O Tannenbaum Talkeria


O Tannenbaum Talkeria—It’s Christmas!

Ok…we won’t have snow.  But, we will have great food & great conversation.  Friendships formed.  Connections created.  Stories shared.  Loneliness lifted.

The food has generously been provided for!!!  So, come and enjoy.

If you plan to attend, please send me an RSVP.  Either private message on Facebook or email me at liberty-sam@msn.com.

Over the past 6 months, 32 people have visited the Talkeria.  Ten more have told me they hope to come soon.  The largest gathering ever was 7 attendees.  We may have more or less this Wednesday.  If you have never come before, you are always welcome to join us.

What’s the Talkeria all About?

Gut-Wrench in the Closet

Over the past 2 1/2 years, I have undergone a gut-wrenching faith transition. I am still a faithful member of the LDS church. However, I look at the world much differently. I say gut-wrenching because my journey has been accompanied by a good bit of anguish, pain, anger, disappointment and loneliness. Navigation has been difficult for me…..and my family.

For the first 7 months, I thought that I was completely alone in searching out new truths. Little did I know that there were, and are, many treading the same path. But, that was not initially evident. There was a part the LDS culture that I was naively unaware of. Much of the history and doctrine of Mormondom is forbidden to discuss at church. Asking certain questions in public or in private yields judgment but no answers.

The suppression of honest discussion causes a number of unintended consequences. I have personally experienced several. I have also witnessed the difficult experience of others.   Two years ago, I started suggesting to my local church leaders that there was a need to find a way to discuss troubling issues. As the years have passed, I have watched as more and more friends and family walk away from the church that they had once been so committed to. All of them had basically grappled in private with their gut-wrenching faith transition.

So, absent any other venue for open & in-person discussion, I started the Mormon Talkeria.  A casual sit-down to kindly and respectfully talk.

Talkeria Topics

If you find yourself in any of these situations, let’s talkeria.

  • LDS history and doctrine are troubling you, family members or friends.
  • You have a child who is doubting or has left the church.
  • You have a parent, sibling or friend who is doubting or has left the church.
  • Your faith has changed, and you are having difficulty interacting with family or friends
  • Your faith has changed and are having difficulty in your marriage.
  • The faith of your spouse has changed and you are having difficulty in you marriage.
  • You are LGBT, in or out of the closet.
  • You have an LGBT child, sibling or friend.
  • You have left the church, but still have Mormon issues to discuss.
  • You have left the church, but still want to maintain contact with Mormons.

Belief Spectrum

The Mormon Talkeria is meant for both believing Mormons, ex-Mormons and anybody in-between. Whatever path a person choses or has chosen, judgment has no place here. Discussions are not intended to try to sway anyone to leave, stay or come back to church. Rather, this will be a place of support for the journey each has chosen.
I am not an expert at anything.  I’m certainly not a professional counselor. That’s not the purpose of The Talkeria.  It’s simply a venue for talking face-to-face and friend-to-friend.

For more information on the Talkeria history, click HERE.

7 thoughts on “O Tannenbaum Talkeria

  1. Sam,

    What a wonderful, much needed venue you are providing! I salute your Talkeria initiative.

    Of course, you realize that the Church cannot provide ANY forum that invites doubting or troubled members to discuss their Personal Reality out in the open, within the walls and under the roof that’s owned and controlled by The Brethren.


    The LDS Church is, by survival necessity, unswervingly Truth-O-Phobic.

    While it is indeed possible for members who remove their Correlated Blinders to decide to remain active within Mormon Cult-ure for social and personal reasons, it is also very likely that de-whitewashed members will up and hie their heinies away of Kolob at full speed ahead, if not warp speed.

    Sam, the service you are offering is special because you are still an attending member with close emotional ties to the Church and its good and decent members, including especially those who are enduring the lonely and scary journey towards the Light.

    Thank you, Sam, for your huge heart and for the clear and present LOVE you express to your fellow humans through both word and action.

    BTW, I am sure there is a Mormon Stories meetup group in your area. I will check it out. Wow! I am surprised to see nothing in Houston. There are groups in Dallas, Austin and San Antonio.


    Sam, I wonder if you want to register your group or somehow get visibility on that list. Could be that any dotted line to John Dehlin might scare some people away. Something to consider.

    If I were close, I would join you for dinner, Sam. Hope you get a good turnout!


  2. Hi Gary,

    You could be correct about the church not permitting open discussion of questions and doubts. But, I haven’t given up hope. Regardless, we have the Talkeria which provides the same open forum for addressing Mormon issues, including the “lonely and scary” journey that many are on.

    18 months ago, when I was looking for a support group, I was shocked to find nothing in Houston.
    That eventually drove me to form one here. I had experienced the terrifying & solitary faith journey and knew that there were others who needed help.

    All the groups that I’m familiar with are mostly for those who have left the church. Ours is different. Of course, we provide support for those who have left or are leaving. But, we also support those who want to stay. As you know, I fall in this camp.

    If you ever get to Houston, my friend, I’d love to have you join a Talkeria. They are normally intimate gatherings of 2 to 7 people. The small groups facilitate deeper conversations that address what needs addressing. Only twice has been the attendance been just little ole me. That’s OK, too. Gives me 3 hours to work on a new blog.


      1. You know, most of the time when people say things like, “I’ll schedule a talkeria to accommodate your timing.” I’d say uh huh sure you would. But not with you! You are such a loving person of integrity I believe you! I’ll probably never make it to Texas but your comment means a lot. Thank you!

        Liked by 1 person

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