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Temple Wedding
  1. Persona non grata
  2. How little do you know me after all these years?
  3. A question of perspective
  4. The people who weren't allowed to attend the ceremony in the temple
  5. You can't choose your family
  1. Young Women's
  2. Youth Conference
  3. Saturday's Warrior
  4. Brigham Young University
  5. Polygamist
  6. Temple Wedding
  7. Orem High
  8. Bordeaux Mission
  9. Exmo Conference
Temple Wedding

Everyone repeated "amen," some a little grumblingly, and then Rex's mom started taking people's bowls one by one and ladling chili into them as Rex's sister Joy cut the cornbread and started distributing it, passing along the honey-butter with each slice.

I ate a spoonful of chili and then turned to Rex's mom. "Mmm, this is very good," I said. I was kind of wondering what I should call her. Sister Wendell? Mrs. Wendell? Cheryl? Surely not "mom." Both Joe and Sam nodded in agreement.

"Thank you Lynn," she said. "This is just a little something I like to throw together when I know I'm going to have a lot of people over."

Then Rex's dad turned to Jared. "Jared," he said, "How's your Eagle Scout project going?"

"Um, okay," he said, glancing over at the two other boys as if kind of embarrassed that he might be bothering to make an effort in something as dorky as scouting.

"Oh, it's coming along just great!" said Rex's mom. "It's so thrilling that we'll finally have an Eagle Scout in this family." Rex continued eating without showing any visible reaction to his mom's statement.

"Are you boys in scouting?" she asked Sam and Joe. It was a bit of a ridiculous question since participation in Boy Scouts is mandatory for LDS boys. Unsurprisingly they both said yes.

"Sam, have you earned your Eagle rank yet?" she asked.

"Oh, yeah, I got it when I was fourteen," said Sam. "Both my brothers did too. My mom pushed us really hard." Then looking around at everyone's faces it seemed to dawn on him that that was exactly the wrong thing to say.

She turned to Joe. "And what about you, Joe?"

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"I've been participating," he said, "but I think I probably won't make it to Eagle." I suspected that this was because he had only just started the program when he moved in with his aunt and uncle, but Joe was too wise, discrete, or perhaps just too shy to mention that.

Rex's mom said "Ah, that's too bad," and gave him this sympathetic half-smile that seemed to indicate that Joe's response at least partially compensated for Sam's.

Jill turned to Rex and asked "What's your apartment like?"

"It's a small, one-bedroom apartment in a five-story brick apartment building," he replied.

"Rex!" his mother said. "Do you have to remind the other kids about the bedroom? You know I'm not happy with the bad example you're setting for your younger sisters and brother, living in sin like that."

"Well, I'm sorry I mentioned it, then," he said, "but I don't think anyone here is in the dark about what the situation is. Lynn and I are paying for our own apartment, and no, we're not just apartment mates chastely living in separate bedrooms."

Then she turned to me, "Lynn, aren't your parents ashamed of you for living in sin?"

"Stop it right there, Mom," said Rex. "You can say what you want to me, but you are not to address Lynn in this manner."

Then Rex's dad piped up. "Rex," he said, "I don't think you understand how disappointed your mother and I are in the example you're setting for your younger siblings."

"Ah, so you're saying it would be terrible if they followed in my footsteps and graduated from college with honors and then got accepted into a Ph.D. program in Mathematics in one of the top ranked math departments in the country?" asked Rex.

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