Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit


Ironic isnt it?

I was one of the golden boys.

Did everything 'right', gave all the 'right' answers, made all the 'right' decisions.

Of course, all 'right' really means, is exhibiting the Mormon approved behavior.

As a result, I was properly rewarded.

I gradually climbed the Leadership Ladder.

EQ Presidency, High Council, Bishopric, Stake Presidency.

With each step, I became more and more disillusioned.

I discovered that 'Priesthood Power' & Inspired Leadership' was a load of garbage.

We werent any more or less inspired then a stone. We were all just sitting there in our meetings, throwing names out on a dry erase board to fill callings. Almost always recycling the same people, or putting in people who were obvious, natural fits.

I sat on high councils with some men who were the most vile people I have known. Men who I knew treated their wives like garbage. People were flat out pompous jerks. Guys who had certain skeltons in their closet (Porn).

I eventually figured that if God was inspired to call guys like this to lead, then something is wrong with the chain of communication.

Of course, I was led to conclude that it was nothing but a top-down organizational structure, created by Joseph himself.

After that, leaving was pretty much academic.

Anyone else have similar experiences?

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
Skeleton porn? I have a hard time believing anyone would be interested in that...

Yes, I had somewhat of a similar experience. Being in leadership positions and watching others in leaderships positions made it obvious to me that it was just people without any real inspiration. The clear lack of inspiration is extending callings was one example.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
Well, since i'm female, and there was no ladder to climb......

However, I love hearing stories from people who have been in your position. They are so validating to my experiences. The last time I dealt with men in leadership at church, it was a classic case of emotional abuse by a bus load of narcissists.

I'm female, so I can't have the callings you had
but I was very TBM--my parents' golden child--I was probably the most devout of their entire extended family at one time.

One of the things that bothered me is who got called to higher callings--and one was a relative who became a stake president. Still blows my mind that he was ever a stake president. And the thing that really blew my mind was finding out he was terrified to die--TERRIFIED. If you really know--why would you be terrified to die?

I left the lds church before one of my friend's husbands got called as a bishop. I've known him for 40 or so years--and I told my mother that if I hadn't already left the church, that would do it. It has always disturbed me who got called as leaders--from a very young age.

Yep, that's me
While I haven't officially left yet, I am pretty well on the way to checking out, and so is the rest of my immediate family, some friends, and extended family. Why...because the more you see behind the curtain, the more you realize that it is just the wizard pulling some levers...there is no's all just pretend.

Executive Secretary
EQ President
Stake YM's

BC, too funny! Hahahahaha

Did you expect something else?
Folks are folks.

Re: Did you expect something else?
Yes, I DID expect something else.

Since they are the ones who claim to be speaking and acting in Gods name, I don't think its unreasonable to expect higher standards from them.

At the very least I expected them to be respectful and honest. I didn't even get that.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
Exactly. Mia nailed it.
Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
More surprising is that so many in high places DON'T seem to see anything wrong.

One suspects all the ones with functional personalities are leaving, and only the oddballs are left.

It's the same thing with presidential candidates. No sane person would want the job.

Congrats on being one of the astute.

I firmly feel that if I had just been left to play the organ or accompany the choir, with some lowly teaching job thrown in now and then, I would still be toeing the line as a clueless TBM. I feel stupid and embarassed now, looking back, but I really truly believed that the church was directed by God and that when I was given a calling or asked to speak in church it was because Jesus whispered it in the bishop's ear. Yeah, I feel stupid about it, but I guess that's what brainwashing can do.

Anyway, after being in a couple bishoprics and a high council it was pretty obvious TSCC is run by just a bunch of guys PRETENDING that Jesus is whispering in their ears. Zero divine inspiration. So obvious.

Combine sitting in those high council meetings trying to ignore my brain screaming, "This is all a sham," with stumbling upon various websites while trying to prepare those dang high council talks every month. It was the perfect combination for me... The lights all came on and the show was over.

Reminds me of when we were kids......
... and we had our club in the treehouse. Lots of games and drama about who got to be the leader, and all our cool magic powers we gave ourselves. And of course, girls didn't get to come up and be part of our club. It's just a bigger version of our old childish games.
And I too became more and more disillusioned with the lack of inspiration as I spent more and more time in leadership. Some absolute sickos were often called as bishops and young men's leaders. I'm amazed my kids turned out as well as they have. If this was God's church, shouldn't the people who lead at least be kind of cream of the crop. But often they were not even close.
Exec. Sec.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
anonski21 Wrote:

Being in the bishopric was, for me, like watching the sausage being made. Or like lifting the curtain on the wizard of Oz. Once you know how it works, it just isn't quite as exciting as it was when you thought it was magic.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
When I was elders quorum president, I prayed over every calling and decision. When I became executive secretary, I was shocked that the bishop would just throw out a name in bishopric meeting, and if everyone agreed, he'd make the call.

At the time, I thought, well, he's just not taking his calling seriously. Now I look back on it and realize he had just as much inspiration as I did.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
Working in a bishopric was a real eye opener for me. Meetings would be focused in using logic to work out which members would best fit which callings. Things I learnt:

* 'The Lord' only ever seemed interested in calling the prominent, reliable members to the key callings. I never saw someone outside the core called to a position.
* using common sense I was able to suggest half the callings and influence the bishop to agree with me
* there was never inidividual prayers for each dingle calling, only one prayer at the end of the meeting where a whole bunch of names would be rattled off in quick succession
* we'd all need to kneel for this prayer as if it was extra special. At the end the bishopric would pause for the obligatory 3 seconds as if they are receiving a revelation - they'd then look at each other, nod and say that this feels right
* I never once in 3 years saw anyone receive a revelation that YE logical calling choice was the wrong one after they prayed
* there were numerous occasions where people flatly turned down callings, mentioned that they were moving out of the ward or even stopped coming because they hated their calling
* The general members really have no idea how these things actually work.... and for the sake of the Bishop, it's a good job they don't either.

bishop who didn't know the " rules"
C12, I had a bishop that confided to me that since his father hadn't come back ( from the dead) to tell him the " rules" that he was terrified to die also...

Swear to God....

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
Oh gawd,

You just gave me flashbacks to when I was EQ secretary and the EQP would pause to have a revelation for every single home teaching companionship and family assigned. Every. single. one. More than once I would suggest something that made sense and he would have a revelation otherwise - it was amazing how many companionship he had revealed to him to put together that never went once.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
Wish I was in your wards - TBM DH in bishopric believes they are truly inspired. Now, the bishopric are all nice guys, so that affirms his beliefs.

Ofttimes, those in positions of leadership in the morg tend to be arrogant, judgmental, uncaring, selfish, egocentric, etc.

Of course this is a generalization, but it seems like those in leadership positions in the morg skew heavily towards the NPD spectrum.

So no, folks aren't just folks. Some folks are bigger arses than other folks.

Searching Truth
Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
I can relate to what everyone else has said...among others, my callings were: Exec Secretary (3 times, 3 different wards/Bishops); EQP; Bishopric (2 different times); and finally on the HC for 2-3 years.

I was always a good example of a "sheeple," so I didn't let anything ruffle me, such as random callings, talks, etc, but looking back, I can now recognize some "WTF?" moments.

Once, as Exec Secretary, we had a disciplinary council (my 3rd one with this Bishop), and we had a brand-new Bishopric member who had never been a part of one before. The couple we were discplining were married now, but before marriage, had had sex. The guy in this couple was an RM, so he had been through the temple.

As we prayed and discussed, the Bishop said he was leaning toward formal probation, or possibly disfellowshipment. This poor new guy definitely had a WTF? look on his face, and he finally said, "I thought that was pretty much automatic excommunication." I knew from past DC that this Bishop definitely went light on people, so it wasn't a surprise to me, but now looking back, there was no inspiration there, just the personality of this Bishop, who tended to be more soft.

I know other Bishops/SP who would ex someone in a heartbeat for doing that.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
This is a tangent, but I would think that marrying the person that you had sex with would be the most appropriate pennance.
Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
the HC and serving on two bishoprics did it for me. Once I realized that the stake is run just like a business and nobody is called by inspiration, only by desperation did I realize that much of what the church claims is false. I would go back if the church was honest and said that they are not the only true church and that they receive direct revelation from God.

When our new stake president was called, we were all interviewed by some GA's, on a Saturday so that they could "call" the new stake presidency the next morning for a special stake conference. Funny thing was, those of us "chosen" for the interviews, (bishops, HC members, and a select other few) were all asked to write down our top 3 names for the new stake president. After the 5 minute interview of each of us, they polled the results and wouldn't you know it, the most popular choice among us all, along with the fact he was the counselor people actually liked, was "miraculously" called that same night. I still remember going home to my wife and telling her who I voted for and letting her know who most of the other HC voted for. By this alone I nailed the new stake president and his first counselor just off my simple straw poll of the HC that Saturday. Damn, come to think of it, I should be a GA, prepped for it all my life, walked the line until recently. Maybe I should get back into it just to climb the latter and be the first GA over the pulpit at conference to denounce my faith???

Gordon Guymon
Skull fetchin 

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
I am a woman. Reading your post makes me think of the times I was able to guess our next leader. Don't ask me how but I guess I have an eye for the good mormon men. lol

I had converted to the church a few years. A new SP was to be called, I looked at the second counselor in the SPcy and I knew he was the one. Zas, he was called.

Anothe time, I was at a meeting where our bishop was released. I though brother X will be called. Zas, he was called.

Even in the last ward I attended, the bishop had been serving for many years and there were always rumours of a new bishop but nothing was happening. Finally, a new family moved to our ward and I thought, if they are changing the bishop he'd probably be the most qualify to be called. And guess what, he was called.

Three guesses, not bad for this second class female sister. Of course there were other times I had no clue, but we're supposed to only remember the times that we did know. =)

Brother Of Jerry
I have no idea why at least half of the leaders
I picked the most recent bishop
My TBM daughter was here talking about the new bishop being called that week and I said, "It will be _____." He is a good friend of the family--and not "typical" bastard bishop material--one of her childhood friend's dads. She told him after the meeting that I had called it--and he said, "I'm not going to let her live this down." But he is the one I resigned with. He's been great. He leaves me alone.

I just think it was rather interesting that I picked the bishop and she couldn't.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
Yeah, I was in all the leadership callings a woman can hold and working with the male leadership really opened my eyes to how things were done. The killer though, was when they called my ex to be the bishop. *I* KNEW what kind of a guy he was (not a nice one), and that he shouldn't have even been considered for the position.
Turkey Vulture
Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
former EqP and 1st and 2nd councilor many times...what zip code you lived in was our Holy Ghost otherwise we still would be sitting there waiting on inspiration on who gets what HT assignment

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
We left right before my hubby was called into one of the big callings. He was being groomed into a bishop calling. We dodged that bullet.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
Some of my best friends left TSCC because they have (1) served in really high leadership positions, or (2) worked for TSCC.

All of them left for similar reasons: people and leaders of TSCC can be very, very hypocritical, and they are no more inspired than devout Christians or believers of other faiths.

It was years after my friends left that I came to realize and truly experience what they said to me before their departure from TSCC.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
As a new convert, I guess I was lucky and not as I had befriended a brother who was/is an exceptional man. He treated his wife the way I treat mine and how I believe all should treat their spouses/SOs - as equal partners with love and respect. I haven't met many men like this, so I was impressed and thought the men of the LDS church must all be like him. Part of why I became interested. And I was impressed with how hard the Relief Society women worked as my wife was very involved with the projects and activities.

Prior to this, I had surrounded myself with only women and a few gay men. I loved my Mom and hated how she was treated by her chauvinist husbands. I swore never to treat a woman the way she got treated.

It was dismaying to find out I was wrong about the church in this aspect. I also didn't understand gender separatism as I've always enjoyed the friendships of women, (and still have many of those friendships). I felt weird that my wife's friends were so standoffish of me, but yes she would tell me they spoke well of me to her.

Given my difference of attitude, I don't know why the church was trying so hard to push me up the ladder then. I see why I got such a sarcastic comment from a EQ leader when I praised the Relief Society.

How awful for the LDS women!

But I'm so happy we're out! Now if I can yank all the nice people I've met out with us...

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
One of my friends was called to be bishop about 2 years ago. He's one of the nicest, most reasonable men I know. Even though I had been inactive for several months already, I went to church the day he was called/sustained in Sacrament Meeting. He did not look thrilled to have the job, but he was raised to believe that one does not say NO to any calling. Everyone else shook his hand in congratulations. I looked him in the eye and said, "I'm really sorry for you."
Yes, its a miracle more leaders don't make the exit when they are done. I'm never surprised to see former bishops post here.
Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
Same thing happened in our ward too. He'd ask our opinions on names. Rarely did someone churp up a name who was less active for major callings, ie RS President.

Peter Bowen
Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
"Combine sitting in those high council meetings trying to ignore my brain screaming, "This is all a sham," with stumbling upon various websites while trying to prepare those dang high council talks every month. It was the perfect combination for me... The lights all came on and the show was over."

Are you me? This is exactly how I felt.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
Don't kid yourself, there is a female ladder. TBM wife is a climber and a good one at that...skilled at inhouse politics.
Ward RS pres., Counselor, Stake RS Pres., Stake YW Pres. it's her life!!! The more "important" the position, the better!!!
Always chuckled when she would refer to..."my presidency".

Stray Mutt
I left before I could climb the ladder, but...
...seeing my mission president in action, and what an ass a visiting GA was, it shook my belief in the concept of divinely selected leadership.
Re: Absolutely!
OMG that is exactly how I feel!!

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
Its so true about climbing the ladder! I remember going in to the MTC and having to bear testimony to our distrcit president(old guy). I knew that if I could conjure a tear up while bearing my testimony that I would be asked to become the district leader. The plan was executed to perfection, and sure enough I was appointed as the district leader. I felt kind of bad at the time, but it really got me thinking about the whole "mantle of leadership" crap.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
And always the unrecognized highest position for women... The busybody who knows all the dirt on everybody. Arguably a higher position than stake women's something-or-other president. If you have enough connections in a small enough mo population, you can know all the mormon gossip in the state! THAT'S the top of the ladder for women!

Re: Wait...
My husband was commenting last night how it's so funny in the church when people are talking about others they'll say ya my dad the Bishop of blah blah ward, or my uncle the sp of blah blah stake but you never hear anyone say ya my brother primary teacher at blah blah ward or ya my sister nursery leader at blah blah ward.

It's definitely more than a calling it's a title

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
Some time before my actual departure, a very dear frined mine who had previously served in the bishopric of our ward told me a horryfing story.

The stake presidnet's son was about to get married in the temple and currently resided in our ward. Not long before the son's interview for temple recommend, the bishop got a phone call from the stake president. The stake presidnet basically said that his son "must" past the interview beacuse he really, really wanted him to marry in the temple. The bishop asked my friend what to do because the stake president's son was obviously not temple-ready and not temple-worthy. My friend strongly advised against the stake president's demand and was released not long after that conversation.

In the end, the stake president's son passed the interview.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
I remember being the RS Pres, and the bishop asked me who I suggested for this or that calling...not pertaining to RS; he usually made those choices for me. But he did ask me about who should be the SS teacher, the YW pres, etc. Next thing I knew, that person was always called, and he always mentioned as they were sustained how the calling had been "particularly inspired."


Nay, it is a Mantle!

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
The callings are made to people who possess a certain set of qualities...YM leaders, guys who like to play with the kids, and usually younger, YW leaders, gals who are role models for the girls, bishops guys who have upward income and status potential so they can be promotable beyond bishop, etc.

IF JUST ONCE, a calling came to the unexpected person, maybe I would have been "impressed", but it NEVER happens, or so rarely that it is a random occurance explainable by other means.

Re: Being In Leadership Eventually Led To My Exit
This conversation really has me wondering about our Bishop. TBM DH was talking to him about me and he didn't seem to care at all that I had left the church. He just told him to let me do my thing. But, on top of that, we have it on good authority that he drinks coffee* and last year at tithing settlement(I very recently left the church) we were not full tithe payers and were just trying to get back on track the last few months of the year and he told us that was good enough and marked us as full. I love this bishop! It wouldn't surprise me at all if he's NOM and just staying in his position to save face. He's a pretty recent convert too, so maybe he got into this leadership and all of a sudden realized that there's no magical power to lead him in this high position.
*Not that I judged him on that when I was TBM, just using this as an example to show that he's not your typical super righteous Bishop.
Re: where do you think...
the term "boner" came from?

"Recovery from Mormonism -"