lds USA vs lds England

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EnglishMormon
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Joined: 20 Jul 2015, 08:32

lds USA vs lds England

Post by EnglishMormon » 20 Jul 2015, 12:11

I think there is a big difference with how church members live and treat others in USA than here in England, I have a strong testimony of the gospel and I'm very active within my ward, but it seems to me everyone is more judgemental and harsher over in America? The gospel teachings are the same but such a big cultural gap. Best example going on a mission is a MUST.

Minyan Man
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Re: lds USA vs lds England

Post by Minyan Man » 20 Jul 2015, 12:36

Can you give us some examples?

EnglishMormon
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Re: lds USA vs lds England

Post by EnglishMormon » 20 Jul 2015, 12:57

Ok, we had some American missionaries come over and during a group conversation my brother in-law (who is single) but again very active good testimony was told the girls would love him over at Utah, he said he didn't serve a mission and then the elders said "oh they won't like you because you haven't served".
Another missionary said he felt like he had to go on a mission because of the pressure of serving back home because his dad and brothers all served.

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Holy Cow
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Re: lds USA vs lds England

Post by Holy Cow » 20 Jul 2015, 13:24

EnglishMormon wrote:it seems to me everyone is more judgemental and harsher over in America?
Not quite sure I agree with that generalization. My very TBM wife had a friend in England, who was curious about Mormonism. My wife did her best to answer all of her questions, but when her questions became more and more in depth, she recommended that her friend get in touch with the missionaries in her town. She did, and started taking the discussions. But, when she started attending church, she started emailing my wife about all the problems that she was having with members, and they were similar to the same issues that new members can run into anywhere. People were telling her that she was dressed inappropriately for church, an over-zealous ward mission leader caused a lot of problems when he started to bash the Anglican church (which she was a member of), and when she asked questions about the plan of salvation during a RS lesson she was told by one of the older sisters that she should keep her questions to herself and just talk with the missionaries so they could get on with the lesson. She liked the doctrine, but the members scared her away from the church. Unfortunately, there are judgmental and over-enthusiastic people everywhere. Not sure it has much to do with geography.
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Curt Sunshine
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Re: lds USA vs lds England

Post by Curt Sunshine » 20 Jul 2015, 16:56

Based on my experiences in many locations, culture tends to more accepting of differences the lower the percentage of members there are in the area - which, as a historian and social scientist by nature, I know is true all around the world and in all societies and religions.

It also depends heavily (hugely) on the tone set by the local leadership. You can have extremely tolerant and even accepting wards in the heart of Utah and extremely intolerant and unaccepting wards in areas where one ward covers many square miles.
I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken

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SilentDawning
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Re: lds USA vs lds England

Post by SilentDawning » 20 Jul 2015, 20:36

I have found the idea that people who serve missions have greater status than people who did not serve a mission is a well-worn cultural trait in our religion -- at least, in three places -- the far out mission field, denser areas like California, and medium places like Southeastern USA.

I have heard its terrible in Utah, and this missionary you spoke to may confirm that perception.

I think Ray's assessment that it's probably worse in Mormontown than in far-flung areas may have some validity though. I don't agree, however, that individual leaders have a lot influence over this particular cultural value, although they do influence many other values members hold.
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD

"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."

A man asked Jesus "do all roads lead to you?" Jesus responds,”most roads don’t lead anywhere, but I will travel any road to find you.” Adapted from The Shack, William Young

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LookingHard
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Re: lds USA vs lds England

Post by LookingHard » 21 Jul 2015, 08:20

Ray DeGraw wrote:Based on my experiences in many locations, culture tends to more accepting of differences the lower the percentage of members there are in the area - which, as a historian and social scientist by nature, I know is true all around the world and in all societies and religions.

It also depends heavily (hugely) on the tone set by the local leadership. You can have extremely tolerant and even accepting wards in the heart of Utah and extremely intolerant and unaccepting wards in areas where one ward covers many square miles.
I think America is a big place and there is not "one" culture - even in the church. I don't mean to stereotype, but stereotypes often have some basis. I have heard there are Utah Mormons (very strict and very focused on outward appearances of righteousness), California Mormons (much more liberal and laid back), then the rest of the US Mormons. The stereotypes do not describe the variability even within those groups (i.e. "Jack Mormons" - people in Utah that join just because everyone else is Mormon, but still drink on the weekends) and some stern members all over the country.

I have heard that Mormons are great neighbors when they are a small %, but get enough together and it can flip to be a lot less great as neighbors.

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russdm
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Re: lds USA vs lds England

Post by russdm » 21 Jul 2015, 13:44

LookingHard wrote: I have heard that Mormons are great neighbors when they are a small %, but get enough together and it can flip to be a lot less great as neighbors.
That's because they start to form a mob and can have the social attitudes that gets provided reinforced. When others approve of what you are doing and they are doing, it is easier to do more of that. It's how we get the "Everyone is smoking" despite it being false.

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