Sunday, August 22, 2010

Traditions of the Fathers

As I was talking to a friend the other day, she was telling me the one thing that bothers her about the Mormon church is how they think she is evil for not being Mormon. I told her she wasn't alone in her feelings. There is an attitude of superiority even within the Mormon church. It is evident every Sunday and practiced openly for everyone to see.

In other Christian churches when the Sacrament is offered to the congregation, everyone is given the opportunity to partake at the same time, or the pastor is offered the Sacrament at the same time, or after everyone else. Not in the Mormon church. the male bishop and counselors are offered the Sacrament before everyone else. The entire congregation must wait until they are served before anyone else is allowed to partake. Even then, there is a hierarchy. If a visiting leader who is a superior, he is offered the sacrament before the bishop.  This is the opposite of what Jesus taught when he washed the feet of his disciples and taught his apostles to serve others and put themselves last, not first or above those they serve.

The leadership has been sharply criticized for years for this practice.  The only explanation they give is that it is tradition; yet in their own teaching they say that the traditions of the fathers are evil and should not be carried forward to the new generations. They do not practice what they preach.  Why should they? They have all the power and privilege and not any motivation to give it up.

I used to believe that I, and people like me could affect change from within. I finally decided that as long as the leaders are pulling in 8 billion a year in tithing, there is no motivation for them to make significant changes.  Leaving and pulling tithing money out may be the only motivation for them to change their pharisaic ways.

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