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my struggles at church

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* fasting
MoBob always makes fun of me because I can't last beyond 3pm on fast & testimony Sundays. At times I have stooped as low as to steal goldfish from the nursery stash when the kiddies are at singing time.

* family history
I haven't gone beyond my grandparents.

* missionary work
I tell myself that I compensate for laziness in the US by going out on splits with the sister missionaries when I'm overseas.

* scripture reading
I've combined my love of an empty inbox with my daily readings by subscribing to Read the Scriptures which sends a chapter a day. Otherwise I always forget.

On the other hand, I've always had a temple recommend, paid tithing, worn my garments, accepted whatever calling, and we have enough food storage.

A mixed record, in the end.

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On October 10th, 2008 07:49 pm (UTC), nadyezhda commented:
Since I am not Mormon (though I grew up in a Mormon-established city and had lots of high school classmates who were) I hope you don't mind me asking you to explain some of the things you posted about? What sort of tithing does the church "expect"? What kinds of garments are there, what does it mean when you say you "accepted whatever calling," and tell me about the food storage aspect? :) Thanks!
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On October 10th, 2008 11:01 pm (UTC), jandjsalmon replied:
OOOh can I answer? I just saw it and it itches me when I can explain. Sylvia, feel free to smack me if I'm overstepping.

Tithing is 10% of your increase. You surely don't get kicked out for not paying a full tithe, but it's encouraged and part of being a full participant.

Garments are sacred articles of clothing for those who have attended our temple. I always use the Hajab or the Yamulka as an example. Those are outward reflections of a Muslim woman or a jewish Man's inward convictions. That is what the garment is. And we promise that we will wear it at all times (well - except for shagging/swimming etc.).

And accepting callings... not many positions in our church is paid. in fact, almost ALL are volunteered. We believe in serving one another. The Bishop of a ward - so the leader of a congregation, offers positions to people based on prayer and divine guidence. He offers you a 'call' to be the Sunday School teacher, or the Chorister, or the Nursery Leader. And you can choose to accept a calling or not - none of it's required - but it shows your humility when you accept any calling asked of you.

And food storage - I SOOO fail at this one BTW - we are encouraged to have a full year's supply of necessary food stuffs, because, let's face it - the world is a scary place, people lose jobs, threats of calamity such as tornado and hurricane are everywhere. So yeah - we've been encouraged to have a year's supply.

And SYLVIA - I SOOO fail at missionary work. It's to the point that when I teach SS and it's a topic I want to skip right over it - so yeah, not all of us can be perfect at everything. It's the 'getting better' that is the point. *hugs you*
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On October 12th, 2008 12:04 am (UTC), ticklethepear replied:
Thanks for responding - you did much better than I would've!

*hugs back*
On October 14th, 2008 07:21 pm (UTC), (Anonymous) replied:
This really helps, thanks. I wasn't sure if the tithing rate was the same as other Christian denominations or not. I'm still confused on the garments, though--with most other faiths, I know what they are (i.e., I know a yarmulke is a head covering, and I know hijab is a body covering that has various interpretations, etc.) but I'm still confused as to LDS garments. Do people wear prayer shawls under their clothes? More devout women only wear skirts? What items of clothing are required for those attending temple?

Are bishops good at assigning you tasks that you are suited for, or that you can rise to the occasion to complete? For instance, what if you would make a terrible teacher? Are you required to try anyway?

I admired the missionaries I used to ride the bus with in Boston. They did a very good job of being friendly and non-confrontational. I have a lot of respect for the Mormon community. I can't think of another such group where how an individual behaves can determine outsiders' impressions of the group, and where every member of that group I've ever met has been kind, friendly, and outgoing, leaving me with a great impression of the community as a whole, even if the religious beliefs I have are incompatable with Mormonism.
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On October 14th, 2008 08:34 pm (UTC), jandjsalmon replied:
No problem at all. As for garments - they are actually knickers. Well, underwear. It's a small undershirt and shorts. Not prayer shawls. In fact, I only actually have normal knickers for shagging my hubby (well, not normal - usually naughtier than normal - how's THAT for TMI when you're a stranger?), the week I have my period (again TMI - sorry), and when I'm working out. They are required once you have attended the temple. And as for skirts - I only wear skirts on Sunday or when I'm going to the temple or a special church activity. That is about reverence and respect. Not fundamentalism or devoutness. Normally I wear pajama pants in my house or jeans outside of my house. My clothes are modest - they must cover my garments - but we are taught to be modest in our dress whether we are temple attenders or not.

Bishops sometimes DO NOT play to your strengths - but we believe that calls come from Heavenly Father and HE sometimes wants us to learn how to be better at something so sometimes we get put in the Primary when we are completely rubbish with children. And trust me - I have had Sunday School classes with HORRIBLE teachers. Sometimes we luck out with people who just have a talent for teaching - it varies. You aren't required to do anything - sometimes people say no to callings, but in general, people don't. They just struggle through and perhaps learn something new. It's the same when some people are asked to give talks in church (since we don't have a paid clergy - we don't get sermons - the congregation takes turns speaking on assigned topics).

My husband was a missionary. I am incredibly proud of him. And I hope my boys both go on one. I know plenty of members who aren't cheerful - but most of us are pretty darn good people - or at least we're trying to be.
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On October 10th, 2008 08:07 pm (UTC), seegrim commented:
Well, the important thing is that you're trying to better yourself. Right? :)
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On October 12th, 2008 12:05 am (UTC), ticklethepear replied:
That's true. Though I'm sure I could make a better effort!
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On October 12th, 2008 02:06 am (UTC), seegrim replied:
Couldn't we all?
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On October 12th, 2008 02:32 am (UTC), ticklethepear replied:
Too right!
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On October 10th, 2008 08:16 pm (UTC), dewgirl commented:
Trust me, you're doing waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay better than me.
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On October 12th, 2008 12:05 am (UTC), ticklethepear replied:
I bet you're having more fun though! :)
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On October 11th, 2008 04:10 am (UTC), mysteena commented:
I just had a small missionary guilt twinge today. My pat. blessings says something like I'll be a good missionary through my active and excited participation in church activities. Today when my coworker asked me what I'm doing this weekend, I answered "I have some church thing but I don't really feel like going to it."

shame on me.
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On October 12th, 2008 12:06 am (UTC), ticklethepear replied:
On me too - I consider any conference weekend a free pass to skip out.
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