Elder Petersen's Mission Memories

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by Jeff Laver

Steve Petersen has been hoping his homosexual feelings are "just a phase." But as a nineteen-year-old embarking on a two-year Mormon mission in South America, he realizes those feelings are still there, and that he’s attracted to another missionary -- the companion he’s been assigned to be with twenty-four hours a day.

Set in 1972, less than three years after Stonewall, these missionaries have been taught by their church that homosexuality is an abomination, and those who suffer from those tendencies must repent. Worse, they're told that with God’s help, fervent prayer, and mind over matter, they can become heterosexuals. Steve's conflict is real and heart-wrenching; he’s an official representative of his church, but he's falling in love with his companion. Can he reconcile his church doctrine and the feelings in his heart? 

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