I believe the Bible is true. I believe the Book of Mormon is true. I shudder at scriptural fiction about specific people that existed though. I get upset because the doctrine tends to get skewed and people get misrepresented.
That being said, I really do find scriptural fiction exciting–as long as the main character isn’t someone who’s named in the scriptures. That’s why I am begging someone to write a novel about the women of Sherrizah from the Book of Mormon.
It would be a daunting task. The author would have be brave and spiritually in tune.
These women are the women in Moroni Chapter 9–the most gruesome chapter in the entire Book of Mormon. Both the Lamanites and Nephites do the most horrific acts. Mormon recounted the incidences in the letter to his son, Moroni.
First he wrote what the Lamanites did to the people of Sherrizah:
And now I write somewhat concerning the sufferings of this people. For according to the knowledge which I have received from Amoron, behold, the Lamanites have many prisoners, which they took from the tower of Sherrizah; and there were men, women, and children. And the husbands and fathers of those women and children they have slain; and they feed the women upon the flesh of their husbands, and the children upon the flesh of their fathers; and no water, save a little, do they give unto them. (vs. 7-8)
Sadly, it didn’t stop there. The Nephites showed horrid brutality as well:
And notwithstanding this great abomination of the Lamanites, it doth not exceed that of our people in Moriantum. For behold, many of the daughters of the Lamanites have they taken prisoners; and after depriving them of that which was most dear and precious above all things, which is chastity and virtue—And after they had done this thing, they did murder them in a most cruel manner, torturing their bodies even unto death; and after they have done this, they devour their flesh like unto wild beasts, because of the hardness of their hearts; and they do it for a token of bravery. (vs. 9-10)
If someone did write a novel about Moroni 9, I pray they wouldn’t get too graphic. There has to be a way to get across what happened though. Perhaps it can be told from the survivors’ point of view.
Yes. I didn’t notice the survivors till recently.
And again, my son, there are many widows and their daughters who remain in Sherrizah; and that part of the provisions which the Lamanites did not carry away, behold, the army of Zenephi has carried away, and left them to wander whithersoever they can for food; and many old women do faint by the way and die. (vs. 16)
So the surviving women were left without provisions. The old women (many–never said all) seemed to have died quicker than the younger ones. They must have been exhausted. But all these survivors of the towers must have been tough. The old women might have been very heroic in aiding the younger ones.
As for the younger women, how did they live the rest of their lives? Were they left alone?
Like totally alone?
Remember that at the beginning of the letter, Mormon tells his son he doesn’t know the full story For according to the knowledge which I have received from Amoron (vs.7) And where did Amoron receive it? It seems like the worse things were, the quicker people heard about them. It is puzzling, however, that they did know some women eventually “escaped.” That forced cannibals had little to drink. That old women died by the wayside. Interesting details. Makes me wonder if Mormon and Amoron met some of the women. What would their conversations have been like? It’s heartbreaking that Mormon’s army couldn’t protect them or themselves.
And the army which is with me is weak; and the armies of the Lamanites are betwixt Sherrizah and me; and as many as have fled to the army of Aaron have fallen victims to their awful brutality. (vs. 17)
The women who survived were too few to be numbered. What could these women have lived for?
I think recognition of all the women in Moroni 9 is long overdue. We have to remember them somehow.
I really like the article that http://www.womeninthescriptures.com/ wrote about these women. Please read it. I like how the author includes words of hope that Mormon offered his son at the end of Moroni 9. I wish to quote verse 25.
My son, be faithful in Christ; and may not the things which I have written grieve thee, to weigh thee down unto death; but may Christ lift thee up, and may his sufferings and death, and the showing his body unto our fathers, and his mercy and long-suffering, and the hope of his glory and of eternal life, rest in your mind forever. (vs 25)
I hope the author who writes a novel based on these events includes the theme of hope.
But one day, perhaps in heaven, we’ll know the exact truth of what happened to the survivors of Sherrizah.
The Mighty Fallen tree photo by Stanley Howe
Traditional Roman Catholic depiction of the Anima Sola (“lonely soul”) praying in the fires of Purgatory. From an old holy card.