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Converted to Mormonism in HS in the 70’s. Was on a mission when Spencer Kimball had the revelation that blacks could now hold the priesthood. Was already having a lot of doubts at that time that are mentioned in your video. I care very much for LDS people but not for the mormon doctrine etc.. God led me out of the mormon church while still on my mission.
I am hoping to quote from your survey for a book I am writing. Should I cite any authors, or just leave this anonymous?
Thanks for your help? The book is on the topic of how parents find peace after children depart from the Church.
I was married to a Mormon church leaders son whose father served directly under the First Presidency. My x husband committed adultery and divorced me. He was rewarded with a Temple recommend to get married to his second wife . When I bring this matter up to the leaders in my Stake they simply brush it under the table telling me I am the one who needs to repent.
Our son has left the church after witnessing the years of abuse his father caused in our home and will never return.
I hear my story over and over again visiting with other single women.
I do not honor my church leaders like I did in my youth. I have no respect for them at all.
To whom it may concern,
I am writing you because I want to know if any of you have ever come across any families or individuals who have become disenfranchised with the LDS church over the issue of lax moral standards in modern times… such as all the exceptions given for abortion — (like rape and incest, and even life and HEALTH of the mother!)
A brief history: Back in 1997, my parents, the most conservative Mormons you will probably ever meet, discovered that for ‘decades’ women in the church had been secretly getting abortions, and that the ‘Bishop’s Handbook’ stated it was acceptable under certain criteria. They immediately spoke to the elders of the church, and upon realizing nothing was going to change, resigned as members. I was 7 at the time, and so have never been baptized LDS. Still, I have grown up on the fringes of Mormonism, with all the theological beliefs, and plenty of LDS connections.. yet I am the ultimate LDS social pariah, because I don’t have ‘any’ respect for the compromised church standards; which, sadly enough, is much more offensive to today’s LDS than if I was too ‘liberal’ for church. Even if I keep my opinions and standards to myself, I can always tell that devout churchgoers feel I am criticizing them, simply for living to a different/higher standard than the church requires. I keep the ‘word of wisdom’ to the best of my ability; eating no refined foods (such as cooked sugars and ‘white flour’) — no non-organics, no coffee, no pop, minimal red meat, take no illegal (or legal) drugs — and keep my heart pure of emotional entanglements through ‘hands-off courtship’. I do not pretend to be perfect, and eschew pride, yet anyone who wants to discount me, simply states ‘that I am trying to hard’; a ludicrous, nonsensical statement to say the least, yet indicative of the difficulties I face.
I view myself as fully progressive when it comes to people’s rights, and think no one should be discriminated against for who they ‘are’; whether it be pre-born babies, other races, or religions. … BUT, I DO believe in ‘loving discrimination’ against people whose sexual ‘lifestyle choices’ are damaging to traditional family constructs; I.E. homosexuality, polygamy (adultery), & fornication.
I fit under no known religious banner, for I believe in a controlled evolutionary process set up by God ‘In the beginning’, and that we are all responsible for maintaining and improving our genetic health through ‘wise living practices’.
The ‘Word of Wisdom’ states: “And I, the Lord, give unto them a promise, that the destroying angel shall pass by them, as the children of Israel, and not slay them.” I believe this is referring to the natural aging process of our frail physical bodies, and only through living to a higher standard, can we hope to provide a better genetic inheritance for our descendants. I am working on getting my science-fiction stories published, so as to expose the masses to my radical ‘non-conformist’ beliefs.
…But the point of this email is not to try and convince ‘you’ of my beliefs — merely to state them so you might get a clearer picture of who I am.
Why then do I write this? Because I seek to follow God’s first commandment to ‘man’ in Genesis. I seek a wife! …A strong woman; never a follower. An equal I can love and respect.
…Yet, how does one such as I go about seeking an ‘eternal soul-mate’ in a world so filled with narrow mindedness? How can I ever hope to find that ‘one unusual woman’ who embraces the same clean living standards as I? Especially if it means the total theological disenfranchisement from whatever community she might currently identify with? Yet I hold up to the light, the story of my parents as a guiding example. When the time was right (early 1980s), they ‘prayed unceasingly’ (for a lot of months), asking for guidance as they went about seeking their ‘eternal companion’. Eventually – through a series of truly miraculous events – they met at a ‘church dance’ in Orem, were wed in the temple within WEEKS, ‘and forevermore respect each other as equals in both living standards and spirituality’.
I seek what they have; a relationship that transcends any earthly ties to bogus man-made religious strictures… or to put it another way, I am pretty much guaranteed to be hated by my in-laws.
I present in this email, a one page document I have carefully constructed over many years of failed attempts to find ‘her’. I guarantee it to be an interesting read, and who knows, you may know of some person or family that will lead me closer in my search.
May the Lord bless you and your family,
Ammon Emanuel Prolife
Good morning. This will turn into a bit of a rant, for which I apologize. I am not subtle and have no gentle way of exorcising my own aggravation here. An old friend who left the church for several of the reasons set out in your video, forwarded your video to me to help understand her position. I already did understand that position, but appreciated the thought. I already knew that she did not think I understood her position, and had cut off contact some time ago because of her unkind, aggressive and rude behaviour toward me. Anyway, I have skimmed through the video so far (I’ve had only half an hour to go through it). It is a very good video. I like it very much and I appreciate the study you have done. I will comment, however, that in my experience, the issue I have had with disaffected members, such as this friend, has nothing to do with their reasons for leaving the church — the reasons are often understandable and justifiable, often (though not always) along the lines you cite (though the mythical ones also exist, in my experience…you just might not find those people as active and willing to discuss their reasons in those terms or on social media). My issue has been dealing with their often, as I say, aggressive, rude and irrational behaviour toward me and other faithful members. I have met very few disaffected LDS who avoid the trap of stereotyping the faithful as stupid, thoughtless and uncaring, or who do not feel utterly justified in making such assumptions and allegations. Apparently, they believe their sense of personal victimhood entitles them to be abusive. The merest expression of faith gets met with derision, and it is seems that many of them suffer from a martyr complex that makes them continually feel like the victim, even when they are under no attack whatsoever. At least, that is what they project. And, yes, I do try to be understanding of that — try to recognize, sympathize and empathize with feelings of betrayal, disappointment and loss — but there are limits. For me, a limit gets reached when it seems that all I am doing is facilitating psychological harm, rather than helping them. And, by helping, I don’t mean bringing them back to church; what I mean is the realization that our conversations about church or the gospel seem merely to encourage them to recycle through their sense of weakness and vulnerability, leaving them constantly wracked with anger toward the church and prejudice toward its faithful members, rather than being satisfied with their decisions and getting on with their lives. I am wondering whether you might consider making a further video for the disaffected Mormon along the lines of, “just because you left the Church, doesn’t mean you have to be a jerk,” or, to put things more sensitively, that assists disaffected Mormons in going through the grief process more effectively, coming to terms with their decisions, and determining to treat others with ordinary human respect rather than to use their own experiences of feeling betrayed as an excuse to seek to harm others. (You might call it the Batman Principle –> the taking of one’s own victimization and turning it into an excuse to aid others, rather than continually revictimizing oneself by rehearsing one’s angst against every person who seems emblematic of one’s abuser.) Anyway, that is my rant. Keep up the good work. (And maybe it would be worth a follow up study about why some questioning Mormons stay in the church anyway.)
I left because after a conversation with the Bishop on a repentance issue, his councilor was informed of our conversation then immediately told members in the ward who he worked with about my conversation. A few years later when this councilor became my Bishop he asked me to come to his office for some kind of bogus/minor discussion about a calling I had, as we were leaving his office, he told me I better careful because God was watching me and and next time I wouldn’t get off so easy. Several times over the years his friends would try to get me to talk about it saying he told them there was a lady in the ward who…. trying to see my reaction to their questions. I no longer trust anyone in authority over me in this church and never will again. I now consider myself a follower of Christ, not a follower of any church on this earth. My relationship with my father in heaven is better than it has ever been in my life sense I quit going to church and got away from these people. I feel the holy spirit with me every second of every day. My Question: Why is this betrayal of members never addressed? All I hear from General authorities is it is required for me to forgive but they are never required to apologize or disciplined for their betrayal. This is a huge issue in this church and one reason so many people never go through the repentance process laid out in the church. I believe by making this process harder than it has to be for members is a bigger crime the the sin and these leaders will one day have to answer for their actions before God.
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