This one is gonna be a little bit blunt, but I really like John Dehlin, and I think the LDS church is doing itself a great disservice but trying to smear his name and kick him from the church he clearly loves. All he has ever done is try to help struggling, confused, doubting, and isolated mormons feel less so, and I’m pretty mad that they are trying to stop him from doing what I believe is important work.
It’s been a full year since I’ve been to church. Naturally, I’ve been pondering the journey I’ve been on quite a lot lately, so the timing of this is interesting for me personally, although they are un-related, of course.
First of all, I could care less about Ordain Women. While I do understand it from a feminist quality perspective on some level, I don’t care because I don’t believe in the priesthood, so therefore, I don’t care if women get it or not.
On the other hand….
John Dehlin is one of the LDS figures that helped me survive my faith crisis without imploding. Without him I don’t know what would have happened. Probably something pretty bad. His podcast helped me. A LOT. He has faced “discipline” 3 times and always been exonerated. John Dehlin has done NOTHING different than what he was doing during the last 3 investigations, he says it himself in the video below. The difference this time is the timing. I refuse to believe it’s a coincidence that he is being summoned at the same time as the Kate Kelly, the founder of Ordain Women. Even though they are being summoned by local clergy, they were both summoned around the same time, under circumstances that are a little shady.
Hear about it for yourself. Watch this google+ hangout conducted by The Salt Lake Tribune.
This looks coordinated from higher up. If anyone can show me otherwise, I’d love to review the evidence. Basically, the message I am getting from this is, it’s ok to have doubts, but you better not talk about it! If John Dehlin is excommunicated – it will only confirm to me what I figured out about this time last year….the church doesn’t want people like me….people who ask hard and honest questions…..who want to live authentically, even if it means going against the grain. When I realized this for the first time a year ago I had to leave for my own mental health, because I couldn’t live with the guilt of being a doubter for ONE MORE DAY. I was miserable, swimming in a sea of believers that don’t want to ask the hard questions, don’t want to hear about mine, and don’t want to consider that maybe, just maybe, the church and it’s associated doctrines aren’t perfect.
As Kate says in this video, for people that go to church every week and hear things that align with their paradigm of thinking, going to church is a piece of cake, a walk in the park! These are the people who love going to church. But, for those of us with questions, it is extremely difficult to go week after week, hearing things constantly that don’t feel right to us. Kate and John have both managed to stay active for years despite having strong feelings that things the church teaches don’t add up in their minds. They both have pretty different questions/suggestions about what needs to change, Kate – being the strong feminist and demanding equal roles, and John – begging for answers regarding the questionably historicity of the Book of Mormon and many other historical issues, as well as advocating for LGBTQ rights. No matter what the question or doubt is, if it doesn’t line up with current teachings, you are going to be uncomfortable in church on some level. For me it was unbearable. These two have remained active despite this discomfort, and I applaud them, that is a really hard thing to do, and it takes a lot of faith, really a lot.
These two must really love the church to have stuck with it all this time. They are more committed mormons that I will ever be, and yet they are the ones being called to court.
These two people genuinely LOVE the church. I know I can’t say the same. So, if anyone deserves to be summoned, it’s probably me, not them. Just a thought…..
All John is guilty of is being an honest and authentic inquirer and SAVER OF LIVES…
I wish him the best of luck. He is made of steel in my opinion. I know I sure couldn’t do what he is doing.
I try not to dwell on my departure from the church, but every once in a while….I have to talk about it.
To my family, I love you, these are my opinions, and what I see happening with the church does not reflect at all on what I think or feel about any of you. Just because I didn’t feel welcome in church doesn’t mean I don’t feel welcome at home, because I do. Thank you for that.
Now, I’m gonna get back to my craft room, finish a gift for my Dad, who I love dearly, despite everything, and work on another Youtube video, because that is what brings me happiness right now more than anything else.