“The Only Bald Deacon,” Friend, June 2020
Carlos rubbed his hand along his head, feeling his bare scalp. He sighed.
His hair had been falling out for a while now. It was a side effect of the cancer treatments he was having. Carlos had decided to shave the rest of it off because he didn’t like how patchy his hair looked. He used to have shiny dark hair. Now all he had was a shiny scalp.
“Carlos? Are you ready for church? It’s time to go,” Mom called.
“Coming,” Carlos called back. He straightened his favorite tie and grabbed his scriptures. Then he ran out to the car.
This would be his first Sunday passing the sacrament without any hair. He was going to be the only bald deacon. Was everyone going to stare at him?
Carlos didn’t say anything for the whole drive to church. He listened to his siblings and parents talk. His stomach was doing flips, and his hands were sweaty. The closer they got to church, the jumpier his stomach got.
The car pulled into the church parking lot. Everyone unbuckled their seatbelts. Everyone except Carlos. Part of him wanted to just sit in the car and never come out.
Mom noticed he wasn’t moving. “What’s wrong, Carlos?”
“I’m nervous about passing the sacrament. I don’t want everyone to stare at me,” Carlos said.
Mom turned around to look at Carlos. “Would you like to say a prayer before we go in?”
“Yeah,” Carlos said. Everyone folded their arms and closed their eyes while Carlos said a prayer. He thanked Heavenly Father that he was able to pass the sacrament. Then he asked for help to not worry about other people staring at him. When he opened his eyes, he felt peaceful and ready.
“That was a beautiful prayer. I know Heavenly Father will help you,” Mom said.
Carlos smiled. He remembered the end of the sacrament prayer, “that they may always have his Spirit to be with them” (Doctrine and Covenants 20:77). Helping others have the Holy Ghost with them was one of Carlos’s favorite parts of passing the sacrament. Now he felt warm and confident. He was ready.
Carlos walked into the chapel. He looked for his friends in the deacons quorum in the pews in front of the sacrament table. He couldn’t see them. Instead, he saw seven bald heads. Where were all of his friends from deacons quorum?
He walked up to the pews and realized that those seven bald heads belonged to his friends!
The deacons quorum president, Samuel, was smiling at Carlos. “We had the idea to shave our heads. We didn’t want you to feel alone.”
Carlos hardly knew what to say. He thanked his friends and prayed silently to Heavenly Father. He thanked Him for blessing him with such good friends.
Carlos stood tall as he passed the sacrament. He wasn’t alone at all! He had good friends, and he had the Holy Ghost with him.
When someone in my ward got really hurt, I prayed every day for him to get better.
Tabitha F., age 11, Utah, USA