Bishop A came at about 6pm to see Diana and me

The sacrament meeting was mostly a dirge

He is a good man, and I like him, but he appears somewhat overawed by his responsibility, and even a little frightened of dealing with me. The three of us talked, and I was open about my feelings. I would have shared my specific concerns if he had allowed it. He said he feels I am on the edge of apostasy, and warned me not to speak to others about what I have discovered through my research, or he might have to take action against me, which he didn’t want to do because he admires me, and remembers how I welcomed him when he first moved into the ward. He hoped I would choose to become “a wise old owl”, someone who would learn to say not much at church if I knew differently from the rest of the congregation, and he hoped that what swap finder I did say would be aimed at strengthening people’s faith. I said I was not so sure that playing that role was on either my agenda or the Lord’s. I told him I really need further guidance and answers to my questions. He sympathised but admitted he knows really very little about church history and the things I have encountered, and did not want to hear any details. I told him that as far as I was concerned apostasy is not the act of confronting history, but is more commonly encountered in the kind of idolatry which places priesthood leaders on pedestals, so that their actions may never be questioned.

In fact Diana said to me, “it’s boring but at least it’s not controversial”, as if to reassure me

I decided then and there that I really can no longer associate with any of that carry-on. I simply cannot un-know what I know, and I cannot pretend; to do so would be a recipe for an implosion of the soul. I confess I am a little hurt at hearing that the Bishop wouldn’t trust me as I am “on the precipice of apostasy”, but those are only words to describe matters from his limited perspective. He told me some obvious things I have long known, like the church is not perfect, and no man in it is. That is self-evident from the history, but that isn’t the problem. I wish they would stop covering up. I just wish they would say it from the stand more often, and that the church would fess up to its besmirched history and repent like any decent organisation would do if it genuinely did stand for truth. Bp A could not answer me when I asked why the Lord’s church deals in lies, as it does. He would not discuss any historical anomalies with me. I could tell he was afraid of finding out what I know, and so the long and the short of it is that he cannot and will not be able to assist me.

We had tithing settlement. I am a full tithe payer at present, but I am seriously considering stopping that, as I feel the money is being used to mislead, and should be put to better use.

After more than 37 years of being a full tithe payer I cancelled my standing order later that same month. I continued to live what I considered to be a good and moral life, but my attendance at church of necessity also dropped off, and by 2010 it was a rarity for me to attend at all. When I did go it was to support my son or his family. One such occasion was on 25 th , when I recorded:

Afterwards Bro. B, (our new home teacher now that I am off the bishop’s own list), walked out with me to the car, and chatted with me in the car park. We have known each other for more than 25 years, and he is someone I truly respect. I told him I was happy to speak with him but warned him that I might be taking him into topic areas he doesn’t like. He said that I should have had someone to talk to. I told him I was told 15 months ago by Bp A that I must not speak outside my family to anyone about my feelings, upon pain of facing disciplinary action, but more recently he had relented and said I should be very selective if I talk to friends about my concerns. I said I don’t blame Bp A for leaving me alone because he is inexperienced and doesn’t want to know these things himself.

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