I Hate to Say it, but it Ain’t Gonna Happen

By: Bro. Jake
January 12, 2014

I love the Bloggernacle*. It is a fascinating hodgepodge of riveting personal accounts, passionate arguments, juvenile hijinks, respect, disdain, sincerity, and irreverence. It has allowed many with beliefs outside the correlated orthodoxy of the Church*, otherwise isolated in their respective locations, to find others with similar worldviews and participate in the discussion of the LDS faith. But like any good thing, it has its vices.

As I have become more involved in the FOMC (Fringe-y Online Mormon Community—a term I just made up) over the past year, I’ve become increasingly worried about the implications of this little echo chamber we’ve created for ourselves. Now, it’s perfectly natural for this type of thing to happen when like-minded people get together and discuss things, and I don’t think there’s necessarily anything wrong with that. However, I do think it poses a problem when it influences how people perceive the impact of this subculture on the larger Church.

I remember when I first broke away from orthodox belief and discovered the Bloggernacle. It was exhilarating to know that there were many who, like me, felt deeply connected to Mormonism but were uncomfortable with certain doctrines and cultural quirks. And in those first months, it seemed that everything was happening so quickly—look at how the Church doesn’t prescribe “cures” for same-sex attraction anymore! Did you see how Elder Packer’s talk was edited? And listen to Uchtdorff! The fringe crowd is growing! Our day will come! There are dozens of us! DOZENS!!

However, this week’s First Presidency statement drove home a depressing thought that’s been growing in my mind about unorthodox believers in the U.S.:

not going to happen

We are an unbelievably small minority in the Church, and our views/beliefs will never, ever be institutionally recognized or accepted.

I hope to God that it isn’t true, but I’m almost certain that it is. Now, there are probably many that say, “But look at the priesthood ban! The Church changed on that and it’ll change again!” And they have a point—the Church did change the policy. But (other than an anonymously-sourced essay on its website), it never really acknowledged that the ban was wrong or racist. Instead, a collective “I dunno” was written into the curriculum materials and all explanations justifying its existence were brushed aside. So I believe it will be with homosexuality; if the Church changes its position at all (a prospect I find incredibly unlikely), it will never acknowledge any previous homophobia or wrongdoing of any kind.

Here’s the bottom line: this is a Church whose official policies and curriculum is dictated by a hierarchy populated by those chosen specifically for their loyalty to the institution and its status quo. Sure, there are wards that are more accepting of ideas that fall outside the mainstream, but they are few and far between. By and large, uncorrelated beliefs aren’t (and probably will never be) validated by the institution.

Now, I’m not saying that we should shut down the Bloggernacle or that anyone with uncorrelated beliefs should get out of the Church. The Bloggernacle is a wonderful place for discussion about Church doctrine or policy, and uncorrelated believers can add much-needed diversity to their congregations. However, I am advocating a realistic view of what the relationship between the Bloggernacle and the Church is. Based on how outspoken we are, it’s is easy to think we are part of a growing, sweeping movement, but I believe this is mostly a result of the ease of communication afforded by the internet. In reality, the Bloggernacle represents an extremely small sample of the Church body; and since those with unorthodox views are rarely chosen for positions within the hierarchy, we have even less influence over the institutional Church than our numbers suggest.

The implication of this is, in my opinion, that those outside the mainstream of belief have a long life of frustrating lessons, cringe-inducing Sacrament meetings, and angsty conference attendances ahead of them. For those up to the challenge of rarely being able to share their true feelings and never having their opinions institutionally validated in Sunday meetings, I salute you. To those gripping to the pews every week, hoping that someday the light at the end of the tunnel will come and your worldview will be acknowledged as legitimate in the eyes of the Church, you may want to consider nightvision.

Crap. That’s depressing. I’d love to be convinced otherwise, though.

(*Clarifying disclaimer: when I say “Church,” I mean the correlated hierarchy that dictates Church policy and curriculum, not the entire body of people that participate in the organization. Also, when I mention the views or beliefs of the “Bloggernacle,” I’m referring to the disproportionately high percentage of those with “liberal,” uncorrelated, or otherwise unorthodox beliefs that fall outside of the Mormon mainstream, relative to a typical Mormon congregation.)

35 Responses to I Hate to Say it, but it Ain’t Gonna Happen

  1. ji on January 12, 2014 at 12:44 PM

    “By and large, uncorrelated beliefs aren’t (and probably will never be) validated by the institution.”

    Two possible answers–

    1. Nor should they.

    2. But when they are, they will be the correlated beliefs, and there would be another set of uncorrelated beliefs.

    It is hard to kick against the pricks (see Acts 26:14).

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  2. babaroni on January 12, 2014 at 1:59 PM

    Sad, Bro. Jake. Probably true, at least in the short term. In the long run, though, who knows? I’m sure there were plenty of people who felt that way about their denominations teachings in support of slavery, segregation and antimiscegenation, too, but now there are very few denominations who speak out in support of these obscenities. Things *do* change, even in staid, white, middle-class, mainstream Christianity. Things will probably continue to change in Mormonism, too.

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  3. DavidH on January 12, 2014 at 3:38 PM

    Of course the Church is not going to change dramatically in response to the bloggernacle. Neither will the federal government or a state government. And probably the views of most people who read the bloggernacle will not change either. I don’t participate in the bloggernacle in the thought that we are in effect a shadow FP and 12. It is a place to talk, to share ideas and thoughts, to criticize, to rejoice, to hope, to analyze.

    As to changes in the Church, they are happening. And they will continue to happen. When I was a teenager, the thought that the Church might, in my lifetime drop the temple/priesthood restriction based on race/lineage was something I hoped for, for didn’t expect to see in the near future (it was 11 years from the time I first learned of it until it was dropped). The thought that someday that the church would disavow its clear teachings then that black Africans were descendants of Cain didn’t seem possible at any time, much less in my lifetime.

    True, the Brethren have not stated “Brigham made a mistake and so did his successors by not changing it until 1978″. On the other hand they have not stated that those decisions were right or directed by God. And in fact the Church has disavowed any explanation for the ban that it has ever offered before. Basically, while it has not said said “it was a mistake” it has said “we just can’t give a defensible reason for it, nor will we say God directed it.” In my mind, that is the functional equivalent of saying it was a mistake. For PR reasons, the leaders may not wish to draw the conclusion yet, and yet us members draw our own conclusions. It may be another generation when one of Pope Francis’ cousins becomes president of our church and s/he states unequivocably “It was a mistake and it was wrong and, on behalf of my deceased predecessors I sincerely apologize for their mistakes.”

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  4. Stephen R. Marsh on January 12, 2014 at 6:27 PM

    ” the implications of this little echo chamber we’ve created for ourselves”

    There are many, many echo chambers.

    The same level of disappointment comes to every group, including the orthodox and heterodox.

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  5. Tim on January 12, 2014 at 9:49 PM

    False. These views have been adopted by the church. It just happens to be based in Missouri instead of Utah.

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  6. anonlds on January 12, 2014 at 10:08 PM

    Just wanted to say thanks for your honesty. I think you underestimate the pressure the church is feeling. They did acknowledge that the issue will continue to evolve. They can’t change over night. If we can make it past the Oaks presidency, then we can hope for some real change. Bednar is likely to be in for a long time, but he has some time for some other pragmatists to work on him. I only know of one time a counselor was demoted back down to the quorum of the 12 and so Uchtdorf and Eyring will likely continue to have power and I put some trust in Uchtdorf asking for more time. I don’t think the essays have answered most of the topics completely honestly, but 5 years ago I would never have imagined them. What will happen in the next 5 years that I can’t imagine now. If Oaks demotes one of his counselors would make me as pessimistic as you, but I’m not there yet. The church will change or it won’t survive.

    I guess what I am trying to say is that we do have some reasons to be optimistic, even though we know things won’t happen as quickly as we would like. Do what is right and let the consequences follow. I feel more confident than ever that our little faction is doing that and in God’s time the majority of the church will come to the same conclusions we have.

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  7. forwardjoe on January 12, 2014 at 10:33 PM

    Anonlds,

    I don’t think the part about the matter continuing to evolve means what you stated here. I read that to refer to the legal and civil issue of same-sex marriage, not the church’s stance on it. Hence this part: “Changes in the civil law do not, indeed cannot, change the moral law that God has established.”

    You seem to believe that someday the church and the majority of the members will change on this issue. But what if this really is God’s standard? That marriage only be between men and women. What if gender really is an essential characteristic and the church’s stance on this is the “right one”. What then?

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  8. Newconvert on January 12, 2014 at 10:34 PM

    Wow. Did it ever cross any if your minds that God has this all playing out exactly as it should (even if you still believe stances the church has taken ate wrong)? Even your reactions are as they should be (for you and the journey you are on)?

    My husband takes major issue with any changes the church makes (he doesn’t believe Gods’s laws change). I’m not sure how I feel about it yet.. I do however, know that as a parent (like HF), I do change many of my answers for my kids when the circumstances change, however, I do not do this through a third party. It is a direct revelation to them from me, not through a 3rd party.

    Do any if you have thoughts on where this leaves me as a Mormon? I think of the prophets as possible prophets if God, but more likely great leaders that are put there by God, but not necessarily seeing burning bushes or angels speaking to them literally.

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  9. Andrew S on January 12, 2014 at 10:38 PM

    Stephen’s comment re 4 reminded me of the schadenfreude that many disaffected Mormons are experiencing because of Mike Tannehill’s reaction to the lds.org statement on race and the priesthood. To summarize, Mike is a hyper-conservative Mormon known for riling things up on the internet because of his outspoken positions. Currently, he is waging a letter-writing and phone-calling campaign about the lds.org statement on race and the priesthood because he thinks it is apostate.

    So, yeah, quite a bit of disappointment there.

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  10. Matt on January 12, 2014 at 10:43 PM

    I dunno, I think this post in part misses the point of the bloggernacle. Among other things, I look at the liberal fringe as a (subversive, unwitting, etc.) think tank for Mormonism. As current doctrinal framings become irrelevant, leaders will look around for something that DOES work, something that resonates with the current zeitgeist. They’ll be able to lift at will from what the bloggernacle has already synthesized — or really, from what more loyal voices like Bushman or Givens have synthesized — in order to keep Mormonism relevant throughout the 21st century.

    The church will never look like what the bloggernacle thinks it should be. But the most successful of bloggernacle ideas will weave their way into mainstream Mormonism.

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  11. Carl Youngblood on January 13, 2014 at 1:41 AM

    I’m with Matt. The bloggernacle is the leaven in the loaf. It wields an incredible amount of influence for its size. Responses from The LDS Newswire regularly are influenced by bloggernacle commentaries and sometimes even quote them directly. When people look for direction, they will look to those who’ve blazed the trails already.

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  12. Bro. Jake on January 13, 2014 at 6:13 AM

    Carl and Matt,

    You may be right. Maybe the bloggernacle is some sort of incubator for future Church stances. I guess I’m a little more skeptical that those with the most influence over the correlated channels of the Church are influenced by us in the slightest. Sure, mormonsandgays.org gets made and certain PR statements seem to be responding to issues playing out online, but that seems more like posturing than indicators of future changes in official stances. But I tend to be a bit cynical.

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  13. Howard on January 13, 2014 at 6:16 AM

    “August 17, 1949
    The attitude of the Church with reference to Negroes remains as it has always stood. It is not a matter of the declaration of a policy but of direct commandment from the Lord, on which is founded the doctrine of the Church from the days of its organization, to the effect that Negroes may become members of the Church but that they are not entitled to the priesthood at the present time. The prophets of the Lord have made several statements as to the operation of the principle. President Brigham Young said: “Why are so many of the inhabitants of the earth cursed with a skin of blackness? It comes in consequence of their fathers rejecting the power of the holy priesthood, and the law of God. They will go down to death. And when all the rest of the children have received their blessings in the holy priesthood, then that curse will be removed from the seed of Cain, and they will then come up and possess the priesthood, and receive all the blessings which we now are entitled to.”
    President Wilford Woodruff made the following statement: “The day will come when all that race will be redeemed and possess all the blessings which we now have.”
    The position of the Church regarding the Negro may be understood when another doctrine of the Church is kept in mind, namely, that the conduct of spirits in the premortal existence has some determining effect upon the conditions and circumstances under which these spirits take on mortality and that while the details of this principle have not been made known, the mortality is a privilege that is given to those who maintain their first estate; and that the worth of the privilege is so great that spirits are willing to come to earth and take on bodies no matter what the handicap may be as to the kind of bodies they are to secure; and that among the handicaps, failure of the right to enjoy in mortality the blessings of the priesthood is a handicap which spirits are willing to assume in order that they might come to earth. Under this principle there is no injustice whatsoever involved in this deprivation as to the holding of the priesthood by the Negroes.
    The First Presidency”

    1978 Bruce R. McConkie
    Forget everything I have said, or what…Brigham Young…or whomsoever has said…that is contrary to the present revelation. We spoke with a limited understanding and without the light and knowledge that now has come into the world.

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  14. Howard on January 13, 2014 at 6:33 AM

    Gay marriage has finally arrived on the Wasatch Front. Given their Prop. 8 position what did you expect to hear? Why should anyone believe their eternal hyperbole given the ban on blacks fresco? I agree with arnolds getting through the Oaks presidency will be a significant challenge!

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  15. Howard on January 13, 2014 at 6:48 AM

    fiasco

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  16. anonlds on January 13, 2014 at 7:05 AM

    You seem to believe that someday the church and the majority of the members will change on this issue

    –I do, but I think the OP is about much more than just this issue.

    But what if this really is God’s standard? That marriage only be between men and women.

    –If the church believe’s a marriage is only between one man and one woman then they need to change their temple policies which currently reflect the belief that marriage is between one man and at least one woman and give an explanation of why God has changed his mind. As best I can tell it is still doctrine that plural marriage is required to make it to the highest degree of the celestial kingdom. If anyone has an authoritative statement to the contrary, I’d like to hear it. Even if it is God’s standard, that doesn’t give us the right to restrict other’s religious freedom.

    What if gender really is an essential characteristic and the church’s stance on this is the “right one”. What then?

    –Well, the church’s stance hasn’t been consistent over time, so which church’s stances are we talking about? The one yesterday, today, or tomorrow? Brigham Young argued that the government had no authority to regulate marriage. Maybe Brigham Young was right. We had decades where the church’s motto was mind your own business. What does God care who has a paper from the govt..saying someone’s married. Why is that a requirement to be sealed? It certainly hasn’t always been a requirement.

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  17. Leland on January 13, 2014 at 7:07 AM

    The Church is making a last ditch effort by doubling down but the Church has always caved to pressure. In my opinion that pressure has typically come from outside of the Church but today things have changed. While FAIR continues to fail and while Bushman and Givens open more members’ eyes to issues, the bloggernacle grows, the readership of the bloggernacle grows, and the hemorrhage of members continues. Even the faithful have a greater surety of the Church changing than they do of Christ’s Second Advent.

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  18. Nate on January 13, 2014 at 7:43 AM

    I like Brother Jake’s post and I agree with it, but not the forlorn attitude. Religion is something very different from social progression. Religion is supposed to be about communication with the divine. Progressive enlightement is not nescessary. It can be an Old Testament God. The important thing is to recognize and submit to its authority. Then we are not worshiping the God of our own superior intelligence, but taking a leap of faith to embrace the seeming foolishness of God and rejecting the wisdom of men. That is the secret of divine communication and submission.

    I think I miss out on a lot of spiritual experiences, because I am too judgemental and impatient with the prophets. I like the bloggernacle, because doubt is nescessary to define faith. But ultimately, those doubts must be acted against if faith is to be experienced.

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  19. prophetize on January 13, 2014 at 8:02 AM

    “Even the faithful have a greater surety of the Church changing than they do of Christ’s Second Advent.”

    Amazing comment, that. And by amazing, I mean ridiculous.

    “While FAIR continues to fail”

    I’m not aware of FAIR failing. But I don’t look to FAIR to buttress my faith or my testimony. I get my testimony from God.

    “The bloggernacle is the leaven in the loaf. It wields an incredible amount of influence for its size.”

    This is your echo chamber speaking. The vast majority of active LDS don’t care about the Bloggernacle. Bro. Jake is pretty much spot on with his essay here.

    On the note of folks leaving the church: yes, many are leaving, primarily in the US and the industrialized world. But why are we surprised? Ezra Taft Benson predicted this back in the 1980s. The church *is* being sifted. Only the truly faithful will remain. That’s something to be grateful for.

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  20. Howard on January 13, 2014 at 8:38 AM

    The vast majority of active LDS don’t care about the Bloggernacle.. Indeed! The church knows this well and makes use of it! At the same time there is ample evidence that the church is responding in time and in kind to bloggernacle criticisms and suggestions.

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  21. Jeff Spector on January 13, 2014 at 8:55 AM

    I am finding that Jake’s post is simply a mirror of the self-importance of the Bloggernacle itself. As stated, it is a blip, a pimple as it only mean much to a small majority of church members and ex/non-church members. It is to the Church what a hallway folks are to the Ward. The ones that aren’t too interested in class.

    This is not a religious experience, it is a social one mingled with religion. True religion is in the mind and the heart, not on the Internet.

    As has been stated about a million times, people are entitled to believe whatever they want. And they do. Fully faithful members believe wrong things all the times. I’ve heard them repeated in Sunday School countless times, sometimes corrected, sometimes not.

    I’ve spoken with number of folks who have less than orthodox beliefs and enjoyed every minute of it, using their ideas to explore my own. And sometimes adopting some or all of what they taught me.

    Do I actually worry about expressing an idea in class. Nope, not at all. Some may agree, some may not. So what? What is everyone so worried about? You may get corrected, scorned, shunned? If the latter, there is usually more to the story than you are telling.

    I hear people spouting off stuff all the time. I tend to pay it no mind unless I find it personally interesting.

    On matter what is taught over the pulpits of the church, we have to make our own way.

    I sometimes cringe but then I just move on.

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  22. Howard on January 13, 2014 at 9:01 AM

    God’s spirit is poured out to all of humankind. This IS secular enlightenment. If you have access to the spirit you may know if this enlightenment is of God or of man. If you have an institution worth of contrary “eternal” doctrine to defend you may well mis or misunderstand this message for decades as was the case with the ban on blacks and may well be the case with the ban on gays and women. And Moses said unto him, Enviest thou for my sake? would God that all the Lord’s people were aprophets, and that the Lord would put his spirit upon them!

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  23. Howard on January 13, 2014 at 9:06 AM

    If you want to learn about the past listen to LDS prophets if you want to know the road ahead listen to the Spirit.

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  24. Andrew S on January 13, 2014 at 9:23 AM

    There is something that Adam Miller has said about theology in general that I feel is relevant here (especially in response to Matt’s comment 10):

    “Mormon theology should be neither descriptive nor prescriptive but speculative.

    It is not the theologian’s job to tell Mormons what they have believed (though the theologian must be an avid collector of historical curios). It is not the theologian’s job to tell Mormons what they do believe (though the theologian must be saturated with such anthropological and sociological data). And it is not the theologian’s job to tell Mormons what they should believe (though the theologian must be faithful to God’s call).

    Rather, it is the theologian’s job, qua theologian, to mock-up alternatives, to slide into adjacent spaces and speculate – given what Mormons have, do, and should believe – about what they could believe.”

    “If a theologian’s could ever becomes a should or a does, it will because something other than theology has set to work. In such a case, a theologian’s work may, in fact, prove useful to those called to effect such change.”

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  25. Jeff G on January 13, 2014 at 10:43 AM

    So many people in the ‘nacle are so concerned about the the church taught members in the past or will teach members in the future that they almost entirely sideline what the church teaches members now (aka, us). Continuing revelation all but guarantees that past, present and future teachings will never be the same, so the best we can do is focus on what we are told in the here and now.

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  26. Howard on January 13, 2014 at 11:21 AM

    Jeff G wrote:So many people in the ‘nacle are so concerned about the the church taught members in the past or will teach members in the future… Well as I recall you are a convert, had you grown up in the church you might be bothered by seeing changes to the “eternal gospel truths” you were taught with such unwavering certitude. It doesn’t inspire confidence that the church knows what it is saying, instead it argues the opposite.

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  27. Jeff Spector on January 13, 2014 at 1:34 PM

    “you might be bothered by seeing changes to the “eternal gospel truths” you were taught with such unwavering certitude.”

    Imagine how the Jews must feel….

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  28. brjones on January 13, 2014 at 9:26 PM

    Prophetize, was ETB’s prediction that members would leave the church made in the same talk in which he prophesied that the civil rights movement was a front for the attempted overthrow of the American government by communists?

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  29. brjones on January 13, 2014 at 9:32 PM

    Jeff G., your comment begs an important question. If the church reserves the right, as it unquestionably does, to disavow literally any past act, position, doctrine or prophecy with which it currently disagrees, then what in the world is the value of listening to anything the brethren say in the here and now? I’m guessing your response will be that current prophets know what is best for current members, and it doesn’t matter if it wasn’t relevant to past members or ceases to be relevant to future members, it’s still good advice now. I could accept that if prophets hadn’t, in essence, gone all in by draping their beliefs and directives with the trappings of prophecy and true revelation. When those turn out to be bunk, it’s asking a lot to expect members to turn around and again grant their unwavering trust. I’m guessing this is exactly why no one of any real authority in the contemporary church claims anything close to revelation anymore.

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  30. […] keeping with the spirit of Jake’s post this Sunday, I wanted to add another perspective and expound on what may be happening behind the […]

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  31. Kullervo on January 15, 2014 at 7:33 PM

    Andrew S, where did that quote from Adam Miller come from? Because it’s just complete and total nonsense.

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  32. Andrew S on January 15, 2014 at 7:37 PM

    Kullervo, this passage is from his T&S blogpost “Mad Scientist”, but if I ever get around to reading his Rube Goldberg Machines, I would imagine that his book probably expounds on that idea (among others)

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  33. rah on January 16, 2014 at 2:52 AM

    #18 Nate

    An “act of faith” may not always be submission to ecclesiastical authority, but can also come as a leap to go against authority and status quo. It is Christ standing up to the Pharisees, Lehi walking out of Jerusulem, Alma leaving King Noah’s priests. This is one of the big questions before each of us and one that largely animates the Bloggernacle as a whole. When do we choose as individuals to act in faith through submission and when do we choose act in faith through resistance – both in what we choose to believe and in what we choose to do.

    I generally share Brother Jake’s pessimistic view about the low likelihood of change in the institutional church as well as his identified mechanisms for it. I don’t think we get any real change unless we have emeritus 12 and the selection process for leaders changes. The alternative is some major, major burning platform crisis. However, given the vast financial resources of the church even significant dips they are buffered from significant dips in tithing revenue and if the leadership is willing to accept a shrinking church membership without considering it a real crisis then there is little incentive for major change. I think this last one is an intriguing potential question. We have such strong rhetoric in the church about the “hand cut out of the mountain” and a identity as one of the “fastest growing” churches that maybe when it becomes clear this isn’t true there might be some openness to serious soul searching at the COB. I think you are seeing shades of it with the missionary program right now. It really is a crisis at the moment that we don’t have anything to do with all the missionaries in the field that is productive. However, let me predict that when we can no longer deny that our numbers are shrinking (if that trend really takes off, something like the opening of China could provide a reprieve) that we could see a return to the rhetoric of the small and beleaguered “elect”. You know the lines: “The true church has always been and always will be just a small group of true believers”, “We will be persecuted for his sake” etc. etc. I think you see this most heavily in the growing us vs the world rhetoric.

    That all said. Human history tends to be non-linear and full of surprises. We are very bad at predicting. Maybe some hidden Pope Francis works his way up the hierarchy. Maybe something really strange happens and a miraculous, earth shaking vision comes to the next leader. Maybe a financial or other scandal that non of us can forsee rocks the COB. Maybe the singularity happens much faster than expected. Who knows.

    However, for me the Bloggernacle is (sadly maybe) about expressing my faith through creating an alternative Mormon narrative and space that feels to me to be more inline with God and more emotionally and spiritually productive for me. I think I express faith by both submitting in my activity to the church while also resisting what I believe is immoral. It is a a weird and quirky way to live a religious life, granted. But it is my religious life.

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  34. Douglas on January 17, 2014 at 4:54 PM

    Welcome to the LDS part of the Bloggernacle, where you can be all you can be…including a legend in your own mind.

    Let’s face it…to a great extent, the three-hour block, most auxillary meetings (YW for my daughter, RS for my g/f and my estranged wife, etc.) are to a great extent “scripted”. And they largely have to be in order to accomplish anything of value. The bloggernacle is visited most, whom, like myself, have frustrated intellects, and there’s little room to ramble on otherwise. But here, whether you fancy yourself a diehard faithful, or you’re somewhat lukewarm, or you’re “aggrieved”, or even a former member who could “leave it but can’t leave it alone”, there’s a place for you. And to a large extent, it’s catharsis, a healthy way to blow off steam. If we’re wise, though, we won’t confuse it with missionary work. As much as I uphold “The Gospel according to Doug”, I don’t pretend for a moment that my postings should be construed as either Church doctrine or are profitable as a part of missionary work. They’re just what springeth forth from that gnarled cavern that occupys the space between my ears…what Merlin counseled King Arthur in Excalibur (1981) as “a more TANGLED forest (points at his skull…)…up here”. It’s not necessarily a money-maker, but like my Star Wars fan fiction (and yes, Padme lives and Luke unknowlingly does Leia), it’s a far healthier outlet for my creative energies than most TV fare, Internet porn, and drink. I’m down to just one hot-rod (my ’95 Mustang) so I’m not spending too much time in the garage anymore.
    And believe it or not, I’m actually glad for well-articulated opposing views. I don’t suffer fools, even those whose views I otherwise agree with. It’s sort of like some years ago when my high school senior son wrote an interesting paper on the Holocaust…suffice it to say he questioned the traditional view (gee, I wonder where he got THAT from?). It prompted a call from his World History teacher (no, the man isn’t Jewish). I replied to the teacher that my son would soon be a man (he was but weeks from his 18th birthday), and he had to think for himself. I told him not to judge the boy on his assertions but on how he presents them. The kid got a “A”. He’s now starting a new career for a major chemical and glass manufacturer as a Chemical Engineer, out in the land of meat and potatoes (downstate Illinois).
    Likewise, I make no bones about my views and give not a fat rat’s hiney whether they are popular or not. The only opinions I care about are my loved ones, especially the Lord Jesus Christ, and the Priesthood leadership as He has duly designated. The only accountability that I agree to is to submit said views in a respectful manner, adhering to commonly accepted intellectual standards, and that it be likewise enforced on all that wander into this domain. And to those that give of their time to keep the bloggernacle going, thanks, it’s not said often enough.

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  35. […] doubts that the Bloggernacle et al can make an impact on the CoJCoL-dS from within. And — speaking […]

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