Baptizing a Friend

Baptizing a Friend February 16, 2013

Today, my family and I are going to Jackson, WY.

We have done this drive a number of times since living in Wyoming. Initially, we made this drive regularly on our way to Rexburg, Idaho where we used to lived. We still own a house there and many of our dearest and closest friends are still there.

During my congressional campaign, we went out to Jackson because it is the center of liberal money in Wyoming. It is a well-off resort town with many people originally from the west coast and east coast.

Jackson is located in Teton County, WY. Teton county is the only county of the 23 counties in Wyoming that I carried in the election. Yet, Jackson is a completely foreign place to me. I will discuss that more in detail later in the context of the campaign.

Today, we have a different purpose. We are going to a baptism. I am so glad to be making this for a reason other than politics or real estate.

My friend and colleague, Lela, is getting baptized. Lela was the field director for the Wyoming Democratic Party when I started my campaign. After she left Wyoming to join a campaign in Virginia mid-year, she became a senior (volunteer) advisor to my campaign.

Now, Lela is my colleague in a new nonprofit venture.

Lela started investigating the LDS Church while in Virginia. She had met the missionaries before and she is from a town in Montana with a large LDS population.

Lela has received a lot of resistance from family and others about joining The LDS Church. She is Jewish. She is very proud of her Jewish heritage. Her father is an Israeli Zionist.

Yet, here we are a few hours out of Jackson. The baptism is this afternoon.

I am going to be the person baptizing Lela. I have baptized my two oldest children, but I have not baptized an adult since my mission.

Now, I talk about my religion a lot. I talk about religion like my 10-year-old son talks about baseball. I do it all the time. Yet, I do not proselytize. Even in my politics or philosophy, I am not looking for converts. This is unusual for a Mormon.

I am very happy for Lela. It is not so much that I am happy that she is becoming a Mormon, but I think that she will find happiness within Mormonism.

Oh, and there is now one more LDS Dem. 🙂

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