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One of the mistakes many Mormons are making is assuming that their Leaders have the last word on the subject. A classic example is the calling of a homosexual activist to a Priesthood leadership position in San Francisco. Here are some responses I have seen from apologists:
"If you have an issue with what the Bishop of the Bay Ward and his Stake President have done then you should make such issues know to your Bishop or Stake President and let them pass it along to the proper channels."
"this is coming very close to "evil speaking of the Lord's anointed". For what ever reason the Bishopric of a the Bay Ward with the agreement of the Stake President have called this man to the position. For us to speculate here as to the how and why of a that calling or to call into question the actions of these men is troubling to me."
"I learned from a temple sealer a couple years back that evil speaking of the Lord's anointed is not just those in leadership but rather anyone who has been through the temple has also been anointed. So we must be careful how we treat or talk about each other. I thought that was quite interesting."
Sadly, these individuals need to read their LDS Scriptures. The Church is not supposed to be run by a tyrannical group of leaders imposing their will on the general membership, who dutifully obey regardless of questions of right and wrong. In fact, it is supposed to be run with the common consent of the General Membership:
" 12 For, behold, these things have not been appointed unto him, neither shall anything be appointed unto any of this church contrary to the church covenants.
13 For all things must be done in order, and by common consent in the church, by the prayer of faith. (D&C: Section 28)
Common consent means that every member has a say, and a vote, over what the Church can and cannot do. According to the Book of Mormon:
"26 Now it is not common that the voice of the people desireth anything contrary to that which is right; but it is common for the lesser part of the people to desire that which is not right; therefore this shall ye observe and make it your law—to do your business by the voice of the people." (Source)
In other words, God knows that its is the minority of men that want evil, and use tyranny to bring it about. Dictatorship goes contrary to the basic doctrines of the Church. When Church leaders make decisions that go against the will of the General Membership, and the established Doctrines of the Church (IE: Ordaining Openly Gay members), they are in a state of open apostasy.
The membership has the responsibility to seek to replace such leadership. In fact, it is the duty of the General Priesthood, of which I am one, to demand the replacement of such leadership. Failure to do so shows contempt for the Priesthood and Doctrines of the Church. We have the right to police our own. No renegade congregation has the right to make its own rules. If they disagree they should go start a Church of their own.
In order for the laws of common consent to work, the Church must be transparent in conducting its business. This includes its financial dealings. Joseph Smith was also commanded to operate the financial affairs of the Church through common consent:
"71 And there shall not any part of it be used, or taken out of the treasury, only by the voice and common consent of the order." (Source)
The Mormon Church used to give a full financial accounting to its membership. Now it simply reads an auditor's statement saying the Church follows good accounting practices at its General Conference. Major investment decisions, such as the building of the $3 - $8 billion dollar retail mall in downtown Salt Lake, should be voted upon by the General Priesthood of the Church. This is the law that Joseph Smith was commanded to obey.
Whether or not the Church donates to the United Nations, or any other charity, should also be voted upon by the General Priesthood. The General Priesthood should also be asked to sustain the CEO's of the various for-profit organizations of the Church. These should be Priesthood Callings, since they deal with Church resources.
The General Priesthood should also have full financial disclosure of all of the various Church Foundations and a sustaining vote on who manages these funds and how they are spent. This should include the Presidents of the Church Universities and the curriculum taught there. The student body of these universities, that are Priesthood holders, should have the right to sustain or remove those that preside over them. This would include Professors and Football Coaches that they feel are working against the Doctrines of the Church.
If a person raises his hand in opposition to a Church leader, he is currently ostracized and often times calle apostate. This goes against the Doctrines taught by Joseph Smith. In fact, Joseph let the majority vote on whether Sydney Rigdon should remain as his counselor. They voted against him, and he agreed to abide by their decision. (See: History of the Church)
Instead of abiding by the will of the general membership, so-called Priesthood leaders have placed a non-repentant sodomite in a Priesthood position. The general Priesthood of the Church need to make their will known on the subject. In tyrannical fashion, another whitewash is underway. Mitch, after being exposed on this website, changed his "Open Letter" that I quoted from:
Here is the original:
"I am Mitch Mayne, and I am an openly gay Latter-day Saint.
On August 14, 2011, I was sustained as a member of the Bishopric in the Bay Ward of the San Francisco Stake of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormons).
I accepted this calling because of the opportunity it presents me to serve my Savior and my community. And, I accepted this calling as my authentic self: A gay man who loves his Savior, loves his Mormon family, loves his counterparts within the LGBTQ community, and recognizes himself to be completely whole as I am—just as my Father made me.
Up until a year ago, I was in a committed, monogamous relationship with my partner of several years. I wore a wedding band. I attended church and held callings within my ward. But, life is not without its own twists and turns, and I had to leave my partner for a variety of reasons, none of which had to do with pressure from the church. It was, without question, the most painful decision I’ve ever made.
As a result, my current circumstances provide me with a unique opportunity to serve in a Priesthood leadership role within my community. Will that always be the case? Perhaps not. I will likely not be single forever, but I am now by choice—given where I am in my own personal healing process.
I am open to a relationship if fate brings that my way. I am not committing to a lifetime of celibacy; I am committing to adhere to the same standard of behavior that we require of any heterosexual member in a Priesthood leadership position. And, I am committed to being completely forthcoming and transparent about my relationship status with my leadership."
And here is the new one now on his website:
"I am Mitch Mayne, and I am an openly gay Latter-day Saint.
On August 14, 2011, I was sustained as the executive secretary in the Bishopric of the Bay Ward of the San Francisco Stake of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormons).
I accepted this calling because of the opportunity it presents me to serve my Savior and my community. And, I accepted this calling as my authentic self: An openly gay man who loves his Savior, loves his Mormon family, loves his counterparts within the LGBTQ community, and has both desire and opportunity to serve.
Up until a year ago, I was in a committed, monogamous relationship with my partner of several years. I wore a wedding band. I attended church and held callings within my ward. But, life is not without its own twists and turns, and I left that relationship for a variety of reasons, none of which had to do with pressure from the church. It was, without question, the most painful decision I’ve ever made.
As a result, my current circumstances provide me with a unique opportunity to serve in a Priesthood leadership role within my community. I am committing to adhere to the same standard of behavior that we require of any single, heterosexual man in a priesthood leadership position.
Like each of us in the human family, I don’t know what my future will bring; but I do know I will always strive to live my life in accordance what I understand my Savior’s will for me to be. That desire to do what is right—just like my orientation—is embedded into my spiritual DNA. And both are cornerstones to what make me my Father’s son.
I understand that for my gay Mormon brothers and sisters and those who support them both inside and outside our faith, there is special meaning here: For it demonstrates that not only do we as gay Mormons have a home within our faith if we so choose, but that we also have a path.
It is a humbling honor to be asked to serve in this capacity, and I am grateful for a Church leadership that views me as an asset that can help serve our community. Nonetheless, I am simply an ordinary man, blessed to have been placed in extraordinary circumstances. And as such, a man who is willing to bring that experience to bear to help others as they strive to find their place within the gospel, and within the Mormon family."
Getting caught and then changing your story, at the possible behest of those that gave you your position in the Church is not repentance. This guy needs to be removed from his leadership position and so do the individuals who called him. Otherwise, the Church loses even more credibility from those of us that oppose placing Sodomites that are non-repentant into leadership positions.
Inaction by Salt Lake would lead many good members in the Church to believe that they were the ones that engineered this train wreck. You can't have it both ways. You either defend your professed principals, or you sell out to popular opinion. Mitch Mayne's Stake President and Bishop need to be held accountable and removed. Also, the GA that apologized for the Church supporting Proposition 8. Here is another quote from the Book of Mormon:
4 Nephi 1:27 27: "And it came to pass that when two hundred and ten years had passed away there were many churches in the land; yea, there were many churches which professed to know the Christ, and yet they did deny the more parts of his gospel, insomuch that they did receive all manner of wickedness, and did administer that which was sacred unto him to whom it had been forbidden because of unworthiness."
And from Brigham Young:
" And when the spirit of persecution, the spirit of hatred, of wrath, and malice ceases in the world against this people, it will be the time that this people have apostatized and joined hands with the wicked, and never until then; which I pray may never come." (JD 4:326-327)
"There is nothing that would so soon weaken my hope and discourage me as to see this people in full fellowship with the world, and receive no more persecution from them because they are one with them. In such an event, we might bid farewell to the Holy Priesthood with all its blessings, privileges and aids... (JD 10:32)
"When we see the time that we can willingly strike hands and have full fellowship with those who despise the Kingdom of God, know ye then that the Priesthood of the Son of God is out of your possession. Let us be careful how
we make friends with and fellowship unrighteousness, lest the curse of God descends heavily upon us." (JD 10:273)
"When “Mormonism” finds favor with the wicked in this land, it will have gone into the shade; but until the power of the Priesthood is gone, “Mormonism” will never become popular with the wicked." (JD 4:38)
They would come now by thousands and thousands, if the Latter-day Saints were only popular. “What, these honorable men?” Yes, they would say, “I want to be baptized. I admire your industry, and your skill in governing. You have a system of governing that is not to be found anywhere else. You know how to govern cities, territories, or the world, and I would like to join you.”
But take care if you join this people without the love of God in your soul it will do you no good. If they were to do this, they would bring in their sophistry, and introduce that which would poison the innocent and honest and lead them astray. I look at this, and I am satisfied that it will not do for the Lord to make this people popular. Why? Because all hell would want to be in the Church.
The people must be kept where the finger of scorn can be pointed at them. Although it is admitted that we are honest, industrious, truthful, virtuous, self-denying, and, as a community, possess every moral excellence, yet we must be looked upon as ignorant and unworthy, and as the offscouring of society, and be hated by the world.
What is the reason of this? Christ and Baal can not become friends. When I see this people grow and spread and prosper, I feel that there is more danger than when they are in poverty. Being driven from city to city or into the mountains is nothing compared to the danger of our becoming rich and being hailed by outsiders as a first-class community. I am afraid of only one thing. What is that? That we will not live our religion, and that we will partially slide a little from the path of rectitude, and go part of the way to meet our friends. (JD 12:272.)