Interviews

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Roy
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Joined: 07 Oct 2010, 14:16
Location: Pacific Northwest

Interviews

Post by Roy »

I commented to my wife that I will have been interviewed by the LDS church 3 times in as many months. I was released from a calling and that came with a mini-interview. I had my ministering brother interview that came with a "challenge." Finally there is tithing declaration that is happening now.

DW went to church (after not going for an extended period) and was told that a bishopric counselor wanted to meet with her. This turned into an interview and the extension of a calling.

We just got an email about an upcoming FSY opportunity for the kids. It looks like it might be fun. The kids need an interview before they can go. We plan on asking if this can be replaced by the annual worthiness interview or if they need a separate FSY interview.

I feel that there are entirely too many interviews. In addition, as we have become less active in the church I feel like to tone of the interviews have changed. Before, the interviews could just be a perfunctory checking-in. Now that I am not doing what my church leaders want me to be doing every interview comes with a level of guilt and shame. They are draining experiences where I need to parse my responses, speak in hopeful mormonese, and refrain from taking offense.

I further feel that none of these interviews have as their purpose to get to know me or to discover how the church might best serve me and my family.

P.S. I don't have a TR and haven't done a TR interview in a decade. That would be another interview....
"It is not so much the pain and suffering of life which crushes the individual as it is its meaninglessness and hopelessness." C. A. Elwood

“It is not the function of religion to answer all the questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give one courage, through faith, to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status.” TPC: Harold B. Lee 223

"I struggle now with establishing my faith that God may always be there, but may not always need to intervene" Heber13
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DarkJedi
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Joined: 24 Aug 2013, 20:53

Re: Interviews

Post by DarkJedi »

I agree Roy, and I think it's even more true for the youth. I also agree than the tenor of those interviews can change in relation to our individual activity level (or perceived activity level). Since I haven't had a calling in some time, don't have a TR, and have long refused tithing settlement (nor tithing declaration), I have not been interviewed in some time - but I have been surprised that I haven't been "invited" to any interviews.

I do think there is an element of control in the church and the interviews are are way of asserting that control. I'm not sure if they have any other purpose.
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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AmyJ
Posts: 1140
Joined: 27 Jul 2017, 05:50

Re: Interviews

Post by AmyJ »

DarkJedi wrote: 19 Nov 2022, 06:13 I agree Roy, and I think it's even more true for the youth. I also agree than the tenor of those interviews can change in relation to our individual activity level (or perceived activity level). Since I haven't had a calling in some time, don't have a TR, and have long refused tithing settlement (nor tithing declaration), I have not been interviewed in some time - but I have been surprised that I haven't been "invited" to any interviews.

I do think there is an element of control in the church and the interviews are are way of asserting that control. I'm not sure if they have any other purpose.
I always figured that it was an inefficient way for the leadership to get to know someone better for some random reason.
<shrugs>

My husband rebels against being controlled by anyone, and I'm the only one who can tell myself what to do.

*If* it ever came up that leadership needed to *interview* my children - I would insist that they come over to our house and have it more informal, family-style because my family is not comfortable sitting at church in the chairs and with the fragrances. If it's a control thing - well, then...


NOTE: In 2021, the branch president spent a week stalking me via phone to "set up a meeting". I texted him and let him know that I wasn't interested in a meeting without knowing the topic, and that I wasn't interested in meeting at all in person - but that we could do a phone call or a Zoom meeting. He was perturbed about it, but eventually we had a phone call where he tried to extend Primary calling. I explained that I was not interested in the formal call, but that whenever I showed up at church, I wound up being the 2nd leader in classes (and I was fine with that). I am sure that it was frustrating for him that I don't "follow the rules" - as it is frustrating for me that I wound up with a massive perspective change.
Roy
Posts: 6883
Joined: 07 Oct 2010, 14:16
Location: Pacific Northwest

Re: Interviews

Post by Roy »

I had two more interviews yesterday. I was asked to do another ministering interview (do they do those quarterly?) and the tithing declaration. For the ministering interview, the guy wanted to meet with me and my 15 year old son/companion. My son had already walked home about halfway through SM. I met with him and he asked me to tell my son that we had met and that I reported on my son's behalf.

Tithing declaration was as you might expect.

So many interviews...
"It is not so much the pain and suffering of life which crushes the individual as it is its meaninglessness and hopelessness." C. A. Elwood

“It is not the function of religion to answer all the questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give one courage, through faith, to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status.” TPC: Harold B. Lee 223

"I struggle now with establishing my faith that God may always be there, but may not always need to intervene" Heber13
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PazamaManX
Posts: 130
Joined: 24 Nov 2018, 03:21

Re: Interviews

Post by PazamaManX »

I have an interview coming up for yet another ecclesiastical endorsement so I can continue to take my BYU-I classes online for another year. Just as I did last year, I'll tell the bishop that my wife and I are full tithe payers so I can at least cut one meeting out of my schedule.

I've never gone to a ministering interview. I reject the idea of them. If we switched to ministering to get away from the checklist mentality, reporting about it (however infrequently) doesn't do a great job of that.
"Fix reason firmly in her seat, and call to her tribunal every fact, every opinion. Question with boldness, even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blindfolded fear." ~ Thomas Jefferson
AmyJ
Posts: 1140
Joined: 27 Jul 2017, 05:50

Re: Interviews

Post by AmyJ »

I forgot that another thing I did was "visit teach" and "visit minister" and "visit report" by email. I gave the people who wanted that communication the impression that I was "too busy" to do the in-person interview - which wasn't entirely inaccurate. I worked full time, was doing my degree online, and have a child with additional needs and a husband who has chronic health problems and was involved with teaching R.S. and running Achievement Days. I could have made the time, but I didn't want to. The reality was that I just didn't want to deal with corralling my daughters single-handedly before or after church for another meeting. I also write things out by email so that I don't forget anything as a anxiety-relieving tactic.

My social standing was so weird at that point anyways and I have always been a poor fit for the "indirect", "quiet" and "long-suffering" and "unopinionated" R.S. sister mold. It also helped that we were in a small branch that needed me (and my family) more than I needed them.
Old-Timer
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Joined: 21 Oct 2008, 20:24

Re: Interviews

Post by Old-Timer »

I asked my bishop if we could just make a declaration to him about not needing a tithing declaration interview. He grinned and said yes.

I was asked on the phone while on vacation this past week about a new calling. I did it over the phone. It helped that they wanted to announce all the changes in Ward Conference last Sunday, but the conversation still happened over the phone.

I minimize interviews simply because I believe in minimizing meetings, generally, to those that require a formal meeting. I don't believe in meetings of any kind just for the sake of having a meeting when the content can be done without a meeting.
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
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