No, no --- don't get your hopes up. The Parker-Lopez-Stone Broadway musical is not coming to Johnson Auditorium (It's already been to Des Moines). It's just that for the first time so far as I know in Lucas County history we have a pair of resident Mormon missionaries. The guys walked by as I was gazing out the window during a meeting yesterday, which brought all of this to mind.
This YouTube "Party Bus Edition" of the production's opening number, "Hello," has gone kind of viral lately. It was produced by Samuel Leicht and features Leicht, Tim Koll, Leland Raymond, Damian Wille and Logan Lang.
This doesn't mean we've not had Mormon missionaries before, only that they've usually been housed elsewhere in the Osceola Ward of the Des Moines Stake.
I'm fond of Mormon missionaries for a couple of reasons. For one, Mason City's four-man contingent lived next-door to me for a few years --- great guys, friendly, best of all quiet. The only downside was the confusion that results because missionaires move in and out regularly as their assignments change and they tend to look alike --- identical working attire and similar haircuts.
So just when you'd learn to associate an elder's name with a face, thereby attaining the ability to be polite and say, "Good morning, Elder ( )," he'd be gone. This is why the nametags come in handy.
Beyond that, the LDS church seems to be the last of the major expression of American Christianity still interested in saving souls. At the conservative end of the more traditional church, wagons are circled and the emphasis has shifted to keeping sinners out and taking potshots at perceived threats to the power base. More liberal congregations just sit there on Sunday mornings with the doors open hoping someone will wander in --- then either overdo the welcome because visitors are so rare or stare at them suspiciously (just in case they might be planning a future visit to swipe the good silver).
So I hope everyone will be friendly and welcome these guys to Lucas County. Just keep in mind, if you're interested in the future of one of our local churches, that they're doing what you should be doing. And it is polite, by the way, to accept a copy of the Book of Mormon when offered. They have plenty and it makes them feel good.
Marriage equality legislation cleared the Delaware Legislature yesterday and was signed into law almost immediately by Governor Jack Markell. Number 11.
Attention turns today to Minnesota, where marriage equality legislation stands a good chance of passage in the House, where the DFL holds a 74-member majority. Legislators say there are enough votes in Senate to win approval there, too. Number 12?
Wow. Remember that "one-man-one-woman" constitutional amendment defeated by Minnesota voters last year? Not a sign of Republican support, of course.
Then down there in South Carolina yesterday, Republicans elected adulterous former Gov. Mark Sanford to a congressional seat.