Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Saying Goodbye to Celia

Previously: What I Left Out Of My Book

My favorite thing about this blog has always been the comments that follow each post. That's where my real learning takes place, as readers share their knowledge, opinions, interpretations, and insights gathered from their own studies. Often they'll mention helpful links to other online resources, all of which serves to give both me and the other readers a fuller understanding of the subject under discussion.  Sometimes we'll veer far from the original topic, but I don't care.  I like watching the conversation go wherever the readers want to take it. Discussions are not always orderly or on-point around here, and often things go wildly off topic. But that's fine by me. 

Over the years many regulars have become friends here, not just to me, but to the entire Pure Mormonism community of regulars. So today this post is going to be a bit different from my usual entries. This one will be a tribute to a departing friend.  The commenter originally known by the username "LDSDPER" will soon be crossing over into eternity.  She has, at best, only a few days left on this planet, and so before she goes I wanted to share with her what her friendship has meant to me. My hope is that I'll get this written in time to have her husband read it to her before she's gone.

LDSDPER is without a doubt the most readily recognized commenter on this blog -and the most prolific. She often posted several comments a day, sometimes simply expressing herself, other times engaging in conversations with other readers.  Eventually she announced she was going to change her username to something a bit more pronounceable, but then she admitted she couldn't readily come up with any ideas. To those of us who had come to know her, somehow that seemed entirely in character.

So, not being able to think of anything better, for the time being she dubbed herself "NoNameForNow."  The name was intended to be temporary, but now it is enshrined as the permanent name of a good friend who did not know her last comment would be her last one when she wrote it in July. Now that she has no further need for anonymity, I have been permitted to reveal the identity of this woman who has become a friend to many here. Her name is Celia. Celia Scheinost.

Celia had become increasingly frail and helpless for some months, until pretty much the only thing she could do was sit at her keyboard and type.  The cancer had taken over her body in these final months to the point she could no longer walk outside, or stand in her kitchen, or even hobble her way through her own home.  But she could still sit at her computer and manage to type.  So she expended what energy she had engaging in this community. This blog, and the people who frequent it, were her friends. This was her community, the people with which she had so much more in common than anywhere else. And so she stayed here and chatted until she could manage to chat no more.

Celia's husband, Craig, took her to the hospital when things got so bad that even she no longer protested about going. When everything that could be done for her there was done, Craig brought her home Saturday to spend her remaining days in her own bed. Craig wrote me on Sunday that her first day home, she asked him to read aloud to her from the Book of Mormon, which he did for 45 minutes.  Then she asked him to read a few pages from my book, which she had started before she got too weak to finish.   They are three quarters of the way through it, and Celia is determined to finish it before she goes.  I told Craig to tell her she should focus on the Book of Mormon. I mean, really. What difference does my silly book mean at this point?

Celia and I have been corresponding by email ever since she learned my own wife had been somewhat of an invalid herself.  A year or two ago we spoke on the phone, and after I handed the phone to Connie, the two of them became fast friends and spoke for hours.  Connie can clearly identify with what Celia has been going through.

Until recently, Celia gave no hints to the other readers of this blog that she was experiencing such serious health problems. In fact, most readers didn't even suspect she was a woman. She was cryptic and protective of her privacy, and one reason she embraced this community was because her family had come to feel misunderstood and ostracized by their home ward.  Over time she came to mention in her comments that they had adopted their three children, at least one had been a special needs child, and that sometimes members of their ward in Wisconsin had difficulty coping with one or all of them.

The children were either "special needs" or extremely precocious -take your pick. Their oldest daughter was not shy about voicing her objections in church when she saw the official narrative they were feeding her didn't gel with the scriptures. She came to realize early on that the Church history she had been taught had been largely whitewashed and bowdlerized. As a teenager she brought things up in class that teachers did not know how to react to, and so she was made to understand that her "doubts" were dangerous and she should keep them to herself. Craig and Celia had found another daughter in a Romanian orphanage, malnourished and neglected at five years old. The oldest boy has high functioning autism, and was often a challenge to Sunday School teachers   Ward members did not know how to handle him, so they would often end up treating him badly.

Celia's sister told me the entire family was eventually treated like they were the ward weirdos. "It's like 'well, you're not like us, so we don't know what to do with you.' "

In time, feeling shunted aside, the family withdrew to their house in the woods and relied on their home ward less and less. Celia found the caliber of Mormons who read my blog more to her liking, and we became her church community. Before long she was engaged in stimulating conversations here with many of the other readers. Like many Mormons similarly disaffected, she was finding fulfillment in a spiritual community in cyberspace that did not seem to exist inside a chapel.

Celia frequently apologized to me for the length of her comments, and how she often strayed off topic. But like I said, I like watching the conversations go wherever the readers take them.  A lot of my readers prefer things free-form as well.

And besides, Celia's diversions were part of her charm. She had an eccentric style of writing that made her posts instantly recognizable to everyone on the board; just about every time she wrote a single sentence, that sentence was followed by double spacing, as if each and every sentence was a paragraph of its own.  Frequently she would do this with sentence fragments, too, framing a loose phrase with double hyphens front and back, as if to give it emphasis.  So with her posts, there was lots of space between each thought. If you were going to read a comment posted by LDSDPER, you had to be prepared to do a lot of scrolling.

Other readers would engage with Celia in stimulating theological discussions, some that would continue for days, and all of us would benefit from the wisdom of the collective conversation.  It will surprise none of the regulars, then, to learn that Celia has no fear of dying. She is excitedly looking forward to moving into the next phase. Her biggest regret will be leaving her husband and children behind.  But she almost can't wait to meet Jesus again, and to see her young niece, Delsa, who died nine years ago after a difficult struggle with cystic fibrosis.

Regular readers will be familiar with the commenter who often posts here under the name MajorJohnButtrick. Major John is the husband of Celia's sister, who is Celia's closest friend and confidant. Delsa was their daughter.

All of Celia's children are now grown, and all are accomplished musicians. Her son, the one with autism, is 29 and a brilliant pianist. Eldest daughter, 25, is a harpist who provides atmosphere at fine restaurants and special events. And their youngest, the girl Craig and Celia rescued from that orphanage in Romania, is a brilliant First Chair violinist currently in high demand. I'm told she could work in any orchestra she chose to. So although these children had their difficulties, they were raised in a very loving home and rose above their challenges.  Sometimes the best thing one can do for one's children is to get them away from adults and teachers who see only their limitations.

Here's A Story You Won't Hear In Sacrament Meeting
Major John told me an interesting story on the phone yesterday. He and his family live in Texas, where there's a state lottery. So recently he was in the shower when he received distinct instructions from the spirit that he should drive to a particular Shell station and buy a lottery ticket.

He thought "that's bizarre, because I don't play the lottery." He is, after all, a devout Mormon, and it is not in his makeup to gamble, not even once in awhile. Still, he was told quite clearly to go to that location and buy a Scratcher. He saw in a vision the precise look and colors on the particular Scratcher he was directed to buy.

(For those who live in states where there is no lottery, a Scratcher is a ticket sold at gas stations and convenience stores, usually for a dollar each. There are up to a dozen different varieties of scratchers with different themes, just like you'd see different themes on slot machines in a casino. The buyer scratches off the numbers on the card, and if three numbers come up the same, he wins the amount shown.)

The spirit told John to first tell his wife what he was supposed to do, then take her with him and together they would buy the ticket. So John got dried off and went and told his wife what he had heard. She looked at him for a moment, then grabbed her purse and said, "Okay, let's go."

When they got to the gas station, John asked the attendant for two scratchers of the type he had seen in his vision. He immediately heard a voice say, "I only told you to buy one."

So John bought just the one.

This wouldn't be much of a story if it didn't turn out that ticket won. It did. That one dollar Scratcher hit at $500.00, which just happens to be the highest amount you can win if you want to get paid instantly. So they cashed it in and got paid instantly, and on the way home of course they began to wonder what the money was supposed to be used for. Was it to go toward Delsa's significant medical bills? That was the obvious explanation because even nine years after their daughter's death, no matter how much they paid toward that massive debt each month, it seems it would never be paid off. They couldn't quite get confirmation about that though, so they decided for the time being they'd take the money home and sit on it until they got some kind of answer.

Two hours later, Linda gets a call from her sister Celia. Celia's in the hospital. The cancer is stage four, having completely taken over her body. She may not last a week. Celia knows John and Linda don't have much means to do so, but is there any possible way Linda can come up and be with her before the end comes?

The purpose for that lottery money instantly revealed itself, and Linda was on her way. She is with her sister now. Celia is fortunate to have the comfort of her husband and children with her as she exits this life, as well as the only friend she has in the world who truly understands her.


Celia discovered this blog during the height of the 2012 presidential election season when a piece I wrote was linked at The Daily Paul, a sort of clearinghouse for those with libertarian leanings that was then receiving a million hits a day. She was delighted to learn there was an entire universe of fellow Mormons who shared her outlook, and she Private Messaged me.  Afterward, when she commented on my blog, she reminded me she was "the LDS Daily Paul-er" who had written me previously, and she subsequently used a form of that as her username, shortening it to LDSDPER.  I'm sure most everyone here has wondered why she picked such an awkward moniker. Now you know what it means.

As Celia's health continued to fail, the family's circumstances declined also. Craig's work hours have been reduced to 35 hours a week -every other week. When I announced the availability of my new book, she excitedly commented on how she was counting down the days -eight- until they would have some money so they could order a copy.  I would not allow it. Although I didn't have any hard copies of my own to give her, I immediately emailed her a pdf copy I converted from my final draft.  No way was she expected to shell out for my stupid little book.

Besides, I recalled that Celia was not even able to hold a book any longer. She had mentioned previously the difficulty she had holding up Daymon Smith's first book. It was just too heavy.  Craig has been printing out the document versions of those books, which she would then read by holding up one page at a time.  So now Craig was able to print my book out on her printer, which she picked up and read page by printed page.

Among the many things Celia has written about here in recent months, the thing that has clearly made a difference to both her and Craig has been the decision to follow the advice of Daymon Smith and give the Book of Mormon a fresh reading, without thinking about it in terms of its relationship to the bible, and unencumbered by Sunday School manuals, commentaries, Church teachings, and other filters.  Just the pure Book of Mormon, as given to us in 1830 before the first converts corrupted it with their muddied interpretations. Celia has exclaimed many times what a difference that has made in her understanding of what the Lord's purpose was in our reading of it.

She has come to realize that the Book of Mormon as it was originally given to us is really the only thing we latter-day Saints should be concerning ourselves with for now. Not "the Church," not all these claims of priesthood authority, not the counsel to follow the leaders, not the countless rules and checklists that have become stumbling blocks that get in our way. Not the conference talks and articles in the Ensign. Not even, for the time being, the Doctrine and Covenants.  Before all else, even before we pick up and read the other Standard Works, it's necessary for us to go back to our roots and read just the Book of Mormon in it's simplicity. If re-examined by itself, independent of the noisy trappings piled onto it by the LDS Church, that book will lead us to Christ.

Celia has been reading it the way it was meant to be read. And she's ready. Any day now she will be in the arms of Jesus Christ.

The rest of us can only envy her.

                                                               *****
One Final Request
Actually, two final requests. First, this is your chance to say goodbye to our mutual friend. I'm certain many of you feel the same as I do; that Celia has been an integral part of this community, and she will be greatly missed. I honestly don't know how I'll get used to her absence on this forum.

But if we're lucky, she'll stick around long enough so that her husband has the chance to read aloud some of your final words to her. At this time, Celia is lucid and aware, so please feel free to share your feelings in the comment section below.  Most of us don't usually have a chance to pay tribute to our friends while they're still around. This time we do have a small window of opportunity while our friend is still with us.

Here's my second request: Celia's family does not have the means to cover funeral and medical costs. Naturally we can't expect to cover everything, but we can make a dent. I know my readers are a generous lot; many of you need merely hear of a need, and you're on it. So if the Lord happens to inspire you to send a few dollars to this family to assist them in this difficult time, I hope you will do so. I know Celia will rest much easier knowing the family was given a leg up by her friends.

MajorJohnButtrick has assisted Craig in setting up a Paypal account into which contributions can be deposited. The email address to use for that is  cscheinost@charter.net

For those who would rather send a donation by check, the address is:
Craig Scheinost
909 S. 10th Ave.
Wausau, WI 54401

Just a few days ago I happened to make mention on Facebook that my bank account had been hacked and my rent money stolen out from under me. I mentioned that just to point out how foolish I had been because I felt I was immune from that sort of thing. I thought that because I almost never had any money in the bank, thieves would find nothing to steal. I was wrong. They can always take the rent money.

Days later, some donations from virtual strangers appeared, which caught me by surprise because I was certainly not soliciting donations, nor seeking pity. Connie and I had, however, prayed that the Lord would assist us in getting us out of this fix so we could make the rent, and as these offers of help came in, I immediately recognized this was His way of answering our prayers.

The amount we were short was $500.00. We ended up being blessed with more than that, so now that  our immediate needs have been met and the rent paid, I have sent the excess on to Craig and Celia.

I will tell you something I believe with all my heart, and it's a belief I have arrived at through my own experience. Those few people who sent us assistance will soon find themselves blessed for the kindness they showed to us. Most likely that blessing will arrive in the form of added prosperity on their heads.  That's how the Lord works when you are generous with your means. Money flows out, and then it flows right back in, often in greater abundance.  But here's what is more exciting: Their kindness has multiplied by my having forwarded their gifts on to those more worthy than us.  The givers may as well brace themselves, because they're going to be blessed with even greater abundance.  It may not always work out like this when you give to an institution, but it does when you give to individuals. That's how the universe works, my friends. You ALWAYS come out ahead.

Now go thou and do likewise.



88 comments:

Jon said...

Sad to hear about Celia. It's been awhile since I've frequented this blog with comments. Celia, I hope well for those you will be leaving and I am sad to hear that you will be leaving.

Anonymous said...

Long time reader, first time commenter, here. Rock, we met at Sunstone, but I don't expect you remember in all the rush after Denver's session. Thank you for this loving tribute to our friend.

Celia, I cannot emphasize enough how stirring and uplifting your comments have been. You speak truth and I am better for having *virtually* sat at your feet and learned from your journey. Go with God, dear friend. All my love to you and your beautiful family.

And Major John B., please continue to comment as often as you can. Your insights are always so clear and helpful, a highlight of any post.

Karla

Connie Waterman said...

I love you Celia, my friend. I am saddened by this news, for the sake of your dear family. I am so happy that your years of suffering will be finally at an end. Very soon you will be with our dear Savior and friend, Jesus.

Bless you our dear sister with the peace, grace and mercy that only Christ can and will bring. Having gone to be with Him, but was lovingly sent back, I know the pure love that awaits you!

Nate said...

Wonderful tribute about a wonderful human being. She is one of God's elect. Only God knows how the ripples of her life have blessed countless people.

Vaughn Hughes said...

Celia, I rejoice that we've been blessed with your wisdom here on Rock's site for so long. Thank you, dear sister. We will miss your voice here but expect that your coming birth into the next world will be glorious and beautiful! My thanks and love to you and your family. May the Lord bless and keep you in this brief transition.

Anonymous said...

Celia, Thank you so much for you comments here on this blog. I have enjoyed reading them and have agreed with the things you have shared. Reading this blog about you has made me cry, but I am so glad you are looking forward to meeting Jesus. I bet He will be waiting with arms wide open for you, as will your niece and other family members. I will say prayers for your husband, children and extended family. I hope to meet you one day on the other side. God Bless! Lynn

greg norton said...

My prayers are with you. I in madison, WI, and am fairly close to wausa. Although we aren't in the same stake, Its good to know that there are other fellow saints out there in Wisconsin with open minds and hearts to the pure gospel of Jesus Christ.

If you ever want an impromptu hometeacher, my wife and would be more than glad to meet with a fellow saint and puremormonism frequenter.

God Bless,

Greg

Kerri said...

Hello Celia--
I am new here and myself sorry that I didn't get to meet you. Thank you for taking care of three of God's amazing angels and giving them the gift of love and of confidence. Prayers for love and peace for your family at this time. And I'll bet Jesus can't wait to see YOU. A bientot, my sister.
Kerri

Cate said...

Celia,
Have a peaceful journey and a blessed homecoming. You are a beautiful soul headed for more light, more beauty, and more love.

My condolences to Celia's family. May your hearts be lifted as you learn to live apart a while.

Cate

spiritualchemy said...

Go in love, Celia. Godspeed.

Kevin said...

Oh Celia, Rock has done us a favor in connecting us with you and Major John. I'm honored that you responded to several of my comments--always with clarity and in a spirit of friendship.

It's a pity you couldn't slip back and provide us some tips--about anything! By definition we're in murky water here on earth, starting with religion. Like you, thousands of us have resonated to what Rock is saying, not because he has somehow poisoned our minds with some dark delusion, but because we see in his essays things that we've been feeling and wondering about for a long time. If you find you have any pull on the other side, consider nudging some blessings Rock and Connie's way.

I love the story of your children making their way upstream toward fulfillment and joy. Surely you'll continue to lend you love and energy to them and your beloved after you graduate. Go well, sister. Give Jesus a hug for the rest of us.

Stephen said...

So sorry for her and for all of you.

Joy L. said...

Au revoir, dear Celia.

You have a beautiful soul. I always loved reading your words, and I told you once (a few months ago, and I don't do that kind of thing every day!) that I loved you. I remember once that you posted about having no one to sit with in Relief Society, and I thought "Me too!" and felt an instant kinship with you. I would have loved to sit next to you in that lonely meeting.

I love the way you write, and always wished I could copy your style...your posts reminded me of poetry lines. So simple. So profound. I am edified, lifted, and a better person because you were in this world. And like you, I am passionate about the Book of Mormon, that book of books!

God speed, dear sister. I hope to meet you on the other side.

Love, Joy Ledingham

MajJohnButtrick said...

Rock,

Thank you so much for your beautiful post about my sister-in-law and her family. I appreciate everyone's kind thoughts, prayers and support on Celia's family's behalf. What happened to me with the lottery ticket is kind of like Matthew 17:27. "Notwithstanding, lest we should offend them, go thou to the sea, and cast an hook, and take up the fish that first cometh up; and when thou hast opened his mouth, thou shalt find a piece of money: that take, and give unto them for me and thee." More than the money (which was needed), it's nice to know that Heavenly Father is mindful of us. Love to all.

Taylor said...

Goodbye for now Celia. Til we meet in Zion.

LeShel said...

Love to Celia and all of her family. I always read your comment name as LDS deeper(Dpr) it fit you perfectly. Deeper. Carry On!

Anonymous said...

I've never been to this blog before... but if it's Celia tested- "It's mother approved."
Celia is my friend from our virtual homeschool group and I dearly love her and her family.
I have kept every note, every card and memories of every conversation through the years. I love her and know that she will get to be held in the arms of our Savior soon enough. I thought of her as "our Celia" from "our board" and now I see she is your Celia as well. Of course she is... We are each blessed to have her in our lives. Thank you for sharing your post.

Rodney said...

Celia,
You and your family are in my prayers. Enjoy the next phase of your journey.

Rodney said...

Rock,
I do have to let you know that I believe that this is the best post you gave ever written, and thank you for all the light you bring into my life.

imatharris said...

Celia,

I have not been one that frequents the comment sections on many blogs, but I feel like I would be missing out on a special opportunity if I didn't. I haven't actually read any of your posts, but I can truly feel the love and concern you must have had for many of those you were in conversation with. You have touched many, you have comforted many, you have ministered to the emotional needs of others. In this life you have been a "ministering angel" in the flesh and I don't doubt that you will continue with that mission on the other side. May you and your family find the peace and comfort in your last earthly moments together.

With much love,
Tami Harris

Veracity said...

Dear Celia,

It was emotional for me to read about your story. I can only imagine the love you gave to your children and how that benefited them. This inspires me in a way I greatly need. With love we can overcome.

Thanks for your influential message about reading the Book of Mormon in its original form, etc.

I pray that comfort permeates your home.

Love,

Veracity

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful tribute! God bless you Celia with His Grace. May you and your loved ones find comfort and peace in these days. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and insights on Rock's blog.

Melissa. Xo

CBrown said...

Thank you for this post, Rock. Celia, may you have a peaceful transition onto your next adventure. Thank you for the light you brought here.

Marla said...

I've known Celia for many years through another forum. She is a beautiful soul and I wish her joy as she moves beyond our view. May her family find comfort through the Atonement of Christ.

Tisha said...

I, too, know Celia from anther forum. I love her writing and insight. I will miss her. I wish I would have known about this site before now. I have missed reading Celia's posts. I could have been here all along. Celia always prayed for the Lord to come. Now she will get to go to him. God Speed to a friend that I never got the chance to meet. I will miss you.

nevadanista said...

This is an absolutely beautiful, moving tribute. I'm kind of new to your blog and haven't delved into reading many comments yet, but now I have getting to know Celia to look forward to, as well as more of your writings. Godspeed to Celia on her journey home.

Rachel

Steven Lester said...

I'm glad for you, ma'm. I envy you more than you know. The moment you pass over the pain will end forever, never to be felt again. Your Savior will be there, because He always is when we return, as thousands of reports have shown. And then you will also know the truth of all things, of the questions you have always had about everything, but could never find the answers to. The atmosphere is Pure Love, as you will be yourself. The moment of passage is instantaneous, when suddenly you will feel powerful again, speak only with telepathy, and care not about the world you have just left ever again.

When you meet Jesus, as you realize how close to Him you really are, if you can remember in the midst of all of the excitement, tell Him that I don't particularly want to meet Him whenever I pass, as He would represent only a gigantic accusation to my own insignificance and worthlessness. You, however, have achieved great things, and can face the Savior with confidence and joy.

Au Revoir, my friend. Perhaps someday we might meet in that better place.

Steven D. Lester
Des Moines, WA

Motis B. Totis said...

Well, when you get there...

Tell everyone I said hey

Anonymous said...

Celia,

Thank you for you love, your voice, and your spirit. May you depart this Telestial world in peace, from the loving arms of your family here into the loving arms of your family there. Godspeed.

Mike

Kevin said...

You may be surprised, Steven, by your future joyous reception on the other side. While Jesus literally loves everyone, it is only the humble and repentant that accept his grace. If I can claim you just as you are I'm confident that Jesus does too--both in this sliver of the eternal now as well as that glorious day when you graduate. Peace and good strength to you, brother.

Frederick said...

Celia,

My heart goes out to you and your family. This blog will not be the same without your presence. You will be sorely and deeply missed.

I know you are going home, and what a joyous reunion you will have, but the temporary separation here will certainly be painful for those who know you. I can't imagine how it must be for your husband and children.

We will keep them in our prayers!!!!

We will pray for your family!

God bless you all!

Frederick

CMS said...

Celia~ Your story has touched me deeply. I have tears in my eyes, and goosebumps all over. Well done, kind and lovely servant.

When I get where I'm going
On the far side of the sky
The first thing that I'm gonna do
Is spread my wings and fly

I'm gonna land beside a lion
And run my fingers through his mane
Or I might find out what it's like
To ride a drop of rain

I'm gonna walk with my grand daddy
And he'll match me step for step
And I'll tell him how I missed him
Every minute since he left

Then I'll hug his neck
So much pain and so much darkness
In this world we stumble through
All these questions I can't answer
So much work to do

But when I get where I'm going
And I see my maker's face
I'll stand forever in the light
Of his amazing grace

Yeah when I get where I'm going
There'll be only happy tears
Hallelujah

I will love and have no fear
When I get where I'm going
There'll be only happy tears

I will shed the sins and struggles
I have carried all these years
And I'll leave my heart wide open
I will love and have no fear
Yeah when I get where I'm going
Don't cry for me down here

Charles Call said...

Celia,

I've been a longtime reader of this blog but this is my first comment I've made. I have read your many comments on this blog and have noticed a common theme in all of them: a longing for a better world, for greater light, and a loneliness for your Savior. May you soon rest in His everlasting arms of love. Thank you for your presence in this community.

Godspeed Celia,

Chuck Call
St. Paul, MN

ask seek knock said...

I am recently new so I can see I have a lot of reading to do. Rock , your story of Celia touched me so deeply. I look forward to getting to know her through what she has written. The story of her children is so inspiring, my heart just melted.
Farewell, Beautiful Lady...Godspeed on your journey Home where I know you will continue to bless and serve all His children.

Anonymous said...

If Captain Moroni were a blogger, I believe he'd write the way you do, Rock.

Shawn Cloward said...

I do not know Celia, but warm wishes to you sister.

I do want to offer a second (or third, or fourth, etc.) witness to what has been said about going back to the simplicity of the Book of Mormon. Let it build your faith and beliefs, not the other way around. This has been driven home so strongly to me lately by the Spirit.

Nate said...

Community

May I offer something to pray about that I think is timely. So sorry to put this on Celia's tribute comments but A good brother pointed out what is going on with Denver Snuffer. Change and confusion are coming to a lot of people and things will only continue to grow until everything is in upheaval.
I have prayed and felt a spiritual witness that the aaronic priesthood is still in the LDS church, and it is in the temple lot church, and denver snuffer has it....
There is going to be a lot of debate about whether denver snuffer or the LDS church has the priesthood etc because Denver claimed the LDS church has lost all authority because they ex-communicated him.
I just thought if you are wrestling with this that you may want to see one more option of what the truth could be and seek truth for yourself. It is entirely possible that the denver snuffer could have the priesthood and the LDS church could as well and God will still ratify baptisms in either way. Such was the case in the Book of Mormon at different times.
I believe when David Whitmer left the church he did not lose the priesthood. And God could choose to still raise another branch away from Denver's group and the LDS church. Ver strange act indeed.

Linda said...

Linda,

LDS Deeper,

That is a good handle, because your comments invite readers to look deeper, especially deeper into the Book of Mormon.

I'm not well-versed on Paypal. I have donated to other blogs, but they all had a donate button which made it easy for the "challenged" to make a donation.

Someone please help me find the donate button so I can make a donation to our precious Deeper.

tired toady said...

Linda, there is no "Donate Button"
you go to PayPal.com and transfer to their account: cscheinost@charter.net

Sachiko said...

I know Celia from other boards, and have visited here a few times at her recommendation. She's been an aunt to me and has assisted me in some very serious, important healing in mortality. I love her and will miss her terribly.

It does my heart good to see others see her worth like I do! She always told me she was an obscure homebody, but she has been an influential angel and soon goes to Jesus, as she's longed for. we will miss you here, Celia, but I know you're going on to do more work on the other side! Those angels must need you, too.

Linda said...

Thank you tired toady.

I have now sent my fast offering money for a good purpose.

Blessing on you,

Linda

truthseeker said...

god speed dear sister Celia (my great grand mother's name). it is angelic women like you ,my dear mum and Connie Waterman who minister to me in a most profound way. may the Lord be with you always and may your family find comfort peace and consolation from He who is mighty to save. we love you here downunder (Australia). Julio.

Martin Harris Luther said...

Celia,

If everyone commented on blogs the way you have done, the world would be a better place. Your comments have always managed to find the right balance between being bold, sincere, and respectful. Most people only achieve one or two of those things at a time.

And because your style is so unique and forthright, I have felt a kinship with you that I didn't think possible with someone I only know through a comment board. Now that Rock has shared your story, I see more fully how your life experiences have shaped your perspective and how you have come to be such a compassionate human being. You are a real friend to me, and many others here, and while we will miss you dearly, we also rejoice as you fly to a world without sorrow.

Love to you and your family, - Martin

Denver Snuffer said...

Celia:
If you are still reading comments, please know prayers are with you. We all get only a brief sojourn here, and then return to what is real. This place is an illusion, filled with foolishness parading as importance. In the end you take with you the love of others, the good you have done, and our Lord's continuing work to bring to pass our immortality and eternal life. You leave behind those who will miss you, but join many more who will welcome you.
All my best to you and your family;
-Denver Snuffer

Gary Hunt said...

Celia,

As I have reflected upon your comments over the last few years and how you have conducted yourself, there are two words which come to mind. Wisdom and love. These words describes your character.

I have listed a link to a beautiful song "Bless The Road" which is sung by Mary Black. It was written by Steve Cooney about a mother sending a child off into the world, but it has some sentiments which I find meaningful.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eX9lMoN-kng

Our prayers, love and appreciation are with you and your family.

Anonymous said...

As a shady underground mormon serial blog reader-but-never-contributer/stalker, LDSPER was among a small handful of people who's opinion I found myself consistently trusting.

Probably more than anything it was the Christlike way that she treated even the most irritatingly condescending of fellow churchmembers/leaders/friends/blog commenters/meanderinginternetlunatics.

Watching her respond to these kinds of difficulties and criticisms with both clarity and a seemingly unending well of kindness (and of course lots of line breaks to make it easy to visually identify her posts!) has been very inspiring. All the more so in the context of these tremendous health challenges that by and large we were all unaware of.

Thanks Celia, and good luck on the next phase!

Roy Moore said...

Dear Sister Celia,
Thank you for helping me in my personal journey of finding truth. Well done beloved Sister.
Your brother in Christ.

Megan said...

Celia,

It's so amazing to see the beautiful ripple affect that you, even through something as simple as blog comments, have made on others. I can recall many times being in awe of your kindness and compassion for others. Your message of the Book of Mormon and your love of the Savior really resonated with me. Thank you for always having the courage to say the things you have shared here. Thanks for allowing Rock to share some of your beautiful life story with us. It has touched my heart.
Sending many prayers of comfort to you and your family as you are separated for a time. We will all miss you around here, but we are happy that you will be in the arms of our Savior. I hope to meet you on the other side someday. :)God bless!
Love,
Megan Stewart

Megan said...

Celia,

It's so amazing to see the beautiful ripple affect that you, even through something as simple as blog comments, have made on others. I can recall many times being in awe of your kindness and compassion for others. Your message of the Book of Mormon and your love of the Savior really resonated with me. Thank you for always having the courage to say the things you have shared here. Thanks for allowing Rock to share some of your beautiful life story with us. It has touched my heart.
Sending many prayers of comfort to you and your family as you are separated for a time. We will all miss you around here, but we are happy that you will be in the arms of our Savior. I hope to meet you on the other side someday. :)God bless!
Love,
Megan Stewart

MajJohnButtrick said...

@All,

Just an update. Celia is reading your comments (or rather, they are being read to her). She hasn't gone through all of them yet. She's of course very ill, and needs to rest a lot, not to mention all of the other interruptions with hospice care, etc. She sends her love and is very appreciative of all of the kind words and prayers and feels sustained from them. She still often feels overwhelmed and is not used to this kind of attention :). Thank you again, and she sends her love and appreciation to all.

Annalea said...

Celia, you have blessed my life, and I'm so grateful that you chose Jesus above all else. May He comfort and bless you now, in His glorious and beautiful name. Amen.

Anonymous said...

Celia, I am so glad that Rock made this post. You have been in my thoughts and I was wondering if you were not doing well. I am crying as I write this, but not so much for you as for those that will be left behind missing you. Thank you so much for your friendship and counsel and for taking time to respond to my emails. I truly feel I am losing a friend. I had a dream several nights ago that I had died but could not bring myself to allow my spirit to leave my home and family. I hovered there unable to bring myself to leave. I woke up from that dream very burdened and spent all day pondering it. Somehow it makes sense to me now, knowing that you will be leaving this mortal life soon. I will miss writing to you but I know you will be with Jesus. I will be praying for you and for your family. Thank you again so much for your friendship. I am sorry this comment is rather personal, but I wasn't sure if an email would find its way to you.
God's Blessings on you and your family. Goodbye for now to a friend, but I know we will meet in heaven one day.
Homeschool Mom

Anonymous said...

Celia, I am so glad that Rock made this post. You have been in my thoughts and I was wondering if you were not doing well. I am crying as I write this, but not so much for you as for those that will be left behind missing you. Thank you so much for your friendship and counsel and for taking time to respond to my emails. I truly feel I am losing a friend. I had a dream several nights ago that I had died but could not bring myself to allow my spirit to leave my home and family. I hovered there unable to bring myself to leave. I woke up from that dream very burdened and spent all day pondering it. Somehow it makes sense to me now, knowing that you will be leaving this mortal life soon. I will miss writing to you but I know you will be with Jesus. I will be praying for you and for your family. Thank you again so much for your friendship. I am sorry this comment is rather personal, but I wasn't sure if an email would find its way to you.
God's Blessings on you and your family. Goodbye for now to a friend, but I know we will meet in heaven one day.
Homeschool Mom

Anonymous said...

Sorry about the double comments! My computer was being dumb.
Homeschool Mom

Inspire said...

Celia,

Your humility and thought-out comments have always been a highlight to me. I look forward to the day that we meet in person. It may be sooner than we think.

With the utmost respect and love,

--Inspire

Anonymous said...

Celia, this is Liv from LDFR. You will be missed. :( But before you go, I want you to know that you impacted my life. I didn't always agree with what you said, but I learned from you that there is more than one kind of Mormon. And it was ok that I was another different kind of Mormon too. I learned that following Heavenly Father in my life can sometimes upset local leaders and that is ok. I am doing the right thing even if they don't agree. What matters is the relationship with my Heavenly Father, not my relationship with them.
Love you Celia.
Lov
Liv

Steve said...

Celia,

I saw your comments here and if nothing else knew that you were fervent in your beliefs. I pray the Lord will be with you and yours.

Steve

Minorityofone said...

Celia

I am new to the blogging world but I have read some of Rock's writings now and have been touched by some of your thoughtful comments. No doubt heaven will be more beautiful when you arrive. Obviously you have made a profound impact on many people here and you will be remembered and missed. Look forward to seeing you.

Jaelene said...

Celia I hope there is enough time for you to hear all the messages for you. This if Jae from the other boards. I miss you already. I am a better person, mother, wife, teacher to my children because of you. You have had such an amazing spiritual strength and I have been inspired by you many times. Thank you so much for being my friend, for including me in your life, for not judging me when so many others were. Many times I have posted seeking advice, guidance and opinions from other and you responded and it was always helpful. Your positive, spiritual view is so strong and something many are trying attain but I think few actually reach your depth. I dread the next time I post needing advice, opinions or thoughts of others. I know others will respond, they will help but I will miss your response deeply. You have said many times tat your an insignificant person, that affects no one, that no one admires, looks up to or is inspired by. You are so wrong about that Celia. There are many people here, at LDFR, AND Lds friends, and anywhere else you post and share you spiritual views and strengths. You are loved by many. Many will miss you. Thank you for being my friend.
Jae

Anonymous said...

Celia, you will be missed.
There were a couple of times you gave me some sound advice and I was impressed and humbled that someone would do that for me. Rock did the same for me. You and I experienced many of the same things in our respective wards, especially how our families were treated.
You are a classy person and will forever be in my heart and thoughts. Your family will be in my prayers. I will never forget you or your wisdom.
It is wonderful to know how your children are doing! :-)
JRSG in AZ

Minerals Liberia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
no class said...

@ Minerals Liberia
I'm sure you simply could not resist the urge to contend, but this post was a tribute to a beautiful person at the end of her journey, but I hope we can take a break for awhile and recognize that we are all Brothers and Sisters no matter what we believe, and resist the desire to contend for now.

Irven Hill said...

Celia,
I haven't visited this blog for long, but as soon as I saw LDSDPer, I knew exactly where the moniker came from. I was involved in the Daily Paul since 2007.

Here on this blog, when I was attacked by people over my words, you were the first to recognize the sarcasm in my comments.....instead of judging me by cherry picking certain comments, you looked at the message. It was like you knew me, without ever meeting me. Many people who have met me don't understand me as well as you seemed to. Only you and people who know me well understand where I'm coming from. Thanks for your understanding.

I was on a mission in Wisconsin from 1998-2000. Wausau was the only area that I did not get to. If you were there at that time, it is my unfortunate loss that I didn't get to meet you and your family. Perhaps another time and place. God bless you and may He be with you and your family during this difficult time.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

No Class,
While the the comment of Minerals Liberia above may be incongruous at this place and time, I would hardly call it contentious. Most likely the commenter intended it as part of a discussion following a different blog post, but it inadvertently dropped here on the front page of the blog. That happens sometimes.

Nevertheless, far from being contentious, that information clears up some problems often thrown at us by Book of Mormon critics, and it would not surprise me (though I have not done a search) to learn the comment was intended to follow a conversation our Celia had been participating in elsewhere.

If there is a bigger problem in that comment (aside from it popping up here so out of place at this time), it's that the commenter neglected to mention he was quoting verbatim from Professor John A. Tvedtnes writing for the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship at Brigham Young University who was answering to charges of racism in the Book of Mormon.

http://maxwellinstitute.byu.edu/publications/review/15/2/S00010-The_Charge_of_Racism_in_the_Book_of_Mormon.html

Minerals Liberia said...

Mistaken Post....my apologies

Yes, this is from Professor John A. Tvedtnes

Rob in Australia said...

I can't believe what I am reading about Celia. I have read almost every one of your comments Celia, over the past couple of years I think. I told you once on a comment in Rock's blog how much my wife, kids and I would have loved to have met you. As I'm sitting here crying like a grown isn't supposed to, all I want to say is that there is NO ONE on any lds blog that has your sincerity and you are a one of a kind and will be missed immensely. God bless you and your family. As homeschoolers, I am impressed with how you have raised your family especially being a professional musician myself.
Lots and lots of love. Please tell Jesus to come vist us hopeless believers.
From the four of us here in Australia

Kolus said...

Sad to hear about Celia. I'm new to the blog by about 2 months and quite frankly enjoy reading the posts much more than the comments. But it is interesting to hear about the scratch ticket. My brother had a similar experience, but his prompting was for a bag of money on the side of the road. Such blessings!

Miguel Aveiro said...

I'm sorry to hear about Celia. May she live the rest of her days in peace and in the love and comfort of her home and family.

About that story of being inspired to get a lottery ticket I don't see any problem with this even though I don't gamble either. The Lord works in mysterious ways and they didn't gamble in my mind, as the Lord told him where to go to find the lottery ticket. It's like how Jesus told this one man where to go to find a coin to pay his taxes and that was inside a fish's mouth.

When I was at the MTC, I watched a talk given by Elder Bednar in which he was talking about inspiration from the Spirit and how sometimes you don't know you're being guided by the Spirit. While he was on his mission in Germany, serving in the mission office, he was taking a church leader (who became an apostle, if he wasn't one yet) to the train station and he gave him something like the equivalent of $10. Later, while that leader was on the train with his wife, a police officer asked to see their identification. He had it but his wife didn't and the officer was going to kick her off the train at their next stop, which was way before their destination. So he gave him the money that Elder Bednar gave to the officer and he let her stay on the train. Elder Bednar in his talk explained that that was not bribery but "righteous exchange". He explained that years later, the two were serving as apostles and while in the temple, he shared that story. Gordon B Hinckley asked him if the other apostle ever paid him back. I wish Elder Bednar would share this story with the church at General Conference!

Miguel A

Aaron Bishop said...

To Celia, A woman who is loved for her intellect, her honesty, her kindness and her goodness, even by those of us who have never met her. To she who has published peace, know that a community of Christ unites their prayers on your behalf. May God bless you and your family as you pass through the veil.

Your brother,
Aaron

Mark Evans said...

Celia,

I wish that I had seen this blog post before today. I hope it is not too late for you to receive this message.

I am usually one who just reads the blog and comments here, but rarely responds. This is certainly not due to a lack of appreciation for what is being said. It is probably more just a simple combination of fear (fear that I will fail to effectively transcribe into words my overwhelming thoughts and feelings), and simple laziness.

But I feel compelled to depart from the norm here for a moment, in order to send you and your loved ones this simple message. I want to take a moment to tell you that I have greatly enjoyed reading your comments on this blog. You have always impressed me as one who has innate wisdom and love in their core. I believe that you, my dear, are one of the "good" ones.

As much as it can be extremely difficult to experience the temporary separation of having a loved one move on, I have always felt that it is the rest of us, who are left behind, who are the ones to be truly mourned. Your race, with all it's stumbles, bumps, and bruised knees, is now ending. In many ways, I do envy you for that. And I wish you a magnificent and beautiful journey. And my prayers are primarily for those you love who are to continue their sojourn on this crazy sphere, with all it's challenges.

You will be missed, and your wonderful comments here will be missed. GOD BLESS YOU on your amazing journey!

Mark

Olga said...

Sweet Celia, my heart is breaking as I write this. Thank you for your wisdom and uplifting comments here and at LDFR over the years. Your family will be in my prayers that they will feel the Savior's comforting arms around them. Love you. Olga

Anonymous said...

Does anyone have an update on Celia?
Homeschool Mom

Anonymous said...

Celia,

I don't come here anymore, but I'm glad I did. You were always so kind in all of your posts. I may not have agreed with everything you said, but I have always loved and respected the kindness that you showed while expressing yourself. You're a wonderful person and will be missed. Be well in all of your travels.

-hunter

Jeff said...

My PayPal is not accepting .net domain email addresses.

Is there another way?

Abe said...

@Jeff
Re-read the original post.

Jeff said...

I'll rephrase - Is there another Paypal way as I can't send a cheque as I'm overseas

MajJohnButtrick said...

Hi All,
I gave Rock a quick update via e-mail yesterday and a picture of Celia that I expect he will post, but wanted to give everyone here an even newer update. Celia is still with us, but is getting progressively weaker. She has not been eating any solid food for over a week. She's just been drinking water and juice. It is easy for her to fall asleep - even mid-conversation. Some of this is her weakened condition, and I'm sure some of it is from the pain medication. Yesterday it was decided by Celia and her husband Craig that she would go to a hospice house soon. My wife has been with her for 2.5 weeks and needs to return at the end of this week. Celia is currently getting lots of care. However, because of her weakened condition, it has become very difficult to lift her, etc. and attend to her needs. This is especially true at night, and during the approximately 3 hours/day when only one daughter will be there after my wife leaves. She will still have family with her constantly, but there will be others who can assist. Craig and Celia are so very grateful for the outpouring of love and support, both spiritual and temporal that you have been providing. Bless you all.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Jeff,
I don't know why Paypal won't accept a .net email address, but if you care to trust me you can send your donation to my email address and I will forward it on from here.

RockWaterman@gmail.com

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James said...

Dear Celia,

I first read Rocks good bye post. I tried to respond, but could not, somewhat in shock I guess. It's odd how much a written correspondence of words can effect me, especially when I've never met you. But they have.

I want to thank you for living in this world as long as you have. For touching me and others with your words as you have done, leaving us changed forever.

Call it country boy stubbornness, but I won't say goodbye to you.

When on the Reservation I learned the Navajo never say goodbye because of the finality of the idea. I will say what they say.

"See you later".
Because I will see you later.

Via Con Dios

Anonymous said...

Celia,

Thank you for always being there and for being my friend during the past 14 years. You have been my board mom, though you would say that you were my sister.

Thank you for loving me and my family. Thank you for sharing your family with me.

You have taught me so much. I have loved your kindness and your insight.

I am a kinder and more loving person because of you.

I will always treasure your last Christmas letter.

I love you.

God speed,

Pamela (ldfr)

EKB said...

Thank you Celia for sharing your generous soul with us! You are so kind and wise. Best wishes and love.

Anonymous said...

Thank you,Rock and Major, for the picture! What a beautiful lady!(inside and out). It makes you realize that behind each of the commenters on this blog is a real person with a story of their own that contributes to their point of view. Our prayers are still going out to Celia and her family.
Homeschool Mom

lee woo said...

Our wisdom comes from our experience, and our experience comes from our foolishness. See the link below for more info.

#foolishness
www.matreyastudios.com

Jeff said...

Thanks Rock, but the .net account is working now for some reason.

MajJohnButtrick said...

@All,
We want you to know that Celia passed away this morning after her battle with cancer. The following is from my wife (Celia’s sister):
We want to thank each of you for the love and support you have given the Scheinost family, the wonderful words of encouragement that you have provided, and not least of all, the financial support to help them in this difficult time. Celia was able to have your messages read to her over the last several days, until a couple of days ago when she was not coherent. We can’t express the love we have felt from all of you, and how important these words were to her. You are all truly disciples of Christ. Her oldest daughter was with her when she passed, and the last thing she heard was her daughter reading from the Book of Mormon – Mosiah chapter 2 (one of her favorite chapters). The last thing read to her was the last verse of that chapter (verse 41): “And moreover, I would desire that ye should consider on the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandments of God. For behold, they are blessed in all things, both temporal and spiritual; and if they hold out faithful to the end they are received into heaven, that thereby they may dwell with God in a state of never-ending happiness. O remember, remember that these things are true; for the Lord God hath spoken it.”
How appropriate.
The nurses at the Hospice house have said that studies have shown that the ear continues to hear things after death, for sometimes up to 30 minutes. After Celia’s heart stopped, her daughter felt impressed to break out her smaller Celtic harp, and played the song “Into the West” from The Lord of the Rings movies. If you are unfamiliar with this song, here it is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JgcoBKWTW14 This is the same song performed by Celia’s daughter for her cousin, our own daughter, at her funeral. Though this is difficult, we cannot imagine a more peaceful passing.
Lay down
Your sweet and weary head
Night is falling
You’ve come to journey's end
Sleep now
And dream of the ones who came before
They are calling
From across the distant shore

Why do you weep?
What are these tears upon your face?
Soon you will see
All of your fears will pass away
Safe in my arms
You're only sleeping

[Chorus]
What can you see
On the horizon?
Why do the white gulls call?
Across the sea
A pale moon rises
The ships have come to carry you home

And all will turn
To silver glass
A light on the water
All souls pass

Hope fades
Into the world of night
Through shadows falling
Out of memory and time
Don't say: «We have come now to the end»
White shores are calling
You and I will meet again

And you'll be here in my arms
Just sleeping

[Chorus]

And all will turn
To silver glass
A light on the water
Grey ships pass
Into the West

Love to you all, --Linda

Dale B said...

My first thought after I got the tears under control was "Behold the Condescension of God!" He truly works in mysterious ways. This is the first I've heard of the parable of the Scratcher, but thanks for sharing.

I have no words to express my wishes for you and your family that you will be comforted in your grief, but please accept my sincere condolences.

Leslie Lim said...

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