Third Hour

Why Women Don’t Wear Pants to Church

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6 minutes ago, Vort said:

I'm not Grunt, and as you know, normally that would make me very shy and reticent to share my opinion. But...

I think you should always pray for confirmation of what the prophets teach. But when that confirmation doesn't come, or doesn't come in the form you might expect, then I believe it's still incumbent upon you to obey what the prophets teach. The confirmation is just that, a confirmation. The obligation to obey precedes that. Remember that Adam offered sacrifice for "many days" before he ever found out why.

I find this one of the greatest fallacies we teach.  I really do.  It's tantamount to surrendering our agency. And when it takes its natural extension (which I've heard multiple times) that if we follow the prophet and the prophet is wrong (or whatever priesthood leader), then the fault lies on the prophet, it's outright heretical. 

I will not surrender my agency like that, nor will I displace the accountability for my decisions. 

And to be clear, I don't have a problem doing things that I don't understand. I'm just not prone to doing something that the Lord, as far as I can tell in my dialog with Him, just doesn't care about.

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28 minutes ago, MarginOfError said:

So wait, your complaint is that, in an article in the Mormon Culture column -- written by a woman about her experience wearing pants to church -- she didn't talk about dress expectations for men?  And you're claiming that somehow makes her disingenuous?  

I'm not sure I follow.

My complaint is simple.  She calls for empathy and understanding for while showing none. 

 

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9 minutes ago, scottyg said:

...If all one has to wear is jeans and a polo then that is just fine. But if one has nicer clothes and knowingly chooses to dress less respectfully time and time again, then it is likely that they are completely ignorant, or showing signs of rebellion...

But how do you know if what a person wears to church is their "Sunday best"? Have you been given the "Calling" of wardrobe checker to make sure everyone conforms to what you think is appropriate?

M.

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1 minute ago, clbent04 said:

 

@Grunt no one but you is confused that members of the Church come from different backgrounds and have different opinions. 

I'm not confused about that at all. 

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17 minutes ago, MarginOfError said:

This is willfully obtuse. 

This was a cut and dry case of one of God's children disassociating herself from the church because she felt she was being judged on a nose stud. 

I know it might seem hard to comprehend, but people's feelings matter. We can talk about "true conversion" and blah blah blah.  But conversion is process.  One that she had just started. And one she terminated because she felt socially outcast when her conversion had barely taken root. 

If we had seen her instead of a nose piercing, things might have turned out differently.

You can try to spin it as as a cut and dry case... the cut and dry is that a person who chooses to leave the Church over... what was it, a piercing?  never had the testimony to stay in the first place.  Can you imagine the horror of her being told she has to wear special underwear?

Usually, people who refuse to conform for no other reason than... I don't like to conform... have bigger problems than conformity.

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Just now, Maureen said:

But how do you know if what a person wears to church is their "Sunday best"? Have you been given the "Calling" of wardrobe checker to make sure everyone conforms to what you think is appropriate?

M.

What I think is best is them actually wearing their best. No, I have not been given that calling, and I don't know if it is their best or not, but they do.

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34 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

And I've never pretended anything. I've been very open with my faith journey. So....

Gotta be honest, Gator.  I also had no idea you were no longer active in the Church, I just thought you were a non-conventional member.  Perhaps other's knew this and I just missed it, but @Grunt wasn't the only one who was unaware.  Doesn't really change anything, just makes me miss you at church (figuratively speaking).

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1 minute ago, MarginOfError said:

I find this one of the greatest fallacies we teach.  I really do.  It's tantamount to surrendering our agency.

I could not disagree with this point more than I do. Sustaining our leaders even (especially) in their weaknesses is the opposite of surrendering agency. It is a clearly divine exercise thereof.

4 minutes ago, MarginOfError said:

And when it takes its natural extension (which I've heard multiple times) that if we follow the prophet and the prophet is wrong (or whatever priesthood leader), then the fault lies on the prophet, it's outright heretical.

You might consider that a "natural extension", but I do not. I do agree that it's nonsense to say that you will not account to God for what you choose to do, whether or not someone told you to do it.

5 minutes ago, MarginOfError said:

And to be clear, I don't have a problem doing things that I don't understand. I'm just not prone to doing something that the Lord, as far as I can tell in my dialog with Him, just doesn't care about.

Let's say that your son is the bishop or stake president, trying his best to help the congregation out and move the work forward. He's putting 30-40 hours per week into his calling, not including his regular work. After much study and prayer, your son proposes a specific program that, while not evil or injurious, is also (in your judgment) suboptimal. You pray about it, and God does not tell you that, yes, this program is God's own voice. It's "just" the efforts of your son.

So do you tell your son where to park his idea? Or do you, you know, sustain him in his calling?

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6 minutes ago, Grunt said:

I'm not confused about that at all. 

You obviously are if you think there's a need for @MormonGator to preface each post with "ATTENTION - please note before continuing to read my post, I am not an active member of the Church"

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18 minutes ago, scottyg said:

I would hope not. I would hope that someone who is going to partake of the sacrament would have the understanding of what that ordinance really is...what is represents; and have the desire to show reverence for it by doing something as simple as dressing their best.

If all one has to wear is jeans and a polo then that is just fine. But if one has nicer clothes and knowingly chooses to dress less respectfully time and time again, then it is likely that they are completely ignorant, or showing signs of rebellion...and that's just sad, as are your comments about the prophet. I hope you can get over whatever issues you are currently facing with the church, because your current mindset is one that has already led many away from the Lord.

Odd.  My current mindset has probably done more to strengthen my faith in the Lord than anything else in my past.

Prophets and apostles are in a tough spot, because they can't possibly speak to so many people and guide each of them on their unique path. So I get that they will speak in generalities. While a lot of the counsel they have given has proven useful to me, not all of it has.  And that's going to vary a bit from person to person. 

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1 minute ago, clbent04 said:

You obviously are if you think there's a need for @MormonGator to preface each post with "ATTENTION - please note before continuing to read my post, I am not an active member of the Church"

There is a reason that Religion is shown under your Avatar.  It gives everybody the proper context of how to treat your post.  So yes, when you're having a debate with members of the Church about whether to follow your Bishop it would be very important to know that the person telling you not to follow your Bishop is not a member of the Church.

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3 minutes ago, anatess2 said:

There is a reason that Religion is shown under your Avatar.  It gives everybody the proper context of how to treat your post.  So yes, when you're having a debate with members of the Church about whether to follow your Bishop it would be very important to know that the person telling you not to follow your Bishop is not a member of the Church.

Or that the person saying "who cares if you wear jeans to Sacrament" believes that unless the Lord confirms personally to them everything the Prophet says, then it doesn't count.  

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3 minutes ago, Vort said:

I could not disagree with this point more than I do. Sustaining our leaders even (especially) in their weaknesses is the opposite of surrendering agency. It is a clearly divine exercise thereof.

You might consider that a "natural extension", but I do not. I do agree that it's nonsense to say that you will not account to God for what you choose to do, whether or not someone told you to do it.

Let's say that your son is the bishop or stake president, trying his best to help the congregation out and move the work forward. He's putting 30-40 hours per week into his calling, not including his regular work. After much study and prayer, your son proposes a specific program that, while not evil or injurious, is also (in your judgment) suboptimal. You pray about it, and God does not tell you that, yes, this program is God's own voice. It's "just" the efforts of your son.

So do you tell your son where to park his idea? Or do you, you know, sustain him in his calling?

Seeing as I have had no problem up to this point telling any of my priesthood leaders where to park their ideas, I don't see why I'd be any more hesitant to do it with my son. 

And for the record, telling my leaders where to park their ideas has led to some of the most important and faith building discussions I've had. Likewise, some of the ward leaders I work with telling me where to park my ideas has led to some of the most profound moments of clarity that have opened the doors for all kinds of great revelation. Dissent and disagreement can be among the highest forms of loyalty. 

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Just now, MarginOfError said:

Odd.  My current mindset has probably done more to strengthen my faith in the Lord than anything else in my past.

Prophets and apostles are in a tough spot, because they can't possibly speak to so many people and guide each of them on their unique path. So I get that they will speak in generalities. While a lot of the counsel they have given has proven useful to me, not all of it has.  And that's going to vary a bit from person to person. 

No one knows but you and the Lord, but the odds are not on your side. Most people find faith through prayer, service to others, and reading the scriptures - not from their own "mindset"...that is a sandy foundation MOE. The prophets and apostles are indeed in a tough spot...their job isn't easy. With regards to our "unique paths" and counsel and generalities from the prophets, let's just agree to disagree.

My feeling about this entire post/story is that it is not about pants per se, but to simply stir folks up and cause contention. It has definitely done that to many on here today, so I'll be signing off of this one.

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1 minute ago, MarginOfError said:

Dissent and disagreement can be among the highest forms of loyalty.

I agree with this when we're talking about politics and love of country. In general, I'm not sure I agree when it comes to Church or family, though I could make up situations where perhaps I would agree.

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Just now, scottyg said:

No one knows but you and the Lord, but the odds are not on your side. Most people find faith through prayer, service to others, and reading the scriptures - not from their own "mindset"...that is a sandy foundation MOE. The prophets and apostles are indeed in a tough spot...their job isn't easy. With regards to our "unique paths" and counsel and generalities from the prophets, let's just agree to disagree.

My feeling about this entire post/story is that it is not about pants per se, but to simply stir folks up and cause contention. It has definitely done that to many on here today, so I'll be signing off of this one.

You left out dresses and white shirts....would you like to revise?

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Just now, MarginOfError said:

You left out dresses and white shirts....would you like to revise?

Nope...looks good to me. Best of luck to ya.

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1 minute ago, scottyg said:

My feeling about this entire post/story is that it is not about pants per se, but to simply stir folks up and cause contention.

Absolutely, the argument is not about pants per se. I'm willing to allow that Sister Coppersmith's intent wasn't to stir people up and cause contention, but it seems pretty predictable to me that that was the inevitable outcome of her column.

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2 minutes ago, Vort said:

I agree with this when we're talking about politics and love of country. In general, I'm not sure I agree when it comes to Church or family, though I could make up situations where perhaps I would agree.

In the case were you are called to council with the leaders.... then yes... such discussion are part of your calling and stewardship.

In the case were you are not called to council with the leader... then no.... such discussions are not part of your calling and stewardship. 

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2 hours ago, dprh said:
Quote

I furrowed my brow. What? Was this going to stand in the way of the temple?

I said no. “I just think they are cute and comfortable to wear. And church wardrobe standards only require that you wear your best. These pants are as formal as any of my dresses.” He nodded his head and finished with the scripted recommend questions. I wasn’t offended, I wasn’t hurt, but I was surprised.

She specifically says she wasn't offended.

Sure, she said that. Here's what else she said:

Quote

My bishop meant well, but his perspective proves that we have a problem.

His perspective proves no such thing. It proves that Sister Coppersmith doesn't understand what a bishop is supposed to do.

Quote

We too often mistake conformity for worthiness. I had scheduled the temple recommend interview in an effort to keep progressing in my testimony. I was glad to report that I was worthy and happy in the gospel. But all that led up to a question about my wardrobe, and why I looked different than everybody else.

Yes. The question was, "Do you look differently than everybody else because you're rebelling?" That is a perfectly appropriate question for a bishop to ask someone in a temple recommend interview. Why doesn't Sister Coppersmith (or you, for that matter) realize this fact?

Quote

 

As a woman, referenced in this article from December 2012 said, “When a rule is this pointless and this scary to break, it NEEDS to be broken.” If in every ward, a woman feels this uncomfortable using agency to express herself, there is a problem. And if this problem prevents people from feeling safe and accepted at church, we should do all we can to fix it, right?

And so they did in 2012, and in 2013. Maybe they’ll do it again. And maybe, dear Reader, we’ll all understand a little more and react a little differently.

 

Here, Coppersmith goes well beyond talking about principles. She is clearly cheerleading what happened seven years ago, portraying it as a worthy, righteous thing. This, despite the clear evidence (as referenced by JAG) that the principal organizers and participants were antagonistic toward the Church.

The more I read Coppersmith's column, the less likely I feel to give her the benefit of any doubt. I rather suspect Coppersmith knew full well what the whole stupid "pants" thing was about, and that she simply agrees with such public desecration of sacred activities in order to pursue a sociopolitical end.

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25 minutes ago, anatess2 said:

There is a reason that Religion is shown under your Avatar.  It gives everybody the proper context of how to treat your post.  So yes, when you're having a debate with members of the Church about whether to follow your Bishop it would be very important to know that the person telling you not to follow your Bishop is not a member of the Church.

You can label yourself with a religion should you so choose, but @Grunt apparently wants to take it one step further and have people specify their level activity with the Church or what their level of worthiness is.  I'm surprised to see the guy back on this forum since he has such a low tolerance for anyone he perceives as less worthy and faithful than he is. 

Edited by clbent04

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5 hours ago, MarginOfError said:

I'm not sure those trends are as strong as you might think.  Truthfully, I think the only thing that I've learned from the fates of those particular individuals is that bad publicity is more likely to get you in trouble than the things they stood for.

I participated in Wear Pants to Church Day. I rarely wear white shirts. I refuse to shave unless I'm going into work. I am vocally feminist and unabashed about my social preferences. I am highly critical of many of the Church's policies, and have refused to serve in youth programs on the grounds that I refuse to run a program bound to all of the constraints the Church imposes. I have publicly complained about the language used in temple ordinances (prior to last year's changes). When the November policy was first released, I described it publicly, in Church, in front of the bishop and the entire ward, as a foul and disgusting policy.

The penalty for all that behavior has been more influence, more responsibility, and more trust.

And I'm not the only one. I've seen more and more men and women in my stake move in similar directions (with varying extremes).  Heck, I've even watched my bishop get asked if women are treated fairly in the Church and give the response "[chuckle]. No, of course not."  

So it seems like the hash tag you're looking for is #butitsdifferentwhenitisntinthenews

I would reply, MOE, that you are more of an exception than you perhaps give yourself credit for (and I mean that in the most complementary sense of the word).  And, frankly, you’ve probably benefited from a remarkably tolerant bishop (perhaps you bought some orthodox street creed by your regular use of the terms “foul and disgusting” to describe a broad variety of activities such as theft, dishonesty, alcoholism, obscenity, abortion, and sodomy; so it didn’t seem so shocking when you also used that phrase to describe an unpalatable Church policy? ;) ).

But whereas you have stayed in, I could name four people—progressives, all—who have left the Church, from my ward alone, in the last five years.  Not counting numerous passers-by and a couple of long-time members here at 3H, and at least a good dozen folks from various bloggernacle sites.

As for the hashtag—that applies specifically to women who insist men oughtn’t take offense at some women’s manner of dress, but insist on taking offense at some men’s manner of dress. 

 

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I thought to respond with some example - changed my mind and will go a different direction.  I wear a white shirt and tie - not just for church but for the full Sabbath day (though there have been some exceptions).  This is not a casual thing nor is it a public display - what it is - is a Sabbath day covenant I have personally made.  Rather than argue any points - it is my covenant.  I have never heard anyone talk about wearing something that might be in question and say that it is because of a sacred covenant with G-d that they do so.

If I were to give any advice - it would be to keep the Sabbath holy by personal covenant and if you must be "commanded" of all that you think appropriate or not appropriate for the Sabbath - you are not close to keeping the Sabbath holy.  Be anxious to do   all you can to draw closer to G-d.  If you are interested in doing the minimum possible - I feel you have missed something important but that is up to you to work out with the G-d you worship.  So if anyone asks you why you do something on the Sabbath or at church - you can say it is because of my personal covenant with G-d (rather than make up excuses).

 

The Traveler

 

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3 minutes ago, Traveler said:

I thought to respond with some example - changed my mind and will go a different direction.  I wear a white shirt and tie - not just for church but for the full Sabbath day (though there have been some exceptions).  This is not a casual thing nor is it a public display - what it is - is a Sabbath day covenant I have personally made.  Rather than argue any points - it is my covenant.  I have never heard anyone talk about wearing something that might be in question and say that it is because of a sacred covenant with G-d that they do so.

If I were to give any advice - it would be to keep the Sabbath holy by personal covenant and if you must be "commanded" of all that you think appropriate or not appropriate for the Sabbath - you are not close to keeping the Sabbath holy.  Be anxious to do   all you can to draw closer to G-d.  If you are interested in doing the minimum possible - I feel you have missed something important but that is up to you to work out with the G-d you worship.  So if anyone asks you why you do something on the Sabbath or at church - you can say it is because of my personal covenant with G-d (rather than make up excuses).

 

The Traveler

 

We had the Elders over for dinner a few weeks ago and they taught a great lesson on the Sabbath.   I've been doing it wrong, and now follow your example as best as I can for the same reason.  

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