cover of book
edited by Stephen Carter
Signature Books, 2017
eISBN: 978-1-56085-332-9 | Paper: 978-1-56085-265-0
Library of Congress Classification BX8643.D4M68 2017
Dewey Decimal Classification 236.1

In Mormonism we are sometimes seemingly casual
about death: it’s a veil or a mission call to the spirit
world. But our actual encounters with the reality of
death inevitably change us in ways that are difficult
to articulate.
In this collection, Mormon writers wrestle with
mortality and its aftermath. A family sings a hesitant
rendition of Happy Birthday to a grief-stricken
mother who buried her toddler just a few hours earlier;
an agnostic son decides he’s Mormon enough to
arrange a funeral for his believing father.
Some essays use death as a means to understand
faith. One author imagines a world where Heavenly
Mother visits her children in the form of their
female ancestors, appearing to her descendants in
times of grief or pain.
Others address practicalities: how do you protect
your children from death while still allowing them
to experience the world; how do you get through
one more nausea-ridden day of cancer treatment?
Still others delve into death’s questions: does the
overwhelming suffering that occurs in the animal
kingdom have a function in the “plan of happiness”?
Sometimes humorous, sometimes heartbreaking,
always thought-provoking, these personal essays,
poems, and stories may never be heard at a Mormon
funeral. But they probably should be.