Apostolic Possibility!!!

Apostles 2018

One week ago today, I met with my stake president.  He had received personal revelation that it was urgent to give me a message.  Referring to Protect the Children, he said, “Walk away, Sam, walk away.”

He asked me to seriously consider it.  I said I would.  We didn’t discuss it much further.

After our meeting I carefully deliberated.  Within a few days, my decision was firm.  “Walk with the children, Sam, walk with the children.”  I chose not to walk away.  Rather, I would move full steam ahead with preparations for the action on July 28 & 29.

I have purposefully been vague on what the action would entail.  Here are some of  the reasons for withholding details:

  1. Many people surely would have called me out to NOT pursue this course.  I didn’t want to spend my energy in defending.
  2. Many people would have scoffed and called the action meaningless.  Again, I didn’t want to waste the energy in convincing.
  3. I didn’t want to give the church advance warning this time.  In all of our storied history, this would be the first time they have ever faced this type of action

 Meeting in the Wind?

I arrived in Salt Lake City yesterday, Wednesday.  Within one day, unforeseen developments have arisen.  A staunch supporter of PLDSC invited me to an early breakfast.  He has deep connections in the church.

Following, is a very shortened version on the conversation.

SupporterWould you be interested in meeting with an apostle before the action if I could line it up?

SamOf course.

SupporterI’d have to know what you are planning.

Sam(I described all the elements of the action.)

SupporterThat has the potential to cause a real PR nightmare for the Church.

SamThat’s what I’m counting on.

SupporterIf you secured a meeting with the apostle, would you be willing to call off your action?

SamI’d at least be willing to postpone it.

Supporter:  Okay….I’ll reach out to my contact right after breakfast, describe what’s going on and see if he would be willing to contact the apostle.

This afternoon, Supporter had a “long” meeting with his Contact.  They discussed the many risks the church faces by continuing these interviews, the potential PR storm and several other implications.

Contact already knew about my work.  He even AGREES with the changes we are calling for.  How amazingly cool is that!

Memos about policy changes have crossed his desk.  Often he thinks to himself, “This has Sam written all over it.”  I thought, “Nope it has 10’s of 1,000’s of good people’s names written all over it.  And 1,000’s upon 1,000’s of survivors names written all over it.

Within only 24 hours of arriving in Utah, my apple cart may have toppled completely over.  But in a good way.  We have a possibility of making our case directly to an apostle, someone who actually has the power to make changes.

**Update:  Contact just requested my cell phone number.

Choices

I’m not terribly hopeful that an apostolic meeting will actually happen.  If it does, I will then have to decide whether or not to postpone.

If nothing is set by tomorrow, it’s full steam ahead.

Details

So now, the Church knows the details.

A major Salt Lake TV station called me today.  I shared the details and swore them to silence.  As a neophyte, I’m hoping the media keeps confidences.

The circle of people in the ‘need to know’ category has now expanded to 15.  Some of them gave me serious push back as described above.

Even so, I’m not ready to release all the details in public….except for the ones below.

The action’s start date has been moved up to Friday July 27th at 7:00pm MT.  It will continue behind the scenes all day Saturday.

Sunday, July 29th

9:00am: I will announce the entire action from the shadow of the Salt Lake Temple.  It will be broadcast by livestream on Facebook and hopefully Youtube.  I haven’t figured that one out yet.

11:00am:  I’m going to sacrament meeting to renew my covenants.

5:00pm:  I return to South Temple and hope to meet many of my friends.

6:45 – 8:00pm:  Still at South Temple, a daily ritual will be established and a special meeting conducted.

Obviously, I have left out the PR nightmare details.  Those will be announced Sunday morning.  At the same time, I’ll be sharing many ways that people in every nook and cranny around the world can actively participate.

The march was historic.  It was magical.  It accomplished so much in so many ways.  It landed the Sacred Stories of  our Sacred Children on the desks of the apostles.  Elder Christofferson took the time to read them all.  Kudos to Elder C.

The coming action, nameless until Sunday, will be every bit as historic.  This will be the first and maybe the only time this occurrence faces the Church.  I have heard many people lament that they missed the march.  Don’t lament missing this action.  I’m depending on YOU to give it a powerful walloping punch felt around the world.

With all that said….a meeting with an apostle may put our maneuver on hold.

 

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Looking for an Apostle

March crush at COBThe following email was sent to my stake president tonight.

Dear President,

Over the past year, I have been very active in working to bring awareness to the dangers of our interview policies:  The petition.  The Sacred Stories.  The march.  The news conferences.  All the TV, radio and newspaper coverage.  The top tier media coverage in Australia and the U.K.  Finally, National Children’s day.

This has led many parents to protect their children by establishing wise boundaries.  A wonderful thing.  It has enabled and facilitated healing.  A gorgeous thing.

It has also led the Church to make changes.  Unfortunately, they were minor.  Although they were steps in the right direction, all the inherent dangers remain.

My next action is planned for July 28 & 29.  Of course, it will be a peaceful undertaking.  It’s an action that the church has never faced before.  It will draw every bit as much attention as the march.  In fact, it will have a much bigger impact.  Millions of people who have never heard of our cause will become aware of what we Mormons subject our children to.

A few months ago, I visited the building which houses the apostles’ offices.  I requested an appointment.  They didn’t let me through the locked doors.  Rather, they talked to me through an intercom.   I was informed that a security detail would meet me in front of the building.

Sure enough, within just a few minutes, three guards in business suits appeared.  They didn’t emerge from the front door.  They just seemed to materialize out of nowhere.  Although I was a bit nervous, we had a delightful conversation.  They told me how to secure a meeting with an apostle.  My stake president would have to make a request to his supervising seventy which would then be relayed through the area presidency.

So, here’s my request.  Please relay to your supervising seventy that I’d like to meet with an apostle. 

I’ll be in Salt Lake City on Saturday the 28th and Sunday the 29th.  The action will last all day, both days.  However, what happens on Saturday will not be visible unless someone is really paying attention.  On the 29th, what happened on the preceding day will be revealed and it will continue all day Sunday.

Preparations have been quietly underway for the past few weeks.   The elements are coming together to enable thousands of voices to unite to protect our children and to protect the good name of the church.

Please rest assured that this action will be completely peaceful and legal and……HUGE.  It will pose no threat to anyone or anything….except to a dreadful policy.

BTW, if you are ready to stand with me to protect our kids, I’ll gladly buy your plane ticket to Utah for our meeting with an apostle.

Please keep me advised,

-Sam

Finally, An Apostle is Leading the Charge

 

neldontanner

N. Eldon Tanner served as an apostle from 1962 to1982. In October 1978 General Conference, he directed his remarks specifically to bishops. He called them out for having asked explicit sexual questions.  YES!!!  Obviously, the top church leaders have been aware of this problem at least the past 40 years.  It’s time that we as Mormons heed the apostle’s words.

NEVER in general conference has an apostle given approval for explicit sexual questions being posed to our children.   Nope…NEVER.   On the other hand, an apostle, serving in the First Presidency, specifically forbid this type of behavior by our bishops.  What our bishops have been doing to our children is NOT condoned by the apostles.

The Petition to Protect the Children calls for the same things that Elder Tanner spoke out about.  Obviously, many of our bishops chose NOT to heed this apostolic warning.  The carnage detailed in the sacred stories of our sacred children is the unfortunate result.

March-For-The-Children

On March 30, 2018, one thousand concerned human beings will March-For-The-Children in support of Elder Tanner’s counsel.  This will be an historic occasion in Mormon history.  Marching both to protect our children and to show our support for the apostles.

Make plans to join us now.  Arrange the day off, book your flight, put together your car pools.   Bring your family, bring your kids, bring your friends.  For most of us, this will be a once in a lifetime opportunity.  One that we will treasure with fondness for the rest of our lives.

You can register to March-For-The-Children on Eventbrite or on Facebook.

***Please Share the March-For-The-Children FAR and WIDE***

Links

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I am a Non-Believer?

hiding-catOver the past many months, some members of the LDS Church have called me a non-believer.  Mostly it happens on social media or behind my back as gossip.  Not much opportunity to engage in a heart-to-heart as to what I believe.

Then, yesterday, I had a conversation with a very close friend who is also a member.  As we rambled, he casually referred to me as a non-believer.   It caught me off guard.  It took me aback.  I questioned myself, “I am a non-believer?  How can I possibly be viewed as a non-believer?”

After this friendly interchange, I got in my car to drive away.  I contemplated how others look at me.  Tears began welling.  How can it be that I have faith in Jesus Christ, but am considered a non-believer in the Church of Jesus Christ?  How has it come to this, that faith in Jesus is not enough?  How is it possible that good church members could make this kind of judgment?  It does not feel right.

Jesus Christ.  I believe in His gospel.  I absolutely adore his teachings and example.  They reach into the core of my heart.  So much so, that I’ve decided to place my faith in Him and only in Him.  His way is a true and wonderful way to live a good and fulfilling life.  My goal is to emulate the Savior in word and deed.  Not always an easy task.  ……..So, I am a Non-believer?

The Book of Mormon.  This is a tremendous book of scripture.  It contains teachings of Christ.  It elaborates and elucidates the doctrines of Christ.   It’s another witness of Christ.  It beckons me to follow Him.  The Book of Mormon has blessed my life, my family and the lives of many others.  ….So I’m really just a non-believer?

The Apostolic Leaders of the Church.   I recognize and sustain them as prophets, seers and revelators.  They are good men.  I listen and pay attention to their loving direction.  However, I view them as men, fallible men.  Modern day prophets and apostles can and have led us astray.  That does not invalidate their calling or station.  It validates that they are men.      ….Is it this that makes me a non-believer?

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.    I have been a member all my life.  It has served me well.  I have served it diligently and for tens of thousands of hours.  My callings have been full of many treasured experiences.   The church was a vital part of the upbringing of my children.  I love the church.  I am happy that my children and grandchildren still embrace it.   …..Thus, I am a non-believer?

Isolation

Over the past year, I have become acquainted with many active Mormons whose faith has transitioned.  They presently serve in various ward and stake callings.  Yet, they are in hiding.  They suffer or stew in silence.  Some say they are “hanging on by their fingernails.”  Others express that they don’t know how much longer they can take it.  Some have decided to leave when a certain life event occurs.  Still others simply continue in support of a spouse or parent.

So, why don’t these good people broach their concerns and conclusions within their own wards among their own friends?  Why:   IT….IS….NOT….SAFE.

I have been very open about my faith and beliefs.  By many, I have been judged as a non-believer.   That does not make me feel safe.

Some of my active & secretive church friends only believe parts of the LDS gospel.  Some have moved all the way to being atheist.  I can only imagine how unsafe they must feel if someone like me is deemed a non-believer.

Why can’t we come out of isolation, hiding and hurt?  Why can’t we all just be members who are attempting to follow the teachings of Christ?  Without the constant, nagging worry that we will bear a judgmental blot of stigma for our beliefs?

Do YOU view me as a non-believer?  Feel free to comment with a yea or nay.