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  1. Last sunday was easter, I looked forward to going to church with the family, and my daughter invited her best friend who is not a member to church. Sacrament meeting was good, one hymn was of a dirge variety - choir number was beautiful my wife taught gospel doctrine on the doctrine of atonement and comments/discussion enlivened the lesson and there was a good spirit. A few hours after getting home from church and we had taken my daughter and friend to the airport, my wife was distraught over an event at church. I asked what happened, and she said, "you didn't hear from [daughter] what happened today?" "Uh, no what happened - I thought sacrament was good". Then my wife proceeded to explain how for sunday school the regular teacher was not there this sunday, and they pulled in the full-time missionary elders last minute to teach the older youth 15 - 17y/o. The missionaries could have given a great lesson on the resurrection, the events of holy week, the atonement and salvation? But no - they chose to say they were asked on short notice and didn't have a lesson planned, so "let's just open it up to questions - ask us the hard questions you're afraid to ask!" A boy - a senior in HS was asked by a friend at school why black members of the church were not offered the same blessings of the priesthood at the same time as other members. How should we answer a question like this? the missionary started answering this question by presenting the analogy of giving a 4 year old a chainsaw. He said you don’t give them a real chainsaw because they “would probably kill themselves because they don’t know how to properly handle it.” my daughter asked if he was actually comparing black members to 4 year-olds? Elder backs off and recoils and says he didn't mean it like that. The young elder then tried another approach and went on to tell the story of Moses - how Moses first received the higher Melchizedek priesthood commandments, but when he came down the mountain, he saw that they were worshiping the golden calf, so subsequently he broke the higher law tablets, and gave them the lower commandments for the Aaronic priesthood because the Israelites were not ready. The young elder 14months of experience on the mission said that God gives the priesthood to people who he trusts and that we can always trust the prophets to do the right thing because it truly was a revelation from God [to not give blacks priesthood, temple blessings, or sealings]. Then the missionary said if you have other questions then just go read the gospel topics essays written by church scholars. Next question was asked by the bishop's son pertaining to why the same sex couples policy was walked back after 4 years. Two other boys in the class after they found out my daughter's friend was from a state in the NW teased that she must be a liberal feminist. Class then ended. Points of discussion. How can we better prepare missionaries to not miss the mark, and to better prepare for teaching opportunities? what can we do in teaching situations when classes go off the rails? Where do we go for better answers to the questions our older youth have? - youth which were inoculated early, but have lost trust in leadership? How are we training our young Elders and Sister missionaries on utilizing the gospel topics essays? Do they really read and understand them?
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