Reba and Lori Schappell are conjoined twins living in Reading, Pennsylvania. You can read about them and see pictures in this article from BBC News. A friend’s mother, who also lives in Reading, reports that one of the conjoined twins (I think Lori, although I’m not entirely sure) was recently baptized, as was the twins’ aide. But the other twin, Reba, was not. Nevertheless, since they are joined at the left sides of their heads just above the eye, Reba had to kneel in the font as a part of the baptism.
I found this fascinating and had the following questions:
- Reba must have been present when the missionary discussions were given. It is interesting that they “took” with Lori and the aide but not with Reba.
- I wonder what sort of special instructions the witnesses were given. Some can be very picky about a hair floating to the top of the water or such; I hope they didn’t have to perform the ordinance multiple times just to try to comply with some person’s pharisaical sense of complete immersion.
- I should think that would require a lot of sisterly love and patience to be willing to kneel in a font filled with water so that your sister could be baptized. (Conversely, though, when Reba performs [she is a country western singer], Lori is hidden by a sort of blanket. And Lori even has to pay her own way into the concerts, which appears to be her preference as a way of affirming their individuality.)
- My main question is how this will work in practice going forward. If Lori wants to attend a three-hour block of meetings, Reba will have to attend as well. It seems as though an astounding measure of self-sacrifice is entailed in the willingness of one sister to support the other in converting to the Gospel and living a fulfilling life. I think we could say this measure of love and self-sacrifice is indeed Christ-like, and a remarkable example to us all.