WINONA LAKE, IN — Speculation regarding the nature of Michael Armstrong’s unspoken prayer request, which has made repeatedly over the several months, is reaching fever pitch, sources within his small group say.
“At first, I figured it was pornography,” says Sarah Hawkins, 26, a fellow group member. “Now, I’m beginning to wonder whether he’s dealing with same-sex attraction.”
Armstrong, 28, by nature a modest and reserved man, works in the financial services sector. He says he enjoys the fellowship and prayer support that his small group provides. Yet in spite of his endorsements of ‘vulnerability’ and ‘authenticity’, he has less than forthcoming with information about this unspoken request. This has led some members to suspect more nefarious goings on.
“Mike doesn’t give much away,” says Cassandra Davis, 29. “He’s very careful about what he divulges.” An important moment for Davis is when Armstrong is reported to have said, “It’s a situation that the Lord needs to speak into”—a statement she says was clearly designed to avoid admitting culpability. “That’s when it hit me: he’s got to be involved in some kind of embezzling at work.”
Group member John Fredrickson, 34, also suspects criminal wrongdoing. “Mike went to school out of state, and then he did an internship he never really talks about,” says Fredrickson. “I figure he must have gotten involved with the mafia in those years. Maybe not as an enforcer, but I could definitely see him as a mule. Maybe money laundering.”
According to people present at the meeting, discussion stopped immediately when the sound of a flushing toilet announced Armstrong’s imminent return to the room.
“Hey guys, what are we reading for next week?” he is reported to have said.
Sources confirmed that Armstrong’s sister and brother-in-law will be initiating divorce proceedings early next month.