Post excommunication; 2 Mormon feminists keeping on

Ordain Women executive board member, Nancy Ross, outside her office, Dixie State University, St. George Utah, July 14, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Nancy Ross sat adjacent to Ordain Women leader Kate Kelly, as Kelly opened an email that stated she’d been excommunicated from her lifelong church for apostasy. Ross, a mother of two, Dixie State art history professor, and devoted Mormon said experiencing this type of church discipline with Kelly was one of the most devastating experiences of her life.

“It was like walking through a nightmare where you really don’t believe it is happening. How do you console someone when they have just been shut out of heaven?” Ross said, “When their eternal family has just been torn apart?”

Ordain Women executive board member, Nancy Ross, in her office, Dixie State University, St. George Utah, July 14, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News
Ordain Women executive board member, Nancy Ross, in her office, Dixie State University, St. George Utah, July 14, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints officially states that church discipline is an inspired process designed to help members be purified from sin and return to the church, and receive its full blessings. Apostasy, according to the Mormon church, is repeatedly acting in clear, open, and deliberate public opposition to the church or its faithful leaders, or persisting, after receiving counsel, in teaching false doctrine.

Almost a month after Kelly’s excommunication, Ross, the spokesperson, social media committee chair and one of eight members on the Ordain Women executive board, holds back tears and trembles in her Dixie State office as she describes her complex and confusing feelings since her organization has moved into the public eye.

Before Kelly was excommunicated, Ordain Women had attracted primarily local media-only attention, principally regarding their efforts to get into men-only priesthood meetings. But, it wasn’t until Kelly’s excommunication that they truly moved into the media limelight. Now reports have proliferated coming from many prominent national and global publications like the New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Today and Al Jazeera.

The sudden pressure put on Ross since then has been intense.

The excommunication effect

In Ross’s personal life, she has received kindness from members inside and outside of her local ward, she said. She’s received messages from people who don’t necessarily agree with the Ordain Women movement but still express love and compassion.

However, at the same time, her ward members have complained to her local ecclesiastical leader, her bishop, behind her back, she’s been harassed online, and sent hate mail.

Although she’s continually saddened by news that loads of her fellow women’s rights activists have given up hope on the institution, she can’t give up hope, she said, her faith won’t allow it.

“I’m not leaving, not willingly anyway.”

When ward members complained to her bishop, a council was set up with her and her husband to talk about her involvement with Ordain Women, she said. Her Bishop told her that he had received a number of emails from other members inside and outside of her local ward.

This was upsetting and saddening to her, Ross said.

“I realize that my ideas for doing the right thing might look different from other Mormon’s ideas …. But, it’s very hard to have people look at you and think that you’re a terrible person and you’re involved in some evil thing. I’m not just one of those people who doesn’t care about the opinions of others. I’ve grown thicker skin,” she said, “but I do care, and that’s really painful.”

Despite her discomfort, her bishop’s counsel went well, she said.

“My bishop is a good guy,” Ross said, “He was willing to listen and really hear what I had to say.”

Though she is unsure if there will be further action against her, she said, for the time being, there is no issue, and she is sincerely grateful for that.

Long time equality activist

Cedar City resident Nadine Hansen was also in Salt Lake City with Kelly and Ross the weekend of Kelly’s excommunication. Hansen is still in regular communication, almost on a daily basis, with members of Ordain Women – specifically members of the executive board.

Ordain Women member, Nadine Hansen, St. George Utah, July 9, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News
Ordain Women member, Nadine Hansen, St. George Utah, July 9, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News

After Kelly was excommunicated, Hansen, a mother, grandmother, wife, and lawyer, wrote the statement of support for Kelly, which in turn went to Kelly’s bishop. This statement – similar to a legal brief – was sent to appeal the bishop’s decision. Since then, Kelly has announced that she is submitting an appeal to the next level of authority, her stake president, to try and contest her excommunication.

Hansen is another lifelong churchgoer, who has defended social equality as a lawyer, and an activist since the equal rights movement in the 1970s.

Unless women are ordained into the priesthood, they will not have a voice in the current church system, Hansen said. Currently, only men can hold the priesthood and therefore only men have official governance in the church, she said.

A statement from the governing leaders of the church, the First Presidency, released on June 28, said that both men and women have equal access to the blessings of the priesthood, but only men are ordained to serve in priesthood offices.

Because only men can hold the priesthood, she believes that women don’t have an equal voice in church governance, Hansen said. Although women do have a voice, she said, it’s a permissive voice which men permit them to have.

“There’s nothing that gives (women) an internal right to be there without question.”

Although she appreciates the wonderful men who ask women what they need, Hansen said, until women are actually at the decision-making tables, women’s needs are going to be overlooked.

Ross wants women to be decision-makers as well. She believes that advocating for equality is the right Mormon thing to do and her advocacy is directed by her faith, she said.

Ross prays constantly for, and has received spiritual guidance regarding, involvement in Ordain Women, she said.

“I’ve had a lot of little spiritual experiences, and a lot of ongoing confirmations that let me know that this is what I should be doing. I’ve always tried to let God point the way and … I’ve really tried to follow through – so this is where I am today.”

But the doubt still blares, often inducing stress and sleepless nights for Ross.

“I’m always questioning myself if I’m doing the right thing – because doing the right thing is really important to me.”

Not a mutiny

Doing the right thing means being part of a movement that Ross believes is not taking people away from the church, but keeping fringe Mormons inside the church.

Ordain Women and other feminist groups, despite what many people think, provide a very large support community that helps people navigate difficulties, and stay in the church, she said.

Women’s rights activists are not fighting against the church, Ross said, it’s quite the opposite, they are asking to have a bigger role in it.

Both Ross and Hansen believe that there are signs in Mormon history of women holding much more authority, and in some instances there’s signs of women actually holding the priesthood. But, this authority has been discontinued, or just conveniently ignored.

Both Ross and Hansen highlighted two principle examples of this, among many others:

  1. Emma Smith and other women holding the priesthood during the Joseph Smith era
  2. The prophetesses, like Deborah and other women who had recognized spiritual authority in the Old Testament of the Bible

So the theology can already support gender equality, but the outward manifestations of the practice of the Mormon church have not always supported gender equality, Ross said.

“There are a lot of people who view Mormonism as essentially needing a gendered hierarchy – and that can’t change. But that’s not my belief, and I know that there are a lot of other people out there who share my belief.”

Moving forward post excommunication

Although Ordain Women’s most notorious leader and founder, Kate Kelly, is planning on moving to Africa this summer, the organization and movement will continue fighting for equality. Both Ross and Hansen plan on continuing their considerable roles within the movement despite sometimes feeling like outsiders.

“The internet is full of comments – just leave – we don’t want you anyway,” Ross said. “Well, if I didn’t have faith, then I would have left, and if I didn’t have belief, I’d be long gone, but I do. I believe that (the church) will do the right thing.”

There are many reasons besides faith that keep feminists inside the church, Hansen said. The church is their family, it’s their heritage, it’s their friends, and it’s there social structure.

“It really is a part of you, it’s a part of who you are, it’s what made you who you are,” Hansen said, “you don’t just walk away from that.”

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82 Comments

  • Heaven Help Me July 23, 2014 at 12:33 pm

    Saint Peter welcomed his new arrivals at Heaven’s Gate. He was showing them around, when at one area he said “Shhhhh! Please be quiet!” They did, but when he started talking again, they asked why they had to be quiet in that place. Saint Peter replied “That’s where the mormons are. We let them think they’re the only ones here.”

    • Heaven Help Me July 23, 2014 at 12:40 pm

      Mormons who have been excommunicated by human beings on earth in earth bound entities need to realize that those humans aren’t the ones who determine what happens with them in any after-life; that judgement rests with a higher entity, not by judgmental humans of a man-made religion where the leaders have shown themselves to be expert scam artists.

  • St. George Resident July 23, 2014 at 12:36 pm

    I’m not sure why these women don’t see that this isn’t a dialogue with the (so-called) church. As far as the church is concerned, its mind is made up. The ONLY 2 choices are: to remain complicit in misogyny, or to stand up for yourself and leave.

    Also, I challenge people who say that the church has made them who they are…much like the popular saying that your experiences make you who you are. It’s false. Your *interpretation* of experiences is what makes you who you are. It is self-defeating for these women to attribute their strengths to anyone or anything else but themselves and their own self-determination, but it is how indoctrination works.

    Leave the church. It is difficult at first and you will lose friends but it will be the best thing you have ever done. You will also come to understand that anyone who based their friendship on common membership in a religious organization, wasn’t a true friend anyway.

    I left the LDS in 1984 and it was one of the best decisions I have ever made. The further away you get from it, the clearer things look.

    • RussT July 23, 2014 at 3:26 pm

      Good to see all the anti Mormon comments on here. I’m really glad you all have “moved on”

      • David C. Nelson July 23, 2014 at 9:16 pm

        Is any comment that disagrees with the leadership of the LDS Church an “anti-Mormon” comment? If I disagree with what the state of Israel is doing in Gaza, does that make me anti-Semitic?

      • The Rest Of The Story July 23, 2014 at 9:48 pm

        “He has a right to criticize, who has a heart to help.”
        ― Abraham Lincoln

  • JOSH DALTON July 23, 2014 at 12:45 pm

    Here is an idea…think of an excommunication from the LDS as a blessing. Now you can be clear headed and accept Jesus into your heart. You can still be LDS. Your relationship with who or whatever it is you believe in should not be shot down by the same people preaching it. Just leave the state….you can go be LDS somewhere else and nobody will even care. You just can’t be in the priesthood. Its there rule. Now the question is how many homosexuals are in the priesthood? They would not admit it anyway if there were. MAN or Woman still could not be in the priesthood. We already know every religion is riddled with hypocrisy it just seems amplified here in Utah. its not about equality. If your religious beliefs are strong enough with in yourself then you can be whoever you want to be in the Church any church!

  • Dana July 23, 2014 at 1:00 pm

    “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints officially states that church discipline is an inspired process designed to help members be purified from sin and return to the church, and receive its full blessings. ”

    What a bunch of HOGWASH!
    “Her Bishop told her that he had received a number of emails from other members inside and outside of her local ward.”
    Tell him to prove it. Sounds like a witch hunt.
    Supposedly, you’re an educated woman. Why do you want to be a part of a church that doesn’t treat you as an equal and has no problems sending you to the back of the bus? And tossed your friend OFF the bus. Why would you want to belong to a church that reveres pedophiles? Why do you want to belong to a church that makes Fantasy Island look real? Seriously, Lamanites? What a crock.
    Find another church that will value you. But, if you’re waiting for the next big “revelation” it may take a while. The old men are still working on the revelation that accepts the LGBT community.

    • AJ July 23, 2014 at 2:39 pm

      How many of those bishops were caught in prostitution stings? Maybe they were just seeking out temple worthy prostitutes. And what woman would believe in a religion that tells them their eternal life will be servitude to men turned to gods with multiple wives and concubines on their personal planets? People really believe that’s their destiny once they depart this world?

      • Mick July 24, 2014 at 12:00 am

        Kind of chuckling here. What in the world are you referring to or talking about?

        • AJ July 24, 2014 at 11:09 am

          The fantasy heaven world of the mormons. Men become gods of their own planet and other stuff conceived by those who drank too much of the koolaid.

        • centerprise July 24, 2014 at 2:03 pm

          They are in their own little fantasy world; making up a “straw church” to go off on.

  • ME July 23, 2014 at 1:05 pm

    My question would be “what kind of ‘say’ do they want?” If God runs this church. If indeed there is a Prophet of God on the earth, then none of us get a “SAY” in what goes on. In day to day dealings within a ward Bishops hold counsel meetings with Relief society presidencies, and other presidencies of other organizations and women have a BIG say in what happens within a ward. I wonder if these women have ever sat in one of those meetings and really understands just exactly how much the Bishop and others ask of the female leaders of the ward to give back. If these women think they need to be a Bishop or Stake President or Prophet… they have an issue with seeking callings which is frowned on. There is no authority other than God’s.

  • Jen Lindley July 23, 2014 at 1:28 pm

    you go girls!!! 🙂

  • cammel July 23, 2014 at 2:29 pm

    Sending someone hate mail is not Christ like. Are the senders of this mail getting punished?

    • Mike July 23, 2014 at 7:57 pm

      Someone could construe your comments as “hateful”. So it might be wise to know what exactly is meant by that term before casting your own judgment.

  • Wazz July 23, 2014 at 3:07 pm

    Sorry girls. Only for the dudes. You`er not allowed to do magic here.

  • bob July 23, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    THE REAL QUESTION IS WHY WOULD YOU EVEN WANT TO BE PART OF A CHURCH THAT’S SO D…* BORING AND EXPENSIVE. GIVE ME A BREAK.
    *Ed. ellipses

  • tom July 23, 2014 at 3:41 pm

    I completely agree with Josh Dalton. The ward members sending hate mail and harassing her should be the ones worried about their eternal salvation.

    • rogerdpack July 23, 2014 at 4:37 pm

      It didn’t say her ward members were sending her hate mail, I presume those are people who found them from the ordain women website, FWIW.

  • Makoanyane July 23, 2014 at 3:52 pm

    One of the biggest challenges of this life is to give up what we want for what God wants for us. If we really do have a loving, omniscient Father in Heaven (and we do), then we can trust that He will give us experiences that will lead to eternal happiness. Many of these experiences are good and joyful. However, some of these experiences are painful and full of rebuke. This story is a perfect example: these ladies want to receive the priesthood, but God has issued a severe punishment to help them to change from something that cannot work. Our entire purpose for being on this earth is to become like God. How can anyone become like a perfect being when they believe in imperfect ideas?These ladies would never be able to become perfectly happy as God is until they purge themselves of false doctrine and incorrect ideas. Honestly, i do not know why women cannot hold the priesthood. If the world were ready to receive the answer, then God reveal the answer to the world through His chosen prophet, and the Holy Ghost would bear witness to each and every person, and all would know it to be true. Until that time, we must have faith in God that He will not allow His church to be led astray. Occasionally, the Church will make changes in its policies as God directs through His chosen prophet. These two ladies petitioned for a change in doctrine–doctrines do not change. It is not a sin to misunderstand doctrine because nobody is perfect. The sin comes when we try to teach and practice false doctrine–when we refuse to give up our desires even when they are wrong. These two ladies have traveled down an incorrect path, and God has issued a warning to them via excommunication. For them, the path back to Heaven includes repentance by giving up their desires for the priesthood and allowing God’s desires to become their own. God desires that they will give up any incorrect desires, repent of any sin, and do whatever He wants them to do. If they do these things, they will be prepared to receive all that God has.

    • Dana July 23, 2014 at 7:06 pm

      @ MAKOANYANE Your statement “These two ladies have traveled down an incorrect path, and God has issued a warning to them via excommunication.” is another example of brainwashing and swallowing the propaganda that religion crams down the throats of their members.
      These ladies are traveling down a true path where they are questioning a false doctrine. Excommunication is a BLESSING from God. It now frees them to do their own research. It liberates them from the bondage of religion. ..it frees them from rules that religion not only created, but needs in order to control the membership.

      • The Rest Of The Story July 23, 2014 at 9:52 pm

        I agree! That one drank all the kool-aid and swallowed the pitcher!

        • AJ July 24, 2014 at 11:10 am

          More like a keg of the koolaid

    • your underwear is too tight July 23, 2014 at 10:30 pm

      BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!! You actually believe the crap you type??

    • Jen Lindley July 24, 2014 at 12:40 pm

      So what is the difference between a church “policy” and “doctrine”. I only ask because it seems to me that every time church policy changes, so does it’s doctrine. In one example, the churches Doctrine and Covenants states that red wine is to be taken at sacrament yet water is served instead. Seems like the churches doctrine changed there.

  • Kev July 23, 2014 at 3:54 pm

    I just love these stories. I wish we could get daily updates.

  • Alexis July 23, 2014 at 3:56 pm

    To say that women don’t have a real say in the church is just ridiculous. There are women in leadership roles and they meet with the Prophet and Twelve Apostles frequently. I guarantee that those men take very seriously the counsel that those women give to them. What these women want is power and to aspire to the honors of men. It is no different than a man in the church being upset because he isn’t called to a high position in the church. I actually had a friend whose dad was excommunicated because he felt he should have been an apostle. He wasn’t excommunicated because he felt that way, he was excommunicated for taking it too far.

    I would love to see Kelly come back, and I hope she does, but if she really believes that the Mormon church was established and run by God himself, then she has to believe that the church is currently being run in the manner that he wants. If she thinks it should be done her way and that the church is wrong, then she cannot say that she believes it is the true church established by God that she claims it to be. She cannot have conflicting beliefs because God is always right. She either believes it is true or she doesn’t.

    • Why Not Ordain Women? July 23, 2014 at 10:25 pm

      Wow, he was excommunicated foir asking for a second opinion. What a crime. Not.

      • Alexis July 24, 2014 at 11:20 am

        Are you referring to my friends father? If you are then it wasn’t simple asking a second opinion. You need to stop drawing your own conclusions on what happens when there is no evidence to support your conclusion.

        • Why Not Ordain Women? July 25, 2014 at 11:55 pm

          First, I didn’t draw any conclusions.

          Second, What else did he do, make the fact that he wasn’t ordained an Apostle public? If that is in fact true, and experience tells me it is, then we must ask ourselves, Should this man have been excommunicated from a church he obviously loved because his authority figures didn’t like the fact that complained about it to someone other then his Bishop?

          Third, If I am wrong and he didn’t publicly disagree with the decision then what did he do? What is the church’s definition of “taking it to far”? What is yours?

  • Tracy Hall Jr July 23, 2014 at 4:06 pm

    Nadine Hansen is the “faithful” Mormon who brought untold persecution on her fellow Saints by outing their contributions in support of California’s Proposition 8. She encouraged her friends to comb ward lists to match up the names of contributors with members of the Church. With friends like Nadine Hansen, who needs enemies?
    http://en.fairmormon.org/Mormonism_and_politics/California_Proposition_8

    • Dana July 23, 2014 at 7:14 pm

      So Nadine outed the haters, and now the haters feel persecuted?
      Imagine that. Karma is truly a beotch.
      With friends like Nadine, maybe the haters will think twice before spreading their $$$ to fund a hate machine.

  • Terrie Bittner July 23, 2014 at 4:50 pm

    One concern I have is that the members of Ordain Women presume her excommunication was due to Ordain Women. It has been shown that she lied when she said she never met with her bishop and stake president–that they even refused to meet with them, according to her. In the letter she was given, she was reminded that she had blogged about it, which she denied. Unfortunately, she did blog about it and as of the last time I looked, the post was still on the website where she first posted it and which many have seen and shared. Lying about your leaders is a serious offense, and it is very likely that was the reason for her excommunication–and will certainly factor in her appeal, as well as her behavior afterwards. I realize she is grieving, but life comes with moral responsibilities, even in your hardest moments. I do not think people should send her hate letters, but I do find it appropriate for people to make sure word is out that she lied and apparently counted on her followers not verifying what she said. That is only fair to the people she lied about. They deserve to have their reputations restored.

    We have to remember that a group is often judged by its leaders. While it is never wrong to wish for priesthood, her comments have made it clear she is not wishing, praying, or asking for revelation. She has stated she will not rejoin the church until women get the priesthood, something very few women even want or feel any need for. This is not asking–it is expecting God to change his mind at her command. She has said nothing less will suffice–apparently even if revelation says otherwise.

    Just a note about early Church women getting the priesthood. They did not. If you read the published record by Eliza Snow, you’ll find that she says she and Bathsheba Smith were ordained, but they both understood from the start that this did not give them the priesthood. It was used more in the form of being set apart. Given Kelly’s history, it is essential her followers do their own research and verify what they are being told.

    • Why Not Ordain Women? July 23, 2014 at 10:07 pm

      Someone needs to stop listening to her bishop and the other sisterwives in the Gossip, I-I mean, Relief Society. She was kicked out for Apostasy not for lying on some blog. Im sure im going to get some hate comments for this but so what? In case you haven’t noticed we no longer live in the 1800’s. We no longer live in the 1800s. Women today want to be treated equally. We are no longer satisfied with only being able to share our opinion and hope the men listen to it. We want more then hope. We are no longer satisfied with what men give us, we want to earn it ourselves. The woman in question was kicked out because she dared question “church” authority not because of some dumb blog post.

      Oh and I would like it if someone from your “Church” could give me an answer as to why the “church” won’t give a woman the priesthood?

      • MickeyD July 24, 2014 at 8:14 am

        Here you go, from the Church, “All human beings—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny. Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose.” It is clear that there are reasons we are of different genders. Each of us, as children of a Father in Heaven, are here for specific purposes. Those purposes unite us in the eternities. They are not counter to being treated equally. We are judged in this life for how we live it and what we do in the roles we fulfill. Not in whether or not one holds the Priesthood. Further, the Church states, “In God’s plan for the happiness and eternal progression of His children, the blessings of His priesthood are equally available to men and women. Only men are ordained to serve in priesthood offices. All service in the Church has equal merit in the eyes of God. We express profound gratitude for the millions of Latter-day Saint women and men who willingly and effectively serve God and His children. Because of their faith and service, they have discovered that the Church is a place of spiritual nourishment and growth.” This response will not be sufficient for you I’m sure. But for 95%+ of the membership of the Church, it is clearly correct and believed to be a divine principle.

        • Jen Lindley July 24, 2014 at 12:13 pm

          Good answer and I very much enjoyed reading it. However I’m afraid it doesn’t answer the question posed, if “…the blessings of His priesthood are equally available to men and women” and “All service in the church has equal merit in the eyes of God” then why is it that “Only men are ordained to serve in priesthood offices”? I don’t know about you but that doesn’t seem very equal to me.

        • Jen Lindley July 24, 2014 at 12:29 pm

          Also, after rereading my original question, it occurs to me that I should have posed a clearer question. I know that women are entitled to the blessings of the priesthood from the many conversations I’ve had with church and ward leadership in the past. what I fail to understand is, Why can’t a woman hold a priesthood office? Again I should have been more clear and I apologize for that. 🙂

  • jan July 23, 2014 at 4:56 pm

    Tired of hearing about this. How is this news worthy? Let people worship how, when and where they wish. This article seems to have done nothing more than open a dialog allowing the bashing of a religion. Isn’t there something else to report about? BLAH!

  • tight magic undies July 23, 2014 at 5:37 pm

    Happy pioneer day! That is if you are not black, gay, democrat, female, or a free thinker. So happy pioneer day all you narrow minded white only males!

    • The Rest Of The Story July 23, 2014 at 9:53 pm

      Love your comment! Right on!!

    • THAT GUY July 24, 2014 at 1:22 am

      Just wondering what “Tight majic undies” look like.

    • MickeyD July 24, 2014 at 7:20 am

      Any opportunity to bash the LDS Church. Your narrow-minded, single-focused, myopic comment says much about the life you must lead. Live your life and let others live and believe as they choose. The women featured in this article have every right to do the same. As does the Church in establishing its own policies. Like it, then stay; don’t like it, then go create your own. Funny how any article about he LDS Church brings out the venom of dissatisfied individuals with personal bones to pick. Unhappy? Then move on my friends, your lies, half-truths, and slander are not needed.

      • happytobehere July 24, 2014 at 8:13 am

        And you lies, half-truths and slander are? You are the same as the guy who’s comments you have commented on. Why does it hurt you so much that others have opiniions? Is he hitting home with something?

        • centerprise July 24, 2014 at 2:11 pm

          It isn’t the “opinions” we object to, but the venom with which they are stated. What was the first line of your own previous post? “lies, half-truths and slander”?

          • The Rest Of The Story July 25, 2014 at 1:23 am

            Venom? Right.
            I’d suggest you take a look at the LDS church’s most current revision of the “First Vision”. In any case, all other religions are called “Abominations”.
            Let’s talk about venom, shall we? Those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.

  • Mark July 23, 2014 at 5:49 pm

    Juggy:-)

  • Susan July 23, 2014 at 6:13 pm

    Moved to St G a few years ago. When the neighbors came over to meet us they asked if we were LDS. When I replied yes, their response was a very loud “oh good, (sigh of relief) that means that everyone on the street is!” If I would have said no, I guess I would have ruined the neighborhood. Self righteous …. Send your kids off on missions to convert non-members. But just make sure none of them want to live on your street.
    Ed. ellipsis.

    • Anonymous July 24, 2014 at 10:06 am

      I moved here a three years ago, and my neighbors asked me if I were LDS. I replied no, and not interested. Their response was “oh good we need more diversity here. Come over and have a beer sometime. ”

      The hate responses you see here are due to the general feeling of anyone who is an outsider here (not LDS). I’ve felt ignored shunned and generally disliked by 90% of all the LDS people I meet here.

    • AJ July 24, 2014 at 11:12 am

      A few of them told me to my face I wasn’t welcome in their little circles. Instead of LDS, I thought they were SOBs.

  • tom July 23, 2014 at 6:14 pm

    The article said she was getting hate mail.

  • tom July 23, 2014 at 6:16 pm

    Thinking for yourself and asking questions will get you excommunicated. There are plently of people that can attest to that.

  • Mitchell July 23, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    You all sound like a bunch of butt hurt winners! Bashing some one else’s belief, god will judge you just the same as those bashing Kelly and Ross. Good luck!

    • happytobehere July 24, 2014 at 8:17 am

      RIGHT BACK AT YA…..ITS HILARIOUS YOU DONT SEE THAT YOU JUST DID THE SAME. hahhahahaahhahahaahha. AND EVEN FUNNIER THAT YOU FAIL TO SEE IT…….

  • John July 23, 2014 at 7:30 pm

    The definition of Feminism is the belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities. What is wrong with that ideology, women being equal to men? Why do religions teach that women are inferior to and servants of men? Which men of which religions are claiming that God told them that? Are you saying God doesn’t speak to women, other than telling them to serve men, of course, according to men?

    • Why Not Ordain Women? July 23, 2014 at 10:11 pm

      I asked that very same question in my reply to TERRIE BITTNER above. I look forward to the responses. I hope you do too 🙂

  • Brian July 23, 2014 at 8:20 pm

    My question is, who would WANT to belong to a Church that could be influenced by petitions, protests, and social media??? Not me! I’m glad I belong to a Church that is led by a Prophet, under the direction of Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father. If she believes social media and protests are the way to influence God, then she has no clue about the nature of God and her relationship to Him. So many churches right now are “blown to and fro with every wind of doctrine” and have no foundation and are changing major doctrines under social pressure. I want no part of that, and I’m very happy right where I am. Others can worship how they please. This is America, after all (at least for now).

    • Show Me The Money July 23, 2014 at 9:58 pm

      The mormon church is heavily influenced by money and social perception of its image. That is shown with the mormon church suddenly having a revelation to ordain blacks into the priesthood. Of course, this revelation came after threat of the Federal Government and the IRS to remove the church’s tax exempt status. At the same time, colleges with NCAA sports threatened boycotts and discontinuance of contracts to play sports with BYU because of the discriminatory behaviors of the mormon religion. That can be found with athletes from other teams boycotting games with BYU despite disciplinary action by their schools. BYU & mormons buckled under that social and political pressure. Early in the 60’s, during the civil rights movement, church apostles were writing politicians, asking them not to support the civil rights movement (equality for blacks). And again, the church resigned to accept it despite what is written in its BOM and a former prophet (profit) stated. So don’t give me any of your comments about belonging to a church that cannot be influenced.

      • Kurt Harper July 24, 2014 at 5:59 pm

        Love your comment!
        Mormons claim it was revelation that let the blacks in. It was the ACLU and the civil rights movement that let them in.
        Mormons also claim it was revelation that started polygamy. It was Joseph Smith’s big ego from the attention he was receiving and he also wanted to get inside those girls prairie dresses.
        It wasn’t revelation that ended polygamy either. It was the federal government sending troops to Utah. Yeah could have been a state much earlier if the Mormons ended polygamy earlier.
        It was social pressure – not revelation.

    • Why Not Ordain Women? July 23, 2014 at 10:17 pm

      So i assume you plan on leaving the church when it changes its mind about Gay people as soon as its tax exempt status is threatened just as it did about black people way back in 1978 right after Jimmy Carter threatened to pull the same status?

    • happytobehere July 24, 2014 at 8:19 am

      Right…cuz what about the “black” thing? Did God just decide “blacks” are okay with him. Didnt have anything to do with the times they were living in…i.e. civil right movement? DUH

  • Not a feminist July 23, 2014 at 9:06 pm

    Could any other animal try to be equal to the opposite sex?? NO…why is it gonna work for humans?

  • utah bb July 23, 2014 at 9:14 pm

    Ok – So you believe the church is true but you don’t like the way it is run. So, you decide to ask for something you have been told not to. You know, why can’t I have the keys to the resurrection right now. I think I will start a movement for that. Do you realize the stupid cause you have taken. What good has come of it. Are you more in favor with God or have you riled up his enemies? We are put here to learn obedience and to love others. We might think some of the things we have to do are a bit crazy but that is the way God teaches us. It’s the last days and you are fulfilling prophecy. Wake up!

  • kristi July 23, 2014 at 9:16 pm

    How many other religions have this issue? If someone doesn’t like what their religion has to offer, they leave it. They don’t protest the religion, they go find another one they agree with or make up their own. Instead of complaining and being a victim of circumstances she should go make her own church. That’s our right as citizens of America. Freedom of religion and speech.

    • happytobehere July 24, 2014 at 8:20 am

      Kristi, sorry to call you out, but you told me yourself that your husband makes all the rules for you and your family and you hate it cuz you have no voice.

  • randy July 23, 2014 at 9:24 pm

    Mrs Ross I have been in the lds church since I was 7 yrs old because I was in a family that joined. I came to believe that the church was true because I was raised in it without knowing anything about other religions, I am 61 yrs old now and have been studying the church history in debth, and I am very supprised to find that there are alot of things about the church that have shocked me about the way they direct the church menbers.
    If you go to Morman Think, you will find alot of church DOCTRIN writen by church leaders and history of Joseph Smith that will really shock you into looking more into the relevancy of the church.
    If you have questions please feel free to e-mail me at this address Randy

  • Unable to understand July 23, 2014 at 10:07 pm

    To all of you who don’t understand about the Church of Jesus Christ don’t feel a lone. There have been none believing people on the earth in the beginning. People like you in history, Cain killed Abel. People of Noah’s time drowned, and the folks like you in Christ’s life yelled crucify him. A reference to all none believers and all the above mentioned 1 lines sums it up. For give them Father for they know not what they do.

  • Real Life July 23, 2014 at 10:38 pm

    I said it before, and I will say it again. The parrallels to Hitler and the Nazi party, are amazingly similar to a Quorum of something or other, and the church of something or other. Keeping women quiet, shunning outsiders, and believing that you are the chosen ones will eventually lead you down a path that leads to bad news. Another way to put it is, close minded people suck.

    • Alexis July 24, 2014 at 11:29 am

      REAL LIFE. You are obviously ignorant. The Mormon church does not keep women quite, shun outsiders, or even believe they are the “chosen ones.” If you would take a few minutes to investigate the reason why these women are excommunicated you would understand what really happened. To compare them to Hitler and the Nazi party is so absurd that it borders on insane. The opinion that you just expressed was the type of attitude that the Nazi party expressed towards the Jews.

    • Seig Heil July 25, 2014 at 11:06 am

      Why she would want to be a member of the mormon church after such treatment is like a Jew wanting to be a member of the Nazi Party and 3rd Reich in WWII

  • elliemae100 July 24, 2014 at 12:55 am

    I find it interesting that people – those referred to in a letter as imperfect humans – presume to know what God knows and wants. They all get together and worship what they believe he would want them to, give money to the men who run the house of worship and live by man-made rules… and have no problem judging other people for their views and beliefs. Instead of urging people to purge themselves of their false doctrines and false ideas, why not accept that its man’s decision to excommunicate people because they refuse to accept their “place” in the church? If there is a God, I doubt he would want people excluded simply because they believe they deserve equal standing in a man-made organization such as the mormon church.

  • SING4MONEY July 24, 2014 at 8:24 am

    I think so too.

  • tc rider July 24, 2014 at 8:26 am

    under my interpretations, the church is the body of christ , when the church starts excommunicating people because of church leader interpretations of what is right or wrong, is only going to hurt the body in the long run. especially when these so called judgments are based on one persons belief (possibly a self prescribed prophet) that are way outdated.

  • Bo July 24, 2014 at 8:47 am

    Over 50 comments and nothing substantial or worthwhile has been said yet. Mine included.

  • bob July 24, 2014 at 1:33 pm

    NO KIDDING RIGHT? CAN’T IMAGINE WASTING MY TIME READING KSL COMMENTS OR SIMILAR BECAUSE THEY GET HUNDREDS UPON HUNDREDS, AND I THINK THE FACEBOOK PAGE FOR STG NEWS GETS A BUNCH MORE COMMENTS THAN HERE. AND AFTER YOU’VE READ A BUNCH OF COMMENTS YOU WONDER WHY DID I WASTE MY TIME READING PEOPLE’S CRAP. YOU KNOW THAT OLD SAYING: OPINIONS ARE LIKE ***HOLES. EVERYONE HAS ONE, AND MOST OF ‘EM STINK… AHAHAHAHHAHA

  • Incognegro (Josh Dalton) July 24, 2014 at 3:54 pm

    Rome (CNN) — Mariam Yehya Ibrahim, the Sudanese Christian woman sentenced to death in Sudan because of her faith, arrived in Rome on Thursday, the Italian Foreign Ministry said.
    Ibrahim “will remain in Italy for a short time and then will travel on to the United States,” the ministry said.
    Sudanese authorities had said Ibrahim was guilty of rejecting Islam in favor of Christianity, but her conviction for “apostasy” and adultery was overturned last month on appeal, following weeks of international controversy.
    After her release, she and her husband, American Daniel Wani, were detained for two days, accused of falsifying travel documents after going to the airport in Sudan’s capital, Khartoum. They were trying to fly to the United States with their baby daughter, who was born while Ibrahim was in prison, and toddler son.
    Now their dream of starting a new life in the United States appears to be on the verge of becoming reality.
    Not only that, but Ibrahim and her family met with Pope Francis at his private residence in Domus Santa Marta in Vatican City.
    During the meeting Thursday, which lasted about half an hour, Ibrahim thanked the Pope for his and the Roman Catholic Church’s support and prayers, the Vatican said.
    He, in turn, thanked Ibrahim and her family for their “courageous witness and constancy of faith.”
    Francis also played with the children, 18-month-old Martin and 2-month-old Maya, and greeted the Italian diplomats involved in her journey to Italy.
    With this gesture, the Vatican said, the Pope “desired to show his closeness, attention and prayer also to all those who suffer for their faith, in particular to Christians who are enduring persecution or limitations imposed upon their religious freedom.”
    Ibrahim has said that her mother, an Ethiopian Orthodox Christian, raised her as a Christian.
    She remained steadfast in her faith despite the threat of a death sentence, saying at her sentencing hearing in May: “I am a Christian, and I will remain a Christian.”

  • Kurt Harper July 24, 2014 at 5:48 pm

    Being excommunicated is a blessing if you don’t believe in LDS doctrine.
    I was born and raised in the LDS religion. I have many friends and family that are LDS.
    Some of them frown upon my excommunication. Some family members unfriended me from Facebook because I’m no longer LDS.
    That is their issues. Not mine.
    I currently attend non denominational churches and have felt Jesus their.
    The music is so much more beautiful and enjoyable than this Mormon hymns.
    I am happier out of the LDS religion.
    Excommunication was a blessing.

  • TARRELL July 25, 2014 at 9:57 am

    Now the truth is coming to light.
    There is a lawyer in the background. Her name is Hansen.
    This is going to get bigger. The laws will be twisted to her legal opinion and then a federal judge will side with a articulate argument.
    All happened before no originality.

  • Anon July 25, 2014 at 1:35 pm

    This is all well and good, but we still don’t know how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.

  • Peeej July 28, 2014 at 11:46 am

    Good article, Drew.

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