I'll admit that my patriarchal blessing did get a few things right. The name, for one thing. The name was dead on. To his credit, the patriarch never slipped and called me Bill, or Clarissa, or anything like that. But over the years since I received this blessing, I've been absolutely stunned at how far off most of his predictions for me turned out to be.
A quick overview of the errors:
More important, where was the nifty stuff? Where was the stunning revelation that I helped kick/push/drag Lucifer out of heaven? Why couldn't I have been promised a hundred wives in the Celestial Kingdom? Why couldn't he have made me an elite soldier in the final siege against Jerusalem? How about letting me assassinate the Antichrist? Somebody has to do it.
I didn't even get an interesting lineage. Ephraim? Bleeech! Everyone gets Ephraim!
In short, I got a cookie-cutter, cut-and-paste string of paragraphs so well-worn that ninety percent of the blessing was recycled from the one my older brother got. With only a few exceptions (those mentioning my current military service) the words could have described LDS expectations for every young man. When, near the end, the patriarch solemnly proclaimed that I was "one of Heavenly Father's special sons," I subconsciously added, "Just like everyone else."
Here it is, in all its insipid glory. Enjoy:
6 September 1995
Brother Bryce Corey Anderson, by the authority of the Holy Melchizedek Priesthood, I lay my hands upon your head and give you a Patriarchal blessing which will be as the Spirit shall direct.
Bryce, you are of a choice lineage, even that of Joseph, who was sold into Egypt, through his son Ephraim. This choice lineage entitles you to all blessings of the new and everlasting covenant if you are true and faithful in keeping the laws and ordinances of the gospel.
You are privileged to have been born in a family who have taught you the gospel and correct principles. Continue to follow their counsel and admonitions and they will bless you as you put these principles into practice. You will be able to teach the things which your parents have taught you to others.
You have been born through a long line of noble ancestry and goodly parents. Always honor your heritage and do that which is expected of you. Never let peer pressure lead you into paths which would be wrong in the sight of the Lord.
Bryce, you were one of the choice, faithful, loyal sons of your Heavenly Father in your pre-earth life. So your spirit was reserved to come to earth at this time when the fullness of the gospel was upon the earth and in the dispensation of the fullness of time to perform a special mission which you were foreordained to do. You have been given gifts and talents in order for you to accomplish this mission. So continue to develope [sic] them and they will be a great blessing to you, to your family, and your associates.
You have been blessed to be a member of the only true and living church upon the earth and to have received the Aaronic priesthood. You have been faithful in this calling. As you continue to be worthy you will be blessed to receive the Melchizedek priesthood. As you magnify your calling in this priesthood you will eventually become a joint heir with Jesus Christ and receive all that the Father hath.
As you honor your priesthood you will be called to many important and responsible positions in the Church. As you teach by the Spirit and follow the counsel of those who have a right to guide and direct you, you will be a great influence for good and be able to set a proper example to those around you. You will enjoy your work and callings in the Church.
You have prepared and are preparing to be a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. You will be blessed, as you go into the mission field, to be well prepared and be able to preach the gospel with power and authority to those you labor among. Your tongue will be loosed and you will be able to bring some of your contacts, with the help of the Lord, into the Church. This will bring much joy and happiness to you. You will be guided and directed on this mission and again be able to return to your family and loved ones in peace and in safety.
In due time of the Lord you will have a desire to seek for a choice companion. Such a one will be raised up for you. Seek for the guidance of the Lord in making this important decision of who you should marry. You and your chosen companion will go to the House of the Lord and there be sealed for time and all eternity. You will become a father in Israel and you will have the desire to raise up your children with a knowledge of the gospel. They will be a great blessing to you and to their associates. They will have a love of home and appreciate the things you have done for them.
You will have a desire to continue your education after your mission and time in the service. This knowledge will give you a vocation so that you will never lack for the necessities of life.
Continue to go to the Lord daily in prayer and to read the scriptures on a regular basis, particularly the Book of Mormon. Your knowledge, understanding, and comprehension of the gospel will continue to grow throughout your life.
You will see many of the prophecies fulfilled pertaining to the second coming of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. As you follow the guidance of the living prophets you will be protected from the trials and tribulations which are going to occur prior to this great event. One of your responsibilities is to help build up the Kingdom of God here upon the earth in preparation for His coming.
You will be an influence for good, not only during the time of your mission and afterwards, but also during the time you spend in the service of your country.
Strive to establish a home where peace, love, and harmony abide. Hold your family home evenings. Sustain and support your beloved eternal companion in her responsibilities that she might do likewise for you.
Bryce, as you go through life be of good cheer. the Lord will bless you with peace of mind, and hope. If adversity should come He will bless you to overcome these things through the faith which you will have.
As you keep the commandments and follow the prompting of the Holy Ghost you will be blessed to receive some of the gifts of the Spirit. Among these gifts will be faith, understanding, wisdom, and knowledge. These great gifts will greatly bless you in the responsibilities which will be yours.
Bryce, you are one of Heavenly Fathers [sic] special, loyal, [sic] sons and he loves you very much.
I seal these blessings upon you, Bryce, together with all former blessings which have been pronounced upon your head. I seal you up against the power of the destroyer that you might come forth on the morning of the first resurrection clothed with glory, immortality, and eternal life, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
Saul Anderson Clark,