Slippery slope data

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MalcolmVillager
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Slippery slope data

Post by MalcolmVillager » Sun May 28, 2017 9:08 am

Interesting trends in my ward in the MorCor during the last 16 months. It is only one ward, but I wonder.

Sacrament attendance 11% drop, endowed members with TR 20% drop, PH attendance 14% drop, RS attendance 27% drop. I can imagine tithing has dropped similarly.

I have also seen families take their names off the records so the numerator has decreased, but so has the denominator, which softens the perceived drop.

I dont know if it is a cultural shift towards secularism or the information age that is doing it, but Mormonism is certainly not immune to the growing infection of the "nones".

Members want to come and mourn and meditate together. Are you seeing similar things in your corner of the vineyard? What is driving some of us away? What do you guys feel are the greatest reasons for the declining participation?

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Red Ryder
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by Red Ryder » Sun May 28, 2017 9:57 am

Repetition?

Cell phones and high speed internet have stolen our attentions.
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SeeNoEvil
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by SeeNoEvil » Sun May 28, 2017 10:22 am

We live in the age of technology and information. Any question we have the answer is right at our fingertips. How easy it is to search for any question about the church and when we do, "OMG! look what we find!" I think the church has put the nail in their own coffin by drastically underestimating the power and intelligence of our generation and the generations coming up. No longer do the churches archaic ideas and practices apply to a generation of critical thinkers and information seekers. How can they possibly expect today's congregation to relate to to their 1950's ideology? No wonder the numbers are down. I think we have seen the last of any kind of growing attendance percentages. What we will see are the alarming increases in those leaving the church.
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alas
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by alas » Sun May 28, 2017 11:09 am

I have thought about the "generational" reasons that some give for why people are leaving and I don't think it is a generational difference, but a difference in what is available.

For example, my parents were unbelievers, but they both stayed in the closet all their lives. Six months before she died, my mother confessed to me that she had read No Man Knows My History before I was born, and could not believe in JS as prophet. So, that is she read a testimony destroying book 66 years ago, but never admitted to anyone for 60+ years that she no longer believed.

I did pretty much the same thing for 30+ years...until there was an internet for getting support from other nonbelievers. For those thirty years, I felt alone and half crazy to be the only one that I knew of who just couldn't make myself believe.

So, let's not say that milenials are smarter or have better critical thinking skills. What milenials have that baby boomers did not have is instant information when they go looking. And they have online support groups that tell them they are not alone and not crazy or evil to be thinking what they are thinking.

Psychological studies in peer pressure say that some 60 percent of people cave to peer pressure when they are the only one believing something. Most of those actually change their thinking to believe what the group says rather than what their own eyes and evidence tell them. Others quietly go along with the group, but they know they are agreeing with the group, but they keep believing they are correct. It is a rare individual who can stand up to the group and say what they believe when they are alone. But give them one other who says, no, I think the group is wrong and those quiet ones jump on board because they would rather believe their own eyes, than just go along with the group.

So, what the Internet provides is that second voice that dares to disagree with the group and then that reinforces what our logic tells us and we have the courage to know we are correct instead of just crazy. My mother didn't have that and I didn't for the first 30 years of being an unbeliever, so we did not dare voice our unbelief.

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Jinx
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by Jinx » Sun May 28, 2017 12:47 pm

Alas is absolutely right. "The truth is out there" and easy to find, and the company of other searchers makes it okay to disbelieve. We are not alone and we may be growing into a majority.
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Enough
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by Enough » Sun May 28, 2017 2:19 pm

MV: Maybe Stake President needs to come up with 5 or 6 new Stake Goals. Doesn't seem like his old list is working out so well.

rosebud
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by rosebud » Sun May 28, 2017 6:09 pm

So, what the Internet provides is that second voice that dares to disagree with the group and then that reinforces what our logic tells us and we have the courage to know we are correct instead of just crazy. My mother didn't have that and I didn't for the first 30 years of being an unbeliever, so we did not dare voice our unbelief.
[/quote]

So true!!! My shelf came crashing down after reading someone else's exit story. I wasn't looking for it. I was on their blog to read about their family travels. However, the dad's Mormon exit story was one of his most popular posts so I had a look. I had one last belief I was clinging to and his logical explanation helped me reconcile it.

After that I allowed myself to read anything I wanted even if I previously would have considered it "anti." Having all those other voices say exactly what I had been thinking that last 3 years was incredible.

I am just older than the millennial generation. The internet was absolutely pivotal for me and I think it will continue to pull members away for many years to come.

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LostGirl
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by LostGirl » Mon May 29, 2017 1:42 am

what the Internet provides is that second voice that dares to disagree with the group and then that reinforces what our logic tells us and we have the courage to know we are correct instead of just crazy
This is so very true. I actually thought I was alone until I found people like the NOMs here. You validated my feelings and my conclusions and gave me the motivation to keep reading and keep thinking rather than just sticking my head in the sand and resigning myself to a lifetime of silence.

Your stories gave me the courage to express my concerns to my spouse and to connect with an extended family member who no longer attends.

So it was the boredom and the dishonesty and the hypocrisy that made me want to leave, but it was the resources and the people I found on the internet that have provided the impetus to do something about it.

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MalcolmVillager
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by MalcolmVillager » Mon May 29, 2017 9:03 am

Enough wrote:
Sun May 28, 2017 2:19 pm
MV: Maybe Stake President needs to come up with 5 or 6 new Stake Goals. Doesn't seem like his old list is working out so well.
Enough. You are right there. Our BP will change in 2 weeks (I hear) and SP has one more year. I think they are done. Not that these numbers are their fault or even something they can control.

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Random
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by Random » Tue Jun 06, 2017 10:24 pm

alas wrote:
Sun May 28, 2017 11:09 am
Psychological studies in peer pressure say that some 60 percent of people cave to peer pressure when they are the only one believing something. Most of those actually change their thinking to believe what the group says rather than what their own eyes and evidence tell them. Others quietly go along with the group, but they know they are agreeing with the group, but they keep believing they are correct. It is a rare individual who can stand up to the group and say what they believe when they are alone.
This sounds like a key to the discussion on another thread about the Q12 +3. If any come in, have their eyes opened (find out, no, they don't see Jesus; no, these guys are like any others: some are creeps and self-centered and some are nice and considerate of others), what do they do? Peer pressure could certainly be part of why they don't speak out.
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
PK

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Random
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by Random » Tue Jun 06, 2017 10:30 pm

Though my path and beliefs are somewhat different than most on here, I have to say that I am where I'm at because of the internet, and the people I met there. It was also on the internet that I was convinced that I had been paying tithing wrong (two long threads on LDSFF). And, it was on the internet that I was first confronted with the idea that if I committed adultery, the only people I needed to confess it to would be God and my spouse - that the Church had no place in my confessions or repentance (LDSAnarchy).
LostGirl wrote:
Mon May 29, 2017 1:42 am
what the Internet provides is that second voice that dares to disagree with the group and then that reinforces what our logic tells us and we have the courage to know we are correct instead of just crazy
This is so very true. I actually thought I was alone until I found people like the NOMs here. You validated my feelings and my conclusions and gave me the motivation to keep reading and keep thinking rather than just sticking my head in the sand and resigning myself to a lifetime of silence.

Your stories gave me the courage to express my concerns to my spouse and to connect with an extended family member who no longer attends.

So it was the boredom and the dishonesty and the hypocrisy that made me want to leave, but it was the resources and the people I found on the internet that have provided the impetus to do something about it.
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
PK

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Random
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by Random » Fri Jan 06, 2023 7:05 pm

Random wrote:
Tue Jun 06, 2017 10:30 pm
Though my path and beliefs are somewhat different than most on here, I have to say that I am where I'm at because of the internet, and the people I met there. It was also on the internet that I was convinced that I had been paying tithing wrong (two long threads on LDSFF). And, it was on the internet that I was first confronted with the idea that if I committed adultery, the only people I needed to confess it to would be God and my spouse - that the Church had no place in my confessions or repentance (LDSAnarchy).
LostGirl wrote:
Mon May 29, 2017 1:42 am
what the Internet provides is that second voice that dares to disagree with the group and then that reinforces what our logic tells us and we have the courage to know we are correct instead of just crazy
This is so very true. I actually thought I was alone until I found people like the NOMs here. You validated my feelings and my conclusions and gave me the motivation to keep reading and keep thinking rather than just sticking my head in the sand and resigning myself to a lifetime of silence.

Your stories gave me the courage to express my concerns to my spouse and to connect with an extended family member who no longer attends.

So it was the boredom and the dishonesty and the hypocrisy that made me want to leave, but it was the resources and the people I found on the internet that have provided the impetus to do something about it.
Major thread killer. :lol: (I've come across several threads where I apparently killed it. Lol)
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
PK

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Hagoth
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by Hagoth » Sun Jan 08, 2023 7:02 am

Random wrote:
Fri Jan 06, 2023 7:05 pm
Major thread killer. :lol: (I've come across several threads where I apparently killed it. Lol)
Hilarious! In my early NOM days I was so aware of killing threads that I kept quiet for a while just to see if there were other serial killers out there.

But concerning the original topic, I have heard a lot of anecdotal stories about people who just didn't come back after COVID showed them they can live without church, people who redirected tithing to other charities when they learned about Ensign Peak, and people who started drinking tea and coffee when they learned how healthy it is. For example: Mrs. Hagoth told the bishop to give her the new Zoom link for sacrament meeting, which they changed to force people back into the building, because she would either attend that way or not at all.

Note: somebody PLEASE respond, so I don't kill this one again.
“The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” -Mark Twain

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alas
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by alas » Sun Jan 08, 2023 10:57 am

Hagoth wrote:
Sun Jan 08, 2023 7:02 am
Random wrote:
Fri Jan 06, 2023 7:05 pm
Major thread killer. :lol: (I've come across several threads where I apparently killed it. Lol)
Hilarious! In my early NOM days I was so aware of killing threads that I kept quiet for a while just to see if there were other serial killers out there.

But concerning the original topic, I have heard a lot of anecdotal stories about people who just didn't come back after COVID showed them they can live without church, people who redirected tithing to other charities when they learned about Ensign Peak, and people who started drinking tea and coffee when they learned how healthy it is. For example: Mrs. Hagoth told the bishop to give her the new Zoom link for sacrament meeting, which they changed to force people back into the building, because she would either attend that way or not at all.

Note: somebody PLEASE respond, so I don't kill this one again.
I think there are a few ways that threads end. One is when someone says something so profound that there is just nothing left to say. I have sometimes read a thread and found that kind of comment and it seems a shame to add anything because it might detract from the wonderful thought.

The other of course is to say something so stupid that it leaves people speechless.

But all threads kind of run their course and eventually die and somebody will be there at the final moments, so to speak. But they don’t cause it, they are sort of just the last on the screen. Or, someone is just late. Last comments are frequently by people who are just slow to read and respond.


As too the original topic, MV noticed that more women had stopped attending RS. I think women leaving is getting more common now than years ago. It used to be that men were most often inactive with faithful wives, but now women are leaving faster than men.

My DIL has all but quit attending and her husband, our son s expressing major doubts. The last of our children to defect. My faithful husband is now the only family member paying tithing, wearing garments all the time, following WOW. Our son is on the high council, but says he is having a supper hard time giving faithful talks. There is just too much he questions. And their oldest and only son has already said he will not go on a mission. Their girls, no chance.

Edited to add, your welcome Hagoth. And if no one comments, I will have to conclude my comment was so profound there was just nothing to add.

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jfro18
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by jfro18 » Sun Jan 08, 2023 11:11 am

I've killed so many threads and group chats that I no longer feel it - I'm like Dexter when it comes to killing off threads!

But to Hagoth's and Alas' points, we visited my in-laws in AZ last week and my mother in law was talking about how many people have not returned since COVID and she was perplexed. My wife said that her ward hasn't lost as many here, but we're in an area with so few Mormons that it might have different dynamics plus my wife is speaking about one ward while my in laws were talking about their entire AZ area.

So it seems to be a real issue that people are just not coming back and I think the availability of info on Mormon truth claims is not going to make keeping the youth any easier going forward.

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nibbler
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by nibbler » Sun Jan 08, 2023 4:16 pm

MalcolmVillager wrote:
Sun May 28, 2017 9:08 am
Sacrament attendance 11% drop, endowed members with TR 20% drop, PH attendance 14% drop, RS attendance 27% drop. I can imagine tithing has dropped similarly.
That's quite a lot, like too much to simply ignore a lot. I think more and more people are finding less and less value in the experience.

The glue that held most of the experience together was a sense of obligation or duty. Duty, obligation, and "because you have to" are less effective reasons than they once were. Ordinarily I'd say that leaders need better reasons for people to come to church but I'm struggling to think of what those reasons could be. I'm not going to mince words, PH meeting is brain death. What's a good reason that you could give someone to convince them to experience brain death?

Historically we've approached the problem by castigating members, they're lesser for not showing up for brain death. I think more recently they've tired to alter the experience, which is at least the right direction. The issue is that the changes that were made produced the exact same experience, just a little less of it. Three hours of brain death, that's gonna be a no from me dawg. What's that, it's only two hours of brain death now? Where do I sign up?!?! See? Doesn't work.

Obviously all religions are taking a hit, so maybe we're just in a cycle where the churches just have to take one for the team.

I don't have the answers, I'm just as bored as the limits of boredom can be by the experience and I know I'm not alone. Attend sacrament? Who cares. Get a TR? Who cares. PH? Lol, don't get me started. RS? The ladies will have to chime in on that one but from the numbers you cite they're not having it more than any other group.

I think leaders are still in that mode where they're trying to sell people a need that the church currently fills rather than being in the business of finding out what people's needs are and changing the church to meet those needs.
We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.
– Anais Nin

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Mormorrisey
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by Mormorrisey » Mon Jan 09, 2023 10:57 am

I'm with everyone else here - technology was the dagger, and the pandemic was the coup de grace. I think sitting at home made SO MANY people realize the uselessness of high demand religiosity.

And the very nature of the internet has changed how the church is viewed. In my day, "anti-Mormon" material was dispersed by evangelicals trying to get people into their own cult, not simply to provide any historical/sociological information about the church. This has entirely changed, that real historians, psychologists and sociologists are ruminating about the affects of Mormonism, using facts as their weapons. This has been the biggest change I have seen, and things are better because of it.

It is a slippery slope, and like most slopes, it's all downhill from here.
"And I don't need you...or, your homespun philosophies."
"And when you try to break my spirit, it won't work, because there's nothing left to break."

malkie
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by malkie » Wed Jan 11, 2023 2:11 pm

Hagoth wrote:
Sun Jan 08, 2023 7:02 am
Random wrote:
Fri Jan 06, 2023 7:05 pm
Major thread killer. :lol: (I've come across several threads where I apparently killed it. Lol)
Hilarious! In my early NOM days I was so aware of killing threads that I kept quiet for a while just to see if there were other serial killers out there.

But concerning the original topic, I have heard a lot of anecdotal stories about people who just didn't come back after COVID showed them they can live without church, people who redirected tithing to other charities when they learned about Ensign Peak, and people who started drinking tea and coffee when they learned how healthy it is. For example: Mrs. Hagoth told the bishop to give her the new Zoom link for sacrament meeting, which they changed to force people back into the building, because she would either attend that way or not at all.

Note: somebody PLEASE respond, so I don't kill this one again.
Was it here, or on the old MormonDiscussions (now DiscusMormonism) board, that someone was able to add a thread-kill percentage to the list of users?
aka malkie

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Random
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by Random » Fri Jan 13, 2023 6:32 pm

I go to LDSFF a lot and when the cov stuff was in full swing with churches closed, I noticed many believers really liked the new way of going to church. They liked getting up when they wanted, not having to fight with kids (including teenagers) to get dressed, and their meetings had more light and Spirit in them. Most people were loathe to return when the churches opened again. Some wanted to return, some returned but didn't really want to, and most did not return at all.

It's almost as if God sent cov and the lockdowns to teach people that they really didn't need an organized entity to go through to reach Jesus. :? 8-)
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
PK

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Random
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Re: Slippery slope data

Post by Random » Fri Jan 13, 2023 6:34 pm

malkie wrote:
Wed Jan 11, 2023 2:11 pm
Was it here, or on the old MormonDiscussions (now DiscusMormonism) board, that someone was able to add a thread-kill percentage to the list of users?
I don't remember seeing it here. Sounds like an interesting thing to add.
There are 2 Gods. One who created us. The other you created. The God you made up is just like you-thrives on flattery-makes you live in fear.

Believe in the God who created us. And the God you created should be abolished.
PK

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