Saturday, October 9, 2010

Blog of the Month: Online Missionary Reaffirms Support for Boyd K. Packer

This week has been week filled with buzz as many of the liberal elements inside and outside the LDS Church have gone on the defensive over the conference talk Cleansing the Inner Vessel by Elder Boyd K. Packer.  I don't believe any talk has stirred up so much excitement since Ezra Taft Benson's To the Mother's in Zion. People have been lining up on both sides in support or criticism of Elder Packer.

I even entered the fray taking on Beale's Boyd K. Packer and the Tilt of the Wheel.  I commented that:

It never fails to amaze me that people think that the Church is going to change its position on Gays or even for that matter same-sex attraction if you talk about it enough. And that all this discussion is going to affect the official policies of the Church. Many believe it is like Blacks and the Priesthood and if you exert enough pressure it will change it. But it is much different issue since it goes to moral principle that has been adhered to by Jew and Mormon alike. Boyd K. Packer is speaking in an official capacity at conference. His words have been correlated at the highest level. The man is not just some apostle he is the President of the Twelve Apostles. The next in line to lead the Church. I am sympathetic to the exclusion of gay persons but it doesn’t matter what I think or you think. The LDS Church is not going to change its moral position officially or unofficially any time soon. In fact it stands behind the Proclamation to the Family, which I think will eventually be canonized. I think Boyd K. Packer is definitely a voice in the wilderness pointing out something which he considers a moral sin. Packer has been consistent throughout his ministry. When PBS asked him if he made a statement about Gays he said “I might have said something like that.” I personally like the guy because he is so consistent in his rhetoric. He makes conference interesting. Why should it even surprise you. In fact I wrote a post entitled Boyd K. Packer Is My Hero about how much I enjoy him. Things are black and white to him. To me Packer is like Samuel the Lamanites crying repentance and then having arrows shot by the so-called righteous Nephites except in this case Mormons who claim they sustain and support their leaders.
One of the official online blogging missionaries Sister Melanie Meaders has a kinder and gentler approach as she reaffirms Boyd K. Packer as a servant of the Lord in her most recent post.  Missionaries can't really get in to the controversy but they do write gospel themed posts:

Boyd K Packer is the President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Just as Jesus Christ called Twelve to testify of His teachings in His time, so has He called Twelve to testify today. The Apostles are the leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, under the direction of the President, Thomas S. Monson. They are each called of God and given His authority to guide and teach us.
 Her best post was entitled "A Solid Person" in which she talks about Per G. Malm's conference talk about becoming rotted from the inside out.  This post makes her blog worth reading:

My thought was from Elder Per G. Malm, who spoke Sunday afternoon.
Elder Malm described a tree he had seen in Sweden. From the street, it looked like any other tree. But when he got up close, he found that the tree was hollow, and had been filled over the years with trash. At some point, something had gotten into the tree, infected it, and hollowed it out. As time passed, bit by bit the tree filled with garbage. Eventually, someone put a firecracker in the tree and it was destroyed.
Elder Malm then warned that we must beware of those things with can destroy from the inside out. We must work to be solid people, standing tall and strong with the help of the Atonement of Jesus Christ.
  Sister Meaders is a fine young writer and I hope others will take the time to read her posts that she puts a great deal of effort and thought. I hope she receives several followers from this spotlight.


John Pack Lambert said...

Thankyou for your support of President Packer.

I have come across a quote of attack on President Packer that is so bad I just have to write an analysis. Here it is:

"What many Mormon people don't understand is that the minority of homosexuals in the Mormon religion love the gospel, and want to be a part of the Mormon religion. But then we have guys like Boyd K. Packer telling them that its immoral and they can change their homosexual behavior."

Except the claim that people do not understand the general idea the first sentance is totally workable, at least if we assume that this person is speaking of people with same gender attraction. The fact that President Packer has stated that homosexual should be used to describe behaviors and not people is another matter.

However then the person attacks President Packer for saying that homosexual behavior is immoral and a person does not have to give in.

An actual reading of President Packer's talk shows that he was specifically talking about pornography as a grave sin that cane be overcome. He did not mention other sins that violate the law of chastity specifically.

However on a deeper level President Packer said that though people had broken the law of chastity and sinned they can repent. In fact he said at some point we need to not look back.

This boils down to the fact that what people are angry about is that President Packer said that marriage is only between a man and a woman and that any other sexual relations outside of such a marriage is sinful.

The homosexual lobby objects to us saying that sexual relations between a man and a man or a woman and a woman are under every and all conditions acts of sin.

The attempts to claim this is because President Packer somehow disagreed with science are just a bunch of hogwash. Science can not prove or disprove that something is a sin, and it is calling sex between those of the same gender sinful that is the route cause of the anger at President Packer.

John Pack Lambert said...

Interestingly enough "Cleansing the inner vessel" was also the name of one of President Benson's first talks as president of the Church. It talked of cleansing from multiple sins, and did not get the stir that President Packer's talk got.

Of course, President Packer basically said that we have the agency to chose, the devil can not make us do anything. The HRC is telling people that no matter what they do they will fall into this grevious sin again. They may try to call it not a sin, but doing so involves fighting the light of Christ.

The cause of teen suicides by those who suffer from same-gender attraction is much more due to the HRC's defeatism than due to the messages of hope and change presented by President Packer.