Peanuts and the connection to Mormons…

[No. I am not claiming Charlie Brown is LDS or something silly like that (though I always wondered about that Linus kid.....)]

Charles Schulz was the genius who created Peanuts. One of his daughters joined the church and served a mission in England. Did you know that? I have for awhile, and didn’t think much of it beyond “hmm, that’s interesting.”

However -

I was reading reviews of the recent Schulz biography, when I stumbled across a blog post at Cartoon Brew. The ensuing discussion has Schulz’s children and other friends chiming in about the inaccuracies in the book. However, I found myself absolutely moved by his daughter’s description of her relationship to her dad and his reaction to her becoming Mormon:

Check it out here, and then return and report (or comment, anyway).

[You can read the whole amazing discussion if you're a Peanuts fan, but I figured this one comment would appeal to Mormons of all types, even ones without any particular affection for the classic comic strip].

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About Ivan W.

Ivan Wolfe teaches rhetoric at Arizona State University. He has a PhD in English from the University of Texas - Austin, and a BA and MA in English (with minors in Classical Greek, Music, and Philosophy) from BYU. He has several credits on various Christmas albums aimed at the LDS market, several essays in Open Court's Popular Culture and Philosophy series, and various book reviews in academic and popular venues. He also competes in Scottish Highland Games and mud run/obstacle course races, and he can deadlit over double his bodyweight (his last PR was just shy of 500 pounds). He is currently married to Lisa Renee Wolfe. He has five kids and four stepkids.

6 thoughts on “Peanuts and the connection to Mormons…

  1. All I can say is- WOW!!

    My wife’s parents are not members of the Church and it took them a lot of time to come to terms with my wife’s decision. Her parents eventually did accept her decision to join the Church. They weren’t happy about it, but they accepted it.

    Btw, just an interesting aside, Bill Keane of Family Circus fame attends the same parish as my in-laws. He does cartoons for the church announcements.

  2. I feel bad for Mr. Schultz’s family — it seems like they cooperated and it hasn’t done them any good.

    I do envy his daughter, though. There’s no way my dad would be like that about my membership in the church.

  3. Wow, Ivan, thanks for sharing that. My two oldest daughters have decided not to join the Church, and I am trying to show them the same unconditional love that Charles Schulz shows his daughter here. People go through life making decisions that are different than the ones you would make — you simply need to love them as best you can. Charles Schulz does a good job of that.

    I had no idea Charles Schulz was such a fan of the Bible. Of course there is the Peanuts Christmas special (a very moving cartoon filled with the Spirit) but it as nice to read that he really studied the scriptures with passion. A very uplifting story.

  4. “I had no idea Charles Schulz was such a fan of the Bible. Of course there is the Peanuts Christmas special (a very moving cartoon filled with the Spirit) but it as nice to read that he really studied the scriptures with passion. A very uplifting story.”

    He had biblical references throughout the strip – not in a bash-over-the-head kind of way, but here and there. One of my favorites (from around 1981) was where Charlie Brown catches Snoopy swiping food, and shows him “Thou shalt not steal” in Exodus. Snoopy takes the Bible and flips to Deuteronomy 25:4, “Thou shalt not muzzle the ox when he treads out the grain.” (For the record, the KJV reads that verse “treadeth out the corn”. I don’t know what version Schulz used.)

    A few years later, there was a Sunday strip where Lucy and Linus are trying to grasp the possibility of a pre-existence. Linus says, “The theological implications of that are way beyond me,” while Lucy wails (a couple of times) “I didn’t ask to be born!”

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