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  • Writer's pictureJacob Hansen

Gordon Monson should know better.

Gordon Monson is a Mormon sports writer for the Salt Lake Tribune (a publication started by the Godbeites to attack church leaders and policies- true story). He continued the papers long tradition recently by weighing in on what he thinks church leaders are getting wrong. Below are a few of the "interesting" ideas from his article.

Things he thinks leaders should change.

  • Give the OK for playing and working in sports on Sunday.

  • Make adherence to the Word of Wisdom optional

  • Reduce tithing from 10% to 5%.

  • Boil down temple-worthiness interviews to three questions

  • Swap out the narrow proclamation on the family for this different, more expansive proclamation

  • Apologize for policies and preachments of the past and present that were and are out of step with a loving God, more specifically, all aspects of racism, sexism and homophobia

Some quotes.

“Family is love without motive. It’s love without conditions.” - Gordon Monson

In his article he explicitly wants to change the definition of family in the proclamation. Instead of the fundamental unit of society being couples having and raising children, family is just anyone who unconditionally loves each other. Which, of course, he does not define but which he implies is some sort of unconditional affirmation (which is not the way Christ defined love).

Also if family is defined as "love without motive, love without conditions", I wonder if or why he would oppose queer polygamy advocates like fellow member of the church Blaire Ostler who makes that exact same argument to support bringing back polygamy, but a more "expansive" polygamy.

"The Queer Polygamy Model leaves room for same-gender and same-sex sealings, whether they are non-romantic, such as between my sister and me, or homosexual, such as between two wives. Under the Queer Polygamy model, plural marriage may include multi-gendered partnerships, such as sealings among sister-wives that may or may not allow sexual relations between them. If a man is married to two women and the women are bisexual, they may choose to be sealed to each other and have a romantic and sexual relationship with each other as well as with their common husband." - Queer Mormon Theology by Blaire Ostler


A recent quote I read: “There’s no commandment that commands anyone to make sure other people keep commandments.” - Gordon Monson

Well that quote is not in the scriptures... lets see what the actual scriptures say:

"The teacher’s duty is to watch over the church always, and be with and strengthen them; And see that there is no iniquity in the church, neither hardness with each other, neither lying, backbiting, nor evil speaking; And see that the church meet together often, and also see that all the members do their duty." - Doctrine and Covenants 17

"And they were strict to observe that there should be no iniquity among them; and whoso was found to commit iniquity, and three witnesses of the church did condemn them before the elders, and if they repented not, and confessed not, their names were blotted out, and they were not numbered among the people of Christ." - Moroni 6 "Let the residue of the elders ​​​watch​ over the churches, and declare the word in the regions round about them; and let them ​​​labor​ with their own hands that there be no ​​​idolatry​ nor wickedness practiced."- Doctrine and Covenants 52


You weren’t in the position or frame of mind at a certain time in your life to do the mission thing? So what - Gordon Monson.

Yeah so what if you reject your priesthood duties. It might be hard. Do you really think Christ expects the holders of his priesthood to sacrifice?

"He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it." - Jesus (the real one)


Make it clear that eternity is a long, long time… and if people in this brief life do not always get or agree with what the church is doing or why it takes the positions it does, and they don’t cling to the iron rod or stay on the “covenant path,” if they wander a bit or a lot, they won’t necessarily be sentenced to some miserable, hellish prison in the Great Beyond, isolated from whom and what they love. They will be able to progress forever, with greater understanding, and know dividers between the three degrees of glory in the afterlife are more way stations than they are inescapable brick walls. - Gordon Monson.

Does Gordon recall the story of Nehor?

“And he also testified unto the people that all mankind should be saved at the last day, and that they need not fear nor tremble, but that they might lift up their heads and rejoice; for the Lord had created all men, and had also redeemed all men; and, in the end, all men should have eternal life.” (Alma 1:4)

Should I go with Gordon or the scriptures?

And there shall also be many which shall say: …And if it so be that we are guilty, God will beat us with a few stripes, and at last we shall be saved in the kingdom of God. Yea, and there shall be many which shall teach after this manner, false and vain and foolish doctrines” (2 Nephi 28:8-9)

"I beseech of you that ye do not procrastinate the day of your repentance until the end; for after this day of life, which is given us to prepare for eternity, behold, if we do not improve our time while in this life, then cometh the night of darkness wherein there can be no labor performed. Ye cannot say, when ye are brought to that awful crisis, that I will repent, that I will return to my God. Nay, ye cannot say this; for that same spirit which doth possess your bodies at the time that ye go out of this life, that same spirit will have power to possess your body in that eternal world." (Alma 34:33-34)


Some may just laugh thinking this is just a little light eccentricity. But if you read his article he is quite serious even if he makes a few funny one liners. More troubling, is the fact that Gordon is a household name to people who closely follow sports in Utah. He is certainly a significant figure in the large intermountain west sports community. Perhaps Brother Monson and his priesthood leaders should reflect on his implicit/explicit public denunciation of church practice and the review the following question in his next interview.

“Do you support or promote any teachings, practices, or doctrine contrary to those of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?"

Hopefully they can discuss this so it does not become a pattern. From the General Handbook of the church:

As used here, apostasy refers to a member engaging in any of the following:

* Repeatedly acting in clear and deliberate public opposition to the Church, its doctrine, its policies, or its leaders

* Persisting in teaching as Church doctrine what is not Church doctrine after being corrected by the bishop or stake president

* Showing a pattern of intentionally working to weaken the faith and activity of Church members

The Savior taught the Nephites that they should continue to minister to a person who has sinned. “But if he repent not he shall not be numbered among my people, that he may not destroy my people” (3 Nephi 18:31).

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