I wanted to write and thank you for your much needed comments of correction to our ward. When 10% of the ward shows up after the Bishop has stood up to begin his welcome to the congregation clearly there is a problem. Sunshine really is the best disinfectant. Those who think they can sneak in the back after the meeting starts need to know that we see them and their lack of appreciation for the sacrament ordinance. They need to know that those of us in the soft seats don’t appreciate their intrusion on our spirituality. It's bad enough we have to put up with parents who don't discipline their children, which has been a problem ever since the church got rid of the cry rooms.
I am also grateful that you addressed the movie Hunger Games. Truly we are in the end times when a movie such as this becomes one of the largest movie franchises in the history of movies. We are a peculiar people and shouldn’t allow ourselves to become integrated within the popular culture. Satan is really good at using his deceptive tactics to entice our youth.
God’s plan of agency shouldn’t take effect until after kids leave their parents home. At some point the youth will venture out into Babylon without the protection of their parents helping them be obedient by forbidding them to see such horrible movies. So, It was great that you brought the topic up with both youth and adults present. The youth need to know that they were wrong for seeing it, but the youth also need to see that the parents were wrong for allowing them to see it. Teaching the youth that church doesn’t approve of everything their parents do is great preparation for them to use their agency. A child’s relationship with their parent should only be as strong as their parent’s relationship with god and children shouldn’t be afraid to let their parents know when they are out of harmony with the inspired words of their stake leaders. This is the only true church on the face of the earth and when parent’s views and the churches views collide, even over something as simple as whether a movie is worthy of seeing, children should make clear to their parents which side they are on.
There is another book that many people in our congregation (both adults and youth) are reading that I would like to bring to your attention. It starts off with one of the main hero’s decapitating a defenseless man and stealing from him. About half the book is about two groups that keep slaughtering each other in mass numbers. One of the groups was cursed with dark skin because they were so bad that god wanted everyone, even people thousands of years later, to know that they were bad people. Another one of the heroes kills a bunch of people and then cuts off their arms as a trophy to show the king. One of the bad guys is struck dumb and is forced to beg for food before being trampled to death by the good guys. Even those on the good guys side are killed if it is determined they weren’t true to the cause of freedom.
The climax of the book is when a 3rd group of millions of people have a civil war and fight until everyone is dead but two leaders. One of the leaders is resting on his sword and the other leader cuts off his head. Then that leader collapses and dies. This isn’t the end though. One of the other groups is performing virgin sacrifice and torturing men to death and then forces their wives and children to eat their husbands and fathers. But this still isn’t the end. Then they rape those women and children, kill them, and eat them. Those are clearly the bad guys. The book ends with the not quite so bad guys winning by committing genocide on the really bad guys.
This is just a very brief overview. There are far to many examples of people being killed to list including more decapitations, burning people while they are alive, scalping people while they are alive, and accepting surrender and then killing them anyway, but this brief summary should be more than enough to create an informed opinion and to ban it within the congregation. The book has much more violence and depravity than Hunger Games.
Also when you talk to the congregation, be sure to qualify your statement that you hope you don’t offend anyone. This way, if anyone has enough unrepentant pride to disagree with you or go read the book anyway everyone will know it is their fault for being offended and not the fault of your inspired words.
I would like to take a moment to share why I am so grateful you have brought up these issues. As a lifelong member I have done my very best to follow the commandments. I dropped out of BYU and didn’t pursue a career, so I could marry a returned missionary, stay home, and raise a large family. This is what our living prophets counseled us to do. Recently the “I am a Mormon” advertising campaign has been advertising non-traditional Mormons. Besides the hippy guys with their long hair and beards, they are showing professional women who have delayed their family wearing business suits and pants! When the church started allowing women to say the opening prayer in Sacrament meeting I was a little worried. But this ad campaign marginalizes my identity of what it means to be a Mormon.
I am so grateful there are inspired leaders like yourself who see through this big tent Mormonism gobbledygook for what it is. We are letting our standards slip. The church has had to distance ourselves from a BYU professor who was merely restating what great prophets of our day have said, even Brigham Young and Bruce R. McConkie. BYU Idaho has even stooped to allow these tight fitting so called “skinny jeans.” I am sure none of this is new to you. I am glad there are still people in the church like you who get it. They try to pass all this off as tolerance, but this is the same attitude that allows people to think they can show up late for church and watch movies like Hunger Games and still be considered part of the core faithful.
Your’s in the gospel,