My Plan, or your plan?

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LookingHard
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Re: My Plan, or your plan?

Post by LookingHard » 19 Jul 2015, 05:45

I agree with Ray that it is well intentioned. For some it will work well, others it might not.

I also don't have any issues with sharing some parts with parents and others (possibly leaders). In the parts where they could use help and direction. I assume you SHOULD share with your parents what schooling you want to do and such. Bit I do really feel that they need to start standing on their own 2 feel and get out of a child-like relationship with parents and leaders.

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DarkJedi
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Re: My Plan, or your plan?

Post by DarkJedi » 19 Jul 2015, 10:58

You're right, of course, LH - different strokes for different folks. One of my reservations about the program is that they are going to be asking more than just sharing with a parent or leader. I'm thinking the sharing is more of a "return and report" or "accountability" model. That is, you're supposed to share with your parents or leader so they can follow up and keep you on track if you're not living up to their expectations (even though these are supposed to be your goals). For some parents and leaders that would lead to a more controlling/shaming/guilt driven aspect of the relationship. Again, that's going to work for some and not for others - and some are going to feel trapped by it.
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."

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Old-Timer
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Re: My Plan, or your plan?

Post by Old-Timer » 19 Jul 2015, 11:01

That is the danger, DJ - but the leaders and parents who prone to do that would be doing it regardless, while those who aren't, won't.
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Minyan Man
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Re: My Plan, or your plan?

Post by Minyan Man » 19 Jul 2015, 11:05

If I were a RM, I would resist at another program to manage my life after getting the oversight of a full time mission.
The quote the I remember most is:
Returned missionaries are spiritually strengthened when parents and stake and ward leaders nurture them and follow up on the goals and commitments they have made.
At what point am I responsible for my own spiritual development?
Can I blame my own inactivity on someone else not nurturing me?
I am glad that they want to help a RM stay active.
It shouldn't become another program.

NonTraditionalMom
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Re: My Plan, or your plan?

Post by NonTraditionalMom » 19 Jul 2015, 12:34

I definitely agree that some people will do really well with this and others will struggle, as with every program in the church.
DarkJedi wrote:YFor some parents and leaders that would lead to a more controlling/shaming/guilt driven aspect of the relationship. Again, that's going to work for some and not for others - and some are going to feel trapped by it.
Old-Timer wrote:That is the danger, DJ - but the leaders and parents who prone to do that would be doing it regardless, while those who aren't, won't.
I guess I am concerned that those who would be doing it regardless are now going to have a church-sanctioned program to back them up. Is this going to become yet another measure by which we judge each other?

This discussion has been very interesting, and I've thought of a few questions. I didn't serve a mission myself, so I'm curious, especially for those who mentioned struggling with re-entry, would a program like My Plan have helped? Or are there certain things, like language and cultural differences, that are just going to be difficult because that's what comes from separating yourself from your known world for two years? In other words, is not having a plan in place a major issue?

On that note, several of you mentioned the huge RM attrition rate. My question, then, is the lack of a plan the thing (or one of the major things) causing RM's to lose their faith or leave the church? Is introducing this kind of program going to help the RM's in the way they need help?

It will be very interesting to see how the church unfolds and uses the program. I would be much more inclined to feel positively about it if the missionary is given autonomy to explore choices and ideas (for example, I think career counseling and personality type activities would be fantastic) as well as with whom to share the plan. I think setting goals and being accountable for those goals is very important, but the person making the plan is the one who needs to have complete control over the timeline and accountability of those goals. In my experience, the church struggles a bit with the concept of autonomy.

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LookingHard
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Re: My Plan, or your plan?

Post by LookingHard » 19 Jul 2015, 13:53

NonTraditionalMom wrote:This discussion has been very interesting, and I've thought of a few questions. I didn't serve a mission myself, so I'm curious, especially for those who mentioned struggling with re-entry, would a program like My Plan have helped?

For me - no. It was that there where no other less people my age. All my friends were gone and I could only afford a local college.

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nibbler
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Re: My Plan, or your plan?

Post by nibbler » 20 Jul 2015, 05:12

NonTraditionalMom wrote:This discussion has been very interesting, and I've thought of a few questions. I didn't serve a mission myself, so I'm curious, especially for those who mentioned struggling with re-entry, would a program like My Plan have helped? Or are there certain things, like language and cultural differences, that are just going to be difficult because that's what comes from separating yourself from your known world for two years? In other words, is not having a plan in place a major issue?
Good question. I must have had an experience similar to On Own Now when coming home. "Reacclimating to my birth culture" certainly wouldn't have made my list, there's no way I could have anticipated that as a thing on the horizon. Even if I did write it down as a formal goal I don't think it would have made much a difference, the challenge was what it was.

Everyone has a plan 'till they get punched in the mouth. Having a plan is nice but most of us end up rolling with whatever challenges life presents at the time.
NonTraditionalMom wrote:On that note, several of you mentioned the huge RM attrition rate. My question, then, is the lack of a plan the thing (or one of the major things) causing RM's to lose their faith or leave the church? Is introducing this kind of program going to help the RM's in the way they need help?
Another good question. I could only speculate why the RM attrition rate is what it is and I think leaders are in a similar boat. It's hard to address a problem when we don't even know what that problem is. If the problem is a lack of direction My Plan might help. If the problem is "I can't wait to get out from under all this micromanagement..."
NonTraditionalMom wrote:It will be very interesting to see how the church unfolds and uses the program. I would be much more inclined to feel positively about it if the missionary is given autonomy to explore choices and ideas (for example, I think career counseling and personality type activities would be fantastic) as well as with whom to share the plan. I think setting goals and being accountable for those goals is very important, but the person making the plan is the one who needs to have complete control over the timeline and accountability of those goals. In my experience, the church struggles a bit with the concept of autonomy.
I think the missionary will have the ability to set their own goals and have full control over them. In the linked article it sounds like:
  1. The pre-mission activities are a requirement.
  2. While on the mission My Plan is automatically shared with the MP. Maybe this is just a rebranding of the current program where missionaries write letters to the mission president. I believe each mission is a little different in this regard, some missions may require missionaries to write letters to their MP while others do not. Maybe My Plan formalizes the process and sets an expectation churchwide.
  3. In the article the language switches for post mission. Missionaries are "invited to share" their plans with their parents, SP, and BP. It doesn't sound like it's a requirement.
It can't be a one size fits all thing. Sharing My Plan with my parents? They may have been pleased if mine had a goal of quitting the church within the year. :P
Cure sometimes, treat often, comfort always.
— Hippocrates

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LookingHard
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Re: My Plan, or your plan?

Post by LookingHard » 20 Jul 2015, 05:48

I do think many missionaries do feel like they have made a big sacrifice (and I would agree for most it is a substantial sacrifice) and often feel the blessings should start flowing once they are back from their mission. When life's inevitable challenges can't me they can feel a bit abandoned. I know I felt a bit like that. That doctrine of blessings coming from righteousness plays into it.

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SilentDawning
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Re: My Plan, or your plan?

Post by SilentDawning » 20 Jul 2015, 06:22

DarkJedi wrote:I think that was my point SD. The plan is the church's plan, not the individual's.


My point was that there isn't a lot left to dictate after the YM/YW returns from their mission. Most of the dictating has happened. And I think some RM's may benefit from the direction as you can feel kind of lost after you achieve the mission milestone. Where you and I agree is that whatever the plan is, it shouldn't be a church plan -- the lockstep marriage ASAP, kids ASAP etcetera.

In one meeting I was in, a leader commented that "if you can get the priesthood married in the temple with a child, the chances of him staying married and active throughout his life goes up dramatically". That, to me, seemed self-serving because it serves the interests of the church -- and some people may not have found the right person to marry right away. I also don't agree with BY's statement that "the single man is a menace to society". Often he's simply not found the right person yet. And the church, in areas with sparse Mormon presence, makes it hard to find suitable people because there isn't a lot to choose from either.

So, I disagree with the part about rushing RM's into marriage and children. But helping them get a plan in place so they can have a satisfying career may be helpful -- maybe. At this point , I have to ask myself -- how qualified is an LDS leader to give career advice to an RM? Probably not that great -- but a Priesthood leader could direct the RM to good career counseling resources that are often available in the community, through schools, and sometimes even the government.

So, my view is that priesthood leaders should avoid imposing the marriage/family template on the RM, and should limit their advice to areas in which they have expertise, or to directing RM's to resources that have the skills to help them....
"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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nibbler
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Re: My Plan, or your plan?

Post by nibbler » 20 Jul 2015, 06:49

Side note: People have struggled to attribute the comment about single men being a menace to society to BY. The idea does thrive in our culture though, it's something we really want BY to have said.

George Q. Cannon did say:
George Q. Cannon wrote:Our boys, when they arrive at years of maturity and can take earn of a wife, should get married, and there should not be a lot of young men growing up in our midst who ought to be, but are not married. While I do not make the remark to apply to individual cases, I am firmly of the opinion that a large number of unmarried men, over the age of twenty-four years, is a dangerous element in any community, and an element upon which society should look with a jealous eye. For every man knowing himself, knows how his fellow-man is constituted; and if men do not marry, they are too apt to do something worse. Then, brethren, encourage our young men to marry, and see that they are furnished employment, so that they can marry.
Journal of Discourses, Volume 20, Page 7
Cure sometimes, treat often, comfort always.
— Hippocrates

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