Religious and Moral Issues

Part 1:  Introduction

Does everyone have times of wondering what makes him “tick” in his own peculiar way?  I think many, many have that feeling at times.  Not knowing the innermost thots of others, I often get the feeling I am extra “strange” or “different.”

            The interesting thing about life of all kinds is:  that any bit of life is distinctly individual.  When we zero in on human life, some of us begin to realize that because we are all different, none of us can really know and understand another fully.  I wonder if we know and understand ourselves fully!

            This book is being written in an effort for Dorris Esther Willows Wells to better understand herself and her religion or philosophy.  First she will review her life as it most strictly relates to religion and moral or ethical issues.

            I think my parents had little or no strong church ties in their own youth.  I heard vague remarks of my maternal grandparents being separated in my mother’s young days.  Mother was number eight of nine children.

            Her mother (my maternal grandmother) “ran away” to California, leaving my grandfather with at least Aunt Lily, mother, and George still young children at home.  Grandfather Alvis must have felt the care of two young girls was beyond him.  They were cared for in a Catholic Convent.  I have no memory of the name or location of this Convent.

            In my own childhood I remember beautiful letters that occasionally arrived from a nun of this convent.  The slight memory I have:  the letters, they were very caring and loving.  Each one was beautifully decorated with vines and flowers most delicately done in colored ink and very fine pen.

            About 1921 mother took me by RR to visit her mother and “Daddy Straw” in San Diego.  He was an old man – very kind, but rather strict.  I was not on my best behavour.  I may write of that another time.  As part of our trip home, we stopped at Los Angeles to visit the nun of mother’s convent days.  I can’t remember her looks in the slightest.  A bigger memory involves the way I gorged on fresh bing cherries – and how I paid by throwing up (to mother’s embarrassment) on the beautiful Convent grounds!

            Our trip home gave mother a stop in Utah to visit her brother Sidney.  He was Mormon.  My memories there of being held up by an older cousin to peek thru a window at some Mormon gathering in is even more blurred than the memory of splashing and floating in Great Salt Lake.  I was given a stick or two of chewing gum.  If the salt water splashed in my eyes, I was first to wipe my salty fingers on the gum before rubbing my eye!  Otherwise I’d just add salt to the eyes.

            My paternal grandmother may have had Presbyterian connections as she was raising her family.  That seemed to “take” with my Aunt Ester (tho it might have been more because of my Great Grandmother Laura Harris.)

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