I’m about to finish grad school and just accepted a job which will be taking my wife and I from Boston to Minnesota. What does that mean for us… MOVING. For those of you who have not been through an independent move, it is quite the undertaking—the organizing, the boxing, loading the truck, the cross-country drive in the U-Haul, the unloading and unpacking, and without a doubt the worst part of the move –trying to carry the heavy furniture up staircases and through tight doorways.
Luckily for us, we’re Mormon. What does our faith have to do with using a complex pulley system to lift a piano into a 3rd story window? Not much, as I’ve actually never seen that happen. However, I have seen countless groups of people gather to help complete strangers and departing friends load/unload U-Hauls.
The typical process goes something like this. You tell your local church leader that you will be moving. The Sunday before your move, someone gets up during the last meeting of church and makes an announcement that says something like “The Johnson family is moving Saturday at 4:00, who can make it?” A bunch of people raise their hands, a few reminder emails are sent out during the week, and sure enough, Saturday at 4:00 fifteen or so people show up to load up the U-Haul. The great thing is, this happens on both ends of the move. All you need to do is look up the local congregation in the new city, give them a call, and a similar announcement will be made. Ask any Mormon how many moves they have participated in and I’m sure the answer will be at least “dozens.” It’s sort of like our toned down version of the Amish barn raising.
This is just one of the benefits of having a well organized and strong community in the church. However, the help isn’t just restricted to Mormons. Next time you move, try calling up one of your Mormon friends and see what happens. Not only will you probably get help with the move, you might just end up with freshly baked cookies to send you on your way. ?