Joseph Walker
Joseph Walker began his professional writing career in 1980 as a staff writer for the Deseret News in Salt Lake City, eventually becoming the newspaper's television and live theater critic. He left professional journalism for 20 years to work in the world of public relations, and is now back at the Deseret News as the newspaper’s faith and religion reporter. Since 1990 he has written a weekly newspaper column called ValueSpeak, which has appeared in more than 200 newspapers nationally. A number of his columns have been published in five different editions of the "Chicken Soup for the Soul" series. His published books include two column collections – "How Can You Mend a Broken Spleen?" and "Look What Love Has Done!" – as well as the Ben Franklin Award-winning novella, "Christmas on Mill Street." Joseph and his wife, Anita, have five children and seven grandchildren. They reside in American Fork, Utah.

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I’ll be honest — we haven’t always had a great church choir. Which is kind of weird because we have some pretty terrific singers in the congregation. Then Barbara came along.
The main difference between the two top women of my early life was Jean’s inability to say “no” to anything. Whereas Mom could nix an idea before the words had even come together in your brain...
Has there been a friend whose thoughtfulness made your world a more peaceful place this year?
Every time I turn on the news I hear this scary word that hasn’t always been scary: Ebola.
Respect as a concept was huge at our house — perhaps not as spelled out as it is in Otis Redding’s lyric, but huge nonetheless.
It’s easy to understand why something we do roughly 20,000 times a day might be taken for granted.
OK, I admit it: I had a crush on JoAnn. So what? Every boy in the fifth grade had a crush on her. Why should I be any different?
Beck wasn't the best player on our church league softball team that summer. But then, he didn't have to be. He was the lay leader of our congregation. But somebody had to tell him about The Hat.
It wasn’t that I didn’t want to mow the lawn that late summer afternoon when I was 13. So when Dad asked me to mow the lawn a couple of days early that week, I told him I would without even thinking...
Our neighbors’ plight may not be as dramatic as those in Iraq, Israel or Gaza, but to them it is every bit as real and oppressive.