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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 15, 2020 12:16PM

When my kids starting going on missions I hoped that something might happen to help them lose their testimonies. I mean mine was in a small bunch of islands off the cost of Northern Africa and I walked and walked and knocked and knocked till my head and feet hurt.

But today there is so much service involved that my kids write about it all the time. Hours upon hours of it each week. And while I'm grateful that is what they are doing it saddens me that the morg woke up to this being a good conversion tactic for kids.

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Posted by: GNPE ( )
Date: September 15, 2020 12:54PM

EB:

please sketch us some thoughts about your mission experiences & the islands!! Did U travel by boat among (between?) them?

<I definitely need grammar coaching & remediation from time to time, ha ha)

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 16, 2020 12:36PM

Well, my mission is no more. It was The Spain, Las Palmas Mission.

I took a ferry, a hydrofoil, and a twin prop plane when I traveled between the islands. I was on Gran Canaria and travelled by hydrofoil to Tenerife and we had to stop for awhile between these islands after hitting a whale.

I was in the government housing area first, then a remote town close to Mas Palomas which is the big tourist area. It was here I served with a guy I went to high school with and partied with. It was strange. He was a jock and I a former stoner.

But one of the most trying times was when I was placed with a guy who I had lived next to in my first area. I was attracted to him and I was terrified I would play around with him and so his former companion who I had become really good friends with in my first area arranged an emergency transfer for me to go be with him as he was leaving the office.

My friend had hated this guy and so thought that my dislike in being his companion was the reason I wanted out.

My mother had told me that if I came home dishonorably I would be homeless again. I was petrified of being homeless again.

But the islands were wonderful. I would love to go back to them. They are a gay mecca so that would be hard to deal with not being a missionary anymore. My wife knows my sexual orientations.

Beautiful desert islands. The best sunset I've ever seen was a day before a Sahara sandstorm blew in. It was the deepest purple filling the sky and gradually deepening into an almost neon spectrum down to rust red. The people were a very eclectic mix from all over the place and they were very kind of us somewhat unappreciative young North, Central Americans and mainland Spaniards. It was a relatively poor place dependent upon tourism.

But what a place. Not many interested in Mormonism, though there was a rumor that one of the most remote islands had "Mormonones" on it. These were supposedly polygamist locals who got Book of Mormon copies and practiced polgyamy. I don't know if it was true.

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Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 04:52PM

I visited Tenerife a few years ago, not really knowing what to expect. I was totally stunned at the beauty of the city and island. I took the tram up to Laguna, and there were two Mormon missionaries standing next to me. It was a Sunday afternoon. They were speaking English to each other. One was from Idaho. I didn't catch much else from their conversation, and I didn't bother to take advantage of an exMo "missionary moment". :)

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 18, 2020 02:22PM

Wow. The coincidence is powerful. At the height of my old mission there were barely over 100 missionaries. I doubt with The Sevilla Mission taking the islands back there would be even half that number?


I hiked Teide. I hiked through the night and saw the sun rise atop it January 1st 1992.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teide

I never took the tram/train in Santa Cruz.

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Posted by: cludgie ( )
Date: September 15, 2020 03:10PM

They're both simultaneously less and more difficult than in the 60's - 70's. Now they aren't expected to work as much, many of them having rules to be home by 9pm, or get up as early. So that's fewer hours during the day to be pounding the pavement looking for marks. But now the missionaries have to live almost cut off and secretly from their parents and loved ones. On my mission, we could call home whenever we wanted, as long as we could gin up the money to place the very long distance call, and that was a pretty good disincentive. We could stay out to all hours so long as we were doing our job. Our mail was sent directly from and directly to the apartment where we lived. Health-wise, we were well looked after. Many of us were on 2 1/2 year missions; I was called for 2 1/2 years, but only had to serve 2 due to the last-minute inclusion of Italian at the mission home. Still, many out there had a very long haul, some spending 3 years in the military, followed by 2 1/2 years of missionary work.

But I'd bet anyone, anywhere, that when it comes to satisfaction and ease of serving a mission, it has not gotten better, but far worse.

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 16, 2020 12:39PM

cludgie Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> But I'd bet anyone, anywhere, that when it comes
> to satisfaction and ease of serving a mission, it
> has not gotten better, but far worse.

I'd take that bet. I don't think I can claim anyone but my children have had a lot of satisfaction in serving, actually serving others.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 12:55AM

I would add, though, that in the good old days there were some horrible missions depending on the MPs and the GAs. We've all heard the tales of England during the baseball years, Spain and France during the polygamous interlude, and Japan during the Groberg years.

For the people who went through those experiences, missions were incredibly painful and ultimately damaging.

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 12:34PM

Lot's Wife Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> For the people who went through those experiences,
> missions were incredibly painful and ultimately
> damaging.

From what I've read here over the years they were abusive. Mission presidents and visiting General Authorities actually abusing missionaries emotionally and verbally.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 01:44PM

Not just that.

In some cases the MPs set up systems of management and operation that violated virtually every principle of the gospel. It was far worse than just verbal abuse and it broke a lot of missionaries.

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Posted by: Leaving ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 02:31PM

I guess I was a lucky one. My MP was the younger Groberg (Joseph). He was a nice guy. Maybe that's why he's not a GA.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 02:36PM

I'll 'fess up. I have a couple of older relatives who were missionaries in Japan in the bad old days. The stories they have told are very disturbing. Modern missions may be frustrating, boring, but I doubt they are as destructive as the worst renegade missions from decades past.

If there is a good side to Correlation, it would be the curtailment of the autonomy that used to allow renegade MPs to do whatever they wanted.

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Posted by: Anon for this ( )
Date: September 18, 2020 01:47PM

Frank Moscon
John (johan) Langeland

There was also a mission president who was in the Hitler Youth, and SS and NAZI party. I heard him talk about being a communications officer in Normandy during D-Day. His story was written up by BYU history department.

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Posted by: Void K. Packer ( )
Date: September 18, 2020 08:42PM

The one you refer to at the end is Johan Lothar Flade. He 100% invariably called himself "John". He was my mission president. I earlier mentioned him a few posts below.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/18/2020 08:44PM by Void K. Packer.

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Posted by: thedesertrat1 ( )
Date: September 15, 2020 03:33PM

My experiences in Argentina in 1958 were somewhat the same

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: September 15, 2020 03:44PM

I take sufficient pride in my errancy, such that I believe I could screw up a mission no matter what rules were in place.

Faith can be very useful!!

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 16, 2020 12:42PM

On my mission we could only do service on preparation day and only with mission president approval. There were special service times that weren't on P-day but these were bigger than my companionships. Needless to say I didn't break the rules to help people very much. I wish I had.

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Posted by: ufotofu ( )
Date: September 18, 2020 01:25AM

That sounds like my kind of mission! Weed a made good companions.

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Posted by: Void K. Packer ( )
Date: September 15, 2020 09:28PM

Cludgie makes me feel young again. My mission (Germany, Frankfurt) was 78-80, long after 2 1/2 year foreign missions were a thing of the past. However,

My mission president was a Nazi. I don't mean metaphorically, I mean he was literally, no shit, a card carrying member of the NSDAP. Hitler Jugend, joined the SS the day he could (on 17th birthday).

I don't care how "hard" missions are today. They are not run by Nazis like mine was. That was hard.

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Posted by: Tyson Dunn ( )
Date: September 16, 2020 09:35AM

I mean, fine, the Church is a bunch of twits, and the Heber J. Grant picture recently posted here is pretty damning, but seriously what the hell.

His obituary sure glosses over his Hitlerjugend, SS, and NSDAP membership. Quote:

"Shortly after WWII, Dad elected to take his wife and young daughter and escape from East Germany in order to live and worship in freedom. Even as a prisoner of war, held captive in the United States, Dad knew this was where he wanted to live. Dad's military experience was profiled in a video produced by the LDS church, "Saints at War"."


Tyson

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Posted by: Void K. Packer ( )
Date: September 16, 2020 11:47PM

I had to look up Saints at War. I left in '92, so was unaware of it. There is so little on the movie that I don't know if the church produced it, or what their relationship was with the movie and book.

What I do know is the church had no problem "calling" an SS NCO Nazi to bishop, stake president and mission president. For all I know he had other "Priesthood leadership" gigs after that. I was so traumatized by my mission that I never again paid attention to anything related with it afterwards, even while I was still doing LDS. (and what an awful trip that was)

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Posted by: ufotofu ( )
Date: September 15, 2020 11:55PM

Elder Berry Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> When my kids starting going on missions I hoped
> that something might happen to help them lose
> their testimonies.

Or find them?

> ... the morg woke up to this being a good conversion tactic for kids.

Are you kidding? They didn't wake up to it, they INVENTED it (take your kids away from you so they can brainwash them).

Your kids didn't "start going" on missings. You must have encouraged, or allowed, right?...

The time to save them from missions is before missions. Once you send them on a mission it may be too late. They may never come back.

We have hope though. Always hope, and try...

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 16, 2020 12:45PM

ufotofu Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Or find them?

> Your kids didn't "start going" on missings. You
> must have encouraged, or allowed, right?...

What are you implying here about me?

And as for "allowing" it there are two parents involved in this if you don't know anything about me.

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Posted by: ufotofu ( )
Date: September 18, 2020 01:40AM

I know. I just wish parents could share with children the truth. But, two parents have two different truths. If only the truth was so easy to see! Aghhhh, I know.

I wasn't implying anything, just that maybe you can use their own scriptures to show them how wrong they are but that what would take an eternity, and we don't have that... Hmmm

All you can do is be you. That's what I have said all along (Followers generally don't understand or appreciate that. But they don't know much about leading or critical thinking though.).

I feel for you brother. I have love for you [Michael Franti & Spearhead] and hope for all things, including your children (family) finding [truth and light] TSCC has highly mislead them.

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 18, 2020 02:34PM

ufotofu Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I feel for you brother. I have love for you and
> hope for all things, including your children
> (family) finding TSCC has highly mislead them.

I made a very hard choice 15 years ago. I could let my children go to church or get a divorce. Some would say I made the wrong choice. I understand why they feel that way and you may feel that way as well. I respect it. For me I believe I made the right choice (not righteous.)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=41&v=A0fYKguHFcQ&feature=emb_logo

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Posted by: Nightingale ( )
Date: September 16, 2020 12:47PM

Encouraged missions? I doubt it, given EB's stated disbelief in Mormonism for years now. Allowed missions? This is a tricky one in part member families. Too, much depends on when a person decides to leave the Mormon Church and what the family dynamics are. I doubt it's easy for a non-believing spouse to exert total control over a member spouse. Unless they want to blow up their family and lose all influence. Often the gentler approach reaps greater benefit.

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 16, 2020 01:33PM

Thank you Nighty! I'm bisexual and in a part-member family. I'm not easily reduced to "us" and "them" so I'm easily confused with "them" all the time. And the pain in telling my kids that I will never come around is difficult. I've never supported their beliefs, just them. They still want to have something to do with me so there is that. Take that Joe&Co and your horrible family "religion."

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 12:52AM

That you still have those relationships is absolutely wonderful and speaks highly of your family as well as you (although we already knew the latter).

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 18, 2020 02:39PM

They definitely aren't your typical Mormons. For starters they've known the unsavory church history for most of their lives. I have hopes that one of my daughters will "see the darkness" and leave the church. My older brother did and it has been wonderful. No careening off into drugs and sinning. He likes herbal teas. He has lived with a girlfriend for awhile. Those are what losing his testimony, his wife and the respect of one of his children has done to him since leaving the church.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: September 18, 2020 02:55PM

We've seen the other pattern so often: person realizes the truth, family falls apart, others leave later but the relationships are already ruined.

What you are doing is often a much better strategy. You hold the family together and let time and Google do their work. When the others leave the church, they already have you and the support network you represent. Meanwhile some TBMs stay TBMs and you still have the relationships.

I admire that you prioritize people. That is the opposite of the usual Mormon approach.

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Posted by: Levi ( )
Date: September 16, 2020 12:40PM

It's completely different, agreed.

Then: very strict dress code, phone calls TWICE a year - once on mother's day, once on xmas, one letter per week, proselytizing at all times unless English Class (i was in japan), we were actually instructed by the MP to NOT TEACH young women (we had no sister mishies in that district at all, but if it's true, then every person needs it), our service was to be limited as it cut in on our streeting/housing time.

NOW: The sisters can wear pants, the guys can wear blue shirts, skip the ties, you can call or email whenever you wish, focus is on service.

I would have loved my mission had those things been different. Imagine waking up and all you had to do was go help people instead of trying to bullshit them on jesus.

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Posted by: ufotofu ( )
Date: September 18, 2020 01:48AM

Levi Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It's completely different, agreed.
>
>
> ... Imagine waking up and all you had to do was go help people instead of trying to bullshit them on jesus.

Um..........

You mean BS them on Joseph's (BS) Myth? Or HELP PEOPLE find TSCC?

Remember, this is mormonism.

Jesus is rehearsing.

This is TCoJSoLDS

Joseph's Jesus' replacement.
Or, he thinks he was.

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Posted by: messygoop ( )
Date: September 16, 2020 01:27PM


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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 16, 2020 01:35PM

Not to mention the sexism my kids report. That hasn't changed in the least even with "sister leaders."

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 12:51AM

It can't change. No matter what titles the women are given, the priesthood power is still a male monopoly.

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 12:36PM

Lot's Wife Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It can't change.

Not even with "continuing revelation" that can accept Black people and homosexuals as long as they accept the sexism.

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 04:32PM

If a Laurel can join the Army and by her 21st birthday pass the Green Beret qualification school, she should be given the priesthood.

Cuz I don't think that generic 12-year-old newly minted deacon has more power in his little pinkie (why this isn't considered scatological is beyond me!!) than she does in her whole Green Beret body.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 04:39PM

Get the gutter out of your mind!

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 04:47PM

elderolddog Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> If a Laurel can join the Army and by her 21st
> birthday pass

Check out this pass.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NM4L-igeoBo

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Posted by: ufotofu ( )
Date: September 18, 2020 01:50AM

Elder Berry Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Not to mention the sexism my kids report. That
> hasn't changed in the least even with "sister
> leaders."

You mean the sister leaders are being brother browbeaters? Man-eaters? Or Twisted Sisters?

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 18, 2020 02:41PM

Actually the opposite. It seems many sisters don't talk much to the elders and if they do like my youngest they are accused of flirting.

But the elders still think they are in charge of the sisters and treat them like children.

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Posted by: ufotofu ( )
Date: September 19, 2020 01:37AM

Elder Berry Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Actually the opposite. It seems many sisters don't
> talk much to the elders and if they do like my
> youngest they are accused of flirting.
>

Yeah, it's got to be a catch-22 especially if they don't see their spouse in these men. Talk to them and you are automatically flirting... No Sexual Conduct-

> But the elders still think they are in charge of
> the sisters and treat them like children.

Ego.

The men probably are taught that they are closer to God. Even the girls might believe it.

Women should have never been called on 'emissions'. Just something nice to look at on the missions? Poor girls

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 04:47PM

I am coming up on my 53rd mission-release anniversary. I don't recall the exact date, but it's in the next 10 days.

Not much has happened since then...

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 04:51PM

elderolddog Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I am coming up on my 53rd mission-release
> anniversary.

That sounds like you have been on 53 missions and are coming on the year anniversary of your last release. But thanks for the hyphen. They are magical.

I would have worded it thusly - I am coming up on my 53rd anniversary of being released from my mission.

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 04:52PM

elderolddog Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Not much has happened since then...

I did. I'm coming up on my 50th anniversary of breathing.

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: September 17, 2020 04:56PM

Congrats! How's the ponytail doing?

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 18, 2020 02:29PM

It is getting there. It is about 2 inches past the base of my neck. Ironically, we had four sister missionaries over here last night and I got the usual drill about what I think of the church - that it is false.

Their inquisitor and the most forward sister asked me a bunch of questions. She started is innocently enough asking everyone whether they would rather have 11 fingers replacing their tongue with a finger or 11 tongues replace their fingers with tongues. I said 11 fingers.

Then she asked me specifically if I would rather go to church on Sunday or have all my hair cut off. I picked the latter.

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Posted by: ufotofu ( )
Date: September 19, 2020 02:04AM

Elder Berry Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> ... I got the
> usual drill about what I think of the church - that it is false.
>

> Their inquisitor and the most forward sister asked
> me a bunch of questions. She started is innocently
> enough asking everyone whether they would rather
> have 11 fingers replacing their tongue with a
> finger or 11 tongues replace their fingers with
> tongues. I said 11 fingers.
>

What kind of questions are these? Oh yeah, TRICK questions.

> Then she asked me specifically if I would rather
> go to church on Sunday or have all my hair cut
> off. I picked the latter.

Why does she ask you or think someone has got to choose between happiness and truth and a terrible institution they think is golden?

Was she attempting to single you out? I'd make sure she knew who was single, and why.

Did she began asking everyone silly questions and then try to frame you as an lost sheep? Little Bo Peep!

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 19, 2020 04:08PM

ufotofu Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Was she attempting to single you out?

Yes, but I am ok with that. I think I can hold my own with 4 20 year olds trying to return me to their fold and then when they realize the futility of it all just pester me with questions.

If I can say something that may in their future spark something I'm game. They are the sheep wandering into my wolf's den.

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Posted by: ufotofu ( )
Date: September 18, 2020 04:50PM

Even an IMPOSITION.

The LDS 'missing fairy' [;)] system is really just the 'church's' mission. It has much less, even little to nothing, to do with the individual but above all to do with the overall Mormon "look" or (perceived) image: clean professional innocents in suits as opposed to capable, practical, empathetic (not just pathetic),
visionary leaders, knowledgeable, trustworthy, or truthful religious seekers, believers or practicers, or even saintly, wise, or select or choice Christ followers. Just Mormon. That's all. Cancel the ball!

It doesn't roll uphill. Only snowballing the people. They Got To seek higher ground. Especially the youth!

These otherwise mentally growth-worthy, spiritually hungry, emotionally excited young individuals are taken away from their families, and any would-be ACTUAL influence of truth & light, in their freedom to "Choose The Right" {and not the left?} - which is really the wrong - (saying one thing and doing another) for themselves, RATHER THAN having "FREE AGENCY" (which is not free, or agency, At All) Forced Upon Them, not even having the option to choose… having your youth, and YOUR CHOICES taking away, in essence, and most/ all(?) of your rights and abilities to feel or express your natural feelings, to speak (without fear of retribution, punishment or damnation) or to move about, travel, or explore, to express yourself, or even choose how and when to dress - and undress - yourself, and even Be Addressed… and what to wear under your dress, and then having wholly secret (holy SHIfT) places you get undressed..., and be captivated, ON YOUR OWN DIME, and subjected to sell a perpetuated blank of a "religion", operating like a cult, which doesn't speak the truth - about itself, Or You - and hopes you don't find it. Or follow yourself. Your nature. Your conscious.

That Joseph Smith narrative is more likely to take them away from, than show them, wisdom, sainthood, or enlightenment. They'd like to throw him under the wagon. Say God appeared to David Copperfield and then disappeared (without a trace, of course).

Missionaries are Mormonism's Taveling Salesmen (& Changing, Fruity Billboards of Misdirection and Goffyness) & Women Of The Day. All work and no play. Now, ALL play and NO work. Shoes probably last longer. Out of shape population-

The lackluster LDS 'clusterflunk' of a missionary 'program' is wholly predicated on the assumption that THE WORLD doesn't Know The Truth about the mormons, BUT, they do. Even Mormons are learning.

It also assumes these missionaries won't have revelations, insights, sparks of inquiry… it just says, Come Home and Fight The Family - and ALL MORMONS - if you come off your trap early.

I never served. I never deserved. It didn't deserve me (it may have disserved me, and many/ all others). I deserved better. We all do. Nobody deserves to be a Mormon. Yet^

Maybe some, when they are dead. Mormonism Is Dead Drinking & Dunking.

Basketball. Donuts.
The crowd goes Nuts!

POPCORN
PEANUTS

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: September 19, 2020 04:12PM

ufotofu Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It also assumes these missionaries won't have
> revelations, insights, sparks of inquiry… it
> just says, Come Home and Fight The Family - and
> ALL MORMONS - if you come off your trap early.

A ward member my youngest's age came home early. Before she left on her mission she reached out to him and was very supportive of him coming home early. He told her she was the only one that said anything about it to him. He told her he appreciated it. This is how my kids are. They aren't afraid to deal with some of the stupid uncomfortable aspects of their fellow Mormons. They have paid on and off their missions for their candor. Unfortunately they can't get offended out of the church.

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