Following the False Traditions of Our Fathers.
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  • Home and Visiting Teaching

    Explaining Mormon Home and Visiting Teaching

    by Apostolic Chaplain Insanad Rigdon

    There’s something humiliating about being assigned a “Friend” from the LDS church.  I have several friends that come by any time they like or need and communicate with me because they actually like me or we have something in common. To have someone that’s obligated, chastised, or guilted into visiting me is very, very demeaning.  To be on a list and a number on the proverbial bedpost of the home or visiting teacher is akin to being on some guy’s list of girls he plans to kiss and discard.

    These musings are a bit outrageous but they have enough truth in them to hit home.

    The visiting and home teacher programs probably started with good intent but have turned into this tedious chore that MUST be done in order to keep the facade of feigned activity up, as well as make those sucked into the dark hole of Mormon obedience feel like they’re doing their duty.

    I never wanted to be someone’s duty, which makes me feel like dooty, which is poop, and I’m pretty sure I’m not a pile of poop, although often I’m full of shit, which may or may not be the same thing.

    I’ve had Home Teachers come by on the last day of the month and leave their car running in the driveway with a wife and boatload of kids crying or fussing and they run up, knock on the door, “Hi, Just wanted to check in on your family and see how you’re doing”

    “Oh, We’re ok…. sort of, I think my husband is going to lose his job which means we may not be able to keep the house….. I just had a miscarriage, my daughter has Strept throat and we just threw a rod through the hood of the car. I’m pretty sure it’s totaled. ”

    “Wow, sounds like you’re in need of some prayers. (checks watch), Well, I’ve got to go,… .So? Is everything ok?”

    “huh?, … Oh, I see, YES, EVERYTHING IS FINE, JUST FINE!!!! WE’RE ALL VERY GOOD! HAPPY AS CLAMS!”

    “Ok, Great, well, we’ll see you next month then?”

    “Oh yes, looking forward to it.”

    “Can I leave you with a prayer?”

    “Oh, don’t worry, well cover it.”

    “Great, see you next month”

    Total elapsed time, 1 minute 32 seconds

    Visiting teaching goes like this:

    Ring ring… “Hello”

    “hello Sister _____, this is Sister _____. We’re supposed to do our visiting teaching and we’d like to come by sometime on Tuesday. Will you be available?”

    “I guess so. I get off work by 5:00 but then I have to finish dinner and take the kids to piano lessons and then come home and do nine loads of laundry and then if there’s time I need to make cupcakes for the bake sale tomorrow.”

    “Ok, we’ll only stay a few minutes, sounds like you’re really busy.”

    Knock, Knock,

    “Hello Ladies, come on in. Sorry about the mess, my two-year-old just took a box of cereal and spread it on the floor and stomped all over it and the vacuum has a large box turtle stuck in it so I couldn’t get it all cleaned up before you came.  Don’t mind that laundry on the couch. I just didn’t get time to fold it yet either.  I just don’t know how to find the time to do everything and work full time.  I’m bushed!!”

    “That’s fine Sister____. We’ll only stay long enough to read to you from this Ensign.”

    They read a short lesson.

    “Hmmmm, Yes, that lesson about women working outside the home and the dictates by Spencer W. Kimball about their selfish motives is certainly something to think about”.

    “Well, as you know, the Lord loves all his little lambs and wants the best for us. When the prophet speaks, the thinking has been done.”

    “Uh, I can see how you believe that…… Excuse me for a moment, I think my dog just killed another of the neighbor’s kittens. ”

    “Well, we won’t keep you.  Hope to see you in church on Sunday. Can we leave you with a word of prayer?’

    “oh sure…. nameajeezechristnamen”

    “We’ll see you next month!!”

    “K, byeeee now!”, (smiling sweetly as they waddle down the sidewalk)

    Elapsed time 8 minutes 9 seconds

    Boy oh boy, I can’t wait to see them again next month.  Good thing I have REAL friends for my true needs and life’s emergencies.