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Abulafia

Mormon Leaks document on handling Child Abuse

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2 minutes ago, Storm Rider said:

It is almost too laughable to label an individual with credibility "beyond reproach" stealing documents that are clearly marked confidential and not for the public.  Really, to repeat it is got me rolling on the floor.

Do you honestly think that exposing what one considers to be immoral behavior by a large institution disqualifies someone from being beyond reproach? 

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1 minute ago, hope_for_things said:

The image of the church is everything.  This is God's institution after all.  The justification for protecting this image at all costs is part of the theology.  You should be willing to lose your life for the cause.  Temple rituals reinforce this value.  If people are willing to lose their life to uphold the cause of "righteousness" then they will be willing to lie, cheat, cover-up, whatever it takes, to support the church.  

Ah, the voice of reason and objectivity. Really??? This is what you think LDS actually think? Oh, please. 

I disagree with Smac on this - if a missionary is guilty of morality then yank his butt out of the mission and send him home to face whatever legal problems that come. If any other individual is involved then they should suffer the same punishment.

The actions of individuals should never be viewed as harming the reputation or image of the Church. The actions of individuals are simply the actions of individuals. 

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13 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Laws vary from state to state.  Production of child pornography, however, is criminalized pretty much everywhere.  So is possessing it.  So the missionary could face a felony for having received the images of the nude 15-year old girl, and the girl could face felony charges for taking and sending the photos.

It's one person or a handful of persons in the Missionary Department that is reluctant.  And the reluctance is understandable.  If this elder were your son, wouldn't you be a bit reluctant in coming clean?  Particularly if coming clean meant implicating a 15-year old girl for her felony?

KM is the legal voice.  But neither KM nor the Missionary Department would, I think, have had the final say.

 

There are two 15-year-olds in the story: the first is the one he "sexted" with. Since this happened six months before his mission (at the latest October 2012), the missionary would have been at least 18 at the time of the incident (missionary age was 19 until October 2012). So, sexting with an adult is probably not going to result in charges for a minor. The other 15-year-old is in the mission field, so it's an adult (19 years old at least) and a 15-year-old, and going home wouldn't affect anything, either. Wouldn't the mission president be required to report this since it happened locally? 

 

 

Edited by jkwilliams

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1 minute ago, Storm Rider said:

Ah, the voice of reason and objectivity. Really??? This is what you think LDS actually think? Oh, please. 

I disagree with Smac on this - if a missionary is guilty of morality then yank his butt out of the mission and send him home to face whatever legal problems that come. If any other individual is involved then they should suffer the same punishment.

The actions of individuals should never be viewed as harming the reputation or image of the Church. The actions of individuals are simply the actions of individuals. 

Its explicitly in the theology of the church, and yes, I think many church members not only think this way but practice this teaching and take it very seriously.  I know I took those words about what I would need to sacrifice very seriously as a conservative orthodox member.  Are you honestly suggesting that people don't take those words seriously and that they wouldn't be willing to do things that might otherwise seem questionable, to support the church and what they view as righteousness?  

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2 hours ago, HappyJackWagon said:

I hear you saying that we really don't have enough info from this leak to make a conclusion about whether or not the church handled this well/correctly. Am I reading you right?

Yes.  This document tells us very little.  The document covers incidents from August 22, 2012 to October 30, 2012, but the report was apparently generated on October 31, 2012 (all the notes in the "Status/Resolution" column are dated October 31).  The item in question, involving an elder confessing to touching  15-year old girl, has an "Invest[igation] Begun" date of October 30, 2012.  So this issue was what, 24 hours old, more or less, as of the time the document was created?  And the document's summary of this issue is about 90 words long.

So yes, a 90-word summary of an issue discovered and investigated only 24 hours or so before the creation of that summary is not a clear indicator of how this issue was handled by the Church.

Quote

If that's the case, at what point does the church have a responsibility to address these issues to the membership?

Issues involving an 18-year old young man receiving nude photos from a 15-year old girl?  Issues that implicate felony charges against both of them?  Issues that need to be addressed by law enforcement?

I don't think the Church has a responsibility to address these issues with the membership.  

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Do they have a responsibility to church membership to explain the process and the decision for how these cases were handled?

No, I don't think so.

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It's possible they could be exonerated, but it's also possible they could be seen as mishandling abuse accusations.

Particularly when gainsayers and faultfinders are only too happy to read a 90-word summary and assume the worst.

Reasonable people, on the other hand, recognize that these issues are very complex and difficult enough in the first instance.  Publicizing and sensationalizing them doesn't really help.

Law enforcement needs to be involved, yes.  Ecclesiastical discipline needs to be imposed where deemed appropriate by those in authority.  But publishing salacious stories involving minors doing stupid and criminal things is likely to do far more harm than good.

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Is there a point at which you would expect to have it addressed by the church in greater detail or are you comfortable with the "we don't know enough to judge" approach indefinitely?

"Addressed by the church in greater detail" being the operative wording.

Yes, I want these things addressed by the Church (within the constraints of the law, and pursuant to D&C 134:10).  But no, I don't want these things specifically published for public consumption.  Inciting mobocratic rage is not a healthy way to approach issues as complex and difficult as this.

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It seems they could address without breaking confidences or naming names.

Sure.  This happens all the time.  It just doesn't usually does not involve gratuitous public disclosure of such things.

Do you have any idea how often prosecutors review cases involving allegations of abuse?  Do you think prosecutors should regularly and uniformly open up their files for public review and consumption?  Any and all allegations, unvetted or not, uncorroborated or not, could all be thrown out there and published online.  Do you think that should happen?

Thanks,

-Smac

Edited by smac97
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48 minutes ago, lostindc said:

I agree that the leak is fairly limited, but the leak is enough to add fuel to an already big fire.  

That is probably why Mr. McKnight leaked it.  It's not about information per se.  It's about using carefully-selected bits of information to foment ill will against the Church.

Quote

To consider excommunicating Sam Young for his actions of wanting to radically change the process of worthiness interviews for the sake of the wellness of youth, but then we now read stuff like this latest leak, it's not a stretch to claim that priorities are really messed at Church HQ right now.  

Apples and oranges.

And you recognize that the leaked document is six years old, right?  So juxtaposting this document with Sam Young is rather inapt.

Quote

If I were a writer, I would jump at the opportunity to discuss the latest leaks and the differences in approach for potential offenders compared to how the leadership handled Sam Young.

Again, apples and oranges.

-Smac

Edited by smac97
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2 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Yes.  This document tells us very little.  The document covers incidents from August 22, 2012 to October 30, 2012, but the report was apparently generated on October 31, 2012 (all the notes in the "Status/Resolution" column are dated October 31.  The item in question, involving an elder confessing to touching  15-year old girl, has an "Invest[igation] Begun" date of October 30, 2012.  So this issue was what, 24 hours old, more or less, as of the time the document was created?  And the document's summary of this issue is about 90 words long.

So yes, a 90-word summary of an issue discovered and investigated only 24 hours or so before the creation of that summary is not a clear indicator of how this issue was handled by the Church.

I think you have to be careful about this. The "investigation" is KM's not the church's, and it summarizes church actions and KM recommendations. As many people have said here over the years, a disciplinary council is not involved in investigation, as the church does not have or employ those kinds of resources. A disciplinary council happens when someone admits or is accused of wrongdoing. In the cases noted, only a few mention the dates. The time between the "investigation" and "status/resolution" reflects the time KM spend looking into the matter.

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4 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Yes.  This document tells us very little.  The document covers incidents from August 22, 2012 to October 30, 2012, but the report was apparently generated on October 31, 2012 (all the notes in the "Status/Resolution" column are dated October 31.  The item in question, involving an elder confessing to touching  15-year old girl, has an "Invest[igation] Begun" date of October 30, 2012.  So this issue was what, 24 hours old, more or less, as of the time the document was created?  And the document's summary of this issue is about 90 words long.

So yes, a 90-word summary of an issue discovered and investigated only 24 hours or so before the creation of that summary is not a clear indicator of how this issue was handled by the Church.

Issues involving an 18-year old young man receiving nude photos from a 15-year old girl?  Issues that implicate felony charges against both of them?  Issues that need to be addressed by law enforcement?

I don't think the Church has a responsibility to address these issues with the membership.  

No, I don't think so.

Particularly when gainsayers and faultfinders are only too happy to read a 90-word summary and assume the worst.

Reasonable people, on the other hand, recognize that these issues are very complex and difficult enough in the first instance.  Publicizing and sensationalizing them doesn't really help.

Law enforcement needs to be involved, yes.  Ecclesiastical discipline needs to be imposed where deemed appropriate by those in authority.  But publishing salacious stories involving minors doing stupid and criminal things is likely to do far more harm than good.

"Addressed by the church in greater detail" being the operative wording.

Yes, I want these things addressed by the Church (within the constraints of the law, and pursuant to D&C 134:10).  But no, I don't want these things specifically published for public consumption.  Inciting mobocratic rage is not a healthy way to approach issues as complex and difficult as this.

Sure.  This happens all the time.  It just doesn't usually does not involve gratuitous public disclosure of such things.

Do you have any idea how often prosecutors review cases involving allegations of abuse?  Do you think prosecutors should regularly and uniformly open up their files for public review and consumption?  Any and all allegations, unvetted or not, uncorroborated or not, could all be thrown out there and published online.  Do you think that should happen?

Thanks,

-Smac

Thanks for answering.

IMO the church has a responsibility to explain the way it handles these situations. Everyone agrees that abuse is bad, so that's not really the issue. The issue they should address is the institutional response. What are the policies that direct institutional action/inaction? How and why were these policies developed? The immoral, abusive behavior is bad enough, but the mishandling of the abuse is also bad. The church should address it. Church members deserve to know how the church handles accusations of abuse, abusers, and the victims of abuse.

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4 minutes ago, smac97 said:

That is probably why Mr. McKnight leaked it.  It's not about information per se.  It's about using carefully-selected bits of information to foment ill will against the Church.

Apples and oranges.

And you recognize that the leaked document is six years old, right?  So juxtaposting this document with Sam Young is rather inapt.

Again, apples and oranges.

So, you're suggesting that MormonLeaks "carefully selected" this out of some larger trove of information they were given? On what basis can you say that? My assumption (I'll have to ask Ryan) is that, if they had more, they would have published it. 

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1 hour ago, smac97 said:

The Church's concern (or lack thereof) for victims of abuse is not reasonably inferred from a single document purportedly from a law firm working for the Church.  A law firm is going to evaluate legal issues, and would probably not be involved in counseling / pastoral care.  Moreover, the document is a spreadsheet, and is therefore very truncated and cursory.

Thanks,

-Smac

Right. A couple sentences in a box on a spread sheet is not going to have all the facts and details of everything that was done and said in each instance. 

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8 hours ago, Abulafia said:

Just putting this in a separate thread to the Denson one. 

I haven't read it properly yet, but felt it needed it's own thread.

Looks like a fairly early snapshot of the department's legal guidance-seeking process (their lawyers should set them straight); certainly too early to draw harsh conclusions about the Church's ethics. Not sure what the actual value there is in leaking these, any intentions one way or the other aside.

Edited by CV75
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12 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

There are two 15-year-olds in the story: the first is the one he "sexted" with.

And that is the one the one that likely implicates more serious criminal charges.

12 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

Since this happened six months before his mission (at the latest October 2012), the missionary would have been at least 18 at the time of the incident (missionary age was 19 until October 2012).

How do you know this happened six months before his mission?  All it says is that it happened "prior to his mission," which could put his age at at 17, or 16, or 15, etc. 

Am I missing something? 

12 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

So, sexting with an adult is probably not going to result in charges for a minor.

Producing child pornography (nude selfies) might ("The girl sent him nude photos").

12 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

The other 15-year-old is in the mission field, so it's an adult (19 years old at least)

He could have still been 18.  But 18 is an adult anyway.

12 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

and a 15-year-old, and going home wouldn't affect anything, either.

There are "Romeo and Juliet" laws in the U.S. that  "address the issue of consensual sex between teens and young adults."  According to the link, though, none of them allow contact with a 15-year-old.

In any event, we don't know what he did as a missionary ("kissing and some touching with a 15 year old girl in the mission field").  That may or may not be criminal, but that plus the pre-mission misconduct make continued service impratical.  That is KM's point.

12 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

Wouldn't the mission president be required to report this since it happened locally? 

I'm not sure.  Priest/penitent privilege could apply, particularly since the information apparently came from a "penitent" ("the elder also recently confessed...").

The interchange between mandatory disclosure laws and priest/penitent privilege varies by jurisdiction.

Thanks,

-Smac

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1 minute ago, JAHS said:

Right. A couple sentences in a box on a spread sheet is not going to have all the facts and details of everything that was done and said in each instance. 

Obviously, but what's there is certainly interesting ¿no ve?

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1 hour ago, smac97 said:

The Church's concern (or lack thereof) for victims of abuse is not reasonably inferred from a single document purportedly from a law firm working for the Church.  A law firm is going to evaluate legal issues, and would probably not be involved in counseling / pastoral care.  Moreover, the document is a spreadsheet, and is therefore very truncated and cursory.

Thanks,

-Smac

Neither is the Church's ethics in handling these questions and the incidents that gave rise to them, legally or ecclesiastically.

Edited by CV75
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1 minute ago, jkwilliams said:

Obviously, but what's there is certainly interesting ¿no ve?

Not to me, but enjoy!

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6 minutes ago, smac97 said:

That is probably why Mr. McKnight leaked it.  It's not about information per se.  It's about using carefully-selected bits of information to foment ill will against the Church.

Apples and oranges.

And you recognize that the leaked document is six years old, right?  So juxtaposting this document with Sam Young is rather inapt.

Again, apples and oranges.

-Smac

I'm curious if you hold the same negative attitude towards whistleblowers in the catholic scandal. Some information is damaging and makes the church look bad. That doesn't mean the information shouldn't be released.

As church members we know very little about the operations of the church at the highest levels. As a general rule I think members simply trust leaders to do the right thing. If there is a possibility that things aren't being handled correctly, I think membership has a right to know. It's the difference between following with eyes wide open or following in ignorance. I don't see the downside of more information whereas you seem to think any negative information is shared for the sole purpose of fomenting ill will against the church. It's a vastly different approach.

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Just now, smac97 said:

And that is the one the one that likely implicates more serious criminal charges.

How do you know this happened six months before his mission?  All it says is that it happened "prior to his mission," which could put his age at at 17, or 16, or 15, etc. 

Am I missing something? 

Producing child pornography (nude selfies) might ("The girl sent him nude photos").

He could have still been 18.  But 18 is an adult anyway.

There are "Romeo and Juliet" laws in the U.S. that  "address the issue of consensual sex between teens and young adults."  According to the link, though, none of them allow contact with a 15-year-old.

In any event, we don't know what he did as a missionary ("kissing and some touching with a 15 year old girl in the mission field").  That may or may not be criminal, but that plus the pre-mission misconduct make continued service impratical.  That is KM's point.

I'm not sure.  Priest/penitent privilege could apply, particularly since the information apparently came from a "penitent" ("the elder also recently confessed...").

The interchange between mandatory disclosure laws and priest/penitent privilege varies by jurisdiction.

You're right about the 6 months. My mistake. 

Either way, I agree with you that this is a summary intended to address legal issues, not ecclesiastical issues. But please stop reading "hostility" into my comments. Not helpful.

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8 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:
Quote

Yes.  This document tells us very little.  The document covers incidents from August 22, 2012 to October 30, 2012, but the report was apparently generated on October 31, 2012 (all the notes in the "Status/Resolution" column are dated October 31.  The item in question, involving an elder confessing to touching  15-year old girl, has an "Invest[igation] Begun" date of October 30, 2012.  So this issue was what, 24 hours old, more or less, as of the time the document was created?  And the document's summary of this issue is about 90 words long.

So yes, a 90-word summary of an issue discovered and investigated only 24 hours or so before the creation of that summary is not a clear indicator of how this issue was handled by the Church.

I think you have to be careful about this. The "investigation" is KM's not the church's, and it summarizes church actions and KM recommendations.

KM is acting as an agent of the Church, as its legal representative.  So any "investigation" by KM would be for the benefit of the Church, and was almost certainly transmitted to the Church.  Again, KM is the legal voice, but not the ecclesiastical one. 

8 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

As many people have said here over the years, a disciplinary council is not involved in investigation,

Not generally or extensively.  But obviously some "investigation" is appropriate.  Denver Snuffer and Sam Young were both disciplined based on their public statements, which were "investigated" by local leaders.

Usually, though, disciplinary proceedings arise based on confessed misconduct.

8 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

as the church does not have or employ those kinds of resources.

True.  But KM is not functioning in an investigative capacity in anticipation of ecclesiastical discipline.  It has been contacted regarding legal issues, and is responding to those legal issues.

8 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

A disciplinary council happens when someone admits or is accused of wrongdoing.

They can also happen when someone accuses another of wrongdoing.

They can also happen when the wrongdoing is public and obvious (John Dehlin, Denver Snuffer, Kate Kelly, Jeremy Runnells, Sam Young).

8 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

In the cases noted, only a few mention the dates. The time between the "investigation" and "status/resolution" reflects the time KM spend looking into the matter.

Which reinforces my point: This document has very little value in gauging the Church's care or lack of care regarding abuse victims.  It is cursory.  It is a spreadsheet with very brief factual summaries.  It is intended as an internal legal document.

Thanks,

-Smac

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3 minutes ago, CV75 said:

Not to me, but enjoy!

I don't enjoy this at all, but I guess you find it funny that I'm interested. I've mentioned before that there is a long history of child abuse in my wife's extended family, and this kind of stuff just hits home with me. I readily admit it's hard to respond to this without emotions being involved.

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12 minutes ago, smac97 said:

That is probably why Mr. McKnight leaked it.  It's not about information per se.  It's about using carefully-selected bits of information to foment ill will against the Church.

Apples and oranges.

And you recognize that the leaked document is six years old, right?  So juxtaposting this document with Sam Young is rather inapt.

Again, apples and oranges.

-Smac

I wouldn't consider this apples and oranges, but perhaps, my considerations are apples and oranges.  

I think the age of spreadsheet, six years, is rather perfectly fitting for the Sam Young era, but like you stated, not enough information is within the spreadsheet to make a certain conclusion.  

The spreadsheet does create a PR nightmare, especially with the Sam Young situation.  It feeds the idea that the Church doesn't necessarily know how to handle these difficult cases.  This may or may not be true.  I think we will learn a lot over the next year.  I am not of the belief that the Church is actively covering up anything in this realm, as much as trying to find some sort of peace for all parties as each situation arises.  

I doubt the efforts of framing the spreadsheet as trivial is going to work.  We can see that media is already picking up this leak and concerns continue to grow.  

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18 minutes ago, smac97 said:

That is probably why Mr. McKnight leaked it.  It's not about information per se.  It's about using carefully-selected bits of information to foment ill will against the Church.

 

This is patently false.  We did not carefully select this, nor did the source.  There was no timing on our part either.  I can't speak for the source, they gave us the green light Sunday night.  They did not explicitly tell me why so I suppose they could have been wanting to time it with all that is going on with Sam, but with what I know about the source, I don't think that is what triggered it.

The source is considering coming forward in a couple of weeks so we may be able to shed more light on what happened behind the scenes, but your assumption is 100% false.

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Just now, FearlessFixxer said:

This is patently false.  We did not carefully select this, nor did the source.  There was no timing on our part either.  I can't speak for the source, they gave us the green light Sunday night.  They did not explicitly tell me why so I suppose they could have been wanting to time it with all that is going on with Sam, but with what I know about the source, I don't think that is what triggered it.

The source is considering coming forward in a couple of weeks so we may be able to shed more light on what happened behind the scenes, but your assumption is 100% false.

I should note that I broke my rule in not talking to Ryan about this board. I asked him about this because I wanted the answer. It's about what I thought it would be. 

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One update for all here.  In the wiki page I made a note that in the last case on page two the missionary was serving in a non-mandatory reporting state and his home state is a mandatory reporting state.  The part about his home state is true, however, there is some indication that my initial research into the state he is serving in is incorrect.  As soon as I confirm it, I will edit the wiki, but it appears that he was serving in a mandatory reporting state.

Edited by FearlessFixxer

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33 minutes ago, ALarson said:
Quote

The document doesn't say that.  It says: "Elder ____________ accused of sexually abusing 8-year-old __________."

Surely you appreciate and respect the difference between an accusation and a determination of guilt?

Or is an accusation alone sufficient to condemn, in your view?

Well, he was sent home because of it. 

The document doesn't say that.  The document says he "has returned home."  If anything, that sounds like he "returned home" of his own accord, as in he completed his missionary service (as opposed to being "sent" home, such as was indicated for the elder who "fondled a young girl over her clothing" ("The Elder has been sent home for ecclesiastical reasons...")).

33 minutes ago, ALarson said:

So I'd imagine there was some pretty strong evidence that there was abuse. 

"I'd imagine" being the operative wording.

You don't know.  You are just guessing.

33 minutes ago, ALarson said:

They also state that they (church leaders) are working with the "victim's family".

Meh.  The document also states that "{t}he disciplinary council held in the mission determined no action would be taken," and that "{t}he home stake president is also not inclined to take any action."

It's an internal document, so formalities like "purported victim" or "alleged victim" could easily be overlooked.

Thanks,

-Smac

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23 minutes ago, smac97 said:

That is probably why Mr. McKnight leaked it.  It's not about information per se.  It's about using carefully-selected bits of information to foment ill will against the Church.

Apples and oranges.

And you recognize that the leaked document is six years old, right?  So juxtaposting this document with Sam Young is rather inapt.

Again, apples and oranges.

-Smac

Does it matter..in the course of real lives and the law...that these documents are six years old.  Have fun Smac tying all this up in pretty little bows like you do.

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      Now, regarding what in no doubt controversial lanuage by me, “the woman from Colorado did nothing to provoke the assault”, let me explain. First and foremost, this woman from Colorado absolutely deserved no assault. However, that does not mean she did nothing to provoke anger in her boyfriend. No doubt Buzzfeed readers are left with the impression that she did nothing at all. That very well maybe true but not guaranteed. I’ve dated girls who’d pinch me to inflict pain because she was upset at me, I’ve been tripped out of jealous resentment by one causing pain, pulled away from hanging out with friends simply because she wanted to spend time with me after being 20 minutes separated, and other annoying events were provided to me by ex girlfriends. Everyone of those instances triggered resentment in me. In some of those cases, anger. This is in addition it my 20 years of marriage. There have been moments when my wife really has pushed me to my limits of my patience and anger. So the thought of hitting a girl has crossed my mind more than once in my life; but except for my own being a total jerk moment in 6th grade, I have never hit a girl in my life. You simply walk away, get your mind off the situation, on to something else you’re calmer or calmer and in control. 
      Now, back to the Colorado woman. Did she inflict physical pain upon her boyfriend? Did he hit her after she hit him? She slapped him and then he punched her in the face a couple of times? Again, she would not have deserved being hit and I believe she should not have been assaulted as she reported but her words do not vindicate her of any wrong doing so I find this reporting wanting in detail.
      As for her husband, the man who developed mental illness, I think of my wife’s grandfather. After his first wife passed away, he remarried a woman who developed Alzheimer’s which became violent. At one point she tried to kill him with a knife. Eh placed her in a home and wiped out all his personal savings after insurance ran out. He paid for her stay unti the end of her life. I thought that was very noble of him. But, could he have divorced her? Absolutely. In fact, I think I would in the same situation. I’d make sure she’s taken care of to the best of my ability, but probably divorce her. As for her counsel from her bishop, I do believe that happened but under what circumstances is not known. What the bishop told her is not inherently wrong, but not correct in my opinion as per what was reported in this article. Under what circumstances would an LDS bishop counsel divorce or if they are prohibited from promoting divorce, at least think and / or feel that divorce was correct? My family was over at a friend’s house last Sunday for dinner. The lady of the house recently divorced and is a divorce lawyer by profession. Niki (my wife) and I have known her and loved her as a good friend years before there was even talk of divorce between her and her ex husband. I asked her about her experience with her bishop(s) and stake president through the ordeal. She said that although none openly advocated divorce they all knew it was the best course for her marriage. In her case, her ex husband had cheated on her several times during the last few years of their marriage, well, of their marriage and living together (the divorce took three years after their separation). She said that the stake president gave her the most grief out of all the leaders she spoke to. At one point he told her to pray again to make sure she was making the right decision. She said she simply told him no. That her mind was made up and divorce was her course of action. I told her “good”. Niki agreed with her as well as her new husband of four years, who is also very active LDS member.
      I found nothing wrong or “unMormon” my friend’s response. Is there anything in the LDS Church which obligates a Mormon to obey his or her stake president’s counsel? And, if any Mormon believes he or she should, why? I understand that LDS culture does stress that many times but I have never found that foundation as correct. All LDS members should absolutely include God and living revelation into their personal decisions. 
      My last citation:
      OK, a bishop said, ‘if you lost a little weight he wouldn’t cheat’? This sends up a big red flag in me. Under what circumstance would a bishop say such a thing? The only circumstance I can think of is a bishop responding according to his cultural learning. By that I mean his life as a whole. I cannot think of any official LDS Church teachings including conference talks, lesson mauals, and especially not scripture, which would influence and Mormon to think such a thing. This, in my view, is completely worldly, not remotely “LDS”. That said, i if there is a “Mormon culture” out there which teaches such a thing, is there any disagreement from any active / believing Mormon who would think in this manner is a result of worldly teachings?
      Thanks for your time reading. I look forward to responses.
      UPDATE: Taking so much time to write up this post and struggling to keep a sweet five year old off of my lap while typing all of this I had forgotten to bring up the lawyer at the end. He is stated that he in 26 years seen Mormon bishops speak to the the defense of accused male abusers but never to the female accusers. My question is of those times how many of those bishops were summoned to testify on behalf of the female accusers as opposed to being summoned to testify for the male accused? I think such data would paint a more accurate picture as opposed to Buzzfeed’s portrayal of some sort of widespread neglect amongst LDS leaders. 
    • By Bernard Gui
      http://www.lds.org/c...ldsorg?lang=eng
      Mrs. Gui and I have been involved in piloting the Addiction Recovery Program, emphasis
      on the support of families and loved ones of addicts. When we had our initial experiences with
      loved ones in addiction, there wasn't much the Church offered in the way of help, except
      to point us to Al-Anon. Now, there are LDS12-Step programs for addicts and for families and
      loved ones whose lives are messed up with co-dependency. The 12 Steps are similar to
      AA, but Christ centered with quotes from General Authorities and LDS scriptures in addition
      to the AA resources that are available. We have learned more about the Atonement and
      its practical application in this program than we have anywhere else. It is hands-on and
      powerful. Hurrah!
      I invite anyone who is struggling with any kind of addiction or who has had their lives turned upside
      down by having an addict in the home to find the LDS ARP program near you. The Church
      website has a locator. This is a huge step in the right direction.
      These are effective spiritual tools and bring great blessings and healing to the victims of addiction!!
      Bernard
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