If you take a religious text from your hotel room is it stealing? ⁠

I was faced with this dilemma in February 2002. It was before the “Please accept with our compliments” was added. (Maybe Mr. Marriott has heard my story and added those words just for me.) ⁠

You Should Check Out This New Church

I had a friend that had moved to Utah after college. He mentioned in passing that he was attending a new church and, “You should check it out. You might think it is cool.” ⁠

Half out of curiosity and half out of “what are you getting yourself into!?!” I tried to learn what I could about this Utah-based faith. Apparently, they had a book that added a bit more to the Bible. I thought it may be similar to the Apocrypha. I went to the bookstore (this was pre-Amazon) to get a copy but couldn’t. ⁠

A Perfectly Timed “Coincidence”

A few days later, I was staying in a hotel during a business trip. I thought maybe it would have a copy. After all, they always have a bible, right? Sure enough, I found one. (It wasn’t until later that I learned they are only found in @marriotthotels .)⁠

I hadn’t finished it by the end of my trip. I wanted to keep reading it and learning more but I didn’t want to steal anything – but especially not something religious. (I’d cheated on enough confirmation tests growing up to know the guilt wasn’t worth it.) ⁠

Mail vs Male

In the end, I left it. I figured I’d find one somehow. I went back to Chicago and filled out a “Get a FREE Book of Mormon” page on what is now www.comeuntochrist.org . I figured it would come by mail – note the spelling – but it came by a different version of the word – male. ⁠

Go to here to catch a bit more of the story and here to see just how that same Book of Mormon showed up a few years ago and gave me a faith-boost right when I needed it.