Introduction

Public forum, tell us about yourself and what brings you to StayLDS!
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DarkJedi
Posts: 7317
Joined: 24 Aug 2013, 20:53

Re: Introduction

Post by DarkJedi » 25 Jun 2014, 05:10

SunbeltRed wrote:1) Any quick advice or best practices for the middle way with small children? We have three kids (6,2,1). I prefer to raise them in the church, I want to give them the best perspective I can, I want to represent church history accurately and softly help them to be their own spiritual guides, but I want to respect their agency and let them come to their own conclusions.

2) And, I do have a stake calling. Not in the Stake Presidency, but I work with them a lot. I think my calling is what caused me to reexamine much of this, wondering if I can represent the SP but also be authentic. I feel like I have been able to reconcile having the calling I have with my new faith paradigm. I am temple worthy, I don't plan on vocalizing any of the things I share here (although I have been revising messages and talks to sound more literal Mormon, but subtly changed to reflect my views). This may sound strange, but I feel like my calling may give me the opportunity to find and work with those with questions like myself and be able to connect and help them in a way that most active members would not understand or comprehend. I have already been able to help a good friend who shares many of my concerns.

Would love to get your thoughts.

-Sunbelt Red
1) Your kids are young - only one is actually in regular Primary lessons and that one is getting pretty basic stuff, although there could be stuff you disagree with. You (and your spouse) are primarily responsible for teaching your children the gospel, Primary is supposed to be there to help you. My kids were older when my FC started and do not know the depth of my questions and doubts, but I do talk to them about things like evolution and literalism of scripture stories as the occasions arise (my issues are mostly not historical). With a younger child there's probably going to need to be a discussion about blurting out things like "My daddy says Adam and Eve aren't real people" in class. I do believe that LDS.org is a good place to begin as the children get older - the essays are great and hopefully there will be many more by the time they are old enough to understand them.

2) I also have a stake calling (I'm sending you a PM). I think you're on the right track - I also don't vocalize my beliefs, I stick to standard teachings - although I do choose what to teach and not to teach and simply leave out that with which I don't agree. Innuendo is great in this case. I frequently quote Pres. Uchtdorf, sometimes without actually saying so (like using "It is not that simple") and look to see who seems to get it. I too, think you can be of help to others, and you should try to find the ones and do so - but be careful. In the cases I have been involved in (and I don't want to reveal too much here) I do not share my own doubts/questions and I don't ask the other people to - I mostly assure them it's OK to have questions and doubts and that they have to find their own answers. I do share with them that I did not attend church for an extended period of time because of my doubts but I also tell them that's not the answer - I mostly do that so they understand I have been where they are.

Good luck, keep coming back - I really do look forward to hearing more from you. We need people like you here and in your calling.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

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."

My Introduction

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SilentDawning
Posts: 7348
Joined: 09 May 2010, 19:55

Re: Introduction

Post by SilentDawning » 25 Jun 2014, 07:02

1) Any quick advice or best practices for the middle way with small children? We have three kids (6,2,1). I prefer to raise them in the church, I want to give them the best perspective I can, I want to represent church history accurately and softly help them to be their own spiritual guides, but I want to respect their agency and let them come to their own conclusions.
Right now, it will be easy because they won't question much. Keep your contrarion conversation with your wife privately so they can't hear it. I let the church teach the history and let the kids build testimony as they see fit. I encourage belief and testimony in God at home, and teach relationship principles to them.

There will come a time when some of them come to you with questions. Deep questions that don't get answered at church. I have found they tend to be capable of more complex thought when they start asking these questions. It's then, that you can address the historical problems etcetera.

So, my approach is passive. I let the church do the teaching, and focus on those things that are not controversial at home. But when those private teaching opportunities come, and it feels right, share what really happened in our history, and try to give reasons for why the church whitewashed it. Along with that comes training in whether my daughter should be a stay at home whose primary mission is to further the growth of the church,or if she should have a career, or both. It's all done through coaching and letting her walk away to make up her own mind. And these teaching moments happen spontaneously; I don't systemize them.
2) And, I do have a stake calling. Not in the Stake Presidency, but I work with them a lot. I think my calling is what caused me to reexamine much of this, wondering if I can represent the SP but also be authentic. I feel like I have been able to reconcile having the calling I have with my new faith paradigm. I am temple worthy, I don't plan on vocalizing any of the things I share here (although I have been revising messages and talks to sound more literal Mormon, but subtly changed to reflect my views). This may sound strange, but I feel like my calling may give me the opportunity to find and work with those with questions like myself and be able to connect and help them in a way that most active members would not understand or comprehend. I have already been able to help a good friend who shares many of my concerns.
[/quote][/quote]

Good strategy. Rock the boat without sinking the ship. Make people think, but don't go so far outside the norm that you shut everyone down, or get released. I've sent these messages in meetings and got through unscathed.

a) Church leaders aren't perfect, and they give only general advice.

b) You have to run their advice through your own judgment and circumstances. And what comes out of that process may be much different than what the leaders say.

c) Judgmentalism is alive and well in the church. I have spoken out against it regularly. You have "Be a light not a judge" on your side and it sells well.

d) Stay away from controversial topics.

e) Lean heavily on the unusual talks that GA's have given -- Concern for the One, Uchdorfts talks, Good Better Best (Ballard), and Hollands talk on depression and the need to slow down.

f) I have also shared that I think moving as a type of service is not always appropriate. I even put together a policy on moving for my Ward, that got passed down to future HPGL's. Essentially that our role is limited to making an announcement, that people moving had to find their own volunteers, get their own truck, and find their own packers. The only exception was if someone was moving into the Ward or there was someone with a special need. In which case we would give a "full service" move. You can quote BKP's comment in WW training that the church is not a moving service.

g) I wouldn't hesitate to quote from the Blacks and Priesthood disavowal now that it's on the website. Maybe a passing comment that the church disavows all racism, past and present. Always staying on the right side of the line.

This is the only way to maintain influence in the church, and encourage gradual change, in my view. Extremists get released, ostracized, and sometimes excommunicated.
"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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cwald
Posts: 3628
Joined: 10 Aug 2015, 06:39

Re: Introduction

Post by cwald » 26 Jun 2014, 07:20

SD - well said.

Sent from my SCH-I545 using Tapatalk
  Jesus gave us the gospel, but Satan invented church. It takes serious evil to formalize faith into something tedious and then pile guilt on anyone who doesn't participate enthusiastically. - Robert Kirby

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SunbeltRed
Posts: 349
Joined: 20 Jun 2014, 11:07

Re: Introduction

Post by SunbeltRed » 26 Jun 2014, 09:22

Thanks DarkJedi and SD. Appreciate the advice!!

Agaetis
Posts: 21
Joined: 26 Jun 2014, 12:08

Re: Introduction

Post by Agaetis » 02 Jul 2014, 10:06

DarkJedi wrote:
SunbeltRed wrote:1) Any quick advice or best practices for the middle way with small children? We have three kids (6,2,1). I prefer to raise them in the church, I want to give them the best perspective I can, I want to represent church history accurately and softly help them to be their own spiritual guides, but I want to respect their agency and let them come to their own conclusions.

2) And, I do have a stake calling. Not in the Stake Presidency, but I work with them a lot. I think my calling is what caused me to reexamine much of this, wondering if I can represent the SP but also be authentic. I feel like I have been able to reconcile having the calling I have with my new faith paradigm. I am temple worthy, I don't plan on vocalizing any of the things I share here (although I have been revising messages and talks to sound more literal Mormon, but subtly changed to reflect my views). This may sound strange, but I feel like my calling may give me the opportunity to find and work with those with questions like myself and be able to connect and help them in a way that most active members would not understand or comprehend. I have already been able to help a good friend who shares many of my concerns.

Would love to get your thoughts.

-Sunbelt Red
1) Your kids are young - only one is actually in regular Primary lessons and that one is getting pretty basic stuff, although there could be stuff you disagree with. You (and your spouse) are primarily responsible for teaching your children the gospel, Primary is supposed to be there to help you. My kids were older when my FC started and do not know the depth of my questions and doubts, but I do talk to them about things like evolution and literalism of scripture stories as the occasions arise (my issues are mostly not historical). With a younger child there's probably going to need to be a discussion about blurting out things like "My daddy says Adam and Eve aren't real people" in class. I do believe that LDS.org is a good place to begin as the children get older - the essays are great and hopefully there will be many more by the time they are old enough to understand them.

2) I also have a stake calling (I'm sending you a PM). I think you're on the right track - I also don't vocalize my beliefs, I stick to standard teachings - although I do choose what to teach and not to teach and simply leave out that with which I don't agree. Innuendo is great in this case. I frequently quote Pres. Uchtdorf, sometimes without actually saying so (like using "It is not that simple") and look to see who seems to get it. I too, think you can be of help to others, and you should try to find the ones and do so - but be careful. In the cases I have been involved in (and I don't want to reveal too much here) I do not share my own doubts/questions and I don't ask the other people to - I mostly assure them it's OK to have questions and doubts and that they have to find their own answers. I do share with them that I did not attend church for an extended period of time because of my doubts but I also tell them that's not the answer - I mostly do that so they understand I have been where they are.

Good luck, keep coming back - I really do look forward to hearing more from you. We need people like you here and in your calling.
These are also question I'll eventually need answers for as well. Thanks!
I do share with them that I did not attend church for an extended period of time because of my doubts but I also tell them that's not the answer - I mostly do that so they understand I have been where they are.
I read your introduction and don't want to pry too much but do you feel your period of inactivity was beneficial to you? I had my inactive period, it wasn't due to a FC and I didn't have a family to consider. But do you think there might be some benefit to taking a break?

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DarkJedi
Posts: 7317
Joined: 24 Aug 2013, 20:53

Re: Introduction

Post by DarkJedi » 02 Jul 2014, 10:18

Yes, I do think that for some people taking a break is needed. Taking a 10 year break is probably too much. Taking a break can also include decreased activity - attending only SM or attending a couple times a month instead of every week. And it can also include fewer requirements - smaller home teaching route (or sometimes none), less demanding calling, etc.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

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."

My Introduction

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