November 15, 2022
The story of Flower, the hippie ghost with scars from a bear mauling, is incrementally coming together on “Ghosts,” the CBS sitcom in the enviable positon of following “Young Sheldon” on Thursday nights.
United Methodists will also want to know the story of Sheila Carrasco, the actress who plays Flower. She’s a lifetime United Methodist and the daughter of the Rev. Oscar Carrasco, a retired pastor.
“My parents have been really devoted to the Methodist church my whole life,” said Carrasco during an interview with United Methodist News. “They set a really wonderful example for me of what it means to be a member of the community, what it means to help people and lend an empathetic ear.”
Now in its second season, “Ghosts” reached an impressive 5.9 million viewers with its Oct. 20 episode, according to TVLine.
The premise of “Ghosts” matches a couple who buy a country home with a bunch of ghosts who formerly resided there. In addition to Flower, there’s a Native American, jazz singer, Scout leader, socialite, businessman, Viking and more.
“The show — based on a British sitcom that’s streaming on HBO Max — is like ‘Friends,’ if most of the friends were dead,” Kelly Lawler from USA Today wrote in a review. “And it’s precisely the series’ mix of classic sitcom tropes with a ghostly mythology that makes it a winning and very funny formula.”
Growing up, Sheila was the classic youngest child, working to get attention from her parents and brother and sisters.
“All of my siblings are incredibly accomplished and hilarious,” she said. “But I also was very in my own world. … I had an imaginary friend. I preferred to play alone in my own imagination.”
The seemingly contradictory traits of attention-seeking and living in her own world worked together to help shape her into a performer, Carrasco said.
Growing up in her father’s churches in the Northern Illinois Conference also presented opportunities to perform.
“We would be the acolytes if an acolyte didn’t show up or sing the solo if we needed a soloist that week,” she said. “It really got us used to public speaking and not being afraid of being up in front of people. It definitely helped me a lot.”
Her mother, Joyce Carrasco, said that Sheila would sing along to records as a child, and when she got older she began writing scripts for her siblings to perform.
“She would write scripts about each of our animals,” Joyce Carrasco said. “She would personify them (so) each of the kids would be one of those animals also.”
A native of Curacautín, Chile, the Rev. Oscar Carrasco retired after serving several churches and eight years as the superintendent of the Elgin District in Illinois. He had hopes that Sheila would become a doctor.
“Each one of our children were gifted, in my view, and we did not know exactly what the gifts were,” said the Rev. Carrasco. “One of the things I mentioned to them when they were very little, was that I wanted them to be happy in life.”
When Sheila declared that she wanted the life of an artist, he had to keep his word.
“Well, I have to be true to what I said,” he said. “What I love about what she’s doing now is that she is a happy person. … Now, I have a sense of peace in my heart, and a happiness that I did not push her to be something that I wanted her to become.
“It’s all about how good God has been, and I’m grateful.”