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Jeremy Runnells Excommunicated

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AMERICAN FORK, Utah -- A crowd gathered outside an LDS Church in American Fork Sunday night to show support for Jeremy Runnells, who was attending a disciplinary council that ultimately resulted in the end of his membership in the Mormon faith.

Jeremy Runnells gained prominence after writing a lengthy piece called "letter to a CES [Church Education System] director."  Earlier this year, Runnells said he was facing excommunication as a result of his writings questioning some tenets of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

On his website he stated that he was facing charges of apostasy, but claims his letter "represents Runnells' sincere attempt to obtain answers to legitimate questions and doubts through proper church leadership channels."

Runnells spoke with FOX 13 News' Lauren Steinbrecher after that disciplinary council Sunday, and he said he has "excommunicated the LDS Church" and resigned his membership.

So what's with him purportedly having "excommunicated the LDS Church?"  We he excommunicated, or did he resign?  Was he disfellowshipped, and did he then resign?

Thanks,

-Smac

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10 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Here:

So what's with him purportedly having "excommunicated the LDS Church?"  We he excommunicated, or did he resign?  Was he disfellowshipped, and did he then resign?

Thanks,

-Smac

Maybe it was misreported.

But if it's reported correctly, it sounds like he sees himself as his own ultimate authority.

Which isn't unlikely, given what else I've seen from him.

But who, having read his laundry list of recycled anti-Mormon talking points, is going to swallow the claim that it  "represents Runnells' sincere attempt to obtain answers to legitimate questions and doubts through proper church leadership channels?"

 

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13 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Here:

So what's with him purportedly having "excommunicated the LDS Church?"  We he excommunicated, or did he resign?  Was he disfellowshipped, and did he then resign?

Thanks,

-Smac

I am surprised that this is even a news story on fox. Most likely, he resigned when he knew that he was going to be excommunicated. We will need to wait a few hours to find out what happened when he posts what happened. But it must have been a slow news day if this made the local fox news.

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31 minutes ago, smac97 said:

 

So what's with him purportedly having "excommunicated the LDS Church?"  

Do we care?

I don't think I am in the mood for publicity stunts.

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This was posted on his Facebook page:

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"I want to thank each and every one of you for coming here tonight. It means a lot. It's my understanding that there's several of you who have come from out of state, so I'm really touched by that.

A decision has been made. I have excommunicated the LDS church (laughter), President Ivins, and their kangaroo court from my life. I handed my resignation to President Ivins just a few minutes ago. My membership evaporated the second that I gave President Ivins my resignation letter. I am no longer a member of this church.

After speaking with President Ivins and the High Council tonight, it became very clear that it was a kangaroo court. They refused to answer any questions that I asked them. I've asked questions over and over for the last three years, and a year and a half with the stake president. And they have not answered at least—not answered one question.

It has become very clear to me that the church does not have answers to a truth crisis. The questions that I have asked the stake president over and over for the last year and a half have been:

What errors or mistakes are there in the CES letter or on my website that I can publicly correct?

If there are no errors or mistakes, why am I being punished for seeking and sharing the truth?
What questions am I being punished for?

And he never answered any of those questions once. Yet that didn't stop him from attempting to spiritually execute me, and I find that very, very disturbing. How they're trying to take somebody's salvation while not answering their sincere, reasonable questions.

I am disgusted by the LDS Church's President Ivins attempts—multiple attempts—to place me in the same category as murderers and rapists and child molesters for simply seeking official answers to church problems.

(applause)


I have done nothing wrong. I just wanted the truth. I wanted official answers to the church essay verify problem to resolve my concerns and doubts.

For those of you who are struggling with doubts, stop doubting the doubts. Cherish your doubts. Explore your doubts. Resolve your doubts. Doubt is the beginning to knowledge and wisdom.
The only power that the church has is the power that you give them. Tonight, I took back my own power. Thank you."

It would be nice to hear the Church's side of things.  I don't believe his Stake President is the villain that Jeremy likes to portray him as.  Jeremy crossed the line from sincerely seeking answers to attacking the Church.  He has become an enemy to the Saints.  And honestly, I don't know how well equipped his SP is to answer his questions anyway.  It appears that no answers from the Church will ever be satisfactory enough for him.  He's gotten his own answers.  Somebody as bitter as he is is probably better off not being a member of the Church.    

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I'm tired of certain angry, ex-Mormons attacking my faith and getting uncontested slam dunks.

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He had already decided, iirc, that the Church was false even before he started the original form of the CES letter and was solicting ideas to include in it from exmormons.  He stated, again iirc because it is too close to lights out to start a search  tonight, that he did the letter so his kids would understand why he left the faith.

Neither of those reasons/behaviours is morally wrong and if you don't believe in the Church, they could even be morally appropriate if criticism was done accurate and solid and not just shotgun or onesided, imo.  His implying he hadn't already made up his mind or ignoring that his leaders could see for themselves his responses to others' answers and thus rationally interpret the effort to persuade him by argument as useless...that I have a problem with.

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Why would someone drive to Utah from California just to see a guy get excommunicated from the Church? What silliness.

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I'm surprised he hasn't already resigned.  I understand having doubts and questions, but I feel it's not right to try to influence other member's testimonies.  I also don't like how he tried to make money off of his letter.

Does anyone know if his wife or children are still active or not? I think this would be hard for them either way.

Edited by JulieM

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He's ruined so many people's testimonies and driven so many from the church, he doesn't belong a member of the church.

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There go 13 of his 15 minutes. I hope he finds some peace.

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3 hours ago, Calm said:

Do we care?

I don't think I am in the mood for publicity stunts.

I'm with you.   I find these events very confusing and strange.   It is obvious Runnells doesn't believe in the LDS church so why does he care if they excommunicate him?  Why did he call a press conference with John Dehlin when his disciplinary council was announced?

I don't believe in the church so if they want to excommunicate me why should I care?   I wouldn't even bother to show up for the hearing.

 

 

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2 hours ago, JulieM said:

 I understand having doubts and questions, but I feel it's not right to try to influence other member's testimonies. 

 

People are always trying to influence the testimonies of others.   Missionaries, parents, spouses, friends, random internet strangers.  I don't have an issue with that.  I just hate the attention seeking.

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Yesterday was Sunday.  Had a great day at church.  A new Young Women's presidency spoke and did a great job.  Gospel Doctrine went well; we were on lesson #14 on the small books of the Book of Mormon and what makes them so valuable.  High Priest Group was always good.  Came home, wife not well so she laid down and I stayed up and studied.  

Later in the evening I yawned a couple of times.  Events such as this make me yawn and I feel any motivation to comment on them or remark that they occurred.  It will happen again and yet people will still find the restored gospel of Jesus Christ and it will make a huge impact on their lives.  

Let's move to the next chapter and close this one.  Repentance can be a grinding process for some and it is personal. 

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I don't get these people with these  "press conferences", they aren't Wayne Gretzky getting traded or Michael Jackson at a hospital, I don't get the ego

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8 hours ago, Russell C McGregor said:

 

But who, having read his laundry list of recycled anti-Mormon talking points, is going to swallow the claim that it  "represents Runnells' sincere attempt to obtain answers to legitimate questions and doubts through proper church leadership channels?"

 

Several on this board, I'm sure.

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I got the impression he was ex'd but the church was saying he pretty much resigned when he went public with his doubts.  So definitely ex'd.  

I don't agree with how he is running a website etc.  But do understand the journey he has taken, it's pretty rough.  But unlike him, I try to keep silent and probably have less friends where it looks like he has a boatload now.  

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9 hours ago, smac97 said:

Here:

So what's with him purportedly having "excommunicated the LDS Church?"  We he excommunicated, or did he resign?  Was he disfellowshipped, and did he then resign?

Thanks,

-Smac

I don't know anything about this case, but not long ago I got news that when someone is excommunicated their names remain.  In order to get them removed, one would have to request their names be removed.  So I can see that one who is excommunicated could also claim to have excommunicated the Church from his/her life.  Plus, it seems he might be suggesting the excommunication means nothing to him.  In which case, then why the fuss? 

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16 hours ago, Russell C McGregor said:

But who, having read his laundry list of recycled anti-Mormon talking points, is going to swallow the claim that it  "represents Runnells' sincere attempt to obtain answers to legitimate questions and doubts through proper church leadership channels?"

I think unless someone looks closer into the history of why the letter was written, many believe he sincerely was asking questions for help in the beginning (and only wrote the letter after being asked to do so).  I do think he was asked to write it (iirc), and I even had been led to believe it was a sincere attempt for help.  But in one of the last discussions here about him, Calm supplied quotes and some back story that convinced me he had already stopped believing when he wrote his letter.

Runnells still portrays things differently though and many won't take the time to look up the history, so they believe him.  

As far as what's in his letter, I think there are mostly factual points.  It's his conclusions that I didn't agree with (not all of them).  It was a long time ago that I read it, and I did read some of the back and forth "debunkings" and that became tiresome.  As far as I could see, there was nothing major that was incorrect and it was nitpicking on both sides regarding things that didn't really change the content much at all.  I stopped following those exchanges after awhile.

I'm sure when he originally wrote the letter, he never imagined it would get the exposure that it has. I don't agree with Rummell's behavior when this happened.  I heard he even quit his job and tried to make a living promoting it.  That's crazy.  And, I don't like the media circus he's tried to create regarding his church court. 

I think it's a good thing that he has resigned and I do wonder why he waited this long. 

.

Edited by ALarson

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27 minutes ago, ALarson said:

I think unless someone looks closer into the history of why the letter was written, many believe he sincerely was asking questions for help in the beginning (and only wrote the letter after being asked to do so).  I do think he was asked to write it (iirc), and I even had been led to believe it was a sincere attempt for help.  But in one of the last discussions here about him, Calm supplied quotes and some back story that convinced me he had already stopped believing when he wrote his letter.

Rummels still portrays things differently though and many won't take the time to look up the history, so they believe him.  

As far as what's in his letter, I think there are mostly factual points.  It's his conclusions that I didn't agree with (not all of them).  It was a long time ago that I read it, and I did read some of the back and forth "debunkings" and that became tiresome.  As far as I could see, there was nothing major that was incorrect and it was nitpicking on both sides regarding things that didn't really change the content much at all.  I stopped following those exchanges after awhile.

I'm sure when he originally wrote the letter, he never imagined it would get the exposure that it has. I don't agree with Rummell's behavior when this happened.  I heard he even quit his job and tried to make a living promoting it.  That's crazy.  And, I don't like the media circus he's tried to create regarding his church court. 

I think it's a good thing that he has resigned and I do wonder why he waited this long. 

.

Questioning sincerity is a pretty tiresome activity.  I know because I do it, often.  It seems to me many do it.  It almost feels like we have to.  But it's really difficult to determine his sincerity when we are seeing things all after the fact of his loss of faith.  It likely started with concerns and grew over time as he learned more and more.  The issues and questions he raised, as far as my memory has it, were nothing new at all.  They were the same things many of us have thought of and read about for years.  I tend to think everyone is full of sincerity in life and yet all of us are to some degree insincere.  To define one person as lacking sincerity is judging someone based on part of who he/she is. 

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1 hour ago, stemelbow said:

I don't know anything about this case, but not long ago I got news that when someone is excommunicated their names remain.  In order to get them removed, one would have to request their names be removed.  So I can see that one who is excommunicated could also claim to have excommunicated the Church from his/her life.  Plus, it seems he might be suggesting the excommunication means nothing to him.  In which case, then why the fuss? 

When people ask for names to be removed they do remain in some way, but not in the roles or membership. A friend of mine asked for name to be removed when young, but later was baptized again and found name was still in the records  - just not as a member.  It makes sense though.

Edited by Rain

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