11-Year-Old Deacons and Beehives

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DarkJedi
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Re: 11-Year-Old Deacons and Beehives

Post by DarkJedi » 16 Dec 2018, 17:03

That's going to be really hard to measure DA since 18-30s (actually about 14-30+) are already leaving in droves and we're probably already looking at a downtick of activity rates by a percentage point or two. And most of that we have to figure out ourselves, the church doesn't ever say how many are not active. In truth I think 2 hour church and other simplifications (basically asking less of us) are an effort to try to stem that tide.
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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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Heber13
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Re: 11-year old Deacons and Beehives

Post by Heber13 » 16 Dec 2018, 20:23

dande48 wrote:
14 Dec 2018, 11:43
That's super interesting. Growing up, I always thought that the age for getting the priesthood, and advancing in the offices, was tied to unchanging, doctrinal revelation. Turns out, it is just policy that can be changed whenever "those in charge" see fit. This change does make quite a lot more sense.

On a semi-related note, I wonder what it would take to change the D&C revelation that kids be baptized at age 8. If I were in charge, I'd bump up the age of accountability to 16.
I think we are seeing more and more that very little is so set in stone as if it was restored from the beginning with clear rules and clear cut organization. I liked that feeling from Rough Stone Rolling book...church was figuring things out as they went along.

Very little, in my opinion, is set and cannot be changed. Women and the priesthood, ages of things like baptism or missionaries, quorums and class names and offices like patriarchs or evangelists...so many things in our tradition that became so ingrained in our church experience we think it was always like that since the days of Adam.

But very little is. They are still figuring it out as they go.
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."

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Re: 11-Year-Old Deacons and Beehives

Post by Curt Sunshine » 16 Dec 2018, 23:31

Satisfied people want change they can understand and that doesn't shock or anger them. When that sort of change happens, satisfied people are happy. Happy people stay where they are.

It really is as simple as that. President Nelson is giving satisfied members what they want: non-threatening change at a pace that excites and energizes them.

These sort of changes (non-shocking and non-anger-producing for satisfied people) aren't going to make satisfied people leave the Church. Those who leave the Church will be already dissatisfied people who don't see them as revelatory and are disappointed they aren't "bigger and better" - and those people were the most likely to leave in the first place.

I can't think of a single change instituted since Nelson became President that is shocking or angering enough for typical, active, believing members to cause any of them to leave. Instead, they perceive an exciting forward movement due to steady change.

Me? I don't disapprove of any change enough for it to cause me to question my decision to stay. Not one. The exclusion policy was something I had to consider seriously, but it was prior to President Nelson taking over. Generally speaking, I think the recent changes have been positive or neutral - so I can't see how any traditional, orthodox members are going to leave the Church over them.
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Re: 11-Year-Old Deacons and Beehives

Post by nibbler » 17 Dec 2018, 04:03

I wouldn't hold my breath for a change that raises the baptism age. Too much working against it:

1) There is actual doctrine. D&C 68:27 - "And their children shall be baptized for the remission of their sins when eight years old, and receive the laying on of the hands."

When changes are made I think leaders return to canon to make sure the change squares with a very literal interpretation of what is written. I think this was the rationale for Nelson to focus on the name of the church, "For thus shall my church be called in the last days, even The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints." (D&C 115:4)

The ages of each office in the AP aren't canonized, there's wiggle room, but I think it would take something serious, new section in the D&C serious, to change the baptism age.

2) What's the incentive? What would drive that change?

My gut says that leaders are already concerned with activity rates and the solution thus far feels like getting people to check every box along the "covenant path" at regular, predefined intervals. We know if people are where they "should" be by which boxes have and haven't been checked for their age.

On top of that, can you imagine what would happen if the baptism age were raised to 18? If some statistics are to be believed, something like 50% of the youth go inactive within a year of leaving the home. Transpose that stat over to the yearly children of record baptism stat. It would fall from roughly 100K to 50K per year. And leaders would choose this?

If you're running your church like a business, it's easier to retain customers than to get new ones. It's probably easier to retain people who are already members because they got baptized at 8 than it would be to convince 18 year olds that have experienced a lifetime of our meetings to get baptized. ;) :angel:
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Re: 11-Year-Old Deacons and Beehives

Post by nibbler » 17 Dec 2018, 04:15

Switching gears, so new post.

I can't think of a single member that is disappointed with any of the recent changes. Well... I think there are people that are disappointed with ministering. They really liked having people being beholden to visiting them under the old program. :P

Maybe it's more the case that people don't feel comfortable vocalizing dissent, but there was rejoicing in the streets when 2 hour church was announced, which to me is telling. We've got a bigger problem than "church is too long" when even the most loyal and devoted members are celebrating less of it.

But so far all the changes have felt like they are making church less burdensome, which is welcome. Less quorums, less callings to staff. Kids file off to YM/YW earlier, two less callings to staff in Primary. 2 hour church. Ministering. It feels like leaders want to make church less burdensome for people. Now... I think it's hard for some to capture the spirit of that. I'm still getting a strong more is more, less is less vibe in my area. I think it's harder for us to compare ourselves to one another when there's less expectation so we create expectations for ourselves and others.
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dande48
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Re: 11-Year-Old Deacons and Beehives

Post by dande48 » 17 Dec 2018, 06:06

nibbler wrote:
17 Dec 2018, 04:03
On top of that, can you imagine what would happen if the baptism age were raised to 18? If some statistics are to be believed, something like 50% of the youth go inactive within a year of leaving the home. Transpose that stat over to the yearly children of record baptism stat. It would fall from roughly 100K to 50K per year. And leaders would choose this?
I think that's the #1 reason why the Church should change the baptismal age to 16 or 18. Because those kids going inactive after leaving home probably wouldn't have decided to be baptised without parental pressure. But would the Church leaders change this? Of course not. We're very proud of our membership stat; the continual growth is a testament to the divinity of the Church... (even though most people go inactive, and conversion rates are way down despite having more missionaries than ever before).
nibbler wrote:
17 Dec 2018, 04:03
If you're running your church like a business, it's easier to retain customers than to get new ones. It's probably easier to retain people who are already members because they got baptized at 8 than it would be to convince 18 year olds that have experienced a lifetime of our meetings to get baptized. ;) :angel:
Very true! And also part of why I'm partially against the official baby blessings. Not that they are bad in themselves... but it makes the kid a "record member" ("child of record"), whether or not they get baptized, for life. It's stupidly exploitative, IMHO, because it looks so innocent on the outside. Who could resist your active grand-dad begging you to give your baby a blessing in the Mormon Church?
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Re: 11-Year-Old Deacons and Beehives

Post by SamBee » 17 Dec 2018, 10:14

If the children are over a certain age they tend to be removed.
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Re: 11-Year-Old Deacons and Beehives

Post by Roy » 17 Dec 2018, 11:20

Curt Sunshine wrote:
16 Dec 2018, 23:31
I can't think of a single change instituted since Nelson became President that is shocking or angering enough for typical, active, believing members to cause any of them to leave. Instead, they perceive an exciting forward movement due to steady change.
I mostly agree with this. For example, I think it is interesting that people are happy with the discontinuation of scouts for different reasons. Some old stalwarts feel that scouts is betraying their identity by allowing gay leaders, gay members, girls, etc. Others just get frustrated with jumping through scout program hoops and the high cost of continued participation. For different reasons almost everybody seems to be in favor of the change.

Ministering and 2 hour church are similar. If you love church these are marketed as part of a higher law in preparation for the winding up scene. If you do not love church then the church demands on your time have been reduced. This is a win-win.
nibbler wrote:
17 Dec 2018, 04:15
Kids file off to YM/YW earlier
Another benefit! My family had participated in other Christian church activities in part because the ward offered pretty much nothing for girls below 12 and boys below cub scout age. My impression is that the youth get more investment. Getting that investment earlier is a good thing.
nibbler wrote:
17 Dec 2018, 04:15
Maybe it's more the case that people don't feel comfortable vocalizing dissent, but there was rejoicing in the streets when 2 hour church was announced, which to me is telling. We've got a bigger problem than "church is too long" when even the most loyal and devoted members are celebrating less of it.
Our church has a model of 1) Extraordinary truth claims and 2) a call to duty and sacrifice on the strength of our testimony to those claims. This is similar to the JW's. People do not join the JW's because they have fun meetings. Even if you believe the sacrifice is good for you, most people rejoice upon hearing that the sacrifice is no longer required.
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Re: 11-Year-Old Deacons and Beehives

Post by IT_Veteran » 17 Dec 2018, 16:13

I think my mom is a pretty good barometer of how believing, orthodox members receive these types of things.

So far, she seems to really appreciate the changes coming out. Excited Facebook posts and comments to my wife about all the wonderful changes being made and how exciting it all is.

No signs of cognitive dissonance from her.

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Heber13
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Re: 11-Year-Old Deacons and Beehives

Post by Heber13 » 17 Dec 2018, 16:24

dande48 wrote:
17 Dec 2018, 06:06
On top of that, can you imagine what would happen if the baptism age were raised to 18? If some statistics are to be believed, something like 50% of the youth go inactive within a year of leaving the home. Transpose that stat over to the yearly children of record baptism stat. It would fall from roughly 100K to 50K per year. And leaders would choose this?
I think that's the #1 reason why the Church should change the baptismal age to 16 or 18. Because those kids going inactive after leaving home probably wouldn't have decided to be baptised without parental pressure.
I think it would be kind of smart to keep baptism at age 8, but not do the confirmation until they are 11 or 12 (or even 14).

Confirmations could be exactly that...confirming they want to live the mormon lifestyle to be a member of the church after they've learned about it some and show they want to be ready to do seminary and YM/YW and stuff. (of course...just one other way to swing it...it likely doesn't change things one way or another...20 ways to skin a cat, right?)

Maybe it is kind of a chicken and egg thing. Do you baptism and teach them young so they know the blessings of being in that lifestyle by living it... only to see some will choose to reject it and leave feeling they were pressured into it, or do you let them figure out what they want and then they can choose later in life to join... only to see many not know what they are missing and wished someone told them sooner?
- Try it you'll grow to like it;
or
- If you like it, then you will try it?

(and also...where did "20 ways to skin a cat" come from? That's really an awful expression)
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."

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