As for being a stumbling block: ever since I began having questions about the church and the gospel, the things I see people mostly leaving the church for are (1) the church history mess left by our past leaders and (2) the way marginalized people are treated because they arenâ€™t conforming with orthodoxy. Whether this second group are people of color, LGBTQ+, feminists, or just people with questions; the unchristian, unwelcoming, unloving treatment these people receive have often led them to judge the Church by itâ€™s fruits (how itâ€™s members treat them).
I never once have seen a personâ€™s faith shaken by someone wearing pants or by an LGBT person participating in a congregation. Yet our inability to create and maintain an inclusive faith community, despite Elder Uchtdorfâ€™s best efforts, cause nonmembers not to join and cause current members to leave the flock. Isnâ€™t it about time to admit the biggest stumbling block to peopleâ€™s participation in our faith is our lack of inclusivity (ahem, #lgbtpolicy)?
On the positive side, this viral story of an elderly Mormon woman reaching out to her Muslim doctor will make you smile! Not to mention all of these awesome advantages you’ll experience when you leave the CoJCoL-dS.
In Mormon discussions, M* offers a venn diagram in which true and false overlap, do Mormons believe in witches?, Tour guides at the Beehive House are startlingly short on info about life at the Beehive House, Angelic racism, A faithful Mormon has made a serious attempt to translate Joseph Smith’s “caractors” document, people recognize the horribleness of Biblical teachings — if they think they’re reading them out of the Koran, and Mormion mishies are still teaching Mexicans that they’re “Lamanites”!!
WIn the popular press, women discussed some of the challenges of leaving the CoJCoL-dS:
Youâ€™d think it would be easier to tell your non-Mormon friends about leaving the church, but itâ€™s just painful in a different way. They treat us as if weâ€™ve made the obvious rational decision and finally come to our senses. They donâ€™t understand the pain of the decision, our torn loyalties, the complexities of faith.
If only the CoJCoL-dS would figure out that diversity in leadership leads to better decision-making.
In personal stories, we have a tale of what became of a beloved lesbian primary teacher 20 years ago, animal therapy for depression, Invictus Pilgrim continues his memoirs, a Mormon indie-pop star’s tale, how Mormon belief can lead to praying to Satan (older brothers can be helpful sometimes…), and the positive effects of letting your exmo light shine.
If you have your own tale to tell, note that Elna Baker is collecting stories related to abortions.
With Christmas coming up, you’ll need some gift suggestions for all the exmos on your Christmas list! Or this set, for the more NOM-ish Mormon on your list. Or this list, for any old Mormon. Oh, and if you need to plan some hymns for your “court of love”, look here. Mercifully, the fanciful belief in a “war on Christmas” is winding down.
This has been a great year, hasn’t it? Stay tuned — the X-Mormon of the Year and Brodie Awards are coming up soon!!! 😀