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Everything posted by rongo

  1. I was alerted that I've been referenced here. I haven't posted here since I left in July and said I wasn't going to post here any more, and I have never made a sock puppet. This isn't me, and I'm not sure why both of you think (or want to think) that it is. Stylistically, syntactically, and strategically, I don't think there is any similarity. Just for the record. Back to retirement!
  2. I might already be off the rails,and grinding the rims to nubs. I'm ticked enough about this, I think you're right. It's been a great 18 years, people! Kirk out.
  3. I would be happy and would shut up if he simply contacted me and told me what his thought process is (because this situation is so out there. When things are heated and people are being jerks, that's understandable. But I can't make heads or tails of this. So what assurances do I have that he won't have an episode and ban me again for no reason?) It would not be a conversation. I wouldn't reply to his response, if you're serving as re go between here.
  4. 1) Nemesis could reply in private, as I first contacted him. He could also be terse and brief. I still think that even "jerks" deserve some sort of brief response. He doesn't have to get into a ***-for-tat in threads. 2) If flags or reports don't trigger bans, then that raises even more questions. 3) I'm getting dangerously close to "RIP rongo: 2003-2022" territory.
  5. Disagree about "nothing but praise." Maintaining this with his own money is a good thing, but do you disagree that even that doesn't excuse his management style? Where else do people never know what their offenses are? Has he ever admitted that he messed up and undone something? Anyone aware of an example? That would show me something.
  6. Before I have to walk the plank for speaking evil of Nemesis, a couple more thoughts. 1) Has a thread originator ever been banned from his own thread? I doubt it, and definitely not when not behaving outrageously. No one has any idea what the offending post was! 2) The arbitrariness here is astounding. Why can't @Tacenda get rep points, bit other posters who are at least as vocal in their skepticism and unhappiness with the Church can? Nemesis has said before, "It's my board, I can do what I want for whatever reasons I want, and I don't have to explain myself to anyone." Technically true, yes, but just what kind of a parent, spouse, neighbor, etc. is a person like that like? No, you don't have to tell people what their supposed offenses we're, but why not do it? What kind of a person runs a message board that way?
  7. The frustrating things is that @Nemesis has posted since the ban happened, so he should respond at least to a private message. Especially when there doesn't appear to be any reason to anybody. I'm sure Nemesis has read this thread, too, but is just lying low and waiting for this to blow over. He's posted since then, and the this thread title has to have caught his attention. Nemesis always says he doesn't check often, doesn't communicate, etc., but it looks like more of a cowardly or lazy thing when he doesn't respond than a "too busy" thing. Nemesis takes the time to banter extensively, when he wants to. e.g., the thread where he was musing about being bishop of the MDDB ward. The other thing that bothers me is how it appears people can be banned for frivolous things, simply because someone reports something. Does Nemesis ever decide a flag or report was nonsense? Periodically, there is discussion about why this isn't as good as it used to be, where have manu good poster gone, etc. We're looking at exhibit A, right here.
  8. Scott, you're a technical genius. Signing out let's me read the thread. Thanks for the tip! I would start a part 2 thread (I wanted to comment on "righteous lying" and other things, but I have no idea if I'll be banned from that thread, too. Not knowing your accuser, the alleged offense, and what @Nemesis is thinking or intends is absurd. I can't even imagine what might have even been a stretch of a pretext. (shrug?)
  9. Just in case there continues to be radio silence, would someone please send me my list from the OP? It would be helpful if I could read the thread, too, though. Thanks!
  10. The form email when I asked what happened said that questions about why will be ignored. Anyone know of an alternate way to talk to an administrator? Thanks! This is uncharted water for me. I can't even read the thread any more!
  11. Coups, social unrest, and strong Muslim headwinds in Mali have made his campaigns tough sledding since 2012, but it would sure be great to see. https://www.deseret.com/u-s-world/2022/7/7/23153897/who-is-yeah-samake-mali-the-christian-candidate-2024-presidential-election-latter-day-saint
  12. The modern counseling term "validation" is what we used to work on under the Missionary Guide as "empathy." All people, all the time (there were role-plays and cassette tapes we used in our study). Validation/empathy is **huge** (I've worked with several CES letter casualties, and they're not interested in anything you have to say if you aren't genuinely empathetic, and not just "trying" or "faking it"). Whether or not I would strike the right balance between validation and education in your case, I don't know. Maybe you would end up commiserating with Raingirl out in the foyer.
  13. Of course (and no offence taken). There are probably more single women than average in this particular Relief Society, and all wards have at least several. My sister is a RS president in Gilbert, and she has been divorced for almost 25 years now. She would be very good on this topic as well (I'd need to bring her up to speed a bit on some things, but she already knows quite a bit). Maybe I could suggest that she do this (thinking out loud). I'm always very cognizant of "do no harm" and ensuring that people leave uplifted or at least edified, and that would include where people are at in the audience. I wonder if the sisters the RS president is concerned about will even come (depending on where they're at and how calcified their "setting" vis a vis the Church is)?
  14. That's always the wrong lesson to be learned from "sanctioned lying" instances in the scriptures or Church history (e.g., Abraham, Sarah, and Pharaoh, Nauvoo polygamy, etc.). It's not too far from that to justifying lying in temple recommend interviews because the person feels justified. I'll have more to say on this later (I only have time for some quick-strike responses right now). Honesty and "righteous lying" (ever justified?) is a very interesting topic to me.
  15. All you can do in your boat, I would say, is to develop a close communication relationship with God (through the Holy Ghost). You probably already are. You seem to be navigating this as well as possible, in your case, from how it seems to me.
  16. Yes! Many members are used to "Mormon nice" --- no disagreement, and apparent agreement all-around. We even see some of that in this thread --- disagreement makes some very uncomfortable. Honestly, people who thought past "ask anything" and controversial topics activities were "contentious" were mostly uncomfortable that people were free to depart from the tightly-correlated party line in asking questions, or in discussing topics and issues that were beyond "the standard three-hour block." Or that non-members were openly invited and attracted, and able to ask questions or even "take shots" at the Church (they were actually very respectful, but we did get many expected "old chestnut" questions, too).
  17. Keep plugging away in your new stake! Area leader roulette is a big factor --- some leaders are very supportive, while others are very risk-averse. And others yet are blasé and completely uninterested (and therefore a "no"). It all depends. Good luck!
  18. Very good point that "no comment" or "commanded not to talk about it" is a yes answer in the polygamy situation.
  19. Keep in mind that the audience and discussion isn't going to be anything like this thread. We here are a poor comparison to an audience in a local unit somewhere. Sometimes we lose sight of that. If there actually was a ward where the class was composed of the 20-30 personalities who participate regularly here (including some ex-members who still somehow come to church every week ) --- can you even imagine?
  20. When we did our series of firesides (Are Mormons Christian?, Book of Mormon: Fact of Fiction?, and Can Mormon Prophets Stand up to Scrutiny?), there were some stake members who were extremely upset and uncomfortable. Why are we doing this? they asked the stake presidency (it was my ward, but it was endorsed and supported by the stake). They were also worried because it had been advertised and promoted, and we ended up having around 130 non-members attend. One of those most concerned was a military chaplain. Feedback was extremely and overwhelmingly positive, although one stake member said that the minute Q&A started, he could feel the Spirit leave the room, and he felt it was contentious. It actually was very much not contentious (the anti-Mormon ministries who brought people were actually very respectful and well-behaved), but for those who were uncomfortable with it, it was the fact that people were asking questions pushing back on Church claims (some questions were asked by stake members, too). The questions, answers (given with skill, grace, and aplomb ), and give-and-take were good, and almost everyone left energized and uplifted. It's always good when people witness good discussion and handling of difficult topics and questions. I think some Church members mistake any deviation from our "safe" lesson format we are used to as "contentious," simply because it has the potential to dip its toes into the waters of "unsafe." I think some people mistake this feeling of discomfort and nervousness as "contention."
  21. This thread has been extremely helpful to me. 1) It has helped form a comprehensive list of possible concerns 2) The discussion has been good. I disagree about having a tacitly understood "avoid at all cost" order for discussion in a church setting. I think more discussion and exposure in faithful church settings (even if not as "advanced" as we all would like) would only help with people who get ambushed by things they don't know or haven't heard of online (who then usually have no faithful church setting to try to deal with it). I think there are things we can do other than say que sera sera with how people react to it --- with no attempt on our own or the Church's part to help.
  22. There is such a range of reactions and strong feelings on this and some other issues, and all Church members are at different places on the spectrum with it (though many haven't really given it much thought or been exposed to it much, actually). In 2009, after the FAIR conference in Frankfurt, we also had a fireside in Strasbourg, France (just across the Rhine). My wife and I spent the night in Offenburg, and were going to be picked up by a member of the Strasbourg stake presidency Sunday after church. We were early to church, and the only one there was a woman in her twenties. She was from Freiburg, but sometimes came on her own to help with the Offenburg branch (not a calling, purely voluntary). One of my teachers in the MTC was from Freiburg, so I asked her if she knew the family. That was her sister, and her family! After her mission, with no prospects for temple marriage materializing, she spent a few years in Australia, hoping to find someone to marry in the temple. Then, she finished her degree and was working for their version of Child Protective Services. She was very sharp and glowed with the Spirit (her family was very strong, and all sons and daughters served missions as a matter of course after their father had joined the Church from being talked to by missionaries at the train station). There weren't any other English speakers there that day, and it was nice for my wife to have her with her at church (the branch president had been at the FAIR conference, and he asked me if I would give my presentation for a combined priesthood/RS Society third hour). Afterwards, my wife said that if we still practiced polygamy, she would have no problem with her being a wife as well. She felt so bad for her. People definitely fall between the extremes of "utter revulsion, under any circumstances, full stop" and "acceptance," and this includes women as well. But, it's almost all looking back at the past or hypothetical. I don't know anyone who expects or looks for it to be lived again on earth (the hereafter is a different story, and again, there is a range of views on this).
  23. I think this is a crucial point when addressing the lying about polygamy on the part of both men and women. B.H. Roberts (a polygamist himself who was denied his seat in the House of Representatives as Utah's first congressman over polygamy) made the point in discussing John Taylor's debate with ministers at Bolougne sur Mer (France) that when sworn to secrecy by God, situational lying inevitably comes up when God's secrecy command comes into conflict with direct questions about it. He used the example of Peter, James, and John coming down from the Mount of Transfiguration, and being asked by the other apostles what had happened up there. Whatever they said would have been a lie (they were commanded to tell no one until the resurrection). When divine commandments to secrecy collide with a desire for absolute honesty, what are people to do?
  24. Lying to cover it up (whether commanded/endorsed by God, or not) is a front-and-center concern with this, regardless of where one is at on the issue, and it may be a central concern for some.
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