Controversy

There’s a new video on YouTube that is a bit controversial. I’m too timid to be the first to put it on my blog. But I’ll give a brief summary. A missionary in France secretly taped his mission president berating his missionaries for masturbating. At first it doesn’t seem to be that big of a deal that he’s admonishing them to keep their thoughts pure. But then he blames their low baptism numbers on their lack of diligence in this matter.

The fact that they had any baptism in France I think is a small miracle.

I’ll let you look it up if you want to see it.

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14 thoughts on “Controversy

  1. Here’s the link (and don’t worry, I’ll take the heat :o)

    My favorite is how he refers to Masturbation as “Self Abuse” since that’s what the “brethren” call it. Apparently it’s not as harsh of a term!?! If you ask me, “self abuse” is a pretty harsh way to call an act that the majority of 19 yr old males do on a regular basis. We must be a self-abusive human race, then!

  2. By the way, It’s funny how the mission president talks about all the terrible pop-ups he’s getting. I NEVER get x-rated pop-ups. What kind of web sites is the guy visiting to get them!?! I would have to say definitely more than Yahoo and Hotmail (which he’s ragging on the missionaries for using).

    Well, it’s a good thing to know the missionaries in my mission were so pure (obviously, since we had so many baptisms in South America). Or was it that we were so IMPURE that we could turn on the charm more easily to all the teenage girls that always got baptized?

  3. This kind of attitude is pretty common in Mormonism, in my opinion. If things don’t go your way, it’s because you are sinning.

    The core of the problem is promises. Mormonism makes promises that don’t get delivered (whether it’s “you will get an answer to your prayers,” promises about success in the mission field, other “prophetic statements” made by leaders, or promises that appear to be made in patriarchal blessings and the like), and when they don’t get delivered, someone has to be blamed, since God does not lie.

    One way to weasel out of it is to show how the promise really was fulfilled, if you think about it a certain way. Like, in a figurative, not a literal sense. This is total crap, because it makes promises and prophecy worthless. If it can’t be understood, or worse, if it is actually misleading, it doesn;t help us in any way. And it becomes just the same as telephone psychics or tarot card readers who make vague, broad statements and let you justify how they really came true.

    Alternately, you blame someone for sinning. There’s a verse in D&C that can be understood to mean that all of God’s promises are conditioned on our obedience. So if the baptisms aren;t coming in, it must be because the missionaries are sinning too much. I my opinion, this line of thinking gets very spiritually abusive and spiritually self-abusive.

  4. Kullervo, you’ve mentioned this before and I find it quite interesting. Would you say that there is any room for promises from God? If so, can you give example(s)? (Sorry, I realize that question is vague, but my brain hurts right now, so I can’t reword it.)

    Please note: I’m not disagreeing that Mormons can make promises on God’s behalf that God never intended to make. And it’s a problem whenever it’s done—not to mention scripturally unsound, as in the example you give of tying my obedience to someone else’s decisions.

  5. I think that the mission president missed the mark when he speculated that maybe their small baptism numbers were a result of their sinful ways. For one, it ignores the 60% of the mission who havn’t been masturbating. Where are their baptisms? And what about all the missionaries in other parts of the world, some of whom are doing things far worse than masturbating, and they still baptize? Their mission has low baptisms because they are in France, nuff said. My mission was quite “obedient”, as it were, but we were in Italy, so baptisms were still quite low, and we were all fine with it. Does this mean he shouldn’t have made an effort to address something he saw as a problem? Of course not, but he went about all the wrong way, and in more than just in tying their sinning to low baptisms. He wasn’t being very inspiring at all.

  6. My experience was that it was sometimes the most unscrupulous and unethical missionaries who got the most baptisms.

    Tim, now your new homework assignment is to find a YouTube video of some Christian minister saying something outrageous.

  7. Tim, now your new homework assignment is to find a YouTube video of some Christian minister saying something outrageous.

    Easy, turn to TBN and then watch for 5 mintues. Or type “Jerry Falwell” into the YouTube search function.

    Frofreak,

    I agree with your comments, I wonder though, would this be considered speaking against the Lord’s anointed.

  8. You want outrageous? I’ll give you outrageous. Everyone knows that the LDS church’s most vocal critics have long been evangelicals who have long referred to LDS as a non-Christian “cult.” But how many know that the most ballyhooed (and greatest money-making) belief of American evangelicalism is the “any-moment, pre-tribulation rapture” belief? Some of the bestsellers of all time are books by Lindsey and LaHaye promoting it. Now that Romney is running for President (and a huge percentage of evangelicals supposedly would not vote for a Mormon), isn’t it time to look closely at evangelicalism’s favorite belief, especially since no church (or Christian theology) before 1830 ever taught it? (Briefly, the pre-trib or pre-Antichrist rapture is a sudden and secret coming of Christ which reportedly occurs several years before the final Second Coming!) Believe it or not, the leading authority on the long-covered-up history of the same “pre-trib rapture” belief is historian Dave MacPherson who has long lived in Utah. His Google pieces include “Pretrib Rapture Diehards” (brief exposure of some of the dishonesty embedded in pre-trib circles) and “Famous Rapture Watchers” (proof that no pre-1830 Christian leader expected to be “raptured” off earth before the final Antichrist and his “tribulation”). MacPherson’s 300-page bestselling book “The Rapture Plot” (see Armageddon Books online) names names and covers all of the scandals and dishonesty (rampant plagiarism found in books by Lindsey, LaHaye, Falwell, changing of early rapture documents, scandals, etc.) in pre-trib rapture circles here and abroad since 1830. His “Plot” book, BTW, is in the BYU library and libraries everywhere, and LDS sites have lately been citing his research. Naturally he is a bad name and enemy, as far as evangelical leaders are concerned, whose research should be ignored. At the same time, even evangelical scholars behind the scenes have quietly endorsed his findings – proof of a split between the scholarship and the leadership. If interested in the greatest scandal and cover-up in religion in the past 200 years, buy or borrow thru inter-library loan “The Rapture Plot.” You will wonder how a plot of monumental proportions could have escaped all religion researchers for more than a century! John

  9. I think it’s probably easier to find embarrassing Baptist moments because they’re more on the radar than the Mormons are for most people.

  10. John Dennis,

    While I agree with you that the rapture doctrine is extremely young and hardly biblical, and is something I would like to get a reasonable EC perspective on someday, I think it is hardly productive to the discussion at hand to try and one-up Tim’s original post in “outrageousness”. We’d all be better served discussing the issue at hand I think, and discussing the rapture another time. Maybe Tim could mention this topic in one of his upcoming posts? 😉

    Tim,

    No, I don’t think so. At least not in any way “sinful”, certainly not evil-speaking. For one, when we make covenants to not evil-speak the Lord’s annointed, that doesn’t mean we never disagree with them. It doesn’t necessarily mean that we are to never voice those disagreements to anyone, though you do need to be carefull here. For example, when we see leaders handling a situation a certain way, one with which we disagree, it is common practice to voice these disagreements in the privacy of our homes, to our spouses or siblings. When the disagreement is great enough, it would be appropriate to meet with the “offending” leader to share your concerns with him, in private. When you start becoming publicly outspoken, and trying to get others to join you “cause”, that’s where you get into trouble. I am not trying to do that here.

    Additionally, I hardly think my criticism was very harsh, I simply think he should tone down the rhetoric a bit. To be honest, it’s easy to be critical, but I can say that I would not like to be a mission president, especially if the missionaries I was over were far from obedient. In this regard, I can simpathize with his wanting to use harsh words. I still think I would have taken a different approach.

    You Mormon’s out there, am I overstepping my bounds?

  11. “You Mormon’s out there, am I overstepping my bounds?”

    Not really. You aren’t Mormon. He isn’t your Priesthood authority. If you want to criticize him, be my guest.

  12. Well, I am mormon, that’s why I was asking.

    Tim,

    I don’t know that I would be suprised, that would require some presumption on my part, something I wouldn’t dream of ever doing 😉 I would be interested though.

  13. Gentlemen, thank you for your thoughts on the video / audio clip. I know I am several months behind the times, but forums such as these are the primary reason I posted that audio that I happened to record several years ago. It helps me gain a broader perspective on what was said that day.

    Thanks!

    Equilibrium83

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