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Posts posted by Buzzard

  1. When OW was raising a ruckus, my impression was that Elder Oak's talk was a direct answer and response. And that's where OW really went off the rails. They had asked the question, and the brethren gave them the answer, but instead of accepting the answer, they just said "We'll keep asking until we get the answer we want". Didn't work for Martin Harris, didn't work for Kate Kelly.

  2. A lot of folks, the only information they have about Mormons is when the annual anti-Mormon speaker comes through.  If all I knew about Evangelicals came from say, Secular Humanists, I might not think too kindly of them, either. 

    But I understand. I confess to having been frustrated a few times when I was told what I "really" believe. 

  3. It's my understanding that there was a cadre of motorcycle officers not just doing traffic control, or "circling back", but doing rehearsed, choreographed maneuvers as a parade entry, and being part of that group is what the office wanted to avoid. He didn't go to his superior officer and complain, he asked another officer if he would trade.  I used to trade shifts all the time at work when we  worked nights and weekends.  It wasn't a big deal. Though apparently it is to the Chief.  

  4. It hasn't happened yet in this thread, but inevitably the comparison to other doctrinal "changes" like polygamy and the priesthood being extended to all worthy males will come up.  With the blacks and the priesthood, multiple prophets had stated that the ban was temporary, it was just a matter of when. Polygamy is also clearly presented in the BOM as a temporary condition.  

    But multiple apostles have, in referring directly to same sex sealings, used the term "never".  Often they were speaking on our need to be Christlike to those with same sex attraction, so the subject is immistakable. Even when referring to ordaining women, I detect a little wiggle room, saying it would only happen if the Lord commands it.  But as to sexually active gays, even those legally married, I detect a very firm stance that marriage between a man and woman (or women,  in some cases) is the only partnership that will exist in the eternities.  

    It's just not going to happen. I know Daniel2 and Rockpond and others are fishing for a way to make it happen, but it's not going to. 

  5. The ward I grew up in, in SE Salt Lake County, struggled to get attendance up to 50%.  I know this because the SP was a numbers guy and always recapped the results both in Stake and Ward conference. 

    After a couple of decades in SoCal, we moved to a ward in north Utah County. Only because of a calling I held for a couple of years do I know that attendance at Sacrament Meeting is 55-60%, which is around the average for the stake. So IMHO, it seems that attendance is up slightly over the past several years. 

    I read somewhere that during the pioneer era, attendance was often 25-30%, both because rural wards were so spread out that some members faced a several hour carriage ride to church and also that the church was so woven into the fabric of everyday lives of the members that Sunday attendance, while admirable, was simply one more thing that the members did.  It was just as important to drop off offerings at the bishops storehouse as it was to go to church.

  6. I was at Scout camp and playing "Scum" with some Scouts from our ward (using a standard deck of cards). Another leader from our stake (we had several wards camping together) told us that playing with face cards was against Church policy. I told him that it isn't, and that there is nothing in the handbooks, Ensign, or anything else that states this. He was bothered, because I was a bishop at the time. 


    Does anyone know where this notion started, or when the most recent iteration of it in Church literature was?

    On my mission, we had an apostle (Elder Perry, who at that time was a fairly young man) come through the European missions.  Of course, all the missionaries were pulled in for a mission conference, we also met with an adjoining mission.  After a very good talk in which he related his experience in the temple when all males were given the priesthood, he opened the floor for questions.  After a few good ones, one of our elders asked him about playing cards.  Elder Perry answered carefully, not saying that they were forbidden, but the the church discouraged them since people had gotten started down the wrong path playing them.  As he looked for the next question, this same elder started waving his hand again and calling out to him by name.  He then stated that the church should reconsider its stance, since his family had played them during many FHE's without problem.  

    A clearly miffed Elder Perry basically said good for you, and do what you want, but some people have gotten in trouble using them.  

    I had less of a problem with the original question than I did with challenging an apostle over such a minor point of policy.

  7. Only using your right hand to partake of the sacrament.

    Keeping the Sabbath Day Holy- No TV, hiking, outside play, socializing with friends, don't buy gas

    Only AP Teachers or higher prepare the sacrament (women used to do it and it's not an enumerated duty in the D&C)

    Deacon's holding a microphone for a blessing/confirmation in SM

    Not allowing a woman to hold her baby while it's being blessed

    Numbers 3 and 5 come out of the General Handbook, so not just tradition, at least church policy.  Our ward does have a tradition of having the mother bring the baby up to the front of the congregation to show him/her off, then the husband and other PH holders come forward to give the name and blessing. 

  8. In the two cases that I have known about, when opposite genders rented separate bedrooms but shared a common kitchen and living area, as soon as the bishop became aware of the arrangement, he invited both members in for a little chat. Both members were instructed to move out.  One did, the other became offended and inactive.  Pretty small sample size, but I think it's clear that the church opposes the concept. 

  9. Didn't President McKay have to personally intervene to prevent McMurrin's excom by calling his SP or offering to be a witness?  My memory is fuzzy on the details.  Lucky McMurrin knew President McKay personally or he would have lost his membership.  


    So while I agree with you broadly that the LDS Church is genteel with dissidents, there are occasions where local leaders perhaps get a little overzealous.  (FWIW ... I am NOT suggesting this is what happened in any recent public cases).

    IIRC, Brother McMurrin was an LDS professor up at the U. Over the years, he lost his testimony. Joseph Fielding Smith sent him a letter with questions about his stands on various doctrines. McMurrin told the truth in reply, but stated that he still attended his meetings, sang in the choir, and was an active member of his ward. JFS wanted to ex him, but President McKay stepped in and stopped it.  Brother McMurrin was not running around giving lectures on his post-Mormonism, or seeking to help people leave the church. He was a perfect example of someone who has a different opinion about some doctrines, but doesn't try to persuade others to join him. JFS just got hot under the collar.

  10. The only thing women can't do is anoint with oil and hold a few leadership positions. They may and certainly do call down the powers of heaven on their family.  Not to mention that having their Home Teachers, Husbands, Fathers, and faithful friends to call on blesses not just the member doing the asking but the member being asked. 

    Interestingly, my daughter and I were talking about this on the way to work this morning (I drop her off).  At about the midpoint of her mission, she was really struggling. Companion issues, tough city, general discouragement, the works.  She was praying ardently morning and night, but nothing seemed to lift her.  Finally, in response to an impression, she asked the elders for a blessing. She told me that that 19 year old pimply-faced missionary served as a direct conduit for what God wanted her to know. By the end of the blessing, her, her companion, and both the elders were crying. It was one of the more powerful moments of her mission. 

    She told me, if her companion had given her the blessing, it just wouldn't have been the same. Since then, she does not hesitate to ask for a priesthood blessing whenever she feels like she needs it. And, she has expressed gratitude that the men of the church hold the authority to bless her.  My often feminist daughter has no desire to hold the priesthood.  In her opinion, it just seems right to have that authority rest with the brethren. 

  11. I had understood that the SP didn't deliver the verdict on Sunday because he wanted more time to deliberate. Considering that the letter was delivered less than 24 hours later it doesn't seem like a whole lot of deliberating went on after the DC.


    Question: For those of you who have presided over DC's, how often have you NOT delivered the decision while the person is still present at the DC? It seems very unusual for the DC to close with the decision still pending (like Kate Kelly's) Hopefully the SP was one of the 2 MP holders who delivered the letter, otherwise it seems very cowardly to me.

    I have never actually participated in a DC.  From the knowledge I have as an outsider of a few of them, it's not uncommon for apostasy cases to take a day or two.  Sexual immorality cases, especially where there has been a confession and a desire for repentance, the verdict and decision seems to come the same day. 

  12. I've known several members who lost their testimonies, and were happy to tell you if you asked.  One, a close family member and RM, lived with a series of women before finding his current wife, a nice Atheist gal who was raised Catholic. He's never been asked to appear in front of a church court.  The difference is that it's private. If he decided to come back, then he might be accountable for his wild times, but right now neither his past behaviors nor current lack of belief are if concern to the church.  Now, if he was posting YouTube videos and running seminars about how to leave the church or cohabitate without your bishop finding out, that situation might change. 

    Both John D. and Kate K. got themselves in trouble for public advocacy, not private questions. 

  13. I've always wondered if things like this happen. It certainly is different.

    Read Cougarboard.com on most fast Sundays (You do have to be a "donor" to access the religion section, so this will cost you ten bucks). Everyone reports in on the strange testimonies in their ward.  Singing testimonies, travelmonies, medical reports, false doctrine, you name it, it's been done on open mic Sunday.  

    My best contribution was the couple who came up together and bore both their testimonies, first the wife, then her husband, standing together at the podium with their arms snugged tightly around each other's waist. 

  14. Of course..so, I guess it is okay that the cake baker who is catholic refuses to make a wedding cake with a Temple on it. 


    You are asking me to be compassionate?   Hmmm...okay.

    Well, at least is a comparable situation.  

    A Baker, doctor, photographer, whomever, who refuses to serve a person because of who they are, that's despicable. That same person now refusing to decorate a gay wedding cake, inseminate for a lesbian birth, video a same sex ceremony, or whatever, now it's a bit wobbly. All the difference in the world between refusing to serve a person and refusing to perform a specific service or product that goes against sincere belief.

  15. It's not about cakes.  It never should have been.  It's about absolutes vs. real life. 

    No one, in over 500 responses, has even addressed the examples given by the church of where a conflict between absolute non-discrimination and freedom of conscience could crop up.  Why not?  Maybe it's easier to talk about cake.  Cake is so much tastier than thorny moral issues that require compromise and understanding. It's so much easier to crack your protest sign over the other guys head and yell Sinner! or Hypocrite! at him.  Yeah, that's real useful.

  16. Will you stand with me in not discriminating against sinners?  Or will you stand with Elder Oaks who is on a campaign to encourage discriminating against those religion thinks is sinning.  We are all beggers.  We are all sinners.  Leave the judgement of other people's sins to God.

    Things get a little dicey not standing with the apostles.  Did you read my little ditty about how the principle of non-discrimination sounds wonderful, but real life can be a bit messier?

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