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Hugh B. Brown


Lamanite

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I recently read this account in Hugh's memoirs:

...A young woman, accused of sin, was brought before us. She confessed her sin and tearfully asked for forgiveness. Bishop Harris asked her to retire to another room while we considered our verdict.

He then turned to us. "Brethren, what do you think we should do?"

"I move we cut her off from the church," the first counselor said.

"I second the motion," I added.

Bishop Harris then took a long breath and said, "Brethren, there is one thing for which I am profoundly grateful, and that is that God is an old man. I would hate to be judged by you young fellows. I am not going to vote with you to cut her off from the church...The worth of souls is great in the sight of the Lord."

Years later Hugh went back and inquired after the women. Her Stake President had this to say:

"She is the best woman in the stake," he said. "She has been a stake president of the Relief Society and a ward Relief Society president. She sent four sons on missions after her husband died. She has been faithful and true all the days of her life."

This reminded me of some comments on a recent thread regarding Carol Lynn Pearson

I won't quote specifics but I felt a general attitude of "they both got what they deserve". I can't say it was anger just indignation at both Gerald and Carol. I would have like to seen a little more empathy and love.

In my mind outreach, love, and understanding do not equal condoning of actions.

Another situation regarding forgiveness took place when Hugh was an apostle:

While he [a missionary] was here [mission home] it was learned that he had been guilty of conduct not consonant with his calling. Until a missionary is forgiven of this, he or she should not be sent from the mission home into the mission field. But if, on investigation, the majority of brethren feel that the missionary should go on a mission and be forgiven of what he or she has done, then the missionary goes. I always took the...view, that if one is truly repentant, has forsaken his or her sin, done everything to make amends, then he or she sould go on a mission. This situation was discussed ver focibly in one of the meetings of the First Presidency and Twelve, some members of the Twelve taking the position that it was wrong to let this particular missionary go. On this occasion, I took the position, inasmuch as President McKay was not present, that the case should be referred to him for decision...He agreed with me that the young man should be permitted to go. He went and filled a good mission, although some of the Twelve failed to forgive him.

Although this says plenty about forgivness and the good that benefits both parties, I have to say what struck me most was the failure by some of the Twelve to extend forgiveness. I guess we all make mistakes.

Anyway I was really struck by Hugh's Christlike life, his honesty (especially regarding his own weaknesses), and his love for and testimony of the Restoration.

PS I'm too lazy to proofread so here goes the "Post New Topic" button right .....

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I'm teasing. It's just that you really let me have it on my Carol Lynn Pearson thread. However, I probably deserved it.

Hmmmmm......I don't recall.

One of my (few) virtues is that when I'm wrong, I admit it (especially when I shoot from the lip and blast someone unfairly). And I'll let you know (right behind the Ripley's Beleive It or Not people when it happens :P ).

I'll have to take some time and go back and review the thread- I don't recall being unduly harsh (at least in that one).

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Hmmmmm......I don't recall.

One of my (few) virtues is that when I'm wrong, I admit it (especially when I shoot from the lip and blast someone unfairly). And I'll let you know (right behind the Ripley's Beleive It or Not people when it happens :P ).

I'll have to take some time and go back and review the thread- I don't recall being unduly harsh (at least in that one).

No worries. Don't sweat it. I let loose on Pahoran unfairly and it was a dark time in the history of all mankind.

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I appreciate your sentiments on mercy Laminite. I think love should always be a guiding principle in the use of priesthood. Even when one receives church disipline the welfair of the member should be a major concern. It's not merciful to leave unchecked a members pronouncments when the run counter the the revelations of God. I believe the Proclamtion on the Family to be such and Sister Pearson's is at great odds with this teaching. We have no way to know what council she has been receiving from her ward and stake leaders up to this time. I hope a considerable effort has been made, and if not that it will be soon. Sister Pearson because of her notoriety is in a position to do much that is good or evil. I hope she can be persueided to have a change of mind as to her beliefs on homosexuality. If unpersueided after loving council a lack of disiplinary action would seem neglectful.

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Are you saying no one should be excommunicated?
While God forgives, it is not that easy with men. Even though we know we should forgive, we all have our own demons to contend with. Hugh B. Brown was no doubt exceptional in this Christ-like manner, but unfortunately this exception does not extend to all.
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I would add that the thought of a lone woman sitting in front of twelve men for judgment just seems wrong to me. It would be unduly humiliating. Call me a feminist if you like, but it's just wrong.

I was under the impression those on trial can bring witnesses, support, etc.

How could twelve apostles sit in judgment of a person and come to different conclusions on their fate? Or do they all have to concur before the final judgment is passed? If the twelve apostles are going to judge Israel, do they get to pick which one judges them?

How? Because they're men. That's one reason there is 12, and yes, they must be agreed before a decision is ratified.

I have a feeling they won't really be doing the judging as much as we will.

While God forgives, it is not that easy with men. Even though we know we should forgive, we all have our own demons to contend with. Hugh B. Brown was no doubt exceptional in this Christ-like manner, but unfortunately this exception does not extend to all.

Yep. Some learn by experience, some never learn and some forgot what they learned.

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I've never had the experience of a church court (and hopefully never will :P ) So, what if eleven vote for excommunication and one doesn't?

I believe more than majority must rule, to be honest I have no interest in facing a Church court, and thus haven't made a point of getting all the logistics. I do know enough to know they don't publish proceedings, they allow you to bring witnesses, and half the body of men speaks in the acussed's behalf, the other half against. The decision I believe is then rendered by the presiding elder, and then sustained by the body. If the decision is contrary to what the accused belives, an appeal can be made to a higher court.

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The decision I believe is then rendered by the presiding elder, and then sustained by the body. If the decision is contrary to what the accused belives, an appeal can be made to a higher court.

So, the elders who vote contrary to the verdict must sustain the verdict or else....what happens if the one holdout won't? Also, are the minority elders expected to change their attitudes and give wholehearted support once they sustain the presiding elder's decision? Elder Brown's statement indicated that that isn't always the case. Obviously there will be a human element, but the apostles should be about "as good as it gets." (I think anyway...)

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My Mom, when she was serving as RS Pres, was asked by a sister to come with her in a Church court proceeding. My Mom was sworn to secrecy about everything and what not which is fair. That is all she told me about how everything went.

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Based on her comments in "The Mormons" documentary I'd say her version of events was either very out of the ordinary or greatly fabricated.

Or highly subjective, which I think is quite obvious. She was hurt emotionally in a huge way. Not saying its right or not right - just was her experience. I think it's undeniable that she feels very bad about what happened, and how it happened. I wouldn't call that 'fabricated' just because it wasn't objective.

HiJolly

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Or highly subjective, which I think is quite obvious. She was hurt emotionally in a huge way. Not saying its right or not right - just was her experience. I think it's undeniable that she feels very bad about what happened, and how it happened. I wouldn't call that 'fabricated' just because it wasn't objective.

HiJolly

I somewhat agree, though there were several procedural details she gave that were either against regulation, if you will, or invented.

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