Oh my heck, to use a wonderful Mormon description.....I received today a couple of comments from a cowardly former member of our ward in which I was personally attacked and spoken of in a very unkind and disrespectful manner. I state it was cowardly because, well, they would not leave their name. They left it as anonymous.
It has been now a full and amazing year since we left the LDS church, and three years since I served as Bishop of the Stoney Creek ward, I was called all kinds of names in the post, such as egotistical, condescending, etc. etc. I am so sad that this former member of our ward, is still experiencing so much unhappiness and guilt regarding what I can only assume is their own unkind actions towards my family that they felt it necessary after such a long time to leave such a post. I have no problem with anyone adding critical comments but the arguments in the comment were not arguments at all, they were simply personal attacks with the precise opposite content of anything relating to "Christan kindness" which is what Mormonism claims to represent.
To think that they would be so miserable for them this far after the fact as to leave such a rant on my blog is quite humorous to me now. I had formerly put up with this type of behavior from members of the LDS church, I no longer feel it is of any value for me to sit back and have this occur without doing something about it. For 46 years, I allowed myself to be told what to feel, what to believe, what to do in my life. I have no intention of sitting back and supporting this type of cowardly and sad behavior anymore.
In truth it is likely a representation of their own miserable existence. I believe, that this individual feels unfulfilled in his circumstances and unable to make changes to enhance their own situation as we did, 12 months ago, when we discovered the untruth of the LDS organization. I have not been bishop for three years and they are still so angry with me? Wow...that's kind of......flattering!
"IF" and I mean if, they had any belief in their own words I would think they would have left their name. Funny thing was they referred to other members of the unit in a way that were unmistakable and yet they themselves were very careful to keep their own identity, secret.
This is not a surprise, as the gossip and speculation and the "conspiracy" that I referred to in our exit story showed the type of individuals that we were dealing with. It would appear, that since we have left, that not much has changed in this regard.
I have been very lucky to have many wonderful LDS friends since I have left, that made clear that these type of individuals do not represent the many good and faithful active members of the church. I think they are right. This likely was an isolated incident and does not reflect for the most part the many excellent quality members that still are part of the LDS organization.
Regardless, I have removed the comments, as it is my blog, and I have now changed the settings on the so that people who do comment must be registered in order to leave a comment and therefore make their identity clear.
It would seem only fair, that if your going to gossip in a public online forum that you have no right to have your opinions given any value unless you are willing to stand up and take accountability for them. Unlike in the LDS church, where gossip, speculation, unkind words and actions, were regularly a part of the social dynamic.
It feels today, so amazingly fulfilling and wonderful to no longer be part of that cruel and unkind group of individuals and in an organization in which, at times it would seem, they properly represent.
The good news, for me personally, is that even this type of cruel and unkind behavior is such a distant past to me now. I feel secure that this will not prevent me in any way from having a deep fulfilling sleep and enjoying the end to a wonderful weekend at home with my wife and family.
We are doing what brings us true joy and happiness. I would only humbly suggest, that those of my former acquaintances, try to be authentic in their decision making in doing what brings them more peace and happiness. Because this person did not truly reflect in their communication that their life was bringing them a level of joy or contentment.
Trust me, I have been where they are at now.........it was not easy to change that unhappiness, but they have not yet been where |I am at now, and I truly wish that they could be!
I am so thankful for the many and amazing supporters of our journey. You far outnumber and out serve the few former detractors that are still conducting the same behavior and sadly receiving the same reward as they always have.