Thursday, January 17, 2019

Meet the Fatherless Mormon




I am a Fatherless Mormon by JAR





There is a lot of unpacking to do with that statement; let me begin by expressing my understanding of a couple of key items.

First, I understand that the Church very recently shifted away from using the term “Mormon.” Fortunately for us little people, the restrictions of having to change our vernacular are less draconian than anything published officially. Besides, “Fatherless Mormon” rolls off the tongue much better than “Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints Who was Raised in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints by a Single Mother Who was Also A Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.”

Second, I understand that nobody is technically fatherless (although it is in the Bible--just saying). Spare me the platitudes about “you always have your Father in Heaven” blah, blah, blah… That’s not much of a consolation to a young boy wondering why other kids are baptized by their dads; a deacon trying to understand what it means to hold the priesthood; or a priest struggling--and ultimately losing--to fight the temptations of the world with no righteous example of priesthood leadership in the home. True: I can look back now and understand that Heavenly Father has always been there for me; but at the moment, I found it impossible to see an eternal perspective.

Monday, December 31, 2018

Strengthening The Men In The Elders Quorum






By The MMM Brain Trust



It’s not a very well-kept secret that the men as a whole in the church are struggling.  There are more active women than men.  In the 20-30 age range there are more single women, than single men. More families are without fathers in the home them without mothers in the home. And the inactivity rate for men coming out of the young men’s program is staggering high. We have some issues with us as Modern Mormon Men. The Church has been talking about this for a few years now. I even think that this was one of the main reasons for the changes to the Elders Quorum this year. We are not in defcon 5 by any means, but we are certainly due for a course correction to increase / change the way we strengthen ourselves and our brothers in the church.
This is a group article. A bunch of us here at MMM some how started discussing the topic and we came up with a set of six points. Three that address fallacies with the way we and the church assume the adult men in the church are getting spiritually feed. And three items that wards and quorums already have the authority to do according to the handbook that can be changed.

Thursday, December 20, 2018

“Two Journeys” - by Rob Trishman



(One of The Best Christmas Poems We Have Ever Read.)

“Two Journeys” - by Rob Trishman

The journey to the manger
The journey to the cross
One led to the start of life
The other, to its loss.

Each journey was filled with pain,
Both His, and His mother's.
Her pain so she could bear Him,
His pain to bear up others.

Each journey was filled with doubt
Why were all the inn rooms taken?
He cried for help in that dark hour.
Had God His Son forsaken?

Each journey had rejection
Unwelcome in any place.
Nowhere for them to stay and rest.
Crowds spitting in his face.

Because of these two journeys,
He knows hard roads we take.
The pain, doubt, and rejection,
And how our hearts will ache.

He meets us on the thorny path,
In lonely times of fear,
In soul-crushing uncertainty,
Remember, He is near.

The journey to His death,
And the journey to His birth
Both difficult, but completed
Because of our souls’ worth.

And thus our mortal journey
So difficult to face.
Yet He who said, ‘I am the way’
Carries us with His grace.

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

TOP 12 CHANGES FROM CHURCH HQ THIS YEAR



by RB Mac


Merry Christmas! Its been a huge year of change in Mormon Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints land.  So, the guys over here at MMM thought we would bring you some Christmas cheer in the form of the twelve days of Christmas, featuring the twelve biggest changes in the church over the year. 



On the first day of Christmas the Mormon Church gave to me…. A new first presidency!

If we are going to talk about this new first presidency, we have to talk about what came before it, way before it and that was Nelson and Oaks. Two bros, the highest-ranking Modern Mormon Men.   Bob Mims at the Salt Lake tribune put it this way “There they always were. The lawyer and the Doctor. The judge and the surgeon. The apostle and the… apostle.” These two are close, besties, I think the term Bromance is appropriate. I am willing to make you a bet that somewhere between five and ten years ago President Nelson and President Oaks hunkered down in a cabin by Bear Lake, Utah in a brainstorming session (probably over a raspberry shake) about all the changes they would make once Nelson became prophet.   I am also willing to bet they wrote down on something like, a paper towel, all the things they are going to change.  I am dead serious, stuff is just rolling out too fast, this has been planned for a long time. And every time something new rolls out I bet they have a little victory party in Nelsons office where they pull out the paper towel and cross of the item that just changed, then they probably toast their success with a Chery Coke.    And don’t forget about Eyring, poor guy! Imagine how hard it must be to try to reign in Nelson and Oaks!

(Note: December 1 we posted about upcoming changes in the church and how change is supported by the theorem of our faith.  Check it out.)


Wednesday, December 12, 2018

DeadPool Movie Poster








I kind of think that a graduate of the graphic arts department at BYU got hired to do a movie poster and while struggling for a concept late one night in his living room he looked up and had a vision (saw the painting on his wall).  I bet you a thousand bucks his wife slapped him with a rolled-up Ensign when she saw his "new" poster!

What does everyone think?  Heck there is even a change.org petition on it if you want to really get involved.  Or you can just laugh at the whole thing.  Or you can go to the change.org petition and laugh at the comments, which is currently what I doing.

Fun Fact: While the LDS painting was commissioned by the Church it was painted by a Seventh Day Adventist.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Our New LDS Youth Programs (Part 1)



by: RB Mac




Yesterday I had an amazing experience.  

I was invited to do a presentation at Ellington Joint Reserve Base. Its a multipurpose base in Houston Texas that serves NASA, the Coast Guard and acts as a military base for reserve units of each branch. The entire experience was amazingly impressive.

About twenty minutes before I was scheduled to arrive, I got a text from a Petty Officer in the unit I was going to visit.
Petty Officer: “Sir, just wanted to confirm your arrival time?” 
I answered: “I’ll be there a bit early in about five minutes”
Petty Officer: “That’s fantastic, the guards at the security gate are expecting you and have directions for you to our building. This is my cell, please let me know if there are any issues”

I got to the security gate, presented my ID. The guard said they were expecting me and handed me a customized map of where I was to go. 

The map guided me perfectly to the building and as I was getting out of my car was greeted by the Petty Officer and a Seaman. The seaman immediately asked to carry my bag and then politely took it from me.  There was no option, he was going to carry my bag.  I had a few more things in my truck for the presentation and in about two minutes four very fit, very well-behaved gentlemen were carrying the contents of my truck into the presentation room. I got to the front door of the building and immediately I was greeted by another sailor who opened the door for me, “good afternoon sir my name is seaman Yadul, welcome to Ellington we are all looking forward to your presentation”.  

Once to the room the four sailors immediately started to setup my presentation.  I did not give them instructions and if they had a question they asked, but for the most part they looked at what I had brought with me, accessed the items and set them up just as I would have. I was absolutely shocked. I have done hundreds of presentations all over the world, this level of competency and professionalism was a first.

Just as we were finishing setup the Chief walked in, introduced himself, thanked me for coming and explained that in about an hour Airforce One was landing to take the body of President Bush 41 to Washington DC for the Funeral. He then said “Sir, with your permission I would like to interrupt the presentation to take the entire unit out to the landing deck to see Airforce One land and pay our respects, if you would like we would love you to join us.” 

Do I want to stand on a runway while Airforce one lands and then see them prep the plane for the late president and his family?  YA I do!

Just then the unit of about thirty people filed into the room from lunch, everyone introduced themselves and welcomed me.  The Petty Officer stood up, the room immediately went silent. He walked to the front of the room and introduced me to the unit.  I started what was a rather technical presentation.  About thirty minutes latter the Chief walked in, waited for a natural break in my speech, then said it was time for Airforce One to land.  Without instruction and in almost perfect order the unit emptied the room, walked down the hallway, out the building, over to a hanger, through the hanger, out the big door and onto the runway.  There about three hundred yards in front of me Airforce one landed.  I could feel the wind the landing made, it was awesome! It then taxied around us and parked about five hundred yards away next to a long line of black suburban’s, buses and a hearse.  The unit was at ease (no president in the plane) but they were near silent talking in whispers.  None of them were old enough to have even been alive when Bush 41 was president, but I heard several of them say “I read this about him” or “do you know ___ about him”. You could feel the level of respect they had for Bush 41.  It was actually very touching.

Sunday, December 2, 2018

President Nelsons charge to take our vitamin pills and the theorem of our faith.







by RB Mac




Have you ever wondered how President Nelson, a Prophet of God, warns you in essence that the proverbial defecation is about to hit the rotary oscillator (the crap is about the hit the fan)?  He says it like this:  "There's much more to come…Wait until next year, eat your vitamin pills, get your rest”.
Change is a big deal especially in theology, where most religions including ours, are known more for not changing then they are for any type of change at all.  Few things are more consistent in the world than religion. But guess what, that is not how our religion was setup.  The theorem of our faith is very, very different.

It sounds a little cold to describe part of one’s faith as a theorem, but that’s really the way it is.  Every faith in the world has a logic to it.  The fun part is that in the world of religion, is each church gets to make up its own logic.  Its very own cause and effect, its own axiom set if you will.  I am not just talking about a logic that religions use to deduce rules that govern behavior.  But a rule of logic (theorem) by which their very beliefs are derived. 

This is a lesson I learned in a theology class, we were required to take in high school. As much as I love seminary, it is not in any stretch, a serious class of theology!  Take your imagination into one of my memories.  You show up to school and the first lecture you get, is on how so many religions in the world don’t get along.  He tells us about the hate of the Crusaders, the eternal battle between Islam and Judaism, Southern Baptist and Mormons, and so on and so on… illustrating that fact that nothing in the history of this world, is full of more animosity and war then religion.

The teacher then sits on top of his large desk, in the front of the room and utters the following words “We expect you young people to be able to bring the harmony of logic to every situation in this life and you will start by bringing the most emotional subject in the history of this world into logic and order.  Because if you can do it there, you can do it anywhere”.  For the next year I learned a lesson that has paid many dividends in my life, that the study of theology is really the study of philosophy within the bounds (rules) of logic a specific religion has chosen to be governed by.  That even something as seemingly complex as religion, has a simple straight forward core.

If you want to flatter the most adherent believers in a religion, make them smile, have them look you in the eyes and say, “Yes that’s true!”… Tell them that their religion is so solid it is based on logic.  They will get all of the warm fuzzes they desire and their minds eye will flash with images of their religion being the one true religion that has found a way to bring together the world of science and logic with the Universe of God in Heaven.  Next, if you want to make most adherent believes in a religion, any religion mad, really mad, make a point of telling them that the logic their religion is based on is totally made up, subjective and full of so many holes of varying size that it makes a sieve look water tight.   

Different religions have different logic.  The fun part is that once you know a certain religions foundational theorem, “logic”, they become easy to understand, easy to argue with (the Greek meaning of the word argue, thank you very much).  You also learn that in every religion there is a fallacy in their logic, a belief that does not fit, a doctrine that it does not explain. That is every religion except for a true one.  If a religion is to be true, then the theorem by which their beliefs are derived from must be perfect. Their theorem must bear the weight of any test.  

So why am I bringing this up?

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