Race and The Priesthood

Public forum to discuss questions about Mormon history and doctrine.
GBSmith
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Re: Race and The Priesthood

Post by GBSmith » 13 Dec 2013, 06:45

Ann wrote:
Sheldon wrote:
Richard Bushman came to pretty much the same conclusion
"It is written as a historian might tell the story," Bushman says from his home in New York, "not as a theological piece, trying to justify the practice."

By depicting the exclusion as fitting with the common practices of the day, says Bushman, who wrote "Rough Stone Rolling," a critically acclaimed biography of Smith, "it drains the ban of revelatory significance, makes it something that just grew up and, in time, had to be eliminated."

But accepting that, Bushman says, "requires a deep reorientation of Mormon thinking."

Mormons believe that their leaders are in regular communication with God, so if you say Young could make a serious error, he says, "it brings into question all of the prophet’s inspiration."
Just curious, where is this quote from? Thanks for including it.
http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/news/57241 ... n.html.csp

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SilentDawning
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Re: Race and The Priesthood

Post by SilentDawning » 13 Dec 2013, 07:36

Now, this article is really getting there. Thanks GBSmith.

NOt only does the article reiterate Bushman's statement that Mormons will have to adjust their thinking about prophetic infallibility, it goes further by desribing pleas from LDS people for apologies for the priesthood ban, and most of all, calls for greater awareness -- such as placement of the disavowal in the curriculum etcetera. They also quote Uchdorft's previous statement that leaders have made mistakes that are not in harmony with our values and even doctrine. There is yet another statement that indicates Mormons need to start acknowledging that God works through imperfect men, and implies this will be a change for the population at large.

As we have seen in the past, we can't expect that overnight, the overconfidence that average Mormons have in every statement a prophet makes over the pulpit will vanish into the halls of personal judgment and healthy skepticism -- but we at least have another statement that shores up the idea that there are some significant flaws in our culture and the beliefs of the members.

I want to recap statements that speak to the concerns we see popping up here:

1. Uchdorfts assurance we are welcome.
2. Uchdorft's comment about mistakes from past leaders.
3. Wirthlin's statement that there should be respect for people who are tired in the church [Holland kind of alluded to his last conference as well, about slowing down lest we heap depression on ourselves]
4. The disavowal of the priesthood ban.
5. BKP's statement that leaders should not view members are mere resources to staff the church (which you could argue counters some of his statements in the Unwritten Order of Things about serving where placed until released).
6. Elevation of Ward Council to at least the same level or higher than PEC.
7. Uchdorft's statement that people in the church have the rigth to worship God according to the dictates of their conscience.

It's easy to reflect on the things that bother us, but when I read this list, I feel a bit of a lift and hope that eventually, we might have the kind o church I can engage with again....

Thanks GBSmith!!! You made my day!
Last edited by SilentDawning on 13 Dec 2013, 21:45, edited 1 time in total.
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mom3
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Re: Race and The Priesthood

Post by mom3 » 13 Dec 2013, 12:22

One additional hopeful thought. It's 4 pages long, but some additional good thoughts are tucked in it.

http://www.deseretnews.com/article/8655 ... trine.html
"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

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SamBee
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Re: Race and The Priesthood

Post by SamBee » 13 Dec 2013, 15:07

The only way I can deal with this is as water under the bridge.
DASH1730 "An Area Authority...[was] asked...who...would go to the Telestial kingdom. His answer: "murderers, adulterers and a lot of surprised Mormons!"'
1ST PRES 1978 "[LDS] believe...there is truth in many religions and philosophies...good and great religious leaders... have raised the spiritual, moral, and ethical awareness of their people. When we speak of The [LDS] as the only true church...it is...authorized to administer the ordinances...by Jesus Christ... we do not mean... it is the only teacher of truth."

Ann
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Re: Race and The Priesthood

Post by Ann » 13 Dec 2013, 15:58

GBSmith wrote:
"It is written as a historian might tell the story," Bushman says from his home in New York, "not as a theological piece, trying to justify the practice."

By depicting the exclusion as fitting with the common practices of the day, says Bushman, who wrote "Rough Stone Rolling," a critically acclaimed biography of Smith, "it drains the ban of revelatory significance, makes it something that just grew up and, in time, had to be eliminated."

But accepting that, Bushman says, "requires a deep reorientation of Mormon thinking."

Mormons believe that their leaders are in regular communication with God, so if you say Young could make a serious error, he says, "it brings into question all of the prophet’s inspiration."
http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/news/57241 ... n.html.csp[/quote]

If the priesthood ban is drained of revelatory significance because racism was common practice, I hope polygamy won't be reinvested with revelatory significance because it wasn't common practice. I am not optimistic about the upcoming installment(s?) on the subject, but I hope I'm wrong.
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mackay11
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Re: Race and The Priesthood

Post by mackay11 » 14 Dec 2013, 05:31

mom3 wrote:One additional hopeful thought. It's 4 pages long, but some additional good thoughts are tucked in it.

http://www.deseretnews.com/article/8655 ... trine.html
It's good that his is getting promoted. I really hope this becomes common knowledge.

I still have some issues with the way lots of this is being "spun."

For example:
Church members are cheering the enhanced pages, especially the one on race and the priesthood, which plainly "disavows" theories some critics have claimed were church doctrine and the basis for a ban on blacks holding the priesthood, a ban lifted by revelation in 1978.
If the "theories" are in a signed letter by the first presidency, why the need for the slur suggesting it's only ideas from critics.
https://archive.org/stream/LowryNelson1 ... 5/mode/1up

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SilentDawning
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Re: Race and The Priesthood

Post by SilentDawning » 14 Dec 2013, 07:11

I think this is the way its going to go down in the minds of TBM 's -- Brigham young had a theory (like he had "Adam-God" theory) that was accepted as policy without necessarily revelatory confirmation. The church reversed the policy in 1978 by revelation. Then, in 2013, the Church disavowed the theories that led to BY's original policy.

This conveniently avoids the implication that revelations of prophets can be wrong, because the ban was never revelation, TBM's keep their inner peace, the cognitive dissonance disappears.

I'm also a bit ticked they didn't make this a formal announcement as well. Nonetheless, I think there's enough for a person like me to hang their hat on. Prophets make BIG mistakes sometimes. There is no clear way of determining what is revelation and what isn't as the prophets rarely come out with things they say ARE in fact direct revelation in modern times. And claims that the Lord will never allow individuals to lead the people astray are mistaken statements -- even when they come from a prophet.

That's enough for me personally, even if the TBM 's don't see it, I've been unorthodox for three years now -- the trend can continue.
"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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mackay11
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Re: Race and The Priesthood

Post by mackay11 » 14 Dec 2013, 09:42

SilentDawning wrote:I think this is the way its going to go down in the minds of TBM 's -- Brigham young had a theory (like he had "Adam-God" theory) that was accepted as policy without necessarily revelatory confirmation. The church reversed the policy in 1978 by revelation. Then, in 2013, the Church disavowed the theories that led to BY's original policy.

This conveniently avoids the implication that revelations of prophets can be wrong, because the ban was never revelation, TBM's keep their inner peace, the cognitive dissonance disappears.

I'm also a bit ticked they didn't make this a formal announcement as well. Nonetheless, I think there's enough for a person like me to hang their hat on. Prophets make BIG mistakes sometimes. There is no clear way of determining what is revelation and what isn't as the prophets rarely come out with things they say ARE in fact direct revelation in modern times. And claims that the Lord will never allow individuals to lead the people astray are mistaken statements -- even when they come from a prophet.

That's enough for me personally, even if the TBM 's don't see it, I've been unorthodox for three years now -- the trend can continue.
I'll just keep the 1947 letters to hand if needed. They show me that I'm better off working out my own view of God's will for me than to listen to a man who no longer asks questions and assumes that the prejudices of the past are the commandments and doctrines of today.

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Life_Journey_of_Matt
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Re: Race and The Priesthood

Post by Life_Journey_of_Matt » 18 Dec 2013, 19:25

Ray Degraw wrote:Alex, it is referred to as "policy" and not "doctrine" because David O. McKay said it was policy and not doctrine in 1954 - after the 1947 statement - after (can't believe I'm drawing a blank on the name of the brother) a historian compiled evidence that it didn't start with Joseph Smith or a revelation. That statement by Pres. McKay was one of the necessary steps, I think, to the process of beginning to clear up the former misconceptions and lead to OD2 in 1978 - and it's the genesis for why the current leaders speak of "theories" and "policy" rather than "doctrine".
I believe you're referring to Lester Bush. http://www.dialoguejournal.com/2012/mor ... -overview/
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Shawn
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Re: Race and The Priesthood

Post by Shawn » 19 Dec 2013, 10:19

Does anyone have the book "David O. McKay and the Rise of Modern Mormonism"? I am going crazy trying to find a source to a quote in that book. It's the quote by Richard Jackon on page 104:
Image
On Google Books, it won't let me see note 188 for chapter 4. What is that reference?!

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