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lostindc

Sam Young is Excommunicated

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Never heard of this guy until today. 

All I can say is that when people have something they think the church should change, they got to stop using these publicity stunts and such. When people use these tactics, it is obvious to me that they think more that the church is an institution only and not really led by inspiration. 

Of course, they would have a reason to since some things, like polygamy and blacks regaining the priesthood, happened during political parallels. I guess they think they can use social pressure to do the same. 
 

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I personally believe that worthiness interviews are essential in the church keeping the integrity of its requirements to enter the temple and advance someone in the priesthood.  I don't think they should be completely abolished.  As others have pointed out, much good can come from such interviews.  Both sides seem to only be able to talk extremes at both ends of the discussion.  Isn't there some middle ground that is reasonable and not so invasive or inappropriate?

Why can't' the church add to their famous handbook of instructions offer better guidelines on how these interviews will be conducted.  Something like this:

The only question to be asked in worthiness interviews is "Are you keeping the law of chastity?"

If the answer is yes, then move on to the next question.  

If the answer is no.

If the person has expressed concerns about their worthiness, ask them how they plan to address the problem.  Maybe the person is not even ready to discuss the issue.  Maybe the person doesn't want any help in the repentance process.  Maybe they don't want you or anyone else to even know what the problem is they are dealing with. If they ask for help, figure out a way to help them meet their goal of being able to answer honestly that they are living the law of chastity once again. Your role as bishop is only to act as the gatekeeper to keep unworthy members from entering the temple.  Repentance is between the individual and the Lord.  How that repentance process happens is up to the individual.  Your help is only needed when asked for.  

This approach would give ALL the power to the individual of how the issue is discussed and how they want it addressed.   They should be told that the door is always open when they are ready for another worthiness interview or if the church can help in any way.  The integrity of the worthiness of temple attendees is kept intact.

Of course, more thought should go into exactly how the bishop's handbook is worded.

 

 

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2 hours ago, Danzo said:

I hate to break it to you, but the government "system' doesn't really have a good track record of helping abused children. In my part of the world, much worse than anything the church is being accused of.

 

Call for references please. I don't think you are suggesting that criminals should be shielded from the law.  I hope that's not what you are arguing. Have you read about Frank Curtis btw?

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2 hours ago, Danzo said:

I am aware of several cases of abuse being uncovered through worthiness interviews.  If you take away these interviews, these poor children might still be suffering from abuse.

Not if there were other widely known methods of reporting for victims in particular. For confessors of crimes like child abuse (and most don't confess I would imagine) they should be told that it is their and the leaders moral responsibility to report. 

Edited by Abulafia

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As of a few hours ago.. quitmormon had  

757 resignations under review.

736 sent to church

3436 with confirmation waiting.

 

Some may think..good riddance.. Some may applaud... Some may use the wheat and tares analogy.

I'm just sad and disappointed

Edited by Abulafia
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7 hours ago, lostindc said:

The argument that a small percentage of leaders are carrying out the abuse is not really a strong argument at all.  Every soul counts in the eyes of the Lord.  What would Jesus do?

The argument is asking temple recommend questions isn't abuse

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6 hours ago, lostindc said:

Get rid of worthiness interviews with minors.  Eliminate sexually charged questions with adults.  

What would do Scott?  I am genuinely curious based on years of reading your posts and your previous status with Deseret News.

So ban youth from the temple

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3 hours ago, Abulafia said:

As of a few hours ago.. quitmormon had  

757 resignations under review.

736 sent to church

3436 with confirmation waiting.

 

Some may think..good riddance.. Some may applaud... Some may use the wheat and tares analogy.

I'm just sad and disappointed

What on earth is quitmormon and why should I believe any thing they say?

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3 hours ago, Abulafia said:

As of a few hours ago.. quitmormon had  

757 resignations under review.

736 sent to church

3436 with confirmation waiting.

 

Some may think..good riddance.. Some may applaud... Some may use the wheat and tares analogy.

I'm just sad and disappointed

He’s up to 900 under review now. 

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14 hours ago, lostindc said:

What was the key that got Sam excommunicated?

Nothing he did was an offense worthy of excommunication. But regardless if you poke the bee's nest too hard and too often, they will kick you out.

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8 hours ago, carbon dioxide said:

Because minors do violate the law of chastity.  It is true believe it or not.  Detailed questions are not required but one can't avoid the issue.  Teens are exposed to far worse on their phones and in the media.  Even in school they talk about stuff. 

Asking sexual questions is an invitation for a sexual harassment lawsuit, to say nothing of the psychological damage done to the child.

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17 minutes ago, TOmNossor said:

Long ago he encouraged all members to refuse to sustain LDS leaders at general conference for about 9 reasons.

CFR on two counts:

That he encouraged ALL members to not sustain LDS leaders

That doing so would be in any recognizable sense of the word apostasy

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5 hours ago, california boy said:

I personally believe that worthiness interviews are essential in the church keeping the integrity of its requirements to enter the temple and advance someone in the priesthood.  I don't think they should be completely abolished.  As others have pointed out, much good can come from such interviews.  Both sides seem to only be able to talk extremes at both ends of the discussion.  Isn't there some middle ground that is reasonable and not so invasive or inappropriate?

Why can't' the church add to their famous handbook of instructions offer better guidelines on how these interviews will be conducted.  Something like this:

The only question to be asked in worthiness interviews is "Are you keeping the law of chastity?"

If the answer is yes, then move on to the next question.  

If the answer is no.

If the person has expressed concerns about their worthiness, ask them how they plan to address the problem.  Maybe the person is not even ready to discuss the issue.  Maybe the person doesn't want any help in the repentance process.  Maybe they don't want you or anyone else to even know what the problem is they are dealing with. If they ask for help, figure out a way to help them meet their goal of being able to answer honestly that they are living the law of chastity once again. Your role as bishop is only to act as the gatekeeper to keep unworthy members from entering the temple.  Repentance is between the individual and the Lord.  How that repentance process happens is up to the individual.  Your help is only needed when asked for.  

This approach would give ALL the power to the individual of how the issue is discussed and how they want it addressed.   They should be told that the door is always open when they are ready for another worthiness interview or if the church can help in any way.  The integrity of the worthiness of temple attendees is kept intact.

Of course, more thought should go into exactly how the bishop's handbook is worded.

 

 

I think most of these changes happened perhaps partially because of Sam Young, but Sam judged them be not enough change.  This is another reason, I think Sam is consciously or unconsciously caught up in his movement.  

I wonder if he is rejoicing because of all those who have left the church in large part because of him?

I wonder if he will claim he is rejoicing or claim it is unfortunate.

I do not know the heart of the man, only the public spectacle. 

Charity, TOm

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34 minutes ago, rockpond said:

Sam Young has posted the text of his excommunication letter:

https://invisiblescubit.wordpress.com/2018/09/17/excommunication-edict/

I think these two sentences from the letter give it to you in a nutshell—

The issue is not that you have concerns–or even that you disagree with the Church’s guidelines, rather it is your persistent, aggressive effort to persuade others to your point of view by repeatedly and deliberately attacking and publicly opposing the Church and its leaders.  You are entitled to your opinion or position, but you cannot remain a member in good standing while attacking the Church and its leaders and trying to get others to follow you.

Earlier in the letter the SP stated...

Quote

This action was not taken because of your opinion or position on protecting children.

I got a chuckle out of that. The action wasn't taken because of his position, it was done because he publicly took that position in opposition to the church. So, yeah, it really was because of his position about protecting children.

It seems clear from both quotes that the SP believes he was not punishing Sam for his position. He was punishing Sam speaking loudly about his position. Sam was punished for speaking in favor of his position over the policy and action of church leaders. If Sam would have remained quiet in his opinion there wouldn't have been a problem. I feel this is a warning for members not to speak out. It's a warning that they should agree publicly, or at least not disagree publicly. It's about not challenging authority. I think we all knew that, but to me it is sad that disagreeing with men and a policy results in this kind of action. To me, it makes the church look weak and afraid. They would prefer that people who disagree remain silent. They would prefer the echo chamber of faithful affirmation of church leaders.

IIRC there was a part on the audio where Sam claimed that in the DC the SP stated that there was a Deseret News article claiming that Sam encouraged people to leave the church. Sam disputed this, but there was no reference for what he actually had said. The SP used the DN article as proof of his apostasy. Does anyone have any information on this? What was the DN article he was referring to?

It doesn't seem appropriate to me that the SP would use a news article which made a claim, especially one being disputed with no reference provided, as evidence to excommunicate Sam Young. Sam denied encouraging people to leave the church, yet the SP believed the news article. I'd love to see more about this if anyone has some info.

In the end, I wasn't surprised by the decision. Only disappointed and saddened. My wife, on the other hand, can't believe the church would do such a thing. She was literally grief stricken. Every step of the way she knew the church would do the right thing, so when they X'd Sam she lost significant trust in the church and its leaders. I suspect there are many who feel the same way.

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57 minutes ago, rockpond said:

He’s up to 900 under review now. 

Does anyone have any idea what the numbers were Sunday morning before Sam read his letter, and therefore how much his excommunication has effected their numbers?

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10 minutes ago, HappyJackWagon said:

IIRC there was a part on the audio where Sam claimed that in the DC the SP stated that there was a Deseret News article claiming that Sam encouraged people to leave the church. Sam disputed this, but there was no reference for what he actually had said. The SP used the DN article as proof of his apostasy. Does anyone have any information on this? What was the DN article he was referring to?

I don't have a link, but I'll bet it referenced his statements (two, I believe) along the lines that a) anyone thinking of joining the Church shouldn't because of our interview policies, and b) parents should rethink their continuing membership in and support of such a system (as best I can recall). I know that those who don't support Sam consider such things to be encouragement to leave the Church, and those who support Sam dispute this. In the DC, the only opinion that matters is the SP, and he's the one Sam needed to satisfy. It is clear from his statements before, during, and after the DC that Sam made no attempts to satisfy the SP on this score. 

It doesn't seem appropriate to me that the SP would use a news article which made a claim, especially one being disputed with no reference provided, as evidence to excommunicate Sam Young. Sam denied encouraging people to leave the church, yet the SP believed the news article. I'd love to see more about this if anyone has some info.

If it had been me, I would simply have said, "It is reported that you have said X, Y. and Z. Would you please state here for the DC a) whether you made these statements, and b) if you want to clarify, expand, or explain any of them?  That would have been my approach with everything. Sam could have a) backpedaled, which might have preserved his membership in some form, or b) doubled down and continued to attack the Church. I think he would have chosen the latter; he has too much invested in this and craves the attention too much to abandon his movement to preserve his membership. This would have led to his statements in the DC themselves being the primary evidence. 

I understand why the SP went with the 15/45 minute format (in order to cap the circus and keep the time reasonable), but for me, I think gravity of a DC means that you sometimes need to settle in for a marathon. All of my DCs were voluntary confession/law of chastity-related (so, no apostasy ones), but even these always took longer than an hour before the deliberation/prayer phase. I had one that took five hours, start to finish, and none of the facts were in question. It was a matter of making sure we arrived at the correct decision. 

All told, I think this was handled very well, though. Dignified, and keeping the circus atmosphere to a minimum. 

 

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13 minutes ago, bluebell said:

I don't agree.

Reading Sam's own words, it's not that he publicly disagreed with the church, it's what he said that his disagreement meant (that the church leaders need to resign, that the church is harmful to children, that the leaders are not following Christ, that people should not join the church, and that members should also oppose church leaders).

Yeah, that there is disagreement on these points, even with liberal Saints who dislike many Church policies and teachings, is surprising to me. It was patently obvious that Sam publicly opposed the Church and encouraged others to do the same (to put it mildly and understate). 

I'm surprised that it took as long as it did to get to this point. As with Kate Kelly, John Dehline, et. al., no one can say that the Church wasn't forbearing or patient. I think in all of these cases, the Church could have acted much sooner without being unfair or reactionary. 

One thing that the patience approach does is that it brings about the inevitable shark-jumping, as they escalate their antics in an attempt to maintain more and more publicity and attention. In the modern short shelf life of of social media attention, people become irrelevant if they don't keep upping the ante, so simply waiting them out ensures that they will keep doing more and more extreme antics and hijinks. 

I wonder who the next batter up is? Who wants to fill the void now that the stage is open?

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1 hour ago, rockpond said:

Sam Young has posted the text of his excommunication letter:

https://invisiblescubit.wordpress.com/2018/09/17/excommunication-edict/

I think these two sentences from the letter give it to you in a nutshell—

The issue is not that you have concerns–or even that you disagree with the Church’s guidelines, rather it is your persistent, aggressive effort to persuade others to your point of view by repeatedly and deliberately attacking and publicly opposing the Church and its leaders.  You are entitled to your opinion or position, but you cannot remain a member in good standing while attacking the Church and its leaders and trying to get others to follow you.

 

If this were the forums, Sam could issue a CFR. One that could not be met, I think.

Edited by Gray
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26 minutes ago, Benk said:

Does anyone have any idea what the numbers were Sunday morning before Sam read his letter, and therefore how much his excommunication has effected their numbers?

I don't know but if people are making knee jerk decisions to resign than what does that say about how they feel about their membership? like are all these people active or what? 

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Something has been bothering me about the underlining assumptions about this whole discussion. That I haven’t been able to articulate until now.

we are told that bishops shouldn’t ask a minor details about their sex life. Why are we assuming a minor has a sex life? We are teaching them the law of chastity. Why assume they will ignore it and have sex lives to share details about?

The whole assumptions here is our kids are having sex and shouldn’t be accountable if they do. But they shouldn’t be and are accountable if they violate their covenants.

 

 

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3 minutes ago, Duncan said:

I don't know but if people are making knee jerk decisions to resign than what does that say about how they feel about their membership? like are all these people active or what? 

I don’t believe for a second that people are resigning over those

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