A few months back Russell Crowe (name has been changed to protect the privacy of my husband) and I decided to change churches and attend one in Santa Monica. Don't worry, you faithful readers, we are still Mormon, but we decided to go to the church we are actually assigned to. (And, before you think we are being incredibly obedient, we heard this church starts at 10:00 am. Out a 1:00 is a beautiful thing.)
Anyway, this new church has been fantastic. First, it meets in this beautiful old building, which people claim to be one of the first churches in Southern California. I believe them because the tiny pews were definitely made before Mormons found out that Diet Coke and Cafe Rio are great substitutes to alcohol and drugs, and unlike most current churches, this one has a stain glass depiction of Joseph Smith and a mural of...well, to be honest, I'm not sure. The other week Russell and I spoke and had the entire meeting to figure it out - and still all we could come up with is that none of the animals in the mural actually have four legs. (Don't worry, you Mormon conspirators, the lack of four legs is not symbolic to how we see the Catholic church.)
Anyway, outside of the cool building and meeting time, the best part of our new church would definitely be the members. For example, a couple of weeks ago I noticed an older woman tucked a napkin into her shirt, pulled out a tupperware of soup and crackers and proceeded to eat during the lesson. And then if that wasn't cool enough, she then, in between bites, raised her hand and made comments. (While still holding her soup, spoon and napkin tucked in her shirt.) IT was awesome. Secondly, the older ladies in our church call themselves the "Silver Beavers." Need I say more? Lastly, our members, who are teachers, are amazing because, without fail, during a lesson something like this happens:
Teacher: "Does anyone have a story they would like to share about faith?"
Response from member: Long story of how their divorce doesn't make sense because King David had more than one wife.
Teacher: (With a complete straight face) "Thank you for that."
Honestly, its a gift to not start laughing in the middle of all that.
Now, before you think I'm making fun of my new church, please know I have never enjoyed going to church more. I love the absurdity, the unity and the fact that all of us are just trying to be good people. I hope heaven will be much the same.