The Words of the Sanders Family

Saying "No" to Father

Bill Sanders
June, 1999

Once while in Gloucester, Mass., Father asked me to provide him with three people to go fishing with him on the New Hope.

I told Father there were only 4 of us there, and I couldn't spare them. He then asked for two, with my same response. By then, he was getting red in the face and screaming that I had to "give" him one brother to go fishing for giant blue-fin on the New Hope. I finally relented of course. For three days, the brother fished on the New Hope, and at the end of that three days Father came into the lobster plant, pointed him to me working hard in the corner, and said, "Bill needs you more here more than I do on the New Hope."

Mike McDevitt told me a couple of days later that Father was so surprised that "An American brother would 'stand up' to him like that."

For me, it was a matter of reality. I had the mission to run the plant and I was already short handed. If Father had said at the time to close the plant and go fishing, I would have gladly done so. I would take fishing to schlepping any day.

Being raised in a pragmatic manner by loving parents, I knew that my first responsibility was to continue the business, that anyone could go fishing. I've had several "reality" checks with Father. The above one being one of them. It is in these past few years where reality and words haven't been matching I have difficulty with in the higher spheres of the church and the leadership. My heart wants to give more, but logic tells me differently.

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