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2 hours ago, Derl Sanderson said:

2nd Class appears to be pretty upset, 

what am I upset about? 

("... when someone tells us not only are they a prophet seer and revelator, but they speak to god and are not to be criticized I expect them to at least not get fooled ...").   
 

What is wrong with that.? If one takes the position they speak for god, can’t be criticized or questioned well then they better be right. .
 

 I think we should expect at least a 2nd Class CFR. And for one seemingly so very interested in the topic, I suggest that credibility would be enhanced if we could at least get a correct spelling of the names of the current First Presidency Counselor as well as the forger/bomber himself.  
 

you did nothing to impact my credibility on the comment made by Oakes and no one cares about spellings of names. Most people who have read up on this topic at all have already read that talk and know exactly what I’m talking about. Didn’t feel the need to cite anything. Next time perhaps ask for the citation without doing it yourself. Make me do the work if you want to try and discredit me. 
 

 

I do know that in a speech  given at BYU August 6, 1987, then Elder Oaks said:

"As everyone now knows, Hofmann succeeded in deceiving many: experienced church historians, sophisticated collectors, businessmen-investors, national experts who administered a lie detector test to Hofmann, and professional document examiners, including the expert credited with breaking the Hitler diary forgery. But why, some still ask, were his deceits not detected by the several church leaders with whom he met?

In order to perform their personal ministries, church leaders cannot be suspicious and questioning of each of the hundreds of people they meet each year. Ministers of the gospel function best in an atmosphere of trust and love.

In that kind of atmosphere, they fail to detect a few deceivers, but that is the price they pay to increase their effectiveness in counseling, comforting and blessing the hundreds of honest and sincere people they see. It is better for a church leader to be occasionally disappointed than to be constantly suspicious."

I can live with that explanation.

something is wrong when we expect more perfection of our nations police officers than we do the leaders of our church

 

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8 hours ago, Robert F. Smith said:

... Quite right, as several scholars have commented many years ago (myself included).  The work of the Tanners to destroy the LDS Church actually greatly strengthened it.

 

From my perspective as just some guy in the pews who read a fair amount of the Tanners' work, it seems to me that a tipping point was reached when the scholars began turning their attention to what the Tanners were doing. Prior to the scholars' interest, Sandra created a narrative that her and Jerald's critiques were unassailable. She would gloat that no general authority of the Church ever responded to their appraisals because none could (though an alternative might be that their ministries involve something more substantive and in need of their attention than do two "career apostates"). At any rate, that all seemed to change when the scholars became interested in answering. Judging by Sandra's reaction, her serenity was greatly upset by the focus her "ministry" was now receiving from those who were highly qualified to respond. That episode is when I first became aware of the old FARMS Review, which blessed my life and enhanced my understanding significantly. Many thanks to Kevin for providing links to a number of those essays. I was not aware that they are available now at BOM Central. 

Edited by Derl Sanderson
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I think for me what the Tanners and other critics do is rightly point out that we are all human and perhaps God isn't as involved as we would like to believe.  This is by design.  We are here to find out a lot of things for ourselves through trial and error, paying attention to mistakes made by others so we can avoid them too.  Perhaps our leaders were tricked by a clever forger that God would have obviously discovered, but, if God inserted himself into every little thing or big thing, then wouldn't that diminish our chances for improvement?  A child must leave his/her parents and go out and find their way.  Parents are still there for advice but helicopter parenting doesn't work.

Regardless, in the end, critics may find that past claims made might not be as great as advertised, but, the spirit is still there.

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1 hour ago, Derl Sanderson said:

From my perspective as just some guy in the pews who read a fair amount of the Tanners' work, it seems to me that a tipping point was reached when the scholars began turning their attention to what the Tanners were doing. Prior to the scholars' interest, Sandra created a narrative that her and Jerald's critiques were unassailable. She would gloat that no general authority of the Church ever responded to their appraisals because none could (though an alternative might be that their ministries involve something more substantive and in need of their attention than do two "career apostates"). At any rate, that all seemed to change when the scholars became interested in answering. Judging by Sandra's reaction, her serenity was greatly upset by the focus her "ministry" was now receiving from those who were highly qualified to respond. That episode is when I first became aware of the old FARMS Review, which blessed my life and enhanced my understanding significantly. Many thanks to Kevin for providing links to a number of those essays. I was not aware that they are available now at BOM Central. 

When I responded privately in detail to the Tanners and Marquardt in the mid-70s, they had nothing to say in response, although Sandra was always cordial with me.

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23 hours ago, Harry T. Clark said:

 

I think for me what the Tanners and other critics do is rightly point out that we are all human and perhaps God isn't as involved as we would like to believe

 

Exactly. When leadership mandates they are exempt from criticism they by default are saying they are perfect. Esp  when coupled with the concept of them being guided by God. 
 

 

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14 hours ago, smac97 said:

This is simply not so.  

First, the prophets have consistently rejected the idea or claim that "they are perfect."  FAIR has a nice list of such statements here, and a more detailed summary of the teachings of the Church on this point here.

Second, you are imputing onto the leaders of the Church a position they have expressly and repeatedly rejected.

Third, then-Elder Dallin H. Oaks wrote an excellent article on the subject of criticism in 1987.  Here is a link.  Very much worth a read.  Some excerpts:

Thanks,

-Smac

Ok got it. So if it is so cut and dry how come I can’t even get an area authority to meet with me after several requests? They refuse to address the issue. And in this case I am accusing a stake president of some very over the top unrighteous dominion over his counselors and they have garbage canned every single letter. They are not accountable to anyone and they use this policy to suppress dissent. Even if it is true. We will just have to agree to disagree. 

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7 hours ago, secondclasscitizen said:

Ok got it. So if it is so cut and dry

I'm not stating an opinion.  I'm stating fact.  The leaders of the Church have never claimed to be perfect/infallible, and have instead consistently rejected and disclaimed that idea.  

I have long found this quote from Pres. Brigham Young to be illuminating:

Quote

What a pity it would be if we were led by one man to utter destruction! Are you afraid of this? I am more afraid that this people have so much confidence in their leaders that they will not inquire for themselves of God whether they are led by Him. I am fearful they settle down in a state of blind self-security, trusting their eternal destiny in the hands of their leaders with a reckless confidence that in itself would thwart the purposes of God in their salvation, and weaken that influence they could give to their leaders, did they know for themselves, by the revelations of Jesus, that they are led in the right way. Let every man and woman know, by the whispering of the Spirit of God to themselves, whether their leaders are walking in the path the Lord dictates, or not. This has been my exhortation continually.

And this one from Elder Packer:

Quote

Latter-day Saints are not obedient because they are compelled to be obedient. They are obedient because they know certain spiritual truths and have decided, as an expression of their own individual agency, to obey the commandments of God.... Those who talk of blind obedience may appear to know many things, but they do not understand the doctrines of the gospel. There is an obedience that comes from a knowledge of the truth that transcends any external form of control. We are not obedient because we are blind, we are obedient because we can see.

And this one from Elder Talmage:

Quote

The same principle applies to persons and to the Church as a whole today. God has not established His Church to make of its members irresponsible automatons, nor to exact from them blind obedience. Albeit, blessed is the man who, while unable to fathom or comprehend in full the Divine purpose underlying commandment and law, has such faith as to obey. So did Adam in offering sacrifice, yet, when questioned as to the significance of his service, he answered with faith and assurance worthy the patriarch of the race: "I know not, save the Lord commanded me."

And this one from Pres. Joseph Fielding Smith:

Quote

“It makes no difference what is written or what anyone has said, if what has been said is in conflict with what the Lord has revealed, we can set it aside. My words, and the teaching of any other member of the Church, high or low, if they do not square with the revelations, we need not accept them. Let us have this matter clear. We have accepted the four standard works as the measuring yardsticks, or balances, by which we measure every man’s doctrine."

And this one from Pres. Nelson:

Quote

Give your leaders a little leeway to make mistakes, as you hope your leaders will give you a little leeway to profit by your errors.

And this from D&C 88:118:

Quote

And as all have not faith, seek ye diligently and teach one another words of wisdom; yea, seek ye out of the best books words of wisdom; seek learning, even by study and also by faith.

 I greatly value the exhortations to A) listen to and follow the counsel of the prophets and apostles, B) seek out and rely on inspiration from the Holy Spirit, and C) study the scriptures and the "best books."  I think it becomes difficult to go too far off track when all of these resources are used in tandem with each other.

7 hours ago, secondclasscitizen said:

how come I can’t even get an area authority to meet with me after several requests?

This seems like something of a non-sequitur.  That you have not been able to secure a meeting with an area authority is quite a different issue from your incorrect declaration that the leaders of the Church claim infallibility.

7 hours ago, secondclasscitizen said:

They refuse to address the issue.

Who is "they," and what is the "issue?"

7 hours ago, secondclasscitizen said:

And in this case I am accusing a stake president of some very over the top unrighteous dominion over his counselors and they have garbage canned every single letter.

A few questions:

1. Do you have evidence of this "unrighteous dominion?"  Specific, quantifiable evidence?  Percipient witness testimony?  Documentary evidence?  

2. Have you provided this evidence to the Area Authority?

3. How do you know that your letters have not resulted in or contributed to an inquiry by the area authority?

4. How do you know "they have garbage canned every single letter?"

5. Why is it imperative that you meet in person with an area authority?  What is it that you have to say that must be said in person rather than in a letter?

6. Would your in-person meeting simply duplicate what you have said in your letters?

7. Were your letters reasoned, calm, charitable and evidence-based?

8. What are your thoughts about the 1987 article I pointed to, the one authored by then-Elder Oaks?  Here's the main bits:

Quote

The first principle in the gospel procedure for managing differences is to keep our personal differences private. 
...
There are at least five different procedures a Church member can follow in addressing differences with Church leaders—general or local, male or female.

The first—and most benign—of the procedures is to overlook the difference.
...
A second option is to reserve judgment and postpone any action on the difference. In many instances, the actions we are tempted to criticize may be based on confidences that preclude the leader from explaining his or her actions publicly. In such instances there is wisdom in a strategy of patience and trust.

The third procedure, which should be familiar to every student of the Bible, is to take up our differences privately with the leader involved. The Savior taught: “If thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.” (Matt. 18:15.)
...
A fourth option is to communicate with the Church officer who has the power to correct or release the person thought to be in error or transgression. The Bible calls this “tell[ing] it unto the church.” (Matt. 18:17.)
...
There is a fifth remedy. We can pray for the resolution of the problem. We should pray for the leader whom we think to be in error, asking the Lord to correct the circumstance if it needs correction. At the same time, we should pray for ourselves, asking the Lord to correct us if we are in error.

It sounds like you have pursued the fourth procedure and written letters to the area authority.  I commend you for that. But consider this portion of Elder Oaks' article:

Quote

President John Taylor described these last two remedies {the third and fourth procedures} when he taught how we should sustain a leader:

“But supposing he should … be found lying or cheating, or defrauding somebody; or stealing or anything else, or even become impure in his habits, would you still sustain him? It would be my duty then to talk with him as I would with anybody else, and tell him that I had understood that things were thus and so, and that under these circumstances I could not sustain him; and if I found that I had been misinformed I would withdraw the charge; but if not it would then be my duty to see that justice was administered to him, that he was brought before the proper tribunal to answer for the things he had done; and in the absence of that I would have no business to talk about him.” (Journal of Discourses, 21:207–8.)

Have you pursued the third procedure?  Have you spoken with or written to the stake president about his purported misconduct?  If not, why not?

What about the second procedure? Are you able to "reserve judgment and postpone any action on the difference?"

What about the fifth procedure?  "We can pray for the resolution of the problem. We should pray for the leader whom we think to be in error, asking the Lord to correct the circumstance if it needs correction. At the same time, we should pray for ourselves, asking the Lord to correct us if we are in error."

The procedures outlined above are not mutually exclusive.  They can be progressive.  They can be mixed and matched.  

7 hours ago, secondclasscitizen said:

They are not accountable to anyone

That is simply not so.

7 hours ago, secondclasscitizen said:

and they use this policy to suppress dissent.

Again, what are your thoughts about the article by Elder Oaks?  Particularly as it pertains to the differentiation between dissent as to political leaders and dissent as to leaders in the Church?

7 hours ago, secondclasscitizen said:

Even if it is true.

What are you referencing here?  Even if what is true?

7 hours ago, secondclasscitizen said:

We will just have to agree to disagree. 

I hope you give this matter some further study and effort.  

I have been fortunate to have had wonderful local leaders.  I have lived in the same ward for 15 years, through three stake presidents and four bishops.  These men, though far from perfect, are generally kind and decent and diligent in their efforts to fulfill their leadership responsibilities.

It has not always been so.  I had one bishop who did something quite wrong.  He chewed out a young man.  During a church meeting.  In front of the young man's friends and peers.  And he (the bishop) was pretty mean about it.  It was pretty clear he had intended to humiliate the boy.  

I was pretty young at the time, and the deacon's quorum advisor.  I had never experienced such misconduct before.  And to my great regret, I did nothing about it.  In retrospect, I should have spoken with the bishop privately about it, and/or spoken with the stake president about it.  I could also have spoken to the young man separately and offered friendship and support.  I could have tactfully notified his parents about what had happened.  I did none of these things.  I regret that.

In the end, I lacked stewardship and authority to discipline or censure the bishop.  But I could have done things that I did not, and then left the matter to those in authority and to the Lord.

Thanks,

-Smac

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9 hours ago, secondclasscitizen said:

Ok got it. So if it is so cut and dry how come I can’t even get an area authority to meet with me after several requests? They refuse to address the issue. And in this case I am accusing a stake president of some very over the top unrighteous dominion over his counselors and they have garbage canned every single letter. They are not accountable to anyone and they use this policy to suppress dissent. Even if it is true. We will just have to agree to disagree.

It is useless to claim fallibility when public expression of it are punished with excommunication labeled as apostacy.

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Posted (edited)

Our public ritual of "sustaining" our leaders and preposes that we know what "sustain" actually means and that we allow the full range of meaning to inform both our consent and our actions.   

1.  To keep up; keep going; maintain. Aid, assist, comfort.
2.  to supply as with food or provisions:
3.  to hold up; support
4.  to bear; endure
5.  to suffer; experience: to sustain a broken leg.
6.  to allow; admit; favor
7.  to agree with; confirm.

For the LDS assembly to function, we need to put up with one another.   Now while I know of the occasional exceptional case where a leader's behavior has negatively affected the life of a family member, to the point where that person no longer attends meetings and refuses to pay tithing, my covenant to "sustain" means that that leader's choices, which included claiming unquestionable inspiration behind the choice that catalyzed that particular disruption to people I love,  means that my job is to put up with the crap, and not let if affect my testimony, my behavior.  This is not unreasonable.  There is a passage in the Changing World of Mormonism where they express their foundational premise that, if Mormons are God's true church then they should be better than everyone else all the time.  D&C 1 bluntly undercuts that foundational premise.   So, in my own LDS experience, what does one puffed up, insecure person in another stake have to do with whether I believe that Jesus is the Christ and more importantly, the personal experiences over many years that support that belief?  What does it have to do with whether I believe that Joseph Smith was a prophet, and more importantly, why I believe it?  What has it got to do with whether I believe the Book of Mormon is authentic revelatory scripture about real people and events, and more importantly, why I believe it?  That one man in another stake, who certainly meant well, made decisions that I personally disagree with, does not for me provide the kind of leverage that Aristotle referred to when he said, "Give me a lever and a place to stand, and I can move the world."   I am not ignoring what this person did and said.  I cannot do so because it continues to have an effect within my extended family.  I do not endorse what this person did and said.  But it does not in anyway affect my own testimony and covenants.   It is something that I endure, that I experience, that I allow.  It is consistent with what I see 12 Step Recovery, of the importance of checking first on the beams in my own eye, that I might see clearly.  Of dismantling my own grievance stories.  I notice in every seasonal watching of It's a Wonderful Life, that the difference between the frustrated and bitter George Bailey whose life is a living hell from which he longs to escape, and the one who realizes that he has lived a wonderful life, is completely based on whether he focuses on his personal frustration with not always being able to "Do what I want to do!" and whether he focuses on the significance of his relationships.  George Bailey's frustrations do not disappear when he looks at the big picture with an enlarged soul, and pure knowledge, but their relative significance does radically change.  He can endure, suffer, and allow those things that frustrate him.   And those responses by George Bailey are consonant with the rich definition of "sustain."   My reading of the scriptures does not lead me to believe or expect that every member is going always do and say things that I agree with.   My reading of the scriptures does, however, deeply enlighten my understanding of what it means to sustain another.

FWIW.

Kevin Christensen

Canonsburg, PA

Edited by Kevin Christensen
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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, CA Steve said:

It is useless to claim fallibility when public expression of it are punished with excommunication labeled as apostacy.

It takes a lot more than simple public expression of an accusation of error to be excommunicated generally speaking.

I used “generally” as I accept that local leaders might over react at times.  From what I have seen it takes years of publicly accusing the Church leaders of lying or other errors, teaching false doctrine, etc, to get to that point.

Edited by Calm
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2 hours ago, Calm said:

From what I have seen it takes years of publicly accusing the Church leaders of lying or other errors, teaching false doctrine, etc, to get to that point.

The problem in this example is nowhere do we ever see the Church admit to errors and while it may take years to actually excommunicate someone in this example, never do we see the Church come out and admit fault or error. If the Church actually believes in fallibility, where have they admitted such regarding decisions made by living leaders?

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4 hours ago, Kevin Christensen said:

 It is a bunch of people with all their splendor, squalor, flaws, virtues, and variety. 

When I grow up I want to be able to write like you.  Amazing work!

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19 hours ago, CA Steve said:

The problem in this example is nowhere do we ever see the Church admit to errors and while it may take years to actually excommunicate someone in this example, never do we see the Church come out and admit fault or error. If the Church actually believes in fallibility, where have they admitted such regarding decisions made by living leaders?

I’m pretty sure Elder Oaks came out and publicly said that the church does not ask for nor ever give apologies for anything or something to that effect. I don’t know sounds to me like they don’t ever mess up at least in their own minds

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On 5/5/2021 at 7:31 AM, smac97 said:

I'm not stating an opinion.  I'm stating fact.  The leaders of the Church have never claimed to be perfect/infallible, and have instead consistently rejected and disclaimed that idea.  

I have long found this quote from Pres. Brigham Young to be illuminating:

And this one from Elder Packer:

And this one from Elder Talmage:

And this one from Pres. Joseph Fielding Smith:

And this one from Pres. Nelson:

And this from D&C 88:118:

 I greatly value the exhortations to A) listen to and follow the counsel of the prophets and apostles, B) seek out and rely on inspiration from the Holy Spirit, and C) study the scriptures and the "best books."  I think it becomes difficult to go too far off track when all of these resources are used in tandem with each other.

This seems like something of a non-sequitur.  That you have not been able to secure a meeting with an area authority is quite a different issue from your incorrect declaration that the leaders of the Church claim infallibility.

Who is "they," and what is the "issue?"

A few questions:

1. Do you have evidence of this "unrighteous dominion?"  Specific, quantifiable evidence?  Percipient witness testimony?  Documentary evidence?  

2. Have you provided this evidence to the Area Authority?

3. How do you know that your letters have not resulted in or contributed to an inquiry by the area authority?

4. How do you know "they have garbage canned every single letter?"

5. Why is it imperative that you meet in person with an area authority?  What is it that you have to say that must be said in person rather than in a letter?

6. Would your in-person meeting simply duplicate what you have said in your letters?

7. Were your letters reasoned, calm, charitable and evidence-based?

8. What are your thoughts about the 1987 article I pointed to, the one authored by then-Elder Oaks?  Here's the main bits:

It sounds like you have pursued the fourth procedure and written letters to the area authority.  I commend you for that. But consider this portion of Elder Oaks' article:

Have you pursued the third procedure?  Have you spoken with or written to the stake president about his purported misconduct?  If not, why not?

What about the second procedure? Are you able to "reserve judgment and postpone any action on the difference?"

What about the fifth procedure?  "We can pray for the resolution of the problem. We should pray for the leader whom we think to be in error, asking the Lord to correct the circumstance if it needs correction. At the same time, we should pray for ourselves, asking the Lord to correct us if we are in error."

The procedures outlined above are not mutually exclusive.  They can be progressive.  They can be mixed and matched.  

That is simply not so.

Again, what are your thoughts about the article by Elder Oaks?  Particularly as it pertains to the differentiation between dissent as to political leaders and dissent as to leaders in the Church?

What are you referencing here?  Even if what is true?

I hope you give this matter some further study and effort.  

I have been fortunate to have had wonderful local leaders.  I have lived in the same ward for 15 years, through three stake presidents and four bishops.  These men, though far from perfect, are generally kind and decent and diligent in their efforts to fulfill their leadership responsibilities.

It has not always been so.  I had one bishop who did something quite wrong.  He chewed out a young man.  During a church meeting.  In front of the young man's friends and peers.  And he (the bishop) was pretty mean about it.  It was pretty clear he had intended to humiliate the boy.  

I was pretty young at the time, and the deacon's quorum advisor.  I had never experienced such misconduct before.  And to my great regret, I did nothing about it.  In retrospect, I should have spoken with the bishop privately about it, and/or spoken with the stake president about it.  I could also have spoken to the young man separately and offered friendship and support.  I could have tactfully notified his parents about what had happened.  I did none of these things.  I regret that.

In the end, I lacked stewardship and authority to discipline or censure the bishop.  But I could have done things that I did not, and then left the matter to those in authority and to the Lord.

Thanks,

-Smac

Well I know they haven’t addressed the issue nor investigated it because they don’t actually know what the issue is. I provided nominal information just enough for them to get their radar on that something bad is happened and that I’d be willing to share it in person but they refused to meet with me. Every time a bishop tells me they have the information I will be calling me they never call it’s been over a year now.

as for evidence I am one of the witnesses and Another witness who told me about it unwittingly confirm the information I needed to know. Let us just say the rest of the “Witnesses “are actually participants who more than likely participated under some form of ecclesiastical to Duress. 
 

I’m not gonna provide too many details Here because with enough details the church can decipher who’s on here slamming them and then it makes it back to my family. Let me just say that my family name is extremely common in the church like many here on this board. I’ve been embedded in this church political crap for my entire life and I know through personal experience that the way to church likes best deal problems is to stick their head in the sand and ignore it. Absent me going to the media about it nobody’s ever going to know if they do or don’t look into it. Let me put it like this. This story would probably end up being number one in the Mormon stories podcast for a long long time.

edited for voice text errors. 5/6/21

 

Edited by secondclasscitizen
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Just now, secondclasscitizen said:

Well I know they haven’t addressed the issue nor investigated it because they don’t actually know what the issue is. I provided nominal information just enough for them to get their radar on that something bad is happened and that I’d be willing to share it in person but they refused to meet with me. Every time a bishop tells me they have the information I will be calling me they never call it’s been over a year now.

as for evidence I am one of the witnesses and Another witness who told me about it unwittingly confirm the information I needed to know. Let us just say the rest of the “Witnesses “are actually participants who more than likely participated under some form of ecclesiastical to Duress. 
 

I’m not gonna provide too many details Here because with enough details the church to decipher who’s on here slamming them and our cars below back to my family. Let me just say that my family name is extremely common in the church like many here on this board. I’ve been in bedded in this church political crap for my entire lifeAnd I know through personal experience that the way to church likes best deal problems as a stick their head in the sand and ignore it. Absent me going to the media about it nobody’s ever going to know if they do or don’t look into it. Let me put it like this. This story would probably end up being number one in the Mormon stories podcast for a long long time.

For some reason I cannot edit my post. Excuse the crazy punctuation and wording of some things I’m using voice text.

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19 hours ago, Kevin Christensen said:

This sort of thinking anthropomorphizes the institution as a single entity, which it is not.

I agree but my response was directed at arguments that I felt indicated that "the leaders of the Church" never claimed infallibility. So your point applies to them as much as anything.

Edited by CA Steve
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1 hour ago, secondclasscitizen said:

I’m pretty sure Elder Oaks came out and publicly said that the church does not ask for nor ever give apologies for anything or something to that effect. I don’t know sounds to me like they don’t ever mess up at least in their own minds

I don't think that is the reason. I do believe they know they make mistakes but I think it is important that to them to not admit them for some reason.

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33 minutes ago, secondclasscitizen said:

Well I know they haven’t addressed the issue nor investigated it because they don’t actually know what the issue is. I provided nominal information just enough for them to get their radar on that something bad is happened and that I’d be willing to share it in person but they refused to meet with me.

Okay.  Why hide the ball?  Why not just tell them?

33 minutes ago, secondclasscitizen said:

Every time a bishop tells me they have the information I will be calling me they never call it’s been over a year now.

Well, they should, particularly if they keep saying they are going to.

I think some, perhaps even many, local leaders, are like Rex from Toy Story:

images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSm5gdbnIzwxc1QbOxyADZ

This is understandable and human, but working out problems is part of the gig.

That said, your local leaders may not understand the severity of the situation because you have not shared it. 

That you are withholding information because you want to share it in person may also be construed as a desire to be confrontational.  I'm not saying such a surmise is accurate or fair, but it could be sidestepped by you just sharing the information you have and then letting them deal with it.

33 minutes ago, secondclasscitizen said:

as for evidence I am one of the witnesses and Another witness who told me about it unwittingly confirm the information I needed to know. Let us just say the rest of the “Witnesses “are actually participants who more than likely participated under some form of ecclesiastical to Duress. 

Not sure what you are referencing here.  And I don't think I should know.

My two bits: Stop hiding the ball.  Write a letter to the stake president and the area authority laying out what you witnessed and expressing your concern.  Avoid personal opining, speculation and innuendo.  Avoid passing judgment on the bishop.  And don't tell them what they should do in response to the allegations.

33 minutes ago, secondclasscitizen said:

I’m not gonna provide too many details Here because with enough details the church to decipher who’s on here slamming them and our cars below back to my family.

Not sure what this means.  But in any event, I think it is better to not provide details here.  

33 minutes ago, secondclasscitizen said:

Let me just say that my family name is extremely common in the church like many here on this board. I’ve been in bedded in this church political crap for my entire life

Not sure what this means.

33 minutes ago, secondclasscitizen said:

And I know through personal experience that the way to church likes best deal problems as a stick their head in the sand and ignore it.

I think you would be surprised at how often the Church addresses problems.  It happens quite a bit in my experience.  There are obviously some very real constraints on what the Church can to to "deal {with} problems."  It is not a governmental agency.  It has no meaningful investigative apparatus, and no law enforcement authority.  It's a private religious association.

I agree with the sentiment that the Church should address problems that arise within its sphere and purview.  To do that, it needs information.  It cannot extract that information through force or compulsion, and has no desire to do so.  So if an individual member of the Church has information about a problem pertaining to the Church, such as misconduct by a local leader, that member can and should disclose that information to the Church so it can address the issue.

If the issue you are describing is so serious, why sit on the information about it for "over a year?"  Could you see how how the urgency and seriousness of the problem might not realized by your local leaders if you refuse to communicate it over a prolonged period of time?  Could you also see that adopting an "I will only tell you if I get a face-to-face with an area authority" approach for "over a year" might come across . . . badly?  That it might make you look like you are spoiling for a confrontation?  That you have some sort of vendetta?

Conversely, you could write a letter to the stake president (and area authority, if you feel so inclined) that lays out your concerns and the evidence you have.  You could ask them to consider the matters you have disclosed.  Then . . . leave it to them.

33 minutes ago, secondclasscitizen said:

Absent me going to the media about it nobody’s ever going to know if they do or don’t look into it.

I don't understand.  Do you think the general public should know about these things?  

33 minutes ago, secondclasscitizen said:

Let me put it like this. This story would probably end up being number one in the Mormon stories podcast for a long long time.

I don't see much value in publicizing misconduct by a local ecclesiastical leader.  If there is something illegal (criminal) going on, then that should likely be addressed by law enforcement.  Otherwise, importing Cancel Culture-style tactics into the Church is not a good idea.  If a local leader screws up, he needs to have space to make things right.  He needs some patience and accommodation.  He needs some grace.

Being a bishop or a stake president is pretty challenging.  Time-wise it's often equivalent to a part-time, or even full-time, job.  And that time is spent away from family and friends, away from hobbies and exercise and relaxation and quiet personal time.  And there is no pay.  And it lasts quite a while, typically five years for a bishop and nine for a stake president.  It is a genuine and meaningful consecration of time and effort and emotional energy.

That said, if a local leader messes up in some material respect, I think Elder Oaks' counsel in the 1987 article I referenced earlier can and should be put to use.  If you have information about misconduct, write a letter and disclose it to those who are in authority over that individual, and then pray that the matter will be handled appropriately and wisely.

Thanks,

-Smac

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1 hour ago, secondclasscitizen said:

I’m pretty sure Elder Oaks came out and publicly said that the church does not ask for nor ever give apologies for anything or something to that effect.

Well, let's take a look at what he actually said:

Quote

LDS apostle Dallin H. Oaks set off a global chain reaction among Mormons this week, when he said he wasn't sure apologizing for the faith's past rhetoric on homosexuality would be advisable.

"I know that the history of the church is not to seek apologies or to give them," Oaks said in an interview Tuesday. "We sometimes look back on issues and say, 'Maybe that was counterproductive for what we wish to achieve,' but we look forward and not backward."

The church doesn't "seek apologies," he said, "and we don't give them."
...
Salt Lake City lawyer Steve Evans, writing on the Mormon blog By Common Consent, took up the question of institutional LDS apologies.

"We've come close," Evans wrote. "Pastor Cecil Murray received a personal apology from President Gordon B. Hinckley for the church's participation in slavery and racism. In 2007, Elder Henry B. Eyring offered words of apology on behalf of church members at a memorial service for victims of the 1857 Mountain Meadows Massacre. The church also issued a public apology for performing baptisms for the dead on behalf of victims of the Holocaust."

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints doesn't apologize for "doctrines," the blogger noted. "Doctrines come from God; they don't change and we do not make excuses for them."

Everything else is "human," Evans wrote. "I think we can apologize, and have apologized, for messing things up and figuring things out as we go, and we do that once in a while."

Several By Common Consent commenters echoed that sentiment.

Context sure helps a bit.

1 hour ago, secondclasscitizen said:

I don’t know sounds to me like they don’t ever mess up at least in their own minds

You are decontextualizing one quote from one General Authority, imputing your personal gloss and spin and hostile interpretation on it, and are privileging that interpretation to the exclusion of what many General Authorities have said throughout the history of the Church.

This is neither accurate nor fair.

Thanks,

-Smac

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On 5/5/2021 at 8:31 AM, smac97 said:

This seems like something of a non-sequitur.  That you have not been able to secure a meeting with an area authority is quite a different issue from your incorrect declaration that the leaders of the Church claim infallibility.

Area Seventy, not area authority. 

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