Spencer Kimball confess and speak to my heart regarding his personal conversion? Why should he want to offer this token and sign of his repentance? Why not? Our hearts were one on this issue. We all help one another as brothers and sisters through mutually uplifting heart to heart dialogue. One who is looked up to as a leader in any capacity knows that they can only retain respect in the eyes of their younger supporters through humility. Public confession was a very emotionally freeing way to keep families working well together in the early days of any Christian movement. The bold swallowing of pride by one of my elders, so long removed from the sphere of the ‘living’, but nonetheless indelibly impressed upon my mind from the earliest days of my childhood, caused my mind also, to be humbled. I understood that God’s forgiveness is infinite and that by continuing to judge someone based on the actions of their past, I could lose the opportunity of reaping beautiful blessings from the reconciliation that comes about through repentance. My mind could hardly believe what was happening but secretly I was excited by the prospect of participating in what appeared to be an inter-dimensional gift exchange transacted across time and space.

We went to see Kimball’s caddy. There she was, shinning in a partially iced-over driveway just off of 100 East; an impressive, Book of Mormon Blue, Mafioso looking ’79 Cadillac DeVille D’Elegance. The current owner came outside and shook our hands. We admired his scrap-metal artwork as he rummaged through drawers in his garage and finally produced the keys to the vehicle. We examined its spacious trunk, its plush, light blue interior. Between the seats, Mike found a clear plastic clip with worn adhesive material on the back, encasing a little slip of paper. “Yo, check this out.” He passed it to me. At the top of the paper it read: LDS Vehicle Service Center. Below it listed the details of a service check done in May of ’87. This being a ’79 model would have been issued to Spencer in September of the previous year, making it the same car which transported him the day of the historic announcement in general conference on Sep. 30th of 1978. The man told us that he had hoped to sell it to someone who appreciated the car’s history. He said that shortly after placing the Cadillac on the market he was contacted by an old woman who wanted to purchase it as a collection piece for the very fact that it had belonged to President Kimball, who the lady described as her “favorite prophet”. But for some reason he felt impressed to not sell it to her and wait instead. I felt a warm sensation come over my heart. The feeling was fire and ice as Mike and the seller carried out the details of the transaction. I just stood there with sunbeams, like little golden children of God signing in my face and chills running up and down my spine, like the “Itsy Bitsy Spider” from the song.

As we pulled out of that amiable young man’s driveway, Mike in Kimball’s Cadillac and I tailing him in the other Caddy, a quote popped up in my mind. From a crease in the grey matter right next to the memory accessed earlier that day, came a file containing a vaguely remembered, preferably forgotten piece of Church history which had no doubt been preserved for some wise purpose in the Lord. My happy heart was overwhelming my meticulous mind at this time and so I would have to look it up later to retrieve the corrupted file in all of its vainglorious corruption. Something about “Negroes and Cadillacs”, but this was no Snoop Dogg track. It turned out to be from a shameful speech given by apostle Mark E. Peterson, at BYU, August 27, 1954.

“Now we are generous with the Negro. We are willing that the Negro have the highest education. I would be willing to let every Negro drive a Cadillac if they could afford it. I would be willing that they have all the advantages they can get out of life in the world. But let them enjoy these things among themselves.”

Later Peterson explains how he expects to find Negroes as his servants in the next life. I wonder what he did find there and if his hateful speech has since turned to a sad soliloquy delivered from some dark catacomb like Hamlet. To be so miserably mean is to be lonely and anguish to a human being’s soul. But, unlike the fictional character of Hamlet, “Not to Be” is not an option. As soul’s discover their own immortality they are ever faced with the same question “To be loving or to be damned?” Poor guy, I’m sure he’d love company. And perhaps Spencer in some other dimension was visiting his contemporary in his spirit prison cell. But in this space and time, Spencer W. Kimball was arranging the symbolic signing over of this prized possession through the veil.

I took it as a sure sign that I was to ordain Mike to the Melchizedek Priesthood. Oddly enough, the thought had occurred to me the last time I had visited and seen Mike in person, exactly one year earlier. But that December was full of other adventures and due to last minute family plans, we had been unable to spend more than a few hours with Mike. At that time Mike had seemed a little depressed and sort of distant. Apart from that, I did not really know how to bring it up. What was I supposed to say? “Hey bro. Why don’t you let me put my hands on ya head and pass you some priesthood?” No, like many other ideas and premonitions that came to me that year, it would have to wait. Wait for what? –For me to get over my fear to act on the promptings of the Holy Spirit for one thing. It would have to wait for me to stop drinking the Kool-Aid of LDS Cult-sure once and for all by desisting from my church attendance. It would have to wait for me to get out, by means of fear and trembling, from under the veil of unbelief I was born into. It would have to wait for me to “Gird up my loins,” which is biblical language for “Grow some balls”. It would have to wait for many things. And to be fair to myself, Mike had to do some personal soul searching in that time too. It would have to wait for everything to be just right. And as a matter of fact we would end up waiting about a month, till it felt like the perfect time to perform the ordination; although I told him later that same day and we were both agreeable to the idea. But, as I explained to my friend, this would not be a conferring of power so much as a symbolic act to unlock a power already inside each of us. It would not have to wait much longer as God hastened his strange work in these latter days.

The stars were literally aligning. Michael’s militant muse of Mars and my guiding star, Jupiter were prepping each other for resiliency in an upcoming adventure where we would need to be very daring. The adventure would take us over land and sea and be challenging but exhilarating. Exhilaration and sheer electricity was felt as I finally placed my hands upon the crown of his head and unlocked the priesthood power. In many ways, Spencer’s spirit helped set us up for what we needed to do in life. The ensuing experiences since December of 2011 have changed Mike’s and my lives forever. We are new people –Stronger, happier. We are grateful to God for the miracle of forgiveness which enables us to stop trying to outrun our pasts and be made free in Christ. And we are grateful to Kimball for the Cadillac.

Advertisements

14 Comments

  1. I share this very personal experience today to commemorate the General Conference announcement officially changing the Church’s racist policy in regards to the Priesthood, made exactly 34 years ago today.

  2. Still haven’t read this post but the title brought a chuckle. Just a couple of days ago I picked up a copy of the Miracle of Forgiveness that I found in my house and started to thumb its pages. I stopped at the chapter entitled, “The Sin Against Nature,” or something to that effect. As I read I thought to myself, “This might make for some interesting conversation on the blog,” and I considered posting it in parts, without any commentary from myself, for I was curious whether anyone still agreed with what he wrote in that chapter, but then I talked myself out of it and decided not to do it, for a variety of reasons.

    And lo and behold! Here is a post on the miracle of forgiveness, in parts! I wonder who else had Kimball on their minds these past few days?

  3. To me the “therefore” of this story is that even though a person has died or passed on from this mortal sphere they are by no means gone from it. I was disturbed when I heard Gordon B Hinckley speak of one of the apostles who had died. He said to the effect Now he is dead and can not have anymore influence here on the earth. I was fully active and still drinking the kool-aid at the time but I remember clearly wondering why his remark gave no room for the continued involvement in the lives of the living by our deceased family and friends
    They are a part of the work of salvation and exaltation of all God’s children. Their progress depends upon that continued participation.
    So I believe if we look for it we can become aware of the work and effects in our lives of our deceased loved ones.

    And if perchance we have a loved one (or perhaps more importantly one whom we consider an enemy) who to us it feels they are not up and doing but are languishing in a nonproductive state, then that is cause to pray for them and call down blessings upon them with our faith in these principles and Jesus Christ.

  4. Beautiful. Post. My thoughts have also been upon Spencer these days. One of my first memories was sitting on his lap while he explained the relevation to my family in his office shortly after my grandfather’s (his nephew’s) funeral. Shortly after, our family welcomed a navajo child into our home. I hope you elect to read all of Spencer’s words and not just the ones influenced by his culture and upbringing. You would See that he was trying with all his heart to create a society with one heart, void of labels, prejudices, and borders.

  5. This was very timely. Just what the doctor ordered this beautiful Sunday morning! I felt the post was complete but it says part one? We are highly anticipating part two! Thank you so much for sharing.

  6. Oh he has been abroad and ACTIVE in the hearts and minds of many. When I wrote in Brigham the Builder & the Butcher pt. 2, of the sudden surge in quotes and references to Spencer Kimball in General Conference just last April and perceived that the LDS Liberty group also has been receiving ample portions of the SWK Spirit –I knew that I had to share the intimate possibilities and personal witness that is possible on an individual level, if we will just be open to the realities and subtle properties of spirit matter. To me, understanding the cooperation between these supposedly separate groups of ‘living’ and ‘dead’ is a literally essential part of laying the foundations of Zion in this plane. It is the very Spirit of Elijah spoken of in scripture, without which the whole Earth would be “smitten with a curse and utterly wasted at His coming.” Because, first and foremost without an active interaction between these two sides of the veil we can not be sure that we are in fact ‘living’ and not just filling the role of the ‘living dead’. I can also bear very, very heart-wrenching testimony of the importance of doing as dyc4557 said here. We must be aware of both the benevolent forces and the ill winds of those misguided and misunderstood spirits. Many of our own family members are confused and the only thing that will cure them is for us to supply understanding, thereby pacifying their unrest, protecting our own precious agency and our children’s souls etc. from their misguided actions. And if they choose we then truly become Saviors on Mount Zion. Then and only then are the hearts of the Fathers drawn to the Hearts of the Children and the Hearts of us Children drawn to the Hearts of our Fathers to be reconciled in the only true relationship efficient enough and capable of tearing down the false zion of satan to clear the way of the Lord and build the true Zion of our GOD.

    SWK quotes and references in April Conference of 2012

  7. Finewindes,
    Thank you for your comment. Yes I can now do better than “believe” that Spencer WAS TRYING with all his heart to create a society with one heart, void of labels, prejudices, and borders. I am grateful to “know” that Spencer IS DOING his part with all his heart to create a society with one heart, void of labels, prejudices, and borders. In this way he (the purest portion therefore most potent part of his spirit) finds himself working in the company of companions who would have been wholly unexpected as fellow servants of the Lord for that version of Spencer Wooley Kimball who tried to build Zion throughout the 60s and 70s. Spirits like John Lennon. –a man against whom I had been greatly prejudiced until Spencer introduced us recently. This is the fun part about it. The UNEXPECTED nature of it all gives us, the Children of Light the upper hand in this labor of love. Spencer’s excitement at the prospects of a society with one heart, void of labels, prejudices and borders is so purely reflected in Lennon’s song Imagine. And here I was judging Lennon for the Communist wool that they had attempted to pull over his eyes. Only through seeing the Capitalist wool they attempted to pull over Spencer Wooley Kimball’s eyes while in the flesh, could I allow both in my heart and see accurately what they saw, what they see now, where they went wrong, where the very wrong they went with is now a great advantage to them as they do their personal purification. The possibilities in CHRIST are truly endless.

    Finewindes, my friend, Spencer wants you and everyone to see his past faults just as clearly as we can see the shining spirit that came through during his mortal ministry. If we are so one sided then the light which is in us can become darkness. He does not want us to miss the light that he is letting shine to the world NOW! He is thrilled about it…working again with the youth, working together as one with the native people, rejoicing in the reconciliation between his energy and that of his black brothers and sisters that was sadly not possible while in the flesh. Removing young Native youth from their homes and taking them into our houses was never the right thing to do. Not only was it an efficient way to go about God’s sanctioned work….but worse it was the most efficient tool in the hands of the adversary to kill off many of the final vestiges of the Navajo soul. What is being experienced now is a prepping of the ground of the Vineyard of the Lord for the Morning of the First Resurrection. The true key of reincarnation and Lives Eternal is being discovered in our hearts here and now.

    There are some very FineWinds blowing across the land at this glorious time.
    In the ‘actual’ world and in the ‘virtual’ world of the internet there is a virtual frenzy of information emerging from the history of the Mormon Church and swirling in the air. The wicked who fight against Zion have seized on the strong spirits of iconic figures like Joseph Smith and Brigham Young in order to help themselves to their charisma and charms in preying upon the sheep. The wicked shepherds, as the Lord calls them in Ezekiel 34, are wolves in sheep’s clothing.

  8. Elder Chantdown,

    If the tares are truly those left behind to burn with the church I will gladly stay with the sheep and await my fate. Just as not all were called to leave Jerusalem as Lehi did. I have done more good and brought more souls to Christ within the confines of a condemned building than I would ever be able to do without. Like the firefighters who stayed till the buildings fell desperately trying to save just a few more. And i will have peace knowing I was not one of those who fled for my life at the first sign of collapse. For we see the world as we are and as we wish to be. And when the winds come, mighty and strong as they will be. There will be no need for strong words and swirling speech. And we will see that there is no harm in being deceived. There is only purity of heart and desire to be part of his many kingdoms.

  9. That sounds good to me. I could not have said it better myself. I believe that your desire to be as one of the rescue workers who died in 911 can be seen as heroic on some level. There are probably many ways to fulfill the call to be Saviors on Mount Zion. To quote your own words “For we see the world as we are and as we wish to be.” If you “wish to be” like those firefighters, I would make sure to be at conference this coming weekend.
    You may have been able to bring more souls to Christ within the confines of a condemned building than You would ever be able to do without. But You will never truly know unless you have tried both, now will you? Will you now? You do not have to. But here are a few humble observations from someone who has looked at the Church from within and without: I have noted that the phrase, “Bring souls to Christ” is used a lot by people working in and for the Churtch, but not so much by those working for the Lord without the Churtch. I think it has something to do with the fact that while in the Churtch, our pride likes the sound of Christ being a Church where we and others can, nay, should go every Sunday (not including the endless weekday meetings and activities for the Superighteouss’aint) So I have in my lifetime brought a lot of folks to Church as I’m sure you have. But this is not the same thing as Christ. Christ’s spirit is supposed to be a constant companion and a traveling teacher even. So as the shepherd HE GOES TO THEM not the other way around. When you let Christ all the way into your heart and mind then you instantly find yourself on the move.
    You are absolutely right that many others were not called to leave Jerusalem as Lehi did. There were undoubtedly at least some others who did leave of whom we have no record at this time. The one thing we most certainly have record of is the mass of people who were invited through the words of Jeremiah, Lehi and others to leave but did not. And we should know by now that the only reason God speaks to groups of people through prophets is because he can no longer get a hold of them on their direct lines which have been jammed with other signals coming from Church and State, and other aspects of fallen cult-sure. But of those who remained, of course there were probably some even commanded to linger. Jeremiah, the mourning prophet was one of them. So many thought he was extreme in his warnings. Then when they came to pass there were those who came to him professing him to be a true prophet (duh) and asking what the Lord would have them do now. When he told them to go into bondage they then switched right back to calling him a false prophet. But that was what the Lord had said. Come ye out from her, or stay and preach, or you can stay and be killed, either running away from the Babylonians or fighting them. Or you can go into bondage at that point. “Do whatever you want” has ever been the essence of the message of God to the heart of man. Since the grand council in Heaven and the presentation of a plan based on free agency. So yes there are those who stay and some are advised by Christ through the Spirit to do so. But I find that commission conspicuously lacking from people’s speech when they feel the need to justify their staying faithful to the Church. I am nobody that you should even feel the need to defend yourself at all. But if the words that come through me do prick some part of you or something that is so attached to you that you feel it as part of your own spiritual nervous system then by all means react.

    But I would not be so quick to judge your brothers and sisters who leave the confines of the “condemned building” as you yourself put it. Why do you say that your peace will come from “knowing I was not one of those who fled for my life at the first sign of collapse.”? You and I both know that anyone who has left the church at anytime within the last few decades was not leaving at the FIRST signs of collapse. But the first signs of collapse were long before you or I were even born I would hold my tongue before trying to paint every cast out and called out person as some kind of coward. I have sympathy and empathy for those New York firefighters who you referenced earlier. But I’m no sure that their heroics serve as the best analogy in your case. Because you see, the souls who were saved were the souls who got out of those towers. If a rescue worker sacrificed his life for them to live, that is honorable, Christlike even. But tell me, how many families or individuals have you helped out of the falling great and spacious through your visiting teaching appointments?
    Once again I couldn’t have said it any clearer than the first line of your comment “If the tares are truly those left behind to burn with the church I will gladly stay with the sheep and await my fate.” I guess that’s why they call it the great and Tare-able day.

  10. E.C.
    This post was fantastic! I have been a lurker on LDSA for some time now. I am far from the usual highly intelligent comment-er. My words seem tiny compared to all you speak of on this blog. I appreciate the clarity with which you write. I am newly awakened and feel unsure of many things. I appreciate all posts written here. They give me strength and focus. They help me form my new thoughts. I do not depend on them, but use them to create questions I am no longer scared of asking. Thank you for those questions. They are bringing me closer to Christ than ever before. Thank you!

    PS – My great-great-great-great grandfather is Daniel Webster Jones too. My maiden name is Jones. I have lived in AZ all of my life. Within 15 minutes of Lehi, AZ which he founded. We visit his grave in Mesa, AZ along with other family members each Memorial Day. What is your connection to him, if you don’t mind me asking? Do you have a copy of “40 Years Among the Indians”? I love that you recognize him as your guardian angel…very cool!!!

    Again, thank you!

  11. Elder Chantdown,

    Your response has brought me much happiness. It has actually helped me to see that we see things in very similar ways. I am truly grateful for this. I love what you said about bringing souls to Christ. I do not see this as simply bringing people into the Churtch either. The direct lines of communication of which you speak are real and true. What you said about those who are commissioned to stay is exactly what I have seen and felt having first wandered into the wilderness only to be told to go back. What drives me to respond to your posts is the level of enlightenment I see in you and your writings. I have the utmost respect for you are trying to do even though at times I’m sure an apologetic sense of duty sneaks in before I realize it. I have tried very hard to look upon those who have been called to leave with respect and love, my father and many of my friends fall into this group. There is no cowardice in this. I’m sorry if it came across that way. I have a greater hope that the dispersing of true believers that we are seeing in the youth and others right now is simply a second scattering of Israel that will lead to a much bigger gathering where we can finally be one people united together in Christ. Because if we cannot be one, then we are not his. None of us.

    As a sidenote I now home teach more than I’ve ever done in life. 5-10 times a day sometimes. I listen to the guidance of the spirit and I seek out those who need help, in or out of the church. If everyone in the church did this there would be no need to assign home teaching. There may not even be need for the church at all. I think this is the point of Christ’s message and yes, his spirit is and always will be the guide.

  12. Finewindes,

    AWESOME! Thanks for the clarification.

  13. Not sure if you got to read the BRIGHAM – THE BUILDER & THE BUTCHER, parts 1 or 2. But it was interesting because while completing the second in that series I became aware that it was Daniel W. Jones who had put the fire under me to get in the zone and receive and write all that I did. Daniel as a guardian angel has been present in my life since at least the time when I recognized a presence back just prior to leaving on an LDS mission. Then after returning while reading 40 Years Among the Indians along with my sweetheart/future wife I was finally able to put a name with that presence. I was so happy he was able to let me know who he was. He respected Brigham as a friend during their time in the flesh and now here I am with dear feelings of brotherhood for my friend who is the great-great-great-great grandson of Brigham. So talk about the Spirit of Elijah…hearts of the Fathers and Children working together to make things happen on both sides of the veil. But yeah, Dan Jones passed away on Aug. 26th…which was when I started to think about Brigham…but then suddenly as soon as that six flipped upsidedown and the anniversary of Brigham Young’s death, Aug. 29th rolled around I was instantly glued to my seat and shown so much, whispered so many things, inspired to write and write until it was finally finished. So when I realized what was going on, I looked up a copy of “40 Years” to have or refer to on the computer. I came across this online version in blog format. Its very nicely done…and I was drawn to a part at the very end which I do not recall reading in my paper-back version. When I read that I came across some information that mentioned where Daniel’s body was buried. I never knew that before and when I read about it I felt deep in my heart that I would love to go and connect with my guardian angel even more by visiting his gravesite.
    So now I knew where that was, but I did not know how or if I could get out there. I was so floored to see your comment. It gave me the chills to be honest when you mentioned that were distant cousins apparently and that yall live right there. Like I said, I could feel his presence near as I wrote addressing Brigham. And as I write I am also amazed to see in black n white my own experiences of just how connected we all are. There was a detour in the writing which I was trying to finish for the BRIGHAM –THE BUILDER & THE BUTCHER posts which I wanted to post in time for the day of Brigham’s burial…where I found some very interesting info and was made aware of the various places where the posterity of Daniel Jones is and what they are doing at this time. I feel now that perhaps the most important reason Daniel even spoke up recently…(he is for the most part a very humble soul…he was not all in a hurry to let me know his name and just who he was for the first few years that I even became aware of his presence in my life…and who knows how long he had been LURKING before that…hahaha…maybe it’s a family trait eh?) But here he was assuring that temple work was done for Brother Brigham…and also desirous to get some done for his descendents. I am thinking that it is not all that necessary for me to go to the gravesite in order that GOD can continue working with us and through us two…but of course Im sure that it would only help, if possible…but perhaps it is also or even more about Daniel’s desire to get his great-great-great-great grandkids together in this time of meeting of the minds and literal gathering.

  14. E.C. ~
    It is definitely in our family to be “lurkers”. We watch before we act. Waiting for the right time to speak our minds. It’s the Jones blood. Daniel W. was much like that, I guess. A humble man, given to sacrifice and service. My grandmother talks of him often. With kindness. Maybe that’s because of so many generations past, we forget the troubles of the man, but I think overall he was what we feel he was.
    I did read “Brigham – The Builder & The Butcher”. I enjoyed it. It was refreshing to have Brigham called out for what he has done. I agree with your thoughts. He was a man who brought out the best in one (Daniel) and the worst in others (Mountain Meadow). My glass of charity runs foggy when it comes to Brigham, but I have learned to wipe it off quickly.
    I can tell you that Daniel’s ancestors have had much work done in the temple. My grandmother is all over that one! =) It’s touching how our hearts turn to those we love when we realize they are around us. it seems to be the initial reaction.
    And…
    Amen to your thoughts about family returning to family. I do not think your relationship with Daniel will be strengthened by a visit to his grave, but your impressions of reconnection may be pivotal. I for one am grateful to know of your existence. I am too judgmental of this hard Jones blood running through my veins. It brings me pride, stubbornness, strength and constant repentance. I will be more grateful now for the humility it teaches me. Thank you for reconnecting with me.
    Onward!


Comments RSS

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s