Counselor to President Tempest
Our challenges in the Caribou District were largely of a material character. The Caribou Chapel’s construction, we learned, had stretched the financial resources of the congregation which worshipped there, and it was quite literally a Godsend when the Church restructured the funding of such projects so that, as nowadays, it came entirely from central Church headquarters in Salt Lake City. Earlier generations of Latter-day Saints developed a lot of faith-promoting stories out of the sacrifices they were expected to make so that church buildings could be built, before that policy change. I wish I could express adequately the touching level of loving hospitality those good folks extended to the first General Authority to venture into their remote abode.
The four of us, Elder Reeve and the Presidency, couldn’t leave for the long drive (415 miles, according to my Google) to Caribou until around eight Friday evening, because Rich had to see a group of missionaries off at the end of their missions, in the new Mission Home in Belmont. He drove, and by one in the morning, when we arrived in Bangor, he was getting weary enough to suggest that we stop at the White Horse Motel** and grab a few hours of slumber. We left a wake-up call for 6AM, figuring we could make our 10AM meeting comfortably.

But the call didn’t come, and the first of our eyes opened at 7:30. In the parking lot, we were a pretty unhappy group. President Tempest said, “Well, Elder Reeve, it wouldn’t be consistent with the dignity of my calling to drive as fast as I’d have to, to get us there on time. I guess I’ll have to phone ahead and ask them to be patient.” The Area President allowed as how it wouldn’t be suitable to the dignity of his calling, either, were he to take over. A brief silence ensued, and then Rich said, “Andy, would you take the wheel?” So Dave, who knew intimately the territory and the placement of its speed traps, rode shotgun. And I demonstrated that my calling comported no dignity whatever. A few villages we roared through may not have survived our passage. And we arrived with six minutes to spare.
**Through the rest of his life, Dave and I missed no opportunity to kid each other that we’d shared, however briefly and chastely, the honeymoon suite in the White Horse, complete with the mirror above its emperor-size bed. Vacancies were scarce, it seems.
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