Returning Mormon missionary receives flash mob marriage proposal (+video)

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  • briesomi Conover, NC
    March 17, 2013 9:10 a.m.

    I'm with you "Free Agency" and I'm a Mormon! I'm ashamed of all of the judgmental comments. If you don't like it, feel free to scroll on by, but leave your piousness at the door, please.

  • pacnwmom Vancouver, WA
    March 16, 2013 10:36 a.m.

    Congratulations to the sweet young couple, I think many of us would be benefited by studying what the Savior said about the Pharisees. For example: Luke 11:38 And when the Pharisee saw it, he marvelled that he had not first washed before dinner.
    39 And the Lord said unto him, Now do ye Pharisees make clean the outside of the cup and the platter; but your inward part is full of cravening and dwickedness.
    40 Ye fools, did not he that made that which is without make that which is within also?
    41 But rather give alms of such things as ye have; and, behold, all things are dclean unto you.
    42 But woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass over judgment and the love of God: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.
    43 Woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye love the uppermost seats in the synagogues, and greetings in the markets.
    44 Woe unto you, ascribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are as graves which appear not, and the men that walk over them are not aware of them.

  • hamaca Baton Rouge, LA
    March 16, 2013 7:46 a.m.

    What's the joke about the pile of rocks somewhere in response to "He that is without sin, let him cast the first stone"?

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    March 16, 2013 7:44 a.m.

    Why do people use negative epithats to describe judgmenatle people isn't that hypocrisy in the same phrase. Stake President releases missionary not mission president. MP may release people dishonorably for disciplinary reasons.

    There was a story that Vaughn J Featherstone said allright to have girlfriend he never gave that talk though. Urban legend. If proposed before released wonder how focused they were. I would think proposals are private and you are still missionary tell Stake President releases you.

  • 1voice Orem, UT
    March 16, 2013 1:22 a.m.

    I have it on very good authority that this elder was one of the most mature and faithful missionaries in his mission, a great example for everyone who served around him. A convert, he chose to serve at an older age because of his love for the Lord and for his fellowman. He is personable, warm, cheerful --- just the nicest gentleman. He is also concerned about the age at which he is hitting the job market and the rest of his life. He is, indeed, anxious to get started! They were engaged to be married when he decided that he should first serve a mission. His fiance also chose to serve a mission and completed hers a few months ago. Their plans have been set for quite some time. This was not a complete shock to him. Their story may not follow the stereotypical line for LDS young people, but there is certainly nothing to condemn here. Apologies would be in order!!

  • Philippine Bonita Sammamish, WA
    March 15, 2013 7:12 p.m.

    SO inappropriate on SO many levels. Flash mob greeting a returning missionary...INAPPROPRIATE. Marriage proposal after 2 years apart...none of my business, but in general...INAPPROPRIATE. Displaying all this in a public forum...INAPPROPRIATE. Deseret News, for running this display of immaturity and lack of sanctity for missionary service and the choice of a life partner as a "news" story...INAPPROPRIATE.. LDS Living for broadcasting this out to the whole I have to say it again? Normally I LOVE what LDS Living offers me in my email inbox, but today you really disappointed me. But hey.... No one can accuse anyone of a failure to launch, right?

  • Pbailey Magna, UT
    March 15, 2013 4:56 p.m.

    THANK YOU T.KORDS!!!! People really need to get a life! Only T.Kords knows either one of these two wonderful, loving, caring people!! They both went on missions and have devoted their lives to the church. What on earth makes you think that they would do anything to demoralize their devotion or disgrace the church. And as for his parents...Austins mother and grandmother where there at the airport when Brittany walked off the plane at midnight and love her like a daughter already. They are very much in love with each other and the church. I cannot wait to see them be married and start their lives together as I am Brittany's Aunt and have seen first hand the love they have for each other before and after BOTH their missions. People need to celebrate the love of two people instead of critizing things they know nothing about!!!

  • @Charles not from utah, 00
    March 15, 2013 3:52 p.m.

    @Too: i guess the censors at the Dnews don't want the truth out about your Missionary Handbook claim as I posted last night that what you claim as being in the handbook is nowhere to be found. Look it up yourself at lds dot org.

    @Johnny: I hope you don't break your arm patting yourself on your back. You are our hero. You never make a mistake, you keep every single commandment there is yet you lack humility.

    Mission Presidents have and probably still do release missionaries from their missions on a case by case basis. I had some in my mission who were released in the field. Honestly, I have such a hard time stomaching comments such as yours --- claiming to know what God would or wouldn't do. Pretty arrogant wouldn't you say?

    I'm always curious as to why people on these threads are so negative and judgmental. There is nothing to what these 2 did and not one of you can claim otherwise. Go out and take a walk today in the sun and give service instead of denigrating 2 faithful missionaries.

  • SLMG Murtoa Australia, Victoria
    March 15, 2013 3:26 p.m.

    If it suits them then that is all that counts.

  • T.Kords South Jordan, UT
    March 15, 2013 1:27 p.m.

    I have to say, I served in the same mission as Elder Spitler, worked with him on a number of occasions, and he was an absolute stud of an elder. Super hard working, very obedient even when surrounded by others who weren't nearly as much so. He did real good work.
    On another note, I just have to say that the "no hugging" thing is a rule that is entirely made up by missionaries and members alike. Search the White Handbook, it's nowhere in there. It says to not engage in inappropriate conduct with members of the opposite gender. Kinda leaves it up to the interpretation of the missionary and the mission president. So since he was home, probably not that big of a deal.

  • UtahninAlberta ,
    March 15, 2013 1:23 p.m.

    @Johnny Triumph. I am glad you are so diligent and thanks for the advice on how to serve my congregation. You have to admit that the comments on here are over the top. To publicly call out this young man for this is ludicrous. Put your head down and serve in your callings and let his leaders deal with the situation how they deem fit.

  • imgramma42 DOWNEY, CA
    March 15, 2013 12:42 p.m.

    In the beginning of the article it was said that he was just released from his mission.
    Does that mean his Mission President could have released him?

  • Johnny Triumph American Fork, UT
    March 15, 2013 11:39 a.m.

    @UtahninAlberta - the stereotype you bring up is very true, but not in my case. 20+ hours spent on my calling each week and 100% HT.

    As for bigger fish to fry, everyone is different. There is no way you can callously disregard this situation and deem it innocent while still caring for these individuals and working to help them improve. Each person in your congregation deserves your attention, even if it's for issues that you deem irrelevant. I seriously doubt the Savior would disregard someone like that, you shouldn't either.

  • UtahninAlberta ,
    March 15, 2013 10:28 a.m.

    Man you people need to get a life. This is why I am glad we moved out of Utah. As a leader, there are far bigger fish to fry than to deal with this. I would bet dollars to donuts that the people casting stones on here are "too busy to serve" in their callings and rarely do their HT/VT. They can site the gospel chapter and verse but the rubber don't meet the road.

  • Johnny Triumph American Fork, UT
    March 15, 2013 10:17 a.m.

    @KellieBuckner, @rlsintx

    Rationalizing your way out of rules is just the wrong thing to do. There is an order to things and if the order isn't followed then problems arise. He should have waited until after his mission release to propose and she should have waited also, knowing what the rules are. Your rationale would then also make premarital sex OK as long as the couple was really serious and commited to each other. If we're hoping to live a righteous life then we cannot rationalize the rules.

    @3GrandKeys - give her a hug, don't get engaged. And your sarcastic view of Godly traits is terrible.

  • Johnny Triumph American Fork, UT
    March 15, 2013 10:13 a.m.


    Missionaries are not released from service while still in the mission field. They're set apart as missionaries by their local Stake President before leaving for the MTC and their local Stake President releases them from that service. The Mission President recommends an honorable release and sends a letter in the mail to the Stake President stating such, the Stake President then interviews the returning missionary and releases him/her based on the letter from the Mission President. Until the missionary is released he/she must continue to adhere to the mission rules.

  • 3GrandKeys Walnut Creek, CA
    March 15, 2013 9:56 a.m.

    Anyone who took the time to criticize this kid for breaking mission rules during the awkward missionary limbo between the airport and the stake president interview...bravo. Well done. No really, we're impressed with your diligence at pointing out the letter of the white handbook law. He definitely should have stiff armed his future bride and wagged a finger. I'm sad for them because he's likely now brought a sore cursing upon their future generations with such a brazen disregard for the laws of God.

  • rlsintx Plano, TX
    March 15, 2013 9:41 a.m.

    He's home and the release was probably a few minutes later. My son landed at the DFW airport and was released in about an hour after a drive to Frisco.
    Really, do you think God cares about some strict mission release rule as long as the hearts are right and intent of their actions are pure ? Maybe Leave the judging to those in authority perhaps ? I have 2 friends who did the same thing sans flash-mob in 1978 and they're still married, happy to this day. (well, I haven't talked to her on facebook in about a month to be honest)

  • Kellie Buckner University Heights, Ohio
    March 15, 2013 8:16 a.m.

    My mission president and my husband's mission president in our final interviews before going home both stressed the importance of not putting off marriage when we got home. I seriously doubt any mission president or stake president would really have a problem with what happened. It was sweet. So what if it was a little cheesy? It was awesome. The no hugging/kissing rule is there to keep missionaries on task and from getting distracted. This guy was home and I bet anything he got a talk just like my husband and I did when we left our missions--"Go home and get married!" There's a difference between the letter of the law and the spirit of the law.

  • Free Agency Salt Lake City, UT
    March 15, 2013 12:00 a.m.

    Wow, after reading all the negative comments here, I thought, "Where's the fun and spontaneity in Mormon culture?" (I saw the video in full on an Oklahoma website since the DN video wasn't working.)

    I felt that this couple had thought things over very seriously about getting married. And this was a great way to make it "official."

    Gosh, they gave a couple of years of service each to the Mormon church. They're obviously committed Mormons. Can't they be trusted to make these decisions at the right time for them?

    Does the guy have to be "released" before he can hug his girl?

    Life doesn't always come with a my-way-or-the-highway manual. That's why it's called "life."

    I think I'll show these negative comments to the next missionaries who come to my door, when I give them my "No thanks." I'd rather have a joyful life (just as Mormons say we're here to have).

  • Igualmente Mesa, AZ
    March 14, 2013 11:37 p.m.

    Just saw it on CNN website, so it's going viral just like the BYU campus kiss me I'm Irish video shown on the NBC Today Show this morning.

  • TOO Sanpete, UT
    March 14, 2013 9:04 p.m.


    It's called the Missionary Handbook, AKA "White Bible". It lists the rules of missionaries, and every single one of those is in there.
    How do I know he wasn't released? I'm guessing by the plaque on his suit. Full time missionaries are told to take the plaque off when they're released.
    It's not him having a girlfriend that's bad. I had lots of comps with girlfriends, but guess what, they didn't kiss anyone either. However, our area President did send home missionaries for kissing girls, because it's a severe rule breaking.
    I can't show you the manual through a computer, but every missionary in the world has it, and is told to carry it. It fits in the shirt pocket.

  • @Charles the greater outdoors, UT
    March 14, 2013 8:41 p.m.


    Again, where is this manual that has the rules that YOU put forward as fact? I hugged every person that I baptized while in the font, male and female. I must have been a horrible missionary in your narrow view.

    I didn't kiss any girls on my mission but I got a new companion who had a girlfriend. Guess what, he wasn't sent home. I did get kissed by a few grandma's while on my mission. Should I call Pres Monson and "repent"?

    Again, how do you know he wasn't released from his mission BEFORE he got home? Hmmmmm

    So please, take your judgmental attitude and check it at the door. The self-righteousness of Mormons, particularly Utah Mormons is nauseating.

    But as I asked before, show me that manual you speak of!

  • TOO Sanpete, UT
    March 14, 2013 7:45 p.m.


    1. Hugged a girl not related to him.
    2. KISSED a girl.
    3. Proposed while a missionary
    4. Allowed someone to propose to him, and accepted.

    Those are major rules that I named one by one.

  • dotGone Puyallup, WA
    March 14, 2013 6:46 p.m.

    ok you guys! "Every party needs a pooper, that's why we invited you, party pooper!"!!

  • @Charles the greater outdoors, UT
    March 14, 2013 6:02 p.m.

    Great to see the judgmental nuts still out on the threads. If everyone could only be as good as each of you detractors are in your lives. Post it on YouTube for everyone to see please.

    How do you know he was released in the field Nellie? But please list all the "major missionary rules" that were broken. Name them one by one. I eagerly await your detailed response and where all these rules are written down. Ready, set, go.

  • Whoa Nellie American Fork, UT
    March 14, 2013 5:49 p.m.

    Except Charles, he was not a returned missionary. He was still a missionary and thus broke some major missionary rules with that little episode. Therefore, there is no "judging" involved here. Stick to the facts.

    March 14, 2013 5:48 p.m.

    First of all very, very weird. Secondly, I think that this was wrong to do at the airport, right after he got home, and lastly I saw a flash mob with the same song, and a guy proposing to his girlfriend about two weeks ago on facebook. I think this girl saw this and copied it. By the way the flash mob I saw two weeks ago had people, who could actually dance and was kind of cute, this one was ridiculous.

  • freedom in 2017 paradise, UT
    March 14, 2013 5:32 p.m.

    some will do anything for 15 minutes of "fame". i'll bet he was really "engaged" in the work while planning this dopey proposal.
    i heard Lagoon was contacted to have their marriage performed on a rollercoaster.

  • ExDixieIte Salt Lake City, UT
    March 14, 2013 5:31 p.m.

    OK, let me do some math here. They met in April 2010, and if he's coming home from a two-year mission in March 2013 math would indicate that he left in March of 2011. So they knew each other for a total of less than a year before he left. While he was gone they had contact of the lovey-dovey type but had no interactions with each other on a day-to-day basis. Now they are making the ultimate commitment to each other less than a month after he come back.

    Why do I see a very high potential for this ending badly?

  • TOO Sanpete, UT
    March 14, 2013 5:09 p.m.

    Nice to know where the priorities are. Kissing your girlfriend when you're still wearing the plaque is a big deal, buddy. I would be quite upset if I was his local leader and one of the GAs.

    They waited 2 years. They couldn't wait 2 more hours to get him released so he wasn't a missionary anymore? Says a lot to me.

    I try not to pass judgment, but missionaries are the group I think about the most and rule obeying, and this kid busted a HUGE one.

  • @Charles the greater outdoors, UT
    March 14, 2013 4:54 p.m.

    Isn't it so nice that these 2 returned missionaries didn't have to get "permission" from Johnny Triumph, Lindon man or SocalReader? They didn't do this for you, they did it for themselves.

    If this is how they want to celebrate the end of their missionary service -- good for them! If they want to propose -- good for them!

    As for the overzealous concern about what the stake president might feel about it, no need to worry since you aren't his stake president. And in my humble opinion, I'd bet he didn't give a rip --- so you do you with all your judging?

    I'm always amazed at how people on these threads look for the negative in every single situation. I feel sorry for you.

  • Whoa Nellie American Fork, UT
    March 14, 2013 4:50 p.m.

    Exactly Johnny. I thought Mormon missionaries were not allowed to hug and kiss someone of the opposite sex. What's up with that? Cute idea, terrible timing. Let him be released first.

  • So. Cal Reader San Diego, CA
    March 14, 2013 4:31 p.m.

    I, too, didn't see anything "cute" about this. @ Lindon Man and Johnny Triump, I echo your comments. Give the young man 1-2 weeks to "get home" and unwind just a bit. The word I thought of viewing the video was "awkward."

  • Tuffy Parker Salem, UT
    March 14, 2013 3:14 p.m.

    Flash mob? Really???

  • LindonMan Lindon, UT
    March 14, 2013 3:08 p.m.

    That's embarrassing.

  • Colorado Reader Littleton, CO
    March 14, 2013 2:42 p.m.

    Just wrong on so many levels!! If this were my son, I would have some serious issues with this girl!!!! And my son!!!

  • CWEB Orem, UT
    March 14, 2013 2:38 p.m.

    Glad after two years he felt the same...a lot happens in two years! Congrats!

  • rph Dulles, VA
    March 14, 2013 2:19 p.m.

    I hate flash mobs, and this one was terribly unattractive.