Every Member a Missionary

Posted by: Andee / Category: , ,


I have touched on this in the past, but I thought a complete article on this topic was overdue due to the trouble I am having with some of my neighbors and church leaders. My bishop, a man I have never met, stopped by many times last month. 3 times to be exact. Did he call beforehand to see if it was a good time? No. Did he leave a message telling me what his visits were in reference to? No. It's frustrating to say the least, and it makes me feel like he doesn't value my time very much.

To most Mormons, non-Mormons are just potential converts. It sounds bad, but it's true.

I know he is only doing what he has been taught to do. Every Member a Missionary is a phrase I was taught over and over again. You should talk to your school chums, co-workers, neighbors, and people you do business with about the church because you could lead them to the Mormon gospel and make their lives "better."

I always had a hard time doing it. Most of the friends I had were not Mormon. They thought their church was just fine and who I was I to question that? If it works for them, I should be happy for them... and I was. I wish I could say the same for the people who now won't leave me alone. I mean really... take no for an answer.

Over the years of my inactivity in the Mormon Church, I have learned there are many different ways church members have tried to get my attention...

First, was what someone calls a "Hit and Run." It's an email or phone message with a quick note of how much the gospel means to you.

It's a little card left on your doorstep with a photo of Jesus or Joseph Smith (I always had more photos of Joseph Smith than Jesus... why is that?) with a couple Book of Mormon passages. It's notes left in your locker at high school telling you how much they missed you at Young Women's on Wednesday night.

Hit and runs don't give you time or opportunity to respond. They often left me angry because the same people leaving those messages for me wouldn't like it if I did the same thing to them... would they? Can you imagine the horror a true-believing Mormon would feel if I left them PostMormon.org notes on their doorstep? I wouldn't do it because it's not right... I just wish my Mormon pals would realize that.

Secondly, we have the sharing of a testimony. I usually got these from my Grandfather who promised over and over again that the church was true and that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. Lets face it, when this happens to a non-believer, it's a no-win situation. If you nod and say thank you, you are ungrateful. If you counter with what you believe followed up with facts, you are an apostate and an anti-Mormon. If you ignore it, you didn't feel the spirit and you never did.

Could you imagine me walking up to a group of LDS people in their church parking lot and sharing my "testimony" that the church wasn't true? They would call the cops. I guarantee it.

Lastly, we have love bombing. This has happened to me countless times. Usually every time I moved to a new ward I would be contacted by either the Young Women or Relief Society president. They would want to know ALL about me. Where did I grow up? What do I do in my free time? Do I have a boyfriend?

Once, in high school, I was loved bombed to the point that it drove me to hate a girl. She left notes in my locker about Joseph Smith, she stopped by my house every Wednesday night before Young Women's to offer me a ride... she even stopped by again on the way home to bring me copies of everything they learned in the lesson.

I know she meant well, she wanted me to be active again... but it drove me to near insanity. Why can't people just take a hint? Stop bothering people so much... it honestly pushes them away faster if you won't leave them alone. Give 'em some time to freakin' think! In Mormonism, thinking is the enemy...

Once I read a thread online by a woman whose husband was going to Iraq. The local Bishop and Relief Society President stopped by the night before he shipped out... without calling first. He and his wife were both inactive and wanted to spend the night together. After all, it could have been their last night together considering he was going off to war. Why didn't these people call ahead of time? Because they knew they would be turned down. I think the timing is awful too, they were both probably afraid of what might happen when he left the country, and the bishop saw that as an opportunity to get them to return to church.

From now on, when church members stop by without calling ahead of time, I am going to speak my mind. I have a full time job, I have hobbies, I have friends and family. If you want to talk to me bad enough, and get to know me, it might be helpful to call ahead.

Just a thought.

I guess it's just frustration getting the best of me here. All Mormons are taught that they are the only true church and that they have a responsibility to save others. Other religions are guilty of this as well. What they don't understand is that they could be wrong. They don't even take it into consideration. They think they have all the answers and they are superior in some way.

I think it's arrogant to approach someone over and over again if they have asked you to leave them alone about religious issues. People can only be polite for so long. I am getting fed up.

It's also a little fake in the way it's handled, too. My bishop is probably trying to reach me due to the meeting I had with my Mom's ex-bishop. He wants to know what questions I have about the church, and if he can help me with my testimony. He will show up and pretend to be a really good friend, someone I can trust. I promise you one thing, if I say or mention anything about this blog, he will turn on me in a heartbeat. I guess I am only a good person if I keep my mouth shut.


2 comments:

  1. bindy Says:

    Wow! How frustrating that must be for you. I couldn't put up with what you do. I would threaten legal action myself, but I don't have the emotional ties, and friends/family connections you have to the church. I wish you luck on this one.
    It would be nice if people just let people be who they needed to be, and offered respect instead of invasive messages and unannounced meetings.

  1. Sydney Says:

    Thanks for the comments as always, Bindy!! Love your blog by the way!

    It's very frustrating, and I find it disrespectful. However, if I am mean and nasty to them, I am seen as the one being disrespectful. They think they are doing the right thing, and I get that. They are convinced I need saving, and I am perfectly happy the way I am.

    If only people could look at things from another's point of view!!!