Bill Reel about to get excommunicated? >:-(

Public forum for topics that don't fit into the other categories.
Post Reply
User avatar
LookingHard
Posts: 2950
Joined: 20 Oct 2014, 12:11

Bill Reel about to get excommunicated? >:-(

Post by LookingHard » 26 Jul 2018, 19:54

On Redit
From Radio Free Mormon
Last evening, Bill Reel received a warning from his stake president who, in company with Bill's bishop, paid him a visit at his home.
The ultimatum was quite simple and not unexpected:
Either cease and desist your podcasts and posts critical of the LDS Church or get excommunicated.
Oh yes, he was allowed the option to resign, as well.
The interesting thing was that the stake president was quite open about the pressure he has been receiving from Salt Lake to move against Bill; that the stake president has waited for six-months in spite of this pressure, but that now his hand was forced.
The stake president will be reporting to his leaders today on his meeting with Bill.
:cry: :cry:
Bill's podcast really helped me not be so critical of the church's flaws. He even reached out me

User avatar
dande48
Posts: 1443
Joined: 24 Jan 2016, 16:35
Location: Wherever there is danger

Re: Bill Reel about to get excommunicated? >:-(

Post by dande48 » 26 Jul 2018, 20:21

I'm so sorry to hear this... The Church makes it exceptionally hard to "Stay LDS" as it is. I reminds me of how sad I was when John Dehlin got excommunicated. We're all here, on this site, with these resources, thanks to people like them. I wish the Church leadership knew how much those sorts of actions hurts members like us.
"The whole world is a comedy to those that think, a tragedy to those that feel." - Horace Walpole

"Even though there are no ways of knowing for sure, there are ways of knowing for pretty sure."
-Lemony Snicket

User avatar
Heber13
Site Admin
Posts: 7219
Joined: 22 Apr 2009, 16:37
Location: In the Middle

Re: Bill Reel about to get excommunicated? >:-(

Post by Heber13 » 27 Jul 2018, 05:24

I think Bill has helped a lot of people. He seems like a good guy.

I don't think his podcasts are aimed at helping the church, though there is an angle of trying to build bridges, although mostly one way.

It's not totally surprising.

It would be nice if they could talk about how to make his voice work for the good of the church, and if he is involved to also be careful not to tear down the church.

Who knows if they've tried that collaborative approach already or not.

I don't listen to his podcasts to know how often he crosses the line.
Luke: "Why didn't you tell me? You told me Vader betrayed and murdered my father."
Obi-Wan: "Your father... was seduced by the dark side of the Force. He ceased to be Anakin Skywalker and became Darth Vader. When that happened, the good man who was your father was destroyed. So what I told you was true... from a certain point of view."
Luke: "A certain point of view?"
Obi-Wan: "Luke, you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to...depend greatly on our point of view."

User avatar
Reflexzero
Posts: 165
Joined: 15 Aug 2012, 19:58

Re: Bill Reel about to get excommunicated? >:-(

Post by Reflexzero » 27 Jul 2018, 05:50

Seems to me Bill has been on a downward trend in regards to the Church since the November 2015 policy, and more recently has distanced himself even more after confronting some dishonesty from church leaders.

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

Re: Bill Reel about to get excommunicated? >:-(

Post by SilentDawning » 27 Jul 2018, 07:17

From Radio Free Mormon
Oh yes, he was allowed the option to resign, as well.
I am surprised by this -- there was policy once (I saw it in either a handbook, or a bulletin) that name removal was not to be used as an alternative to excommunication. So I am surprised they are allowing people to just resign and forgo a disciplinary council. In fact, inviting him to resign hastens his own faith crisis to the point he would probably carry on his podcasts like John Dehlin does. Ultimately, the church wants the perceived negative influence of the podcast to go away -- so inviting excommunication would only invite more public broadcasting of criticism toward the church.

It also sends the message 'we don't want you' without any concern for Bill or for the continuation of his podcast -- it only encourages such continuation.

Also disturbing is that this came from on-high. In the past, local leaders have denied that their efforts to deal with public nay-sayers toward the church came from SLC. But if the statement above that local leaders were in fact getting pressure from SLC, then it shows that perhaps those statements aren't always true, and that SLC does direct local leaders to take on people on the fringe. Or maybe it was just general direction "make sure you are scanning your local wards for naysayers and deal with them".

I think people like Bill Reel who go out to help people in faith crisis are often using a form of projection. In trying to help other people, they are trying to help themselves. Or perhaps giving a voice to their own faith crisis under the vehicle of trying to help other people in faith crisis. I thought that repeatedly about John Dehlin. I have no desire to do that unless someone approaches me, and then I'm cautious about it if they are local. I'll help them here though, no problem, but I'm not out to start my own site or podcast. Such things seem to hasten movement along the path to the door.

You gotta be anonymous and not be perceived as building a following to openly criticize the church and not face consequences.

Also, if you post on sites like StayLDS, you have to be careful that you aren't coupling it with some kind of LOCAL unorthodox behavior that screams apostate. Or your online posting will be used against you in that case. We've seen it happen to people here. I have never heard of someone being called out for posting unorthodox or contrarion, or even critical ideas as individuals on sites like StayLDS, however. The other thing his SP and BP objecting to is Bill's facilitation of local support groups. There is a list on his site -- almost like the Middle Way groups that tried to form in Cache Valley a few years ago when CWald was brought to task by his local leaders. It was this Middle Way movement into face to face groups that seemed to be part of the hoopla.

I am glad they gave Bill a warning rather than go straight to discipline. That is good practice. I generally like to see counseling first though -- simply talking about it. Then if the person doesn't comply, a warning, and then, if no compliance, something more heavy-handed. I haven't experienced Bill's stuff, but in the beginning it seemed pretty clean with published authors and speakers only profiled on his podcast.
"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

Curt Sunshine
Site Admin
Posts: 16852
Joined: 21 Oct 2008, 20:24

Re: Bill Reel about to get excommunicated? >:-(

Post by Curt Sunshine » 27 Jul 2018, 08:49

I love Bill, but he has been moving away from the Church and has been attacking it more and more over the last year.

I don't like this sort of thing, but it doesn't surprise me. I am sure the fact that he has become somewhat of a celebrity doesn't help. I am sure the Church doesn't want to risk another Dehlin / Snuffer / etc. movement.
I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken

User avatar
LookingHard
Posts: 2950
Joined: 20 Oct 2014, 12:11

Re: Bill Reel about to get excommunicated? >:-(

Post by LookingHard » 27 Jul 2018, 10:13

Reflexzero wrote:
27 Jul 2018, 05:50
Seems to me Bill has been on a downward trend in regards to the Church since the November 2015 policy, and more recently has distanced himself even more after confronting some dishonesty from church leaders.
I agree. I am a "premium" subscriber to his podcast (I throw a few bucks his way) and I get some podcasts earlier than the general public. There is one that I have listened to that is a sharp turn and is much more accusational towards one specific apostle. His tone (IMHO) is clearly more of, "I am done being nice." It is scheduled to be released on Aug 15 and has "Liar Liar Pants on Fire" in the title. I suspect that someone has become a premium subscriber and passed this on to COB/SMC and this may be the item that caused the reaction from the SP/church.
SilentDawning wrote:
27 Jul 2018, 07:17
From Radio Free Mormon
Oh yes, he was allowed the option to resign, as well.
I am surprised by this -- there was policy once (I saw it in either a handbook, or a bulletin) that name removal was not to be used as an alternative to excommunication. So I am surprised they are allowing people to just resign and forgo a disciplinary council.
My understanding is that this was a policy, but someone sued the church in the US and won with the courts saying you can't force someone to stay a member of a volunteer organization.

I agree with most all your other comments SD.

JAC
Posts: 33
Joined: 17 Dec 2014, 13:57

Re: Bill Reel about to get excommunicated? >:-(

Post by JAC » 27 Jul 2018, 10:29

I was a premium subscriber to Bill's podcast and interacted with him on a few occasions. I love the guy and have enjoyed hearing his perspective and have always appreciated his intellectual musings that were also filled with faith and hope. I admittedly stopped listening to him and following him on social media over a year ago when he became increasingly negative. He gradually became too overbearing for my tastes.

I pulled him up on Facebook this week when I heard the news of his meeting with his SP and B. I was intrigued by his allegations that the SCMC had pressured his leaders into pursuing formal discipline. I have often wondered if I'm on the SCMC's radar and if a dossier exists with my name on it. I'm insignificant, so if I am on their radar that would be greatly disturbing.

I had a friend who was told by a councilor in his stake presidency that his (my friend's) name had been submitted to the first presidency to become the next bishop, but was rejected. My friend was devastated to hear that. The only reason my friend could think of was he had been formally disciplined shortly after his mission for a transgression with his girlfriend. When I heard this, it infuriated me - If it was true, then our church doesn't really believe in repentance and being washed clean by the atonement. We were teaching that God remembers our sins no more, but all the while our church is keeping a file on us, using our past mistakes to judge us.

I wondered what file they had one me. Did they have notes from my mission president that I didn't work hard enough? Can they look at my file and see that I never trained or was a district leader? Can they see that I was on informal probation when I was a teenager? Can they see that I sometimes post on StayLDS and have an account on New Order Mormon? Can they see my temple attendance (easily tracked by the bar-codes on our recommends)? Do they look at my home teaching percentages (even though we don't track those anymore)? Do they see how much tithing I pay? How much I give for fast offerings? Can they see every calling I've ever had?

I still wonder. I would like to learn more about SCMC. Is it used to track and groom up and coming leaders and ensure that bad seeds never assume leadership? Or is it truly only to root out those publicly vocal critics like Bill Reel?

User avatar
Heber13
Site Admin
Posts: 7219
Joined: 22 Apr 2009, 16:37
Location: In the Middle

Re: Bill Reel about to get excommunicated? >:-(

Post by Heber13 » 27 Jul 2018, 12:20

SilentDawning wrote:
27 Jul 2018, 07:17

I think people like Bill Reel who go out to help people in faith crisis are often using a form of projection. In trying to help other people, they are trying to help themselves.
I agree, well said.

And that is fine for people to deal with it however works best for them.

But I don't expect the church to do nothing to protect itself either. So...that just goes along with it.

I used to think apostasy and excommunication was such an awful thing...(gasp!!!! Apostasy!!! :o )

But not so much anymore. I mean, if you're not happy with the church or rules...then...leave or fight against it and risk being invited out.

There are worse things in the world than to be told to leave the group you are talking bad about. Right?

You follow your path.
Luke: "Why didn't you tell me? You told me Vader betrayed and murdered my father."
Obi-Wan: "Your father... was seduced by the dark side of the Force. He ceased to be Anakin Skywalker and became Darth Vader. When that happened, the good man who was your father was destroyed. So what I told you was true... from a certain point of view."
Luke: "A certain point of view?"
Obi-Wan: "Luke, you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to...depend greatly on our point of view."

User avatar
mom3
Posts: 4077
Joined: 02 Apr 2011, 14:11

Re: Bill Reel about to get excommunicated? >:-(

Post by mom3 » 27 Jul 2018, 12:38

I still wonder. I would like to learn more about SCMC. Is it used to track and groom up and coming leaders and ensure that bad seeds never assume leadership? Or is it truly only to root out those publicly vocal critics like Bill Reel?
I am less worried about it. I can go down a list of stayers, off beat, etc. who are far more vocal than we are who have been Bishop's, Stake leaders, High Councilors. Think of Richard Bushman, Terryl Givens, Bob Reese, Gregory Prince, Jana Reiss, Robert Kirby - They are larger on the radar screen. No one is knocking on their door. I just don't believe the SCMC has that much stretch.

Bill put himself in that position. Whether he wants to admit it or not. Every other infamous excommunication has happened the same way. Bill has changed. He is angry, tyrannical, reactionary. Maybe it's not SLC who is complaining as much as members complaining. I remember one time someone stating that every where John Dehlin went he would talk about his issues. Including family reunions or hang out nights. There became no off button.

With each major ex process, the individuals have had multiple opportunities to tone down their volume. I remember Bill raving about how he had so much support from his local leaders. Especially when he moved to Utah. He was the golden child of faith transitions. Ironically, John Dehlin had similar statements a few years ahead of Bill. He was happy to name drop a GA or two that he'd conversed with.

I believe the ego loves the intrigue. The minute the intrigue gets boring or less adulatory, the craving gets worse. When the craving increases, the rhetoric and tone changes. Anything to keep the froth of intrigue going. A person feels invincible. "I am the master of my fate. Captain of my soul." From there the only way is down. It's no longer about a religion you loved or cared for, it's about you. It's about being the hero. It's about being angry at the dragon that bit you. Even though you tickled it. Somehow you were supposed to win.

Plenty of people have been on the outs with the church. Some stay and take it. Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, Juanita Brooks. Other's just walk away quietly. If Bill is so ticked at the church, since the November policy, stop attending. Resign. Or take a long break. Focus on your family business. Shut down the podcasts. Quit publicly posting on Reddit - Exmo. Move on.

But don't cry foul when you have had so much leverage. Just like Colin Kaepernick taking a knee. You made a play. It may not work out. Own it or get off. (Didn't go so well for Kaepernick, once the golden QB for the San Francisco 49ers. Why should it be any different for Bill?)
"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

Post Reply