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Church discipline proceedings on a member who no longer lives in the stake boundaries?


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25 minutes ago, rongo said:

I think the current handbook forbids anyone from taking notes (except for the clerk's notes, which are to be destroyed immediately after the form is filled out), which is kind of weird. I think anyone involved (including the subject) should reasonably be able to take notes. 

Closest thing to that is "No participant in a membership council is permitted to make an audio, video, or written recording. A clerk may take notes for the purpose of preparing the Report of Church Membership Council. However, such notes are not to be a word-for-word record or transcript. After the report is prepared, he promptly destroys any notes." and a bit later saying the clerk takes notes.

So I don't think others are specifically blocked from taking notes, however I would hope that any taken by the leaders would be brief enough that taking them wouldn't distract from the meeting.

Edited by JustAnAustralian
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For those who are wondering why Natasha would want to remain in a church she has utter contempt for: she has marketed herself to current and former Church members and leaders throughout her career. I would imagine this is going to be a hit to her pocketbook. Her public criticism of Church leaders will also be easier to ignore.

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1 hour ago, Bob Crockett said:

I've read Freud.  He's compelling except for the dream stuff. 

That's nice. I'm a therapist. Trust me, he's obsolete beyond popular references.

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5 minutes ago, Vellichor said:

I would imagine this is going to be a hit to her pocketbook.

Just as an FYI, it really hasn’t worked out that way for Delhin who was exed in 2015. Wiki reports:

In 2016 the Open Stories foundation reported Dehlin's 2017 salary and bonus was $82,500 and $27,000 respectively.[11]

In 2018 the Open Stories Foundation reported total compensation to Dehlin of over $226,000.[12]

In 2019 the Open Stories Foundation reported total compensation to Dehlin of over $236,000.[13]

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7 minutes ago, BlueDreams said:

That's nice. I'm a therapist. Trust me, he's obsolete beyond popular references.

He was considered obsolete back when I was in clinical psychology, in the 70’s and 80’s. 

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28 minutes ago, SeekingUnderstanding said:

Just as an FYI, it really hasn’t worked out that way for Delhin who was exed in 2015. Wiki reports:

When he's the only one getting paid by OSF, it's a lot easier for him to get a lot of money from it. I doubt he's going to want to split it 9 ways.

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9 hours ago, rongo said:
9 hours ago, HappyJackWagon said:

Oh...wow.

Did they tell her in advance to bring notes on something other than an electronic device? That seems reasonable for her to bring info/notes on her phone. I'm assuming they were trying to prevent her from recording the proceedings. I wonder if they asked her not to and she refused or if they just didn't believe her when she said she wouldn't.

So now she has to fly home and then do another round trip to Kansas for this spectacle? This whole thing is a fiasco.

I think the sureptitious recording concerns are valid. I would have allowed her time to write down her notes from her phone (or email the notes to someone to print out, or whatever). 

If she gave her word of honor that it wouldn't be recorded, and it is and is posted online, would that be a valid criticism of her and Dehlin (general question, not directly at you)? Or, would the ethics be flexible because it's a "speaking truth to power" scenario? 

I don't see why she would need to fly back to Utah. What is the online chatter revealing about this?

For those who hate the LDS Church, everything is a fiasco.  Moreover, since the LDS Church is evil, anything is moral -- including surreptitious recording.  I recall my friend, the Rev Wes Walters, secretly recording his conversation with Apostle LeGrand Richards, and then publishing it (with some dishonest editing).  The Tanners took him to task for that by phone, forcing him to apologize and to withdraw the publication.  However, by then the damage had been done.  People will find a way to justify anything, even when they know better.

"word of honor"?  8)

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57 minutes ago, JustAnAustralian said:

Closest thing to that is "No participant in a membership council is permitted to make an audio, video, or written recording. A clerk may take notes for the purpose of preparing the Report of Church Membership Council. However, such notes are not to be a word-for-word record or transcript. After the report is prepared, he promptly destroys any notes." and a bit later saying the clerk takes notes.

So I don't think others are specifically blocked from taking notes, however I would hope that any taken by the leaders would be brief enough that taking them wouldn't distract from the meeting.

I don't know whether they still do it in the Community of Christ (CoC), but years ago in the RLDS Church, whenever they held a trial, they had a certified court reporter take verbatim notes, and a copy of the transcript was available to the defendant.  I obtained a copy of one such trial (excommunciation) and eventually deposited it in the BYU Law Library, thinking that they might want to know how such religious trials are conducted  in other churches.  I was wrong.  The BYU Law School was so fearful of having such an untoward item in their collection, that they returned it to me.  8)

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2 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

The BYU Law School was so fearful of having such an untoward item in their collection, that they returned it to me. 

That's a shame. It'd be interesting to use in a comparison between Latter-day Saint Movement sects.

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4 hours ago, Calm said:

My memory says he also promised he was not recording, but did so anyway....but I may confusing him with Denson who made a big show of turning off her phone and even offered to place them outside the office, while she had another recording device recording everything when she visited Bishop’s ward.

The only way to prevent surreptitious recording is to have a high tech jamming device operative in the room.  No one needs to know that it is there, but it is very effective.

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6 minutes ago, JustAnAustralian said:

That's a shame. It'd be interesting to use in a comparison between Latter-day Saint Movement sects.

In some countries, like Israel and the Islamic states, religious courts are operative on a daily basis.  They control marriage, divorce, child custody, inheritance, and all other matters subject to religious law.  In Saudi Arabia, they are also used for criminal proceedings, and actual beheadings for adultery or other major crimes, and hand amputations for thieves take place just outside the mosque.

Edited by Robert F. Smith
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11 hours ago, Robert F. Smith said:

You have now lied about what I actually said twice, Harry.  At least you are consistent.  It is usually advisable to read what someone has actually said before lashing them with false claims.  Well, pettifogging makes short work of such ethical norms.

I think you used the sexual abuse "what if" question purposefully.  You know she is a sex therapist, accused of apostasy, not sexual abuse.  You don't know the entire story yet throw that out there recklessly.  Also, your resort to calling me a liar is a clear tell.

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Mercifully, it looks like Ms Helfer has decided to close her 'professional' Facebook page. I sincerely hope she gets the mental health help she needs.

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1 hour ago, BlueDreams said:

That's nice. I'm a therapist. Trust me, he's obsolete beyond popular references.

From one therapist to another, I disagree. 🙂

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1 hour ago, JustAnAustralian said:

Closest thing to that is "No participant in a membership council is permitted to make an audio, video, or written recording. A clerk may take notes for the purpose of preparing the Report of Church Membership Council. However, such notes are not to be a word-for-word record or transcript. After the report is prepared, he promptly destroys any notes." and a bit later saying the clerk takes notes.

Yes, that's it. "Written recording" is an interesting way to say "notes." 

Our notes (via the clerk, and ourselves) were close to a transcript, once reconstituted. They were only available once ordered through the Church. 

I always did the writing of the final report myself, not the clerk. 

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42 minutes ago, rongo said:

I always did the writing of the final report myself, not the clerk. 

The one I sat in on in a clerical capacity was the same. I typed my notes, emailed them to the Bishop, he said thank you, and that's the last I had anything to do with it. I'm actually surprised that clerks can do the report to be honest. Given that the presiding authority is the one in charge of what happens, I would have thought that he would always do it (and want to do it) himself.

Edited by JustAnAustralian
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7 hours ago, jkwilliams said:

It's par for the course for the long knives to come out when something like this happens. 

You're kidding right? These are self-inflicted wounds.

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53 minutes ago, rodheadlee said:

You're kidding right? These are self-inflicted wounds.

Mourn with those that mourn, right?

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On 4/15/2021 at 1:28 PM, Bob Crockett said:

I think that the general authorities can and do override these rules and direct where the proceedings are to occur.  Often disgruntled types (I'm not saying she is) like to make things difficult and move things around.  

I thought GAs did not get involved in councils like these? 😏

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On 4/15/2021 at 1:35 PM, ttribe said:

She has been on Mormon Stories this week, but I don't know that I would consider her "connected" to Dehlin (of whom I am not a fan) in any meaningful way.

Natasha is fairly close to John Dehlin. Why that should matter I do not know.

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On 4/15/2021 at 1:36 PM, ttribe said:

I don't get the impression, from listening to her, that she was attempting to circumvent the process through a technicality.

She wasn't.  It all seems pretty suspect and heavy handed to me.

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On 4/15/2021 at 1:48 PM, rongo said:

This is one of the reasons leaders can put a move restriction on a record. 

I was involved with a situation similar to this. It resulted in multiple conversations with the helpline, and the top Kirton-McConkie attorney there (he that hath ears to hear, let him hear! --- I don't want to mention the name) spanning several years --- including after I hadn't been a bishop for a couple of years (fact-finding, following up, having me call and talk to new bishops/stake presidents in a new state, etc.). 

I had recommended at the time that we put a move restriction to keep the record in our stake and administer the discipline, but the stake presidency didn't approve it, and then it became a mess once the record left for a ward/stake in another state. If there is a problem that needs to be taken care of with ecclesiastical authority, there can certainly be situations where it is best to do it where the people know the situation. This is particularly true where there are attempts to avoid discipline via moving, looking for friendlier/sympathetic leaders, etc. 

I know nothing about the case you are talking about in the OP, and don't have an opinion on that. 

Had her Kansas SP indicated she was potentially running afoul of things that would require an MC I could see it. He didn't.  Not at all while she lived in Kansas. Only well after she moved did he attempt to contact her about his concerns.

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6 hours ago, JustAnAustralian said:

The one I sat in on in a clerical capacity was the same. I typed my notes, emailed them to the Bishop, he said thank you, and that's the last I had anything to do with it. I'm actually surprised that clerks can do the report to be honest. Given that the presiding authority is the one in charge of what happens, I would have thought that he would always do it (and want to do it) himself.

I usually write it up and submit it to the Bishop and if he wants to make any edits he does and than it is sent off to Salt Lake. As soon as I can see the report has been received by Salt Lake I delete all the notes I took.

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7 hours ago, kllindley said:

From one therapist to another, I disagree. 🙂

Are you thinking of psychodynamic theory? 

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On 4/15/2021 at 1:51 PM, InCognitus said:

I don't have any handbook knowledge on what I'm about to say here, but it seems reasonable to me that if a ward and a stake have had an association with an individual that they believe should be considered in apostasy or they have done other things that would be grounds for excommunication, and that person moves to another ward or stake where there is no knowledge of the person's teachings or behavior, that it would be prudent for them to retain the person's records and act on the evidence they have.   Otherwise, a person would just need to move somewhere else anytime they are "caught".

I n this case Natasha Helfer is fairly public through social media and a podcast so her Utah leaders easily have stalked her to see it she was an evil apostate quite easily.

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