"The Internet is to Mormonism as the printing press was to Catholicism."- by The Man in Black at Recovery from Mormonism
This is the first time I have heard a general authority openly admit the church is currently losing a lot of its members. He even referred to it as an apostasy.
Church historian Elder Marlin K. Jensen attended a Q&A set up by Phil Barlow at Utah State University. He was asked the following question.
"Has the church seen the effects of Google on membership? It seems like the people who I talk to about church history are people who find out and leave quickly. Is the church aware of that problem? What about the people who are already leaving in droves?"
"The fifteen men really do know, and they really care. And they realize that maybe since Kirtland, we never have had a period of, I'll call it apostasy, like we're having right now; largely over these issues. We do have another initiative that we have called, "Answers to Gospel Questions". We are trying to figure out exactly what channels to deliver it in and exactly what format to put it in. But we want to have a place where people can go. We have hired someone that's in charge of search engine optimization. We realize that people get their information basically from Google. They don't come to LDS.org. If they get there, it's through Google. So, we are trying to create an offering that will address these issues and be available for the public at large and to the church leaders, because many of them don't have answers either. It can be very disappointing to church members. And, for people who are losing their faith, or who have lost it, we hope to regain to the church."
Here is the link: http://simplemormonspectator.blogspot.com/2012/01/i-recently-attended-q-and-session-at.html
Re: The Great Google Apostasy new
I find it fascinating that instead of facing the actual problem, they are trying to funnel people to "their"sites on the internet and control what people see. They have already tried to funnel people to lds.org via search engine optimization and through mormon.org but if someone that is even halfway internet savvy will search until they find their answers. I predict that the problem will only get worse for the church until they face the true issues, which are doctrinally and historically-based. - by dumpweed
For those of you ex-TBM's who discovered the truth about Mormonism recently, what took so long? I'm not trying to be offensive by the question; I just really want to know your stories and how, with the mountains of faith damaging evidence so readily available with the click of a button, you didn't discover the truth earlier?
We've had access to the internet for 15 years now and all it takes is to google "Mormon"and several websites critical to Mormonism (such as RFM) pop up right on the first page that exposes the fraud.
How did you avoid this information for so long? Were you aware of them, but literally too scared because you believed the devil was in possession of them? Were you so convinced that they did not contain any truth and simply had NO curiosity whatsoever to check them out?
I'm curious because I was an uber TBM in the 90's and was so confident of the truth of Mormonism that I wasn't afraid to read any "anti-Mormon"literature. Even though I didn't feel it was necessary or "worth"my time to read them, I was just curious to see what critics had to say. Consequently I painfully discovered the truth and eventually left. With the info so easily accessed online, how do most Mormons stay so oblivious to it?
Please, no speculations or opinions, I just want to hear from recent TBM's or those who, from first hand experience, know why their TBM acquaintances haven't discovered the truth online.
Too busy cleaning the church by TMT
Just avoided looking into it as that's what nearly all TBM's have been told to do. I believe that only a few TBM's will ever come to sites such as these, even if they have serious questions.
Your lack of fear from checking out anti-Mormon information is not something many TBM's have. Now others who know you will look upon you and say look how curiosity (and Satan) killed the cat.
But the other reason is, I have 3-4 hours of meeting on Sunday. Home teaching both coming over and me visiting a few families. I have additional Weeknight meetings at the church after work. Don't forget FHE on Monday nights. Oh I almost forgot they guilted me into cleaning the church this week. The EQ is helping a member move this weekend and a new neighbor in a couple weeks. I have to find a new dead relative in my family search so I can take the name to the Temple Friday night.
Much easier to go searching for Eye-Candy on the Internet (As I am sure most guys are doing) than to look for something that only confirms our doubts that we are a bunch of idiots following this crap.
Oh - you didn't want speculation or opinion! Actually I think I hit the nail right on the head!!
You hit the nail on the head - by newdrinker
I pretty much figured it out in the early days of the internet but then due to getting caught up in the busy clutches of the church and family criticisms I backed off for a few years and stayed away from "anti"sites.
It worked. I was so busy with my church life I didn't come back to sites like this for a long time.
Another thing that kept me in was a lack of self confidence. I mean, how could I be so arrogant to think I had it all figured out when there were so many good people who KNEW it was true? Must be my problem.
Remember the common theme in the endowment by adam
Is FEAR. Constant threatenings, and the image of Satan looming over you. I asked my dad how he makes sense of the clear statements of doctrine made in the Journal of Discourses. He says that Satan confuses us about those things.
So the answer is, I came on here several times, looked at what the critics had to say, and then just let it turn over in my mind.
But that does not make the fear or social pressure go away.
Mormon Curtain - by gone AWOL for good
Never even dawned on me to look. I'm not that computer savvy. I just figured out you-tube this year. Have no clue or desire to do facebook. I'm totally amazed at the stuff I look up nowadays and can find.
I like to read, I homeschooled my son for 7 yrs so used the Internet for that, got caught up on homeschooling sites.
Funny how it was the Internet that led me here, tho.
In 2008 we moved and decided to not go to church until we'd settled in. I have OCD so things now take longer to do than before I got this lovely illness.
I figured dh would go back when we'd settled in. And I'd show up enough to keep everyone from making me a project. Hated the church politics, betrayal, pettiness, abuse, etc. but still thought it was God's church. Just not good for my mental health. Believed enough to think some of it was true, i.e. three kingdoms, Book of Mormon, Jesus and Satan as our siblings, but not sure why God would make humans imperfect and then hate us for being so and send Jesus to be killed horrifically to save me so I'd then have to be indebted to him forever and do whatever he wanted.
Sounded gross and manipulative to me. However everyone else believed it so I figured it must be me.
I had so many doubts about christianity as a whole and Mormonism's patriarchy, exclusivity, sealing families together without knowing or asking if they WANT to be together after death, money grubbing, didn't like the Catholics building all those cathedrals while the poor people around them barely survived and now the Mormons were building huge lavish Conference Centers and then the City Creek Mall!
In my old ward I was just accepted and pretty much ignored, had a library calling and did my thing.
Easier to fade away up here as I had no friends or family here. Besides, we'd visited the ward before we decided to move here. Looks more like a branch, than a ward and they seemed VERY needy. They just swooped down on us and asked us when we were going to move in. HUH?
Scared the bejeebers out of me. Wasn't sure what they'd think of me- a almost non-believer.
Anyway, I was looking up ideas for where our charitable money would go that year since we weren't paying tithing. I looked up other sites and then, knowing the church had a humanitarian aid section you could donate to decided to look that up too.
Figured if the idea was good, at least I'd know for sure the money would get to the people.
One of the sites that came up was 'Mormon Curtain' with an article on humanitarian aid. I looked at it and was kind of confused when they talked about the lack of humanitarian aid the church gives. It didnt sound that nice to mormons!
I then read the disclaimer at the top, but since it didn't say 'anti' Mormon, just ex-Mormon, I figured it was ok to read. (Never trust the anti's. They are just liars and deceived by Satan I'd been taught) Just ideas and thots of people who used to be a Mormon.
How harmful is that? Especially when the topics sounded soo interesting: temple garments (Did anyone else hate wearing them or was it only me and my dh?) HAD to check out that thread! Other threads with interesting titles: horses in the Book of Mormon?, missionary experiences, could the Jaradites REALLY have spent a year in barges?
For someone like me who loves to read, and really values reading other's experiences this was a gold mine! One thread led to another to another to another. It also led to ex mormon.org as that's where some of the posts were coming from. More stuff to read, AND real forum posting too with current people and current experiences.
It didnt take long for me to realize that I'd been scammed and was never going back.
OH, btw, i did check the actual LDS humanitarian site out too, and liked what they did, but the ex-Mormon sites were way more interesting.
I avoided what I was told to avoid, and I only read approved materials. - by confused
In fact, other than stumbling across materials by accident, I never had any reason to look, nor did I have any desire to do so. That all changed in 2007 after watching 'The Mormons' on PBS. That was when I started looking. And looking. And looking...
FARMS/FAIR - by Toy Soldier
Yahoo: "Sad mormon help"- by Ben Ben
For me, many of my problems weren't "questions"about the church. Rather, the problem that originally brought me here was that I could not reconcile the church's actions/teachings with the gospel/Christ's example.
Eventually, when I was at my spiritual lowest, I stayed home from church one sunday and simply entered the search terms into Yahoo: "Sad mormon help"
The first result was a link with a two sentence summary of the page it linked to. It was a page of someone explaining the sadness that attending church brought to them.
I clicked on the link without checking the url. That was probably the most fortunate thing for me since I don't know if I would have clicked on the link if I saw the url as "exmormon.org."
Suddenly I was reading the story of some member whose bishop had put him through hell. I completely empathized with the abuse of power and authority.
I clicked the back button, and the next link took me to a similar looking page but I realized it was a different person with a different story. That was the moment that I looked at the URL. I was so shocked because how could these "EXmormons"understand what I was feeling? How could this "ANTI"site understand me without knowing me?
All of a sudden, I felt at home. People knew me and had gone through the same feelings I was experiencing. I was home.
It never occurred to me to look either - by CA girl
Why would it? I'd been LDS most of my life, done the Molly Mormon, BYU grad, serve a mission, marry an RM in the temple thing and was a wife and mother small kids.
I'd followed the path, never thought to stray. I was too busy trying to do all the right things and achieve all the right goals and serve in all the right callings, as if life were some sort of dot to dot and I had to hit all the "right"dots for life to make sense.
It wasn't that I was scared to look but why would I search out anything about my church on the Internet?
Sure, I was overworked, emotionally exhausted, fed up dealing with Mountain Mormons and feeling more and more like a fake and a liar. Sure I was angry at being forced into that Utah Mormon culture, coming from CA. Sure, I was completely confused by people (who didn't have half my education or money and weren't nearly as well-traveled) who treated me like I was somehow not as good as them because of their pioneer ancestors or family linage that traces back to the founders of some hick Utah town.
But none of that was the CHURCH's fault. How could it be - the church was true.
I only found out thanks to a lucky Internet search while researching a Primary sharing time and only listened because my wonderful nevermo dad taught me to think. Oh, and paid for my college education in history and journalism, which taught me to question relentlessly and thoroughly. I felt so stupid when the pieces began coming together that I never thought to question my CHURCH.
I never thought to apply my education to my religion and when I did POW! That was the end of that.
When you are completely brainwashed - by flyinghigh
When you're constantly told by your leaders to never read any books or info that is contrary to the Church and indeed it is a sin and you would be fighting against God if you do; what else can you do, when you are completely brainwashed as I was for so many years.
Recent circumstances occurred that drew me to all this info, and I was sickened and then angry with the obvious lies and how I had allowed myself and my family to be controlled all these years.
I am still in shock, feel betrayed and I'm still struggling with it. It's a long and painful process, but hopefully things will sort themselves out.
I cannot understand why so many people continue to put up with the relentless and increasing demands by this organisation. I suppose it is the fear of being rejected by God, your friends, becoming an apostate - all these things that the church teaches that would make you a person to be loathed.
I had an investigator post the following observations on my blog today. To aid my recovery, I write a blog about Mormonism.
Today, a user who said he had been investigating the church made the following observations which he posted to my blog:
1. Mormons worship Joseph Smith more than Jesus.
2. On the lds newsroom website, tales about the church's humanitarian adventures appear to be used for PR purposes only. It is very inappropriate for a christian organization to blow their own horn in such a blatant way.
3. It would appear that most of the funds donated to the church are used by the church to make more money for the church.
4. The investigator found it very odd that mormon leaders are given all kinds of awards such as Monson's "Caring Humanitarian"award or "Exemplary Manhood Award"- and then the church brags about it on their websites.
5. Toward its own members, the church appears to behave like a typical cult. Atypical for cults, however, is the way the mormons look for recognition from the outside world. However, the way they do this creates the impression of an organization that is run like a business for the purpose of making money.
For all my 34 years in the cult and 2 years out of it, I couldn't have made a more accurate analysis. Two elders are going to be very disappointed in the next few days that they lost a promising investigator.
Damn the Internet. It's full of porn and lies about the church...
I'm skeptical that the internet will ultimately mean the death of Mormonism. On a macro level, Mormonism is a sub-culture and institution that has proved itself adaptive and resilient.
On a micro level, however, I can say that the internet was a critical, maybe even paramount, part of my personal journey out of Mormonism. It wasn't so much about information. I had known for years that there were a lot of skeletons in the closet. It was more about connecting with people who had similar struggles and issues to my own. It was about having my assumptions challenged by the examples of others, and borrowing the courage to re-examine the experiences and feelings that were the basis for what I considered my conviction that it was all true.
Mormonism's thought control isn't just about preventing people from reading things that incriminate the church. It's just as much about isolating doubt. In Mormon culture, it's great to have people get up in front of the congregation and say they know it's all true. It's socially awkward to get up in front of the congregation and say you're really not sure about the whole thing. It's downright unacceptable to say that you suspect it's all a crock. Doubt is only tolerated so long as those suffering from it keep it to themselves.
When you're wondering if you're the only one who feels the way you do, they want you to think that the answer is YES.
The internet breaks down those walls of isolation more than anything that has ever hit Mormonism before. This Recovery from Mormonism site has helped so many of us connect and share experiences, and those interactions have launched many of us on our journeys toward the real world.
At the same time, there are many, many doubting Mormons out there who wouldn't touch RfM with a ten-foot pole. This site is most useful to people who are over that initial hump or who have somehow already put some emotional distance between themselves and their Mormon experience. The tone and content here can be a bit raw and for someone who is still culturally immersed in Mormonism, it can quickly trigger the must-stop-reading reflex.
Something like Facebook, however, is totally mainstream and embraced by Mormons everywhere. I've had a lot of fun with it, finding long lost cousins and friends I haven't seen since high school. Since Mormons make up a disproportionate percentage of my old friends and relatives, they make up a pretty high percentage of my Facebook friends. Facebook has a place where users can identify religious views if they so choose, and I have enjoyed being up-front and matter-of-fact about mine. My religious views are listed as Unitarian Universalist / Atheist / Pastafarian. My Facebook page includes pictures from my UU church and even a quotation from Barry Goldwater about how religion has no place in public policy. If any of my Mormon schoolmates or cousins are scandalized by that, they can always opt out of being my Facebook friends.
A few months ago, I connected with a friend who used to be in my ward in the early 1990's. I noticed that his religious views were listed as "To each his own, just keep it your own."That wasn't exactly a bold testimony of the Book of Mormon, so I took it as a strong clue that things had changed for him. I shot him a private message, and he responded that he indeed had concluded that Mormonism just isn't what it claims to be. We agreed to have a beer together the next time we meet.
Just this past week, I got a Facebook message from a friend who was also in my ward in the early 1990's. She confided in me that she no longer believes in the church or agrees with its agenda. She has one child on a mission, one at BYU and two at home. Her husband, who is in the bishopric, is the only one she had told about her disbelief. She is totally immersed in Mormon culture and has no idea what she is going to do. I can't do much other than share some thoughts about my own journey out and let her know that she is not alone.
Also this past week, I noticed one of my old high school friends' religious views on Facebook were listed as "Changing Daily."On a hunch, I shot him a message and jokingly reminded him that god is the same yesterday, today and forever. Then I asked him what was up with him and Mormonism these days, as I could guess that he wasn't 100% believing. He sent me a heartfelt email back telling me that his disbelief has really rocked the boat in his marriage and that he is going through the motions, keeping up appearances for the sake of family harmony. Again, there was little I could offer other than the ear of someone who gets it, but I'm happy to offer that.
People still in the middle of Mormonism have been raised to believe that there is only misery for those who leave the fold. We know that's simply not true. For many of us we can now see more beauty and profundity in life than we ever saw from within the Mormon bubble. Being happy and showing that for us, life is good, is perhaps the best message we can give. Living well really is the best revenge.
Thus spake Mujun.
I went to lunch last Friday at a fast food place by my work. The place was packed and the only available seat was next to two missionaries, who were enjoying their lunch. I asked if the seat next to them was taken, one of them said "No, go right ahead", to which I replied, "thank you Elder". Because I said Elder, they asked if I was a member. I said yes, which is true, I've been inactive for years but haven't resigned yet.
We then started a little small talk like where were they from, etc. I asked how the "work"was going here. They looked discouraged and said not good. No one's interesested in listening to them. And those few that they do teach a first discussion to, end up googling "Mormonism"after they leave, which as you can guess makes a second discussion all but impossible.
The senior companion, who only has a couple months left on his mission, then admits to me that he hasn't had a single baptism. I couldn't believe it. I kept saying things like "No way! Really zero baptisms?"Then I felt bad, because it seemed like I was rubbing it into this poor Elders face. I apologized and said that I wasn't trying to make him feel bad, I was just surprised that it was so tough here. I tried to make him feel better by saying if someone wants to join the church, any church, it all depends on that person and what's going on in that persons life, not how obedient the missionary is. I know he's probably getting the guilt trip layed on him by the MP and visiting GA's.
Ok, now to the point of my post. He did say that zero baptisms was fairly common in this mission and other US missions. BTW I live in the Portland, OR Mission. Now I don't know if he was saying that to make himself feel better or if it's true. I knew zero baptism missions were common in Europe but not in the US. I don't know if Portland is tougher then other areas of the country or not. Anyone know more about this? Is the US starting to get as bad a Europe for baptisms, or was this just a "bad missionary"?
P.S. I did eventually tell them I was inactive and I didn't believe in the church anymore, but they really didn't care. The junior comp wants to go to school to study what I'm doing for a career. So he just kept asking me all about the career and the schooling for it. This is what we actually talked about most of the time.
I talked with a senior missionary today and she said that missionary work in our area is - by anon
I talked with a senior missionary today. She and her dh are serving in our area (Midwest).
She told me that missionary work is very frustrating right now. She told me it is almost at a standstill. She said the young elders meet people and then they go to the internet and see all that ‘nasty anti-mormon’ stuff and then they aren’t interested anymore.
This lady is a very nice optimistic person. I was really surprised to hear how bad things are for the missionaries
I never saw a bigger personal library of church books than existed in my home. I loved them and treasured each one. And then, it was inevitable. Curiosity killed the cult. With a little help from the internet, I discovered the facts.
These days, people are more likely to study data and authentic mormon history on the internet, and be led to such books as:
1. An Insider's view of Mormon History
2. Mormon Enigma Emma Hale Smith
3. Loosing a Lost Tribe
4. Blood of The Prophets Brigham Yound and The Mountain Meadows Massacre
5. Mormon Hierarchy Origins of Power
6. Quest for The Gold Plates
7. Who Really Wrote The Book of Mormon
That's how it happened with me. it started with a harmless internet search. Once I read the top three books, I never bought another worthless church book again. Virtually all of my church related books, which were in sync with the official fairy tale version of history and doctrine, have now been dumped or given away, and I regret that I ever wasted so much energy and time with them.
Thank you Eric and Richard and Bob, Grant, Linda and valeen, Simon, Will, Michael, Stan, Wayne, Howard and Arthur. You took a great weight from my shoulders. You, introduced me to the facts.
You set me free. Kindest regards
I know there people who think the LDS Church is coated in Teflon® and will continue to roll on largely unaffected by the Internet, but I cannot agree with that view from my perspective down here in Australia. Besides, I love it when facts get in the way of a good story.
The LDS church in Australia and New Zealand has made an excellent start at entering a phase of apostasy unprecedented in this part of the world. The church Downunder has always grown at respectable rates since the 60's.
The following facts were taken from www.cumorah.com, a website run by TBM's (True Believing Mormons).
There are currently around 285 LDS congregations (wards and branches) in Australia. When I left the church 10 years ago the church was consistently adding around 10 congregations per year. During ALL of the last 8 years the church has added just THREE congregations. That is at least 77 congregations short of where they expected to be back in 1998 if growth had remained constant.
It is worse in New Zealand. There are around 200 congregations in NZ. Back in the late 1990s the church was consistently adding around 8 units a year. In the last 8 years the church has not added a single unit on balance. In fact it has lost 16 units, or 2 per year.
I don't think there has been a big drop in baptism rates in Australia. They have never been spectacular. The problem is retention of not only recent converts but people who have grown up in the church. People who have left recently have said that there is a big push to retain members and reach out to the less active
There is no doubt in my mind that the single most potent factor contributing to this apostasy is widespread access to the Internet. The abrupt stop in church growth comes immediately after the exponential rise in Internet access in Australia and NZ households.
The Internet Apostasy is happening Downunder.
New Zealand women are Googling instead of asking their priesthood leaders - by Danna
From experience (New Zealand), I think increased exposure to things Mormon in the media has set people Googling as well. Most of my family have been online for 8-10 years, but no one really got interested till they understood that there was information available.
Big Love has certainly increased the understanding that Utah Mormonism is way different to the experience here. We are halfway through the second season, and there have been some interesting reviews in the Dom Post and Herald (national daily paper). In a funny kind of way, the Ensign article on Mountain Meadow Massacre last year gave my Mum 'permission' to investigate the dodgy history. Then the re-wording of the Book of Mormon introduction and the DNA issue also aroused interest.
I have not been to church for years, but I understand that there have been a number of 'lessons' or discussions on the DNA problem - it is a really big issue for some Maori members, even those who were insisting they were Nephites. Mum has a head full of pretzels, but would make a FAIR apologist proud - she accepts everything said there as gospel and interprets for other members - spending quite a bit of time on it.
If she is spending so much time researching apologetics, she must be taking quite a few questions that the women are not asking the priesthood about.
Members in New Zealand are now inclined to question church doctrine by Kirikiriroa (former LDS Bishop
The LDS Church definitely on way-down in NZ. The Church College of New Zealand at Temple View (where NZ Temple located) closes its doors during 2009, after 51 years of existence. Such closure will have far reaching effects.
It amazes me that Church leaders in NZ don't realise this. More and more church members in NZ are now inclined to question church doctrine, practices, and history. I am a former Bishop and am now aware of many other church members in NZ who no longer follow like sheep, but are thinking for themselves.
Though church attendance is still strong on Sundays, belief isn't. More and more shop on Sundays, after church, attend at restaurants, watch and play sports, and enjoy recreational activities such as going to the beach. The LDS curtain is parting and people are beginning to see with their own eyes, rather than through the eyses of church authorities.
Sister Mary Lisa Nails' It (from her blog)
If Joseph Smith had the Internet.....
Helen Mar Kimball sits on her bed, computer in her lap.
Suddenly a pop-up message appears on her computer screen: nastyboyJS wants to chat ~ ACCEPT/DENY ~ She accepts.
nastyboyJS: hi. got your address from heber.
sweetiepie14: my dad?? who is this?
nastyboyJS: brother joseph
sweetiepie14: oh! hi!!! wow!
nastyboy14: how RU?
sweetiepie14: ur a nastyboy???
nastyboyJS: j/k - a joke i made up LOL
nastyboyJS: R u alone?
sweetiepie14: yes. why?
nastyboyJS: ur sweet
nastyboyJS: and pretty
nastyboyJS: when ur dad talks 2 u tonite, listen 2 him
sweetiepie14: what RU talking about?
nastyboyJS: just remember i talk with god, K?
nastyboyJS: & god tells me what to say
nastyboyJS: ur perfect
sweetiepie14: ROFL - no
nastyboyJS: i saw you last week in your white dress
nastyboyJS: you looked so pure and innocent
sweetiepie14: thx i think ur cute!
nastyboyJS: thats good. real good.
sweetiepie14: gotta help mom - ttyl
nastyboyJS: listen 2 ur dad - a commandment by God
sweetiepie14: k cya
Joseph Smith sits at his computer in a hidden location (for his safety).
fanny4U has signed in
nastyboyJS: hi F
fanny4U: hi lover
nastyboyJS: where RU?
fanny4U: @ ur house w/ Emma
fanny4U: she asked me 2 help her
nastyboyJS: RU OK?
fanny4U: yes - we R BFF again
nastyboyJS: don't trust Emma!!
nastyboyJS: get outa there now! don't say anything!
fanny4U: K - she's coming - brb
nastyboyJS: GET OUT NOW
fanny4U: xoxo ttfn
fanny4U has signed out
OrsonHide has signed in
ZinaBaby has signed in
elizaRsnow has signed in
OrsonHide: hi Joe
nastyboyJS: Orson! guess what?
nastyboyJS: ur going to jerusalem!
OrsonHide: WTF? A mission?
nastyboyJS: as revealed to me by god
OrsonHide: but what about Marinda?!
nastyboyJS: ur wife'll be taken care of. TRUST ME.
OrsonHide: i guess if god wills it.....
nastyboyJS: oh he does, he does.
nastyboyJS: Zina! Hi!
nastyboyJS: whatcha doin?
ZinaBaby: chatting w/ Henry
nastyboyJS: U should chat w/ me only
ZinaBaby: but he's my husband
nastyboyJS: about that.....
nastyboyJS: I dont WANT plural marriage
ZinaBaby: I know, me neither! lol
nastyboyJS: an angel came 2 me with flaming sword last nite. if i don't do this i'll lose my position and my life!
ZinaBaby: Wow! RU serious??
nastyboyJS: Lord made known to me UR 2B my celestial wife
ZinaBaby: i'll have to pray about this
nastyboyJS: good idea, then you'll know the truth i speak
ZinaBaby: what will Henry say if god wills it?
nastyboyJS: he follows god 2 - all will be well
ZinaBaby: i better go pray
nastyboyJS: lemme know asap
ZinaBaby: brb (praying)
elizaRsnow: hi babe
nastyboyJS: hi e
elizaRsnow: i wrote you another poem
elizaRsnow: inspired by last nite
nastyboyJS: u rawked my world! lol
elizaRsnow: i may be old, but i've got skilz LOL
nastyboyJS: can't wait to see poem
elizaRsnow: i can't believe emma didn't catch us!
nastyboyJS: we can't let that happen
elizaRsnow: i made ur bed this morning and thought of u
nastyboyJS: thx for helping emma at home
elizaRsnow: if it means i'm closer to u, then its all good
nastyboyJS: gotta run
elizaRsnow: luv u
elizaRsnow has signed out
OrsonHide: RU sure??? jerusalem is so far....
nastyboyJS: god wills it
OrsonHide: Y not Chicago?
nastyboyJS: god wills it
OrsonHide: Marinda is scared
nastyboyJS: i'll personally take care of her
OrsonHide: k...i guess if god wills it...
nastyboyJS: never fear u will be blessed
OrsonHide has signed out
EmmaHS has signed in
HeberC has signed in
HeberC: i talked 2 her like u said
HeberC: she didn't want 2 @ 1st
nastyboyJS: did u tell her like i told you 2?
HeberC: yes - salvation 4 all of us if she will
HeberC: i told her 2 think on it for 24 hrs
nastyboyJS: lemme know ASAP
HeberC: she's a good girl - she'll say yes
nastyboyJS: i hope so as god wills it
HeberC: i know - and i wanna be saved!
nastyboyJS: it depends
HeberC: gonna go talk 2 her again
nastyboyJS: u do that
HeberC has signed out
EmmaHS: hi babe
nastyboyJS: hi u sexy thang
EmmaHS: u know it!
nastyboyJS: gonna B gone 2nite
EmmaHS: not again! Y?
nastyboyJS: more of lords work
nastyboyJS: i may B gone 3 nites
EmmaHS: im not 2 happy
nastyboyJS: b strong
EmmaHS: its hard
nastyboyJS: ur my light, my life
EmmaHS: i know
nastyboyJS: god will bless u
EmmaHS: fanny was here
EmmaHS: we R friens again
nastyboyJS: b nice!
EmmaHS: Y should i?
nastyboyJS: i told you 2 thats Y
EmmaHS: u better stay away from her
nastyboyJS: of course lol
EmmaHS: im not lol
nastyboyJS: k i promise 2 stay away
EmmaHS: gotta run
nastyboyJS: luv u - cya in 3 days
EmmaHS: as u should
EmmaHS has signed out
sweetiepie14: u still here?
sweetiepie14: my dad told me
sweetiepie14: Y do u want me??
nastyboyJS: god wills it
sweetiepie14: will it save my kindred?
nastyboyJS: oh yes - salvation for all
sweetiepie14: im scared
nastyboyJS: god will provide - ur a good daughter of god
sweetiepie14: if it will save my family.....
nastyboyJS: say yes and be saved
sweetiepie14: and my family 2 right?
nastyboyJS: its the only way
sweetiepie14: i guess i will then
nastyboyJS: ur a good girl
nastyboyJS: u will be saved now
nastyboyJS: 2morrow nite we will b sealed 4ever
sweetiepie14: 2morrow nite!
nastyboyJS: god says it has to be 2morrow nite
nastyboyJS: ill take good care of you my sweet
nastyboyJS: i promise u eternal salvation
sweetiepie14: im scared!
nastyboyJS: im a prophet of god - b not afraid
sweetiepie14: k i guess
nastyboyJS: follow the prophet and b saved
sweetiepie14: 4 my family
nastyboyJS: oh 1 more thing
nastyboyJS: cant tell Emma - god said 2 keep us a secret
nastyboyJS: its gods will u keep it secret 4 my safety
sweetiepie14: if god says so then k
nastyboyJS: i look forward 2 us 2morrow
sweetiepie14 has signed out
nastyboyJS: did u pray?
ZinaBaby: i was told its true
nastyboyJS: came from god
ZinaBaby: this is hard
nastyboyJS: im not about 2 make that angel mad! r u?
ZinaBaby: but I luv henry
nastyboyJS: me 2 - but god wills it
ZinaBaby: henry knows god wills it
nastyboyJS: R u sure?
nastyboyJS: k - i'll be there 2morrow a.m.
ZinaBaby: so soon?!
nastyboyJS: u didn't c that angel
nastyboyJS: i cant wait 2B sealed 2 u
ZinaBaby: god wills it
nastyboyJS: and im a prophet of god - follow me n b saved
ZinaBaby: k ttyl
nastyboyJS: oh - god said dont tell Emma
ZinaBaby: k i promise cya
ZinaBaby has signed out
Joseph logs out and prepares to depart.
posted by Sister Mary Lisa at 8:48 AM
The Internet is KILLING the Cult of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Spin!
My kids do everything off the Internet, my boy recently bought a car on the east coast and sold his old one on the west coast! Music, clothes, homework, friends - it's all in the cyberworld now. And so is philosophy and religion!
When I was in the mission field we had almost complete control of the info our investigators received - maybe they looked at the encyclopedia or asked questions at work, but we were in control and they trusted us. But TODAY, who would want to try and teach Cyberkids? In seconds they can be on an "Anti-Conversion"site and print out pages of questions for their missionaries to answer!
Suddenly the missionaries know LESS about their OWN CHURCH than some random strangers!
The Internet did it for my wife and me. Our son-in-law deconstructed while teaching institute and early morning seminary. He decided to seek a little "outside"sources for his teaching and learned many things that drove him "out".
About a year later, while we (wife and I) were obsessing to the branch president about our son-in-law's departure, the BP suggested that his leaving the church might be our fault because we were not attending the temple as often as he thought we should attend.
My wife and I both had a WTF moment and went home and started surfing the Internet to find out just what had caused our son-in-law to leave so abruptly.
That was in March of 2005; by July we had read enough and submitted our letters of resignation and were officially "non-members" by October of 2005.
We have one child still in the church who has come to grips with our apostasy and respects our decision; at least now that he has recovered from our sudden departure. Our daughter and their whole family are now out as well.
Since we live in the mountains of North Carolina, we have almost no contact with that church and it is a fading memory (a bad one indeed!).
While I was on the bishopric in Penrith ward, one of my responsibilities was primary. One of the primary presidents left the church not long after moving out of the ward. I tracked her down recently and had a chat. It was fascinating. She started her journey out of the church while searching the Internet for material for a Young Women's lesson. She then spent 3 days with virtually no sleep just reading in astonishment at the things she never knew about the church. Her family is now well and truly out of the church including name removal. In fact, they took legal action to make sure the church put in writing that they actually removed the names of them and their children as they didn't want the church hunting the children down later.
I would be very happy to meet up, chat or swap emails with any exmo's or potential exmo's.
Leaving Mormonism is an incredibly impossible thing to digest at first, especially when you are not inactive at the time, as your not looking for a reason. Even though you realize afterwards you've been fed lies for years. You hear one thing in particular, what ever that be and the alarm bells start ringing. For me it took 18 years to hear it.
For me last year in 2005, late my old friend tracked me down, I had converted her to Mormonism 15 yrs ago, and she left briefly after that and wanted nothing to do with me because of Mormonism. So for years I had no idea what became of her. For a period of the last three years she was wondering about me all the time, and finally found out how to track me down.
Knowing we live in a very isolated place in Australia, never been to Utah and just follow what the leaders say as truth - Bizarre to think now! I only learned really of the Bible through LDS, didn't read or own one before this time. In truth when the sadly obedient paying missionaries, (fancy paying to follow a bunch of rules to be obeyed so as to not lose sight of having the spirit with you, eye single to the mission your own) teach the sugar and spice of the gospel the way they do. LDS have to advertise it the right way so people want to buy in.
We didn't have temples across our country and I certainly hadn't been. Even though I joined at 18. Got married, converted a man (actually no returned missionary (RM) wanted to marry me and there weren't many in this country anyway, but have been asked plenty of times by others. In fact I gave up my childhood sweetheart, and then my next great love because none of them believed in LDS and couldn't see why I couldn't just except them as they are. The saddest part this is I grieve now for all the other LDS sisters who aren't married and miss their years of youth, motherhood etc., because no worthy LDS wants to marry them or they haven't been asked.
You limit your options. Of course some other man in Australia outside of the church could have easily fallen in love with the same girl, someone that she loved to and they could of experienced a family. But as an faithful true LDS, you don't lose sight of the goal of exaltation. Hell, in the next life you'll get married and raise a family. SO so sad.
My friend who found me said about the blood oaths in the temple. Quoted the words that are spoken in the temple. And straight out I told here, that's just anti-Mormon stuff. I've been to the temple and I did no such thing. I said my goodness that stuff that you are saying is cultic satanic and I would never be a part of that, and I certainly wouldn't be LDS.
I just went to the temple a couple of years ago. (I was really furious at the time- my husband had been a few years prior- we were moving from state to state just under 1,000 km to do in the day, actually on the journey on the road that day, and just briefly dropped in to do my endowments and then kept driving in different cars too. All those who know could imagine what was going thru my head.
My friend told me she had been on the Internet for days, and she was obsessing with the history of the church and it just consumed her, that's all she could do. Immediately I asked my older LDS friend who had her endowments years prior in the Salt Lake Temple and I said did you do that throat penalty thing and she said yes. My teeth started to chatter. It was just this one simple thing for me.
Then I went online ( which I wasn't an Internet user), and it consumed me for a total of six months, it's all I could do and read history. Now my husband has done exactly the same thing. And its all consuming for us, I totally believe it's man made. But my husband knows now more than ever that its true. He speaks like a great doctrinal moron that drives me insane. Not a child can understand what he says, it's that complicated and hidden mysteries.
I don't know if he will ever come out. But I have brought my 4 young children out. 5-11 years old. This man is destroyed. His identity is Mormonism, and the ordinances are everything to him. The authority, the authority, the authority. It's like living with a Hitler. He mocks all Christians and the things they do as a waste of time. I have got my kids going to main stream Christian now and he refuses to help them get ready or anything, as he says going to Sunday school is a waste of time.
The sad thing is there are all these Christians out there who believe in Jesus Christ and believe in God and that is what Christ Himself taught the people to accept Him as their Savior and to believe in Him. These people love Him, but my husband thinks, well if you believe in Jesus Christ and want to follow Him then you would believe that the Book of Mormon was true and that he heads the LDS Church and you would be one of them, then you would be accepting Jesus. Its a vicious physiological circle for him.
Guys, there are still so many people struggling with Mormonism but don't have the courage to actually do anything about their true gut feelings on the matter. Once you start the courage to act a little bit further, the belief system will become so illogical that you will eventually see the light. It could take years, but it is worth the search to break the mold, because it is definitely all consuming.
You don't realize how judgmental you are as a Mormon towards others opinions on God and matters. You actually segregate yourself from society in a way you don't realize until you do COME OUT of Mormonism psychologically. Heck, I married a man I didn't even love, just so that I had a chance to be exalted and possibly live in the highest degree in the Celestial Kingdom and create worlds of our own. Even though not once could I actually say that I was in love with him. Has anybody married a man in the church that they weren't actually in love with for a similar reason in this day and age? I'd like to hear from them.
Everyone needs to come to their own faith in Jesus Christ in their own way I feel. Bless you all that still have in Jesus Christ, I do.
I know that the main threat the internet poses to Mormonism is the factual information about Mormon doctrine and rituals that can be dispersed to anyone who looks up the word "Mormon."However, the fact that individual congregations/wards don't have their own websites is absolutely going to hurt their ability to compete with other churches. People no longer have to look in the yellow pages for a new house of worship when they move to a new town-- they can look on the internet and find out what sort of church building, pastor, activities etc. each church offers before they go... except for the Mormon ones.
A church without a website is going to be assumed to be made completely of old people or fools.
MY TBM (True Believing Mormon) mother-in-law is serving a mission in the Richmond VA area. She is a very sweet, naive and devout woman who has swallowed the whole Mormon "thang"hook line and sinker. She actually WANTED to proselytize instead of work in the mission office where they had placed her originally. She is a seriously deluded person - sigh....
Anyway - she has told me several times that they will have some poor schnook investigator who they are "teaching"(GAD - I hate how she says that) and all of a sudden the person tells them not to come back. When asked why, on more than one occasion she has been told that the person looked up Mormonism on the Internet and read all sorts of "BAD"things. Of course, MIL thinks this is Satan's work.
I am delighted to know that some people are smart enough to look into this faith before they get dunked. If everybody did, there would be ZERO converts.
It was 10 years ago next week, during Thanksgiving in the US, that I put up a first page and typed "Recovery from Mormonism". It was on an ISP in Chattanooga, TN and was a personal web page before registering exmormon.org a few months later. The site was originally designed to last a year to pay forward those that had helped me recover from my Mormon experience. I never anticipated 10 years.
There have been and continue to be many volunteers who help behind the scenes to keep this running. It is because of them the site is still online. The Exmormon Foundation is an outgrowth of ex-Mormons' desires to help others out of the corporation.
I just had another interview with a newspaper doing an article on Mormonism. It is odd to me that such a small experiment changed my life. I am a quiet individual living in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains with a web site that has now become a collaborative effort which has reached thousands around the world. Who could of ever imagined?
Even though there were always things I didn't like about the church when I was growing and major things that just didn't quite compute--especially the temple (pre-1990), I never could have left because there would always have been that nagging "what if"hanging with me. I might have gone "inactive"but I never could have completely deconverted and been able to move on without the knowledge and facts that I did not have access to before the internet. - 11/12/2005 - Star Buck
I did leave before the Internet. However, when I got on line and found out about the DNA issue, I was quite happy with myself. It really confirmed what I had thought all along. And now there is so much to back up my decision. And others to talk to about the same process. Life is good! - 11/12/2005 - doublehelix
Religion competes with every other activity available under the sun, and while religion's offerings haven't changed much over time, other forms of entertainment have greatly improved and become more compelling. Like multi-channel cable TV, computer and console games, an explosion of sports broadcasting on Sundays, better and more available movies, the internet- chatting, instant messaging, news, e-mail, etc., cheaper and easier long-distance phone services, etc. All of this has the effect of decreasing interest in religious activities. And it will only get worse with HDTV and the wire to the premises information superhighway. - 11/11/2005 - F#m7
I left the Mormon Church recently after my son told me after church that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene. I never ever searched anything on the Internet before regarding church information except on the official site. I was curious about my son's comment so I went to Google and typed Mormon and there it was.
It was so disturbing I couldn't believed if this could be true at first. I thought these are lies then I even searched more. Well these are not lies. Most of them came from church books and articles. We quit this cult right away. Thank God for the Internet.
It was hard at first because we lost our friends, but my family is no longer under the control of Joseph Smith. All I can say is we are not in the dark anymore. - 11/10/2005 - been deceived
10/23/2005 - Dr John
I do not envy the church leaders. No one has ever confronted the truth in open battle and won. The only way to defeat the truth is to increase ignorance of it and dilute it. The internet has taken away that strategy. It is the double edged sword. The church depends on it but it is also killing the church.
The only reason the church survives at all is because the top leaders wisely do not depend on revelation. They depend on public relations firms, the best.
10/15/2005 - ZelphRules
At first I was very skeptical of all these books and websites and didn't want to believe them. I Googled everything and checked everyone's facts, and to my surprise, it was the LDS Church, Farms, and Fair that were full of crap, and everybody else actually checked out.
In fact, the MOST DAMNING WEBSITES I ever read from, were actually FARMS and FAIRLDS. Their lame explanations and loony spins were what finally confirmed what Simon Southerton, Grant H Palmer, Duwayne R Anderson, and the plethora of website like this one were saying. (for example, I didn't believe that JS made up the Zelph story, until I googled Zelph and found defenses of him on the church's own web sties!)
Yes, I was raised in the church in TN, was active for 30+ years, returned missionary, wife & I sealed in the temple. Active, True Believing Mormon, and saw my life-world-and-universe through my Mormon tinted spectacles. I had a few doubts or issues that I suppressed, but eventually a few of us started talking about some things.
I heard about Southerton's book on-line, and ordered a copy from Amazon. I read it. I got a copy for my dad. My brother ordered it, and so did another TBM (True Believing Mormon) friend. It was all we could talk about and think about, I told my wife and other friends and family members, I found the www.exmormon.org website, Googled everything having to do with the church and its history. Next we all bought and read copies of Grant Palmer's book, 'An Insider's View of Mormon Origins' and Duwayne Anderson's 'Farewell to Eden'. I would have never found this material had it not been for the Internet.
This is like a virtual stone cut out of the mountain with out hands, and there is nothing anyone can do to stop it. The only scripture that means anything to me anymore is this: "Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." That one really has a special meaning to me now.
eBay is not helping the church either. I didn't want to believe what I was reading about the church, so via eBay I started collecting some of the old books and manuals and stuff, and to my surprise, the gospel is NOT the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow!
09/19/2005 by frombehindthezioncurtain and others from Recovery from Mormonism
I had an interesting conversation today with a True Believing Mormon (TBM) friend of mine who lives in the Provo area. He was telling me how his kids have all left the church, mostly after attending graduate school, or earning an advanced degree somewhere. He said the all say the same things, that Brigham Young said this and that, no DNA evidence for Lamanites, Joseph had 50 wives, horses mentioned in the Book of Mormon when there were none at the time in North America, etc.
He couldn't figure out why his kids went away to get an education, and came back w/o a testimony. He then went on to say he knows of many people who are leaving the "church"and becoming atheists. This guy, who used to be a Bishop in a BYU ward, says that members are leaving in droves over this "anti"stuff they read on the Internet. Very interesting.
Any numbers on "leaverites"yet? - Statperson
"Leaverites"!! Love it! - jillian
Without the internet I would have never resigned - I would have never known there was information out there! Some of us grew up in very small towns with very limited access to things like church history. So, yes I credit a lot of it to the internet. - 09/19/2005 - Kim
I left so long ago when there was no Internet, so I really have wondered what effect the Internet has had on people leaving. What type of searches did you do? on polygamy? DNA? - Bonnie
I don't remember exactly what I started looking for - I might have typed in non-Mormon or something like that in a search engine. I came upon a site (it was probably this one!) and began reading exit stories. I was so overwhelmed with everyone's stories, and instantly felt a connection with these people, even though we had nothing in common except the church. For a long time I didn't want to explore the *anti* facts, because it was too painful to face them.
One day I happened upon someone's story about how she worked for the church (my memory is hazy on this one) and was trying to prove something on behalf of the church. Her research led her straight out of the church - it was this story where I learned about the Book of Abraham. I was so flippin' mad! Once I read that, I knew it was all a fraud.
So now that I wasn't afraid of the *anti* stuff anymore, I pretty much scoured this site and it ballooned from there. To this day I am still learning things, and my search has been going on for several years. Sometimes I will read something and it won't sink in. A year later I come across the same thing and all of a sudden it takes on a whole new meaning. Anyway, without the internet who knows where I would stand in the church. Probably a jack Mormon, still on the records but not giving a hoot about it all. Thank God someone invented the internet! - Kim
I left long before the internet even existed, but the Recovery from Mormonism site did encourage me to make it formal. - bona dea
The Internet is having a huge impact!
Okay, we are splitting hairs now. I'm with you "I am Kim."Obviously the Church is ultimately responsible for suppressing all of their true history and outright lying.
However, without the Internet, how was everyone going to find this out in the sheer volume that is happening right now. The Internet has had a huge, massive impact on the flow of information and that can't be denied. Most people won't go out of their way to find fault with the Church but when all they have to do is log into their computer, bingo, it's much easier.
Also, a lot of people are looking up innocent stuff, or preparing to teach a Church lesson and this site for example pops up. They start reading and the next thing you know, their gone too. I also wouldn't be writing this post or out of the Church if it wasn't for the Internet. 3-4 months ago, I had no idea that the Church was a fraud until I started reading this site and others. I was stunned!! I read many exit stories and all of the archived stuff and suddenly my mind opened up. Next thing you know, I was posting my own exit story, thanks to the Internet!!
There were obviously people that left the Church before the Internet, but I don't think that it was as many in number as it is now. Also, a lot of people it seems, just stopped going but didn't know all the details of the "dirty Mormon History", that everyone can now so easily find. I thought that I knew a lot about the Church, but I found out very quickly how little I really did know. The nice thing about the Internet, is that it puts everything in one place that can be accessed in seconds and minutes.
I would also say that they Internet and sites like this one have been huge in allowing people to anonymously share their experiences and insights. In other words, it is a place for people to gather and discuss what they think and feel, just like we are doing right now. That's probably the most important thing that the Internet has contributed to the individual.
But, just for fun, let's ask everyone!! Who would most likely still be in the Church if it wasn't for the Internet? I'm curious now.
http://mormontruth.blogspot.com/ - Samuel the Utahnite
Subject: Hinckley wishes porn was the biggest problem with morgbots being on the Net!!!!!! However, I quit because of GBH and the MOlympics. - around
I found this site & "Josephlied"a little over a year ago. This site led me to deconstructor's website, "rethinking Mormonism"website & other web sites. At first, I couldn't believe it. I didn't want to believe it. I discounted the information until I went to the library and checked out Grant Palmer's & Fawn Brodie's books & read them.
Almost immediately after finding this information on the internet, I quit my calling (teaching Sunbeams) and stopped going to church. I didn't tell my wife or kids immediately, in case I had actually stumbled onto fake or "offended anti" websites, but after reading Palmer's & Brodie's books, I had to share with my wife what I found. She is still undecided, but at least has confirmed her marriage to me & not the church, on a several occasions. I was relieved.
The Internet helped me out (but I'm not out officially yet) & continues to reassure me I'm making the right decision & help me recover. Mormonism is all I know and now I have to figure everything out again. Everything was all neatly packaged but since that is a lie, I have to figure it all out.
I'm sure porn is a huge issue in the church, but if the Morg wouldn't repress its members sexually & otherwise, the members wouldn't spend so much time & money on porn and then they could find the other great websites like this one to help them out of the Morg.
Also, when I was 15-17 years old, the internet wasn't as popular as it is now, in fact, I believe only the government & universities used it (late 80's). At this same time, I was fighting with my parents about the church and how I didn't believe & how do we know this or that. Basically, if I wanted to live in their house & survive, I had to believe & attend church. They basically forced me to swallow the blue pill. I didn't know there were Mormon history books in the library. I didn't know about the BoA information, which came out in the 60's.
I'm pissed at myself for caving & at my parents for forcing me & not allowing my free agency. I'm pissed at the church for being a bunch of liars, thieves & whores of the devil. I eventually went on a mission & served 2 years. I don't regret going on the mission (language & wife of 10 years now), but I feel bad for all the people I "taught"& baptized. Thank god I didn't go to BYU. whew...
Just wanted to get that off my chest. I would have been out sooner had the internet been around. - - AZanon
I left because I just got sooooo weary of trying to shove myself into the mo-mold. My metaphor has been the uncomfortable shoe that you wear because it is fashionable, and everyone says looks so good on you, but, in reality, it pinches and hurts, and ultimately limits you.
So I finally took the damn shoe off!!
If 'it feels so right' is reason enough to join the church, "it feels so rotten"should be reason enough to leave it!!
What I have learned since, at this site, has just been an intellectual affirmation of a decision I made based solely on my gut.
My increased sense of well-being and freedom have also been reaffirming. And I know that it was right for me to leave, and I know the church is NOT true, in the name of Ithankyouverymuchgod. Amen - jillian (the 'leaverite'!
My experience was much the same. I left because I didn't like it but had no internet to confirm my doubts . I have always been a voracious reader. Such books as "The Twenty-Seventh Wife"finished it for me. However, more people use the internet than read books so I am sure the internet is a major force. - bona dea
Intellectually, I had left before the Internet but the Internet helped to make it final.
Also, it was a great way to learn from so many other people who had been through similar experiences.
All the noise about Internet porn is just the GA's way of getting members paranoid about the Internet so they'll not read sites like this one. - John Andersen
The internet, specifically the exit stories, had a huge impact, reading stories from people who had the same unanswered questions that I did was overwhelming. Up to that point, I thought I was the only one who had questions. Reading other people's stories, and how sincere they were, and how hurt they felt after being lied to by the church was very powerful.
I then read more books, pro and con, about the church than I can count. Finally the answers to my questions came, and the church was not on the side of truth. The leaders lied to us, and the church continues to lie to the members.
The exit stories were very influential in my decision, the only way I would have "heard"from so many ex-Mormons was thanks to the internet..
I remember how the church was taking credit for the blessing of the internet and its help in spreading the gospel and in doing genealogy. They claimed all the good inventions came after the restoration of the "gospel"...the irony here is quite funny.
The internet is helping share information, that's all. All tyrannical governments/organizations suppress information, suppress public discourse and try to re-write history. Bummer for the morg, I hope it goes down the same path as the soviet union did. Truth always wins out in the end. - danboyle
The information available on the Internet started my slippery slide. A lot of things haven't fit for a long time, but, one Sunday in priesthood class the instructor mentioned "Joseph Smith's wives"and on the same Sunday our Gospel Doctrine instructor mentioned something about Hugh Nibley's daughter's book.
I got curious, so, in yahoo I typed in "joseph smiths wives", I clicked on a link to information about "In Sacred Loneliness"by Todd Compton and began my research, eventually it lead me to an information overload and a complete loss of belief in the authenticity of the Mormon claims to be the "only true church". I was convinced, by evidence sited on many web sites that the church was man made, as I had previously believed all other churches were, except Mormonism. - Jn
The original post said that the guys kids had left, mostly after graduate school. I can from my own experience say that my time at a liberal "Red Brick"university was probably the foundation for my apostasy. At University one is taught to think openly to criticize. The first thing I remember being taught in history class was about different sources, primary and secondary their relative values etc... Also crucially, that one should never rely on just one source of information.
But wait a minute... All that I'm supposed to read comes from the multiplicity of church materials that are out there. That I realized was not a balanced and objective way of learning. Slowly I started to notice holes in the history. Joseph Smith was in Carthage when killed - well why? - oh he was falsely imprisoned - why? No answer - he was falsely accused.
Don't get me wrong the internet has the power to enlighten all the fallacy of LDS inc, but the point about education is a good one. I think in a few years time the GA's will catch on to it. They must be losing well educated members young and old by the drove.
I reckon in the next few years BYU will be massively expanded. With growth leveling out they could easily project student numbers for a re-introduced policy of a higher education for all LDS students at BYU and it's affiliate colleges - "to protect the youth of the church from the increasing liberal and atheistic universities of the world and their so-called intellectualism"
Either that or they'll have to write a proclamation steering the faithful away from Arts & Social Science (Oh and DNA science too!) - J.
The Internet also provides a forum for discussion that allows "apostates"and doubters to converse, and share ideas in a semi-anonymous way without fear of being found out before one is ready. - Ken S.
BAPTISM RATES IN PORTLAND, OREGON
I'm from Portland. Portland is filled with former hippies, who settled here in the 1960s and 1970s. Very liberal city. So, baptisms have never been BIG here in the city of Portland or the suburbs here. People are too liberal. Angels giving boys plates of gold, no death before Adam and Eve, universal flood, Portlanders see these things as a Utahn would respond to Aliens from Venus talking to George Adamsky. Too FAR OUT for them to accept. Of course, because of the Internet, it is even worse.
Basically, the Portland Mission baptizes:
Illegal aliens from Mexico and other Latin American countries who want to be more "American" so they join an American church. If they JW's get to them first, they become JW's, but if the Elders get to them first, they become Mormons.
Immigrants from Africa (YES) who actually BELIEVE that angels give boys gold plates, and in Voodoo, and in witches.
Boyfriends and husbands of Mormon women; to keep their wives and girlfriends "happy".
That's about it. I served in San Jose and San Francisco, California. Basically, people were either Liberal, and could not believe in angels and gold plates and no death before Adam and Eve ate figs, or Fanatical Evangelical and therefore anti-Mormon. Either way, they weren't interested. Most people worked, and we often woke people up during the day when we tracted, because they worked at night. All our baptisms were either illegal aliens, or legal immigrants from AFrica or Asia who wanted/needed American friends, or the husbands or boyfriends of Mormon women who were "too good" to marry an active LDS guy (i.e. the husbands/boyfriends always had a LOT of money).
Before the 1960s, Portland used to be a conservative city, a "working" city filled with the children of lumberjacks and farmers and loggers, but, again, that was THEN. Portland was never a good place for baptisms, but, since the Internet, it has become even worse. The same is true for anywhere the Internet is popular. The Church is really only growing in places like Latin America, among the poor and ignorant and superstitious, and in Africa, where only 1% of the population has Internet access. In all other places, the Church is stagnating, or even shrinking.
Of course, the Brethren will place the blame for this SQUARELY on the backs of the lowly "Members"; as they always do. - 02/03/2013 - Darrick Evenson
I left the Church long before computers were common and certainly before there was an Internet.
I'm from a long line of Mormon ancestors, my parents had never been active; my brothers never were baptized. I "went to it"when I was about 13 or 14 and intially as I recall it was for social reasons. Then I started to believe and by the time I was 16 or so, I "knew"it to be true.
THEN I went to college at U of Utah and took a philosophy class. That made me think. It was easy to question because I knew my family wouldn't care what I did with my testimony. They had been wise in letting me choose my religious ways and would be the same when I left those ways.
I did marry a return missionary even though I think I was in the process of coming to the ultimate conclusion. My final demise was taking a church history class at BYU. The moment of my grand enlightenment occurred when the prof was describing Joseph having a vision in the Kirkland temple that "no one but brother Jospeh could see."
I thought outloud in my head, Yah, because it wasn't happening. Truly, since that moment, I have never believed anything but that it is a farce and that JS was a lecherous, charismatic fraud.
I waited a few days after my experience in the religion class to tell my husband that I thought he might divorce me but that I didn't believe in the Church and that I thought JS was a liar. He said, "That's ok, I haven't believed it since I was on my mission."
We tried for a couple of years to appear as believers but couldn't do it. Once one learns the truth, once one is free - the dull meetings, commitment of time and money, etc. etc. - the things you have to do to maintain the facade became impossible.
That's been over 45 years ago, and as I said, never a moment of second thoughts or regrets. Every time my husband and I pass a Mormon Church on Sunday, one of us will say, Wow, aren't we glad that we dodged that bullet."
I now read sites like this one and feel sad for those who agonize about leaving. I just want you to think about this: It isn't true and so you have no choice but to leave unless you can somehow find a place where what you enjoyed about it lets you participate but still be true to yourself. After all, religion is a personal, private thing and I don't believe that it was, even in its must fervent form (Mormonism to the contrary) meant to control your thoughts, your actions, and certainly not your morning or evening beverage, nor your underwear.
If you still go, for whatever reason, look around at the "faithful,"and ask yourself this question: If all of these people are going to the Celestial Kingdom, do I really want to go? c Can you imagine all those mediocre people in one place where they didn't have anyone to feel better than or judge???? Boring!! Worked for me. - 03/03/2010 - Grandmother in my 60's
I heard one time that there were these missionaries that went around and killed anyone who would not be baptized into the LDS church. Now I know this is true because I read it on the internet on some guy's website and he would never lie. Why would he have a grudge against the LDS church. EVERY THING IS TRUE ON THE INTERNET!!! Noone ever makes up stories and says untrue hateful things for revenge or pleasure. Way to go www.MormonNoMore.com teach me more. Maybe make up your own religion. The Religion of Anti-Mormonism.
GO ON AND LIVE YOUR OWN LIVES YOU ARE PATHETIC!!!!! - 12/19/2008 - Crazy
We were created to learn from our mistakes. The other day I was writing about Mormonism when I made the Mistake in writing this-MORON I, Then as I went to correct my mistake there it was the truth, The same as I AM A MORON !! A self pronouncement of one's-self, if there ever was a monent of truth. MORON I at the end of His life was still unsure if He was saved, after all that He had done to preserve and lay up the Gold Plates. After all all of his people were destroyed,because they all failed to measure up to the perfection required of them. What hope is there then for the rest of the Morons, Oh sorry! I meant Mormons, another mistake. well live and learn!
The face of the hiddenn Deity in The Book of Mormon is "Uglyness to the extreme"I unveiled that face 35 years ago. It snarled at Me, gnashed 'Its' teeth, and spit at Me invectives, claiming that I would rue the day I unveiled Its face! That Diety foreswore that It would turn My Children and all who loved Me against Me, It swore at Me, saying that 'IT"would cause Others to see in My countenance a reflection of what I uncovered. I then swore back with all of My soul that I would root Him out and expose 'Its' ugly face to all! Well 35 years later I have gotton no one to believe Me, some seem to but soon they are looking at Me with scepticism in their Faces. I never got to see My five Children grow up, nor have a relationship with My grandchildren, all My loved Ones in My Family seem to be leery of Me, and cannot utter why? I know why, but no one will allow to Me 'CREDIBILITY', strangly so. I have lived Yet another life time since I unveiled That ugly face! Now just last Month I found 'The Salamander Society' and I read all of these comments under the banner "WHY?" I know Why, and Who, for I HAVE SEEN THE FACE OF IT, AND FACED IT, AND PAID THE PRICE FOR DOING SO. Do I regret it No I cannot, I found a value beyond that what was taken from Me, and that is "unconditional love"The love the real Jesus taught off. Yes I have a friend in Jesus, and He is the Christ! not the bearer of that Ugly Face behind all of Mormonism! As I am RAMLED - 11/16/2008 - Ramled
MORMONS STILL RULE! - 07/27/2008 - Nephi
I was never a member of LDS, but spent 5 years working at BYU for money. Coming from a formerly communist country kind of immunized me to the brain washing that I experienced there. In my country there are estimated only 1.4 k members and only 20% of them are considered "active"- I guess one can find some insane people in every population. Compare that with a 40 million population and this will give you an estimate of mental health difference between Poland and the USA - "the greatest country on Earth". As weird experience as it was it thought me an important lesson though. It made me realize that we all live the life of illusions (or sometimes delusions). They may take a form of LDS nonsense, the believe that money will guarantee us freedom or security, pursuit of career or thousands of other things. Mormons are in a serious need of professional mental help - no doubt, but after all line between sanity and insanity is very thin. We are all not that much different. - 07/12/2008 - Ireneusz Nowak
To all who've said see-ya-later to those phony hustlers from the Utah "Kremlin"because of this remarkable medium, I say welcome home. You wouldn't want to share your eternity with those bungholes anyway. Imagine sharing a cloud with Gordon Hinkley? forever!! Barf! - 12/19/2007 - Johnny Putt
Public relations firms and Madison Avenue to sell Gods Words of Truth? What an insult to God and the most powerful form of PR ever- Simple Truth, spoken to your heart by God himself. What kind of Mormon God allows truth to be copyrighted and sold to members for $27.95 at Desert Book?...with all royalties going to further fatten so-called GA's.
I have left Mormonism and their money machine made-up of "members in good standing."for reasons without number. What an insult that stereotype was, having it, or, not having it, and the smug feigned humility it created. Called in once a year to give accounting of all the tithes, offerings and assessments paid when the rest of the year they teach (wink-wink) Christ's admonition-- to not let the left hand know what the right hand is doing. A church of power and authority instead of love and forgiveness.
A church that is "the only true church"but, can't tell the truth about it's own history locked-up in a vault inside a vault inside a vault. A church that proclaims it is the absolute truth, yet, it won't tolerate absolute scrutiny. Question General Authorities!! Debate these people who act like truth is afraid of inquiry. I got sick of realizing that the thing I should be asking the most questions about ever-- my eternal soul, well-- "shut-up the thinking has been done."I got tired of the knot in my gut I had listening to all the inconsistencies and contradiction and being told that revelation is ongoing and truth changes...but never changes... while siting there nodding approval of my own brainwashing.
I love Jesus Christ, and the Jesus Christ that inspires me, and is my Savior, Teacher and Friend- is not the Mormon Jesus- never was, and never will be. I'm sorry it took me so long to figure it all out. What a waste of time it was reading and believing fiction and imagining it to be the truth because Joseph was a true prophet. Jesus said: "Come follow Me."So I did, and quit following "the prophet" then followed Jesus right out of the LDS church. - 11/09/2007 - Markus
Here's the most recent LDS gem on the Morg website:
"The Church is a place where imperfect people gather to provide encouragement, support, and service to each other as we press on in our journey to return to our Heavenly Father." ?Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin
Here's the draft I found dumpster-diving outside the Church Office Building:
"The Church is a place where uptight, depressed people gather to hide their mutual anxieties, feel "normal"in spite of the hip neighbors taking their boats to the lake, and pretend to be superior to everyone else as we press on in our journey to fund this silly cult and make our parents proud." - 11/05/2007 - Russ Landshark
The internet is amazing. I was in my senior year of college, was suffering from anxiety, depression, major guilt complex, etc. and had subsequently become semi-active, though I still paid my tithing, fast offerings, prayed and read my scriptures (though not every day as I used to).
I was at the point where I was suffering an emotional breakdown/meltdown nearly on a weekly basis, I woke up 4-7+ times everynight in addition to taking 1-2 hours to fall asleep in the first place....basically, I was falling apart. It was General Conference time and I had been invited to a TBM friend's house to watch conference (btw, still a good friend, she doesn't know the extent of my split from the church however. i think she would be sad if she knew, but she's a good person and wouldn't ditch me or condemn me because of it. her bro is an exmo).
Her kids got sick and so she cancelled the conference watching at her place--she used to invite us college kids over for brunch and conference, as well as the mishies. So, after having been up most of the night studying and not feeling like getting up and driving 20-25 minutes to the closest meeting house, I decided to sleep in instead.
I felt guilty after a while (story of my life) and decided to try watching conference online from my dorm room. It was a bit dry, and for some strange reason, I'm still not sure what came over me, I googled "former mormon". The rest, as they say, is history. I didn't believe everything I found at first--all the history of Joe Smith, the history--and present doings of the church, etc.
It took study, prayer, and soul-searching---whether those of you who are still TBMs believe it or not---to come to the conclusion that the LDS church is NOT true, is NOT what it represents itself to be. Without the internet and these awesome sites I might still be there, in that emotional and mental rut, continuing to fork out my 13% (which since half of my income went directly to school, made closer to 25% of my actual takehome income). Thanks guys!!! - 11/02/2007 - phoenix rising
If u don´t like it, just leave it. There are many thing to enjoy and learn, don´t be a obstacle to others - 10/30/2007 - anon
Put your laptop into a hat and find the truth by reading the google-stones. - 10/28/2007 - Lurch
Attention all! I found a church that truly believes in Christ! It reads from both parts of the bible, old and new testament. These people are so committed to their church and always try to be Christlike. They hold the True Priesthood of God. This church is the fastest growing church in the world! They even follow Prophets today!
So let me think: follow some screaming evangelical who holds no priesthood, and all he does is read the bible to me, and guilts me into donating to HIS PERSONAL FUND, and drink or do whatever you want as long as you come to church? OR follow a prophet God has blessed us with. A church where PRAYER and the HOLY GHOST are the true ways to find answers -not the messed up lying internet.
My Church is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.
Even if if ends up not being true - I'm still saved by all of your standards!! (i.e. accept christ) But if I'm right...hmm....think about it. - 11/01/2007 - Troy
My journey out of the LDS church was step by step and with every quiet question I was asking myself. When I felt it was time to get my name off the records for I was thinking about having children and I didn't want "the church" to automatically add them. I sat down and did my first search on how to go about taking my name off. The very first site I clicked on was www.mormonnomore.com I am every grateful and want others to know how simple and easy it is.
Now that I am free to live and love ALL people I have joy and peace. My family will have nothing to do with me and won't even let me see my nieces and nephews. Not even this would take me back to the lies that make up "the church" Since I have left the mormons I have done more research on the computer and it confirms to me that my own inspiration is MORE than any "man of god" Thank you for Salamander Society and many others!!! Cheers and my you find your own path and passion what ever that is and where ever it takes you!!! LOVE without fear and guilt - 10/07/2007 - I'M FREE
I have never liked the church..the comment up above a bit says something about a shoe not fitting..and that was exactly how I always felt. Even the day of my baptism I thought it was all stupid, but was too afraid to tell anybody..Besides they were haivng cake and a I got a bunch of presents...Leaving has been the only right thing I have ever felt in reagrds to the morg. - 09/03/2007 - Shel
Not only did I get duped into the "sacredness"of the temple (prior to 1990) so that I didn't question the pantomining of slitting my own throat, cutting out my heart, or disemboweling myself and then taking a satanic blood oath to never tell it as interestingly(!) warned of in Moses 5:29 (Lucifer telling Cain to never tell it or suffer his life to be taken before delivering Abel to Cain to be murdered)
BUT, I also consecrated everything to the church - everything I own, my time and talents, etc. This provided and still provides for the church leaders/money changers (who secretly sit on bank, insurance, corporate boards) the justification to steal your assets by surrounding you, accidents, taping your phones, sabotaging your cars. Don't worry they only do this if you have assets worth stealing. Most TBM don't have huge assets because they are too financially stressed because of their huge families, depressed wives, and fatigue from mind-numbing callings. There are hundreds of us who are talking with each other who have had our assets stolen. Many of us are writing books. So the truth will continue to come forth. Interesing tidbits: Hinckley is a facade and threatened Garth Baum when Hinckley wanted settlement because of "60 Minutes"publicity, they (Mormon Mafia)stole his cherry orchard in Provo.
Research SLTribune article "Silent Witness"about GBH's son-in-law confession to the FBI regarding his Olympic scandal bribery checks that he admitted to writing out. Five weeks later Alan Barnes is dead from a non-traceable, "heart attack."
I personally know of people in Montana, Utah, England, Canada, Alabama, Missouri, and California who have had "Mormon Mafia"events stealing assets, causing accidents, taping phones (remember the illegal use of Matrix in UT & FL?) It is well organized and very real. You are smart to "get out of his employ." - 01/16/2007- antiMormon Gestapo
I am leaving Mormonism, put in my formal letter, been to all the anti-mormon sites also. Most of those sites are like counseling or are very true and funny! I was duped, screwed over, mentally tortured and then some. I still get harassment big time. - 09/08/2006 - Michelle
The internet is many things to me. I love it and surf much. The most important thing for me about the internet is that it freed me from the clutches of the morg. I resisted much "temptation"for a long time, but eventually succumbed to the siren's song "recovery from Mormonism." Now the rest is a slowly fading church history.
Joe Smith was a prick. The current church leadership is either incredibly, unbelievably ignorant, or else evil.
That ain't my testimony. That's fact. - 03/26/2006 - zman44
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