Mission rules are now just suggestions.

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Spicy McHaggis
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Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by Spicy McHaggis » Tue Nov 19, 2019 2:03 pm

I saw an article on KSL.com a few days ago, It said mission rules are now no longer meant to be taken as a hardline black & white. The mission kids can now take a softer approach at the rule book.

Missions may be slowly becoming less and less culty. When I was out missions fell into the cult category at 100% rate. Now with the kids being able to talk to their parents every week and have a softer, more realistic look at the rules they are slowly making missions better.

https://www.ksl.com/article/46676169/ne ... principles

When I was out, we were constantly told if we didn't follow the rules 100% then we would never have the spirit and would never be successful. In fact we were always told if we didn't have success then it was assumed we just weren't being good enough.

This is another change for good, but far too many of us constantly felt guilty for the old approach.

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Red Ryder
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by Red Ryder » Tue Nov 19, 2019 2:38 pm

I think this is coming from the left side of the Mormon mouth where PR, gaslighting, and obfuscation is spoken.

The right side of the Mormon mouth continues to instill fear, demand obedience, and checks your underwear for the authorized pattern.

The Missionary program is showing huge signs of obsolescence so these changes are made to prop up a failing program.
Those who do not move do not notice their chains. —Rosa Luxemburg

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Palerider
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by Palerider » Tue Nov 19, 2019 2:41 pm

I read the church release on this. They're coloring it to look like they want missionaries to be more self-disciplined as disciples of Christ. More "principle" oriented than rule oriented.

They'd really like us to believe this is the "revelation" for our time. The reality is it's an indictment of the ways of the past. They're simply adjusting to kids who can't handle the same level of external discipline that kids of the past could.

The church is totally being run like a business,
"There is but one straight course, and that is to seek truth and pursue it steadily."

"Truth will ultimately prevail where there is pains to bring it to light."

George Washington

lostinmiddlemormonism
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by lostinmiddlemormonism » Tue Nov 19, 2019 5:45 pm

Palerider wrote:
Tue Nov 19, 2019 2:41 pm

The church is totally being run like a business,
Because that's what it is.

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moksha
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by moksha » Tue Nov 19, 2019 6:47 pm

Red Ryder wrote:
Tue Nov 19, 2019 2:38 pm
The right side of the Mormon mouth continues to instill fear, demand obedience, and checks your underwear for the authorized pattern.
This might be similar to Bishop Roulette. The guiding principle here will be "missions are like a box of chocolates" you never know what you will get.
Good faith does not require evidence, but it also does not turn a blind eye to that evidence. Otherwise, it becomes misplaced faith.
-- Moksha

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Palerider
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by Palerider » Tue Nov 19, 2019 7:36 pm

moksha wrote:
Tue Nov 19, 2019 6:47 pm
Red Ryder wrote:
Tue Nov 19, 2019 2:38 pm
The right side of the Mormon mouth continues to instill fear, demand obedience, and checks your underwear for the authorized pattern.
This might be similar to Bishop Roulette. The guiding principle here will be "missions are like a box of chocolates" you never know what you will get.
The article did mention that a number of mission presidents did have questions regarding whether this was really the direction the church wanted to be taking. Apparently SLC essentially informed them that there was good reasoning behind the decision and they just needed to follow the program. So you might be right. The penchant for following the rules may depend on which mission president you get.
"There is but one straight course, and that is to seek truth and pursue it steadily."

"Truth will ultimately prevail where there is pains to bring it to light."

George Washington

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Raylan Givens
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by Raylan Givens » Tue Nov 19, 2019 10:42 pm

My MP was all about trying to skirt the rules. He was mad they wouldn’t let him bring his Harley on his mission.

Each time I see these change in guidelines I have two thoughts.
1. I am happy, these kids need to be themselves
2. Super mad, that I didn’t have agency to choose what is best for me/companions and investigators.
"Ah, you know, I think you use the Bible to do whatever the hell you like" - Raylan Givens

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1smartdodog
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by 1smartdodog » Wed Nov 20, 2019 12:32 pm

Let the P Day festivities begin.


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Corsair
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by Corsair » Wed Nov 20, 2019 1:56 pm

1smartdodog wrote:
Wed Nov 20, 2019 12:32 pm
Let the P Day festivities begin.
The P-Day festivities will end in different ways in each mission. Some will end after the mission president says, "no more bungie jumping". Some missionaries will be told that it is still against the rules to go swimming. Some hardline missions will seem like, "Fun detected! Return to 1950s style P-Day activities."
Red Ryder wrote:
Tue Nov 19, 2019 2:38 pm
I think this is coming from the left side of the Mormon mouth where PR, gaslighting, and obfuscation is spoken.

The right side of the Mormon mouth continues to instill fear, demand obedience, and checks your underwear for the authorized pattern.
I agree. Mission presidents are the types that want either a promotion to Seventy or, at the very least, want to stay out of any possibly news headline for shenanigans or youthful exuberance. Mission presidents have the absolute power to send a missionary home without a newly signed temple recommend to a stern bishop and disappointed parents. That trumps anything that church PR would ever say.

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1smartdodog
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by 1smartdodog » Wed Nov 20, 2019 2:33 pm

After thinking some more this can go one of two ways. Either more freedom lets missionaries loosen up some so the wont be so desperate to act like teenagers, or they act more like teenagers on steroids. Given my mission experience I think the latter.



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“Five percent of the people think; ten percent of the people think they think; and the other eighty-five percent would rather die than think.”
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2bizE
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by 2bizE » Wed Nov 20, 2019 4:56 pm

I bet there will still be plenty of shame and guilt to go along with these “suggestions”
~2bizE

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blazerb
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by blazerb » Wed Nov 20, 2019 5:21 pm

Red Ryder wrote:
Tue Nov 19, 2019 2:38 pm
I think this is coming from the left side of the Mormon mouth where PR, gaslighting, and obfuscation is spoken.

The right side of the Mormon mouth continues to instill fear, demand obedience, and checks your underwear for the authorized pattern.

The Missionary program is showing huge signs of obsolescence so these changes are made to prop up a failing program.
I think you're right. This is the picture the GA's want to project to the world. At the zone conferences, it will still be, "we are not baptizing because you are . . . ."

Lloyd Christmas
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by Lloyd Christmas » Wed Nov 20, 2019 7:53 pm

I remember when we had a new mission president come in and change a lot of rules, one in particular was changing the old music rule of anything alllowed that invited the spirit, to no music at all, not even MoTab. So the missionaries went from listening to Christian rock to nothing. There was a lot of kickback, so the mission president rephrased to make it not a rule, but a suggested sacrifice. I had a brand new companion eager to make the sacrifice, and this approach was probably stronger on the guilt factor than a rule.

I'll never forget one time I got in the mission presidents car with him, and as I turned it on, a normal radio station came on and he quickly turned it off like he was covering his tracks. It made me a little sick to think he had set these suggested sacrifices then wasn't living them himself. Maybe it was the Mrs, but still.

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moksha
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by moksha » Thu Nov 21, 2019 12:22 am

Lloyd Christmas wrote:
Wed Nov 20, 2019 7:53 pm
It made me a little sick to think he had set these suggested sacrifices then wasn't living them himself. Maybe it was the Mrs, but still.
Just be glad the mission president did not require you to hop on one foot everywhere you went. There was a multitude of strange notions he could have inflicted on you as a strict rule or ridiculous sacrifice. Some could be harmless like saying the words "moisture, amen" at the end of each sentence and some could have been downright dangerous like proselyting in the middle of a busy intersection (although in a rural South American setting with only wooden carts and burros on the road the risk might be minimal).
Good faith does not require evidence, but it also does not turn a blind eye to that evidence. Otherwise, it becomes misplaced faith.
-- Moksha

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Yobispo
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by Yobispo » Thu Nov 21, 2019 9:25 am

Palerider wrote:
Tue Nov 19, 2019 2:41 pm
The reality is it's an indictment of the ways of the past.
Well said, and could be applied to many many changes, from the big ones (race/priesthood+temple, polygamy, temple rituals) to the smaller stuff (not talking to parents for 2 years, 3 hour church, "inspired" programs like home teaching).

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fetchface
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by fetchface » Thu Nov 21, 2019 9:33 am

Now, instead of needing to be 100% obedient to the rules to have the spirit, missionaries will need to be 100% obedient to the principles to have the spirit.

I'm skeptical that this will represent any change at all. I think that obedience will still be highly emphasized on missions and that missionaries will be made to feel guilty when they are not obedient to arbitrary rules, whether they are called rules or not. In a way, those who are prone to wonder whether they are good enough, like I was at that age, will be driven to keep "principles" in an overly-strict manner in order to try to become "good-enough."

That's the think that pisses me off about the church. At no point will they ever tell you that you are a good boy or girl. They'll always leave you wondering...
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Rob4Hope
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by Rob4Hope » Thu Nov 21, 2019 1:11 pm

During my mission time, our traveling GA told us it was a toss-up between who had the strictest mission, us or one other mission. We weren't allowed to leave the flat without our whites,...including doing laundry or anything else. Music was allowed, but ONLY MO-TAB. And, there were a bunch of other things.

I know missionaries who went home emotionally and mentally destroyed,...and I mean therapy and PTSD problems that were pretty nasty. A few of those guys didn't recover, or at least last time we had contact.

Pretty sad.

A church that says it will save people, and then destroys its young people with guilt and devastating cult activities? Its this stuff that makes me want to skip the Celestial Kingdom totally. I would rather be a "TK Smoothy" and laugh a little than be controlled and living with control monsters.

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Hagoth
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by Hagoth » Fri Nov 22, 2019 7:48 am

I wonder if this is a response to the fact that 50% of returned missionaries are leaving the church or becoming inactive or that 1/3 or missionaries come home early, mostly for mental health reasons and for "health" reasons that are often cover stories for underlying depression or anxiety.

I also wonder whether loosening up the rules will have the effect of keeping missionaries in the field and in the church, or will give them a little more mental space to distance themselves earlier.
“The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” -Mark Twain

Jesus: "The Kingdom of God is within you." The Buddha: "Be your own light."

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Just This Guy
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by Just This Guy » Fri Nov 22, 2019 8:52 am

But are they really suggestions?

So when a missionary spends an afternoon alone with a girl, even if nothing major happened, but it is still a violation of accepted behavior, and they want to send him home in disgrace, is "It is not a rule, only a suggestion and I felt that that was the best option for the situation" going to get him off of the charges?

That is what the real question is. Is this just lipstick on public perception, like the so-called reversal of the PoX, or a real change? I am leaningtowards the former.
"The story so far: In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move." -- Douglas Adams

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Random
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Re: Mission rules are now just suggestions.

Post by Random » Sun Nov 24, 2019 6:09 pm

Just This Guy wrote:
Fri Nov 22, 2019 8:52 am
But are they really suggestions?
Sure they are. Like wearing a suit to meetings is a suggestion. Like females having only one set of earrings and males having none is a suggestion. I'm sure there are a lot of examples of "suggestions" that are actually treated as God's own very strict commandment, and disobeying of such will send you to hell. :roll:

And, you know, like you can vote opposed without getting in trouble.
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.
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