Monday, April 7, 2014

Relief society presidency letter after telling them Sunday.

Thank you so much for the opportunity to serve as Relief Society President.  Through this calling, and being in a safe season of my life in how I feel about myself, my marriage, and my children, this calling has helped me to follow and trust my heart and mind.  Thank you for being unique, individual, vulnerable, and for your integrity and honestly.  Thank you for tolerating my writing and thought ignorance. I would like to let each of you know that I love you, and that you three have many, many beautiful qualities I admire in each of you.  My only tears are for the pain my beliefs will cause others, but I'm at peace for the first time in my life.  Each of you has touched my heart and mind in a wonderful way as I expected when I requested each of you as my counselors and secretary.  Through this experience, I've learned that my body, heart, and mind are my own to love and cherish.  I've learned better what love and service really means.  I've learned that ultimately I am the best person to decide what my callings in life will be from this point forward.  I have great hope for my future.  I've learned that my extended family are going to say very unkind and kind things just as they have in the past week I've told each of them of my change in beliefs, and that I may say unkind and kind things also in response to becoming apostate to those I love so much. 

Unfortunately, due to the many many conflicts my new beliefs have with the many doctrines of the church I disagree with now, my future no longer involves associating myself as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  I plan to formally resign as a member of the church in the upcoming weeks.  This decision was made by my own will, at my own time, when I was ready, and without any influence by anyone who may perceive that I may have been offended.  I have no regrets except that I wish that this realization had come sooner.  I understand why it didn't.  My body and mind is much better in-tuned to the fact that I, and only I am in charge of my future.  I will always cherish the positive teachings of the church, and will continue to use the good and wise teachings and teach my children to never, ever doubt having doubts and to trust their hearts and minds always.  I'm feel absolutely and positively empowered by this.  I'm not afraid as I was before, but no longer fear anything associated with the church.

I embrace every emotion that comes with being human now, and understand that in living true to my inner teacher, and with integrity, that there will be beloved relationships lost.  This experience has been tremendously hard in coping with all the emotions that came with opening up my mind to my own journey, and with taking complete responsibility for my life and how I behave.  I'm just at the beginning of that process.  I made this decision as "worthy" by church standards as I've ever been, but stepped into being "unworthy" by church standards when I gave my mind permission to open up what I call the "doubt file box" and really look at it without bias. 

I no longer believe that doubt constitutes any type of poor character or integrity on any person.  I don't believe doubt is a sin.  I no longer believe in sin the same way Mormon doctrine teaches about sin.  This information, I suspect may come as a shock to you, or it may not.  It came as a shock to me as the entire house of cards dropped in my mind relatively quickly in March.  This calling did not wear me out.  Quite the opposite.  This calling showed me what is true, and what is not true for my life, and the life of my husband and children.  Love is real and charity is real in my experience. I'm forever thankful to the thousands of ancestors who fought for freedom in what I now understand better is truly freedom.  The problem for me is that the church comes with so many threats, manipulation, guilt, and oppression along with the love and service that there isn't room just to love and to love someone by your own will.  I believe the church uses our love for our children and our husbands to manipulate us.  I'm not sure if the leaders do it knowingly, and I'm not concerned if they are because that is their journey, and they are all wonderful men and women, I hope.  I believe my membership in the church gets in the way of my journey to love and live life, and to love my families just as they are today with no thought of tomorrow, and certainly with no threat of what comes after this life.  If you are offended by my new beliefs, I'm very sorry for any pain it causes.

With love and compassion,

1 comment:

Troy Hardy said...

I love how this comes across so positive.It is such difficult messy beautiful journey.