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Suicide and Hell - LDS Answer 2018

Posted: 03 Jul 2018, 07:21
by mom3 ... icide.html

It's worth the read.

Many good things in it. Including a financial donation.

One thing it lacks is our treatment of LGBTQ community. Address that, and I am on board.

Re: Suicide and Hell - LDS Answer 2018

Posted: 03 Jul 2018, 07:28
by BeJoyful
I saw this- lots of good things in it. I do agree though- they're avoiding a cause and talking about a symptom.

Have you watched "Believer"? It came out last week on HBO. I think Dan Reynolds did an excellent job for the most part.

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

Re: Suicide and Hell - LDS Answer 2018

Posted: 03 Jul 2018, 08:26
by dande48
Good article. It's another example of positive doctrinal change. It explicitly contradicts what past leaders have taught as doctrine, but in a way that carefully avoids undermining the authenticity or authority of past Church leaders. It reminds me not so much of rescinding the priesthood ban, but more like the doctrinal shift on birth control.
"There's an old sectarian notion that suicide is a sin and that someone who commits suicide is banished to hell forever. That is totally false," Elder Renlund said.
President Ballard called suicide a "very grievous sin" in his 1987 article, but he also said that he felt "that judgment for sin is not always as cut-and-dried as some of us seem to think."
I also thought towards the end there was another paradigm shift which was interesting,
"This is not your fault," he said. "This is not an indictment of your parenting. Saying 'how could my child have done this' is also not very helpful, because even you as the loving parent don't know enough to judge, and that judging is a completely unhelpful thing. Leave that to God."
... which goes contrary to the LDS mentality we often see, where parents are racked with guilt for wayward children.

As for the LGBT community, we're seeing a shift there as well. Just... a lot slower than many would like. But on the other hand, I'm come to realize it is better to have a slow changing religion with its authority intact, than a fast changing religion having lost its authority.

Re: Suicide and Hell - LDS Answer 2018

Posted: 03 Jul 2018, 08:42
by DarkJedi
Thanks for sharing. I agree that the article seems to address treating the symptom but it's a big step in the right direction. I liked Renlund's quote about there being someone in your ward contemplating suicide because I think that's a wakeup call for many. "In the quiet heart is hidden sorrow that the eye can't see." I actually wish the article had left out the Ballard stuff, I think it takes away from the positives.

My wife said in RS this week a sister who everyone knows has suffered with depression brought up that depression was Satan's doing. A mental health professional in our ward did not let that go by and immediately, and apparently quite forcibly, stated that was false and being depressed was no different than having diabetes, it's an illness. Several other sisters supported her in her assertion and apparently it was a good and productive discussion.

Re: Suicide and Hell - LDS Answer 2018

Posted: 03 Jul 2018, 15:08
by Stephies
I like it, a lot (everything at

As someone who's currently dealing with suicidal thoughts (and have racked up 6+ attempts in the past 2 years, most of which I survived from by sheer "luck"... or divine intervention... I don't know)... I can't help but think "meh". I've had "random church people" try to "help" me in the past with my mental health issues. I've mostly felt worse after their "pep talks". Because it's usually the same sh*** people outside of church say, with some "Gospel-sprinkles" on top.

Oh well. I'm grateful that people care, regardless of what they say in their "pep-talks". And I'm happy that the Church cares enough to do stuff like this. I guess there's not much more church/random church people can do. At least they're trying.

Re: Suicide and Hell - LDS Answer 2018

Posted: 03 Jul 2018, 16:09
by mom3
Stephies - This probably does very little - but I am sending a serious cyber hug to you. I will keep thinking extra good thoughts for you. That you may win the battle.

Thank you for honoring yourself and sharing your truth with us.

Re: Suicide and Hell - LDS Answer 2018

Posted: 03 Jul 2018, 20:56
by Minyan Man
My cousin committed suicide a little over a year ago. I pass no judgement on what he did. The only regret I have is
we didn't have the opportunity to talk before he did it. I have friends who had suicidal thoughts & the situation improved
when they got professional help. Stephies, please consider this option if you haven't already. If it doesn't help or improve
with the first contact you talk to, choose someone else. I'm convinced that talking to a sympathetic "ear" can start a great
healing process. There are support organizations that help too.

Re: Suicide and Hell - LDS Answer 2018

Posted: 04 Jul 2018, 22:05
by Curt Sunshine
I appreciated this deeply when I first saw it. It is a conversation we need to have, and I love the fact that we don't teach suicide sends someone to Hell.

I am going into counseling. Please, if anyone has suicidal thoughts, seek professional help. Please.

Re: Suicide and Hell - LDS Answer 2018

Posted: 05 Jul 2018, 14:40
by nibbler
I don't care what was said in the past, this is a good thing to have out there.

The idea that suicide condemns people to hell is certainly not unique to Mormonism. Not even close.

Background: outside DW and the kids I'm the only member of the LDS church in my family. My family comes from other faith traditions.

About a decade ago my uncle committed suicide. I was shocked that ecclesiastical leaders in my grandparents church were telling them that their son was going to hell as a result, no ifs, ands, or buts. What a way to comfort grieving parents in their late 80s, by telling them that their son is in hell. Obviously that approach wasn't very comforting to my grandparents so they reached out to me for comfort and questions about what would happen to their son from the LDS perspective.

At the time there were only a few articles to fall back on. I remember sharing selected statements from Suicide by M. Russell Ballard.

I think the faith my grandparents were raised in ultimately won the day. They had to cope with their son being in hell. I'm glad many people will be raised in and can fall back on Renlund's perspective.

I guess the notion that people that commit suicide go to hell came about as a type of deterrent or an emotive response to the suicide. I know it's tough for the survivors, there have been three suicides in my extended family. What brings healing, a promise of heaven or hell? I could say more but should probably stop.

Re: Suicide and Hell - LDS Answer 2018

Posted: 05 Jul 2018, 17:09
by SilentDawning
A much more compassionate article than what I have read in books like "The MIracle of Forgiveness".

Here is an article about the Miracle of Forgiveness. It addresses suicide, briefly, but its legacy is in its condemnation of sexual sin. It is now quietly being retired, and even SWK had his regrets about its tone.

This underscores for me how scripture, words of existing, installed prophets, and even "the gospel" can be considered a reflection of the time. That is why I find it so hard to believe everything I hear at church, or even over the pulpit in the tabernacle: ... type=CMSID

Here are the quotes from the miracle of forgiveness:
Regrettably, too, there are people who, when finally discovered in their defalcations, in
misappropriation of funds, in deep transgressions involving immorality and which affect families and
friends, and in other sins, begin to think of suicide. Sometimes the temptation toward suicide comes
when a person is bowed in grief at bereavement or feeling inadequate to meet and cope with the difficult
situations he encounters. To end it all! But this great crime does not end it. In his right mind, only a fool
would ever consider taking his own life.
Thoughts Govern Acts and Attitudes

The statement, "As a man thinketh, so is he," could equally well be rendered "As a man thinketh, so
does he." If one thinks it long enough he is likely to do it. A minister acquaintance of mine, whom I
knew rather well, was found by his wife hanging in the attic from the rafters. His thoughts had taken his
life. He had become morose and despondent for two or more years. Certainly he had not come to
suicide in a moment, for he had been a happy, pleasant person as I had known him. It must have been a
long decline, ever steeper, controllable by him at first and perhaps out of hand as he neared the end of
the trail. No one in his "right mind," and especially if he has an understanding of the gospel, will permit
himself to arrive at this "point of no return."
It is not sufficient that we do not kill or commit murder, but we should protect others from such crimes.
Not only is suicide a crime, but one is obligated to protect and save and prolong his own life. Not only
shall we not take life, but it is obligatory upon us to give life, both by bearing children into mortality and
by leading people toward eternal life by teaching, proselyting and influencing them strongly toward that
While he is not as condemnatory toward suicide as he was to other acts such as premarital sex, he doesn't do much to qualify and show compassion for people who commit suicide.

Based on my experiences in the last week, I am amazed at how a gospel of love can prompt such hardness toward others when they are perceived as having fallen off the path.

What out or faithful adherence to religion can turn you hard-hearted.