Hugs for Debra!

Note:  This story is part of Middleaged Mormon Man’s “International Hug a Convert Day” celebration. Please join in and read the other wonderful stories shared here as well.

Debra Messenger

As we were conjugating verbs in Latin class, my friend asked me to come to a open house at the church.  She told me it was at the stake center so I envisioned prime rib.

There were very few LDS people or “Mormons” at our school. I was nearly 17, and I had been to many churches – all very lovely people. But I never joined any of them because I felt they did not really know who the Savior was.  But as I entered the Stake Center (which to my disappointment I learned would not be serving prime rib) I looked at the pictures up on the wall and toured the displays. I was loaded with pamphlets and received a Book of Mormon .

I thought these people, unlike the many churches I had visited, seemed to know the Savior..   My mother sprang across the room as soon as she saw the Book Of Mormon and dumped it in the trash then poured coffee grounds over it, along with old macaroni.  She told me that that evil book will not be in my house.

My mom left for work and I retrieved and washed off my Book of Mormon .  I sat under the porch light reading my wet book.  I was touched by the Book of Mormon. I had to hide it each day so my Mom wouldn’t find it. I then sought out the missionaries to teach me more.

The week before my baptism, I was hit by a car on a freeway. A sheriff that had seen the accident told the medical people at the emergency room I must surely have broken bones and severe head injury because I hit the pavement several times as I flew from the impact.   X-rays showed no broken bones. I was one huge torn bruise.  The sheriff implored them to re-check, as he had seen me take a terrible hit.  I was  x-rayed  again with the same results. I was hurting like nothing else, but only had a concussion.  I left on crutches, and I looked a mess.

I received a blessing, and two weeks after the accident I was baptized.  My Mom signed  the paper work for my baptism.  she said “this is just a passing phase you have.”  That was 46  years ago.  I have stayed with the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  `I will be ever thankful to my friend in  that invited me to a open house and shared the gospel with me.

Debra Messenger


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  1. Yeah, I thought it was the “Steak Center”, too. But it’s actually better, isn’t it? Thanks for sharing your story! Just read an article by someone claiming to be a member who sort of implied she didn’t believe in miracles. Hmm.

  2. Thanks for sharing your story. I had similar experiences with “meeting at the Stake House” and just feeling a different spirit around LDS people.

  3. Thanks for sharing your story, and congratulations for sticking with the gospel all these years!

  4. AuntSue
    That was a powerful open house! I don’t think even prime rib could have made it better! (well maybe) So wonderful; Your name sounds so familiar and so is your face. Have you lived inn Oregon?
    Hugs, Hugs, Hugs, for you.

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