Subject: Baptism decline not a problem per Mormon Times article
Date: Jan 22, 2010
Author: Al

Are these folks delusional or what - declines mean that less folks are interested in your religion, but what do I know


Subject: Re: Baptism decline not a problem per Mormon Times article
Date: Jan 22 09:51
Author: Sophia

From the article:

As Elder M. Russell Ballard has said, "The Lord has never given us a mandate to be the big?gest church -- in fact, he has said our numbers will be comparatively few -- but he has asked that we commit ourselves to living and sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ."


What about the stone cut without hand rolling forth to fill the earth? What about man's inability to put forth his puny hand to stop the mighty Mississippi?

Methinks this guy doth protest too much.


Subject: Re: Baptism decline not a problem per Mormon Times article
Date: Jan 22 09:56
Author: Mormonkey

Elder Ballard said that the lord never promised we'd be the biggest church.

Where is the reference to that statement? No footnotes? Nice Journalism.


Subject: Pay No Attention to the Man Behind the Curtain!
Date: Jan 22 07:39
Author: AxelDC

It is astounding that they are acknowledging the decline. Growing up, all they did was crow about how fast the church grew and how that it would continue to grow faster and faster until it filled the whole Earth. No unhollowed hand and all that tripe.

This trend is now 13 years old. It coincides with the birth of the Internet, which makes it so easy to see that Mormonism is based on fraudulent claims. The author pretends like these tides of growth happen without reason. The increase in the 1970s and 1980s was due to SWK's "every young man a missionary", sending out lots more missionaries than ever. The decline in the late 1990s was due to the Internet.

The causes of the trend are perpetual. The Internet isn't going away. The number of young men available and willing to serve continues to decline. LDS family size is unlikely to grow larger.

Perhaps something could happen to change this trend. It would likely require a major change at the top, but that's unlikely with the gerontocracy.

Face it, Bro. Coppins, the church is going to continue to decline for a long time. This is no temporary oscillation like the business cycle. It's caused by the free flow of information to new converts who can counter missionary claims with ease. It's not going to reverse course any time soon.


Subject: Re: Baptism decline not a problem per Mormon Times article
Date: Jan 22 08:52
Author: 3X

Mr. Coppins writes:

"And yet anti-Mormons determined to disprove our faith and well-meaning members with false notions of the church's mission continue to misunderstand this. They tie the success of the LDS missionaries to the truthfulness of the LDS Church."

Dear Mr. Fatuous mormon: it is the faithful themselves who in a paroxysm of mental masturbation have _continuously_ linked "the truthfulness of the LDS church" with missionary success.

Virtually every mormon I have ever interacted with (IRL and the Net) has used church "growth" as the fall-back defense-of-faith position. This would include the two mormon missionaries who stopped by last summer.

Mental masturbation can only offer temporary relief for the subterranean insecurities that run rampant in mormon culture: deep, deep down, where the sun don't shine, lies a festering suspicion: that Smith, Jones, Koresh, and friends are birds of a feather. Their life's work? A complete sham. Their defenders? You do the math ...


Subject: An odd Internet Outcome: Non-Members know MORE about Mormonism, than Mormons!
Date: Jan 22 17:56
Author: Been There

The church teaches members to self-censor all the information that is available today. As a result, good members have "warm feelings", while outsiders have "cold facts". That's a horrible match.

The church has crippled itself in the Information Age.

In the past missionaries were in almost total control of church information. Back then before the missionaries came for the first lesson, investigators might have looked at the encyclopedia or talked to co-workers about Mormon issues, but that was it.

Today when the missionaries show up, investigators might have print-outs from the Journal of discourses (hardly an anti-Mormon source) or pages from the original "Mormon Doctrine", or maybe they are fully equipt after visiting sites that prepare investigators for their first Mormon contact.

Who has taught the Missionaries to deal with all of this? Sunday School? Seminary? The MTC?

All the missionaries are taught is to bear their testimonies and "Don't answer the question they ask, answer the question they should have asked."

That doesn't work anymore. Today facts outweigh Feelings.


Subject: OK, But if the church were so true and desirable, people would be flocking to it, no?
Date: Jan 22 09:03
Author: confused

It could be true and people would have their agency and choose not to join, just as he says, but if it was true and obviously true, then people should be drawn to it.

The lies of us so-called antimormons (aka consumer reports) would be discounted even by the disinterested.

Instead, the church is discounted by the disinterested, the third party observer and its own membership.

Why are baptisms down? Because the church has proven itself to be not unly untrue, but undesirable.


Subject: ---> Instead, the church is discounted by the disinterested
Date: Jan 22 09:54
Author: 3X

Americans may have taken some slight interest in mormonism during the Romney presidential campaign, but basically they, along with Western Europeans (at least) are simply indifferent: they are no more interested in mormonism than they are in that doggie "surprise" left on the pavement - they see it, recognize it for what it is, sense the unpleasant odor, and walk around it.

And that indifference is what fuels the frantic attempts by LDS, Inc to insinuate itself into every level of American culture, most obviously seen in the political sphere. These attempts reach the ludicrous extreme of retroactively branding the Founding Fathers as mormon, so that American democracy can be "correctly" viewed as having sprung from mormon principles. A notion that instantly provokes ridicule in the sensate.

But in the end, a doggie surprise is just that - something that ordinary people know to ignore and walk around, instinctively.


Subject: Yes, the stone...
Date: Jan 22 13:59
Author: Jesus Smith

They'd argue that it's s'posed to be fulfilled during the millenium.

1 NE 13-14 says the people of god would be all over the world, but small in number and the others would do battle against them.

In other words, they got both ways covered. It's pretty typical methodology of psychics and profits to double-speak. Remind you of the time they spoke of the one that came true, and try to forget the other.


Subject: Re: Baptism decline not a problem per Mormon Times article
Date: Jan 22 09:56
Author: Alice Down the Rabbit Hole

This comes off as typical abuser behavior. They will lie to you until the truth has been demonstrated so clearly and so undeniably that they will then shift gears and act like, well of course the truth is the truth! And rightly so! We always knew this to be the truth! Anybody who suggests otherwise is "anti" us. Pure garbage. I think this will be the pattern more and more as the church can't flat out deny things anymore. They will hold their heads up high and say "Of course our scripture has been changed dramatically over the years! Who are we to question God! It has been changed here and here and here! We are fully aware of that and have no issue with it! Hell, we keep changing the "restored" temple ceremony, too! You bet! They will pretend to play the "full disclosure" card and dare anybody to take issue with the inconsistencies and flat out lies.

Subject: Even without Baptisms ...
Date: Jan 22 10:03
Author: Puli
Mail Address:  

Isn't the fastest growing church still the Mormons?

Can anything reverse the (mis)perceptions church leaders try to purpetrate?


Subject: I believe the 7th Day'ers are growing faster..and a few others.

Subject: This is true, same with the JWs
Date: Jan 22 13:48
Author: Ed

The Adventists are baptizing roughly 1 million per year (which, if you recall, was Boyd K. Packers statistical wet dream from several years back). They boast 15 million members currently, which is more than the Morg claims. They also tend to retain much better than the LDS church does.

The JWs are also outbaptizing the Mormons by roughly 50,000 baptisms per year. They only count participating members in their stats (active = does active proselyting for the organization) and they claim roughly 6 million members. Best guess estimates for active LDS members is somewhere between 4-5 million members.


Subject: Ha! A likely story
Date: Jan 22 13:41
Author: paisley

Back in the 70s, when the church really was growing, members used the increasing numbers as proof that the church was true. Now we get the exact opposite. Oh, what changes 40 years can bring! One wants to shout, "Would you please make up your mind?" But TSCC can't do that.


Subject: Rolling forth to fill the whole Earth? I don't know that we teach that. n/t
Date: Jan 22 13:51
Author: Gordon B. Hinckley
Subject: I liked that: "The more truth, the less people" comment
Date: Jan 22 14:05
Author: Jesus Smith

>And let's remember: When Jesus was on the earth the number of his followers was pretty small when compared with the population of the entire world. In fact, the more truth he preached, the more the numbers dwindled.

Wow. Great plan god! Create the people so they hate the truth and the truth so it pisses off the people. My kind of god.

The Amish are growing at a faster rate than the Mormons. Atheists probably too.


Subject: What a great plan!
Date: Jan 22 20:46
Author: cludgie

Fortunately, people at large recognize the "truth" (so-called) for what is is--bullshit.


Subject: i was going to comment on the Jesus mention, too
Date: Jan 22 21:41
Author: lily

Typical controlling writing- no verse, no story to point to, just a "duh, everyone knows this" off hand comment that most Mormons wouldn't think about (but instead nod their heads b/c it would makes sense to them.) But, ya know, when I read the NT and it talks about Paul and Jesus and the meetings they had, I keep seeing this sentiment: "And the Lord added to their numbers daily." (or the like)

Maybe there are conflicting stories in the BoM that support this people leaving Jesus left and right nonsense, but I don't see it in the NT as a theme.


Subject: It isn't just the decline in numbers, it's the decline in the quality of the converts.
Date: Jan 22 14:08
Author: Southern Man

Which I think is even more dangerous to the church's future. The only people joining these days, with the exception of the few who do so at the demand of their boyfriend/girlfriend, are deadbeats and losers who wear out the active members with their needs. The missionaries are being directed to the poor and humble people (read: the denizens of housing projects and trailer parks). If these people do join, they quickly wear out their welcome, usually by constantly needing rides to church activities. The members, most of whom are conservative suburbanites, are leery of going into dangerous areas of town (and especially of sending their wives and children there) to pick up these new converts who don't have transportation.
They figure these new members will be inactive within a month or two anyway (and they're usually right), so they just bide their time until the newbies sink back into their previous existence. That's what I hear at church these days, anyway.


Subject: Re: It isn't just the decline in numbers, it's the decline in the quality of the converts.
Date: Jan 22 18:52
Author: Zeezrom

Yes this is what i witnessed during my two years experience.

The ward members were being 'used' for the most part and it didn't go unnoticed by some of the faithfull TBM's.

Asylum seekers from Africa and mentally struggling people were what the missionaries brought in most of the time.

In alot of cases Inactivity would rapidly creep in once the 'convert' got what they wanted.

In a way I felt sorry for what the ward members were going through as they were trying to be sincere and non judgemental.


Subject: It's called "Expectation Management".
Date: Jan 22 17:03
Author: My Take

It's the same reason that manufacturers put MSRP prices on products - it enables retail stores to (supposedly) mark down items so buyers will think they are getting a big deal.

In the past the expectation was that Mormonism would fill the entire world, like Daniels Dream! This encouraged a relatively small church to get ambitious. And it worked.

For a while. Remember that not too long ago GBH [previous mormon prophet] said baptisms would double in the next decade? Mission Presidents were going out of their minds trying to make that prophetic statement become true. However, false or weak baptisms were coming in by the tens of thousands and eventually had to be corrected by the personal intervention of Elders Oaks and Holland.

Now that the church is reaching its peak and percentages are getting harder and harder to maintain, it's time for the QUANTITY expectation to be re-managed toward the QUALITY expectation.

Mormons forget fast, so Church PR (through secondary sources that can afford to be discredited if necessary) is in the process of getting the membership "innoculated" to expect less growth and not to panick about the church being "true" because it hasn't grown that much.

April Conference may be a shocker otherwise - unless, that is, the church finally abandons its fake numbers. The Morg can't fudge those numbers upward forever, eventually they become unbelievable, even to credulous members.


Subject: Satan is really attacking the church - ergo any org with falling #s is true..nt


Subject: The part I never understood was why it was so important for me to be TBM,
Date: Jan 22 17:38
Author: Heresy
Mail Address:  

yet God didn't even want to expose most of His human children to it. So far He's running at under 1% of his children ever hearing the word Mormon.

Either the church is really important and everyone needs to be Mormon, or else it isn't important.

That bit of dissonance helped me get out.


Subject: What? The Ballard quote is inconsistent...
Date: Jan 22 17:38
Author: Steven

to the vision of the stone rolling forth from the mountain until it fills the whole earth. I'm pretty sure, many a' morbot leadership over the last 165 years has said that this the stone is actually the TCOJCOLDS. I've seen a pretty little movie of this depicting a map of the world with yellow dots popping up all over, signifying the proliferation of the gospel in the latter days. I heard James E. Faust proclaim in a Regional Conference before he died that we would see "1000" temples someday, as the church covered the earth.

I find Elder Ballard's suggestion otherwise to be pure heresy, short sighted, and a lack of faith. He should be excommunicated at once. His comments smack the face of the now 4 missions of the church. His comments smell of pure anti-mormon rhetoric. Seriously, where does he get off by saying,

"The Lord has never given us a mandate to be the biggest church -- in fact, he has said our numbers will be comparatively few -- but he has asked that we commit ourselves to living and sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ."


Subject: Hey, why are those guys playing violins, ain't the ship sinkin'? n/t

Subject: If they're openly admitting that convert baptisms are down, then next thing they'll ask of members..
Date: Jan 22 18:11
Author: Dogger Dog to breed, breed, and keep on breeding. Just watch. I'm not claiming any kind of special prescience or insider information here, but the most effective way they can grow is by indoctrinating little children. We may see a few talks on the evils of preventing child birth, maybe even a talk or two on how evil it is to "wait" on having kids, etc. I don't think they'll come out with something **OVERTLY** against birth control per se (because then people will google it and come across John C. Bennett references, and they don't want that). But I would say that there will be a (veiled) push at having more kids. Just watch.


Subject: Doctines of Salvation vol.2 is loaded with the evils of Birth Control...n/t




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