Star Shines

By Jane McBride

(Based on a true story)

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“It’s nice to be here with you in Primary” (Children’s Songbook, 254).

Star Shines

Star tugged at her clothes. It still felt strange to wear a dress to church. In her old church the girls wore pants or shorts on Sunday. But not in her new church. She and her mom had just been baptized into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Star sighed as she looked in the mirror. She was excited to go to church for the first time as an official member, but she was also nervous. Before, she stayed with Mom the whole time at church. But this time she was going to Primary.

Star blinked at her reflection. What if she didn’t fit in? What if the other kids didn’t like her?

“Star? Are you ready?” Mom called.

Star walked downstairs. “Do I look OK?” she asked.

Mom smiled. “You look beautiful.”

Star made a face. “You have to say that. You’re my mom.”

“You’re right. I do have to say that. Because it’s true.”

Star gave a small smile. Mom always had a way of making her feel better. But there were still butterflies in her stomach. What if none of the other kids wanted to talk to her? She had friends at school, but they weren’t members of her new church. She wished she had even one friend going to church with her.

“I just remembered something I have to do,” she told Mom.

She ran back upstairs and knelt by her bed. “Dear Heavenly Father, please help me make friends. I believe what the missionaries taught is true, but I’m scared.”

Star stayed on her knees and listened. After a moment she felt a sweet, peaceful feeling, and she wasn’t so nervous anymore.

At church Star and Mom sat by a family with three little girls. The parents introduced themselves and started talking with Mom before the meeting started. Star helped the girls color a picture of Jesus.

Bishop Andrews made his way toward them. “Sister Cunningham! Star! It’s good to see you today.” He gave them each a warm smile and a handshake. Star had forgotten how nice everyone at church was. Maybe she would make a friend after all.

After sacrament meeting Star went to the Primary room. She glanced at the other kids nervously as she sat down. They were talking to each other and didn’t seem to notice her. Star’s heart sank. She’d be on her own after all.

Just then a girl Star’s age walked into the room. She looks nervous too, Star thought. I could go talk to her.

Star took a deep breath, then walked over to the girl. “Hi, my name is Star. I’m new. Would you like to sit by me?” Star held her breath. Would the girl want to be her friend?

The girl’s mouth turned up in a half-smile. “I’m Sarah. I’m new too. My family just moved here from Ontario.”

“My mom and I were baptized two weeks ago,” Star said. “I’m not sure what I’m supposed to do.”

Sarah’s smile grew wider. “We’ll figure it out together.”

Star and Sarah sat with their class. Sometimes Star caught Sarah’s eye and smiled. Sarah smiled back. Star felt calm and happy. She knew that Heavenly Father had answered her prayer and helped her find a friend.

In class the teacher asked Star and Sarah to introduce themselves.

Star stood up. “My name is Star Cunningham. My mom and I were baptized two weeks ago.” She paused, and a smile grew on her face as she looked at her new friend. “And this is my friend Sarah.”