Is what you tell your bishop really private?

  • user warning: Table './exmo_08072012/cache_filter' is marked as crashed and should be repaired query: SELECT data, created, headers, expire, serialized FROM cache_filter WHERE cid = '2:da8cfe2b887aa871f9565a1422ff9beb' in /home/exmormon/public_html/d6/drupal/includes/cache.inc on line 27.
  • user warning: Table './exmo_08072012/cache_filter' is marked as crashed and should be repaired query: UPDATE cache_filter SET data = '<p>by Utahorbust Dec 2011</p>\n<p>So how often is it that a person confesses or confides something in their bishop and the information is divulged and spread throughout the ward. It seems likely to me that a bishop goes home and tells his wife and then she tells some lady in the RS and then it\'s all over the ward.</p>\n<p>Is this common?</p>\n<hr />\nsummer<br />\nIs breach of confidentiality common? Yes.<br />\nThere have been many stories on this board of things that members said to the bishop in private getting around the ward. This has happened even when members have asked the bishop for confidentialiy.\n<p>It is wisest not to tell anything to the bishop that you don\'t want to get around.</p>\n<hr />\n<p>JJ<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nConfidentiality in the church is defined as information to be held confidential - except for those people who \"need to know\". For example, the Elder\'s Quorum President, the Relief Society President, etc.<br />\nThen there is the natural spreading of information to/from the Bishop\'s wife, etc., etc.</p>\n<hr />\n<p>kimball<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nWhen I told my bishop I lost my testimony, not even the first counsellor seemed to know a month later. After several months I discovered the rumor going around at church about me was that I was inactive. I would think that would have been important enough to tell, but he didn\'t, even though I never asked him to keep it secret.</p>\n<p>So yeah, some of them do keep secrets.</p>\n<hr />\nsonoma<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nOne of my earliest BIC memories is hearing my parents talk about how the wife of a counselor was gossiping about details from a confession that the bishop had shared with her husband. I was VERY young at the time, but remember being TOTALLY shocked that Mormons would do such things.\n<hr />\n<p>Stunted<br />\nHow do you know the bishop didn\'t start the inactive rumor to prevent the truth from getting out?<br />\nIn my experience the Bishop always puts the church first. If he doesn\'t then the SP or the area authority will set him straight. I don\'t know your bishop, maybe he is a stand up guy. But even then I have no trouble thinking he would choose to spin things for the benefit of the cult rather than to protect a secret.</p>\n<p>Yeah, I\'m pretty jaded.</p>\n<hr />\n<p>mia<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nWant to know something about someone at church that is none of your business? Find the ward gossip (self appointed calling) they most likely will fill you in.</p>\n<hr />\n<p>grubbygert<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nit\'s almost a guarantee that whoever is at PEC is going to know - maybe not the details but at least the gist of it... the bishop will likely at least express his \'concern\' for you and your family in PEC</p>\n<p>it\'s been years so i might get the details wrong but just assume that the following (and most likely their spouses) will know immediately:</p>\n<p>the 2 councilors<br />\nexecutive secretary<br />\nRS president<br />\nEQ president</p>\n<p>so including spouses that\'s 8 more people in the know...</p>\n<p>and then the EQ &amp; RS presidents pass something on to their coucilors/secretaries</p>\n<p>again, add spouses into the mix and in a very short time basically anybody who is anybody in the ward knows at least the gist of it</p>\n<hr />\nGlo<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nA person\'s \"problems\" are discussed in various meetings under the guise of helping them.\n<p>Just because you haven\'t heard all the gossip does not mean it hasn\'t been whispered about.</p>\n<p>Never divulge anything to a bishop or SP that you do not want made public. Because it will be.</p>\n<hr />\n<p>Cheryl<br />\nSpreading gossip is how many mormons try to help.<br />\nThe thinking goes, members can say and do the right things to Keep others faithful if they know their situation.</p>\n<hr />\nThomas $. Monson<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?\n<p>\"the Mormon CB radio\" is what that phenomenon is called in Italy.<br />\nSee also <a href=\"http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=31772838724\" title=\"http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=31772838724\">http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=31772838724</a><br />\n(in Italian)</p>\n<hr />\ngoldenrule<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nOh Lord in the last ward I attended, anything Bishop said to his wife or the RS Pres spread round the ward like wildfire. The gossiping got so bad the RS Pres was released after just 5 months due to complaints about her mouth.\n<hr />\n<p>goldenrule<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nThat usually is the Bishop\'s wife in my experience.</p>\n<hr />\nkimball<br />\nRe: How do you know the bishop didn\'t start the inactive rumor to prevent the truth from getting out?<br />\nI suppose that\'s possible. One of the first things he asked me when I first talked to him was to not tell anyone else at church about the things I had learned. He really is a hopeless case, but I like to think that the rumor started simply because I wasn\'t going to meetings any more.\n<hr />\nmatt<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private? No. Your secrets would get less views on Youtube.<br />\nEven if you had 10,000 hits.\n<hr />\n<p>Misfit<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nDon\'t forget the Stake President and his 2 counselors, and the High Council, if you are a melcheesideck priesthood holder and the bishop decides that a court is necessary.</p>\n<hr />\nNeverMo in CA<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nGlo Wrote:<br />\n-------------------------------------------------------<br />\n\"A person\'s \"problems\" are discussed in various<br />\n meetings under the guise of helping them.\"\n<p>Funny you should phrase it that way...although I\'m a NeverMo, a Mo friend of mine once shared something extremely personal I\'d written and emailed to her with the other board members of a club we both belong to. She did this at one of our club\'s meetings (which she knew I would not be able to attend) without asking me if it would be okay to share my problems/email with others. She actually printed out copies of it for the other board members to read!</p>\n<p>When I later found out, she said it was because she had been very concerned and thought I could use some help. While I did feel her concern was genuine, I was really annoyed--and frankly, shocked--that she felt it was appropriate to share such a personal message with others without my permission (and no, it was not an emergency situation like I\'d threatened to commit suicide or anything).</p>\n<p>Incidentally, only one club member called me or reached out to me in any way after that to see how I was doing, and it was NOT my Mo friend. I wonder from reading these comments here if my friend\'s behavior is something she has learned as a result of her religious upbringing--like she really thought going to someone else without my knowing would somehow result in my getting help.</p>\n<hr />\nderrida<br />\nRe: Spreading gossip is how many mormons try to help.<br />\nYes, the premise is manipulation, massaging of information and egos. That is what Jesus wants.\n<hr />\nderrida<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nNo.\n<p>jf<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nDuring my divorce, I had meetings with my bishop every two weeks. Then in the legal deposition, my ex-wife\'s attorney informed me that the Church was considering me for excommunication, which my bishop had never said to me.</p>\n<p>I went back to my bishop and asked, \"Am I being considered for excommunication?\" and he answered yes.</p>\n<hr />\ninformer<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nNo.\n<hr />\njackol<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nNot a chance. In my personal experience it was never kept secret.\n<hr />\nonlyme<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nIn my ward we also had:a clerk, high priest group leader, ym president, yw president, primary president, ward mission leader, missionaries, and employment specialist. The bishop liked his PEC group to be large.\n<p>Then the home teachers and visiting teachers were informed of the issue too. So \"only\" maybe 10% of the ward would be informed of the issue formally.</p>\n<hr />\nlily<br />\nReminds me of what it was like in the Christian churches I went to<br />\nLOADS of info/gossip was spread around under the guise of sharing \"prayer requests.\"\n<p>\"We should all pray for So-and-So because I heard she has been having sex....\"</p>\n<hr />\nguynoirprivateeye<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nbut... when it comes to sexual child abusers.... Would they blab that out?\n<p>Im SURE a lot of ppl \'thought\' they had confidential relationship w Bp, and soon disappointed to learn o.wise.</p>\n<p>ChurchCo is PURPOSELY AMBIGUOUS/DECEPTIVE ABOUT THEIR POLICIES/PROCEDURES SO THEY CAN CHANGE WITHOUT NOTICE!</p>\n<hr />\n<p>marisa<br />\na bishop at byu-H<br />\nWhen I was at BYU-H, my nishop\'s wife bore her testimony. In it, she told of how the things that we students told him kept him awake at night, but he never told her any specifics of who or what. I suspect he didn\'t tell others unless it was a Melchizidek - high council court sort of thing. The only gossip in that student ward was about who did or didn\'t take the sacrament. He tried to squash thoses rumors as well. I think he was an extreme exception to the rule. Other wards I\'ve belonged to have had at least three or four ward criers who felt it was their self-appointed mission to enlighten everyone in the ward and the neighborhood about anything that even might be true.</p>\n<hr />\nThe Man in Black<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nIn at least one ward I was in the Bishop would regularly divulge very private information in ward council. Additionally, ward council was the time for the RS and EQ presidents and other leaders to bring up \"issues\" which usually meant discussing people who weren\'t in line or had \"problems\" or \"struggles.\" One time we discussed a formerly excommunicated member who wanted to be rebabtized and he had us all take a turn commenting on the guys personal problems and if they had been resolved.\n<p>So basically no from what I\'ve seen. Confidentially may exist but I\'ve seen a lot of cases where it does not.</p>\n<hr />\nSeneca<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nWhen I came out of the non-believing closet I assumed the bishop would tell his counselors and the PEC. Shortly thereafter my family and I started getting plenty of personal invites to church, RS meetings, basketball, etc. The member of the HC who is in my ward and also my dentist magically made my dental bills (which were substantial) disappear. He had never done anything like this in the past and made it clear before the gift that our church relationship had no bearing on his dental practice. I also got an invite to discuss my concerns with the Stake President with whom I had never before spoken. I\'m glad my expectations were that the Bishop would tell everyone otherwise I would have been very disappointed.\n<hr />\nUtahorbust<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nI\'m not Catholic, but I do believe that what Catholics divulge to their Priest is actually held confidential. I think most real clergy do a better job keeping private things private.\n<hr />\nVultureTamer<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nI could tell you stories. But have realized that I\'ve probably already shared too many specific details, and don\'t want to see printouts of what I\'ve posted here, floating around on the back of the RS weekly bulletin.\n<p>So suffice it to say, that even the most careful and trusted of bishops, has faltered a time or two, in my own personal experience. Human nature, people. I can\'t imagine the burden to have to keep everyone\'s garbage so close to the vest that the *only* person you are allowed to counsel with is Jesus? Wow. I imagine that to be a very one-way conversation.</p>\n<p>I\'d at least have to call my Mom. (I guess that\'s why women are weak &amp; never would be allowed to have the P-hood, because we talk too much, right?)</p>\n<hr />\nCheryl<br />\nHis wife said these problems kept him awake at night? That indicates she knew what was keeping him awake.<br />\nHow did she know?\n<p>Because he told her.</p>\n<hr />\nguynoirprivateeye<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nthis begs a wider question:\n<p>What are the \'rules of engagement\' between a member &amp; leadership?</p>\n<p>A. Anything that leadership wants them to be, Silly Rabbit!</p>\n<hr />\nsummer<br />\nI was raised Catholic, and that\'s true.<br />\nThe priests also officially don\'t know who is making the confession because there is a screen between the priest and the member that reduces the view to a silhouette. Unofficially they may recognize your voice. But they will never divulge what you say to them.\n<p>Catholics also have the option of making their confession at a RC church where the priest doesn\'t know them at all.</p>\n<hr />\ncludgie<br />\nIf you were to tell your bishop that you have a \"worthiness\" problem...<br />\n...he very possibly might say right in \"priesthood executive committee\" meeting on Sunday morning, Utahorbust has a problem with worthiness. You should remember him in your prayers.\" So now your problem has been multiplied by the number of people present (usually about six). If that weren\'t bad enough, they bring you up again in ward welfare meeting, so then some 12-15 people get to hear you have a worthiness problem.\n<hr />\nnewfreedom<br />\nRe: Is what you tell your bishop really private?<br />\nNope. I remember when I first came back to church, the first few months I talked a lot to the bishop because of struggles I was facing. A few times when he spoke in sacrament meeting, I noticed his topics were related to what I told him. Of course he didn\'t use my name but I was still upset. That kept me from talking to him again about anything personal, including tithing settlement.\n<p>\"Recovery from Mormonism - www.exmormon.org\"</p>\n', created = 1495763058, expire = 1495849458, headers = '', serialized = 0 WHERE cid = '2:da8cfe2b887aa871f9565a1422ff9beb' in /home/exmormon/public_html/d6/drupal/includes/cache.inc on line 112.

by Utahorbust Dec 2011

So how often is it that a person confesses or confides something in their bishop and the information is divulged and spread throughout the ward. It seems likely to me that a bishop goes home and tells his wife and then she tells some lady in the RS and then it's all over the ward.

Is this common?


summer
Is breach of confidentiality common? Yes.
There have been many stories on this board of things that members said to the bishop in private getting around the ward. This has happened even when members have asked the bishop for confidentialiy.

It is wisest not to tell anything to the bishop that you don't want to get around.


JJ
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
Confidentiality in the church is defined as information to be held confidential - except for those people who "need to know". For example, the Elder's Quorum President, the Relief Society President, etc.
Then there is the natural spreading of information to/from the Bishop's wife, etc., etc.


kimball
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
When I told my bishop I lost my testimony, not even the first counsellor seemed to know a month later. After several months I discovered the rumor going around at church about me was that I was inactive. I would think that would have been important enough to tell, but he didn't, even though I never asked him to keep it secret.

So yeah, some of them do keep secrets.


sonoma
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
One of my earliest BIC memories is hearing my parents talk about how the wife of a counselor was gossiping about details from a confession that the bishop had shared with her husband. I was VERY young at the time, but remember being TOTALLY shocked that Mormons would do such things.

Stunted
How do you know the bishop didn't start the inactive rumor to prevent the truth from getting out?
In my experience the Bishop always puts the church first. If he doesn't then the SP or the area authority will set him straight. I don't know your bishop, maybe he is a stand up guy. But even then I have no trouble thinking he would choose to spin things for the benefit of the cult rather than to protect a secret.

Yeah, I'm pretty jaded.


mia
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
Want to know something about someone at church that is none of your business? Find the ward gossip (self appointed calling) they most likely will fill you in.


grubbygert
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
it's almost a guarantee that whoever is at PEC is going to know - maybe not the details but at least the gist of it... the bishop will likely at least express his 'concern' for you and your family in PEC

it's been years so i might get the details wrong but just assume that the following (and most likely their spouses) will know immediately:

the 2 councilors
executive secretary
RS president
EQ president

so including spouses that's 8 more people in the know...

and then the EQ & RS presidents pass something on to their coucilors/secretaries

again, add spouses into the mix and in a very short time basically anybody who is anybody in the ward knows at least the gist of it


Glo
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
A person's "problems" are discussed in various meetings under the guise of helping them.

Just because you haven't heard all the gossip does not mean it hasn't been whispered about.

Never divulge anything to a bishop or SP that you do not want made public. Because it will be.


Cheryl
Spreading gossip is how many mormons try to help.
The thinking goes, members can say and do the right things to Keep others faithful if they know their situation.


Thomas $. Monson
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?

"the Mormon CB radio" is what that phenomenon is called in Italy.
See also http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=31772838724
(in Italian)


goldenrule
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
Oh Lord in the last ward I attended, anything Bishop said to his wife or the RS Pres spread round the ward like wildfire. The gossiping got so bad the RS Pres was released after just 5 months due to complaints about her mouth.

goldenrule
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
That usually is the Bishop's wife in my experience.


kimball
Re: How do you know the bishop didn't start the inactive rumor to prevent the truth from getting out?
I suppose that's possible. One of the first things he asked me when I first talked to him was to not tell anyone else at church about the things I had learned. He really is a hopeless case, but I like to think that the rumor started simply because I wasn't going to meetings any more.
matt
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private? No. Your secrets would get less views on Youtube.
Even if you had 10,000 hits.

Misfit
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
Don't forget the Stake President and his 2 counselors, and the High Council, if you are a melcheesideck priesthood holder and the bishop decides that a court is necessary.


NeverMo in CA
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
Glo Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
"A person's "problems" are discussed in various
meetings under the guise of helping them."

Funny you should phrase it that way...although I'm a NeverMo, a Mo friend of mine once shared something extremely personal I'd written and emailed to her with the other board members of a club we both belong to. She did this at one of our club's meetings (which she knew I would not be able to attend) without asking me if it would be okay to share my problems/email with others. She actually printed out copies of it for the other board members to read!

When I later found out, she said it was because she had been very concerned and thought I could use some help. While I did feel her concern was genuine, I was really annoyed--and frankly, shocked--that she felt it was appropriate to share such a personal message with others without my permission (and no, it was not an emergency situation like I'd threatened to commit suicide or anything).

Incidentally, only one club member called me or reached out to me in any way after that to see how I was doing, and it was NOT my Mo friend. I wonder from reading these comments here if my friend's behavior is something she has learned as a result of her religious upbringing--like she really thought going to someone else without my knowing would somehow result in my getting help.


derrida
Re: Spreading gossip is how many mormons try to help.
Yes, the premise is manipulation, massaging of information and egos. That is what Jesus wants.
derrida
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
No.

jf
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
During my divorce, I had meetings with my bishop every two weeks. Then in the legal deposition, my ex-wife's attorney informed me that the Church was considering me for excommunication, which my bishop had never said to me.

I went back to my bishop and asked, "Am I being considered for excommunication?" and he answered yes.


informer
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
No.
jackol
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
Not a chance. In my personal experience it was never kept secret.
onlyme
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
In my ward we also had:a clerk, high priest group leader, ym president, yw president, primary president, ward mission leader, missionaries, and employment specialist. The bishop liked his PEC group to be large.

Then the home teachers and visiting teachers were informed of the issue too. So "only" maybe 10% of the ward would be informed of the issue formally.


lily
Reminds me of what it was like in the Christian churches I went to
LOADS of info/gossip was spread around under the guise of sharing "prayer requests."

"We should all pray for So-and-So because I heard she has been having sex...."


guynoirprivateeye
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
but... when it comes to sexual child abusers.... Would they blab that out?

Im SURE a lot of ppl 'thought' they had confidential relationship w Bp, and soon disappointed to learn o.wise.

ChurchCo is PURPOSELY AMBIGUOUS/DECEPTIVE ABOUT THEIR POLICIES/PROCEDURES SO THEY CAN CHANGE WITHOUT NOTICE!


marisa
a bishop at byu-H
When I was at BYU-H, my nishop's wife bore her testimony. In it, she told of how the things that we students told him kept him awake at night, but he never told her any specifics of who or what. I suspect he didn't tell others unless it was a Melchizidek - high council court sort of thing. The only gossip in that student ward was about who did or didn't take the sacrament. He tried to squash thoses rumors as well. I think he was an extreme exception to the rule. Other wards I've belonged to have had at least three or four ward criers who felt it was their self-appointed mission to enlighten everyone in the ward and the neighborhood about anything that even might be true.


The Man in Black
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
In at least one ward I was in the Bishop would regularly divulge very private information in ward council. Additionally, ward council was the time for the RS and EQ presidents and other leaders to bring up "issues" which usually meant discussing people who weren't in line or had "problems" or "struggles." One time we discussed a formerly excommunicated member who wanted to be rebabtized and he had us all take a turn commenting on the guys personal problems and if they had been resolved.

So basically no from what I've seen. Confidentially may exist but I've seen a lot of cases where it does not.


Seneca
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
When I came out of the non-believing closet I assumed the bishop would tell his counselors and the PEC. Shortly thereafter my family and I started getting plenty of personal invites to church, RS meetings, basketball, etc. The member of the HC who is in my ward and also my dentist magically made my dental bills (which were substantial) disappear. He had never done anything like this in the past and made it clear before the gift that our church relationship had no bearing on his dental practice. I also got an invite to discuss my concerns with the Stake President with whom I had never before spoken. I'm glad my expectations were that the Bishop would tell everyone otherwise I would have been very disappointed.
Utahorbust
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
I'm not Catholic, but I do believe that what Catholics divulge to their Priest is actually held confidential. I think most real clergy do a better job keeping private things private.
VultureTamer
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
I could tell you stories. But have realized that I've probably already shared too many specific details, and don't want to see printouts of what I've posted here, floating around on the back of the RS weekly bulletin.

So suffice it to say, that even the most careful and trusted of bishops, has faltered a time or two, in my own personal experience. Human nature, people. I can't imagine the burden to have to keep everyone's garbage so close to the vest that the *only* person you are allowed to counsel with is Jesus? Wow. I imagine that to be a very one-way conversation.

I'd at least have to call my Mom. (I guess that's why women are weak & never would be allowed to have the P-hood, because we talk too much, right?)


Cheryl
His wife said these problems kept him awake at night? That indicates she knew what was keeping him awake.
How did she know?

Because he told her.


guynoirprivateeye
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
this begs a wider question:

What are the 'rules of engagement' between a member & leadership?

A. Anything that leadership wants them to be, Silly Rabbit!


summer
I was raised Catholic, and that's true.
The priests also officially don't know who is making the confession because there is a screen between the priest and the member that reduces the view to a silhouette. Unofficially they may recognize your voice. But they will never divulge what you say to them.

Catholics also have the option of making their confession at a RC church where the priest doesn't know them at all.


cludgie
If you were to tell your bishop that you have a "worthiness" problem...
...he very possibly might say right in "priesthood executive committee" meeting on Sunday morning, Utahorbust has a problem with worthiness. You should remember him in your prayers." So now your problem has been multiplied by the number of people present (usually about six). If that weren't bad enough, they bring you up again in ward welfare meeting, so then some 12-15 people get to hear you have a worthiness problem.
newfreedom
Re: Is what you tell your bishop really private?
Nope. I remember when I first came back to church, the first few months I talked a lot to the bishop because of struggles I was facing. A few times when he spoke in sacrament meeting, I noticed his topics were related to what I told him. Of course he didn't use my name but I was still upset. That kept me from talking to him again about anything personal, including tithing settlement.

"Recovery from Mormonism - www.exmormon.org"