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Posted by: Bruce R. McDonkie ( )
Date: May 14, 2019 10:30PM

Here is a partial list of some "suggestions" I've made to the Top 15 the last 10 years. Why? I'm not sure. Maybe because I have a slight hope that the Church could actually do some good in the world, except merely to make money for the Church so that the Church can invest it to make more money, so that the Church can invest "that" to make more money...

The Book of Mormon probably started out as a novel by Solomon Spaulding, who wrote the novel because he needed MORe MONey.

*2-hours on Sunday instead of 3. Priesthood and Relief Society twice a month and Sunday School twice a month, alternating.
*Saturday Wards

*Companionships no more than two months (I had four months with a selfish lying immoral bully from Alpine Utah...pure HELL)
*Trained bishops who are retired men or career men (i.e. bishop as vocation)

*"Matrons" in wards in charge of asking girls about their sex lives (instead of Bishops asking them). Reports to Bishop. Accompanies females if Bishop needs to "follow up". No one-on-one with females in Bishop's offices.

*"Feast Day" (pot luck) instead of Testimony Meeting (I'm hearing lots of "dead air" time during F&T meeting, but that's just what I hear)

*The Church "pays" for missions: no longer expect parents/missionaries to pay for their own mission (Mission Presidents don't "pay" for their own mission so why should missionaries?)

*One year missions for English-speakers, but 18 months to 24 months for foreign language missions: special BYU discount for foreign language missionaries.

*3 months of the mission must be served in some service capacity such as volunteering for Red Cross, Salvation Army, etc. (today, missionaries are expected to "find" their own way to "serve")

*Language study for young Members of the Church, on Sunday, so they'll be prepared for foreign language mission.

*Plain Language Book of Mormon for investigators (no more thee's thous, dosts and "And it came to passes").

*Mission Discussions in one "book" in large print edition with list of Questions and Answers in the back so missionaries don't have to "think" of answers to: "Elders, did your Church ever teach that blacks are cursed?" or "Elders, why can't women hold the priesthood?" or "Elders, can I believe in evolution and still be a Mormon?"

*A "Mormon Center" apartment and Church complex built in every major metro center in Latin America and Europe so that young Mormons can "gather" into one place in countries where there are relatively few Mormons.

*Changing The Book of Mormon title in Chinese from "Devil Gate Religion Book" to "More Good Religion Book".

*Establishing "More Good English schools" in foreign countries, and training foreign-language missionaries to "teach" English instead of knocking on doors all day.

*Having black Mormons write a book "Testimonies of Black Mormons" and have a history of Black Mormons and explain, honestly and openly, the priesthood and temple ban legacy and when it was lifted (i.e. being honest about the Church's past). Offering this book via Black college newspapers, internet, door to door pamphlets that missionaries can pass out, etc.

*Building restaurants in Metro areas, and having missionaries pass out "free dinners for families" at doors. Missionaries would spend some of their missions as "servers" and dishwashers, etc., at these restaurants.

*Establish the "Mormon Legion" which would open soup kitchens and "showers and laundries" for homeless, as a way to show 'Mormons care' (actually...they don't).

I made a lot more suggestions, but the Top 15 rejected most because they "cost money". The Church likes money coming "in" but they don't like money going "out". With declining converts and many going inactive or resigning, the Church will continue to place all "blame" on "lazy missionaries" and "lazy members" ad infinitum ad nauseum.

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: May 14, 2019 10:48PM

None of your suggestions were astonishing, much less outlandish.

But what is astonishing and outlandish is that you would spend the time and energy to help the church be a better organization. Especially after about the first two or three years, when it became obvious that they were not receptive. Unless of course, you want to take some credit for the change to a two-hour block.

Could you give us any insight into your motivation(s)?

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Posted by: Bruce R. McDonkie ( )
Date: May 15, 2019 05:41AM

I don't know if the 2-hour block was my original idea, or someone else. I don't Jesus came down and parted the heavens to command it to Rusty. Yes, I've been suggesting that for 10 years.

The Church has a LOT of money, and the Church is using that money to built Temples, so old Mormon farts can get more sleep, and old Mormon women can have something to do now that they are alone and their husbands are gone. I HOPED that the Church would "think" about putting some of those billions to some "good".

Yes, I eventually "gave up". Obviously. I don't see Saturday Wars. I don't see Matrons in Wards. I don't see the "Mormon Legion" establishing soup kitchens and shower/laundries for homeless. I don't see my other ideas being used. So, yes, I gave up. How many times did I write to them? About 8 times in total over a period of 10 years.

elderolddog Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> None of your suggestions were astonishing, much
> less outlandish.
>
> But what is astonishing and outlandish is that you
> would spend the time and energy to help the church
> be a better organization. Especially after about
> the first two or three years, when it became
> obvious that they were not receptive. Unless of
> course, you want to take some credit for the
> change to a two-hour block.
>
> Could you give us any insight into your
> motivation(s)?

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Posted by: Dave the Atheist ( )
Date: May 15, 2019 10:04AM

Two hour block ?
How about a one hour block.

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Posted by: ApostNate ( )
Date: May 16, 2019 03:10AM

I prefer the none hour block I've been attending the past 17 years.:)

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Posted by: alsd ( )
Date: May 16, 2019 02:47PM

Bruce R. McDonkie Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I don't know if the 2-hour block was my original
> idea, or someone else. I don't Jesus came down and
> parted the heavens to command it to Rusty. Yes,
> I've been suggesting that for 10 years.
>
> The Church has a LOT of money, and the Church is
> using that money to built Temples, so old Mormon
> farts can get more sleep, and old Mormon women can
> have something to do now that they are alone and
> their husbands are gone. I HOPED that the Church
> would "think" about putting some of those billions
> to some "good".
>
> Yes, I eventually "gave up". Obviously. I don't
> see Saturday Wars. I don't see Matrons in Wards. I
> don't see the "Mormon Legion" establishing soup
> kitchens and shower/laundries for homeless. I
> don't see my other ideas being used. So, yes, I
> gave up. How many times did I write to them? About
> 8 times in total over a period of 10 years.
>
> elderolddog Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > None of your suggestions were astonishing, much
> > less outlandish.
> >
> > But what is astonishing and outlandish is that
> you
> > would spend the time and energy to help the
> church
> > be a better organization. Especially after
> about
> > the first two or three years, when it became
> > obvious that they were not receptive. Unless
> of
> > course, you want to take some credit for the
> > change to a two-hour block.
> >
> > Could you give us any insight into your
> > motivation(s)?

We had a two hour block in my branch for several years. About two years ago it went to 2.5 hours. Obviously now, it is back to two hours.

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Posted by: Aloysius ( )
Date: May 14, 2019 10:54PM

I'd like to see a copy of the letters you got back from "the Top 15" telling you they are rejecting your suggestions because they "cost money."

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Posted by: Bruce R. McDonkie ( )
Date: May 15, 2019 05:50AM

I sent my letters to the homes of the Top 15, to make sure they got them. Had I sent them to 50 East North Temple, the Top 15 never would have seen them.

Did not get any letters back, but I SWEAR that Elder Ballard quoted from one of my letters, in his address to CES Teachers he did about 5 years ago. Word-for-word quote from my letter, about 3 paragraphs. He did not mention my name.

I am "guessing" that the major reason that the Top 15 didn't take my advice on MOST items is because THEY COST MONEY and the Brethren don't want to spend money unless they get "Money" in return (i.e. profits). Prophets for profit. Just a guess, but an "educated" one.


Aloysius Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I'd like to see a copy of the letters you got back
> from "the Top 15" telling you they are rejecting
> your suggestions because they "cost money."

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Posted by: Aloysius ( )
Date: May 16, 2019 09:56PM

Interesting. So all the quotes in your post aren't really quotes at all. They more fir emphasis, ir something?

And your statement that they rejected your suggestion "because they 'cost money'" wasn't really a statement of fact at all. It was just supposition. Perhaps you meant to say,"I guess it's because they cost money," or "maybe it's because they might cost money."

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Posted by: Bruce R. McDonkie ( )
Date: May 15, 2019 05:47AM

P.S.

I also suggested to the Top 15 that they...

*All a simple chapel wedding in which all relatives could attend a day or two before the Temple Sealing. First suggested that 3 years ago.

*The Church should build a City of Refuge for the homeless Afrikaners families in South Africa, with the agreement of the families that their children would attend LDS Services until they turn 16 years old, or, if already 16, until they turn 18.

*That the Church tell LDS parents of gay children to STOP shunning them, and also to tell gay and lesbian Mormons (children of active Mormon parents) to NOT go on missions, but to get college educations instead with their parents help.

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Posted by: macaRomney ( )
Date: May 15, 2019 08:00AM

These are very good suggestions. I'm curious about this homeless epedimic in South Africa. Africaners out on the street? That's probably not true. From what I've seen on Youtube, the Africaners are doing pretty well so far, but the blacks are upset because they aren't doing as well as Mandella promised. Getting rid of Arpathied didn't usher in some new wonderful prosperity for every African.

But if your aware of something different please elaborate.

And the suggestion about serving (missionaries) caught my notice. Up until recently the serving has been very unorganized. When I was out we would sit in a resthome for 2 hours, then there was the habitat for humanity (another lottery scam) that we served in. There was the soup kitchen where I was in charge of pots of boiling tea for everyone.

Now they are doing service for members which could be good. But I think members ought to pay them if they want construction work or babysitting done.

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Posted by: Bruce R. McDonkie ( )
Date: May 16, 2019 02:15AM

Yes, there are about 80,000 Afrikaners who are living in "camps" outside the cities. Most have no schools. No toilets. They eat perhaps 4 to 6 hot meals a week, which is brought to them by charity agencies. Otherwise, old bread and sausage. They have no jobs, no hope or prospect for jobs in the future. I suggested to the Top 15 that the men be taught how to drive semi-trucks, and fill "shortage" of over-the-road truck drivers in the U.S. (the shortage is so bad Russians and Somalians are being brought in from outside the U.S. by the thousands to drive trucks). The Afrikaners speak English (as a second language), and the men could live in trucks and send money home.

The REST of the Afrikaners are doing from very well, to barely surviving. Afrikaners are being replaced by blacks in most less-skilled jobs. Afrikaners who are doctors/lawyers/air-line pilots, etc., keep jobs only because not enough qualified blacks to replace them "yet".


The ANC only helps Party members and their families. The ANC has done little to nothing for the black in South African who is not at least mid-management in the party or government, or a close relative of said.


macaRomney Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> These are very good suggestions. I'm curious about
> this homeless epedimic in South Africa. Africaners
> out on the street? That's probably not true. From
> what I've seen on Youtube, the Africaners are
> doing pretty well so far, but the blacks are upset
> because they aren't doing as well as Mandella
> promised. Getting rid of Arpathied didn't usher in
> some new wonderful prosperity for every African.
>
> But if your aware of something different please
> elaborate.
>
> And the suggestion about serving (missionaries)
> caught my notice. Up until recently the serving
> has been very unorganized. When I was out we would
> sit in a resthome for 2 hours, then there was the
> habitat for humanity (another lottery scam) that
> we served in. There was the soup kitchen where I
> was in charge of pots of boiling tea for everyone.
>
>
> Now they are doing service for members which could
> be good. But I think members ought to pay them if
> they want construction work or babysitting done.

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Posted by: macaRomney ( )
Date: May 16, 2019 10:55PM

That's very interesting. I'm researching to find out more but there isn't much on the web. All I can find is a story about a family trying to get to canada and being rejected because canada thinks they are racist and not in real danger.

What I have found on the web is a bunch of stories about africans trying to steel africaners lands. and Africans trying to get to Europe.

The perspectives I'm getting from the internet don't seem extremely reliable though....

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 03:00AM

Bruce R. McDonkie Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Yes, there are about 80,000 Afrikaners who are
> living in "camps" outside the cities. Most have no
> schools. No toilets. They eat perhaps 4 to 6 hot
> meals a week, which is brought to them by charity
> agencies. Otherwise, old bread and sausage. They
> have no jobs, no hope or prospect for jobs in the
> future.

Source?

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Posted by: Jordan ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 10:26AM

Lot's Wife Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Bruce R. McDonkie Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > Yes, there are about 80,000 Afrikaners who are
> > living in "camps" outside the cities. Most have
> no
> > schools. No toilets. They eat perhaps 4 to 6
> hot
> > meals a week, which is brought to them by
> charity
> > agencies. Otherwise, old bread and sausage.
> They
> > have no jobs, no hope or prospect for jobs in
> the
> > future.
>
> Source?

Maybe he needs to do a lengthy cut and paste job to prove his viewpoint.

I've no idea what the precise numbers are, but there have been a number of white people expelled from farms in South Africa for some years now. Same in Zimbabwe. If these people have any money, they end up overseas - the UK and Australia being two main destinations.

South Africa has become very corrupt, and the police coverage is extremely uneven. This is partly because some areas are very remote, and partly because police control has broken down. There are roads in South Africa with signs on them telling you not to travel on them at night.

I'm sure you'd love to paint this as some kind of rightful reclamation of African lands against the evil whites, but it isn't that simple: black farm workers are also frequent casualties, just for working in these places. A lot of it is probably pure criminal opportunism, rather than political activism. (As was the case during the Irish wars, when "activists" helped themselves to any money, valuables or even non-consenting females who happened to be around).

It's never become cause célèbre among fashionable people in the west, because it's happened to the wrong people.

Nelson Mandela may have made some rapprochement to try and heal the divisions in South Africa, but many of his successors, (infected by a certain political doctrine of European origin I'm not allowed to name), have not. The ANC has had a monopoly on control since then, at least on the national stage.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 02:48PM

Source?

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 09:29PM

his libido?

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 09:49PM

Jordan's? I was thinking probably the opposite.

Anyway, he did write something I thought perceptive when he said "I've no idea what the precise numbers are." A cynic--do you know any cynics?--might venture that such ignorance precludes intelligent comment, but I still hold out hope.

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Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: May 15, 2019 07:35AM

By my count, 9 of your 18 suggestions would cost nothing or only a small amount, such as editing the pseudo-Elizabethan English out of the BoM.

Good suggestions all, IMO. The suggestion of a matron conducting female interviews is a good one (I'd suggest the RS president).

There are a number of other ways they need to improve the role of women in the church. Women should be able to stand in blessing circle for infants, conduct and preform weddings, baptisms, confirmations, funerals, bless and pass the LDS Sacrament, administer tothe sick. Most, if not all ward and stake and general callings should be open to women.

How about a maximum term limit and/or mandatory retirement age for the Q15.

Go back to having real votes on approving leadership.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 05/15/2019 07:37AM by Brother Of Jerry.

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Posted by: Jordan ( )
Date: May 15, 2019 07:49AM

Brother Of Jerry Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> By my count, 9 of your 18 suggestions would cost
> nothing or only a small amount, such as editing
> the pseudo-Elizabethan English out of the BoM.

I disagree with this. The Book of Mormon is what it is. Changing its language detracts from that. It is not that hard to read for people with half a brain (less in some cases).

Changing the language won't make it any better. Sure, there are some formatting issues which could be altered, but that's another matter. The only thing that would improve it, is the removal of "it came to pass" in most cases, which some LDS splinter groups have done.

> Good suggestions all, IMO. The suggestion of a
> matron conducting female interviews is a good one
> (I'd suggest the RS president).

You're assuming it's good for an adult to be asking a child personal questions. A woman can be just as creepy, judgemental etc as a man.

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Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: May 15, 2019 10:29AM

Agreed that the whole interview thing, especially of children, is problematic.

Disagree about the fake Elizabethan English. Anybody who grew up LDS or watched way too much Masterpiece Theater is used to the thous and dosts. Everyone else has a WTF experience. Granted, the real problem with the BoM is not the archaic language.

I cringe when I hear religious types use the word partake. That went out of common usage about a hundred and fifty years ago. Mormons think it makes them sound spirichul. Blech.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: May 15, 2019 08:26PM

Ah yes, but when the irreligious use such words the effect is exquisite. The believers are caught unsure whether you are a fusty linguist or intentionally ridiculing their religion.

Thank heaven for elegant old words!

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Posted by: Jordan ( )
Date: May 16, 2019 03:07PM

I hear/read "partake" occasionally in the big wide world, usually ironically.

Words that I tend to associate with the LDS more are "Dispensation" (in the sense of a time period - idiosyncratic, but not unique to LDS), "bowels of mercy" (now there's a KJVism, I don't like) and so on.

In the sense of the BoM purely being a work of literature, altering the style is a betrayal/distortion of the author's intent. What about foreign language translations of the BoM? Well, these are for people who don't speak English or are more comfortable in another language. There is a saying in Italian - "traduttore, traditore", which means "to translate is to betray", and that is exemplified in that phrase itself, since the English does not share the wordplay of the Italian. The original version of anything is what the author intended. On rare occasions a translation can improve a work, but that still distorts the original work.

If you've ever seen English dialect poetry rendered into standard English, it becomes something alien to the original, and rids it of its flavor.

In the case of the BoM, it is clearly written in modern English, with both conscious archaisms (inherited from the KJV), and unconscious ones (dating to the period it was published in). Updating the language of the BoM:

* Destroys the stylistic intent.
* Destroys the link to the KJV.
* Obscures literary techniques or removes them altogether.
* Changes its register.

It turns it into a different work of literature.

I'm well aware that the BoM has been altered. Most of these are minor cosmetic changes, a few doctrinal changes (which is a betrayal of the work) and reformatting. However, I think the overall flavor remains.

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Posted by: Historischer ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 02:28PM

It's a work that absolutely needs to be betrayed, if the LDS church hopes to use it any longer for instruction or doctrine. It was never an authentic work anyway, just a
lot of quotes tossed together with some overbearing sermons and scary frontier stories thrown in.

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Posted by: Jordan ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 03:25PM

Historischer Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It's a work that absolutely needs to be betrayed,
> if the LDS church hopes to use it any longer for
> instruction or doctrine.

Don't agree at all. In the same way, I hate it sometimes when I see someone on the TV who is subtitled because they have a foreign or non-standard accent... It makes people lazy. It is written in the same language as we are writing in.

Some forms of English *still* use thou and thee colloquially by the way.

> It was never an authentic
> work anyway,

Well, that's another matter. In some senses, it is authentic. It is an historical record of the time it was written in. It's a product of its time.

There are a few much later writers than Smith who have used the KJV style. I've mentioned Oahspe elsewhere, but the Welsh short story writer Caradoc Evans also does so to great stylistic effect for his narrators, and it contrasts nicely with the dialogue which is ?twentieth century Welsh English.

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Posted by: Jordan ( )
Date: May 15, 2019 08:04AM

Bruce R. McDonkie Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> *2-hours on Sunday instead of 3. Priesthood and
> Relief Society twice a month and Sunday School
> twice a month, alternating.

Not your original idea. Some want it down to an hour/hour and a half.

> *Saturday Wards

This already occurs in some parts of the world. Friday wards too.

> *Companionships no more than two months (I had
> four months with a selfish lying immoral bully
> from Alpine Utah...pure HELL)

If you don't like someone, two days is long enough. If you do, two months is too short.

> *"Matrons" in wards in charge of asking girls
> about their sex lives (instead of Bishops asking
> them). Reports to Bishop. Accompanies females if
> Bishop needs to "follow up". No one-on-one with
> females in Bishop's offices.

You're assuming women are incapable of being creepy. That is far from the case.

In fact, when I was at high school, one of the female teachers was busy at it with my classmate. He was underage at the time.

> *"Feast Day" (pot luck) instead of Testimony
> Meeting (I'm hearing lots of "dead air" time
> during F&T meeting, but that's just what I hear)

They already do this afterwards (after wards?!). But guess what? It costs money.

> *One year missions for English-speakers, but 18
> months to 24 months for foreign language missions:

Why? English speaking countries are widespread and there is no difference.

> *3 months of the mission must be served in some
> service capacity such as volunteering for Red
> Cross, Salvation Army, etc. (today, missionaries
> are expected to "find" their own way to "serve")

The Salvation Army is a different church.

> *Language study for young Members of the Church,
> on Sunday, so they'll be prepared for foreign
> language mission.

Good idea, except that there are a lot of different languages. For every Spanish, Russian or Arabic, there is an Italian, Bulgarian or Maltese. A lot of countries have a language which is not spoken widely elsewhere.

> *Plain Language Book of Mormon for investigators
> (no more thee's thous, dosts and "And it came to
> passes").

We should not pander to low intelligence and bad education in nearly any area of society. If someone is intellectually disabled, it can be explained to them.

Changing the language does not improve the book.

> *Mission Discussions in one "book" in large print
> edition with list of Questions and Answers in the
> back so missionaries don't have to "think" of
> answers to: "Elders, did your Church ever teach
> that blacks are cursed?" or "Elders, why can't
> women hold the priesthood?" or "Elders, can I
> believe in evolution and still be a Mormon?"

Have you ever heard of "Preach my Gospel"?

> *Establishing "More Good English schools" in
> foreign countries, and training foreign-language
> missionaries to "teach" English instead of
> knocking on doors all day.

They tried this in Russia and ended up being expelled.

> *Having black Mormons write a book "Testimonies of
> Black Mormons" and have a history of Black Mormons
> and explain, honestly and openly, the priesthood
> and temple ban legacy and when it was lifted (i.e.
> being honest about the Church's past). Offering
> this book via Black college newspapers, internet,
> door to door pamphlets that missionaries can pass
> out, etc.

Blacks have written about their experiences already.

> *Building restaurants in Metro areas, and having
> missionaries pass out "free dinners for families"
> at doors. Missionaries would spend some of their
> missions as "servers" and dishwashers, etc., at
> these restaurants.

Loss leader.

> *Establish the "Mormon Legion" which would open
> soup kitchens and "showers and laundries" for
> homeless, as a way to show 'Mormons care'
> (actually...they don't).

They already do have some kind of charity arm.

> I made a lot more suggestions, but the Top 15
> rejected most because they "cost money". The
> Church likes money coming "in" but they don't like
> money going "out". With declining converts and
> many going inactive or resigning, the Church will
> continue to place all "blame" on "lazy
> missionaries" and "lazy members" ad infinitum ad
> nauseum.

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Posted by: Bruce R. McDonkie ( )
Date: May 16, 2019 02:35AM

Jordan Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Bruce R. McDonkie Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > *2-hours on Sunday instead of 3. Priesthood and
> > Relief Society twice a month and Sunday School
> > twice a month, alternating.
>
> Not your original idea. Some want it down to an
> hour/hour and a half.

BRUCE: I suggested to the Top 15 "ten" years ago they bring it down to 2 hours. Others may have had the idea before me, but I don't remember hearing it before. Three hours was just TOO MUCH boredom. Also, in Third World countries, Meetinghouses have no air conditioning. Think about sitting there, in 110 heat, 90% humidity, for THREE HOURS every Sunday. AWWWWWggghhhh!!

>
> > *Saturday Wards
>
> This already occurs in some parts of the world.
> Friday wards too.

BRUCE: Yes, the Church has had Saturday Branches in Israel, and I "think" Friday branch in a few Muslim countries like Egypt. No, my idea, put a Saturday Ward in every Stake. That would better use of Meetinghouse. Also, the Church doesn't have to build as many Meetinghouses in the future if Saturday Wards were used.

>
> > *Companionships no more than two months (I had
> > four months with a selfish lying immoral bully
> > from Alpine Utah...pure HELL)
>
> If you don't like someone, two days is long
> enough. If you do, two months is too short.

BRUCE: One week is HELL with some Utah Mormon missionaries. Especially the rich immoral brats. Four Months is OUTER DARKNESS.

> > *"Matrons" in wards in charge of asking girls
> > about their sex lives (instead of Bishops
> asking
> > them). Reports to Bishop. Accompanies females
> if
> > Bishop needs to "follow up". No one-on-one with
> > females in Bishop's offices.
>
> You're assuming women are incapable of being
> creepy. That is far from the case.

BRUCE: Male Bishops should NOT be able to ask women "do you masturbate?" etc. In some cultures, the family would kill the bishop.

>
> In fact, when I was at high school, one of the
> female teachers was busy at it with my classmate.
> He was underage at the time.
>
> > *"Feast Day" (pot luck) instead of Testimony
> > Meeting (I'm hearing lots of "dead air" time
> > during F&T meeting, but that's just what I
> hear)
>
> They already do this afterwards (after wards?!).
> But guess what? It costs money.

BRUCE: No, get RID of F&T meeting completely, and replace with pot-luck. What money? Most chapels have Cultural Halls, tables, chairs, a small kitchen. Assign people to bring food. Okay, sure, paper plates and napkins cost, but not much.

>
> > *One year missions for English-speakers, but 18
> > months to 24 months for foreign language
> missions:
>
> Why? English speaking countries are widespread and
> there is no difference.

BRUCE: In English countries, what do missionaries "do"? They knock on doors, and doors, and doors, and doors, and doors, and doors, and some more doors, and go to the Mall, and knock on doors, and some more doors, and a few more doors, and go to the Library, and knock on doors, and visit Members, and knock on doors, and more doors. English Missions are excuses to get young Mormon men to read The Book of Mormon. Two years of knocking on doors, going to Malls, Libraries, bookstores, knocking on more doors. You don't need two years for that. You DO need 18 months at least to learn a foreign language well enough to converse in it well.

> > *3 months of the mission must be served in some
> > service capacity such as volunteering for Red
> > Cross, Salvation Army, etc. (today,
> missionaries
> > are expected to "find" their own way to
> "serve")
>
> The Salvation Army is a different church.

BRUCE: So? The Salvation Army helps people of all religions, and no religion. Who cares if they are a different church?

> > *Language study for young Members of the
> Church,
> > on Sunday, so they'll be prepared for foreign
> > language mission.
>
> Good idea, except that there are a lot of
> different languages. For every Spanish, Russian or
> Arabic, there is an Italian, Bulgarian or Maltese.
> A lot of countries have a language which is not
> spoken widely elsewhere.

BRUCE: Maltese are learning English. So, assign different Stakes to teach different languages. Some Stakes teach Spanish, others Italian, etc.

> > *Plain Language Book of Mormon for
> investigators
> > (no more thee's thous, dosts and "And it came
> to
> > passes").
>
> We should not pander to low intelligence and bad
> education in nearly any area of society. If
> someone is intellectually disabled, it can be
> explained to them.
>
> Changing the language does not improve the book.

BRUCE: The Archaic English in the Book of Mormon is almost UNreadable to people NOT grown up in the LDS Church or not growing up reading the King James Bible. Yes, Plain English Book of Mormon would be much more readable; especially with NOT ONE "And it came to Pass" (replace that with "Then...").

> > *Mission Discussions in one "book" in large
> print
> > edition with list of Questions and Answers in
> the
> > back so missionaries don't have to "think" of
> > answers to: "Elders, did your Church ever teach
>
> > that blacks are cursed?" or "Elders, why can't
> > women hold the priesthood?" or "Elders, can I
> > believe in evolution and still be a Mormon?"
>
> Have you ever heard of "Preach my Gospel"?

BRUCE: I have not been inside a Mormon Chapel for 10 years. Not active since 1989. I think I saw "Preach my Gospel" but that's not the point. The point is to make it easier for missionaries, so they don't have to "think" of answers to questions THEY themselves have never pondered!

>
> > *Establishing "More Good English schools" in
> > foreign countries, and training
> foreign-language
> > missionaries to "teach" English instead of
> > knocking on doors all day.
>
> They tried this in Russia and ended up being
> expelled.

BRUCE: Nope! Missionaries almost expelled because Russians aren't stupid. They KNOW Mormon missionaries are NOT English teachers! They have no training as English teachers. Train them as English teachers, and make them "real" English teachers.

> > *Having black Mormons write a book "Testimonies
> of
> > Black Mormons" and have a history of Black
> Mormons
> > and explain, honestly and openly, the
> priesthood
> > and temple ban legacy and when it was lifted
> (i.e.
> > being honest about the Church's past). Offering
> > this book via Black college newspapers,
> internet,
> > door to door pamphlets that missionaries can
> pass
> > out, etc.
>
> Blacks have written about their experiences
> already.

BRUCE: You don't understand. Have the Church mass-print a book "Testimonies of Black Mormons" and give them to missionaries to pass out to blacks for free. Non-mormon Blacks don't frequent LDS bookstores.

>
> > *Building restaurants in Metro areas, and
> having
> > missionaries pass out "free dinners for
> families"
> > at doors. Missionaries would spend some of
> their
> > missions as "servers" and dishwashers, etc., at
> > these restaurants.
>
BRUCE: People "appreciate" a real "gift". Not the BOM as a gift. Give them something they can "USE" like a free meal for the family.

>
> > *Establish the "Mormon Legion" which would open
> > soup kitchens and "showers and laundries" for
> > homeless, as a way to show 'Mormons care'
> > (actually...they don't).
>
> They already do have some kind of charity arm.

BRUCE: The Church has a Relief Society, which doesn't practice "charity" other than women visit old women, etc. The Church has "LDS Charities" but what do they do? Disaster relief. I don't mean disaster relief, I mean soup kitchens, helping the homeless, etc. The Church does not want to do this, because the homeless make bad tithepayers. NOT the point. The point is...if people "see" Mormons "helping" others, they will respect the Mormons a lot more and it will attract some of them to the Church.

> > I made a lot more suggestions, but the Top 15
> > rejected most because they "cost money". The
> > Church likes money coming "in" but they don't
> like
> > money going "out". With declining converts and
> > many going inactive or resigning, the Church
> will
> > continue to place all "blame" on "lazy
> > missionaries" and "lazy members" ad infinitum
> ad
> > nauseum.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Jordan ( )
Date: May 16, 2019 05:11AM

* I would be no more happy with a creepy woman asking my daughter whether she does certain things. Men get demonized for this, but this is bad too - sorry.

* The Salvation Army is a trinitarian church with a low opinion of the LDS.

* The LDS has some supposed charity arm. I've never had contact with it, and don't even know what it's called off the top of my head. No, I'm not talking about fast offerings - they claim to have gone to Haiti. I take it this comes out of the humanitarian aid section of the tithing slip.

I'm sure some people here will give you a critique of it, but it does exist. Whether it does much is another matter.

* You say the Book of Mormon is unreadable. While I agree that some with poor reading skills may struggle with it, it is still written in modern English, and can be read by anyone with half a braincell. In fact, most people could do with exercizing their brains occasionally onstead of vegetating in front of veiled propaganda on the TV.

Rewriting the Book of Mormon turns it into something else. Style is a huge part of literature and destroying the style is destroying the intention of the work.

You're really better off reading the children's version, a commentary or the whatever Notes book.

Sorry this is strange for me to be apparently defending the BoM here, but it is what it is. English has not moved on enough to be a different language from the text. (Try reading Chaucer in the original... Or Beowulf though!)

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Historischer ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 03:07PM

Well, the obvious intention of the work was to scare ignorant frontier people into joining a new church. Terrifying stories of genocide perpetrated by dark-skinned people were rendered in nearly impenetrable language, including poor grammar, random qualifiers, and endless repetition. You may find that an entertaining subject for literary analysis, but I hope you'd be honest enough to admit that as literature, it just doesn't work.

You can afford to sneer at people who don't understand the style and intent, since it's already familiar to you from long exposure within the church. Most outsiders, even those far better educated than you, will often miss important points because the grammar, organization, and narrative are so crude and self-referential. It's a work that requires serious, protracted and excruciating study to really understand. Since it provides so little aesthetic or historical value in return, such understanding is rarely worth the effort.

There's nothing noble or exceptional about the style and intention of the Book of Mormon. Those are precisely what the LDS church desperately needs to alter or disguise in order to retain more than a pitiful handful of members.

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Posted by: Jordan ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 04:24PM

"nearly impenetrable language, including poor grammar, random qualifiers, and endless repetition."

Funnily enough, the repetition is a feature of Biblical style, and is common in ancient Semitic literature, both in Hebrew and Arabic.

Smith picked that up by osmosis from hearing and reading scripture, no doubt.

"nearly impenetrable language"

That's an exaggeration. Regardless of what we might think about it, thousands of people manage to read substantial parts of it in the original English on a regular basis. Including teenagers!

My complaints about it - from a purely textual POV - are to do with characterization, plot etc.

"You can afford to sneer at people who don't understand the style and intent, since it's already familiar to you from long exposure within the church."

Someone who is dyslexic or has some other disability gets a pass here, but I'm not talking about them.

People expect everything to be handed to them on a plate. Simple films. Simple music. Simple art. They end up with simple minds as a result, and are hoodwinked regularly by people who wish to control and influence them. (Insert joke about eighties pop groups here.)

Now, whether the BoM is *worth* reading is another question.

The first time I read the BoM was as a young teenager. And I did manage to. I wasn't exposed to it as a small child because I didn't come up through primary, as my parents hadn't been active then. I found a lot of it a bit dull, to be honest, but as I say above, that was due more to content than style.

"You may find that an entertaining subject for literary analysis, but I hope you'd be honest enough to admit that as literature, it just doesn't work."

If you look at it as a novel, then no it doesn't work.

But if you look at it as an attempt at book of scripture, then it has had reasonable success. Some people have believed it, and it has inspired paintings, music and study. A lot of people have attempted to do a "Joseph Smith" with much less success.

The truth is that LDS wouldn't exist at all if the BoM was completely unsuccessful. The "cornerstone of our religion" and all that. We can rip the thing apart on historical grounds etc, but we can't deny that at least some people have fallen for it.

If the BoM had completely failed then we wouldn't even have this group!

Myself, I don't see the point in changing the language. I believe someone out there has already done so - it's probably online. If we want to debunk it, it's pointless to change it. If we want to prove it's plagiarized then changing that will obscure that.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 03:01PM

Jordan Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------


> We should not pander to low intelligence and bad
> education in nearly any area of society.


My hat is off to you. I had thought Ziller was the master of irony!

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Jordan ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 04:37PM

Lot's Wife Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Jordan Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
>
>
> > We should not pander to low intelligence and
> bad
> > education in nearly any area of society.
>
>
> My hat is off to you. I had thought Ziller was
> the master of irony!

If people struggle to read the BoM's style, how will they manage to read other material which is of relevance to them? It's a lot easier to read than legal language, certain company reports, or academic journals etc, that's for sure. Yet these are the kinds of things that we need to be able to understand on a (semi-)regular basis.

It's not as if the BoM is top of my personal list of reading suggestions, but do we have to pander to lazy people in every walk of life? If you don't exercise your reading "muscles" then they go into decline, or perhaps don't develop at all.

I understand some people are dyslexic etc, but they will still struggle with it even if the style is changed. I suppose a graphic novel might work, but that would be a new literary creation.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 06:12PM

Even Mormons tend to butcher Elizabethan English. Everyone else who finds it confusing and archaic may not be lazy. They may just think it is a complete waste of their time. They are right. I ignore the finer points of kabuki for the exact same reason.

Jordan's defense of the literary integrity of the BoM is, IMO, energetic and bizarre. I don't care if altering it would change the original author's intent. That intent was presumably fraud.

I imagine within fifty years the thees and thous will be changed. Actually, I strongly suspect the BoM will be de-emphasized in the future Mormon Church. It's simply too racist to salvage.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 06:27PM

wrong placement



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/18/2019 06:28PM by Brother Of Jerry.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Jordan ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 07:48PM

Brother Of Jerry Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Even Mormons tend to butcher Elizabethan English.

You're right, they do!

> Everyone else who finds it confusing and archaic
> may not be lazy.

Archaic, yes. But then you have something like Jacob 5 - that long story about the trees and the grafting - and no amount of modernization or simplified language is going to fix it.

(I once read a chapter a day of the BoM and that Jacob 5 is the most memorable one, because it is by far the longest!)

> They may just think it is a
> complete waste of their time. They are right.

Not our problem.

But if they're going to read it, they should read much as intended. (Yes, I'm aware it's been altered, which I disagree with but it's not been entirely rewritten.)

> Jordan's defense of the literary integrity of the
> BoM is, IMO, energetic and bizarre.
> I don't care
> if altering it would change the original author's
> intent. That intent was presumably fraud.

I would say the same about most books if they are written in English. I think it is what it is, and once you change it enough, it becomes something else. It's a bit hard to summarize why I think that here.

There are some really bad novels out there, and in some cases, a minor fix or two might actually save them. But unless the author does it, you're tampering with their intended work. If you're turning it into a film script, then some changes can be made, because that's a new creation (that was the main problem with that BoM adaptation funnily enough - they stuck too close to the book.)

Here's a quote from Milton (the first that came up after I looked some up online):

"He that studieth revenge keepeth his own wounds green, which otherwise would heal and do well"

The only archaic word here is "keepeth". "Green" maybe too. But even that is easy to work out. The syntax is very formal though.

How would you rewrite this? "If you want to keep the spirit of revenge alive, then keep your wounds infected, Because if they heal, then you'll lost that urge." See - it's something completely different.


> I imagine within fifty years the thees and thous
> will be changed. Actually, I strongly suspect the
> BoM will be de-emphasized in the future Mormon
> Church.

Not unlikely, but it's a unique selling point, right? I've always thought the Book of Abraham is the most likely candidate to be de-emphasized. I think that's already happened. There are several reasons for that.

The RLDS went down that road and they have ended up as just another church. The LDS rely on there being a difference between them and other churches - it produces tithing, supports the leadership structure, and is a foundation story.

> It's simply too racist to salvage.

The BoA is worse for that, TBH. My objection is more towards content than style, as I've said. The BoM is heavily woven into LDS culture. Anyone who's come into casual contact with the church even for a short while has been exposed to it. As you know, it's a big deal for someone to try and read it cover to cover, and they're encouraged to do so.

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Posted by: nolongerangry ( )
Date: May 15, 2019 08:14PM

Bruce should write a tell all book. I would buy it.

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: May 17, 2019 11:42AM


Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: babyloncansuckit ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 09:56AM

Aren’t you glad that they didn’t take you seriously?

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Bruce R. McDonkie ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 05:14PM

Had they "taken me seriously" then people who need help, would have gotten some. Such as the homeless Afrikaner families in South Africa. Such as homeless people (not all are addicts, not all are drunks, not all are crazy, some are just unlucky).

Most of my ideas would, in fact, helped the Church's missionaries. I was a missionaries. I did NOT like the fact that our Discussions did not work, our methods did not work. We knocked on doors all day long in the hot sun, with no results. Gota be a better way.

The Church leaders, will keep paying millions to New York City PR firms who take the millions and then say "Just drop the name Mormon and all we be well". And Church leaders will continue to spend BILLIONS on shopping malls, and high-rises and wealthy retirement communities in Florida, instead of the poor Mormon families in Latin America who can't send their children to school, because they can't afford two sets each of clean school uniforms and all the books. While, at the same time, Mission Presidents and Church leaders will continue to "blame the members" and the missionaries for "being lazy" and that is why the Church is shrinking. So, no, NOT glad.


babyloncansuckit Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Aren’t you glad that they didn’t take you
> seriously?

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Posted by: babyloncansuckit ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 10:20PM

After all this time, you still love the church. Hats off to your optimism. That’s awesome, but I don’t believe the church can be or should be reformed. It deserves to reap what it has sown.

The desert is where bad ideologies go to die. God may have underestimated BY on that one. You’d think he’d have learned his lesson with the Levites.

The church isn’t even a real church anymore, nor does it try to be. It’s a real estate empire using a sham religion as a tax shelter. It’s so obvious that they don’t even believe their own religion. Their faith is in the arm of the flesh. Charity is long gone. The church you loved is dead. May it rest in peace.

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Posted by: Bruce R. McDonkie ( )
Date: May 19, 2019 04:30AM

Actually, I never loved the Church. I found Sunday services to be beyond boring. I found the "Saints" to be anything but "saintly". I found Mormons to be, mostly, hypocritical wind-bag double-thinking/double-speakers of the worst possible kind. Some exceptions, but not many at all.

I joined the Church mainly because I was an outcast, always have been. And, I was an outcast/pariah as an active Mormon as well. All my life I've attracted shunning and bullies (socio-paths), like all men and women with Autism do, and Mormonism was not exception. Among the Mormons "nothing" changed, and, in some ways, it got worse.

I went to Church on Sunday because, like frozen veggies, I thought eating that crap would do me some good. Also, I thought I was doing some sort of Divine Duty. I never liked it. Looking back, I always hated it. The only thing I liked about the Mormon Church was the singing of hymns, because they DID "uplift my soul" and put me in a good mood. Then I'd have to sit through another two hours and a half of fingernails on a chalk board, which would ruin my mood. Boring UNinspired talks. Same things said in Sunday School and Priesthood, week after week. Same damn things. And if not the SAME damn thing, then someone would say something STUPID as Hell, like the Lost Tribes were hiding at the North Pole, or that in the Millennium we'd all live in Temple and just do Endowments for the Dead all day long, with maybe Sunday mornings off to attend Church! How'd you like that? When I heard that, I almost cried. NOT from joy!

I saw Church on Sunday as BAD medicine. Horribly tasting, but, I "had" to shallow it, over and over again. The Church made me more depressed. Mormons made me even MORE depressed. The Socio-paths among Mormons would "seek me out" for "seek and destroy" missions. All the time. Male and female. I just got further and further into a bottomless BLACK HOLE.

Yes, much happier post-Mormon. I have found the Truth Religion, and I now follow a True Prophet. You've never heard of either. And, I'm not permission on this Board to mention either. So, I won't. I never loved the Church. 90% of ex-Mormon men can say, "Well, I loved the Church as I kid" or "I found my beautiful wife in the Church" or "I loved it at BYU". Nope. Neither for me. I converted at 18. I never found a wife, just socio-paths hell-bent on my complete and total emotional destruction. Never attended any Church school. Went on a mission, which was 90% BAD. Don't get me started on that. Much happier as an Ex-Mormon.

I sent the Brethren "ideas" to make the Church a better place for all involved. The Church will continue. You all want to sink it like the Titanic. Well, its NOT gonna sink! It will continue on, for good or evil. I just prefer that the Church does some "good".



babyloncansuckit Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> After all this time, you still love the church.
> Hats off to your optimism. That’s awesome, but I
> don’t believe the church can be or should be
> reformed. It deserves to reap what it has sown.
>
> The desert is where bad ideologies go to die. God
> may have underestimated BY on that one. You’d
> think he’d have learned his lesson with the
> Levites.
>
> The church isn’t even a real church anymore, nor
> does it try to be. It’s a real estate empire
> using a sham religion as a tax shelter. It’s so
> obvious that they don’t even believe their own
> religion. Their faith is in the arm of the flesh.
> Charity is long gone. The church you loved is
> dead. May it rest in peace.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: nolongerangry ( )
Date: May 18, 2019 05:20PM

I don't think most people take you seriously, Bruce. You just don't seem serious enough and you still act like a TBM. Sorry to be blunt.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: Bruce R. McDonkie ( )
Date: May 19, 2019 02:53AM

I believe that Joseph Smith was a lying womanizer, con-man. I believe Brigham Young was a Robber-Baron-Mafia-Don (only not as noble as most of them). I believe that most Church leaders since Brigham Young have been "well intended" men, but duped. I think most of them "lie for the Lord". Gordon B. Hinckley (the Hinkster) was once of the worst of them. I think most Church leaders today (i.e. the top 15) are generally good and sincere men who think they are doing "The Wark of the Lard". I think Uchtdorf is a very sincere good man. I would not be surprised if he resigned the Apostleship soon. But he still thinks he can do some good.

Active Mormons: half are generally good people who "try" to do good. The other half of the Actives: the Children of Hell-fire.

I do NOT believe like the Evangelicals, that if you are a Mormon you're gonna burn/cry/scream for all eternity without mercy or reprieve. I do NOT believe like the Atheists, that "there is no God and no true Prophet" because Joseph Smith/Mormonism was a lie.
I have FOUND a true religion and a true Prophet, and I follow them.

I DO KNOW that the "Mormon" Church will continue, although its growth will be "nill" among white people. It will continue to grow among brown, black, and some yellow people. I DO believe that the Church "can" be better, and do better, and do "some good" for the world, but ONLY "if" it changed this and that. So, I've tried to "change" a few things, in my letters. That's all I did. And NO, I am NOT a TBM!!!!!

nolongerangry Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I don't think most people take you seriously,
> Bruce. You just don't seem serious enough and you
> still act like a TBM. Sorry to be blunt.

Options: ReplyQuote
Posted by: nolongerangry ( )
Date: May 19, 2019 05:59AM

Still not convinced.

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