The Bishop who cared too much

(My Homeless story is in the works. But I wanted to break the Mozotiny with this little tale. )

Many years ago, in a land far, far, away I had a very loving bishop. He was wonderful. When I went through a very rough time, he met with me once a week for a personal check-up or bishop therapy. He helped me put myself back together and then helped me through the "to be a missionary or not to be a missionary" quest.

The answer was not to be a missionary at that time. So what is the next thing a young lady recently graduated from college should do? Get married! My bishop didn't like to encourage his singles to migrate to the singles ward. He liked to load us down with 3+ callings to keep us out of trouble. So he took some extra duties on himself.

My dear bishop wanted to help me along towards the next life goal. He began with subtlety. Have I met Tom, the nice single guy in our ward? (The only single guy in our ward under 30.) Yes, I had met him. Bishop told me things about him. Things he thought we had in common, such as coming from a broken family. Tom was shy too. He also had a degree in something intellectual and smarty sounding. Blah blah blah.

I stopped listening and really didn't care to hear more. The bishop suggested I might like to talk to Tom. I told him no, not really. I found Tom disturbing. It was not just that he was unattractive (I've dated some of those) but he was creepy. Something in his eyes made me uncomfortable. He had an icky-ness and didn't seem like anyone I would want to be alone with, especially not on purpose. You know the type, one of those guys who would surprise everyone if he did manage to get married.

My bishop did not get discouraged, but he dropped the subtlety. The next Sunday he asked me what I thought of Tom. I told him honestly that Tom gave me the creeps and I had no interest in him. The bishop told me again about all of Tom's wonderful qualities. What a nice guy he is, he's smart, we've had some of the same problems....snooze. Then he asked me if I wanted to go out with Tom for dinner. What? Excuse me, what did you just say? I thought so, um, no I don't want to go out with Tom for dinner. But thanks for asking. (I wondered if this was Tom's idea or the bishop's.)

He didn't stop there, my persistent spiritual shepherd. He wanted me to get married and he wanted Tom to get married. We should marry each other! Tom might have expressed interest in me, or the bishop might have similarly assaulted him with a flattering description of me and unlike myself he acquiesced. Either way, the bishop stepped way beyond the bounds of his duties.

Since I didn't want to go out with Tom alone, he asked me another question. What if he and his wife invited both of us to go out to dinner with them? It could be a double date. Um, is this a dream or did you really ask me to go on a double date with you, your wife and a guy I don't like? Oh, but it was real and he was serious. Definitely, no.

And still, he persisted. Since I didn't want to go out out with them, what if they invited me and Tom over for dinner with the whole family? Well that's better, not only would the bish and wife be there but their four children and live-in nanny as well. Oh yes. How could I resist such a tempting offer? I'm sure Tom and I would fall in love while sitting at the dinner table: passing the potatoes, picking the flung bits of salad out of each other's hair, ignoring the honking toddler noises, staying out of the adolescents' fights, and praying that the oldest remembered to take her Ritalin. Despite such a sweet offer, I declined while trying to hide my shuddering fear.
Matchmaker, matchmaker, make me a match? Not. And no thank you.

Eventually, Tom got the guts to ask me out himself, but that's another story.

Come back for more TRUE stories of the strange, sad and pathetically hilarious exploits of me not having sex in the city.