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definitelymaybe
Post  Post subject: I would like to resign but the bishop is my brother-in-law  |  Posted: Sun Aug 30, 2015 3:19 am
Nursery

Joined: Sun Aug 30, 2015 12:48 am
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Hi. I would just like to ask for some advice. I hope you could spare some time to read this lengthy narrative. :)

My older sister and I were brought up in the church by our single mother. Unfortunately she became terminally ill and passed away in 2003. The church and its leaders were very supportive of us. We had always been active in the church, and my sister and I remained so even after my mother's passing.

A few years after though, my sister sort of 'drifted away' and I was left to go to church alone. Then in 2006 or 2007, I believe she started hanging out again with her group of friends from church (including an ex-boyfriend). Eventually she started going back to church; but only this time, I was the one not going. In September 2007, she got married in the temple to that ex-boyfriend. I started going to church with them (since we shared the same apartment). For a few months, I was active again. I have had callings in the past and this time around, I was called as the ward employment specialist. I magnified my calling as best I could. But then out of nowhere, I just felt like dropping everything. I started making excuses not to go to church (I was sick, I had work, somewhere to go to, etc). I thought I was just being lazy and I was going through a phase; but weeks, even months passed and I still did not feel like going back to church. Even my sister was running out of excuses whenever the members asked why I kept missing church. She and her husband (who eventually was called as the bishop) kept persuading me to go back to church. I just brushed them off by saying I will go back when I am ready, when the time is right (whatever that meant).

For years, I have managed to withstand efforts from my sister, her husband the bishop, and the visiting teachers (who almost always showed up unannounced) to 'reactivate me.' I kept thinking of the real reasons why I did not want to go back to church. Then I had come to the realization that what I was feeling was not just pure laziness, but the manifestation of doubt. Though examining my thoughts and feelings further, I found out that it was not even doubt but disbelief! It was a gradual realization, and thinking back that disbelief started even from my primary days! I then remembered that whenever I shared my testimony or prepared Sunday talks, I intently refrained from saying anything about the truthfulness of the BOM, the real living prophet blah blah, and that TSCC is 'the only true church upon the face of the earth'. I would get put off whenever we had devotionals about temple/celestial marriage (where one man gets plenty of wives) and the YW/YSAs would get giddy. I felt sick when female SAs, those 30 and above (in spite of their successful careers/financial independence), still got made fun of (especially by priesthood leaders) due to their inability to find a man to marry. There were a lot of things I was curious (and doubtful) about which did not sit well with me, so I spent a considerable amount of time researching and reading all the stuff I could find. These were thoughts and emotions I had refused to acknowledge for years, and they are all coming out only now. This realization caused me so much anguish, hurt, and anger; both mentally and emotionally. I felt like I had been cheated and lied to, that I had wasted my time and energy being devoted to a lie when I could have lived my life differently instead.

I could not keep it in any longer so I decided to 'come clean' to my sister in May 2014. She was the only real close family I have. I decided to process my thoughts and 'plan' the right approach on how to break it down to her. I even composed a lengthy message for her, stating the reasons why I felt and thought the way I did; but the gist of it was that I no longer believed the church is true. I think that was the only thing she read out of everything. She went on to say that she could not believe how I could say those words after all the church has done for us. Understandably she did not take it very well, but her words still surprised me. Immediately after that, she refused to talk to me or even look at me. She avoided me like the plague. I did not know how much she has told her husband (the bishop), but it felt like he was avoiding me, too. So basically for four months neither of them talked to me even though we were living in the same house. They still let my niece talk to me though.

During that four months, I felt really depressed and alone that I wanted to die. I wanted to leave and live on my own, but I just could not afford it then. It got so bad that there were even psychosomatic effects. My arm and leg muscles would get weak and it was hard for me to move around. At first I thought it was the start of a flu but I had no joint pain or fever. It was just overall muscle weakness for five straight days. Then a couple of days I would get better, then it would come back for another week. This happened for over a month. I felt like my sister was emotionally blackmailing me. I knew she would not give in (unless I took back everything I said and got back to church). I resigned myself to the fact that she might never even talk to me again. I thought so be it; I was never going back to the church ever again.

In late August 2014, my sister gave birth to a son (their 2nd). My brother in law (bishop) informed me. I sent my congratulations but that I did not think my sister would like to see me in the hospital. He told me otherwise so I decided to go (nervously). I even got her favorite cake (bribe??). So I got to the hospital and entered the room. My sister was up and when she saw me, she looked at me like nothing happened between us. I approached her, kissed her on the forehead and gave her the cake. She was appreciative and all. It was weird, in a good way though. I asked how she was, about the baby; and she was chatty, really like nothing ever happened. It was overall a pleasant visit.

Since then, things have been better between us. We are no longer living together, but I do visit them frequently. From time to time, she would try to 'joke' about me going to church with them, or my niece would ask why I do not go to church with them. I have been coming in contact with other church members more recently during my nephew's 1st birthday celebration. Previously I was 'tricked' to stay for dinner when I thought they just had an old friend coming over and it ended up like a ward family dinner. I am happy that my sister and I have a better relationship now; but it feels like even after everything that had happened, she is still hoping I would come back to church. I have been thinking and reading a lot about resigning from the church for a while now, and I feel doing this would make my decision final. I would like to ask for some advice though because as I have said, the ward bishop is my brother in law. What would be the best way to do this? If I send my resignation through email, would the bishop get automatically notified that a name in his ward is being removed? My relationship with my sister may still seem a bit fragile at this point and I do not want to mess things up, but I still want her to know that I am serious about my decision and I stick by my choice. Whether I do it now or later, I think her reaction will be the same. Would it make a difference if I just wait until my brother in law gets released as the bishop? If a member resigns, will all ward leaders be notified as well?

I am really hoping someone could spare their time and share their thoughts on this. Thanks very much.

P.S. By the way, I am from the Philippines. I have no idea if anyone from my country has even tried resigning from the church before. All I remember is members get categorized as either active or LESS active, not INACTIVE even if MIA already for years like myself. :)


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Melanie
Post  Post subject: Re: I would like to resign but the bishop is my brother-in-l  |  Posted: Sun Aug 30, 2015 5:13 am
myself

Joined: Sat Jun 22, 2013 4:34 pm
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Hello. It is very nice to meet you. Thank you for sharing your journey here. I can assure you that it all is going to be OK. It seems to me that you are going in the correct direction :)

I know Phillipino people who have resigned. Over 100,000 people a year across the world are resigning. It is very usual and the right thing to do, it does not need to be a big deal at all and one day you will realise this. There is a lot to look forward to.

The fact that your brother in law is bishop is irrelevant to the dynamic of resigning. The system is an administrative procedure and however you resign, the bishop of the ward is informed and even if a new bishop is in place, it is absolutely certain that your family along with other ward members will get to know. Sometimes the ward tries to keep it quiet when a member resigns because they don't like to admit that people do resign and they don't want to give that information out. It is far easier for them to pretend that someone has soley gone inactive. This means they don't have to ask themselves the same searching questions as you have and face the issues that other people have. Some people are just not committed to their integrity.

Resign by email.

You have good indications that your sister does care for you and values your support and you will be included in your niece and nephew's lives. Now this may be a bit of a rocky road but if you love those children, then far better you be around them as a strong person and be able to share your life and values and spirituality as it is. That is the greatest gift you can give them. And down the line that may help them to be able to leave the organisation too.

I am afraid that shunning does happen. But that is their loss. Remember this. There may well be times of emotional sadness ahead as you grow stronger as you move through the process of resigning and living as a non member. That is so not easy. But remember that it is they who are missing the opportunities and that is a real shame for them.
You are doing what is right and you are brave and strong. I am hopeful that your sister and her family will adjust. You are family.

And to reply to your sister's statement; there are good things about the organisation and it is OK to benefit from them and to value them, but the point is that it is built on false and corrupt foundations and practices strategies of dishonesty in its doctrines today, and when you are aware of that, then you know what you have to do.

Just feel free to post on here, people will support you every step of the way. And I look forward to hearing from you.

_________________
Why leave? http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... 989OOSOycw
How to heal? http://media.blubrry.com/mormonexpressi ... ion225.mp3


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Rainfeather
Post  Post subject: Re: I would like to resign but the bishop is my brother-in-l  |  Posted: Sun Aug 30, 2015 6:57 am
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I had to laugh at the line, "after all the Church has done for us." First of all, anyone can do amazing things for people. The LDS Church does not have a monopoly on helping people. Non-religious people can still volunteer in a soup kitchen.

"The Church has done so much for us, therefore it is true," just shows you how desperate they are to grab onto anything in order to strengthen their testimonies.

It's also ironic that she says the Church has done so much for you and then goes on to shun you. You could say, "Yeah, you're right. It's done so much for me that my own family has shunned me. Isn't it great?" Man.

Anyway, that's a pretty awkward position to be in. Yes, she may shun you again, but how she reacts is not your responsibility. You need to do what is right for you. It's up to her how she handles that.

I was wondering what would happen if you phoned the Church Records Office and told them that you want to resign, but you're not sure how to go about it because your brother-in-law is your Bishop and he may refuse to process your resignation.

Ask them how you should handle a resignation in such a case. Because after you send in your resignation, you will receive a letter from Church Headquarters, telling you that this is a local matter and to contact your Bishop.

Tell them that it would do no good for them to send you this standard letter, as you cannot go to your Bishop about this. See what they say if you tell them you'd like to by-pass that step.

Melanie, I haven't had any experience with the e-mail resignation. If they resign via e-mail, do they still get that standard, "This is a local matter ..." letter?

_________________
"A mind stretched by a new idea can never go back to its original dimensions." - Oliver Wendell Holmes


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Melanie
Post  Post subject: Re: I would like to resign but the bishop is my brother-in-l  |  Posted: Sun Aug 30, 2015 7:42 am
myself

Joined: Sat Jun 22, 2013 4:34 pm
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Hi Rainfeather. All I know for certain is England. I did not receive that standard letter and neither did my mother, who is in a different Stake. I sent the email resignations in for both of us.
I have read on Forums that in America, the standard letter has been received by folk after resigning by email.

With regards to the bishop refusing to process a resignation, he has no church authority to do that. This is exactly the situation I was in with my bishop. In my case, he was not a relative, but he was a bishop who did not wish to carry out what is an administrative responsibility that he has.

I went to the SP. The SP sorted the renegade bishop.

My point is one can see here again what is always so important in the area of resignation.......separate the deed, which is an administrative procedure, from the emotions. Exploit the chain of command and use it to get what you want, which is the final letter saying that your resignation has been processed. Then check it by trying to set up a LDS account or logging in with a current LDS account and your membership number.

No matter this lady's situation, which is obviously sensitive, as an autonomous adult, she should not expect of herself that she has to tread around anybody elses emotions in order to achieve such an important life goal as exiting a cult.

_________________
Why leave? http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... 989OOSOycw
How to heal? http://media.blubrry.com/mormonexpressi ... ion225.mp3


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Rainfeather
Post  Post subject: Re: I would like to resign but the bishop is my brother-in-l  |  Posted: Sun Aug 30, 2015 8:29 am
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My Bishop had never even met me, as I'd never attended that ward. He still tried to sit on the paperwork for months. I had to really be a nag, before he finally got to the point where he probably just wanted to be rid of me. LOL That's not my character at all, but I wanted it done.

I just don't want 'definitelymaybe' to have to fight with the brother-in-law in order to get it done. If resigning via e-mail means you can do it without having to contact the Bishop, then that sounds like the way to go.

_________________
"A mind stretched by a new idea can never go back to its original dimensions." - Oliver Wendell Holmes


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Melanie
Post  Post subject: Re: I would like to resign but the bishop is my brother-in-l  |  Posted: Sun Aug 30, 2015 8:41 am
myself

Joined: Sat Jun 22, 2013 4:34 pm
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The bishop has to tick a box on the data record that says he is confident that the person is resigning of his/ her own accord and is not being manipulated so to do. Now sometimes he will do that without meeting the person. But he has to somehow or other, tick that box. That is the standard procedure. Then the record gets sent back to Utah, probably via the SP too.

Perhaps the bishop being this lady's brother in law will work in her advantage. No-one likes matters to be taken over their head. He may very well do the right thing and process easily for love of his wife and his kids and his sister in law. I am sure that can happen. The world is full of decent LDS after all. It is just a situation they don't naturally choose, that is all. Important to keep it all straight forward and take any challenges that arrive as and if they do.

We have so many great testimonies on here from people who have resigned so very easily. The organisation is changing fast from how it used to be. They don't want to make it appear hard for someone to resign as that makes them look even more like a cult. We even have that kind SP Email address for help in any awkward situations.

Life is good.

_________________
Why leave? http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... 989OOSOycw
How to heal? http://media.blubrry.com/mormonexpressi ... ion225.mp3


Last edited by Melanie on Sun Aug 30, 2015 9:43 am, edited 1 time in total.


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joseph's myth
Post  Post subject: I would like to resign but the bishop is my brother-in-law  |  Posted: Sun Aug 30, 2015 9:42 am
God of Poly-Folly

Joined: Wed Mar 12, 2008 2:29 pm
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Hi definitelymaybe, welcome!

Everyday and any day is now like the Mormon church (small C) doesn't exist. Treat thinga accordingly and never think twice about your control over your life from maybe here on out. Definitely.

If it makes you feel better send an equal letter to Scientology, asking them in an e-mail to please delete you from any list that they may have. JW's the same, since they are all leftovers from the American Second Great (snoozing) Awakening.

Nice to have made your acquaintance.

easy e-mail link
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=50410

_________________
God of Poly-Folly Folly

{If you believe in things that you don't understand, then you suffer ~Stevie Wonder}
.................. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekkkD8HU944
........................ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekkkD8HU944
.................. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekkkD8HU944


God of Poly-Folly Folly


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Melanie
Post  Post subject: Re: I would like to resign but the bishop is my brother-in-l  |  Posted: Fri Sep 18, 2015 12:28 pm
myself

Joined: Sat Jun 22, 2013 4:34 pm
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Location: England

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Very Good News Here

http://exmormon.org/phorum/read.php?2,1673211
hurlyburly

My wife and I sent in our email resignation letter on Friday. I tried logging into lds.org today, and got an Access Denied page! I'm taking this as sign enough -- we're officially out!

I can't believe how excited this makes me! (Some strong drink may be in order.)

Time from my last time in church to full resignation: 2 months, 1 week, give or take.

_________________
Why leave? http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... 989OOSOycw
How to heal? http://media.blubrry.com/mormonexpressi ... ion225.mp3


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