General Conference October 2013 Mormon Membership Hits 15M

06 October

salt-lake-templeWith bated breath (eye roll) we waited for the Salt Lake Tribune’s article to make its appearance giving us a synopsis of the talks presented at the semi-annual 183rd General Conference of the LDS Church.  So now that I have it in black and white I’m breaking this down to see for myself if the words of these Mormon leaders are 1. truthful and 2. umm…truthful.

The first subject on today’s docket reads like this;

““It is wrong to assume that Mormons who leave the faith “have been offended or lazy or sinful,”…“It is not that simple,” said Dieter F. Uchtdorf, second counselor in the LDS Church’s governing First Presidency.

Some struggle with “unanswered questions about things that have been done or said in the past,” Uchtdorf explained. “We openly acknowledge that in nearly 200 years of church history — along with an uninterrupted line of inspired, honorable and divine events — there have been some things said and done that could cause people to question.”

“To be perfectly frank,” Uchtdorf said, “there have been times when members or leaders in the church have simply made mistakes. There may have been things said or done that were not in harmony with our values, principles or doctrine.”

God is perfect and his doctrine is pure, he said, but human beings — including LDS leaders — are not.””

So my take on Mr. Uchtdorf’s message is this…

Telling members how to think or behave hasn’t worked in the past so why should your words from behind that pulpit change the minds of Mormons today that call and write to me calling me every name in the book?

I’ve been accused of being “Korihor” (oooh, scary!), a child abuser (unbelievable), a whore, liar, scumbag, worthless, out for financial gain (my “pay” from 2004 through today stands at a whopping four dollars), a fraud, traitor, idiot, stupid, ugly, and the “n” word. I’ve also been told that I must have had my feelings hurt or that I just couldn’t live up to the high standards of the Church and on and on it goes.

With attitudes like this why would it just stop because leaders of the Church said to do so? The fruits of the Spirit are love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance – Galatians 5:22-23. I ask; where are the fruits of the Spirit in any of the name calling?

If your teachings are truly Christian, wouldn’t its members reflect as much?

The truth about why people leave…

It’s not that past leaders have made mistakes Mr. Uchtdorf. All doctrine, prophecies and teachings of the LDS Church are heretical. I’ve only found one thing in the Church that is correct – make that two. Jesus died on a cross and He was resurrected on the 3rd day. The reason why He was crucified isn’t part of why the Church is correct mind you. It’s correct because they teach He died on the cross.  The same goes for Jesus being resurrected on the 3rd day.  Everything else (and I do mean everything) is heretical.

When he said that some leaders have done things that are wrong was he referring to Joseph Smith marrying under-age girls or marrying women who were pregnant with their husband’s baby? Maybe he was referring to Parley Pratt running away with another man’s wife or it could be Mountain Meadows Massacre when the Church viciously murdered 120 innocent Christian men, women and children who happened to be traveling through Utah on the way to California?

The second part of this report spoke of Mr. Monson’s claim the Church’s membership numbers has now reached 15 million.

“LDS Church President Thomas S. Monson opened the conference by announcing that global Mormon membership has reached 15 million.”

Wow. Really?

Does that include every single person that’s ever joined Mormonism?

Does this include all those who died this year?

Does this include everyone who’s left the Church?

Why does the Church keep people on their rolls up to the age of 110 whether they’re dead or alive?

Does the 15 million include all those who are dead but baptized into Mormonism?

If you haven’t read Helen Radkey’s latest report yet we have it here!  People like Ivan the Terrible, Ann Boleyn, and King Edward VIII, are just a few of the latest names she was able to retrieve from the LDS files known as FamilySearch.

Does the 15m include these people?

The next subject that piqued my interest was the depression and suicide topic that’s a huge problem in Utah.

““In the afternoon, LDS apostle Jeffrey R. Holland tackled a difficult issue: “major depressive disorder,” commonly called depression…Holland encouraged members with depression to get professional help…”

“ … If you had appendicitis, God would expect you to seek a priesthood blessing and get the best medical care available. So, too, with emotional disorders,” he said. “Our Father in Heaven expects us to use all of the marvelous gifts he has provided in this glorious dispensation.”

Those suffering should not consider suicide, Holland pleaded. “Whatever your struggle — mental or emotional or physical or otherwise — don’t vote against the preciousness of life by ending it. … Trust in God. Hold on to his love.”

The rest of us, he said, “can help by being merciful, nonjudgmental and kind.””

Of course I also agree that no one needs to take their own life. Once again though the Church’s first advice is to go to the Church and then the doctor…why? Would God really expect you to call the Church first if you had appendicitis?  I have to say that when this happened to me the Church never entered my brainwaves. Why would anyone who’s suffering from a medical emergency call for a blessing?

As for the problem with depression in Utah…

There are so many parameters in this subject matter and there’s no one answer that fits everyone. It’s more than curious that Utah’s suicide rate is always above the national average.

In August the papers in Utah published an article stating the suicide numbers for 2013 would be higher than last year’s. I’ve noticed there is finally a concerted effort to meet this challenge head on by providing resources to those suffering from depression as well as different measures of prevention. These are all really good steps in the right direction, but again I have to ask; if this is Zion why is this a huge problem there?  God wants His creation to live, not die! 

Another item I thought was interesting was the Church’s comments about the seemingly growing feminist movement in and out of the Church.

Now the pastors I’ve heard over the years that talk about the roles of women in the eyes of God have pretty much said the same thing; love God, honor your husband, be a role model for the younger generation, etc.

I’m absolutely convinced if the Church taught the truth about the roles of women (men too) there wouldn’t be such confusion. By propagating false teachings about whom you are in Christ and teaching you can become a god/goddess someday leaves the door wide open to all sorts of evil.

By teaching you have to be perfect, give all you have to the Church (and not just monetarily), get married and have kids (aka sex for salvation), it’s no wonder there’s so much animosity, uncertainty and depression in my beloved home state of Utah.

And at the end of the article was a quote by Mr. Uchtdorf;

“Regardless of one’s circumstances, personal history or strength of faith, he said, “there is room for you in this church.”

I have to disagree with that statement 100%. There’s no room in the Church for anyone who questions the teachings – ever. It wouldn’t matter if the Church grew to 150 million members; those who question and doubt will never find a place in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Please, don’t forget to pray for those who listen to and believe these self-proclaimed men (and women) of God. Pray that God would put a hedge of protection around their hearts to guard them from soaking these things in.

If you’re LDS please know that we don’t write and publish these things out of animosity. On the contrary, we care deeply for the Mormon people and only pray you have the very best in life and that’s the real Jesus of the Bible!

With Love in Christ;

Michelle Grim

1 Cor. 1:18

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