Someone Who Was Really Good to Me

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My mission, as anyone who has read my blog for very long knows, sucked for the most part.

But one part that didn't suck was my first mission president, who was as good a man as I ever knew. He was extremely kind to me, and I loved him and his family very much.

I found out last night that he died Sunday. I hadn't spoken to him in at least a decade (though he did stay in touch with me fof a good while after I left the church, just call me up every so often to see how I was doing, which tells you something about why I loved him), and I'm really bummed.

6 Comments

That's hard, Holly. I'm sorry.

Very sorry to hear this, Holly. It's hard to lose someone who's been kind and nurturing when you needed it. Wish there were more folks like this.

Any chance of making it to his memorial service?

My sympathies. Some good older friends of mine have died lately, and it is hard.

Sorry to hear it Holly.

Holly: I'm so sorry to hear this. It's hard, isn't it? Especially when they are rare individuals who embody more than the institutions they represent. I felt similarly when the Director of the Berkeley Institute, Brent Collette, died. Totally bummed. It's been seven years, and I'm still bummed.

Yes, Janet, thank you. President Carlson was, after all, a very Mormon man--when I told him, in one of our later conversations, that I hadn't been to church in six or seven years, he replied that he worried about my soul. But his statement wasn't smarmy, or threatening, the way it has been when other priesthood holders said things like that. He really did care about the state of my soul, because he cared about ME, not about the ways in which my actions or beliefs were a commentary on his beliefs.

The news story I link to characterized him as "firm as well as compassionate" and that certainly squares with my experience with him. He was one of the most compassionate men I've ever known. The more I try to cultivate compassion in myself, the more I appreciate it in someone like President Carlson. I really do feel the world is worse off now that he's gone, and I can hardly bear to think of his widow or grandkids. He was only 64.

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This page contains a single entry by Holly published on June 6, 2007 9:37 AM.

Look into My Irises was the previous entry in this blog.

I'm Not Lost is the next entry in this blog.

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