Tuesday, September 30, 2008

First Presidency Issues Letter on Political Participation

I must admit to an entertaining confusion when this was read over the pulpit last Sunday. For all those who read this outside of California, where every Sunday class and meeting is NOT dominated by Proposition 8, you may not see the humor, er...irony, um...just read it.

I have been actually considering participating in our ward efforts on Proposition 8. A comment was made in a recent Proposition 8 meeting I was suckered into attending under the guise of Stake Priesthood Leadership Meeting at 7am on a Sunday morning in which they encouraged members to participate and simply bring citizens the knowledge that a Proposition 8 exists and no influence one way or the other would be required. And I thought to myself: HEY, I CAN DO THAT!

Then I can follow the Prophet's encouragement to me to do all I can to help Prop 8 pass by simply helping to make others aware that it is even on the ballot. The Prop 8 zealots seem to think knowledge of it's existence on the ballot will encourage voters to come out and bring about it's passage. I happen to think that Constitutionally-minded citizens will recognize the absurdity of the bill and vote it down. And hey, they might even come to some of our meetings and become converted to the cause by all of the fear-based propaganda and hate speech!

Thank goodness I have finally reconciled the issue. I can follow the Prophet AND uphold the Constitution...except for all of those Prop 8 meetings in our non-profit, tax-exempt status church building. Oh wait, that was covered in the "legal loophole" section of training we got at Prop 8 boot camp...er...Priesthood Leadership.

Please vote on Proposition 8 on the upcoming November ballot. See, that wasn't so hard.

SALT LAKE CITY 22 September 2008 The following letter was issued by the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on September 11, 2008, to be read to Church congregations throughout the United States:

Political Participation, Voting, and the Political Neutrality of the Church

As citizens we have the privilege and duty of electing office holders and influencing public policy. Participation in the political process affects our communities and nation today and in the future.

Latter-day Saints as citizens are to seek out and then uphold leaders who will act with integrity and are wise, good, and honest. Principles compatible with the gospel may be found in various political parties.

Therefore, in this election year, we urge you to register to vote, to study the issues and candidates carefully and prayerfully, and then to vote for and actively support those you believe will most nearly carry out your ideas of good government.

The Church affirms its neutrality regarding political parties, platforms, and candidates. The Church also affirms its constitutional right of expression on political and social issues.

Sincerely yours,
Thomas S. Monson
Henry B. Eyring
Dieter F. Uchtdorf
The First Presidency


Nicole Shelby said...

i think it is fascinating (well, that's not the right word) that in one breath we are shown wards that have cancelled temple night and missionary efforts as a model to be followed. we are encouraged to cancel relief society activities and make prop 8 phone calls instead. and all of this over the pulpit.

the very next breath? "but remember, you can't make those phone calls in the church building! choose a home!"

also, i'd still like to know...how is prop 8 the gettysburg of our time? who is supposed to be the slaves and who are the slavers?

Scott H. said...

What the? I imagine from Nicole's comments that they are doing all that stuff...that's crazy. I think your stake is a little over the top and out of step with what they should be doing...do I sense some sarcasm from you two...?haha, anyways, the only thing we have had is a joint third hour of RS and Priesthood all about Prop 8, oh, and the Bishop personally calling for donations/participation, oh, and the high council rep calling for participation...no cancellation of meetings though yet, I guess we're not doing all we can do like your stake! hahaha...how do you feel about the Salt Lake Broadcast on the subject on Oct 8?

T.J. Shelby said...

Scott, I don't know. I'll have to wait until the broadcast to find out. I can't imagine it will be anything new though.

Oh and what Nicole mentioned is only the tip of the iceberg. We have bold faced lies being spread over the pulpit without corrective measures being enforced.

"If we don't follow the Prophet on Prop 8, can you imagine the State sanctioning gay marriage and forcing us to solemnize gay marriages in the temples?" That was merely hours after the very same individual and I had a conversation where I explained to him that this was a legal impossibility based upon the law as it was currently written. Yet he used his fear-inducing lies to play the emotion card anyway.

Jodi Jean said...

ugh .. they want you to make calls but say it's not an option to make from the church? i think that's ridiculous. i'm still getting harrassing phone calls (one even the day after i had finley while i was in the hospital) talk about frustrating!! rob has even talked about changing my phone number. i had to change my message (as i mention jocole, and if you google jocole i'm like the top websites ... UGH!)

if they expect you to participate, at least they should offer alternatives that wont put you in danger of being harrassed.

and i think it's INSANE that they are asking to cancel activities so you can participate. ridiculous. your stake really has gone over the top.

Heidi Maloy said...

Oh, to live in the quiet, naive, little bubble in Happy Valley, Utah... where at our church meeting tonight, not once was Prop 8 brought up... but everything (and I mean everything- teaching earth sciences, witch quilts, pole dancing and stripper videos, gay love scenes in movies, the tyrancy of martha stewart, and feministic views of princess stories, amid planning our city volleyball league team, values and ethics pertaining to movies and the media, christmas tree skirts, and organizing PTA committees) else was... but you have made me aware of Prop 8 being on the ballot, so you can consider yourself following the counsel of your priesthood leaders... hahahaha

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