Wednesday, August 31, 2005

An Awesome E-mail Written In Response To Merrill J. Batemans Appearance On KUER Radio In Utah!!


Fist of all, everyone that is interested, can listen to the show and then make their own conclusions. To me it is obvious that Merrill J. Bateman is a liar. He knows what's really going on but would never admit it. He doesn't want to lose his big fat monthly pay check and his "Mormon celebrity status." I discovered this email tonight and I thought it was awesome, eloquent, to the point and very powerful. I hope you guys enjoy it. It was written by "Free at last" over on the Mormon Recovery Board. We thank you "Free at last" for writing such a great response to a man who knowingly lied on public radio. Thanks for all of your hard work and documentation on this E-mail.


To Whom It May Concern:

I listened to Doug Fabrizio’s interview today with Mormon Elder Merrill J. Bateman. What Bateman did not acknowledge on the radio is the significantly negative impact of the Internet on the church’s growth, member retention, and missionary efforts.

For generations, the information that people received about Mormonism came from church sources: General Authorities like Bateman, missionaries (who were trained to deliver a “package” of propaganda to potential converts), local church leaders and teachers (who relied on church publications like lessons manuals and policy booklets) and church materials such as the Ensign magazine and missionary pamphlets. Relatively few members and investigators knew that “anti-Mormon” literature existed, or had access to such materials. For generations, the LDS church controlled the information about Mormonism that most people received. History has shown that those who control information are able to manipulate the masses.

In the past ten years, the Internet has taken away much of the control of information that the LDS church had since the 19th century. Today, any person with access to the Internet can find out facts about Joseph Smith, the Book of Mormon, early church history, and other aspects of Mormonism that the church has concealed from members and potential converts for generations. For example, by going online, people can learn that Smith not only had polygamous wives, but he married women who were already married, and married girls as young as 14 when he was in his 30’s. With a few clicks of a computer mouse and keystrokes, the church’s carefully crafted image of Joseph Smith as a righteous Prophet of God is blown away by non-faith-promoting facts. For the past 150+ years, the LDS church has worked very hard to conceal these facts from members and potential converts in order to bolster their faith in the church and its senior patriarchal leadership, past and present. Thanks to the Internet, each day Latter-Day Saints and non-members who are investigating Mormonism are discovering truths that seriously conflict with what the church wants them to believe.

Another thing that Bateman did not point out is that the church’s young missionaries are being confronted by investigators who are going on the Internet and learning dark and disturbing facts about Mormonism, and then de-converting the naïve missionaries, who are shocked to learn that what they were taught during their formative years by the church was far from the truth. Smith’s practice of polygamy and polyandry, Brigham Young’s teachings about Blood Atonement and God having sex with Mary to create Jesus, and the church’s racist doctrine regarding blacks and the priesthood are just some of the many faith-shaking facts that people discover online.


The Internet has also made scientific information much more readily available to the general public, which has had, and continues to have, a significantly negative effect on the Mormon Church in terms of member retention and converts. For example, online, people can learn about DNA research (including research done by BYU) that does not support the church’s teaching that the Book of Mormon is a history of two great peoples who lived in the ancient Americas. The DNA data clearly shows that the ancestors of Native Americans did not come from Israel, as the Book of Mormon states and the church has taught since Joseph Smith’s day, but from northeast Asia. The research is so irrefutable that the church is now saying, “Nothing in the Book of Mormon precludes migration into the Americas by peoples of Asiatic origin.” (ref. http://www.lds.org/newsroom/mistakes/0,15331,3885-1-18078,00.html). This official statement contradicts the teachings of Mormon presidents, apostles, and other senior church leaders since 1830 (the year Joseph Smith founded the Mormon Church). Mormons are going on the Internet and learning facts that do not support the “keystone” of the LDS religion (the Book of Mormon), and many other things that they were systematically indoctrinated to believe were “true” and came from God. In many cases, the result is psychological and emotional shock, and a great deal of anger that the church and its senior leadership have abused their trust (and took their money). You can read some of their stories here: http://www.exmormon.org/stories.htm.

Another aspect of the Internet that has significantly impacted the LDS church is the recovery from Mormonism movement and the various related websites. The Recovery from Mormonism website (http://www.exmormon.org/) alone gets 140,000+ hits and hundreds of posts each day. Through online bulletin boards and blogs, Latter-Day Saints are able, often for the first time in their lives, to share their doubts about the LDS church and Mormonism. In the church and their Mormon families they were never allowed to speak their personal truth, never permitted to saying anything that might “rock the boat” of another Mormon’s faith or call into question a church doctrine/teaching. But online, they are able to be real, to be themselves, and to openly discuss their thoughts and feelings about the church and the changing world of Mormonism. There are websites where people can find out how to terminate their membership in the LDS church (http://www.mormonnomore.com/), for gay and lesbian Latter-Day Saints (http://www.affirmation.org/), and to report incidents of Mormon ecclesiastical/priesthood abuse (http://www.mormonalliance.org/). There is an online support group for women who have left the Mormon Church (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/XLDSWomen/) and a popular Mormon humor website (http://www.salamandersociety.com/) with a cheekiness that isn’t permitted on conservative LDS websites.

Yet another aspect of the Internet that is negatively impacting the LDS church is the easy availability and rapid dissemination of non-faith-promoting news. For example, in June of this year, the Salt Lake City Tribune reported that the church was spending $1 billion dollars to buy, renovate, and expand two shopping malls in SLC. Within minutes of this article appearing on the Tribune’s website, a link to it was put up on the Recovery from Mormonism website. Readers saved and e-mailed the article to Mormons and ex-Mormons. The Tribune subsequently nixed the online article. Some Latter-Day Saints who became aware of the news are wondering why they should pay 10+% of their income to a multi-billion dollar church that is asking them to contribute even more in fast offering for the poor and needy while it enlarges its real estate portfolio with a very expensive acquisition. Mormons remember that it was not too long ago that the church cried poor and laid-off hundreds of meetinghouse custodians and other church employees. Saved online news reports help us remember the facts that the church’s senior leadership would prefer members forget (e.g., the forger Mark Hoffman duping Gordon Hinckley and other senior church leaders in the 1980’s).

In closing, the Internet is significantly affecting the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in ways that its patriarchal leadership does not like. People are learning the facts/truth and leaving the church, realizing that their trust has been abused and they have been manipulated. The church’s senior leadership will not publicly acknowledge this reality, but it is happening, and will continue to negatively impact the church’s membership numbers, member activity rates, missionary efforts, and retention of converts.

[My name]
Exit Counselor (Mormonism)

Labels: ,

2 Comments:

At Thursday, September 13, 2007 11:37:00 PM, Anonymous Tyler said...

My heart goes out to you Samuel, for you have fallen away from the Mormon Church by focusing on the negatives and believing the shameless anti-mormon propoganda that is found across the internet. Every question has an answer. But you don't want to hear that. Because you seem to hold it as an article of faith that mormonism is a great evil. I understand that good, rational people leave the church for legitimate reasons. What I don't understand is why you have decided to devote so much time and energy to bringing down something that brings so many people, so much joy. I know at one point that you knew (or thought) that it was true. Just give the mormon church a little slack. There are better things to do with your time then tear a great religion down. I know your so much more than that. I just don't know why some people who leave the church can't leave it alone. God loves you, and you have infinite potential. Never forget that.

 
At Monday, February 25, 2013 11:22:00 AM, Blogger John Thorp said...

i don't think you should have to "cut slack" to a belief system of any kind, be it a religion, a democracy, or a philosophy (et al). these systems and our adherence to them should be ABSOLUTELY rigorous.

 

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 2.5 License.

border=0

Get your own map at hit2map.com