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Posts posted by LoudmouthMormon

  1. 12 hours ago, AtlanticMike said:

    Also for any ex-mormons / Mormons in your experience, if someone decides to leave the church, will the rest of their life be consumed with always researching church doctrine and teachings to try to justify exiting a religion they probably grew up in?


    Plenty of serious happening in this thread, so here's a laugh:

    Fred: I thought about giving up coffee, but decided I didn't want to give up the health benefits.

    LDSFred: What health benefits do coffee give you?

    Fred: Well, for one thing, it keeps me from being Mormon...

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  2. Looking through LDS Library app these days is a constantly changing wonderland of amazement.

    (If the image is too small, there are entries for Self-Reliance, Abuse, Addiction, Adoption, Death, Disabilities, Divorce, Education, Employment, English Learning, Family, Finances, Grief, Hope, Media Safety, Mental Health, Physical Health, Pr0nography, Pregnant and Single, Preparadness, Same-sex Attraction, Single Parent Families, Suicide, and Transgender.)


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  3. I'm in a ward with older folks, lots of retired military, relatively well-to-do overall.  Quite conservative.  We went back to in-person ASAP (which was shortly after someone had a news article about how this or that politician-in-charge was making a fuss over the constitutionality of banning church attendance.   Ever since, we've had maybe 65% in-person attendance, 45% virtual.  After a few months of laptops and cheap webcams, the wards in the building spent ~$600 on a better camera and decent AV equipment.  Me and one other guy take turns running the camera.  I just got back from broadcasting our ward's 2nd funeral in the last 6 months.

    From the beginning, we had one or two folks resistant to masks, nobody seemed to care.  Our bishopric was peopled by folks who thought masks were silly, but they've obeyed local health orders and direction from the stake.  The nanosecond our older folks had access to vaccines, the number of unmasked started growing.  It's maybe 10-15% now.  

    We've had maybe half a dozen families who got, and recovered from, COVID.  I don't know of any old people who caught it.


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  4. I was incredibly happy to watch Elder Oaks' talk yesterday.  It was like a refreshing breath of normalcy, after a pandemic-and-social-unrest-fueled year of grief.  In the last year, I've interacted with people who are giving serious thought to notions like:

    - The constitution is (at best) outdated/needs to be replaced, or (at worst) is evil/needs to be actively resisted.
    - Separation of power should be discarded when people feel it's justified.
    - People should not be treated as equal citizens in the eyes of the law.  Government should make things harder for some people, and easier for others, for various reasons.
    - Pulling down statues of people who created and preserved our constitution, and burning what some consider our sacred institutions to the ground, is a worthy goal long overdue.

    I'm grateful to hear that folks like @Duncan considered Oaks' remarks to be so self-evident as to be boring.  You don't have to cross too many sociopolitical lines to find how not everyone sees it that way.

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  5. Yay - a prepper/gun thread!  

    I'm a halfway-zealous prepper, and a 3/4's-of-the-way zealous 2nd amendment enthusiast.   To give you a taste: I was reviewing my family's pandemic plans in October of 2019, and I brought our pandemic stuff up from the basement in February 2020.  And I'm about to drive across 2 states and attend a four day defensive handgun training class, out in the middle of the Nevada desert, with 600-1000 other gun nuts like me, each one of us more armed than the last.  I've safely and legally carried concealed in five states, and taken my firearm with me on commercial airline flights so often, the extra hoops to jump through have become a boring exercise. 


    38.8.16   Extreme Preparation or Survivalism

    The Church encourages self-reliance. Members are encouraged to be spiritually and physically prepared for life’s challenges. See 22.1. However, Church leaders have counseled against extreme or excessive preparation for possible catastrophic events. Such efforts are sometimes called survivalism. Efforts to prepare should be motivated by faith, not fear. Church leaders have counseled members not to go into debt to establish food storage. Instead, members should establish a home storage supply and a financial reserve over time. See 22.1.4 and “Food Storage” (Gospel Topics, topics.ChurchofJesusChrist.org).

    I welcome the new beefed up language.  I've been preaching against fear for at least two decades now - usually preaching at people concerned about me and my zealous buddies.  I probably know 100 or more serious-borderline-extreme prepper-type folks.  Most of 'em are mostly normal.   Many of them were involved with a certain "Another Voice of Warning" website, but the longer they stayed, the more they realized the people there are unhinged and deluded.  A few are what I'd consider, well, tinfoil hat wearing conspiracy-everywhere-seeing nutters.  But I'm far more worried about a local family in my ward who went in 2020 and blew a thousand bucks on guns they don't know how to shoot, because the news gave them anxiety.  

    "Extreme or excessive preparation for possible catastrophic events" - I can hang with that.  Glad to hear the handbook doesn't expect the nation to fail, global economic collapse, nuclear war, or any of the other stuff I enjoy thinking about.  

    As to how plain old armed America is - here's a fun story: About a dozen years ago in my ward, one of the sisters was asking around to find other sisters who might want to get their concealed carry permits.  She couldn't find any takers - all the other sisters already had their permits.

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  6. Some people say prostitution is the oldest profession.  I believe armchair quarterbacking is slightly older.  Cain might have started it.

    No matter what someone else does with their means, it's never right enough.

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  7. [Simplified version of my family finances to visualize things]:

    I have a family checking account, and a spreadsheet that lists the different 'buckets'.   At the beginning of the month, the balance is zero.  I deposit my $1000 paycheck, and indicate Food: $250.  Auto: $250.  Healthcare: $250.  Utilities: $250.  As those bills come due, I write checks and adjust the spreadsheet.  At the end of the month, I have a zero balance again.

    Then, one month, I get both my normal $1000 paycheck, and a $500 bonus.  The balance in my account is now $1500.  In my spreadsheet, I create a new entry: Vacation: $500.    I go through my month writing checks and adjusting my spreadsheet.  

    Since money is fungible (as folks point out), how am I to prove that I used bonus money for vacation?  Or did I use paycheck money for vacation, and bonus money for bills?  

    One might say that my accounting records are sufficient - when I deposited the bonus money, I bumped up my "vacation" bucket.   So the bonus money is vacation money.  When I paid for the hotel, I didn't move the money out of the Utilities bucket, I moved it out of the vacation bucket.  

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  8. Quote

    “These donations were made by our family using an online account, which is shared by our family and associated with my name,”
    "The FEC’s website reports 11 donations over a four-and-a-half-month span for a total of $2,086.67 to three candidates, a political action committee and the Democratic National Committee.


    Family dinner table:

    "Grandson #12 and 14 did what?  Out of what account? For how long?  Get their mother on the phone - time for another chat."


    Honestly folks, when heads of world religions decide to take an interest in politics, especially ours, they sure the heck move needles a lot more than two grand of donations spread across five different places.  People are seriously thinking Pres U took out his checkbook because that sounded like a good idea?

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  9. Ask any artist of any kind, who tries to make money by commissioning their work, and they will have stories about requests they've had to decline.  They have all had to find where they personally draw their lines, and what they simply won't do.

    It's an almost universally understood concept in artistic circles.  Even 14 year old girls on Instagram understand it.  Check out what this random kid, one of hundreds of thousands, won't draw:


  10. On 2/28/2021 at 7:26 PM, poptart said:

    How are things in the Utah Bubble?  Despite the bad ward experience I had, it still paled in comparison to what I went through as a child.  From what I saw, you guys care about your own even the less active.

    This reminds me of other stories I've seen from the Finance Clerk office.  This is in Colorado, so out of "the bubble":

    - Various bishops have had me help pay for various funerals over the years, for utterly inactive folks that nobody knows.  One inactive grandmother was the only member, and when she died, we covered the nonmember's grandchildren's rent and car payments for a number of months.  We actually delayed marking the member deceased, so we could continue to issue fast offering aid in her name.

    - I've written a handful of substantial checks over the years to cover bills for nonmembers.  A furnace here, a new roof there.  I don't know the reasoning behind it, I'm just handed a bill from the bishop with instructions to pay it.  I had to do some pretty hefty research to find out how to issue checks when there isn't a direct member to tag as the recipient.

    - My ward has received a handful of donations over the years from nonmembers (individuals and businesses).  These are usually prompted by some service project or other, where the people on site refuse to accept payment, and the folks find a way to push through our refusal to be paid.   We get checks in the mail, a bishop will be "accosted" in the hallway and have an envelope of cash pushed onto him before he knows what's happening, etc.  Our tiny town council writes the ward a check every year for our participation in a yearly town festival.  (We use the money to fund continued participation the next year.)

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  11. On 2/28/2021 at 6:51 PM, poptart said:

    How are those who aren't fully active and faithful in the LDS church treated?  How about those who investigate the church, chose not to join yet still love the LDS church?

    Personal stories:

    My wife has been online friends with an inactive LDS lady for a few years.   The other day, it finally dawned on her that my wife was LDS, and she was just beside herself with how not-pushy my wife was.   She was almost wondering if my wife thought there was something wrong with her, and considered her not worthy of pushing the gospel on.  My wife figures she's got the recipe for chocolate chip cookies, and while she'll offer a cookie on occasion, she's not going to push the recipe unless it's asked for.

    I've known of two nonmembers that have held sort of informal callings in our ward.   Both were men, married to members with member kids.  I think they both worked with the young men.

    I did 6 years of inactivity myself, and never went on a mission.  My LDS family and peers were always respectful, nobody abandoned me or treated me differently.  This was in Salt Lake in the '80's.  I've never felt even a single twinge of being judged or thought poorly of because of either the inactivity or the lack of mission.  

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  12. 16 minutes ago, rongo said:

    He, and we, still get emails that started when he was admitted (parent "toolkit," tips and to-do lists, etc.). It seems to be an inefficient system where the left hand doesn't always know what he right hand is doing.

    Just emails, or physical mailings too?  I've found institutions seek dollars, and they will rain down endless marketing material on any name/address combination after they get a whiff that it might be tied to a college age person.  Anyone with teenagers can attest to the increase in junk mail the instant a kid registers for selective service.  And a quarter of a century after graduating the UofU, I continue to get periodic mailings from their alumni association looking for $$.

    Email is basically free.   Distribution lists require effort to maintain, with little incentive to do so.

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  13. On 2/28/2021 at 11:49 AM, AtlanticMike said:
    On 2/28/2021 at 10:30 AM, LoudmouthMormon said:

    My claim is that even if there's a measurable/provable real impact, it wouldn't make any difference to people.  Critics would still be unpersuaded and critical.)

    I doubt that. Real evidence like children miraculously walking out of hospitals on a scale not seen anywhere else would persuade any loving parent, critics also, to search for their closest priesthood holder and beg for a blessing, and probably multiple blessings. Let me ask you, do you think the priesthood is an actual power? A real honest to goodness power that's inside a worthy priesthood holder? 

    Yes, I believe the priesthood is an actual power.  I believe I've exercised it.  And I believe I've witnessed a genuine miracle when giving a blessing to someone, although the miracle wasn't what you'd think, and isn't really measurable.  I'm a big fan of statistical analysis, and I get your point.  I honestly don't know what you'd get if you tried measuring the power of a blessing.  How would you make it double blind?  How do you account for the placebo effect?  How do you account for the blessings given for non-measurable things like "the ability to accept God's will in this matter"?

    Anyway, for my point, I admire your optimism.  I stopped sharing it a few years into my apologetic brawling with critics.   At one point, I asked this question:


    Here's a thought experiment: Let's say tomorrow, non-mormon archaeologists announce they have found the grave of Lehi, the sword of Laban, the city of Zarahemla, horse and elephant bones, steel swords, breastplates, and evidence of the massive battles talked about in the BoM.  Let's say they unearth additional records that strongly support events described in the BoM - especially Christ's visit.  If all this happened, would you believe Joseph Smith and the BoM are what they claim to be, and would you go to a mormon church and get baptized?

    I was surprised by the responses.  After repeating the exercise in two or three different locations over the last two decades and getting similar results, I'm not surprised by them any more.  Old-timers may recognize some of the names here:


    Tchild2: “Problem is, that "tomorrow" never arrives, it exists as a hypothetical fantasy. What if Jesus came down and said that the Catholics had and always had the sole power to effect the ordinances of Christianity, would you then become Catholic, or whatever religion had their fantasy evidences and proofs materialize?
    "Tomorrow" is an artifice and construct of fantasy that doesn't exist, and never has with religious claims.”
    Sleepyhead: “The book of mormon being true doesn't automatically indicate that any of the reorganization chruches are true. Each step has to be looked at logically.”
    AZNative: “Let me know when they find Moroni's horse wrapped in the Title of Liberty, then we'll talk...”
    Oceanblue: “OK, BoM is true and Joseph was a fallen prophet. Power went to his head. Something like that. Saul, anyone?”
    Agnostimorm: "If something like what you describe happenned I would be thrilled to accept such a thing."
    "If God were a real being and he corresponded to the many things reported about him by Christians, it is likely I would not want anything to do with him."
    FormerLDS: "Honestly, I don't think it would change my opinion about the LDS organization.  With respect to seeing archaeological evidence, and believing, think about this:
    Have you ever seen the a devil cast out of a man? Certainly, that would be very convincing evidence.
    Have you ever personally witnessed prophecy? That too would be very convincing evidence.
    Have you ever seen wonderful works? Yet more evidence that might convince one to believe.
    All of these and more are done in the name of Jesus Christ by those who accepted a false gospel (Matt 7:22).
    Therefore, evidence can be very misleading where the truth of the gospel is concerned. How much cyanide kills? Likewise, a gospel that is 99.99% grace and .001% works will send a man's soul to the lake of fire for eternity, regardless the "evidence".
    The only gospel that will save is Believe WITHOUT works."
    Cinepro: "I'm still baptized, but it would certainly change the direction I'm heading."
    Roman: "Never because your little drama would never happen"
    Oprichnik (LDS): "It's in the Christian world's best interest that that scenerio not occur. Their agency would evaporate in a heartbeat."
    JustCurious: "Well anyone who would not would be a fool..."
    BAMMER: "I've already given my life over to the Lord and been reborn through faith. I confess Him daily. And I would never accept anything or anyone that taught another gospel.
    Ga 1:8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.
    Ga 1:9 As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.
    The BOM teaches that by grace man is saved "after all he can do." This means he works or qualifies himself for God's grace after a lifetime of efforts. This is a damnable lie and lies in direct opposition to the Gospel of Christ. So in a nutshell, I wouldn't care if an angel of light came and held plates in front of my face - if they taught another gospel, they are accursed."


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  14. 21 hours ago, Emily said:

    That argument, however humorous, is based on an invalid premise

    Oh, I totally agree.  But do you disagree with my actual claim?


    22 hours ago, LoudmouthMormon said:
    On 2/27/2021 at 8:02 AM, AtlanticMike said:

    If priesthood power and the power to heal is real, should it be measurable using Utahs density of Mormon priesthood holders compared to everywhere else in the world?     

    Dunno.   But assuming for a second it was measurable, and clearly proven, Douglas Adams told us what the result would be back in the late '70's. 

    (My claim isn't about the argument.  My claim is that even if there's a measurable/provable real impact, it wouldn't make any difference to people.  Critics would still be unpersuaded and critical.)

  15. 3 hours ago, AtlanticMike said:

    If priesthood power and the power to heal is real, should it be measurable using Utahs density of Mormon priesthood holders compared to everywhere else in the world?     

    Dunno.   But assuming for a second it was measurable, and clearly proven, Douglas Adams told us what the result would be back in the late '70's.   


    "I refuse to prove that I exist," says God, "for proof denies faith, and without faith I am nothing."

    "But," says Man, "the Priesthood Blessing is a dead giveaway, isn't it? It proves that You exist, and so therefore, by Your own arguments, You don't. QED."

    "Oh dear," says God, "I hadn't thought of that," and promptly vanishes in a puff of logic.

    "Oh, that was easy," says Man, and for an encore goes on to prove that black is white and gets himself killed on the next zebra crossing.


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  16. 11 hours ago, MiserereNobis said:

    So Rush Limbaugh is a "saint" worthy of testimony in your ward?

    With your use of quotes, yes, pretty much, for one or two members.   And I know my ward isn't the only one.   From an LDS-themed comedy album released a few years ago - the song "A Few of the testimonies"


    Elder Jones gripes that less-actives frustrate 'im
    Nine CTR's thank the same things verbatim
    Brother McPhie knows Rush Limbaugh is true
    And The Da Vinci Code may well be too

    It can't be satire if nobody recognizes it. :)

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  17. On 2/17/2021 at 11:23 AM, Fair Dinkum said:

    So first, I'm pointing this out and second wondering what it is that will be the next big story to hit the fan or blow up the boards. Or it could be that I am just seeing random patterns in the clouds.

    I don't expect it to be very big, but I fully expect something to happen in our next Fast and Testimony meeting in 3 Sundays.  I expect to see a handful of people report on the number of times they heard the name "Rush Limbaugh" in their testimonies.   Honestly, I'd be quite surprised to not hear that name from the podium in my own ward.

  18. 42 minutes ago, AtlanticMike said:

    Is this warrior mentality/personality found in our church more than other denominations?    

    Dunno.  But I have plenty of firsthand experience with it being plenty present in other denominations.

    I don't think it's a bad thing either.  I'm not sure if the notion has been canceled yet, but masculine traits are still present in plenty of men and boys.  Stuff like arming for battle, preparing to overcome obstacles, striving and competing, and related systems of advancement - good stuff.  Helps umpteen kagillions of our boys get molded into men.

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  19. Some folks will never learn unless they hurt themselves.   To a certain extent, we're a race of hot-stove-touchers, at least for part of our developmental journey.   

    And how exactly will those of us in that situation ever learn, if we're not burned by the stove?

  20. 1 hour ago, longview said:
    Matthew 9:2. And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee.
    Matthew 14:27. But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying, Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid.
    Mark 6:50. For they all saw him, and were troubled. And immediately he talked with them, and saith unto them, Be of good cheer: it is I; be not afraid.
    John 16:33. These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
    Acts 23:11. And the night following the Lord stood by him, and said, Be of good cheer, Paul: for as thou hast testified of me in Jerusalem, so must thou bear witness also at Rome.
    Acts 27:22. And now I exhort you to be of good cheer: for there shall be no loss of any man’s life among you, but of the ship.
    Acts 27:25. Wherefore, sirs, be of good cheer: for I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me.
    Alma 17:31. And it came to pass that he flattered them by his words, saying: My brethren, be of good cheer and let us go in search of the flocks, and we will gather them together and bring them back unto the place of water; and thus we will preserve the flocks unto the king and he will not slay us.
    3 Nephi 1:13. Lift up your head and be of good cheer; for behold, the time is at hand, and on this night shall the sign be given, and on the morrow come I into the world, to show unto the world that I will fulfil all that which I have caused to be spoken by the mouth of my holy prophets.
    D&C 61:36. And now, verily I say unto you, and what I say unto one I say unto all, be of good cheer, little children; for I am in your midst, and I have not forsaken you;
    D&C 68:6. Wherefore, be of good cheer, and do not fear, for I the Lord am with you, and will stand by you; and ye shall bear record of me, even Jesus Christ, that I am the Son of the living God, that I was, that I am, and that I am to come.
    D&C 78:18. And ye cannot bear all things now; nevertheless, be of good cheer, for I will lead you along. The kingdom is yours and the blessings thereof are yours, and the riches of eternity are yours.
    D&C 112:4. Let thy heart be of good cheer before my face; and thou shalt bear record of my name, not only unto the Gentiles, but also unto the Jews; and thou shalt send forth my word unto the ends of the earth.

    Commandments and urging to be of good cheer?  It's almost as if it were a choice.  People can pick whether to be cheerful or cranky?  How about that.   This means being cheerful is a set of actions and behaviors, more than it is an internal state or feeling.

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