Church video for SS lesson

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Roy
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Church video for SS lesson

Post by Roy » 23 Apr 2019, 11:18

SS lesson scheduled for May 19th.

https://www.lds.org/study/manual/come-f ... 9?lang=eng
I watched the video associated with this lesson about how to talk to people that do not accept "the Lord's standard of marriage". I have some commentary.
1) the protagonist was verbally attacked for her religious beliefs by another student. This was in a public setting moderated by a professor but at least it wasn't the college professor that did the attacking as in the "God is not dead" movie.
2) protagonist talks to bishop. This happens during an activity making hygiene kits. Appears to be a student ward. Bishop appears to be in his 30s with a blue button down shirt. no tie, no jacket. When protagonist asks to talk he says to have a seat in his "office" but this must have been in jest because they just sit on the stage in full view of everybody. I am wondering if the producers of the video are thinking that the optics of having a young woman going into and older gray haired man's office alone for advice might not be great. The bishops advice is pretty phenomenal. He basically says to listen and try to understand where the antagonist is coming from. He says that rather than try to "win" the conversation, the ultimate goal should be to achieve respectful space to have our beliefs as we respect others to have the same space. Bishop also recommends reading scriptures for more than just 10 minutes a day.
3) montage of protagonist reading scriptures.
4) conclusion discussion between protagonist and antagonist. Protagonist asks antagonist to explain motivations. Antagonist talks about moral code and fairness for all. Protagonist says that she is all about fairness including standing up for Gay rights and that gay people should not be discriminated against in cases of employment or housing. She then goes on to make a religious liberty argument that appears shaky to me. She equates the right to be gay with the right to be religious and says that a nurse with religious convictions about abortion should not be required to assist that procedure. Also that a marriage therapist the believes in traditional marriage should be able to politely decline to take SSM patients. The religious beliefs of these persons should be accommodated similarly to the accommodation afforded to gay individuals. You get to be openly religious just like a gay person gets to be openly gay. This is presented as being "fair to everyone."

I wish the antagonist could have shared the story of a gay family member that was finally able to marry after many years of being denied. That would have made a better argument and serve to humanize the antagonist. This would have better explained why the antagonist was so vocal and passionate about the issue (rather than just being an atheist with a chip on her shoulder) but that is probably not the intent of this 12 minute video.

I am having a difficult time understanding how the protagonist came up with these religious liberty talking points after reading the scriptures. I also find the religious liberty argument presented here inconsistent. A marriage therapist should be able to deny patients in SSM relationships because of religious convictions? Does it matter if the marriage counselor is the only counselor in town and the closest available alternative is a long drive away? Why does that not extend to employers that do not wish to hire openly gay individuals or landlords that do not wish to rent to openly gay individuals? Do employers and landlords not get to express their religious convictions?

The video ends on a reconciliatory tone between the protagonist and the antagonist where the antagonist seems to be thoughtfully and respectfully considering the religious liberty argument.
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nibbler
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Re: Church video for SS lesson

Post by nibbler » 23 Apr 2019, 12:15

It's an interesting video that I feel shows both sides of an ugly coin. I find the video ironic in that the video is clearly designed to make me empathize with the church member that is attacked for their beliefs but the way that they caricaturize the person expressing the opposing view feels like a veiled attack of equal magnitude.

I guess this is a case of "know your audience" and the audience consists of members that have either experienced something similar or they feel similarly threatened.

I agree Roy, I do like the bishop's response.

I'm not sure how I feel about the overall lesson though. The lesson leads off with more anti-gay marriage rhetoric, continues with some condemning statements about divorce, the video brings up abortion... all within the context of a New Testament lesson. My main concern is that this lesson will become nothing more than a conservative pep rally in some wards.

I appreciate the call to have more constructive dialog. I do worry because I've been in lessons were we all assume were on the same side of a particular issue and when we make that assumption I've noticed that constructive dialog goes out the window. We think we're in a safe place so it's okay to attack.

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mom3
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Re: Church video for SS lesson

Post by mom3 » 23 Apr 2019, 13:46

In my mind, this is a fail from the get go. We skip plenty of details in Scripture. This could have been one of those. Second Jesus doesn't say these things, it's modern interpretations of men that say these things - whether it's divorce, gay marriage, or abortion.

Are they going to make a video about gluttony, laziness, ignoring the poor? Those were God condemned sins, too. So bad were those sins that 2 communities were wiped off the face of the earth (according to the Prophet Ezekiel and God)?

Even if a teacher tries to turn this lesson, it's a loss. The video has already set the stage. Sure the Bishop is chill but the message isn't.

Wrestling now if I am attending or not.
"I stayed because it was God and Jesus Christ that I wanted to follow and be like, not individual human beings." Chieko Okazaki Dialogue interview

"I am coming to envision a new persona for the Church as humble followers of Jesus Christ....Joseph and his early followers came forth with lots of triumphalist rhetoric, but I think we need a new voice, one of humility, friendship and service. We should teach people to believe in God because it will soften their hearts and make them more willing to serve." - Richard Bushman

AmyJ
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Re: Church video for SS lesson

Post by AmyJ » 23 Apr 2019, 13:56

mom3 wrote:
23 Apr 2019, 13:46
Even if a teacher tries to turn this lesson, it's a loss. The video has already set the stage. Sure the Bishop is chill but the message isn't.

Wrestling now if I am attending or not.
It should be R.S. (4th Sunday) - so it shouldn't be the main topic because this is from the S.S. lesson not R.S...

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mom3
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Re: Church video for SS lesson

Post by mom3 » 23 Apr 2019, 14:34

It should be R.S. (4th Sunday) - so it shouldn't be the main topic because this is from the S.S. lesson not R.S...
Well, I will skip SS then. I couldn't sit through class and not say way too much.
"I stayed because it was God and Jesus Christ that I wanted to follow and be like, not individual human beings." Chieko Okazaki Dialogue interview

"I am coming to envision a new persona for the Church as humble followers of Jesus Christ....Joseph and his early followers came forth with lots of triumphalist rhetoric, but I think we need a new voice, one of humility, friendship and service. We should teach people to believe in God because it will soften their hearts and make them more willing to serve." - Richard Bushman

nibbler
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Re: Church video for SS lesson

Post by nibbler » 23 Apr 2019, 14:37

This is one of the two SS lessons that will be covered the 3rd Sunday in May - May 19th.

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dande48
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Re: Church video for SS lesson

Post by dande48 » 23 Apr 2019, 15:42

To quote Omarosa,

Image

I think the angle they are trying to go for, is that sometimes modern prophetic revelation goes against the common consensus. And that's fair. I think religious liberty is often under threat when not conforming to the most popular beliefs. I think it is good to point that out, and come up with a way to respectfully co-exist. It's tough to be different.

But the trouble is... religious liberty (as with many political topics) is often viewed in one direction. It's "my religious liberty", rather than "their religious liberty". The Church, as a whole I feel, is concerned with their religious liberty, and sometimes "Christian" religious liberty. But no one ever seems concerned with "Islamic", "Hindu", "Athiest", or even "other Christian" religious liberty. Which is why I think the Bishop's response is a good approach, encouraging mutual understanding. But then it's misinterpreted, IMHO. Because you can't go around asking for the religious liberty to discriminate against others on the basis of their religious beliefs. And that's what happens.

Because we're all inherently "religionist". Everyone inherently discriminates against those with different religious views. And until we recognize that, no real solution can be reached, and religious liberty will always be a problem.
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On Own Now
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Re: Church video for SS lesson

Post by On Own Now » 24 Apr 2019, 12:02

I believe the Church's stake in religious liberty is about ensuring that they are not forced to recognize SSM or perform it in their buildings or temples. I don't see anything objectionable about their having the concern or about their trying to assert that they should be allowed to practice their religion the way they see fit. The people here may disagree with the Church over SSM, but it is the mainline view of most Mormons, and that is their right. The Church does not teach or practice any activity that is against the law with regard to SSM. I think they just want to make sure that they aren't forced into a corner over it.

I don't love the video (and I won't be using it in my SS lesson), but I have had people at work challenge me for being a Mormon and therefore opposed to SSM, which is none of my business. So... yeah.

What I do like about the video is that it encourages dialog and listening and respect, even if it is sometimes heavy-handed. The immediate issue of SSM aside, I do believe the world would be a lot better if we would spend more time not accusing each other; but trying to understand, or in the absence of understanding, just trying to be kind.

If it had been me, I would have made the two women in the video argue over which is their favorite; one asserting that it is Hawaii the other, the Red Sox. This could have illustrated how when two parties argue over politics or religion, they often don't even have a common ground that they are arguing over, thus making it impossible to convince or to be convinced, and that they should instead just seek to hear what the other person likes about the Red Sox, or about Hawaii, and then just nod and smile.
"Let us therefore no longer pass judgment on one another, but resolve instead never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of another." --Romans 14:13

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DarkJedi
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Re: Church video for SS lesson

Post by DarkJedi » 24 Apr 2019, 15:44

On Own Now wrote:
24 Apr 2019, 12:02
I believe the Church's stake in religious liberty is about ensuring that they are not forced to recognize SSM or perform it in their buildings or temples. I don't see anything objectionable about their having the concern or about their trying to assert that they should be allowed to practice their religion the way they see fit. The people here may disagree with the Church over SSM, but it is the mainline view of most Mormons, and that is their right. The Church does not teach or practice any activity that is against the law with regard to SSM. I think they just want to make sure that they aren't forced into a corner over it.
This, exactly. Whenever (always the same few) leaders of the church talk about religious liberty I think they are really talking about this. I agree, the Church - and every other church - should not be forced to recognize or perform SSM. We're not the only ones with this concern, the largest Christian denomination and many others have exactly the same fear. I do think middle ground could be reached, but on the other hand I also see no moves to force any church to recognize or perform SSM.
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Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

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dande48
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Re: Church video for SS lesson

Post by dande48 » 24 Apr 2019, 17:24

DarkJedi wrote:
24 Apr 2019, 15:44
... but on the other hand I also see no moves to force any church to recognize or perform SSM.
It feels like the boogey man to me. I think there's this pride in taking a moral stand, and "sacrificing" for religion. Many want to sacrifice and die as martyrs. Part of me wonders if the Church actually wants what they say they fear happening, to actually happen. But it's not going to. For one thing, we are not a company performing a service. We're explicitly forbidden to take money for our clergy to perform weddings, use the chapel for weddings, or the cultural hall for receptions. Second, the laws (at least in the US) give religions a LOT of leeway. Almost too much.

But I think when talking of religious liberty, the main focus is on companies and individuals. Should a company be able to enact policies which religiously discriminate, or are exempt from certain laws because of their owner's religious beliefs? Because currently, many do and are. Should an employed individual be allowed to discriminate in the work they take part in, because of their religious beliefs? It's complicated, but I'd also say no (and I've changed my mind about this). Mostly because I'd hate it if a company refused their services to me based on my religion or lifestyle. But some still do anyways.

No one is going to stop anyone from believing, practicing, or worshipping as they choose. It's just when your religion comes into conflict with the practicing of my religion, or living a peaceful, happy life, that there is trouble.
Last edited by dande48 on 25 Apr 2019, 09:20, edited 1 time in total.
"The whole world is a comedy to those that think, a tragedy to those that feel." - Horace Walpole

"Even though there are no ways of knowing for sure, there are ways of knowing for pretty sure."
-Lemony Snicket

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