No SSA missionaries allowed

From Jan 8, 2016 Area Council Meeting Minutes:

Same sex attraction of missionaries. It is critical that these issues are known and understood prior to a missionary being called. They don’t stay in the field if we know about them.

An anecdote was advanced suggesting this was recently applied: here. An anecdote from 2006 of someone who served while out of the closet and an undated anecdote.

Apparently Greg Prince just stated on his radio west podcast that SSA missionaries can serve on a mission and that this was a sign of progress.

Worthiness interviews need to be specific and explicit

From Jan 8, 2016 Area Council Meeting Minutes:

Worthiness interviews need to be specific and explicit (emphasis added)

This instruction lends credence to the idea that invasive interviews are not anomalous but rather prescribed. In light of that instruction, consider whether these anecdotes are anomolous or whether Church instruction has some precipitous influence on them:

  • Bishops may ask very probing questions about sexuality, particularly to those about to serve a mission (example)
  • Bishops may ask children as young as 8 years old if they touch themselves (example, recording).
  • Some leaders ask youth and adults about their orgasms and sexual positions as they probe regarding masturbation and past sexual transgressions. testimonials
  • A leader, at their discretion, may ask an individual to reconfess all past sins to whatever previous point in time they deem relevant (for example, “‘all transgressions’ committed since your first sealing, even those that have already been resolved by church authorities”)
  • Missionaries frequently confess and reconfess all their sins in an effort to become worthy (example)
  • Bishops may conduct frequent and invasive interviews at their discretion and may use social media to find evidence of indiscretion (example)


Lawyer 70s sent to assist in high-profile discipline

From June 10, 2016 Area Seventies Minutes:

Elders Bangerter and McKay will be working with Elder Dewsnup to assist stake presidents with disciplinary situations where the matter may become public or involve media attention. Their involvement can come at the request of a General Authority, Area Seventy or Stake President. Issues may include: same sex marriage, ordained women, transgender issues, or other items that may not be addressed in the Church Handbook. These are not normal disciplinary situations. They will walk through procedures with the stake president and help him design a measured way to deal with the situation. Problems arise when priesthood leaders act in a precipitous way. Your role as Area Seventies is still essential.

Leaders unwilling to address discipline may be released

From here

Stake presidents and bishops who are unwilling to address disciplinary matters are subject to being released.

Which confirms what Dehlin and Snuffer said about their Stake Presidents.

Both statements on discipline should be contrasted with this Deseret News article:

Each of the [stake] presidents said local decision-making is critical and in fact is a product of what Mormons know as priesthood keys. Stake presidents have priesthood authority for their stakes that no else has, not even the church’s general authorities.

Those priesthood keys give them the divine right to direct inspiration for their stakes and the members in them. All three [stake presidents] said they never have consulted with general authorities about a disciplinary hearing.

And this from the Newsroom:

…local leaders have the responsibility to clarify false teachings and prevent other members from being misled. Decisions are made by local leaders and not directed or coordinated by Church headquarters.

So, the statements are technically correct but at least somewhat misleading.