Formspring Question: "what do you do when you see missionaries coming?"
This is a good question, and quite frankly, I'm not sure the best way to answer this. The reason being is that I live in a region of the country that doesn't have any missionaries, so I don't get to see them coming in the first place. The last time I had missionaries in my home was in 2006, when I was still trying to be a good Mormon. But they weren't even working in the boundaries of their own mission.
I live on the edge of the Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Mission. Physically, that's only five miles from the border of the Virginia, Richmond Mission. The missionaries that visited me were from the Virginia mission and had been working this area by special permission from the Philly mission. Not sure why, it was just one of those things. But when that stint was over, they never returned to my little town. Sure, the Philly mission then put some Elders in my ward which was 40 miles away in another city, but they never ventured outside of that other city.
Incidentally, it was interesting to see all of the "letter of the law" church members throw up their arms in disgust that these missionaries were not following mission rules because they left the boundaries of their mission. Whatever, some Mormons seem to think they know better than the missionaries or even the mission president for that matter. There is sort of mistrust they have with them. I know I felt it when I was a missionary in New Zealand, especially amongst the American Mormons who were visiting or living in the country.
But, I digress.
So to answer the question, at this point, I can only speculate while looking back this last summer when I "stumbled" across a pair of Elders while visiting the big city. In that case, the only thing I did was take their picture. But I consider that to be a situation where I was the one who the missionaries saw coming. They were already there and I walked into the area. That's not going to give me any reason to engage them at all.
The thing with all of this is that I really have nothing to say to them. I honestly don't think there is any sort of conversation I could have that would be meaningful to them or me. I've let the idea of religion go and the whole concept of god, priesthood, Jesus and church and stuff really has no meaning to me. In fact, the way I look at the world differs so greatly that I find I end up talking past people regarding the way I view and experience spirituality.
And besides that, missionaries only have a single duty and that is to find people to teach. People who want to learn about the church. I don't fall into that category. I could care less and I'm even less interested spending time on a conversation that would bore the ever living crap out of me. But I'm not going to say that I would outright avoid them either. After all, they are just a bunch of cute young men doing what they think is right. You can't blame them for that, can you?
Anyway, I've rambled on long enough. I really should try to answer this person's question in a more meaningful way as in, what I would do, or how would I interact with them...if I absolutely had to. In that case, I'm going to need to ponder on the possible scenarios if they came knocking at my door.
They are as follows:
- What I could do.
- What I'll probably end up doing.
- What I really wish would happen.
2. What I'll probably end up doing is being very polite, not really say anything other than to tell them that I'm a Gay, Ex-Mormon, Atheist, Liberal, and let them continue so I don't waste their or my time. But if they persist, and some do, I'll resort to flirting. In either case, I'll be trying to take their picture, which might require flirting anyway, or at least a little flattery, which is almost the same thing. I guess scenarios 1 and 2 don't seem to be all that much different in the end except for the part about them finding out I'm a Liberal.
3. What I really wish would happen is that they would come knocking while I have half a dozen boyfriends over for a heavy, gay, BDSM fetish, play party. And without batting an eye, I would nonchalantly invite them in as if they were expected. How would I know if they weren't the friends of a friend, probably the naked one over in the corner, bound to a St. Andrews Cross and being flogged? Who knows? He did say he had two friends coming over, right? And if they did want to talk about spiritual experiences, perhaps I could demonstrate how a bondage table, sleepsack and carefully placed electrical probes could be used to induce them.
Yeah, I think I just lost a few followers to my blog right there.
Anyway, the looks on their faces would be...priceless.
And, there would most definitely be a camera ready to take their picture.