LDS spokeswoman discusses church discipline with radio host Doug Fabrizio

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  • Cougar Alumni Beaver, UT
    Oct. 29, 2014 7:50 a.m.

    I had a very good friend and my son go through the bishops court. From the words from my friend "If I slip and sin again, I will never go through that again."

    I personally witnessed my son's court and found it to be a kangaroo court with the executive secretary making comments and asking questions.

    I like how Jesus held his courts as he looked at the adulteress women "go and sin no more." Christ saw the sorrow in her heart.

    Sorry is this comes across negative but it is what is is.

  • kclady53 Baton Rouge, LA
    June 21, 2014 8:52 a.m.

    Ah, my dear Brahmabull, you miss my point. My opinion of John Dehlin is not the object here. Each one of us is accountable for his or her conclusions, so we must be prayerful and diligent in getting to the truth. Hence, my point is critical thinking. For example – Since the church or the leaders involved are not allowed to comment anything about the reasons for a church court (sort of like a catholic priest and confession,) the only person that can comment is the person being disciplined, and that person could say anything. For instance, he (or she) could say they are being disciplined because of a conflict in doctrine, when in reality, the person might have been called in for adultery. We would never know because the authorities in charge are bound by silence.

  • Brahmabull sandy, ut
    June 20, 2014 10:23 p.m.


    Your description of Dehlin sounds a lot like a description of Joseph Smith.

  • Brahmabull sandy, ut
    June 20, 2014 10:21 p.m.

    Cats -

    The lord decides these things? Unless he has told you and everybody else that personally it is only speculation. Until he comes and tells me that himself, he didn't decide it. Men decided it.

  • Ice Cream Sandwich provo, UT
    June 20, 2014 3:38 p.m.

    Sister Isom (a sister) speaking to the world on the church's behalf. Is that a priesthood role? Looks like Ordain Women just got their answer.

  • donn layton, UT
    June 20, 2014 2:48 p.m.

    RE: Christian church discipline. “ Warn a divisive person once, and then warn them a second time. After that, have nothing to do with them” Titus 3:10.

    “even if we or a messenger(angel) out of heaven may proclaim good news to you different from what we did proclaim to you—anathema let him be!”(Galatians 1:8-9). i.e…,

    The Council of Constantinople .. in 453 CE posthumously excommunicated Origen because He believed in the Platonic pre-existence and transmigration of souls

  • keepamericafree salt lake, UT
    June 20, 2014 1:12 p.m.

    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 YOU want!

  • mothernut Spring, TX
    June 20, 2014 1:02 p.m.

    If the lady doesn't like it, let her leave, and leave the church alone. This is about how God wants his church ran on earth not how she wants it. If you believe in a living Prophet and how he acts for God on this earth at this time then you are a follower. If you don't than you are a non believer, but don't tell me that I am wrong, don't tell me that the church has to get with the times, this is not about how the world sees it, it's about God and his love for us.

  • GregBB Houston, TX
    June 20, 2014 11:52 a.m.

    I don't believe that it is up to any man or woman to instruct God. Cultural/Non-doctrinal issues are open for discussion but I don't believe that we can or should seek to turn back God's natural laws in the matter of the Priesthood, any more than we should in the matter of gay marriage or gays holding the Priesthood. Shall we become a church whose doctrine is set by member votes or by God?

  • InspectorC Wasatch Front, UT
    June 20, 2014 10:31 a.m.

    @ RedWinds 7:57 a.m. ----

    You are at least the second poster on this board to mention that Dehlin's Disciplinary Council has been delayed. (I believe it was originally scheduled to be held last evening??)

    I have never heard this updated info (regarding a postponement), and am wondering where you heard that, or what is your confirmed source??

    Can RedWings (or anyone else) provide more information... and a source?? Thanks!

  • BobDog Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2014 8:55 a.m.

    It is time to recalibrate our minds. As a member in good standing of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, I may hold a personal opinion or question concerning Church doctrine. Depending on the nature of my opinion or question, I may not be able to truthfully obtain a temple recommend, but I will not be excommunicated. I may express my opinion or question in the context of a gospel discussion during Sunday meetings, during lunch conversations with friends, and over the dinner table with family. I will not be excommunicated. I may write on a blog operated by others to express my doubts or questions. I will not be excommunicated.

    But if I call and hold a press conference to express my doubts or questions as if they were the truth, if I set up a website calling upon the Church to change its doctrine and expressing my opinion or doubt as truth, if I reach out to the press and send opinion pieces to press outlets with the aim of putting pressure on the Church and holding the actions of Church leaders to derision, I likely will be excommunicated or disfellowshipped.

  • raybies Layton, UT
    June 20, 2014 8:37 a.m.

    Doug Fabrizio is probably my favorite journalist. He is very smart, he asks great questions, and is respectful of his guests.

    I felt he was trying to stir up a controversy, but then the day prior he'd spent time with Kelly and Dehlin, who have been on his show a number of times prior to their interview to espouse their doctrinal doubts.

    I think the church PR department has a really tough job, and that there is an ongoing evolution as to what is and is not acceptable online behavior. This is not just a Church thing, it's a societal challenge. People are using social media in ways that expose their ideas to people who might be damaged by false representation which has resulted in disciplinary actions taken by employers, for example.

    The church advocates members ask questions, and find answers. It's the crux of the LDS faith, and why I believe it. This has not changed. A careful examination of the facts shows that the leadership and (perhaps a bit slower, but still) local leaders are aware of these issues and attempting to be fair.

    June 20, 2014 7:57 a.m.

    Goddess Divine -

    Neither Dehlin or Kelly are being brought bedore disciplinary council for having doubts. It is their actions in leasding others into doubt and opposition to church teachings that is the problem. Ms Kelly has openly deifed church leaders and is actively using the media in an attempt to shame the church into changin doctrine.

    It is likely the delay in Dehlin's council to have time for him to meet with his area seventy is an attempt ot better understand his motivs and position. That is a reasonable approach. Kelly, on the other hand, is actively promoting opposition to the Prophet, which is apostacy...

  • Goddess Divine Orem, UT
    June 19, 2014 11:49 p.m.

    Joh Dehlin only expresses his personal opinion and doubts in his website. He doesn't encourage people to have the same doubts he has. He doesn't tell people to become inactive. There is no reason to threaten John with ex-communication. It is unfair. " the church teaches there must be opposition in all things.". I suppose this is the reason people have doubts about their religion, everyone has doubts, not only Mormons. I Haven't heard of any other church that ex-communicate their members because they have doubts.

    We live in a free society and have the right to express our doubts and feelings, even though others may not agree with us.

  • kclady53 Baton Rouge, LA
    June 19, 2014 9:09 p.m.

    As Ms. Isom says "...the church is not going to publicly discuss private matters of faith between a specific church member, and that member's local leader and God," Isom said. "That decision, that process remains confidential, and we'll respect that."

    This is boys and girls...put on your thinking caps because if you read this very carefully you will pick up on one of John Dehlin's favorite tricks. The only way this info on Church discipline could have gotten out was from John Dehlin himself. Publicity = Money, Attention, and in some cases, Sympathy. He a narcissistic manipulator. Be smart. Don't fall for anything this man says.

  • Mr. Owl Layton, UT
    June 19, 2014 5:36 p.m.

    @ slowdrive and RedWings RE: "One true church"

    I recommend you review Doctrine & Convenants Section 1, especially verse 30:

    "And also those to whom these commandments were given, might have power to lay the foundation of this church, and to bring it forth out of obscurity and out of darkness, the only true and living church upon the face of the whole earth, with which I, the Lord, am well pleased, speaking unto the church collectively and not individually—"

    If the Lord declares it, and it's scripture as well, I see no problem in stating the same.

  • KiloCharlie7 Orem, UT
    June 19, 2014 4:40 p.m.

    @Craig Clark Actually, you're completely wrong on the term excommunication and mostly wrong on disfellowship. Both words are old words that are largely unused in common speech today, but their meanings are quite important to understand. Excommunication does not refer to communication at all, but rather it refers to the Christian rite of communion or as the LDS refer to it the Sacrament. Excommunication means to have your privilege to the rite of communion revoked (as opposed to simply suspended). While disfellowship in this case is being used to indicate that ones privilege of participation has been limited. Fellowship means to be part of a group or community. You'd be right in the fact that disfellowship means to be placed outside the participating group, but it does not mean to be unfriendly towards.

  • InspectorC Wasatch Front, UT
    June 19, 2014 4:21 p.m.

    TO: PRESIDENT CAMACHO @ 10:48 A.M. ---

    You said: "Then why has John Dehlin's excommunication been put on hold?"

    You are being rather presumptuous to call the current process his "excommunication".

    Did you **actually** mean that his "Disciplinary Council" has been put on hold??

    And what is your source for that news? Just curious if you can provide a confirmed reference for that status (for the delay of Brother Dehlin's Disciplinary Council)??

    (Or if anyone else has heard that news, feel free to reply.) Thanks.

  • panamadesnews Lindon, UT
    June 19, 2014 1:15 p.m.

    rickdoctor, Chandler, AZ:

    Very thoughtful post - I agree with all of your thoughts. Thank you

  • clh hillsboro , OR
    June 19, 2014 1:02 p.m.

    Just seems like to me that you either believe the Prophet is the spokesman for God or he is not. If you believe that it is wrong that women cannot hold the priesthood then you believe the prophet is not a spokesman for God, therefore he is not a true prophet. If he is not a true prophet then the church is not true and so why stay in it. It is a false church.

    If you believe he is a spokesman for God, then you honor what he says because it was the Lord wants. Who are we to question the Lord? We may not understand why the Lord has it this way, but he does and we move on and know we will understand in the hear after.

    So I just don't understand this group that is fighting this. It just seems like to me they do not have a testimony of the prophet so they are fighting just to make a point. If you don't like it find a church that shares your same belief and allow other churches to have their own beliefs.

  • kimnprovo Orem, UT
    June 19, 2014 11:35 a.m.

    slowdive, I wanted to point out that in the LDS religion we believe all will go to Heaven save a very small amount. It is truly about learning and progressing. It's about growth.

  • goosehuntr Tooele, UT
    June 19, 2014 11:14 a.m.

    I have been in many disciplinary counsels unfortunately... I can say in my experience alone, that LOVE for the member in question has always prevailed. Two identical situations can result in two different outcomes depending on what is revealed as best to help the member in question to heal. Sometimes excommunication will bring the member home... sometimes it is disfellowshipment or lesser discipline that will correct the behavior and lead to repentance. Those meetings have been some of the most spiritually powerful meeting I have ever been involved in, that when you walk out you cannot deny that God is truly in charge, and loves the individual... one by one. He is in the details of everyones life.

    June 19, 2014 9:49 a.m.


    I appreciate your insights.

    I have noticed a shift away from the "one true church" idea aomg LDS leaders as well. We (LDS) do not have a monopoly on access to God. Do I believe that certain key tenets were restored in 1830? Yes, I do. Does that make me better than my non-LDS neighbor? No. God loves all His children - even the ones who don't believe in Him. In the end we will find out the ultimate Truth. Until then, practicing my religion has made me a better person, and I thank God for that.

    Time will tell if the OW movement will matter. I do not see it happening, though. But again, I have served with many strong women in leadership roles in the Church, and I see that continuing and growing.

    The largest women's organization - The Relief Society - was formed by the LDS Prophet in the 1840s. Say a lot to me about the value of women to the Church....

  • swn83 Taipei, 00
    June 19, 2014 9:46 a.m.

    Sad. I hoped for some real answers, not digested PR gobble that I should have expected.

  • rickdoctor Chandler, AZ
    June 18, 2014 8:54 p.m.

    Changes are inevitable, that's the way it works. The LDS Church is a 'baby church', having existed for only 184 years. Many changes have occurred during those 184 years. Many more will happen in the next 184, if the second coming does not pre-empt those, but then who can say what will occur during the 1000 years of Christ's rule? Priesthood, miracles, knowledge - peace on the earth will be an amazing change, so who can tell what will happen when the hearts of most of the people are kind and loving, instead of the baser human motivations. We will all be more open to what Jesus has said and will say, and that will exclude so many people trying to put words in His mouth that he never said. And we will stop trying to tell GOD what to do -- we are so good at that. Remember, 1000 years. Will our hearts be ready for Christ giving us the 'real deal' exponentially expanded...we are so petty with our arguments. We will look back and call ourselves very silly indeed!

  • Avenue Vernal, UT
    June 18, 2014 6:47 p.m.

    @Craig Clark
    "I don’t know what her motives are but I don’t see how she’s doing harm to anyone."

    Kate Kelly is an apostate who is trying to lead members away from the Church's standards. She is obviously doing plenty of harm.

  • Frozen Fractals Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2014 4:12 p.m.

    " I also don't believe men will ever be able to have babies. "

    There are certain anatomical features you need for a fetus to develop; there's nothing that inherently requires male anatomy to have the priesthood.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    June 18, 2014 3:51 p.m.


    "....Kelly is only doing it to cause trouble--not because she is hurt...."

    I don’t know what her motives are but I don’t see how she’s doing harm to anyone. Exposure to differing viewpoints is something a free society allows.

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    June 18, 2014 3:23 p.m.

    The Lord makes these decisions--not men or women. I don't believe women have any need or reason to have the priesthood. I also don't believe men will ever be able to have babies. God is the best assignor or responsibilities and he as made this clear. This whole discussion is so unproductive.

    Kelly is only doing it to cause trouble--not because she is hurt. I don't believe very many people are fooled.

  • slowdive Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2014 12:41 p.m.

    redwing thx for your thoughts. yes, personal inspiration - whether via your H Ghost, or via my Sunday freshies at Alta - this is the way to go..... ie, again, IMO, one does not nec need to have a mediated experience w the Divine (variously interpreted). (see W James Varieties of Religious Exp) where things go swervy is when any one Org R claims to have sole (soul) access to a Yellow Brick Road to God -- and that the only way to get to Heaven is to jump on that particular Eden Express (all religions can't all be right, right?)... i think what we're seeing w the Ordain Women movement is an example of a church that is not quite keeping up with the times. more and more women are roaring, women who have been the most oppressed throughout history (still are: acid to face in afghan, kidnapped in nigeria, etc). in comparison, pope francis is doing much to reduce his church's emphasis on Truth Claims and focusing instead on acts of kindness, openness, acceptance, that there is still a lot that is Not Known. maybe the LDS church will follow the lead of the Catholics.

  • maclouie Falconer, NY
    June 18, 2014 12:21 p.m.

    @President Camacho

    Don't know why JD excommunication is on hold. Your opinion and my opinion probably differ here. However, 1890 Manifesto had nothing to do with public opinion but with confiscation and destruction of the Church by the U.S. Government.

  • Blue AZ Cougar Chandler, AZ
    June 18, 2014 12:20 p.m.

    I actually think Isom didn't handle that question very well, as there are passages in the Bible, D&C, and Articles of Faith that state men are to hold the offices of the priesthood. That being said, I wouldn't have a problem if President Monson received a revelation allowing women to receive the priesthood. It could very well be that at some point in the future, the world will be so wicked that we could benefit from having additional priesthood holders. I don't really see that happening (just my own view), but it also wouldn't bother me. What DOES bother me is the way Kate Kelly is seeking the change. It's one thing to ask a question and have a personal belief that women should hold the priesthood, quite another to start a movement and approach the subject in a demanding way. That's just not the way change is effected in Christ's church.

    June 18, 2014 11:57 a.m.


    Thanks for your comment and clarification...

    From my perspective, I belive that we do have access to God through personal revelation and the Holy Ghost. I have had experinces where I have been prompted and led to certain decisions in my life.

    I have served with many strong-minded women in the church. In our council, the women who attend have their ideas and opinions sought by our bishop. My wife served as a Relief Society President and basically became our bishop's main source of counsel and ideas.

    My priesthood is given to me to bless others. It is not a status thing. I don't get to pick a better pew or anything becasue I am an elder. This isn't an equal rights issue. To reduce the issue to that shows me that Ms. Kelly really doesn't understand the priesthood or the church. Her argument is self-centered, when priesthood duty is centered on others.

  • Cheesecake Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2014 11:53 a.m.

    I actually really enjoyed all of the interviews, and Doug did an excellent job. He asked great questions, and I feel he was equally direct with all 3 (technically four, Joanna Brooks) of them. I find the following interesting though:

    What do you have to support your position?

    Kelly: Articles of faith (we believe that he will yet reveal...), Doctrine and Covenants (Emma Smith asked Joseph to pray about something and Section 89 was the result?), Official Declaration 2 (blacks getting the priesthood).

    Isom: There's nothing in the scriptures saying that women cannot hold the priesthood. (paraphrasing of course), but that is how we currently understand it.

  • President Camacho SLC, UT
    June 18, 2014 10:48 a.m.

    "I don't think The Lord cares much for the court of public opinion..."

    Then why has John Dehlin's excommunication been put on hold? What about the 1890 Manifesto? Seems to me like he cares more than you think.

  • slowdive Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2014 10:48 a.m.

    you've got to understand that from my a-religious, relativistic perspective no one has a direct pipeline to God, however understood/defined. (i happen to think the Eastern Traditions, having to do w Mind/Consciousness are closer to the truth of the matter.)
    i think it was hillel who might have put it best (paraphrasing): all religions preach the Golden Rule; all else is but commentary (ie, opinion not fact; one person's burning in the bosom another's heartburn) also, in case you missed it, here is Kate Kelly in her own words describing how things have shaken out.
    google her opinion piece in The Guardian
    "I may be excommunicated from my church for asking for equal rights" (June 16)
    i think the Church would benefit from more strong-minded women----those asking Qs, pushing boundaries----of the Mormon Expositor kind. mormom women should be loud and proud like their feminist forebearers, again, IMO, only n=1.

  • Blue AZ Cougar Chandler, AZ
    June 18, 2014 10:47 a.m.

    @Craig Clark
    I understand your point -- the labels are somewhat archaic. Not sure if you're LDS or not, but one interesting thing about church discipline is that it's a very private thing. I served as an executive secretary to our local bishop for a while, and was often surprised when (in the privacy of a bishopric meeting) it came up that someone in the ward could not fill a particular role because he/she was currently under church discipline (either disfellowshipped or excommunicated). I was surprised because I had no previous knowledge of the matter, even during my role as the bishop's secretary and my involvement in all the weekly bishopric meetings and ward council meetings. So my point is that, yes, these are somewhat archaic words, but it's important to understand that those individuals are not shut out by the general populace of the church and those matters are not discussed publicly by the church as those matters are very private.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    June 18, 2014 10:25 a.m.

    "....In the 51-minute interview, Isom also emphasized the central role of love...."

    If it’s done in love, why continue using terms like excommunicate and disfellowship? Excommunicate implies that you no longer speak to them. Disfellowship sounds like you are no longer to be friendly towards them. Those archaic terms belong to another era and need to be retired.

  • Blue AZ Cougar Chandler, AZ
    June 18, 2014 10:23 a.m.

    I thought Ally Isom did a great job fielding the various questions and had a lot of great responses to Fabrizio's questions. One thing she pointed out that I think is important to remember is that excommunication is not the starting point of church discipline, and it's not a foregone conclusion that that will be the outcome of these disciplinary counsels. Furthermore, excommunication is not the same thing as expulsion -- the intent is not to kick the person out of the church, and at no time is the person asked to not attend church meetings. There are certain things the individual is asked not to do while at church meetings, but this is not a matter of kicking out religious dissidents.

    June 18, 2014 10:20 a.m.


    The questions were answered by Elder Oaks in the last Conference.

    Kate Kelly is not asking questions - she is staging media publicity stunts to shame the Church into agreeing with her. That is grounds for disclipline. Why immediately go to the NY Times when the Disciplinary Council letter was received?

    I don't think The Lord cares much for the court of public opinion...

  • slowdive Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2014 8:22 a.m.

    have to say Sister Isom was put in a tough spot by the Brethren but, to my ear, quoted way too much Bible and Verse-type language ---- felt like i was a Mia Maid being a bit talked down to (platitudes). the Ordain Women movement is asking serious Qs that should be addressed, yes, seriously. it has been good to see the Church admit to some of errors of their past ways via heavily-footnoted ( = at least a veneer of sophistication) repositioning statements (on Polygamy, Blacks and the Priesthood, DNA research, etc) on that said, all im reminded of is what happened in the early 1990s. the september 6. except nowadays with the internet people have access to so much more info, exposing the stickier/trickier elements of LDS origins. reverting back to a default of excommunication likely won't help matters. more mormon kids will likely join the ranks of the Nones -- deciding Org R is not for them. just my jack mormon 0.02c.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    June 17, 2014 11:19 p.m.

    This has to be the first and only time Doug Fabrizio has been described as an attack dog. Only twice did he push very hard: once asking where he could find a doctrinal prohibition against female priesthood; once when he asked for the church's definition of a public conversation. Sister Isom ducked both very simple questions. The worst, however was her leaving the very false impression that discussions about controversial issues are welcome in church. The PR department with nothing to hide wouldn't take on-air questions, a standard feature of thus show.

  • I M LDS 2 Provo, UT
    June 17, 2014 10:29 p.m.

    IMHO, Sister Isom came across very poorly. I was quite disappointed.

  • michael.jensen369 Lethbridge, 00
    June 17, 2014 7:46 p.m.

    You just gotta love journalists with that attack-dog approach. Sister Isom did a great job IMO.