Monday, February 8, 2010

Disclaimer #4

I don't think I have been clear enough yet. I have left the Mormon church and I don't see myself ever returning to it. I have feelings of hurt and sadness that sometimes manifest themselves as anger. It has been a traumatic experience to let go of a belief system that I lived my life by for 31 years. I did not make this decision lightly. I studied for over a year, initially trying to find information that could keep me believing but eventually the evidence was stacked against that pathway and I have had to forge another. I will say things in this blog that challenge the Mormon way of life. I am not attacking the members. I am challenging the religion. The Stake President (not the head honcho of Mormonism but certainly a big kahoona) has read my blog and I fully expect to be excommunicated sometime in the next few months.


  1. So resign first. Once you submit a letter of resignation, you are no longer a member of the church, and you are not subject to their judgments. If that's the way you're leaning (and it sounds like you are), it's a way to avoid the stigma of excommunication.

    A good resource is here:

    My own 'exit letter' is here:

    Let me know if you have any questions.

  2. I'm facing a similar dilemma myself, although I'm not sure if you or I have really said enough on our blogs to warrant excommunication... But that probably depends on who is reading it.

    For me, I'd view an excommunication as a nice way to walk away from the whole situation, and do so guilt free. It's not that I couldn't hack the truth, it's not that I didn't have what it takes to stay, it's that the Church didn't want me.

    Of course on the other hand, it would be nice to be the one taking the action. Kind of the "You can't fire me!!! I quit" type approach.

    I'm still torn between the two. I'm curious to see how they'd handle an excommunication, should they decide to kick me out, so I think right now, I'm leaning towards attending the "Council of Love" and then flipping the SP my resignation letter, right before the final verdict is announced.

    And yes... I have issues!!

  3. Hehe, you made me laugh Koda. I pictured the letter getting whipped out in a flourish, big pleased-as smile on your face :)

    Bishop dropped by tonight with a letter that reads:

    "The Bishopric is considering formal disciplinary action in your behalf, including the possibility of disfellowshipment or excommunication, because you are reported to have been in apostacy. (I think they spelt apostasy wrong?)

    You are invited to attend this disciplinary council to give your response and, if you wish, to provide witnesses and other evidence in your behalf. "

    I was out with my girlfriends at the time on a lovely beach walk so I didn't get to give him the resignation letter that I wrote and printed off today. I will send it by registered post tomorrow.

    Rockstar also got a letter but his was from the Stake. I guess a mere woman only needs her Bishop to sort her out, a man however, needs a big kahoona like Pres.

  4. The letters are pro forma, but the Clerk has the responsibility of typing them out - hence the spelling error.

    A Stake Disciplinary Council is convened if the member in question is a Melchizedek Priesthood holder (not merely male.)

    I know there's a fair amount of cynicism about disciplinary councils, but I also know our Bishop well enough to read that he genuinely cares about you - regardless of your relationship to the Church as an Institution.

    I hope you don't let your misgivings about the Church colour your perceptions of a man who really is one of the warmest and most genuinely empathetic people you could hope to know.

  5. Somehow I find it admirable that Cavalcanti ascribes only the best motives to people, no matter how self-serving or bureaucratic their actions may seem to those that haven't made their acquaintance. He's probably right. It's just ensuring the ideological purity of the membership, which is not at all sinister. Just business.

    I have to say, I openly blogged my disbelief for years, and I never got any of this. Wonder why. Can't say I'm jealous, but you both have my unswerving support.

  6. Thanks for pointing out the possible negative reading of my last comment Cavalcanti. I agree with you wholeheartedly about the character of our Bishop. The final paragraph in my letter that I wrote yesterday addresses him personally because through all of this he has been very kind and understanding. About 8 months ago he spent 3 hours speaking with Rockstar and I in our home and he surprised me by just how honest and loving he was. (Especially in contrast with a visit we received from someone a little higher up about a month or so later).

    I knew the letter was standard, Rockstars was very similar. I was wondering if the spelling was an American form. Sorry, it wasn't my intention to belittle Bishop about that.

    In fact due to the crash course that I have had in communication breakdown this week I decided last night that I will attend my disciplinary council tomorrow night to hand over the letter (I will also send a copy by registered post since I am currently discovering a very paranoid side to me) but mainly to assure Bishop in person that I do not hold any grudge against the membership, especially him, I am aggrieved with the religion and its founders.

    I agree Daniel, I have noticed over the last week or so while Cavalcanti has given me tremendous support and advice that I think he is very good at seeing the best in people. A most admirable trait :)

    I would like to see matters such as this dealt with in a more egalitarian way. I mean, I have been more outspoken that Rockstar, it's as though even in rebellion my efforts are seen as less important. Just a beef of mine I suppose, there's so much pressure on Priesthood holders to be the spiritual and financial heads of the home whereas the wife seems to be seen as fragile and in need of protection and lighter treatment.

    My best guess at the reactions to Rockstar and I is that I think some people put us up on a pedestal for them to look up to. We even modelled a family home evening with our children on the 5th Sunday in font of the Ward nearly a year ago now. We were the 'perfect Mormon family'. If this can happen to us it can happen to anyone and I think it has scared the heck out of people.

  7. However, that doesn't help to explain the difference in response to your departure. I'm sure it sent massive shockwaves! (I know I was blown away when I first heard).

  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

  9. (Sorry, typo in the previous comment.)

    Daniel: In the case of this particular Bishop, it isn't guesswork. He's a good guy who I've known since I was a kid, and he genuinely cares about Maureen.

    It probably is naive on my part, but I really do believe that most people have admirable intentions, most of the time. And while I'm here defending the moral integrity of Maureen's Church friends, I'm saying the exact same things about you, her and 'Rockstar' to other people in other conversations.

    Maureen: Thanks for the compliment. My apologies if my pontificating becomes irksome. You know you always have my moral support, even though I disagree with you about the Church.