A meandering blog with no clear topic. You will find me talking about knitting, building, kids, social and economic issues, Alaska, and lots of other stuff.

Monday, January 28, 2008

The passing of a prophet

President Gordon B. Hinckley, 15th president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, passed away yesterday. (Photo from www.lds.org). He was 97. I feel like smacking myself on the forehead.
I work for the state, with children that have been abused or neglected. One day, I was at the hospital visiting a baby that had been born positive for cocaine. As I was leaving the hospital, I passed an elderly gentleman sitting quietly in a chair in the lobby. He was wearing glasses and a suit. He was accompanied by two much younger men, that were clearly security or assistants of some sort. As I walked passed him, I glanced quickly at him as I hurried on my way.
As I glanced at him, I felt my face transform into this huge grin, and I felt suddenly full of joy. Before I could think further, I was already heading out of the hospital. I got in the truck, shut the door, and stopped. I thought, "Holy COW... I think that was President Hinckley!" I debated for a moment, and decided that it couldn't really be him, because, after all, what would he be doing sitting in a hospital lobby in Anchorage???
But the thought kept nagging me. As I drove away, I called my husband. He wanted to know if I had gone back in and talked to him, and I replied, No, and explained why. After talking to him about it, I felt more convinced it was really President Hinckley, and headed back to the hospital, but I was too late; he had already left. As I drove home, I convinced myself once again that it couldn't really be him.
A couple of days later, I heard from various friends that they had seen apostles in the temple that Saturday, and that President Hinckley did stop in Anchorage due to some unknown medical issue. Ever since then, I have called myself all kinds of an idiot for not stopping and at least saying hello. And now, unfortunately, I never will. At least not in this life. Although I have never met him, he will be missed.

1 comment:

Mellifera said...

I know! I always felt so bad for him after Marjorie died, so I'm glad for him now. We'll miss him though. I saw an outrageous article today on how oppressed Mormon women are (since you seem to be the independent do-it-yourself sort of Relief Society member, I think you might understand how I feel about that : ), and I could just hear him spinning in his grave. I'm gonna miss you, Gordon B.