Mormon Church’s “Bees” Are Swarming…

OrdainWomenPriesthoodLast week the threat of excommunication for Kate Kelly became a reality. Ms. Kelly is the founder of Ordain Women, a Mormon group advocating for gender equality in the Mormon priesthood. She was found guilty of apostasy. Her bishop explained:

“. . . our determination is that you be excommunicated for conduct contrary to the laws and order of the Church. This means that you may not wear temple garments or contribute tithes and offerings. You may not take the sacrament, hold a Church calling, give a talk in Church, offer a public prayer in behalf of the class or congregation in a Church meeting, or vote in the sustaining of Church officers. These conditions almost always last at least one year. If you show true repentance and satisfy the conditions imposed below while you are no longer a member, you may be readmitted by baptism and confirmation.

“In order to be considered for readmission to the Church, you will need to demonstrate over a period of time that you have stopped teachings and actions that undermine the Church, its leaders, and the doctrine of the priesthood. You must be truthful in your communications with others regarding matters that involve your priesthood leaders, including the administration of Church discipline, and you must stop trying to gain a following for yourself or your cause and taking actions that could lead others away from the Church.”

Ms. Kelly plans to appeal her excommunication within the next thirty days, according to the Church’s procedural policy.

Mormon bloggers John Dehlin (Mormon Stories Podcast) and Alan Rock Waterman (Pure Mormonism) are among additional Latter-day Saints that are currently facing Church discipline for apostasy. As I noted in “Mormon Church Kicks the Beehive” (June 16, 2014), many Latter-day Saints were upset and frustrated by what they saw as an effort by the Church to silence its critics. While the Church hoped the media interest and frustration of members would “de-escalate,” so far that hope has been nothing more than wishful thinking.

In an unprecedented move, an assembly of Latter-day Saints has begun organizing under the banner “Strangers in Zion”:

“Strangers In Zion is a grass roots movement for members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who are requesting to subject themselves to church discipline in solidarity for other wrongfully excommunicated and otherwise disciplined Latter-day Saints.” (“About“)

AngryBeeStrangers in Zion is calling for like-minded Mormons to contact their Church leaders with requests for disciplinary hearings based on each individual’s “beliefs that are contrary to the teachings, doctrines, and leaders of the Church.” In a letter template available on the website, participants are encouraged to list specific contrary beliefs they hold (e.g., “I find Joseph Smith’s fundamental character flaws, pathological dishonesty, and moral relativism not in harmony with an individual who should be speaking for God.”) as well as ways in which they have publicly promoted (and intend to continue promoting) those beliefs (e.g., “I have published numerous blog posts with wide circulation amongst the online Mormon community publicly opposing the Church’s stance on…”). The letter template concludes:

“All this being considered, I humbly request assistance from the Church in the form of a Church court to determine the best course of action for myself and my membership in the Church. If you have any questions I would be happy to address them at my disciplinary court.”

Strangers in Zion plans to post a list of participants along with information related to the participants’ individual experiences as the movement progresses.

As far as I’m aware, the modern LDS Church has never seen this sort of widespread uprising of members (though the early Mormon Church experienced rife dissention in Kirtland, Ohio and Nauvoo, Illinois). Certainly the majority of Latter-day Saints supports the Church in this situation and opposes those members accused of apostasy. Yet according to one of the accused, Mormon blogger Rock Waterman,

“There’s going to be a lot of fallout resulting from this needless debacle. And absolutely none of it is going to benefit the church.

“Already countless members on the fence have declared this nonsense to be the last straw for them, and they’re throwing in the towel. I’ve come to know a number of these people; two former bishops, several bishopric members, Relief Society presidents, counselors, ward clerks, stake High Council members, one former stake president, a stake patriarch, you name it — all of them believers in the gospel of the Restoration, and all of them have had their fill of the shenanigans the structural Church has been up to in recent years. This final malfeasance has done them in. They embrace the gospel, but they tell me this is it; they’re done supporting the corporate Church.

“And those are the devout believers. A whole lot more members who are not so devoted, but whose testimonies of the gospel have been shaken by the Magisterium’s transparent hypocrisy, have weighed in online declaring their intentions to resign. These people number in the tens of thousands.” (“Who Is Changing the Doctrine?”)

If this actually comes to pass, what will these “devout believers” do? Will they join the swelling ranks of atheistic ex-Mormons? Will they form a new Mormon denomination/splinter group just as hundreds of Mormon dissenters have done before them? What they do will affect them into eternity.

China DroughtAt the MRM website we address those struggling with their Mormon faith:

…we often hear from members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who are struggling in the aftermath of betrayal. Realization that their church has not been wholly truthful about Mormon Church history and the doctrinal teachings of Mormon leaders, many Latter-day Saints respond with hurt and anger and a myriad of questions. “Why did the church deceive me?” “Why couldn’t my bishop be honest with me?” “How could I have been so easily fooled?”

Anger is a natural reaction in this situation. Unfortunately, many become so disgusted that they throw the baby out with the bathwater. Feeling vulnerable, they may think, “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” The idea of finding another church and religion is daunting – and scary. If Mormonism is false, they reason, why trust religion at all?…

Traditional Christian teachings are often never even considered or given a chance; for if the “only true church” isn’t true, that leaves no spiritual truth at all. Giving traditional Christianity a fair hearing, then, is prevented by pain and fear.

Hopefully, the confusion you are experiencing will not cause you to drift unnecessarily into agnosticism or atheism. To throw all faith away because Mormonism proved to be false is like abandoning all health care because you were once the victim of medical malpractice…

Struggling with faith issues can be a very emotional experience. While it may be easier and less threatening for you to dismiss the truth claims of the Christian faith outright, our prayer is that you would take the time to understand what traditional Christianity really is, and what it has to offer.

To that end, if you are a struggling Mormon please visit MRM’s Struggling with your Mormonism page to find resources that will help you make intentional and wise decisions about your eternal future – there’s a lot riding on it.

About Sharon Lindbloom

Sharon surrendered her life to the Lord Jesus Christ in 1979. Deeply passionate about Truth, Sharon loves serving as a full-time volunteer research associate with Mormonism Research Ministry. Sharon and her husband live in Minnesota.
This entry was posted in LDS Church, Mormon Culture and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

26 Responses to Mormon Church’s “Bees” Are Swarming…

  1. falcon says:

    I must repeat what “Bishop Earl” and one of the guests he was interviewing on his webcast “Mormon Ex-Files” said; “I know more about Mormonism since I left it than I ever did when I was a member of the LDS church.”
    That statement had a profound effect on my thinking since Rick and I in particular, are always accused by LDS posters to this blog about not knowing anything about Mormonism. That’s because these Mormon posters know the created narrative about the religion they belong to and not the reality of its history and founding prophet.
    At its core, Mormonism is dishonest. It was founded on a falsehood, perpetuated on numerous falsehoods and today must hide it all in a web of created story telling.
    That’s why when Mormons have to face the bizarre teachings of Brigham Young and some of the practices of the church, it’s all assigned to individual opinion or folk doctrine.
    This case we have been discussing is gnawing around the edges of the LDS church. Pretty soon what happens with those who don’t like the heavy handedness of the church hierarchy but still believe in Mormonism, it all starts crashing down on them. They begin to learn more and their love and dedication for Mormonism and the church becomes a cloud of dust in the collapse of their faith.

    Hopefully these folks won’t walk away from God but turn to His Word to find the true revelation of Him and His plan of salvation.

  2. Ironman1995 says:

    When i was growing up in the mid 60 ‘s both my parents smoked , it was there house, and it really helped me move towards being on my own. And i have never smoked.
    So i really stay clear now of smokers and don’t have nor will i ever have a close friendship with a smoker.

    When i joined the church in 1975 at age 17 it didn’t come with a warning label and i didn’t have a reason to ask.
    When i went on a mission at age 19 , again no warning label , in fact i was warned alot of almost everything in the world i would see, hear that would come at me and over time and decades one believes the world is against this so called true church .

    I defended it , not knowing others had many decades of knowing fully the warning that comes from being in that church .
    It took till Sep 11, 2011 my last day of being a Mormon where i would not let second hand or first hand Mormonism infect me , i would have to let go of friends who would take in that second hand Mormonism.

    I can come here and breathe .
    I keep my distance .

  3. falcon says:

    A couple of things struck me as I read your post. One would be the appearance of righteousness and holiness and sort of attitude of LDS members of being better than the rest. It’s all pretty typical of legalistic and top down hierarchical organizations.
    The other thing is the continuum of Mormon belief and experience. It makes me wonder where the LDS church will end up. Brigham Young style Mormonism is practiced by the FLDS. Now all along the line there are a lot of different types of Mormonism. Kate Kelly would probably be more at home within the Community of Christ. The problem is she says she’s got a real deal testimony. Well the CoC aren’t all that into the BoM and the LDS type of Mormonism. No Celestial Kingdom with men becoming gods and women goddesses etc.
    So what are these Kate type Mormons to do? They can keep their mouths shut I suppose and believe what ever they want. But for those demanding institutional change, forget about it. It won’t happen. Off-shoots tend to not get very big anyway. And how in the world would they attract new members? New members would have to come from the ranks of the current LDS fold. We know the LDS system claims to be the holders of the real priesthood authority and the means by which to become a god.

  4. MistakenTestimony says:

    The LDS church is doing the right thing here and I wish Christian denominations would follow suit. If people are just going to any religious service while flat out rejecting core beliefs of that religion then that is obviously a problem. There needs to be a checklist of doctrinal positions for every religion, I am completely in favor of this across the board for everyone. Willful and unrepentant heterodoxy and heresy among members of any religion (I stress again “willful” and “unrepentant”) should not be tolerated. Now how other religions handle excommunicants is their business, but we Christians know how we are to treat those who have removed themselves from the church, and the Christian church did not kick them out but they willfully removed themselves from the catholic faith.

    Now on the other hand it is fun to watch the LDS church squirm from all this, this is true. From here they can either go the Community of Christ route or they can dig in. Obviously this means that they are digging in all the more for the long haul. It will be interesting to see how all this plays out.

  5. falcon says:

    I guess you may have a valid point there but I’m wondering why people stay in a group that they fundamentally disagree with?
    Actually the LDS church doesn’t mind all that much if people don’t believe in the fundamental doctrines of the church as long as they keep their mouths shut. The LDS folks are not totally monolithic in terms of what they believe. There are, for example, social Mormons. For familial, cultural or financial reasons, they stick around the sect.

    “At the 2007 Community of Christ World Conference, President Stephen M. Veazey ruled out of order a resolution to “reaffirm the Book of Mormon as a divinely inspired record.” He stated that “while the Church affirms the Book of Mormon as scripture, and makes it available for study and use in various languages, we do not attempt to mandate the degree of belief or use. This position is in keeping with our longstanding tradition that belief in the Book of Mormon is not to be used as a test of fellowship or membership in the church.”[99]

  6. falcon says:

    I found this interesting regarding the “evolution” of the Community of Christ. It was on a site asking a question as to why the LDS church was “mainstreaming”.

    There is a fascinating case study of this: The Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, Now called “Commuinty of Christ”.

    1) They began to struggle financially
    2) Then membership began to split between the old school people and the new school- feminist, intellectuals, people who wanted to distant from JS.
    3) During their GC, after some serious cloak and dagger moves, women got the priesthood
    4) The next Sunday, many members and bishops were locked out of the chapels until they clarified their alligeance.
    5) Many spliter groups began- similar to the new age mormon, semi mormon, half ass mormon stuff that is going on now with the LDS. These groups faded is size but solidified in resolve. Most turned into small cultish congregations.
    6) They (this is not chronological) joined some protesant alliances of christian churches. In order to join they were to renounce the BOM and DnC as scripture, they were to say they were somy type of helpful inspired book (this is LDS’ next stop in 10-20 years)
    7)They renamed themselves, denied polygamy completely (they always tried to), they changed their temples to be just a weird visitor temple and overall the got away from the latter day movement.

    All of this was a corporate reorganization in order to survive and keep the maximum amont of donors.

    I think that LDS is going down a similar path. They have already gotten a pretty bad case of amnesia when it comes to doctrines that are seen as controversial. The temple rite has been cleaned up and has become more about Jesus and the bible. Thery have gotten away from the JS translation of the bibile and the POGP has been removed as a source from most lessons. They are already making statements that the BOM is a “spritual book” and that you cannot hold it to secualr scrutiny. Its all in an effort to keep the next generation from throwing down their baker’s hat and walking away.

    You might think this cannot happen, but think of the church 20-30 years ago: polygamy was taught, blacks were cursed, feminism were evil, gay anything was the worse evil, bigger and less temples was the norm, less but better missionaries was the lord’s new plan.. they change so subtly that it is hard for most to notice but they make huge turns all the time.,1018385,1018707

  7. MistakenTestimony says:

    This is from the official Community of Christ website,

    Individuals may explore and decide their degree of alignment with the official beliefs and statements of the church without putting their membership in question. However, when addressing important theological and ethical questions the church’s public theology contained in its authorized documents has priority over personal theologies. Also, priesthood members are expected to uphold the church’s official beliefs when engaged in public ministry.

    I believe that what we are seeing here with the Brighamites is the opposite of this. Anyone who knows the history of the LDS church knows that their teachings, practices, and scriptures have evolved over time. I think what we are seeing as of recent is an end to the evolution and a digging in to their current position. They have been shedding all the bat-crap craziness to make themselves more palatable to new converts and to mainstream themselves with the Christians that surround them. We used to be able to say that the LDS church used to not care really what you believed so long as you gave money to the corporation pretending to be a religion, but after seeing their recent actions I don’t think we can any longer say that they are changing over time or that they care about adherence to their so-called fundamental doctrines.

    And let me just be clear that the CofC position is hogwash and nothing but universalism masking as a religion. I would rather deal with a religion that actually believes what they believe rather than trying to nail jello to the wall, regardless how false the system is. But the pressure may be too much for the Brighamites to take this position so it will be interesting to see how this all plays out.

  8. falcon says:

    What’s CofC suppose to do? I think they figured it out. It’s a total ruse. They know they have a history with Joseph Smith and they acknowledge it. Universalism morph? Probably. They want to keep their religion going but what do you do when you have to conclude that the whole foundation is a lie? They can back way up to the pre-Nauvoo days and maybe further back right up to the Book of Commandments. So they have a bunch of break away groups trying to hold on to something; what they have to define.
    I guess if I were a Mormon I’d draw on the precedent of polygamy when demanding change. Was there anything other than the BoM that set these folks aside? They’ve gotten rid of polygamy, blood atonement, Adam-God, blacks and the priesthood and they’ve made numerous changes in the BoM and also changed those “ancient” temple rituals.
    Here’s a recent video presentation by Sandra Tanner:

  9. Mike R says:

    Being excommunicated from a autocratic type church/religion like Mormonism can be a
    time when the person can be able to think more clearly about some things , and while there are
    to many who become disillusioned with ” religion” and sadly chuck the baby out with the bath
    water , still , there are others who realize that just maybe they were the victims of a man made
    proselytizing tactics . These people can see how Jesus’ warning about men in the latter days
    claiming to be sent by Him would persuade sincere people to embrace a counterfeit gospel .
    The Mormon people are such people . Hopefully Ms Kelly will take time to step back and
    ponder why she should trust the hierarchy of her church with the allegiance Mormons give
    them . These men are not who they have claimed to be , and the Mormon people simply don’t
    need them to gain acceptance with God and receive eternal life from Him . It’s that simple.
    But the emotional pain and confusion many Mormons experience after having discovered
    the real truth about ” Mormonism ” is not a simple thing to overcome . It will take time .
    Those Mormons who turn to Jesus alone in simple faith ( trust) will find in Him what they
    were longing for before being detoured by the prophets of Mormonism to enter the “religious
    system ” they call His church which they created .

    Mormons : don’t equate the Mormon church system with a relationship with God through
    Jesus Christ . Leaving Mormonism is not leaving God . The leaders of Mormonism have used
    fear tactics to keep sincere people in a religious organization and giving their money and
    submission to men who don’t deserve it .
    Make some quality time to read the New Testament and see about this . By going back to the
    start you’ll see how the prophets of Mormonism have amalgamated to what Jesus established
    through His apostles and also what they preached about how to receive eternal life .
    You can do this . We’re praying for you to make that time .

  10. RikkiJ says:

    The barometer of historical truth is not how nice an LDS Missionary or ward member is. The barometer of truth is to study history and not walk into something in blind faith. Nice people do not necessarily equal truth. A nice person can actually perpetuate falsehood, not knowing that they are doing so. Yet they may do so without fully knowing what they’re doing. LDS in this instance are sometimes unaware of the falsehoods they perpetuate to their unfortunate eternal demise.

  11. Mike R says:

    Rikkij, you said , ” Nice people do not necessarily equal truth . ” That is spot on .

    Rank and file Mormons are a people who don’t seem to understand that simple fact . It’s as if
    they suspend objective thinking in this area after being baptized into the Mormon church .
    It’s like the old saying of the good guys wear the white hats ( and the bad guys black ones ) .
    If someone acts nice , polite , moral , they must be the good guys — they wear a white hat.
    But the other guys , the ones who are mean , immoral — they are identified by black hats .

    Since Mormon see their leaders well dressed , polite , who talk about ” the gospel ” and the
    importance of living a moral lifestyle — why it’s obvious they must be true prophets , after
    all, it’s the Brian David Mitchell’s who are false prophets !

    It’s a blessing to see more and more Mormons coming to realize that prophets are teachers , and
    prophets who persist in teaching aberrant doctrine on fundamental issues are false prophets .
    These prophets may be nice well dressed individuals but they ” teach for doctrine the
    commandments of men ” ; they introduce man made ideas and claim those to be part of the
    ” restored ” gospel of Jesus Christ . Their followers simply accept these doctrines as sound
    because of the claimed authority of those who introduced them . To think that these prophets
    could be wrong as they are right in what they teach is to play into the Devil’s hand and be on the
    path to apostasy ! Such is the world people find themselves in once they join the religious
    organization run by Mormon leaders .

    Ms Kelly , is in a good position to ask herself , in light of the teaching track record of the men
    she believes are the only ones who have been appointed by Jesus to lead His church and preach
    the gospel of salvation today , why should she place her trust in these men to be reliable guides
    in fundamental spiritual truths — think blacks and ” priesthood ” ? Mormons have been lulled
    into a false sense of security by reasoning that because their leaders look and act nice therefore
    they must be worthy to submit to as spiritual authorities over them .
    Mormons please WAKE UP . Jesus has been trying to get your attention .
    Mormonism is not the answer .

  12. MistakenTestimony says:

    Exactly Mike. I remember a dozen years ago when I was speaking with some missionaries going through their lessons and they told me that even if Mormonism was a false religion they would still get to heaven because of how well they lived their lives on earth. This of course makes sense to the average member of the pluralist postmodern culture that we are drowning in, and it even made sense to me at the time. But, this is absolutely the complete opposite of Christianity because Christians (and Mormons are not Christians) will only get to heaven by how our Lord lived His life. In fact, the very reason why we are condemned to damnation is because of how we have lived our lives—even at our absolute very best. Perfection is demanded by the Triune God and yet no one is able to live it out, except the Righteous One who becomes our only source of righteousness before His Father. Who is worthy to open the scrolls?

  13. falcon says:

    Remember, in the LDS universalist mindset, everyone achieves some sort of level of heaven. Of course those at the lower levels will be all depressed because they didn’t make it to a higher level. Also, in the LDS program, there is the “basic” plan and then there is the level that is “earned”. The “earned” level is based on life style choices and adherence to the rules of the game as set by the LDS religious system.
    Mormons who buy into the system are under pressure to perform for the “one true church”. These poor folks are not going to leave until they can get rid of the emotional hook.

  14. MistakenTestimony says:

    Agreed, falcon. But they were speaking outside of that theological construct. If we went around and polled people who were unchurched but still believed in some sort of spirituality I bet close to 100% of them would say that they were going to heaven because they are a good person. What is telling is that when Mormons remove their theological construct they then by default substitute it with this universalist postmodern vacuous spirituality rather than the Christian understanding of what constitutes a “good person.” Even when playing devil’s advocate they still don’t come close to Christianity, that’s how far removed they are from salvation. Scary.

  15. falcon says:

    I was just watching a recent video interview John Dehlin did with Sandra Tanner. It’s in four parts so it’s quite long but extremely informative.
    Sandra talks about how a five year into the program Mormon called her very angry and wanted the name of a lawyer so he and his wife could sue the LDS church. The reason was that they had no idea that the LDS church still practiced polygamy. They had been assured by the MM that it was all in the past and was practiced way back there because women out numbered men. Well it came to light that a man could be sealed to multiple women after the death of a spouse; albeit one at a time. So in the CK he’d have as many wives as he had gotten sealed to.
    This man said he’d have never joined the LDS church had he known about this. Sandra’s point was that the LDS church lies by omission and keeps as much of this trash away from the prospects.

    So in the case of the recently ex’ed LDS woman, the publicity can’t be good for the Mormon church in its recruitment quest. That’s because more questions are going to arise as a result of this action.

  16. MistakenTestimony says:

    This woman is rightfully being excommunicated even according to Christian standards. Image if this were happening with the SBC: a woman is insisting that women can be pastors, and is even gathering a big following of like-minded women who are demanding that they too be able to be pastors. What should the SBC do in that situation? Something, that is for sure. Church discipline definitely needs to come into play in that situation. So we should not talk about this in a double-standard as if when the SBC handles this problem they are being persecuted by the world, but when the LDS handle this situation then they are receiving rightly-deserved bad publicity. If the SBC is being persecuted and the LDS are doing the same thing then they are being persecuted as well.

    Now of course this is not a perfect parallel because what these LDS women are demanding is the ability to hold the priesthood which entails not necessarily only being bishops. For us Christians the priesthood of all believers is already freely given to all people regardless of ethnicity or sex. Not a perfect parallel but still a comparable example. If anyone suggests that the SBC should do nothing in that situation then what that tells me is that they are more concerned with having a packed church than they are with correct doctrine and practice. I’m just saying that we need to not be perceived as having a double-standard here, I’m not saying that anyone here is, I’m just saying that we need to be aware of how we present this information to Christians and LDS.

  17. falcon says:

    True, the LDS bunch can ex’ed out anyone they want for whatever reason, but I think for me it’s the bad pub for the group that’s going to be the downside for them. That would also be true for just about any group but the general public would, as a result, receive more information about the other aspects of Mormonism.
    You know, polygamy and blacks in the priesthood would come marching past in the headlines and sound bites again. People don’t have a clue what the priesthood in the LDS church is all about any way. But as a result of this, people will start talking again and there you go. All the attempts by the LDS leadership to make the group look like a mainstream Christian denomination goes down the tubes.
    Worse yet, the rank and file who know virtually nothing about the history of their church might also get a little curious. Before you know it they discover what the BoA is really about and on they go to “In Sacred Loneliness”, “Rough Stone Rolling” and “Mormonism and the Magic World View”.
    Suddenly this religion that they thought they knew doesn’t match reality.

  18. MistakenTestimony says:

    That’s true. It seems that with the LDS church, any good publicity is actually benign for their image while any bad publicity is actually incredibly detrimental for their image. I guess that’s how it goes for false religions with a foundation built upon lies.

  19. Ralph says:

    Let’s get things straight here, a disciplinary council, and subsequent disfellowshipment or excommunication are not ‘trimming the dead wood’ as it appears some here believe it to be. There are 3 things that are being looked for these councils to go ahead, and they are in this priority –

    1) To protect and assist the innocents/victims:
    In this case with apostate teachings/ideology that is being publicly expounded it is the members that will listen to these thoughts and believe in them and follow them that are being protected. Apostasy is the only excommunication that is publicly announced in meetings so people know that that person is teaching something that opposes Church teachings. All other excommunications are not announced.

    2) To look after the welfare of the sinner’s soul:
    We teach that if anyone should partake of the sacrament unworthily, they are bringing damnation to their soul (1 Cor 11:27-29; 3 Nephi 18:28-29). And we also teach that those who have more truth/knowledge of God and Jesus will be judged that much more than others (Luke 12:48; D&C 82:3). So if they do not want to repent at the point in time when the council is being held then they are excommunicated to allow them time to repent if they want without bringing more damnation to themselves. That is why she was given a list of conditions, she is quite welcome to come to church and listen to the talks and lessons, but she cannot give a talk, teach a lesson, or even say a prayer (but it appears that she can still give some input into the lesson ie answer questions but I am not sure on that one). It is hoped that being at church she will feel of the Spirit and learn the error of her ways. Falcon – that is why we allow people to remain members even if they have aberrant ideas, so that hopefully they will change them as they learn and understand more. It is only when they try teaching these aberrant thoughts as truth/doctrine in public when they are warned and then disciplinary council if they do not heed the warnings.

    3) Protect the name of the Church:
    This can be seen if the excommunicated is a murderer, sex predator, embezzler, etc; but in this case as you can see points 1 and 2 took priority, otherwise they would not have gone through with the excommunication because as some have said here, this has given the Church some bad press and a bad name in some members’ eyes.

    These 3 points are explained clearly at the beginning of a disciplinary council, I know because as ward clerk I have been to many of them.

    So while this is getting bad press it is actually being blown right out of proportion as the church leaders are looking out for the salvation of the members and Sister Kate Kelly as well.

  20. MistakenTestimony says:

    Ralph, I agree with you, but only up to a certain point when you said, “the church leaders are looking out for the salvation of the members and Sister Kate Kelly as well.” The ward clerks may be concerned about the salvation of the excommunicants, and even their bishops may be concerned about their salvation, but at the highest level of the top 15, they are only concerned about one thing and that is the Almighty Dollar. And these 15 heretical leaders are children of the Enemy who is only concerned with one thing which is unrighteousness. Ultimately for the current top 15, if they were to release their authoritarian grip even a little they have deemed it to be more damaging to their bottom line than creating an authority vacuum and theological free-for-all. I mean just look at the mainstream churches and the community of christ, the current top 15 know that there is no money in those real world models. Now regarding lower levels who may think they are concerned with the salvation of their members, the road to hell was paved with best intentions.

  21. Ralph says:


    I dont know how you got money mixed up in this. If you read the letter sent to Sister Kelly it states that while excommunicated she cannot pay tithes or other offerings. This is a condition for all excommunicated. Since this is a ‘high profile’ case, there are many sympathisers as written in the OP above who are now trying to get their membership looked at to try and reverse the decision made in this case. A percentage of these people will also be excommunicated, meaning less money into the church coffers, another percentage of these will go inactive which experience has shown me 99.999% of inactives do not pay tithing or other offerings (I do know an inactive that does pay tithing), again less money into the coffers. Then there are the members who know nothing about the case but see the bad press and go inactive, again less money into the coffers. So over all there is a loss in tithing and offerings being paid if the decision is not reversed.

    And yes I do know the road to hell is paved with good intentions, all I need to do is look at the people on this site – perspective mate, perspective.

  22. MistakenTestimony says:

    You reason like FoF, m8, nice straw man by the way. I’ll repeat what I said,

    “Ultimately for the current top 15, if they were to release their authoritarian grip even a little they have deemed it to be more damaging to their bottom line than creating an authority vacuum and theological free-for-all. I mean just look at the mainstream churches and the community of christ, the current top 15 know that there is no money in those real world models.”

  23. Ralph says:

    I am not arguing against your point that they want to keep their ‘authoritarian grip’, even though from my perspective I disagree with that. I am arguing about your point on money being the bottom line. Ultimately by excommunicating Sister Kelly they are going to see a decrease in tithes and offerings because people who are either sympathetic with her (a group of these people are already petitioning to have their church membership questioned as it states in the OP above, so this is fact not supposition) or who see the bad press will leave the church by excommunication, becoming inactive, or ask for their name to be removed. If they wanted to keep the money flowing in then they would keep her in the church but try to reign her in somehow. That way they can keep the money and their ‘authoritarian grip’. But as it stands they are keeping their grip but losing their money.

    So its not a straw man, just common financial sense.

  24. MistakenTestimony says:

    So are you suggesting that if the top 15 behave only semi-authoritarian then that would increase their money flow? No, it won’t. Like I said, look at the mainline denominations and the community of christ. They are all in theological free-for-all mode and look at their financial standing, they are all shrinking. So it is true that if they were to just allow outspoken dissenters of Mormon orthodoxy to remain in the church then this would increase their bottom, but that would only be momentarily so. A religion that does not take a stand on their own doctrine and allows anything to go will eventually vanish as we see from history and today. And when a religion vanishes so does all things associated with it, includes its money flow. The current top 15 see the writing on the wall and if they were to release pressure off the cooker they know it would explode. The Almighty Dollar alone rules the decisions of the LDS religion. Now as your prophet said after completing his multi-billion dollar (with a ‘B’) development project, “Let’s go shopping!” I sure am glad that the top 15 are so concerned about the salvation of John and Kate.

  25. MichaelSonOfAdam says:

    It is often necessary to separate the wheat from the chaff. Too often, members of the Church take their membership for granted and forget that they have agreed to live according to a set of commandments. Membership in the Church is voluntary, and members are free to leave at any time should they feel their faith is insufficient to live according to Church guidelines.
    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is not a democracy, nor is it an organization that is run by popular opinion.
    Those who have petitioned to have disciplinary action taken against them are the ones James 1:8 refers to when it states: “A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.” Their faith has wavered to the point where they are more interested in pursuing what they perceive as social injustice rather than the revealed word of God.

  26. Mike R says:


    You said that the Mormon church is not a democracy , nor a organization that is run by popular
    opinion .
    I agree that an organization can disciple members for violating it’s rules of belief / conduct .
    But concerning the Mormon church and it’s claims of authority , this issue with priesthood
    is something that shines the spotlight on the men who run the church as being reliable guides
    in spiritual truths — gospel doctrine , and seeing as how they short changed black men for
    so long by withholding “priesthood ” from them , no doubt Mormon women sense that they
    also have been short changed . If that is how they view their situation they have a good point.
    Bottom line , the leaders of the Mormon church are not who they claim to be , their alleged
    exclusive authority is not from God ,they’re merely religious men atop a wealthy organization .
    Mormons ( men and women ) would do well do exchange their leaders with the apostles who
    Jesus sent out to preach the salvation message , and as concerns any ” priesthood ” both men
    women who are saved and follow the only High Priest —- Jesus — receive ” authority ” to
    represent Him .

Leave a Reply