I just wish I had someone to ask questions to. I'm 65 years old and am
still looking for answers. Some of my bishops have sent me to social services
but they don't know how to help me.I've been praying for help
for over 45 years. I've tried to listen for answers but they just
don't come. I feel like I've lived 50 years in emotional hell. No
place to turn. I'm sure things could have been worse but they sure could
have been a whole lot better. Very depressed and discouraged. I'm very
happy for those who get answers to their prayers. God bless.
All issues are, after all, between the individual member and God. The BoM tells
of many factions breaking from the Church of Christ, yet the doctrine did not
change over a 1000 years. As a member since 1959, I have found nothing to
complain about, and love the Lord, his word, and the Church. Patience and true
charity will see us through, the Gospel as administered by The Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter-Day-Saints is true! One question troubled members might ask
themselves, is it worth forfeiting my Eternal Salvation? Is it making sense, my
challenging the wisdom of He who is at the head of this Church of Jesus Christ?
He knows, He knows all. Trust in Him to lead His Church.
Very good statement from the Church, and I agree with Technonerd7. While the
internet is great resource, there are far to many people that believe everything
they read on the internet and take it as the gospel truth. They give up their
ability to reason things for themselves and become enslaved and loose their
agency to falsehoods and silly lies. Too many people spend too much time reading
the tripe on the internet instead of pondering and listening to the Spirit and
exercising their agency and right to learn for themselves.Having
known and been related to members who have gone so far as to have their names
removed, most of them have a hard time living some principle or principles and
start looking for excuses. Once upon a time there was a group whose leader and
brother committed murder they went so far off the deep end. They are permanent
residents of the State Prison. People can and do get mixed up in
"groups" that lead them astray and it often seems so simple and innocent
at first. Reading the scriptures and prayerfully pondering what you
read is the best thing you can do if you need answers.
So let me get this straight. It's OK to ask questions but when you try to
organize change, then you have a problem. Didn't Joseph Smith first ask
questions and then organize change. Yes, the church has to protect its integrity
as a church and its doctrine but if there is a serious flaw don't those
that have questions have a right to try and organize for change or are the only
ones allowed to change things the ones most resistant to the change, namely the
church leaders. We've already seen how pointing out problems with the
Blacks and the Priesthood has finally been 'corrected' by the church
with the explanation that it was the opinions of church leaders and did not
represent real doctrine. How are we to know what other flaws/questions people
point out are also the same thing.
Subtext--"Folks, the gay marriage thing is over and we lost. Let's reel
in the venom and try to appear tolerant."
After the last General Conference, I wrote a letter to one of the 1st Presidency
and considering their work load and demands on their time, imagine my surprise
when 10-days latter I received a signed personal response to my question?
Excommunication does not happen in a day. It is a long process to get to the
point where the individual has just basically decided on their own that hey no
longer believe or want to adhere to the fundamental doctrines of the church. The
are not rashly made decisions. There is much discussion and prayer involved.
Some members of the church believe the church stifles debate. As long as people
don't publicly criticize the church or try to convert members away from the
church, they are free to say what they want. However, if people do publicly
criticize the church, the church may excommunicate them. The church does not
force people to confirm to established policies of the church. The church just
cancels the memberships of those speaking out against the church. The people are
still free to say what they want and to do what they want. They just can't
do so as members of the church.
Dallin H Oaks LDS Apostle said "It's wrong to criticize leaders of the
church even if the criticism is true".
A Scientist: It is not a matter of leadership not being in touch, it is a matter
of following the Lord and what he has revealed. To many people think the church
is run by the opinion of men, it is not, it is run by Christ and he communicates
with his Prophets and Apostles. That is called revelation . Having people male
or female who think they know best is the problem, they think their opinion is
just as valid as the next person and if the church was run by men that would be
true but the church is run by revelation from Christ thru his chosen servants
the prophets and they are who we need to look to for guidance . The ways of the
world are not the ways of God and the reason there are so many different
Christian churches is because they all have their own opinions as to what the
scriptures say or how they think things should be run. God is where the truth
comes from and his servants the prophets are those he has chosen to be his
spokesmen to his children here on the earth. Follow the living prophets.
I thought this was going to be an article about questioning the how the church
counts its membership numbers.
I apologize that I do not have time to read all the comments, nor consider all
the inputs. After reading many of the comments, though, I would like to give an
observation or two about disciplinary councils. I have sat on about 35
disciplinary councils over the years in a number of different roles (so far not
in front of the council, but that's a discussion for another day). I have
always seen absolute integrity and diligence in reaching a conclusion. I also
have heard a number of claims of abuses in disciplinary councils. In the cases
where I have subsequently been able to establish the facts in every case the
aggrieved party was not adhering exactly to the truth in their complaint; and in
fact, the complaints were groundless.Are there ever
errors/abuses/excesses in disciplinary councils? In a church administered by
humans the answer of necessity must be "yes." However, I doubt, based
on my experience, that they are endemic.
liberaustrian,It is difficult to have a successful dialogue when
coming from such an opposite premise. It is as if two different languages are
being used without a translator. You believe in sectarian humanism. Faithful LDS
believe in a resurrected Christ who literally communicates with a living
prophet. We believe the Church is true.If our Church was simply a
social organization that only taught the important doctrine of loving our
fellow-man, then your point would be valid. We believe in an after-life, and
that in order to return to our Heavenly Father, we have to follow Jesus Christ
and apply the mercy of His Atonement. This kind of thing may seem silly to one
who doesn't believe it, thus it is hard to have a successful dialogue.
The problem for the LDS church is that their are questions that they just do not
have answer for such as why there are not Book of Mormon artifacts on
display.... how do they answer that question?
I am sorry to see anybody stray so far from the church that a membership is
revoked. But when a person begins a "trial" over membership by insisting
that he or she will not do as his/her local leader as requested, then I fully
expect excommunication to be the end result. Nobody is excommunicated for simply
asking questions or for wishing that church doctrine were different. But
publicly lobbying for change reminds me of Martin Harris, who repeatedly asked
to take some Book of Mormon transcripts home to show his wife, and we all know
@Blue AZ Cougar,I appreciate the dialogue. I cannot say I am even
familiar with the arguments being made in the ordain women movement. I will
have to look up your references and give my opinion based on church law. The point of my comment was more about the claims of the First
Presidency to divine knowledge. The whole argument about ordaining women
becomes a lot more clear when you don't believe there is genuine prophecy
coming from Salt Lake. In my opinion, I think there should be a movement for
starting a new reformed church that is honest about its past and its source of
inspiration. There is nothing wrong with the current church, other than that
dishonesty. The teachings are fundamentally solid, however the need to believe
100% is making the church too rigid. The foundation can be restructured to
reflect the zeitgeist of today's information age without hurting the
overall message of love one another.
why is it anyone's business, Mormon or non Mormon to weigh in on this? It
is to be between the church and member, privately. unfortunately she has decided
to have her day in the sun, all 15 minutes of it.
Very nice, well-written article. There is one other important method of
determining the truth and that is by actually living the gospel. Jesus said
"If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be
of God, or whether I speak of myself." John 7:17 Try it, it works.
Who is Jessica Moody and why is she representing the Church on such a high
profile issue? I'm sure she's a fine person but hardly of the stature
one would expect for a matter of this import.
Lets also be very honest here, Kelly whatever her name is, is doing this to
boost her career. She is trying to get recognition as a civil rights activist.
She is your modern day MLK JR, or at least she thinks. It is all a publicity
stunt for her.
ForTruth,You are telling me that "cast out" doesn't
mean that yes because of their choices, they were sent out of heaven. In other
words they were cast out. Just like those who make bad choices here on earth,
they can make the bad choices but that may mean that they may get excommunicated
from the church because of those bad choices. I don't get what is so
ridiculous about that.
Whenever a Disciplinary Council is held, it is by the local leaders and NOT by
any General Authority. Though a General Authority or an Area Seventy can get
involved in advising the Stake President what he should do with the evidences
given, or if a Disciplinary Council is warranted.
The problem with The Church (culture?) is that "it/things" have never
been simple and straightforward, yet we constantly speak and portray things as
black/white, true or untrue--that we have all the answers. Yet, they
aren't and we don't. Adam and Eve--from God's mouth
to their ears (not via a mortal, fallible intermediary) they were given 2
different commandments--multiply and replenish, don't partake of the fruit
of knowledge, and then it unfolded from there. Adam and Eve muddled through,
making mistakes.All knowledge is not found in the scriptures and
through prayer. If it were, we would be like Christian Scientists, eschewing
modern science and medicine. Society evolves, previous beliefs and practices
fall away as people become more enlightened. But we are all mortal and
fallible. Some of us are seekers, some of us seek safety in the status quo. We
need both kinds. The status quo to remind us of potential hazards and the
seekers to push us to higher levels. The younger generation teaches the old,
and the old teaches the young.Stop the myth-making of
straightforwardness, and infallibility whether it applies to church
policy/doctrine, leadership etc
I feel like there are a few points in this discussion I'd like to make. 1.
The Gospel of Jesus Christ is not a democracy. I feel like a lot of people are
missing this point. 2. Any person is allowed to question the Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter Day Saints and its leadership, but there is a HUGE difference
between personal questions that you study out in your own mind and creating
dissension in a group of people.
@ Laura Bilington - Maple Valley, WA - "SlackTime, please understand that
there are many faithful Mormons who believe that Christ has spoken--but that the
Prophet is not listening."Then they are not, and I quote,
"faithful" Mormons.How can they be "faithful"
Mormons if they do NOT have "faith" in the prophet?
Article quote: "What causes concern for Church leaders is when personal
motivations drive those conversations beyond discussion, and a person or group
begins recruiting others to insist on changes in Church doctrines or structure.
When it goes so far as creating organized groups, staging public events to
further a cause or creating literature for members to share in their local
congregations, the Church has to protect the integrity of its doctrine as well
as other members from being misled. ..... If our personal goals go beyond what
has been provided from those sources, we must ask ourselves whether we are we
trying to change His Church to match our own perspective."If one
refuses to see that then they are truly blind. I say "refuses" instead
of "cannot" because it is in fact that obvious.I wish the
best for those who oppose the LDS church, especially current and former members.
Please, please choose wisely.
The church is accused by followers of Ordain Women and Mormon Stories of trying
to control the message and perhaps they are right to a certain degree. After
all, the leaders of the church are the ones accountable for the message of the
church or their spokespeople. This is a beautifully crafted
response to critics of the church. Unfortunately John Dehlin and
Kate Kelly are doing the same thing. Anytime I try to post any support for the
church and I might say in a very respectful way, they do not allow it to be
posted on the comment board of Ordain Women. MormonStories or
FeministMormonHousewives. In other words, all they allow at this time is people
that give them warm fuzzies. Talk about calling the kettle black? So much for
open stories….No critics allowed!
If decisions are given solely to "local" authorities that's
disturbing too. You can have a bishop that is kind, understanding and loving
involved, or, a bishop the lives by the hard core letter of the law and
you're doomed. There is no comparison to the two.I used to be
dumbfounded as a member of the high council at decisions that were made.
@Laura Billington Christ has spoken, you may be the one not listening. I
suggest that you read and re read the last general conference talks cover to
cover, and then do it again. After all they are the teachings for our time. It
would be very helpful for you.
Don't ask serious questions about doctrine. If you do, you sincerely run
the substantial risk of excommunication. Been there, had that happen.
Ok, let's look at this situation. Some people want things different. We
are not making them happy. How big of a percentage of the membership are they?
Should we discard all the doctrine that the church is built on to make a few
people happy? Should we prostitute the whole church for the sake of a small
unhappy few that aren't getting their way? Should we take the church down
the same path that the leaders of our country have hijacked the USA down? If we
do... we will end up like all the rest of the religions that Joseph Smith looked
at and tried to decide which was "the right one". We will just be
another apostasy upon the planet. This church was set up and run by the Savior
of all mankind. You either believe that or you don't. If you believe this
church is wrong, start your own. I know the shepherd left the 99 to find the
one,,, but in this case the 1 wants to lead the 99 astray.
>>You tell them to question, they question, and then they get derided
and threatened when they get a different answer on one thing.We
believe that the Lord isn't going to give you a different answer "on
one thing." The Lord doesn't instigate doctrinal changes by revealing
differing answers to random members -- that's a recipe for anarchy.If the Lord wants to change the doctrine, he will reveal it to the
prophet. The prophet will explain the change to the Quorum of the Twelve, who
will fast and pray to receive their own spiritual witness that the change is
inspired. Once the First Presidency and the Twelve are unanimous, the change
will be announced in General Conference or through a special Letter from the
First Presidency that all local leaders will read from the pulpit. All members
can then fast and pray to receive their own witness that it's the right
course.There is an organized, orderly process by which these things
are done that allows members to have confidence that any doctrinal changes are
inspired. Random members organizing Temple Square protests isn't it.
"Church members will live in this wheat-and-tares situation until the
Millennium. Some real tares even masquerade as wheat, including the few eager
individuals who lecture the rest of us about Church doctrines in which they no
longer believe. They criticize the use of Church resources to which they no
longer contribute. They condescendingly seek to counsel the Brethren whom they
no longer sustain. Confrontive, except of themselves, of course, they leave the
Church, but they cannot leave the Church alone." ~ Elder Neal A. Maxwell,
People can discuss whatever they want, but they shouldn't think there are
no consequences. There are consequences for everything, and the Internet is a
public forum where people can and will judge you.Of course people
are claiming that their disciplinary councils or excommunications are being
directed from Church headquarters. They want to play the victim for the media
and insist on being portrayed as persecuted. In reality they are the persecutors
and the Church is defending itself, just as it always has done. The
Church's doctrinal integrity is solid, built on the firm foundation that is
Christ. The integrity of the members though, and their testimonies, is not so
solid—and the Church must defend them against those lying in wait to
decieve. It controls no one. It simply holds them accountable and does not allow
them to abuse their membership to advance nefarious goals.
I thought the article was great and right on the money! What worries me with
all the comments, criticisms, and back biting is that there is such an
atmosphere of great contention. I don't believe in the way OW is going
about things. There very name tells us so much. We have learned over and over
and over again in the scriptures that when we have this much contention, it
certainly is not from the Lord. We have a prophet who leads and guides this
church and we all need to get a testimony of him. He is not always going to say
things or ask us to do things that are easy and we may at times disagree with
him but we are never to follow him with blind faith. Rather, we are told to get
on our knees and get a testimony of what we are being asked to do for ourselves.
Satan must be laughing up a storm at all this contention. Now there is
something to think about.
As for me and my house, we will follow the prophet.I think we all need to
step back and realize that this statement was made by someone named Jessica
Moody. I have never heard of her before and I have never sustained her as a
prophet seer and revelator. I am going to listen closely to President
Monson's talks in the October General Conference and follow his direction
on this matter.
@Laura Bilington - That is a line of thinking that, taken to it's logical
end, leads to a disbelief in the Church. There are countless examples of people
in the scriptures that thought they new better than the prophets - what happened
to them?@Liberaustrian - Having an honest discussion is fine - giving
ultimatums ("I will not stop until they change church doctrine") is not
fine. Everyone - have faith, the Lord will see things through. I will
follow the words of the prophets. Are they infallible? No, but they have never
led me do break God's commandments.
To-Laura Bilington"SlackTime, please understand that there are
many faithful Mormons who believe that Christ has spoken--but that the Prophet
is not listening."I think you have your answer. If you believe
that the Prophet is not listening to God, then this is no longer his church, and
therefore it makes sense for you to leave. Period. If you believe that he
still listens, then stay. Its not rocket science. You either believe he is the
mouthpiece or you don't. I don't see why this is a hard thing to
understand.However, if you go down that path, and your pride
prevented you from seeing he is the true mouthpiece of the Lord, then you bring
the wrath of God upon yourself. I hope you and others who are
confused, or believe that the Prophet is no longer listening to God find what
you are after and find peace. That being said, the church will not change
doctrine on the whim of the members, rather it will change its teachings WHEN
and IF God directs the Brethren to do so. Not because society thinks it is
Personally, I'm not concerned about excommunication, but I am concerned
about losing my temple recommend simply because I support marriage equality.
(I'm pretty much a TBM otherwise.) I have a gay son and believe he should
have the same privileges and rights that others have. I've expressed this
idea to local leadership and have been chastised, and also cautioned that my
temple recommend may be revoked. I love the Gospel, but I also love my son and
support him completely. I find all of this quite troubling.
I have no brief for the issue of whether women ought to be ordained. I
don't find any explicit divine decree that they shouldn't (apart from
the passages in 1st Corinthians that says they shouldn't even talk at all
in church, which we're already ignoring), but on the other hand, there is a
custom and practice established.But I do very much oppose the idea
that public criticism of Church leaders is never righteous. I am persuaded that
the Church would not have abandoned its blasphemous policies regarding
priesthood restrictions on people of African descent if Church members had not
"withstood [them] to the face, for they were to be blamed." Sometimes
necessary changes come through the operation of regular ecclesiastical
processes. Sometimes those processes perpetuate the problem. God sends us not
only prophets, but "scribes and wise men." Sometimes the former need
the latter as much as the other way around.If the Church's
judgments concerning priesthood eligibility are sound, they will endure, no
matter how many people criticize them. If they are not, they will fail -- and
those responsible, if they suppress their critics, will have compounded one
error with another.
The church has some skeletons in its closet regarding its history. Some things
are not taught about in Sunday school or any other lesson in the church. What
happens when someone stumbles upon some of the more questionable facts of church
history but gets no answers from their leaders. Sorry but "pray harder"
solution is not a meaningful way to help people.The church needs to be
open and honest and teach the correct history of the church, what you get in the
lesson manuals is not the full picture.
Whether it's gay supremacists trying to get people fired for having the
wrong opinions on redefining marriage, the IRS trying to suppress anti-tax
groups, or churches disciplining their critics, I have a basic presumption that
when somebody's argument consists of "shut up," he doesn't
have much of an argument.There is no reasonable possibility that an
LDS member will be "misled" by a lay member as to what the official
doctrine of the Church is. The Church can make that perfectly clear (when it
wants to). What we have here is an institution that believes the best response
to a critical argument is not a better argument, but to shut the critic up. I have more confidence that truth will prevail than to think we need
SlackTime, please understand that there are many faithful Mormons who believe
that Christ has spoken--but that the Prophet is not listening.
@Kjirtsin's:My answer to you about same sex marriage would be we
should be grateful then that we have modern day revelation, that we have a
prophet, God's mouth piece on earth today to confront the things that we
are encountering in our day, if there is indeed no scriptural precedence. But
this would require us to believe and trust in the prophet, which I haven't
seen from many of the naysayers. Some commenters above cry out that this is
similar to Joseph Smith's time and that the church is acting like those
other churches. I can see one big difference here though. Those churches were
NOT led by Jesus Christ. Those churches were not HIS church. If you believe that
this is HIS church, then we need to have faith in his living prophet and
apostles. The Bible does teach us that homosexuality is indeed a sin. Lev.
18:22 "Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is
abomination." The prophets and apostles have not stayed silent on this
matter. There were several talks last conference that made that very clear. I
suggest listening to them again.
@liberaustrianFair enough, let's have an open discussion about it.
To kick things off, here are some relevant passages of scripture, etc. that I
think are pertinent to the discussion:a) Hebrews 5:1-4b)
Article of Faith #5c) D&C 20:38-67d) D&C 84:30-34e)
D&C 107:40, 99f) Official Declaration #2 (it should be remembered that
this revelation removed the church practice of preventing blacks from receiving
the priesthood, and does not overturn a previous revelation stating that blacks
should not have the priesthood. Therefore, this was not a change in church
doctrine but is a change in church policy/administration)g) The Keys and
Authority of the Priesthood, Elder Dallin H. Oaks, April 2014 General
Conferenceh) Handbook 2: Administering the Church, Section 2.1 (this is
available through the LDS website, just type 'Priesthood Keys' in the
search bar and it will come up)I honestly want to know what you
think of those things and how they correlate with the Ordain Women movement.
Please respond and let's keep it civil.
It’s no great mystery why a member facing disciplinary action would feel
intimidated by a proceeding initiated by a local church leader who wants it kept
behind closed doors.
I do wonder if the recent statements from the church about race and the
priesthood (renouncing the explanations for the ban taught by previous leaders)
and statements along the lines of LDS leaders being capable of being wrong (like
in Elder Uchtdorf's conference talk last year) has opened the door more to
this line of doubt... what else might be wrong? If we know that church leaders
have taught things in the past that are incorrect then what might be considered
wrong down the road that is taught now? Hindsight is 20/20 (actually some people
are bad with history, maybe more like 20/40) but foresight is more difficult.
Are members supposed to be forward thinking in trying to figure out which things
might be considered incorrect later, or should they stick to what is currently
taught and risk being wrong later like those who believed incorrect things about
race/priesthood? Not sure there's an easy answer but it means that what
might seem like a clear statement (Elder Oaks' priesthood talk) perhaps
these days is more vulnerable to the thoughts of "okay...but what if
This is nothing. This answers noting. For members who have real questions
about the church's past and foundation, this is simply the same beating
around the bush I get from every member I speak with. The difference between
doctrinal truth and fact make this statement meaningless. The questions are
about facts about church history, not how to get answers from prayers. If the
foundation is corrupt, it will all come down. If it is not corrupt, it will
remain. Let's be open about our doubts to let the foundation be exposed.
We will all benefit from open honest discussion. This may seem hard or scary to
some, it is what is necessary for the truth to come out. The world and reality
in general are much more complex than we often give credit. Because there is no
easy explanation, burying ones head in the sand is only perpetuating problems.
It is not solving them. If you are not aware of the claims, you should make
yourself aware. Your faith needs to be tested by this, because it would be
worthless if it cannot withstand this information.
First, NO ONE HAS BEEN EXCOMMUNICATED. Good grief they have only been warned.
Second, while Kate's actions aren't right and her cause is
off. There are millions of women in the Church who do agree (with men as well)
that the Church is too slow on non-doctrinal issues. Like women holding more
responsibilities in the Church and speaking in all sessions of conference, GAs
representing the mix of the Church and a few other basics that have NOTHING to
do with doctrine.
The statement doesn't really address much but it's really all the
church can say. My question after reading the NY Times article and now this is
if the statements made in the Times are accurate how would the church defend
that? If people are really being called in because of statements they have made
on Facebook or Twitter I think it would be pretty hard for the church to justify
monitoring regular members social media. I would like to know how
people would feel about this if it turns out to be accurate.
Remember that in matters of church discipline, the priesthood leader must keep
matters confidential, while the member who is being tried has no such
obligation. So if a member who is being tried goes public with criticism,
accusations, or complaints against the church or church leader while
disciplinary proceedings are going on, you should know that you are not getting
the whole story, and in most cases, not even part of it. In my view, making
accusations against the church when the church leaders are not at liberty to
respond is a special kind of cowardice. Nine out of ten times, I question the
integrity of the accuser. One of the many reasons that trust in the leadership
of the church is important, is that prevents liars and apostates from getting
the upper hand and avails confidentiality to the repentant sinner.
This statement seems less an answer to member questions and more a responce to
member demands. Questions do arise (I have personally experienced a few in my
life) that cannot be answered by the scriptures because they are questions about
Church policy, and local leaders are just as confused as you are about such
questions. In these kinds of cases (i.e. actual legitimate questions and not
demands that doctrine change), a method of asking questions would be nice just
because there's no other way to know to what to do. Want some examples? If
a family is baptised just before the parents divrce (and thus they are never
sealed in the temple), and the mother remarries in the temple (but does not
include the child in her sealing), how can that child be sealed to her parents?
Further, if a worthy member's poor health restricts the wearing of many
kinds of clothes (including garments and Temple clothes), can they be Endowed?
If not, can they even be Sealed? If not, can they ensure these ordinances will
be done after their death? Should said person enter the Temple at all? These are
"The big question I have is "When is the Church going to do something
about Harry Reid?" "Wow. That is scary. If
"the church" starts doing "something about Harry Reid", it would
be time to insure that we do not elect members of the LDS church to government
positions.Harry Reid, like every other elected official were elected
to represent their constituents. Not their church.
@SlackTime"If you get another answer, if Moroni's promise
doesn't work for you, then go enjoy the religion God directs you to. That
won't bother me, or any other member of the LDS Church in the least.
"I was using it as an example. But what if someone gets a
different answer on some piece of church doctrine while believing the rest, like
Ordain Women? You tell them to question, they question, and then they get
derided and threatened when they get a different answer on one thing. So much
The church clearly stated that there is nothing wrong with asking questions.
Asking is not the problem. The problem comes when you dont like the answer and
you try to FORCE changes and cause a big stink when things don't go the way
To "Clint2" how do you know that the Church hasn't done something
about Harry Reid? For all we know, he has been disfellowshipped or
ex-communicated.Also, as has been stated quite clearly before. You
don't get ex-communicated for expressing an opinion. You get
ex-communicated when you rally others to join you in publically petitioning the
LDS church to change its doctrine.While I don't agree with
Harry Reid, when has he gone so far as to petition the LDS church to change its
"....What causes concern for Church leaders is when personal motivations
drive those conversations beyond discussion, and a person or group begins
recruiting others to insist on changes in Church doctrines or
it’s fair for me to mention the Church role in California’s
Proposition 8. That was a case of Church leadership using the pulpit to mobilize
membership into a proactive force on one specific side of a California ballot
referendum. I see no reason why individual Church members should not be able to
likewise organize and consort on behalf of or in opposition to an issue.
The big question I have is "When is the Church going to do something about
Harry Reid?" He is constantly going in the opposite direction of the Church,
but he is still a member in good standing with the Church. He is all for
abortion, full women’s rights, drug use and uses his position in the
government to promote his views that are in opposition to the Church. If the
Church is going to excommunicate people or has them to terminate their
membership in the church for expressing their opinions on the internet, then the
Church needs to take a harder look at Harry Reid!!!!!!!!!!
Seems kinda hypocritical to suggest there's no spiritual peril in public
messaging, or that it has no influence on anyone. If that were the case no one
would bother to post a single response here, regardless of your perspective on
Well said.The bottom line is when it comes down to EARNESTLY pondering,
praying, and asking about something, with an unbiased desire to receive an
answer...that takes a great amount of humility.Contrast that with those
referenced. Night and day.
Let's try this again, since so many are not being honest in their
description of these events...No one is being punished for asking
questions, whether they be hard or easy. My word, the whole reason we have the
restoration of the Gospel is because Joseph Smith asked questions. Yes, most of
those being very hard questions.Secondly, they are not being
punished. (Not yet anyway.) They are being called into a council to answer
questions on whether or not they, by their actions, are advocating for and/or
leading others in the church astray.1. You can question all you
want!2. You cannot go around teaching others in the church that your
view is correct and the leaders of the church are wrong. If you are
doing the first you are fine. If you are doing the second, you will be given an
opportunity to explain, and if determined you are leading others astray, an
opportunity to repent. Should you not repent, then you will be asked to
leave.It isn't rocket science. After reading the above, those
who are still advocating that these two are receiving punishment for the first,
are intentionally being deceitful.
I have been involved in church discipline, both as a recipient of it, and as a
ward clerk who sat in on a few Bishop's Councils. This week marks the 20th
anniversary of my excommunication from the Church. I was re-baptized 13 years
ago, and had my Priesthood and Temple blessings restored 12 years ago. Church
discipline was one of the best things that ever happened to me. I had made
solemn covenants in the Temple, and I was violating them (Law of Chastity). Like
many members involved in serious sin, I didn't realize that I needed to be
excommunicated so that I would repent. If I wouldn't have been, I would
probably not have repented still to this day. There are a couple of things not
being mentioned much in the media. First of all, if you read Kate Kelly's
letter that she posted on line, her Bishop said he could work with her on a
possible time change for her council. 2nd-any decision may be appealed to the
First Presidency (D & C 102). 3rd- These people made covenants that they are
Kings Court,Yes, a religion was born and converts were recruited
when a 14-year-old boy went beyond asking questions. Then again, Joseph Smith
also didn't try to gut the Methodist Church to fit his liking either. So
if these people are confident they have the moral authority and divine
direction, and that the LDS Church is out of line, then they are free to start
there own church. The LDS Church sure won't stop you. However, if they
are going to remain within the church, know that the leadership of the church
has no obligation to let itself get manipulated.
atl134, your concern doesn't make a lot of sense to me.If you
get another answer, if Moroni's promise doesn't work for you, then go
enjoy the religion God directs you to. That won't bother me, or any other
member of the LDS Church in the least. I have long been an advocate that you
should believe in the religion you attend. If you believe in another religion,
please, go worship there.If however you believe, with me, that
Christ does guide this Church, that the leadership is inspired, and that the
President/Prophet of the Church holds the keys of the Priesthood and uses, and
conferrs them, in accordance with Christ's will, then you will understand
that it really doesn't matter how many others "want the Church to
change", the Church changes when Christ directs it to change, and we,
Christ's sheep, hear his voice and follow. Could Christ direct him to
change? Sure, but until that happens, public demonstrations will be foolishness,
and will result in excommunication.
This sounds reasonable until you think about how this would sound if any other
organization said the same thing. Please feel free to question but keep in mind
that we are never wrong and don't get in our way. If it turns out that we
were actually wrong, we will let you know 50 years later.
If I remember my church history correctly, a 14 year old boy in the early
1800's went beyond just asking questions. A whole religion was born and
converts were recruited.
@raybies"Two prominent bloggers who have media attention were informed
by local leaders independently about disciplinary action. The timing is
circumstantial. These cases are entirely up to local leadership."Along with Kelly's parents in a different state (Utah as opposed to
Virginia) getting their temple recommends taken away a week before Kelly got her
disciplinary hearing letter?@MercyNLovelie"This is a
religion that encourages questions and asking God directly for answers."The problem is what happens when people get anything other than a
specific "right" answer? There are quite a large number of people who
think anyone who tried Moroni's promise and didn't get an affirmative
answer wasn't sincere or some other negative opinion of those individuals.
There are approved ways to seek change in the Church, and unapproved ways.If I perceive a flaw in the Church I can:1. Talk about it with my
Bishop.2. Talk about it with my Stake President. (Generally will be
referred back to the Bishop unless the perceived flaw is in my Bishop)3.
Write to my Area Authority Seventy, or to an Apostle, to the President, or some
other General Authority. (Such questions may get referred back to your Bishop or
Stake President)4. After discussion with the appropriate leader I will be
given counsel. I can agree or not with the counsel given.If however,
I choose to go public with something, and publicly criticize the Church, or its
leadership, and if I promote teachings that are contrary to the Church and will
not cease public promotion of them, then the Church has no choice but to
separate my teachings from the Church.This is an excellent statement
from the Church.
Herby, as has been previously mentioned. Satan had the right to choose. and he
wasn't punished or cast out for making a choice. He was "cast out for
rebellion." That would be acting out his thoughts and choices. Everyone is
free to choose, however, they are not free to choose the consequence of their
When living in another city, i wrote a letter to the editor about same-sex
marriage. An Area 70 read it and called my stake pres. The SP called the
bishop who visited me. The Bishop said that the 70 called the SP and told him
to take my temple recommend. The SP sent the bishop to do it. The bottom line
is that disciplinary actions are NOT always initiated at the local level. They
sometimes come from way up the food chain. I was given no hearing or
opportunity to explain/defend my position. I was simply pronounced guilty.Sometimes, when people have questions and can't get answers from
local leaders, they look online. For years, I've asked how we could have
supported Prop. 8 when 1 Cor. 10:29 and D&C 134:4 condemn using one's
religious beliefs to infringe upon the rights and liberties of others, which
Prop. 8 did since gays had the right to marry prior to 8's passage.
I've received no answers yet on how I'm misapplying those verses. People should be free to look whereever for answers without having their
motives questioned or membership threatened.
This bothers me a lot. I have had issues with people in the church who have had
mental illness--narcissistic sociopaths to be exact. The local leaders did not
/ DO NOT handle this situation well at all. It isn't inspired or kind.
There needs to be a way to appeal, a way to get more skilled insight, a way to
over ride the popularity contest it becomes. I find the priesthood
issue to not make sense and it has gotten beyond old. They should of done
something about it a long time ago. But it is highly offensive that they would
hold it where she can't defend herself. Held in "secrecy" allows
huge abuses to occur.An example of mental illness issue. I was
visiting teaching a girl and made a handout with makeup samples to invite her to
the event. She went and told the bishop that a visiting teacher should know her
better down to her perfume preferences. The bishop called me in and told me to
buy her a $60 dollar of perfume. Church leadership can not handle these types
of situations and there needs to be a way to appeal to higher resources.
I'm not LDS so its unclear to me how these actions are going to stop people
from being "misled." There's nothing quite like "forbidden
fruit" to drive a lot of web-traffic to a blogger with a message.
To "RichardB" you forget that it was Satan that wanted to change
God's plan. Satan was thrown out of heaven (ex-communicated) for
recruiting people to join him in his efforts to change God's plan.To "A Scientist" did you even read the article? The problem
isn't having questions and seeking out others to help answer them. The
problem is when you recruit people to your cause and seek to tell the church
leadership that LDS doctrine must be changed.
The Rock Waterman case is one of the reasons I do not believe in the propaganda
arm of the LDS Church (The New York Times has a good article on this). This
crackdown is much broader than most local members realize. This is not just
Kate Kelly and John P. Dehlin but extends Rock Waterman, Kevin Klossterman, and
Hannah Wheelwright along with others. These cases are not being conducted by
local authorities but by area seventies and a former stake president as in
Hannah's case. I guess that is obfuscating for the Lord? Since
the Propaganda Ministry wants to use Joseph Smith's questioning as an
example of how open the LDS Church is it's members asking questions. I
would like to suggesting that the example of Joseph Smiths early life can also
be used to show the reaction of established Churches in Joseph's time seem
to be more in line with how the LDS Church is reacting to those who question
today. Instead of mob violence they use violence of excommunication. Both, out
of love for the offender.
Kjirstin - I have seen similar situations of inconsistent messages
at the ward or stake level. We have a friend who was denied a temple recommend
for hone schooling her kids!All I can say is that supports the
concept that local leadership is not under a "heavy hand" from Salt
Lake. Bishops and Stake Presidents lead by the spirit and have counsellors to
help them. On minor points, they may differ. That does not bother me, becasue
imperfect people will make mistakes. It is not for me ot judge those leaders -
I can't imagine the stress that a bishop has leading an entire ward.The central message of the Church is not changed by these situations.
Christ's dosctine (from 3 Nephi) is (paraphrasing) repent, become as a
little child, and be baptised.
If you want to improve here is one way you might. Work to get rid of the false
doctrine that you are necessarily always right. The Church leaders in the time
of Jesus were not. They rejected Jesus. Yet Jesus acknowledged them as being
in Moses seat. The early Christian church also fell away from the truth such
that a restoration became necessary. Todays church leaders hold to doctrines
that directly contradict doctrines held by early Church leaders. Now it may be
that today's LDS church leaders are right and yesteryears were mistaken.
Either way this is further illustration that LDS church leaders are capable of
teaching doctrinal errors. Just as leaders of other churches that God has
established in times past were capable of doing the same thing.No
one rightly expects perfection. But a humble attitude is and would be
I don't know what doctrine the Church is trying to protect or correct. Ally
Isom said it herself on KUER this week with Doug Fabrizio--there's nothing
in Mormon doctrine that says women can't hold the priesthood. So what
apostasy are they guilty of?Even Gordon B. Hinckley in 1997 said
women that women can't hold the Priesthood CAN change:"RB:
Is it possible that the rules could change in the future as the rules are on
Blacks?GBH: He could change them yes. If He were to change them
that's the only way it would happen. RB: So you'd have to
get a revelation?GBH: Yes. But there's no agitation for that.
We don't find it."So what is this about? Church leadership
can stop this if they want.
Brent T. Aurora CO seems to have a nuanced understanding of the issue.Hypothetical C:In their search for truth, the group prayerfully
"studies it out" in the scriptures and historical writings, and provides
their research results to Church leadership to give context to their honest
questions.But their questions continue to not be adequately
addressed.They wonder if they are a small, isolated group who share
the questions, or if there are many others (perhaps 40% of women and 75% of men)
Church-wide who also see no reason why women could not be ordained.How do they find out?They "go public" and give members the
opportunity to express their voices. They hold gatherings to get the word out -
who else has these questions? Does anyone else have answers that they missed?
This is dialogue.But leadership feels threatened.Leadership mis-characterizes the group as "trying to gain followers"
and "staging very public protests", and they officially threaten the
group "leaders".But the group is not "protesting";
they are "advertising" and discussing to discover who else has the same
questions.It's called "crowd sourcing", not
"protesting".But out of touch leadership doesn't get
What discourages me is that, when in dealing with the people, leaders in the
Church sometimes do not use the scriptures as their guide. I fear we
concentrate more on a portion of verse 43 than the totality of these verses from
section 121: 41 No power or influence can or ought to be maintained
by virtue of the priesthood, only by persuasion, by long-suffering, by
gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned; 42 By kindness, and
pure knowledge, which shall greatly enlarge the soul without hypocrisy, and
without guile— 43 Reproving betimes with sharpness, when moved
upon by the Holy Ghost; and then showing forth afterwards an increase of love
toward him whom thou hast reproved, lest he esteem thee to be his enemy; 44 That he may know that thy faithfulness is stronger than the cords of
death.I hear of people being told to quit writing books/blogs or to
shut up or not being allowed to speak in courts. How is that Christ-like?Also it saddens me to continue hearing reports that these actions occur
at the direction/suggestion of general authorities. Discipline is supposed to
be local, except for the President.Steve
I really feel for those members who are being led to call the Church into
question for these disciplinary councils. It is sad when people are led astray
and spend their time wrapped up in minutae or another member's opinion
instead of the Gospel. I have had a lot of questions during the past
8 years as I returned to activity in the Church. I always has a good Bishop or
scripture and prayer to guide me to the answers. That is where we are to go. I
have also had a few members make comments or try to push their own band of
Mormon doctrine. I even learned in Sunday School once that Noah lived near
Nephi (Utah) because that is there they found gopher wood to make the ark!!Robert Millet writes that members should always remain in the
"mainstream of the Church". When we get to far ahead of ourselves, we
can lose the light that illuniates our path. I pray that Ms. Kelly, Mr. Dehlin,
and those who are doubting will find that light again...
The trouble, as usual, lies in an unwillingness to be truly transparent. If you
can't be fully open and honest in all things, everybody wonders what is
being hidden.As a journalist, I want to know all sides of a story.
What I have found may surprise our top leadership: middle management is
waffling. One of my friends has a bishop who told her he finds "no
scriptural precedent to deny marriage between same sex couples." One of my
other friends was told by her bishop, "Your membership and recommend are in
serious jeopardy by joining Mormons Building Bridges, which is an apostate
group." This came as quite a shock to me, as I joined Mormons
Building Bridges twenty months ago. I plan to ask my bishop which side he is on,
but as for my Heavenly Father, I firmly believe He wants us to love everyone,
and build bridges wherever possible.
@Sneaky JimmyI think it's completely coincidental. My guess is when
Kate Kelly went public with her letter, Dehlin decided to do the same. If
everyone who has received a disciplinary letter from the church in the last
month simultaneously posted those letters online, we'd all think the church
was coordinating some large effort to clean house. It's not a coordinated
effort, though, and is left entirely to local leadership.I asked my
dad about this a few days ago (he's been a bishop and high councilor
several times). He explained that church discipline is carried out primarily at
the ward level (occasionally at the stake level). He would have frequent visits
with the stake president to discuss if the action he was taking was appropriate,
laying out the facts but very rarely naming names. In his experience, he said
there was never any involvement with area leadership or church HQ, and that at
no time were they ever directed by area leadership or church HQ to discipline
anyone. They had some pretty serious cases of apostasy, etc. too. So no, I
don't think this was a coordinated effort by church HQ.
President Harold B. Lee:“You may not like what comes from the
authority of the Church. It may conflict with your political views. It may
contradict your social views. It may interfere with some of your social life
… Your safety and ours depends upon whether or not we follow …
Let’s keep our eye on the President of the Church.” (Conference
Report, October 1970, p. 152–153.)Well said. It's as
simple as that.
@RaybiesJessica Moody is not the same person who was on the Doug Fabrizio
@AT"There's enough evidence counter to the statement in this
article to reasonably question whether the LDS Church representative is being
truthful."Could you please share what evidence you have, aside
from the statements of those individuals undergoing church discipline? Contrary
to what you may think, the church does not have the resources (or even desire)
to monitor the comment boards across the internet. This isn't a witch
hunt, and we aren't the NSA. Furthermore, they haven't been
excommunicated yet. At the moment they are going through church discipline.
Excommunication is not a foregone conclusion.@RichardB"Teach them the truth, and give them their free agency to decide."We do. They have their free agency. But that doesn't mean they
can retain their membership in the church while simultaneously undermining its
Does anyone honestly believe the timing on these disciplinary courts were
coincidental? One in Cache Valley and one in Virginia (event thought the
member had moved to Utah). So God inspired the local leaders to discipline these
members at the exact same time?
Hypothetical Action A: In personal, online and general blogging conversations a
question arises causing concern and deep searching to understand a doctrine.
This conversation escalates to the point where a group of individuals submit
their question, similarly articulated, to local leadership; they agree in their
conversation that their concerns have not been adequately addressed; they pick
one or two individuals from their online community to seek answers from area
authorities and even eventually send these concerns above all their signatures
to General Authorities. Theirs is an honest search for truth and peace, with
testimony of God's chosen to give them His answer. Answered or not, they
have now "privately" made their point and await an outcome.Hypothetical Action B: They choose to make their search public, seeking to
either enlighten or otherwise gain followers. They stage a very public protest.
Upon making their intentions clear to hold a second public protest, they are
officially and publicly warned not to do so; they are asked to keep the issue
private and not seek to publicly embarrass the church. They hold their protest
anyway.First scenario is fine. The second they crossed a line; this
can ultimately cost them their membership.
This is a very nice white washing of the NY Times article. None of the
statements from people actually facing discipline were included. No where does
it mention bishops talking to members about their facebook or twitter posts. The
statement from the member in Virginia who's bishop quoted back to her a
statement she made in an anonymous chat room is also left out. Only the
statements of the church made it through the filter.
Herby.... That is the most ridiculous statement I've read.
Lucifer (Satan/Devil) was cast out of heaven along with a third part because of
rebellion. It was their choice. We all have the gift of agency, and our choices
determine our progression. We have the choice to live God's commandments,
but not the consequences that come from disobedience.
AT,"Some people being ex'd, aren't trying to
"change" the Church; they're pointing out flaws."That is a contradictory comment. If you are "pointing out the flaws"
of an organization, you are telling them how to change to make it better.As a member of the LDS church I often have questions, and I will look
online, and I will ponder things. However, my core testimony is strong enough
to bring me back to having faith that the leaders of the church are leading the
church where it needs to go, and if something needs to change, they will get the
inspiration to do so.As a member I would caution others that look
online, there are many truths online, but there are many half truths and lies
online as well.
Don't rock the boat. You can't want change, you'll just be told
about it if an when it happens.
I can comprehend someone disagreeing with church doctrine, but not lobbying to
try to change it. Either buy into it or walk away from it—"it"
being both the doctrine and the church. A church built on the premise of
modern-day revelation cannot be expected to modify its dogma based on group
discussion. That said, lately we've been seeing a blurring of the line
between doctrine and opinion in the church in some areas—shifting
attitudes and church commentary regarding the priesthood ban come to
mind—where some folks understandably come away feeling like the court of
public opinion did have some influence on church leadership positions. Now, the
church's position is that it wasn't bowing to public pressure that
caused the change, but greater divine light being shed on the matter. I get
that, but those who might not see it that way are mistakenly encouraged to lobby
for change in public forums as they have.
ATI seriously question anyone who claims to be receiving discipline
via SLC just for being vocal about flaws. Half the membership would be gone.
This is a religion that encourages questions and asking God directly for
answers.On the other hand, I do know that SLC directs local leaders
on occasion. Those cases involve serious crimes such as child abuse, for
example. I know from personal experience - SLC handled a case when I was a child
and reported to law enforcement. They took every consideration and respected my
privacy and dignity. Of all the things I have questioned, the church's
policies on church discipline is not one of them.
>>Is the "integrity of its doctrine" that fragile? Are LDS
church members that easily "misled" that they need to be sheltered from
unapproved information?No, it's not so fragile, but not all
Church members are at the same level of doctrinal understanding. New converts,
for example, who have yet to develop a deep knowledge of the doctrine could
become confused as to what the doctrine is if the Church fails to discipline
members who are openly fighting against Church teachings. History shows that
apostasy must be checked or it becomes increasingly destructive to individuals
and the organization.That said, anyone who is excommunicated is
perfectly free to continue speaking their minds about church doctrine. They just
won't be free to represent themselves as members whose teachings line up
with official doctrine.>>...but the people being
excommunicated, in some cases, are saying that their local leaders were directed
to do so by SLC.Honest question: what evidence have they produced of
such direction from Church headquarters? I haven't seen any beyond their
own unproven claims.
"Instead of asking for a dialogue with the church, they take it to the court
of public opinion, where it's just that. An opinion."But
Ted, You speak of opinion being just an opinion. But how many times have we
heard that, at times, church leaders merely express their opinions?Church members would rely on the validity of their utterances only to find
that they were clearly wrong. And when that happens, it is classified as merely
the opinion of a fallible man.I am quite sure that the leaders are
very wise men with very good intentions and good advice. As was my grandfather.
With him, I never had any doubts as to the source of his council.The LDS are forced to accept the past council when it survives the test of
time and dismiss it when it doesn't.Until church leaders are
willing to label their words as either personal opinion or Gods words, then this
confusion will always exist.
AT: There is no conspiracy to hunt down bloggers. Two prominent bloggers who
have media attention were informed by local leaders independently about
disciplinary action. The timing is circumstantial. These cases are entirely up
to local leadership. Local leaders have authority to convene church court for
members under their stewardship. Imagine the injustice should
General Authorites be required to intervene everytime a member of sufficient
fame was disciplined. Now that would be unfair. That it happened to
coincide is circumstantial. The church has and will continue to enable its local
leadership jurisdiction when it comes to matters of apostasy, serious sin, or
whatever, no matter how "public" the case becomes. And it isn't the
church that publicizes these things.Members of the LDS faith
understand the difference between honest inquiry and advocating apostate
ideaology that runs counter to the doctrines of the restored gospel. Excommunication is not a foregone conclusion for disciplinary counsel. They
have choices in the matter and the disciplinary counsel is still undecided, so
suggesting excommunication attempts to sensationalize matters.
There is a difference between having questions about doctrine and life's
questions vs having an agenda and leading a crusade to further your own desires.
Excommunication is for the unrepentant. Some of these individuals know exactly
what they are doing, while pretending to be victims. It's called being
dishonest, which is one of their major problems.
The pic caption is wrong; it does not show temple square, but the Church Office
Building plaza.I appreciate this comment. Peggy Stack seems to be
making the disciplinary councils for Kelly/Dehlin her personal cause before the
SLT goes bankrupt and she is out of a job.
Richard B-- It was also the Devil whom was cast out along with a 1/3 of the
host. Was that a Christlike thing to do?
She did an hour long interview on NPR Radio West with Doug Fabrizio this last
week. Doug attempted multiple times to get her to respond directly to
allegations made by two bloggers who are up for church disciplinary action who
made their experience public and are attempting to suggest that there's a
conspiracy to crack down on bloggers, because their local leaders appear to have
requested disciplinary action around the same time...I thought she
did a decent job of explaining the positions of the LDS faith. It's a tough
position to be in, especially when she tries to respect the local leaders and
the membership no matter where they come from, in what is intended to be a
private and spiritual process. Doug's a good interviewer, but
you could tell he wanted to stir up a bit more controversy than she was willing
to give him. It's worth a listen, imo.
This statement is perfect.If I was part of a "club"--or even
at my employment--and I was starting to organize groups to try and change the
key parts of the company, I would most likely not be welcome there and my boss
would fire me. It's not the job of these women to tell the leaders what to
do. If she truly believes that this is the Church of Jesus Christ, then
she should very well know where inspiration must come from for the leaders.
Hint Sister: It's NOT you. It's not you.If she truly
believes that this is the true church, then she should very well know that she
does not receive revelation for the leaders of the church. She doesn't
even receive it for her local Relief Society President. There's a point
where curiosity and questioning turn into apostasy, and she is there.
What a wonderful, well-stated, pronouncement from the Church this is. It is
simple, straight forward, and is based on sound principle. The integrity of
Church doctrine, procedures, and discussions are addressed here. But more than
anything, the Church has a responsibility to protect its members from influences
and processes that are not consistent with the preservation of core testimony of
its members that are founded on faith, obedience, humility, prayer, and service.
Dissension and loss of testimony doesn't come from asking questions. It
comes from insistence upon answers being as we want them to be. Imagine if none
of us allowed ourselves to be taught by the Spirit. I emphasize
'taught'. The word means that we are willing to have the answers come
from God, even if they are different than what we want them to be. I place
myself in God's hands. And I remember this, "Whether it be by mine own
voice or by the voice of my servants, the prophets, it is the same". As for
me and my house, we will follow the prophet, and no blessing will be denied us
at the last day.
The members that are being excommunicated. We don't know all of the
reasons. We have what the excommunicated person is telling us, but, not the
reasoning or inspiration or how the leaders came to the conclusion that they
should be excommunicated.For all we know there could be other sins,
but, as people tend to do; they quickly lash out and pick an argument that the
public and newspapers would love to rally behind.My experience has
been, most people in these situations are already done with the church, but,
feel they need to cause as much pain and grief as possible while playing the
victim. Of course they're not going to say that....With that
said, how can you claim to know the church is true and sustain the leaders, when
you spend your spare time attacking them? Instead of asking for a dialogue with
the church, they take it to the court of public opinion, where it's just
that. An opinion.Thesame thing along the lines of Mormons building
bridges. Just the fact that they leave sacrament to support, shows where their
heart is. Why not invite them to church instead and build that bridge?
"First, there is no effort to tell local leaders to keep members from
blogging or discussing questions online. "The fact that this
must be clarified is scary to begin with."When it goes so far as
creating organized groups, staging public events to further a cause or creating
literature for members to share in their local congregations, the Church has to
protect the integrity of its doctrine as well as other members from being
misled."Is the "integrity of its doctrine" that fragile?
Are LDS church members that easily "misled" that they need to be
sheltered from unapproved information?The LDS church leadership is
much too controlling and protective of it's flock for my taste.
Things might be better if they followed Jesus's example in the
pre-existence. Teach them the truth, and give them their free agency to
decide.Remember, it was the devil that wanted to force people to do
things his way.
I'm not a member but this makes sense to me. Sounds reasonable. So tell me
what the problem is then?
A crystal clear statement. As usual, spot on effort from the Church and its
Public Affairs office. Interesting, too, same spokesperson who very eloquently
explained, exhorted and warned the very people drawing this attention to this
process regarding the road they were headed down.
So, this is a nice statement, but the people being excommunicated, in some
cases, are saying that their local leaders were directed to do so by SLC.
There's enough evidence counter to the statement in this article to
reasonably question whether the LDS Church representative is being truthful.Some people being ex'd, aren't trying to "change" the
Church; they're pointing out flaws.It's an interesting
atmosphere in the Church right now. I'm actually thinking, "So, when I
hit "Submit", my initials and location will be posted. There aren't
too many ATs in Elk River, MN. Wonder if this will put me on some watch list