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RIP Anti Mormon Literature


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25 minutes ago, Five Solas said:

"And so it goes" was a favored expression of author Kurt Vonnegut, appearing frequently in his books Mother Night  and Slaughterhouse Five.  But I'm guessing you must have picked it up elsewhere.  I don't think anyone could be a Vonnegut fan and be quite so intolerant of differing views as you, Scott. 

And if you think I don't see some humor in this--you're wrong.

:0)

--Erik

Actually, I got it from former NBC News anchorwoman Linda Ellerbee (probably before your time).

But here's a Wikipedia entry on the phrase giving several instances of its use, including songs by Billy Joel, Graham Nash and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band . As it happens Vonnegut's is not among them.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/And_So_It_Goes_(disambiguation)

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12 minutes ago, Scott Lloyd said:

An anti-Mormon pontificating about intolerance?

That's rich.

Even though I find LDS doctrines/theology incompatible with Christianity--I don't run around labeling LDS as anti-Christian.  Because such behavior wouldn't help--anyone.  And I don't think you labeling me helps you either. 

The last word here is yours, should you wish. 

--Erik

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4 minutes ago, Five Solas said:

Even though I find LDS doctrines/theology incompatible with Christianity--I don't run around labeling LDS as anti-Christian.  Because such behavior wouldn't help--anyone.  And I don't think you labeling me helps you either. 

The last word here is yours, should you wish. 

--Erik

Why thank you, kind sir.

Anti-Mormon means, quite plainly and literally, against or opposed to Mormonism. If you can honestly say that definition does not apply to you, and persuade me that you are sincere, I will readily retract it.

If it does apply to you, why, there you go. You should regard it as an apt characterization, if not a compliment. Wear it with pride, man. You've earned it.

 

Edited by Scott Lloyd
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Good afternoon all: I am a never-was-Mormon who attends sacrament, Sunday school, and Priesthood meetings on a semi-regular basis. I also am a Mennonite, evangelical and have never been anti-Mormon. I would like to offer you my own personal perspective on the question; my own experience - nothing more.

Sandra Tanner sat next to me at a meal at June's MHA meeting in St. Louis. Across from me sat a Franciscan Catholic priest. Next to him was an Episcopalian, next to her were two atheists, and on my other side was a famous faithful Mormon author. I knew I had seen the lady who sat next to me somewhere - I was probably the only person in the room who didn't immediately recognize Sandra Tanner! Ha!  I give you this seating arrangement to make a point - here at this one table at one event in the Mormon constellation sat the entire universe of Church history - the Anabaptist, the Protestant, the Catholic and the atheistic tradition - plus Sandra Tanner - not sure how to classify her. I guess she is an ex!? She certainly knew everyone and laughed and joked with the whole table. I told Mennonite jokes and was greeted with blank stares! Oh well! Why are Mennonites opposed to pre-marital sex? Because it leads to dancing! Ok, I'll move on!  I honestly believe Mormonism has changed more than evangelicals have changed and that is the reason there are fewer anti-Mormons.

LDS literature has changed dramatically. With faithful and touted Mormons writing books about the atonement and salvation that could have been written by Billy Graham, that is a change. I own and have read LDS doctrine books by Talmage, Roberts and McConkie. I also have Mormon doctrine books that have been written in the last fifteen years. They are in some ways as different as they are similar. The Shepherd brother's research on General Conference talks is fascinating. The changes seen in their content analysis over the decades are significant. A huge increase in talks about Jesus Christ and decrease in mention of Joseph Smith. The Mormon books being published now on Jesus Christ are absolutely evangelical. There is very little mention of exaltation - salvation, atonement, and redemption are emphasized. What is there to be anti in that?

I am accepted and welcomed in a Mormon ward. I am addressed as brother. I sit in Melchizedek classes with all the other old guys. I can sing, pray, testify, and take the sacrament. My LDS friends can't quite decide if I have all the gifts of the Holy Spirit available to me, they are trying to figure that out.  I do believe they believe I am a good man and a brother in Christ as is my wife who helps put diaper bags together and goes to book clubs. There is a temple ten minutes from my house. I have never been in it, but I know every Sunday they encourage folks to volunteer to do temple work. I wonder if that is on the decline? I don't ask.  We (my wife and I) host groups at our home to talk about the LDS history in our area. I just had an article initially approved for publication in the Journal of Mormon History next year. What is there for me to be anti? 

On the other hand, I just read a book by a LDS professor at a private non-LDS university who makes it clear he doesn't believe in the historicity of the BOM, or that the LDS church is the only true and living Church. Then he talks in the book about the joy he experiences in serving on his stake's high council and other ward callings. Was is there for me to be anti? 

Some of you may see what I am writing about as a decline and demise of LDS purity and specialness (I know that isn't a word). To me, as an evangelical it makes me feel welcomed and part of something I really respect and enjoy. I was baptized at 7 by immersion, I served a mission at 20 and had the elders including the bishop lay hands on me and anoint me with oil for service at 23.  My elders identified which gifts of the Holy Spirit they believe I have when I was set apart for service - none of that by a Mormon priesthood holder. I wouldn't change any of that.  Now at 68 years of age I fellowship, and yes, worship with dear Mormon friends. What in the world is there for me to be anti?  Thanks for letting me share. 

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On 8/26/2017 at 5:15 PM, Five Solas said:

Out of curiosity Scott - have you ever heard a criticism of the LDS Church you thought had merit?  An example where you thought the critic couldn't fairly be labeled a "zombie?" 

If yes--I'd be interested to know what & who it was. 

If no--your discerning readers might question who the real zombie is... 

;0)

--Erik

________________________________________________

I wanna burn the sky, I wanna burn the breeze
I wanna see the animals die in the trees
Oh let's go, let's go it's only 4 degrees

--Anohni, 2016

Curiously I wonder how you would answer that question as applied to you. For example, have you ever heard a criticism of the your Church/doctrine you thought had merit?

If yes--I'd be interested to know what & who it was. 

If no--your discerning readers might question who the real zombie is... 

 

Just sayin.

 

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2 hours ago, Navidad said:

Good afternoon all: I am a never-was-Mormon who attends sacrament, Sunday school, and Priesthood meetings on a semi-regular basis. I also am a Mennonite, evangelical and have never been anti-Mormon. I would like to offer you my own personal perspective on the question; my own experience - nothing more.

Sandra Tanner sat next to me at a meal at June's MHA meeting in St. Louis. Across from me sat a Franciscan Catholic priest. Next to him was an Episcopalian, next to her were two atheists, and on my other side was a famous faithful Mormon author. I knew I had seen the lady who sat next to me somewhere - I was probably the only person in the room who didn't immediately recognize Sandra Tanner! Ha!  I give you this seating arrangement to make a point - here at this one table at one event in the Mormon constellation sat the entire universe of Church history - the Anabaptist, the Protestant, the Catholic and the atheistic tradition - plus Sandra Tanner - not sure how to classify her. I guess she is an ex!? She certainly knew everyone and laughed and joked with the whole table. I told Mennonite jokes and was greeted with blank stares! Oh well! Why are Mennonites opposed to pre-marital sex? Because it leads to dancing! Ok, I'll move on!  I honestly believe Mormonism has changed more than evangelicals have changed and that is the reason there are fewer anti-Mormons.

LDS literature has changed dramatically. With faithful and touted Mormons writing books about the atonement and salvation that could have been written by Billy Graham, that is a change. I own and have read LDS doctrine books by Talmage, Roberts and McConkie. I also have Mormon doctrine books that have been written in the last fifteen years. They are in some ways as different as they are similar. The Shepherd brother's research on General Conference talks is fascinating. The changes seen in their content analysis over the decades are significant. A huge increase in talks about Jesus Christ and decrease in mention of Joseph Smith. The Mormon books being published now on Jesus Christ are absolutely evangelical. There is very little mention of exaltation - salvation, atonement, and redemption are emphasized. What is there to be anti in that?

I am accepted and welcomed in a Mormon ward. I am addressed as brother. I sit in Melchizedek classes with all the other old guys. I can sing, pray, testify, and take the sacrament. My LDS friends can't quite decide if I have all the gifts of the Holy Spirit available to me, they are trying to figure that out.  I do believe they believe I am a good man and a brother in Christ as is my wife who helps put diaper bags together and goes to book clubs. There is a temple ten minutes from my house. I have never been in it, but I know every Sunday they encourage folks to volunteer to do temple work. I wonder if that is on the decline? I don't ask.  We (my wife and I) host groups at our home to talk about the LDS history in our area. I just had an article initially approved for publication in the Journal of Mormon History next year. What is there for me to be anti? 

On the other hand, I just read a book by a LDS professor at a private non-LDS university who makes it clear he doesn't believe in the historicity of the BOM, or that the LDS church is the only true and living Church. Then he talks in the book about the joy he experiences in serving on his stake's high council and other ward callings. Was is there for me to be anti? 

Some of you may see what I am writing about as a decline and demise of LDS purity and specialness (I know that isn't a word). To me, as an evangelical it makes me feel welcomed and part of something I really respect and enjoy. I was baptized at 7 by immersion, I served a mission at 20 and had the elders including the bishop lay hands on me and anoint me with oil for service at 23.  My elders identified which gifts of the Holy Spirit they believe I have when I was set apart for service - none of that by a Mormon priesthood holder. I wouldn't change any of that.  Now at 68 years of age I fellowship, and yes, worship with dear Mormon friends. What in the world is there for me to be anti?  Thanks for letting me share. 

I was at that same conference. 

I didn't know Sandra Tanner was there. I've never met or even seen her in person, though I've heard of her for years. 

I got your Mennonite joke. I thought it was funny. 

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On July 17, 2017 at 2:54 PM, Duncan said:

it seems to me that 20 years ago it was other Churches against us and now it seems it's like that has tailed off and it's former members who've taken up the task, the Walter Martins and Ed Deckers have been replaced by Dehlin, Runnells et al.

Well "Matt Slick" is still around, in fact he has picked up the slack. But 20 years ago when the Church membership was growing at much higher rates, and projections by many outside the Church pointed to many, many millions by 2030, the argument was "numbers don't mean a Church is true or correct". Now that growth has slowed, they point to this as an "indicator that it is not true", while taking credit for the decline. In short, they can't lose the game, because they are constantly moving the goalposts. BTW, all such websites (many before they died) banned the word "anti-Mormon". Apparently they like many think today, that calling something by another name changes the fact of what it is. 

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4 hours ago, Vance said:

Curiously I wonder how you would answer that question as applied to you. For example, have you ever heard a criticism of the your Church/doctrine you thought had merit?

If yes--I'd be interested to know what & who it was. 

If no--your discerning readers might question who the real zombie is... 

 

Just sayin.

I think it's a completely reasonable thing to ask, Vance.  And I'm happy to share a couple of examples.  Keep in mind, an autonomous local Christian church won't generate the same sort of public scrutiny that a large entity can engender.  So I don't have any examples for you that have come to the attention of say, The Seattle Times.  These are simply observations individuals have made in the course of discussions I've been a part of in the past few years.  

1) The church isn't representative of the city.  It attracts the relatively affluent, especially folks who work at Amazon and other local tech companies.  There is some ethnic diversity, but if you want a real snapshot of the city, stand in the queue for driver's license renewal at the state's Department of Licensing on 2nd Avenue & Spring Street.  See the ethnic diversity surrounding you and hear many folks struggling with English when it's their turn at the front.  Our church doesn't look like that--not by a long shot. 

2) The church takes an overly simplistic view when it comes to addressing abortion.  It doesn't seek to engage or answer the real concern of pro-choice advocates, that legalized abortion levels the playing field between men and women and thereby promotes gender equality. 

Those are two examples that I've heard and believe have some merit.   

--Erik

PS.  "Just sayin'"?!? -- Really Vance, did you seriously think I'd behave like that other fellow, ignore the question and insult the questioner?  C'mon, man--give me a little credit.  I've been around a few years.  By now you must know me better than that.

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On 8/26/2017 at 3:15 PM, Five Solas said:

Out of curiosity Scott - have you ever heard a criticism of the LDS Church you thought had merit?  An example where you thought the critic couldn't fairly be labeled a "zombie?" 

If yes--I'd be interested to know what & who it was. 

If no--your discerning readers might question who the real zombie is... 

;0)

--Erik

________________________________________________

I wanna burn the sky, I wanna burn the breeze
I wanna see the animals die in the trees
Oh let's go, let's go it's only 4 degrees

--Anohni, 2016

Totally uncalled for personal attack

Ridiculous

Please take me on if you're going to pull that stuff- he is too nice.

And NO I have never heard a good criticism of the church.  Guess why?  I actually believe in it.  In fact it's the kind of thing only....... nevermind.

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On 8/28/2017 at 10:55 PM, mfbukowski said:

Totally uncalled for personal attack

Ridiculous

Please take me on if you're going to pull that stuff- he is too nice.

And NO I have never heard a good criticism of the church.  Guess why?  I actually believe in it.  In fact it's the kind of thing only....... nevermind.

I'm not sure how cautioning a poster he risks taring himself with the brush he would apply to others (his claim critics are "zombies" on previous page)--constitutes "personal attack."  Personal attacks really aren't something I'm much inclined to do, mfbukowski. 

I do find it interesting that many LDS believe any criticism of Mormonism (a system of religious beliefs - I'll avoid the word "theology" as I know you dislike it) constitutes an attack on people, i.e., Mormons.  To be opposed to a system is to be opposed to people.  It's how the previous poster justifies the label "anti-Mormon" for anyone who dares make a serious criticism of his religious worldview.

Of course, I find this belief odd and unhelpful. 

It would be interesting to know how many LDS here believe that no criticism of the LDS Church is ever valid.  Time permitting, I'll launch a poll.

--Erik

PS.  And the song I linked was inspired by his "BIH" comment.  Kinda fitting, don't you think?  And what a voice!

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2 hours ago, Five Solas said:

I'm not sure how cautioning a poster he risks taring himself with the brush he would apply to others (his claim critics are "zombies" on previous page)--constitutes "personal attack."  Personal attacks really aren't something I'm much inclined to do, mfbukowski. 

I do find it interesting that many LDS believe any criticism of Mormonism (a system of religious beliefs - I'll avoid the word "theology" as I know you dislike it) constitutes an attack on people, i.e., Mormons.  To be opposed to a system is to be opposed to people.  It's how the previous poster justifies the label "anti-Mormon" for anyone who dares make a serious criticism of his religious worldview.

Of course, I find this belief odd and unhelpful. 

It would be interesting to know how many LDS here believe that no criticism of the LDS Church is ever valid.  Time permitting, I'll launch a poll.

--Erik

PS.  And the song I linked was inspired by his "BIH" comment.  Kinda fitting, don't you think?  And what a voice!

Sorry I have been rather grumpy with you of late- I will try to do better

As for our theological differences, I am not sure those can be remedied. 

Edited by mfbukowski
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2 hours ago, Five Solas said:

I'm not sure how cautioning a poster he risks taring himself with the brush he would apply to others (his claim critics are "zombies" on previous page)--constitutes "personal attack."  Personal attacks really aren't something I'm much inclined to do, mfbukowski. 

I do find it interesting that many LDS believe any criticism of Mormonism (a system of religious beliefs - I'll avoid the word "theology" as I know you dislike it) constitutes an attack on people, i.e., Mormons.  To be opposed to a system is to be opposed to people.  It's how the previous poster justifies the label "anti-Mormon" for anyone who dares make a serious criticism of his religious worldview.

Of course, I find this belief odd and unhelpful. 

 

You are wrong.

This is how I justify it: The term Mormon could refer to the Mormon people or it could refer to the Mormon faith -- what you call the "system." Ergo, if you are opposed to either one, or if you are opposed to both, you are, by definition, anti-Mormon.

Edited by Scott Lloyd
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On 8/29/2017 at 0:09 AM, Five Solas said:

I think it's a completely reasonable thing to ask, Vance.  And I'm happy to share a couple of examples.  Keep in mind, an autonomous local Christian church won't generate the same sort of public scrutiny that a large entity can engender.  So I don't have any examples for you that have come to the attention of say, The Seattle Times.  These are simply observations individuals have made in the course of discussions I've been a part of in the past few years.  

1) The church isn't representative of the city.  It attracts the relatively affluent, especially folks who work at Amazon and other local tech companies.  There is some ethnic diversity, but if you want a real snapshot of the city, stand in the queue for driver's license renewal at the state's Department of Licensing on 2nd Avenue & Spring Street.  See the ethnic diversity surrounding you and hear many folks struggling with English when it's their turn at the front.  Our church doesn't look like that--not by a long shot. 

2) The church takes an overly simplistic view when it comes to addressing abortion.  It doesn't seek to engage or answer the real concern of pro-choice advocates, that legalized abortion levels the playing field between men and women and thereby promotes gender equality. 

Those are two examples that I've heard and believe have some merit.

Interestingly I find that neither one is a valid criticism of your church.

On 8/29/2017 at 0:09 AM, Five Solas said:

  --Erik

PS.  "Just sayin'"?!? -- Really Vance, did you seriously think I'd behave like that other fellow, ignore the question and insult the questioner?  C'mon, man--give me a little credit.  I've been around a few years.  By now you must know me better than that.

Because I do know you, that is exactly what I thought would happen.  You came close, by providing rather benign examples.  Therefore, I can't take you seriously.

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On ‎8‎/‎24‎/‎2017 at 3:30 PM, Scott Lloyd said:

...Jeremy Runnells "Letter to a CES Director" is merely an exasperating collection of Anti-Mormon zombie uprisings. There is nothing original or particularly thoughtful in it.

Thread derail pending....

Zombies are highly underrated.

Simply gotta give rep points to Stephanie's Zombie Song.

1.2.3...derail...

 

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21 hours ago, mfbukowski said:

Sorry I have been rather grumpy with you of late- I will try to do better

As for our theological differences, I am not sure those can be remedied. 

You know, a single glass of red wine in the evening can go a long way.  For you, I'd suggest a Russian River Pinot Noir--and there are some truly exceptional vintners in the Northern part of your fair state.  And as you enjoy God's goodness in the glass, you'll pause and reflect.  Perhaps our Lord's work at Cana will come into your mind (John 2) and you'll wish you could have been there, if only for an evening.  But regardless, you'll undoubtedly feel a bit better about me (and likely about people in general).  That, and light to moderate drinkers on average live longer than teetotalers--so you'll have that going for you.

;0)

Take care of yourself, mfbukowski

--Erik

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12 hours ago, Vance said:

Interestingly I find that neither one is a valid criticism of your church.

Because I do know you, that is exactly what I thought would happen.  You came close, by providing rather benign examples.  Therefore, I can't take you seriously.

I can assure you (and I'm probably in a much better position to judge) that the second one is more than a little controversial, especially for folks with a "complementarian" mindset. 

But if you were hoping I was going to dish the dirt on the pastor's wife or some such--then yeah, this was weak sauce, for sure.

How about you lead by example, Vance.  Are there any valid examples of criticism of the LDS Church that you can think of?  Or are you going to be joining the No-valid-criticism-of-the-LDS-Church-exists Club that we seem to have got started here?  I hear they're looking for a club treasurer...

;0)

--Erik

______________________________________________

It all seems so stupid
It makes me want to give up
But why should I give up
When it all seems so stupid

--Depeche Mode, 1983

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22 hours ago, Marginal Gains said:

Is missionary work then an example of anti-non-Mormonism?

 

I've dealt with this sort of question a number of times, but I'm happy to do it again.

Merely disbelieving in something is not the same as being anti- that thing. There is quite a bit that I disbelieve in in the tenets of the various sects of Christianity, for example, but I am not opposed to them. I am, if anything, indifferent toward them.

So, to deal with your question, if in the course of doing missionary work, we are promulgating our own beliefs, that is not the same as opposing other's beliefs.

Really, I'm puzzled that some seem to have such a hard time grasping this.

Quote

Is the shunning of people who have left the faith simply anti-exmormonism?

There may be anecdotal instances of Church members shunning ex-Mormons, but I personally am not aware of any. I certainly don't believe it is widespread, if such a thing exists at all. I do know that the doctrine of the Church is that we should "continue to minister" to those who have fallen away, to the extent that they will allow it.

On the other hand, what I often hear about is just the opposite of what you imply here: people who get crabby and nasty because home teachers and other members of the Church continue to contact or call on them.

 

Edited by Scott Lloyd
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2 hours ago, Scott Lloyd said:

I've dealt with this sort of question a number of times, but I'm happy to do it again.

Merely disbelieving in something is not the same as being anti- that thing. There is quite a bit that I disbelieve in in the tenets of the various sects of Christianity, for example, but I am not opposed to them. I am, if anything, indifferent toward them.

So, to deal with your question, if in the course of doing missionary work, we are promulgating our own beliefs, that is not the same as opposing other's beliefs.

Really, I'm puzzled that some seem to have such a hard time grasping this.

There may be anecdotal instances of Church members shunning ex-Mormons, but I personally am not aware of any. I certainly don't believe it is widespread, if such a thing exists at all. I do know that the doctrine of the Church is that we should "continue to minister" to those who have fallen away, to the extent that they will allow it.

On the other hand, what I often hear about is just the opposite of what you imply here: people who get crabby and nasty because home teachers and other members of the Church continue to contact or call on them.

 

I think people who have requested no contact, or who have made it clear they don’t want proselytising to, have a right to become crabby when their requests get ignored.

Edited by Marginal Gains
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5 hours ago, Marginal Gains said:

I think people who have requested no contact, or who have made it clear they don’t want proselytising to, have a right to become crabby when their requests get ignored.

And yet, most often, when asked if they would like their names removed from membership, thereby eliminating their so called irritants, they refuse.

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10 hours ago, Five Solas said:

I can assure you (and I'm probably in a much better position to judge) that the second one is more than a little controversial, especially for folks with a "complementarian" mindset. 

But if you were hoping I was going to dish the dirt on the pastor's wife or some such--then yeah, this was weak sauce, for sure.

How about you lead by example, Vance.  Are there any valid examples of criticism of the LDS Church that you can think of?  Or are you going to be joining the No-valid-criticism-of-the-LDS-Church-exists Club that we seem to have got started here?  I hear they're looking for a club treasurer...

;0)

--Erik

______________________________________________

It all seems so stupid
It makes me want to give up
But why should I give up
When it all seems so stupid

--Depeche Mode, 1983

Just like you, I haven't seen any "valid" criticisms of my church/doctrine.  I suppose, if I tried hard, I could come up with a couple of lame ones, just like you did.

Your attempts to show close mindedness have back fired.

 

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7 hours ago, Marginal Gains said:

I think people who have requested no contact, or who have made it clear they don’t want proselytising to, have a right to become crabby when their requests get ignored.

So do I. I think local units should be careful to avoid thus antagonizing people. Perhaps some have not been careful enough in the past.

But that's beside the point. It's pretty much the opposite of your implied accusation, isn't it? That the Church and its members "shun" those who fall away? Can you at least muster the humility and candor to admit that much?

Edited by Scott Lloyd
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13 hours ago, Five Solas said:

You know, a single glass of red wine in the evening can go a long way.  For you, I'd suggest a Russian River Pinot Noir--and there are some truly exceptional vintners in the Northern part of your fair state.  And as you enjoy God's goodness in the glass, you'll pause and reflect.  Perhaps our Lord's work at Cana will come into your mind (John 2) and you'll wish you could have been there, if only for an evening.  But regardless, you'll undoubtedly feel a bit better about me (and likely about people in general).  That, and light to moderate drinkers on average live longer than teetotalers--so you'll have that going for you.

;0)

Take care of yourself, mfbukowski

--Erik

I wonder how it would be viewed by an observant Orthodox Jew if you were to tell him how good it would be for him to enjoy "God's goodness" in the form of a thick, greasy, pork chop sandwich. I would view it as a mild expression of contempt for his religious faith. 

Edited by Scott Lloyd
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4 hours ago, Scott Lloyd said:

So do I. I think local units should be careful to avoid thus antagonizing people. Perhaps some have not been careful enough in the past.

But that's beside the point. It's pretty much the opposite of your implied accusation, isn't it? That the Church and its members "shun" those who fall away? Can you at least muster the humility and candor to admit that much?

Can you perceive a difference between requesting no proselytism from the Church, and being shunned by friends and family? 

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