Published: Friday, Jan. 18 2013 12:00 a.m. MST
Carol - I share your political persuaions and your experiences in my
associations at church. Usually the comments made are seemingly in jest, but
sometimes I feel there is an underlying intensity and seriousness to the jestful
remarks. I have found that I can become comfortable with my political beliefs
and how they relate to my religious beliefs. But I think the important thing is
to accept how others of the opposing political beliefs can do the same. There
is and should be a separation of our secular and religious beliefs, at least in
when they are discussed, and certainly neither side of the poltical spectrum has
a corner on rigtheous behavior. There are good, well intentioned people on both
sides of politics and we should respect that reality. And when
others stumble occasionally and make inappropriate remarks about the politicians
you support we can all just turn the other cheek and feel confident that we are
at peace with our beliefs. If I told you that was easy for me to do, or even
possible to do on a regular basis, I'd be lying to you. But trying makes
the whole situation more comfortable and more tolerable.
Couldn't agree more. Church needs to be a refuge from man made
conflict....church leaders at the ward, branch and stake need to ensure all are
welcome, and work to reduce the devise comments from church services and
Shouldn't this be a matter for the local church authorities to handle?
Church is tame compared to dealing with my ultra-conservative and outspoken
family. My tongue hurts every time I am with my parents from biting it so much.
Agreed. Our politics should not be a barrier for others who wish to worship
God. If they are, we need to do some hard introspection as to what we are
doing. If our political expressions chase others away from the Gospel of Jesus
Christ, I believe we may have something to account for.If we believe
that our political views best represent Gospel views, then no problem. If we
are right, then with continued exposure to the Gospel (not our politics) others
will come to see things more our way. If not, then maybe they were really just
our own opinions.Either way, keeping our political opinions to
ourselves when within the doors of the Church (and especially if acting in any
official capacity) is what is expected of us and is the right thing to do.
@Mike RichardsThe LDS church has stated that it believes politics should
be left out of church. This fellow's ward doesn't like to do that.
So yes it has to be handled by "local" members, but sometimes it takes
outside members to put the fire out.
AmenLocal church leaders sometimes are guilty themselves of opening
the door for politiical comments. In one instance political material was
taught, by leaders, during Sunday services. When we complained and pointed out
the false information contained in the material, we were ignored. My spouse
resigned from his leadership position and has struggled to maintain activity.
Complaints to higher-ups are just referred back to the local level.
In our ward, going to the leaders would do no good.
Amen and Amen!
When anyone thinks that they have the right to tell members of any church what
to think about anything, they have crossed a line that should never be crossed.
Talking politics over the pulpit is not allowed in any ward of the LDS Church
that I have ever attended. However, church is also a social avenue
for many. They go to church to talk to their friends. They enjoy being with
other people for several hours each week. It appears that some posters want a
"social monitor" to keep people from socializing at church. It appears
that some are so thin-skinned that they take offense when a neighbor speaks
about anything that is not on their "approved" list.Christ
discussed politics. ("Render unto Caesar . . . "). As
usual, many are using politics as a way to attack the LDS Church. If they
believed in "loving their neighbor", would they constantly be on the
A problem is authoritarians and authoritarian followers, who blindly follow.
Our local leaders believed anyone higher than them is inspired and is to be
followed without question. According to them, blind obedience is the true
course, synonymous with God commanding Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac,
forgetting that while God may be perfect, leaders are not.When we
were living on the east coast, a ward member approached a member of the
bishopric, concerned about the car in the parking lot with the John Kerry bumper
sticker. Little did the person know, the bishopric member's father was
Chairman of the local Democratic Party (but it was not his car).
Mike RichardsSouth Jordan, UtahDon't tell me, let me
guess...You are an older, white, male, Mormon, Republican, living in
Utah.Yep -- You'll never hear anyone say anything to
ruffle your feather at Church.Tell me Mike --Why do you preach
in Zion?Why do you sing to the choir?Becasue you feel safe here?Try Taking your arguments to "Babylon", post on the San
Fransico Chronicle for awhile.Like - Jonah in NinevahAlma and
the Sons of Mosiah to the Lamanites.But -- I'd reckon it's
becasue you are really just insecure and are looking for positive
re-enforcement, rather than actully sticking your neck out and tyring to make
your world a better place....
I suspect Mike R. might feel differently if he ever found himself on the
minority side of some political issue while attending church. As it is, his last
post attempts a switch on the "attacker" and the "attacked".
Re:MikeRichardsWhen one is in the minority, one does develop a thick
skin--or leaves. What would your response be if someone quoted Clinton, Obama
or Carter in a talk? What would your response be if someone in class stated
they feel it is part of God's plan that the candidate they favored lost
because it is the end times? Politics is a divisive issue and
nothing changes the "atmosphere" quicker than a political discussion.
Politics needs to be left outside church doors so everyone can enjoy the
Mike, I have lived in two wards in which the talk before and after church or in
the high priests groups was nothing short of disgusting.In fact,
when I tried to post a few things frequently heard in the ward to which I belong
now, it was denied because the language was too offensive for this board. Some
of it has come from those who are leaders. I've tried several times to
call attention to it and have been lambasted by the ones who are vocal while
others who do not speak up have come to me later to express sympathy.I was a convert to this church and am now very seriously wondering if I should
continue to belong.I'm afraid there is a tendency in any
organization to become too complacent and to let down our guard against what is
truly offensive to God while somehow continuing to believe that we are
@mike richards so how is talking about politics in keeping with the
purpose of attending church which is generally to focus on the spiritual not
worldly matters? I do not see where anyone is saying there should be a monitor
to control others in church but perhaps you should think about how your desire
to "socialize" (talk politics) interferes with your own and others
ability to focus on the spiritual rather then wordily matters, Just asking a
question and making a suggestion mike no force involved.
Far be it from me to judge what you do in your church meetings, but if this
bothers you I would suggest taking a less passive approach to political comments
you encounter in your Sunday schools and quorum meetings. If someone nudges open
the door with a political comment, kick that door wide open. Challenge them on
it. Let them know they are not speaking to a monolithic group. Non-conservative LDS Church members have plenty of ammunition on their side in
this, from the LDS Church's election-time announcement that valid views are
found in both political parties to the BYU professor's Deseret News
editorial the other day, to various Christian scripture references. Ezra Taft
Benson is the patron saint of far-right LDS conservatism, but for every loony
quote of his, there are plenty of counter-examples within the LDS Church.
Last post.Finally, when my child chose to attend the #2 university
in the U.S. for his major instead of BYU, he received major pushback from
several church members. Someone even had the gall to repeat a lie to me about
the school he chose to attend. Is there just one path for members of the LDS
church to follow? Apparently so in some people's minds. But the church
has religious institutes available to most/all college students across the
country. My son has had extremely positive experiences with the church while
attending this university, and i hope it continues. Actually it was his
experience here locally that resulted in him not even wanting to consider BYU.
We are better as people and as a church, when we can open our hearts and minds
to all--and not just become a "cookie-cutter" church.
Ok.... so this doesn't happen much.... but I don't think Mike Richards
said anything too wrong here. This is a local problem. Listen,
in this part of the country, we used to have bishops who would instruct elders
serving in their wards to not teach blacks, nor bring them to church.
Fortunately, that is an issue of the past - not too distant past - but past none
the less. I once had a child in my class whom the other kids nick named Oreo...
for obvious reasons. There were black members who lived in these
wards who suffered the indignity of this in silence. It takes the courage of a
few to start change. I have one member of my current ward leadership that I do
not agree with politically... in the extreme. He is a fine man in most other
aspects. But he and I have had numerous discussions about things that are
inappropriate to be said as a leader in the church. We still don't agree
with everything, but at least we talk.@One old Man, I have gotten up
and left meetings because of stupid people, but never the church. They
aren't worth it.
To "Carol Peterson" the problem is that much of the political
philosophies (not parties) that are taught by the world are in direct
contradiction to LDS teachings.For example, the LDS church teaches
that pre-marital sex is wrong. There are some political philosophies that teach
that not only is pre-marital sex ok, but that sex can be with any consenting
person regardless of gender.Please explain how to teach LDS doctrine
without getting political philosophy in there?For you liberals,
explain how an instructor is to explain that we should personally care for our
neighbors and not rely on others (government) to do it for us without it getting
political and offending somebody?
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