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Fly Fisherman

Is Mormonism Dying?

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If you have absolutely nothing better to do with your time, here is a terribly written article. 

I work for the Church in software development. There are thousands of people working in Church IT with hundreds of projects - or, maybe that is just my imagination since Mormonism is dying.

Just passing it along. 

http://suindependent.com/is-mormonism-dying/

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Premise is that because only 40% of Utah are now Mormon and there are a lot of cultural Mormons that Mormonism is dying.
No, it isn't.

Mormonism was never meant to convert the entire world, so expecting exponential growth is a bad starting point.
The last days have always predicted a falling away prior to the second coming but never complete apostasy, so no death there either.

In order to believe Mormonism is dying you first have to have an accurate starting point for how the life of Mormonism has been planned to run.
Start wrong and you will arrive at the wrong conclusion.

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Jason Gottfried is the editor of the Independent (St. George), and he obviously feels all the raw satanic power of his position -- giving  him permission to repeatedly make intolerant, rude, and crude remarks about the LDS faith.  He speaks out of both sides of his mouth:  On the one hand, he claims to be taking the high road, presenting no more than the facts.  On the other, he uses one obscenity after another to describe the object of his extreme hate, Mormonism.  The anti-Mormon anger and rage is there in spades.

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Calling itself a voice for Utah is highly problematic when it appears he sees himself as part of a very limited elite here...and everywhere for that matter.

Edited by Calm
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I don't know if it's dying so much but I'd say it's getting desperate. Only in terms of leadership. In my  limited view, in my Stake, we don't have a full High Council, they only have 8 and 2 of them don't speak english very well, another attends the Catholic Church. One Bishop thinks that Naziism should be given the benefit of the doubt, I honestly feel for that ward. If i had a problem I would never go to him, never, never, never. I don't trust him. I could go on but there are men that have served twice as Bishops, twice in the Stake Presidency, etc. they seem bored. it seems that all the High Council do is give a talk and then they split, they read some conference address and say see ya later. They don't seem to train or sit in on ward council meetings. I can't remember the last time our High Councilor sat in on ward council or attended our ward, even when he's not speaking. He shows up once or twice, gives his canned talk and leaves. I know brethren who are High Priests who have never read the BOM. Over 20 years ago I had a class taught by a member of the Bishopric and he told us he doesn't read the BOM anymore because, "He knows all the stories" I saw him maybe a 2 months ago now, and just for fun I asked him where he was in his reading of the BOM he told me he doesn't read it anymore because the more you know, the more you'd be held accountable for it and so the answer is no. How did a guy like that ever become a High Priest with that attitude?  He's a guy that is still in a Bishopric and has been on the High Council a 1000 times. Like, why on God's green earth would I listen to that guy talk about spiritual things? why would I listen to someone who should know better but chooses not to?  One of the High Council plagiarizes his talks and has been for years now, I busted him and sent him an email with the links of the talks he's been ripping off and some links too on how to write a talk, he thanked me and was kissing my oonka toonka the next time he saw me, he knows i'm on to him. Is it dying? I don't know about numerically but spiritually maybe it's a slow leak. I can't do diddly about these deadhead high priests but I can do something for the Elders in my sphere of influence

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You need to combine stakes...

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3 minutes ago, Calm said:

You need to combine stakes...

we wish we could! hahahhaha! we have 1200 "active" and about 2000 inactives, but i'm trying to trim out the move outs but the clerk has this dumb idea that he won't move people out unless he has a new address, when you do find it he still won't. So, I've said screw that, i'll move them out myself and i've contacted ward clerks all over the place and different countries and said, here you go. Surprisingly, he was better than the last guy, who did nothing. I found a guy on our list who died in June of 1996:o

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2 hours ago, Duncan said:

I don't know if it's dying so much but I'd say it's getting desperate. Only in terms of leadership. In my  limited view, in my Stake, we don't have a full High Council, they only have 8 and 2 of them don't speak english very well, another attends the Catholic Church. One Bishop thinks that Naziism should be given the benefit of the doubt, I honestly feel for that ward. If i had a problem I would never go to him, never, never, never. I don't trust him. I could go on but there are men that have served twice as Bishops, twice in the Stake Presidency, etc. they seem bored. it seems that all the High Council do is give a talk and then they split, they read some conference address and say see ya later. They don't seem to train or sit in on ward council meetings. I can't remember the last time our High Councilor sat in on ward council or attended our ward, even when he's not speaking. He shows up once or twice, gives his canned talk and leaves. I know brethren who are High Priests who have never read the BOM. Over 20 years ago I had a class taught by a member of the Bishopric and he told us he doesn't read the BOM anymore because, "He knows all the stories" I saw him maybe a 2 months ago now, and just for fun I asked him where he was in his reading of the BOM he told me he doesn't read it anymore because the more you know, the more you'd be held accountable for it and so the answer is no. How did a guy like that ever become a High Priest with that attitude?  He's a guy that is still in a Bishopric and has been on the High Council a 1000 times. Like, why on God's green earth would I listen to that guy talk about spiritual things? why would I listen to someone who should know better but chooses not to?  One of the High Council plagiarizes his talks and has been for years now, I busted him and sent him an email with the links of the talks he's been ripping off and some links too on how to write a talk, he thanked me and was kissing my oonka toonka the next time he saw me, he knows i'm on to him. Is it dying? I don't know about numerically but spiritually maybe it's a slow leak. I can't do diddly about these deadhead high priests but I can do something for the Elders in my sphere of influence

The church is weak in some areas and strong in others. I would urge you not to generalize because of what is happening in your area.

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1 minute ago, The Nehor said:

Why would the ward clerk want more people in the ward. I am one and I fight tooth and nail to get names moved out. I convinced the bishop to get us a subscription to sites we can use to hunt down addresses because you almost need them to send people out.

one word and it rhymes with hazy! if I was the ward clerk, I too, would be like names be gone! and poof, we'd be smaller!

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1 minute ago, The Nehor said:

The church is weak in some areas and strong in others. I would urge you not to generalize because of what is happening in your area.

that's what I say, in my limited view, for my stake:D

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9 hours ago, The Nehor said:

Why would the ward clerk want more people in the ward. I am one and I fight tooth and nail to get names moved out. I convinced the bishop to get us a subscription to sites we can use to hunt down addresses because you almost need them to send people out.

No you don't. After doing due diligence (the nine step verification process), you can send records to Address Unknown. Just be ready to return the volley when Salt Lake sends them back after a few months when they can't find them, either! :) 

I think the Church needs to take ownership of the 2-3 million (at least) members who are not able to be located. They seem to like to send them to the last known unit, but these units don't have to keep any records for people who are verified as not being there. It's bad for numbers and morale.

We've trimmed about 100-200 memberships since I became bishop three years ago, but that's because we're assiduous in aggressively ensuring that our roster reflects reality. I also find that my ward is one of very few that actively orders records when people move in (ward leaders always get the birthdate along with the name, address, and phone number when we have move-ins). Many other wards take months to do that if we don't send them on when people move.

Once, I found an inactive member listed in our ward had been murdered by her husband in a murder suicide at the University of Utah. :( 

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This is kind of funny:

"As a bare 41.6 percent of Utahns are now active Mormons, it leads one to wonder: Is Mormonism dying?

It appears to be.

At the top of the list of reasons why this is happening is immigration to the state by people who are less religious — and in the event that they are religious, like the rest of the world they are generally not Mormon."

A top reason why Utah's population is only 41% active LDS is because non Mormons are moving into the state and that means Mormonism is dying?  So if a bunch of non-Mormons moved out of state and now Utah had 80% active Mormons would that mean Mormonism is thriving?

Yes, I agree. Terribly written. 

Edited by Rain
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Not sure what Utah state demographics would have to do with the strength of Mormonism per se. Not well thought out.

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22 minutes ago, Gray said:

Not sure what Utah state demographics would have to do with the strength of Mormonism per se. Not well thought out.

I think the idea is that since Mormonism's core is still in the intermountain west (primarily Utah and Idaho, but also Arizona and Nevada to a lesser extent), any demographic losses in these areas (market share) must denote losses in Mormonism. The influx of non-Mormons into Utah is arguably what is propping up our baptism numbers (i.e., Utah missions are the highest baptizing in the world, etc.). 

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8 minutes ago, rongo said:

I think the idea is that since Mormonism's core is still in the intermountain west (primarily Utah and Idaho, but also Arizona and Nevada to a lesser extent), any demographic losses in these areas (market share) must denote losses in Mormonism. The influx of non-Mormons into Utah is arguably what is propping up our baptism numbers (i.e., Utah missions are the highest baptizing in the world, etc.). 

I think it may be easily explained by non-members from expensive areas seeking a more affordable area to live. But, I don't live in the West, and I'm not up on Utah demographics.

Now I do think the church growth is flagging - both conversion rates and birth rates are shrinking. Maybe that's the first sign of stormy weather ahead. But since the church is still growing both in terms of raw numbers and in terms of congregations, it's very premature to pronounce the patient terminally ill.

Edited by Gray
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Utah anti-Mormons take themselves so seriously. Their self important attitude is really funny to a non-Utah Mormon.

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2 hours ago, rongo said:

No you don't. After doing due diligence (the nine step verification process), you can send records to Address Unknown. Just be ready to return the volley when Salt Lake sends them back after a few months when they can't find them, either! :) 

I think the Church needs to take ownership of the 2-3 million (at least) members who are not able to be located. They seem to like to send them to the last known unit, but these units don't have to keep any records for people who are verified as not being there. It's bad for numbers and morale.

We've trimmed about 100-200 memberships since I became bishop three years ago, but that's because we're assiduous in aggressively ensuring that our roster reflects reality. I also find that my ward is one of very few that actively orders records when people move in (ward leaders always get the birthdate along with the name, address, and phone number when we have move-ins). Many other wards take months to do that if we don't send them on when people move.

Once, I found an inactive member listed in our ward had been murdered by her husband in a murder suicide at the University of Utah. :( 

I will never understand why they send them back, is there anyone on planet earth that moves away and then 10 years later moves back to the same place they lived at before? who even does that?! There is a guy who's address is a dollar store now, so either he lives there, which I doubt, a fake address or the house he lived at was torn down years ago, but our ward clerk won't move him off as we don't have a new address for him

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2 hours ago, rongo said:

No you don't. After doing due diligence (the nine step verification process), you can send records to Address Unknown. Just be ready to return the volley when Salt Lake sends them back after a few months when they can't find them, either! :) 

I think the Church needs to take ownership of the 2-3 million (at least) members who are not able to be located. They seem to like to send them to the last known unit, but these units don't have to keep any records for people who are verified as not being there. It's bad for numbers and morale.

We've trimmed about 100-200 memberships since I became bishop three years ago, but that's because we're assiduous in aggressively ensuring that our roster reflects reality. I also find that my ward is one of very few that actively orders records when people move in (ward leaders always get the birthdate along with the name, address, and phone number when we have move-ins). Many other wards take months to do that if we don't send them on when people move.

Once, I found an inactive member listed in our ward had been murdered by her husband in a murder suicide at the University of Utah. :( 

That is what I meant by it being all but impossible. I am a clerk and I only went through that inane nine step process a few times because if you do they just send it back in a few months so why bother? If I can get an address they stay gone. I wish we were allowed to keep these lost members on the records with address unknown on them so we do not have Home and visiting teachers with bad data and missionaries knocking a door we know is wrong.

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12 hours ago, Duncan said:

one word and it rhymes with hazy! if I was the ward clerk, I too, would be like names be gone! and poof, we'd be smaller!

I have had a crazy clerk before too. It happens. ;) 

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I suspect Salt Lake waits a month or two and then uses some kind of people locating search to find out where they are. If they stay off the radar or do not have a permanent address they will probably get the old address again and send it straight back.

I do not mean to imply malice. The process is probably automated. I just think the process is stupid. If you do not trust the local leaders to know that someone is gone then the system will not work anyways.

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13 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

I have had a crazy clerk before too. It happens. ;) 

OOOOOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LAZY, it what we were going for!!! hahahahahahhaha! no cruise to the Bahamas with Pawn Stars Chumlee, but you will leave with some wonderful party gifts!

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2 minutes ago, Duncan said:

OOOOOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LAZY, it what we were going for!!! hahahahahahhaha! no cruise to the Bahamas with Pawn Stars Chumlee, but you will leave with some wonderful party gifts!

Whew, dodged a bullet. Talking to Chumlee sounds like torture.

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The gentleman says at one point:

Quote

As the LDS Church wanes, the last thing we should do is demonize its membership,

Then goes on to do just that:

Quote

which has sufficiently demonized itself. Its membership itself does not comprise bad ideas witn no evidence but rather people — oftentimes good people — who have unfortunately succumbed to bad ideas with no evidence.

Of course the last part can be said for all religions, i.e. the no (physical) evidence part.

I do not think Mormonism is dying, but I believe that the growth will be more outside the U.S. than inside. I believe that is already playing out. I also believe that it will be getting worse for all Christian based religions if I understand the prophecies about the last days correctly.

Glenn

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