Sunday in Outer Blogness: Switzerland Day edition!!

Yes, today is the Swiss National Holiday! It’s one of the most important holidays we celebrate here in Zürich, along with Knabenschiessen (“boys shooting”) and Sechseläuten (the day we set a giant fake snowman on fire) (yes those are real holidays). Today is the day we honor the defensive pact made among the first three cantons of Switzerland back in 1291. Of course nobody knows what precise date the pact was made on, so people just picked a convenient date to celebrate (kind of like Christmas!).

Anyway, since I’d set myself a goal to finish drawing pages 15 and 16 of my comic book by the end of last week — and I was really on a roll with my drawing yesterday (with only a few breaks to chase Pokémon with my son) — I decided to put off SiOB for today, it being a holiday and all. Actually page 16 is still not quite done but so close! But I figured I’d better get down to business on SiOB or it would never get done. So here’s your Mormon news for this week!!

This week’s top Mormon news story is about the good guys being bad. Utah Planned Parenthood decided to print up some condoms with the famous “CTR” shield for distribution at the Sunstone Symposium, and their Facebook post about is kinda went viral. I’ve read some excuses (essentially that people use that symbol unofficially all the time and people aren’t going to mistake them for being actually promoted by the CoJCoL-dS), but I don’t think very highly of these excuses. It was an inappropriate use of someone else’s copyrighted logo. Planned Parenthood shouldn’t be handing over the moral high ground. I support their decision not to distribute the condoms, and I hope they’ll simply apologize for the oversight (if they haven’t already).

In the department of the CoJCoL-dS shooting itself in the foot, we have this:

It turns out that the entire 2016 year of Visiting Teaching messages were not drafted or chosen by the Relief Society Presidency but were picked for them and written by the all male correlation committee. As you might suspect, the messages often are mostly men lecturing women on things such as to how to suffer joyfully.

And this decision has led to pretty much the dumbest mistake groupthink can make — they decided to use the Visiting Teaching message to have women tell each other the most odious, enraging-to-women story in recent General Conference memory. My guess is that either some mole in the Church Office Building is actively out to inspire women to leave the church or the dudes in the COB are just morons. You guessed it — it’s the ironing story. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, allow me to thank the COB for reminding us all of what the CoJCoL-dS really thinks of women. Please see this earlier discussion thread about it.

In other Mormon discussions LDS missionaries have been relocated from Turkey to Berlin, ExmoTales explained Mormon Trek, and houdin1 provided a top-notch set of tips for non-believers who are currently enrolled at BYU.

One of the positive points of this year’s US election horror show has been the fact that Utah — usually the reddest of the red states — is a battleground state this time around because Mormons generally don’t like Trump. Which I think is kind of awesome. Jeff Swift discussed some possible reasons why. My personal guess is that the Mormons find him vulgar, particularly his use of hottest-but-not-modest women.

There are a lot of great podcasts to choose from this week including new research on arousal discussed by Mormon sex therapist Dr. Jennifer Finlayson-Fife, an interview with science communicator Cara Santa Maria, Sage Turk’s new series on how to be an atheist without being an asshole (here’s an idea), and a discussion of Stephen Carter’s book on Mormon humor.

Speaking of books, you may have noticed the review I posted about the new book of scholarly essays on the Book of Mormon musical. Also Sarah Dunster posted a review of Amber Gilchrist’s Mormon-interest novel The Librarian Shoots a Gun.

In scripture study, we’re up to the Jesus part of the Book of Mormon, and we just got treated to the scene of an unspeakably awesome prayer, minus the actual text of the prayer:

What’s the purpose of mentioning this at all if the magnificent specifics are going to be completely glossed over? I mean, if Jesus’s prayer was so powerful that his audience was filled with such prodigious joy, isn’t that exactly the kind of thing the scriptures should preserve for our benefit?

And also, if “tongue cannot speak, neither can there be written by any man…so great and marvelous things as we both saw and heard Jesus speak,” I think it’s fair to ask what language did Jesus speak these things in and what words did he use. Because clearly the words exist, otherwise how could Jesus have spoken them?

And finally, there were a number of not-quite-Mormon-related personal stories related by Mormons (current or former): Jana finished a 60 Kilometer canoe trip, Alexis told a prequel story to her personal encounter with Pat Summitt, and Myrtlejoy told a rather squicky tale of something that happened at an exmo retreat, Oh, and a delicious dessert recipe from Froggie!

Sorry for the delay on this one, folks, happy reading and Happy Switzerland Day!!


C. L. Hanson is the friendly Swiss-French-American ExMormon atheist mom living in Switzerland! Follow me on mastadon at or see "letters from a broad" for further adventures!!

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