Recovery Board  : RfM
Recovery from Mormonism (RfM) discussion forum. 
Go to Topic: PreviousNext
Go to: Forum ListMessage ListNew TopicSearchLog In
Posted by: SEcular Priest ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 07:03PM

Priesthood Lesson was an introduction to how the first Sunday of every month is going to be a council meeting in which everyone is to participate. We are to sit in a circle and bring to the meeting "revelation" that we received that week to the meeting on a given topic. We are to share that "revelation and personal inspiration" with all members present.It is to be a group process to come up with ideas how to help members, and the ward and families become stronger, fight porno (yes, this was in the directions by the Church), help kids be better in avoiding temptation, etc.

So I am sitting there. I have a PhD in group counseling and listening to this presentation and thinking:
1) This violates members personal boundaries
2) You could not participate but the guidelines is everyone is to participate. You know group pressure
3) Assignments will given and you will have to report back (big brother concept
4) What if my revelation is different about the subject than the leader's revelation? Are they going to tell me I am wrong?
5) Impressions are to count as revelations.

You get the idea.

So they asked if anyone had any questions? I raised my hand asked nicely, "Has this been piloted tested" Everyone looks at me like I said the Church is not true. A former temple President in no uncertain terms said "it has been tested in a number of stakes in the USA. And it was successful" The tone was, "what are you a trouble maker, what kind of HP are you to ask a question and doubt the leadership of the brethren." The group leader said, "yes its a tested program and going to help us become more Christ like, etc." Talk about a put down.

I did not follow up with my second question which was "were can I see the results of this pilot test.?"

So as I see it, the ward is going to sit around and discuss people's needs. Everyone will have personal revelation how to solve the problem. This is a group dynamic that is doomed to fail big time in my books. I know I am not going to participate. And just that thinking will set me apart as one that should be shunned in the ward. But then I have ethics.

Bottom line or take away from the meeting. What we have been doing in the Church since I was a kid is not working and I am unless to Lord and the community. This is going to make me a better Church member, more in tune with Christ's love and what I have done or am doing up to this point has been a failure. Based on the response to my simple question yes I am a piece of poo in their eyes. Can't wait to see this process get going.

I honestly thought it was a good question and deserved a good answer.But if you know anything about group dynamics, that question made me the informal group leader and this is going to happen a lot with these unskilled Church leaders running these groups. I thought I knew what the responses was going be before I asked the question but I wanted to test it to make sure I was right. I was hoping I was wrong. No one is going to be allowed to create any opposition in these meetings and that will defeat the whole purpose of these councils. It will kill the spirit of the members even more than it is now. Comments?

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 07:15PM

My first thought was what if I have a revelation about Sis. Buhzoms during the second week? Do I just sit on it until the first of February?

I am assuming that this is for the high priests only... Although why shouldn’t the priests quorum have a shot at straightening people’s lives out?

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: SEcular Priest ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 07:55PM

Is is for all Priesthood groups and Relief Society. During first week of each month

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: slskipper ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 07:34PM

I can't wait till they approach me with all their revelations on on how to fix me...

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: summer ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 07:35PM

I don't get what the Mormon church is trying to accomplish. It sounds somewhat like the current ward council. How is it different?

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/03/2017 07:35PM by summer.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: SEcular Priest ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 07:57PM

This will involve everyone not just ward council. I guess the ward council failed. I do not know. This is going to be one big ward council.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: LeftTheMorg ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 07:38PM

Is this something that is done only in High Priests group?
They certainly aren't going to allow women to receive revelation on how to fix men are they?

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: SEcular Priest ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 08:07PM

Women will receive revelation for all the women and families, etc in the ward or branch. They too will all sit in a circle and discuss ward issues, members issues, make assignments. As explained by Church handouts today. because people are receiving revelation, this will improve the ward and help us to be more Christlike because all revelation comes from God. I guess the top brethren feel that everyone will know revelation when they feel it. The other big word in the hand out is inspiration. Everyone is going to be inspired.

Sorry folks but as a person who majored in group dynamics at university, I can not put a handle on this. But they said it was tested and it worked. Who am I to argue with the Church. We were told today that this is how Christ would do it. Can not argue with that. But he did not sit around with the 5000 and have everyone speak their revelation.

We were told today that non members will want to come to church and be baptized because of the warm fuzzy feelings everyone is going to have as they participate in the council meetings. Non Members are going to feel the spirit of Christ because I guess up to now just have not had it. The bishops have not been receiving revelation I guess.

I see this as desperation from the top 15 I mean 14.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Elyse ( )
Date: December 05, 2017 11:38AM

Note how the church stopped people who are giving the lessons from seeking personal revelations about what they are teaching. Strict obedience to sticking with the material is required instead.

Now they come up with receiving revelations and impressions for others?
The insanity keeps getting worse.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: numbersRus ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 04:09PM

Something like, "Yes, I received a revelation I will become wealthy by selling this magic [fruit juice, oil, supplement, clothing, etc]. Who wants to be in my downline?"

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: desertman ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 07:46PM

It becomes apparent to me that this could rapidly open the door to forcible interference as we rush backward in time to the glorious days of the inquisition when dissenters were tortured and then burned to death roped to a stake.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: cl2 ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 08:10PM

So the ward members are going to be talking about me AGAIN.

I've been watching the Leah Remini program on A&E. I don't think mormonism goes nearly as far as Scientology, but this sounds like something they might consider okay to do.

Basically a testimony meeting where you don't get to NOT bear your testimony. Glad I'm out.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Possibilities ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 12:30AM

It impresses me as a third-grade (as in eight-year-olds) class in a compulsory group book report.

Everyone has the same book, everyone knows what happens to Charlotte and her little pig. Everyone knows the Farmer is both the good guy and the bad guy, and knows not to talk trash about Fern's dad. Nothing new to be "revealed."

Pieces of how the story is to fit into others' lives are to be endlessly twisted into "inspiration."

I think it's both punishment and desperation from the Q for "everyone" griping that no new revelations have been forthcoming from them, just the same old boring re-hashing about Joe's webs.

"All right, you peons, you think it's so easy, YOU try doing it for awhile! It's tedious, everyone is a critic, and it sucks the joy right out of what would otherwise be a very comfortable life!"

...Because, they got nuttin' left, and the Farmer is not taking their calls. No one likes the boats, little factories and the like, anymore. There's no bonus for the member who delivers the next Big Idea for GC. All they need is one, maybe two.

Their lives are so far removed from the lives of the rank and file, they know they cannot be relevant without input from the rank and file.

If they can get the yards mowed and toilets cleaned, what the heck? They might as well kick it up a notch.

I don't have a PhD in group counseling, but think I could get one in con jobs.

Your second question would have been answered with a look as if you had asked the similarities between Joe Smith and Roy Moore.

My question for you, OP, is, since when are the actions of the Q designed to benefit the rank and file membership? I think you err in assuming this new project is about anything other than benefit to the organization, or rather, those at the very top of it.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: SEcular Priest ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 08:28AM

This document is being used in Our Stake, and I think it is from Stake leaders training sessions by the big boys and girls in SLC.

I quote:

"During the Council meeting"

"leaders invite members to share experiences on impressions they've had from previous meetings, home teaching visits, hallways conversataions, etc." HALLWAY CONVERSATIONS!!!!! What!!!!

"Everyone counsels together about the topic, listens to each other and seeks the guidance of the spirit."

"Leaders summarizes key points and extends invitations to act"

"After the Council Meeting"

"Everyone acts on impressions and invitations, together and as individuals. Make notes for actions." This violates one of their Principles of Counseling Together" in the document. "While none should feel pressured to participate, everyone should feel safe sharing comments and without fear of being criticized." Well based on my intro to this post, this ward has a long way to goes to make this place feel safe.

Let's look at the revelation process according to this training document.

"revelation is among us"

"plan on ways to act on impressions recieved by the spirit"

"Use scriptures, words of former and latter-day saint prophets, and seers, etc to guide us." "That which we discuss is also revelation specific to us."

This is the best one. "Sitting in a circle can help cultivate a spirit of sharing and open discussion." Yes, if you are well trained. have a deep understanding of group dynamics and have effective trained leaders, etc it works very well.

"Everyone is invited to share thoughts and experiences as guided by the spirit." How many here can remember some really cool testimony meetings were people bore their testimonies and just went off the deep end? They said they were inspired to say these things!!

Some one got paid big bucks to think this up and sell it to the top people. It is ripe with all sorts of problems and possible law suits, or the top people are trying to convince the masses, the Church receives revelation and they know at the top they do not.

As a follow up part of our training yesterday, the leader taked about two people in the ward. I do not know them. Based on what I heard, I learned more about their personal issues than I want to know, need to know, should know or ever want to know. I wrote on my training handout, "violation of personal boundaries." If this is an example of how these groups are going to work, wards will get smaller not larger. Some will say SEcular Priest, "You don't have the spirit with you." Not the case. This has nothing to do with the spirit but everything to do with ethics.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 08:59AM

They are authorizing "hunches"!!

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: ificouldhietokolob ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 09:47AM

elderolddog Wrote:
> They are authorizing "hunches"!!

...which is all "revelation" has ever been.
Unless you're horny Joe, in which case lust for teenage girls is "revelation."

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: lilburne ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 08:36AM

This is a license for the ward crazies to come out of the box and 'reveal' the future to all. It's heading in the fast lane to fundy land

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Eric K ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 09:32AM

This seems beyond weird. I know I would of immediately dropped out of such discussions. It is uncomfortable. I believe many others who are active will feel the same way. If this takes off church wide, it will not last long in my opinion.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: eternal1 ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 11:54AM

I agree. I thought sitting on ward councils was uncomfortable, but this would be intolerable for me. I can see the ward crazies and the wannabes dominating the discussions. A total gossip fest.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: blind mule ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 09:48AM

Ha Groupthink!...... takeaway, don't be a decenter or the collective "group" will hand you your head! or in other words, the group has spoken and the thinking is done!

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: iris ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 12:31PM

I would refer your leaders to James E. Faust’s Ensign March 2002 article, Communion with the Holy Spirit.

“Latter-day Saints, having received the gift of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands, are entitled to personal inspiration in the small events of life as well as when they are confronted with the giant Goliaths of life. If worthy, we are entitled to receive revelations for ourselves, parents for their children, and members of the Church in their callings. But the right of revelation for others does not extend beyond our own stewardship.”

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 12:43PM

This is how they blind you so that you have no choice but to be part of the "blind leading the blind," as they say. You will salute your leaders if you know what's good for you!

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Paintingnotloggedin ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 01:32PM

every time another member's boundaries are violated, members see that their own boundaries are insignificant or continually taught that their own boundaries do not exist.

This experience of being taught, by the priesthood authorities authorized official church seal of approval, further demonstrates to members experiencing participating that their boundaries are invalid, just as the members being discussed boundaries are invalid (invalidated) showing that one's own boundaries are invalidated.

and if your boundaries are invalidated, your thoughts are invalidated as well, aren't they/ your ideas are invalid/ your feelings are invalid/ This would make it easier to make your logic, logical complaint, about history or dogma or doctrine and every experience or fact based decision- invalid. you you can't make it. you are invalid. invalidated.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Justin ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 01:53PM

This is simply an invitation for people to find a reason to skip Priesthood/RS the first Sunday of the month. Looks like a good time to go visit grandma in another town.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: messygoop ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 02:01PM

I hated ward council. I felt so uncomfortable discussing why people were not "righteous" enough. It was 100% gossip and speculation. If only this program had hit during the 90s, then there would have been a chance to save at least one of my parents. The idea of being openly criticized goes beyond many members.

I can't understand why anybody thinks this is a good idea. Do they think all the doubters will be "shushed" out of the room if all the TBM's begin to howl and wail?

I look back at my uncomfortable aaronic priesthood years. It strikes me funny that the leaders that were most harsh on the youth were never in our quorum classes or in our youth Sunday School classes. I would have welcomed this discussion forum. I would have liked the venue to openly address their abuse and risk being ex-communicated. Instead, I came from the age that TSCC was always right. Don't you dare question their shitty guidance and wisdom! ~ So Sit Down and Shut Up! I had several dreams in which I not only confronted my abusers (Blowhard and Hack) but I actually physically attacked them.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 02:10PM

It's "conform or else!" and they can see that the 'or else' is being the butt of gossip and, ultimately, condemnation.

"Here is the sword we are so proud to hang over your heads!"
- - LDS Agents of Ghawd, Almighty

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Justin ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 02:24PM

I show up for worship on Sunday morning. I participate for about an hour. I go home refreshed. I come back in another week. Repeat. If I want to get more involved I can, but there is little pressure to do so. Mostly it is simply God and me, and how I choose to live out my faith. The LDS Church is really a controlling organization intent on taking advantage of you for its benefit. It is all about activating you so they can get into your wallet.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: messygoop ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 03:14PM

Here's an example of the sanctimonious pseudo righteousness attitude crap in the HALLWAY that I remember very well from 30 years ago.

"Hey Brother Goop! How did your son Messy do on Friday's night game? Did they win?" asked an interested member on the way to Sunady School.

"Well they did pretty well. I think Messy made some great tackles and.." stated by my proud Dad.

---"Brethren. You need to refrain from such idle talk. This is the Lord's House and not some type of locker room. We come to worship our Savior, not glorify ourselves about unimportant temporal matters. Let's keep our minds focused on spiritual matters as we walk quietly to our Sunday School classes" replied Brother Interloper.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: zenmaster nli ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 03:19PM

This would be a great document to send to MormonLeaks :)

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: jkdd259 ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 03:24PM

"By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this way comes."

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Pooped ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 03:49PM

I agree with you, SEcular Priest. This experience will make anyone familiar with group counseling squirm.

With regard to the specific goals of "helping the members" and "helping kids avoid temptation" I find this an incredibly strange way to find solutions. Why not just ASK each member individually what he need help with? It's a far easier and more direct route. It seems to me that one of the major needs of members is to get answers to sincere questions about LDS, Inc. that nobody wants to provide. So, if someone gets a revelation during this meeting process that members need more freedom of information about how the church is being managed, where money is going, and why doctrine keeps changing, their "revelation" will be heard, respected, and acted upon? I very much doubt it.

And from my perspective, the only temptation the church seems to be sincerely concerned about, with regard to the youth, is their temptation to ditch Mormonism. It's boring, repetitive, and old fashioned to today's kids. They have been telling us this for years. Does it really take revelation from God to figure this out? And when someone does actually present these facts to the group will the group do anything more than just discuss it to death or will they truly stop repeating doctrine ad nauseam, make it less boring (if that's even possible), and bring Mormonism into the 21st century? I just don't see it happening. What a waste of precious time.

I also agree with your request to see the results of this, so called, pilot testing. I see it as just another ruse to pretend that the LDS,Inc. board of directors cares about the membership and wants to help them. They only care about the bottom line, as always.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: messygoop ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 04:42PM

I think this is what the fossils really want to hear when they have to visit their home wards. "Sure the church has a few problems with its history, BUT all that really matters is that my family has been SO blessed by living the gospel principles and following the counsel of the brethren."

This program creates a new parrot-style monologue.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/04/2017 04:43PM by messygoop.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: ANON 3W ( )
Date: December 05, 2017 12:03AM

Well, with everyone counseling everyone, and everyone throwing out revelation for the group members, the one thing it does is to take this all off the bishop. If you are poor, you're now being discussed and advised by the ward, not the bishop. This all frees the bishop etc the ability to focus on more serious sin. I wonder if spousal emotional and physical abuse requests for help will now have women being sent to these ward council.
Well one thing now it will sanctify gossip and the spreading of untruths.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Pooped ( )
Date: December 05, 2017 02:31PM

This is SPOT ON!!!

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Honest TBM ( )
Date: December 05, 2017 05:15AM

If people did not feel so super comfortable and encouraged to ask any question at Church then they would start to think the Church is a dangerous cult that they and everyone should flee from. Having a true Church, i.e. so awesomely honest and transparent on everything, is wonderful :) If I were Satan and determines to deatroy the Church's reputation then the first thing I would do is make sure that people are discouraged from asking honest questions.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: readwrite ( )
Date: December 06, 2017 12:03AM

Monthly coffee gossip discusselship friendship bullshit superstitious worship fellowship - but without the coffee.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: MRM ( )
Date: December 06, 2017 08:36PM

My experience with a group open discussion in priesthood was the time they moved the two so-called revelations from the Book of Abraham to the Doctrines and Covenants.

My simple question was why they put the revelations in the Book of Abraham in the first place?

Oh my. The condemnation was immediate. How could I even begin to question the brethren? I was fairly new and learned real quick to not ask questions.

Good luck on this new program.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: catnip ( )
Date: December 07, 2017 04:47AM

Ami I understanding this correctly? There will be no structure, no central "theme" to talks, no direction?

This is going to be a giant mess. I'm glad I am out of there.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: SEcular Priest ( )
Date: December 07, 2017 08:55AM

according to the instructions our ward and stake has received. It is based on what I said at the beginning of this post. "Revelation is among us." People are to come with "impressions they have" about the topic. People are to share what they have heard in the hallway conversations. What could go wrong is everyone is truly in tune with the spirit?

Example: Our HP leaders are in charge of getting a cleaning crew for one month for Edmonton temple. This has been painful to watch. I have no recommend so I can not do participate in the cleaning. So first of January in Elders, HP and Relief, come prepared with personal impressions, personal revelation and hallway talk on how we can motivate people to come clean the temple.

HP sits in a circle on the stage as we were told we would be doing. Big white board so HP group leader can make notes of all personal revelation, impressions, thoughts for current local and SLC leaders. Opening prayer to ask for spirit to be them. HP group leader introduces the topic and sits down.


10 minutes: HP#1 "My wife and I prayed about this and got the impression we should have a special ward fast." HP group leader writes it down.

5 minutes later: HP#2 "We prayed about it in our daily family prayers and we felt that the Bishop should make it a calling and set people apart." HP group leader writes it down.

No waiting Period: HP#3 "I have the impression that somehow it has always worked, we have always got people in the past, so lets just continue. Can we talk about........." HP group leader writes it down.

No waiting period: SEcular Priest "I have really had a strong impression that the Church should spend some of their funds and hire local Church people as cleaners" HP group leader writes it down.

No waiting period: HP#4 "If we love the Church and love Jesus we should be happy to clean His house." HP group leader writes it down.

No waiting period: HP#5 " I was talking to some people last Sunday in the hallway and they think if we ask the youth to clean the baptism are that would help the burden of getting adults." HP group leader writes it down.

HP#6 "Wait a minute, I was talking to X and Y about this in the hallway and not you." Does HP group leader write this down?

By now the rest of the HP are going "What the hell is happening" in their heads.

At the end, the HP group summarizes what he write down and only God knows what will happen next.

No matter what happens some people are going to leave feeling that their input does not count. Some people are going to leave thinking, it is a waste of time. Some people will leave with hurt feelings because their "revelation was not valued." I would be leaving thinking, what is happening in the Elder's group and Relief Society.

Am I off base here? This process requires knowing how to run a group. Knowing how group dynamics work. Knowing who are informal leaders and who are formal leaders and knowing that informal leaders can really sway the group, as given by the example with SEcular Priest. How do you create honesty in the group? How do you create trust? How do you set boundaries which is hard to do if the focus is on when "revelation is among us" and "impressions" and "hallway talk" are the guiding factors.

As a group leader, you have to know all the roles people play in a group and act accordingly. This is not easy to do. It requires lots and lots of training. This is big time stuff the Church is doing. Based on the revelation the Church has these days, this process is doomed.

I see this as many people getting hurt and that is not right.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: messygoop ( )
Date: December 07, 2017 10:48AM

You're right! It's going to hurt many feelings and result in the few faithful ones wanting to avoid attending it.

I remember some great bonehead leadership decisions. One year about 12 active HP families did not have an active HT. Yep, the HP Group Leader thought he was inspired to assign 4-5 inactive HP members to a bunch of active families in my ward. The HP yo-yo defended his decision by saying "Well they [inactives] made a covenant to obey the commandments so its up to them to do their home teaching."

This was an act of defiance because I was the ward clerk that refused to purge the names of inactive high priests from the church's database. The same HP leader also wanted me to somehow re-classify them as Elders. I informed the BP and it re-ignited previous clash of power between the two of them.

The greatness of wisdom finally came to light when an incident of my own family became part of ward council. My HP father suffered a health calamity and was hospitalized. I notified the BP, but not the HP leaders. I ended up giving my father a blessing in the hospital. He survived and recuperated. ***The HP group leader was livid that he was not informed. Moreover, he made a big deal that an elder had administered to a HP. He said "This is a travesty." I was present in the room while this was debated between the BP and the HP group leader.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/07/2017 10:49AM by messygoop.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Honest TBM ( )
Date: December 07, 2017 04:36PM

Its a good thing that revelations are always so consistent because if they weren't then people would begin to have Doubts and that would be dangerous.

Options: ReplyQuote
Go to Topic: PreviousNext
Go to: Forum ListMessage ListNew TopicSearchLog In

Screen Name: 
Your Email (optional): 
Spam prevention:
Please, enter the code that you see below in the input field. This is for blocking bots that try to post this form automatically.
 **         ******   ********   *******    *******  
 **        **    **  **        **     **  **     ** 
 **        **        **        **                ** 
 **        **        ******    ********    *******  
 **        **        **        **     **         ** 
 **        **    **  **        **     **  **     ** 
 ********   ******   **         *******    *******