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Aussie gov't investigates child worthiness interviews

Posted: 07 May 2018, 04:43
by SamBee
http://amp.smh.com.au/national/mormons- ... 4zddg.html
Australian children as young as 12 are being asked explicit questions about their sexual thoughts and whether they masturbate, as adult male religious figures in the Mormon church use one-on-one interviews to test children's sexual "purity".

The invasive questioning has been described as an "abuse" of children, according to leaked correspondence from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

Re: Aussie gov't investigates child worthiness interviews

Posted: 07 May 2018, 10:58
by Roy
Reading the article, I feel that both sides are being less than fully unbiased.

For example, I do not think that church doctrine or policy is that M is next to murder in seriousness. I also believe that most bishops would just ask the law of chastity question and move on. I do believe that there was more variation in worthiness interviews in the past - more deviation from the script.

I also felt that the church representative was less than fully open in saying that the interviews provide an opportunity for the youth to talk and that parents are encouraged to be in an adjoining room. I particularly seized on the adjoining room concept as being somewhat misleading. Are there chapels with some sort of waiting room adjoining to the bishops office? I assume most people wait out in the hall or in the foyer depending on the layout of the building. Did the church representative mean "in the general vicinity" when he said "adjoining room" ?

Re: Aussie gov't investigates child worthiness interviews

Posted: 07 May 2018, 13:08
by Roadrunner
Roy wrote:
07 May 2018, 10:58
Reading the article, I feel that both sides are being less than fully unbiased.
Agreed Roy - the article seemed a little inflammatory but unfortunately I have to say it rings true with me and is believable. I wonder if teenager worthiness interviews may change dramatically in upcoming years and may become heavily scripted or mere formality, for example like the 8 year old interviews before baptism where nothing difficult is discussed.

Re: Aussie gov't investigates child worthiness interviews

Posted: 07 May 2018, 16:14
by SamBee
Roy wrote:
07 May 2018, 10:58

For example, I do not think that church doctrine or policy is that M is next to murder in seriousness. I also believe that most bishops would just ask the law of chastity question and move on. I do believe that there was more variation in worthiness interviews in the past - more deviation from the script.
I don't know. Ever read "The Miracle of Forgiveness"? Scary stuff.
Roy wrote:
07 May 2018, 10:58
I also believe that most bishops would just ask the law of chastity question and move on. I do believe that there was more variation in worthiness interviews in the past - more deviation from the script.
Exactly. I also think that many bishops must be incredibly uncomfortable asking such questions. I wouldn't like to go into big detail about this.

Re: Aussie gov't investigates child worthiness interviews

Posted: 07 May 2018, 16:56
by dande48
Question: Where does it talk about an Aussie Goverment investigation? I couldn't find anything on it.

It did sound like it was written by a ex-mormon with unfavorable opinions. Things were exaggerated. On M being next to murder, I'm pretty sure the doctrine states that Sexual Sin is next to shedding innocent blood. They are both "categories" of sin. But that's a little like saying the US government holds the crime of "cat-calling" next to high treason... (which just maybe is starting to feel a little true). In any rate, everyone exaggerates their stories and experiences, including the Church. I don't think it's right, but it's nothing less than I'd expect.
Roadrunner wrote:
07 May 2018, 13:08
... for example like the 8 year old interviews before baptism where nothing difficult is discussed.
I remember with my 8 year old interview, when the bishop asked if there were any serious sins that needed to be resolved by proper authority... that was a VERY difficult question to spring on a kid.

Re: Aussie gov't investigates child worthiness interviews

Posted: 08 May 2018, 02:52
by SamBee
A bit of background: the Royal Commission's investigation has been into institutional sex abuse in general, not just LDS.

The Anglican/Episcopal church in Australia is having to sell half of its chapels in Tasmania to pay compensation to abuse victims. Heavy stuff. A lot of these are historic buildings.

http://abc.net.au/news/2018-05-07/angli ... ia/9735404

Re: Aussie gov't investigates child worthiness interviews

Posted: 08 May 2018, 10:47
by Roadrunner
dande48 wrote:
07 May 2018, 16:56

I remember with my 8 year old interview, when the bishop asked if there were any serious sins that needed to be resolved by proper authority... that was a VERY difficult question to spring on a kid.
Figures. We'd find a way to screw up an easy, uplifting interview with a 7 year old the week before they are baptized.

Re: Aussie gov't investigates child worthiness interviews

Posted: 08 May 2018, 16:17
by SamBee
dande48 wrote:
07 May 2018, 16:56
Question: Where does it talk about an Aussie Goverment investigation? I couldn't find an]ything on it.
It's mentioned by name - "The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse". That will be a federal not a state investigation (since Queen Elizabeth is technically head of state - much like Canada). The Commission is not specifically investigating Mormonism, but all major religious bodies and presumably the scouts, schools, children's homes etc are in the mix as well.
It did sound like it was written by a ex-mormon with unfavorable opinions. Things were exaggerated. On M being next to murder, I'm pretty sure the doctrine states that Sexual Sin is next to shedding innocent blood.
Well at least one of those exmos is mentioned. I agree in that sense, it does have that flavor, and it is highly misleading. But then again "Miracle of Forgiveness". I wouldn't recommend that book to anyone.

I don't think most bishops look forward to asking these questions, it's not like they're drooling about the fact they're going to ask some little girl/boy about their pecadillos. A lot of the time it's one vague question about chastity and that's it. If I were a bishop I'd dread it. I'm sure there have been some perverts - but a minority. I don't think it's a good aspect of our church.

Our interviews tend to.yes/no answers. I did have to ask for clarification on a couple of points the first time round.