Episode 308: Pope Francis for Prophet

5 comments on “Episode 308: Pope Francis for Prophet”

  1. Orrin Dayne Reply

    One motivation to switch to sacrament first Sunday meeting blocks may be to have young kids start the block (rather than end the block) in the most restrictive meeting. If you end with sacrament, kids are the most restless in the meeting where they are supposed to be the most “reverent.” By putting sacrament first, you are likely to decrease the nuisance factor for people with young kids and also reduce the overall noise.

    I also wouldn’t be surprised if they have numbers that correlate increased attendance to the other meetings when sacrament meeting is first. Again, if I have young kids, once I’ve overcome the inertia to get to church, it’s actually nice to drop the kids off to Primary for two hours.

    • Shadrak Reply

      I’d guess the reason to normalize when to start sacrament is money. Ward budgets are based on sacrament meeting attendance, those with later start times likely have more attendees (especially 9 am starts). Those who start the block with sacrament may feel penalized for “doing the right thing” and want a fair methodology for budget allocation. This is simply another brick in the correlation wall.

  2. Saint Ralph Reply

    I’m glad for whatever openness and humility Francis has brought to the Papacy, but my two biggest disappointments are:

    1) Failure to blow the doors off the child abuse scandals the church has been involved in. It should be church policy, upon learning of sexual crimes or indiscretions, to excommunicate the perps on the spot and turn all of the church’s records concerning the incidents over to the civil authorities, and to be just as hard on those covering up child abuse as those actually committing the acts. The church is still fighting discovery in the courts of multiple countries to keep what they know secret. That’s unacceptable. Francis, and the Vatican in general, should have a zero-tolerance policy toward child abuse, as should any organization, religious, secular or otherwise. If they lose half of their priests, bishops and cardinals, so be it. Maybe they need to look into allowing the clergy to marry. They would probably attract a whole different type and caliber of people to those jobs if they did.

    2) Unbending stiffneckedness on birth control. I’m not saying he should endorse abortion; that will never happen and I’m not saying it should. But the use of condoms to reduce unwanted births and crippling/fatal diseases needs to promoted, not banned. The church, and humanity in general, could do more to relieve human suffering by teaching contraception and disease prevention–and providing the means to practice it–than practically anything else. GENTLY, voluntarily reducing the population of some of the worlds most overpopulated/underfed regions not only results in fewer mouths to feed , but healthier people more capable of caring for themselves and their families.

    Until Francis addresses these issues head on, he doesn’t deserve to go for pizza with his buddies.

    So there.

  3. John Spencer Reply

    I’m going to push back on organized religions and financial transparency. There are many religions that do fully disclose, at both the “mother church” level and at the local congregation level. I work as a pipe organist and thus have worked for many churches over the years. With the exception of two churches that I have interacted with, namely Mormonism and Catholicism, they _all_ had financial transparency.

    In my current congregation that I work for, and I attend, there is a tremendous open spirit regarding finances. My salary, as well as that of the secretary, the priest, the choir director, the book keeper, and all other employees is right there in black and white.

    We release an annual statement to the congregation annually that has both high level (this is how much we took in and this is how much we spent in various high level categories), and there is a lower level, which will break down finances to sub categories (like “Music” being high and “Organ Repair” being low). The individual transactions are not broadcast but are available to the congregation.

    This is always something I look up when I work at a church, even if I am merely playing a concert mostly because I was LDS for most of my life. It is foreign to me but very neat to see the transparency. You’d be surprised at how many will have the financial disclosure information sitting in entrance on a table, or even the high level disclosure, to the penny, posted on the bulletin board.

    Heck, for my church I attend now, I can get the local, the diocese, and the national church finances right now, they are open to the public. 🙂

    • Shadrak Reply

      Imagine how easy it would be for LDS Inc. to release financial statements. It’s already centralized. The right accounting program, a push of a button, report published.

      In addition, I disagree with Brandon’s assessment that Mormons don’t care where their money goes. We do and everyone would like to know where the money goes. But like many church things, this is one more area we’re able to suspend rational judgement and trust the brethern because they tell us to.

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