Monday, February 23, 2015

RECENTLY ENGAGED AREA MAN DISCOVERS WHOLE NEW WORLD OF CHURCH MEETINGS

Map of Nearly 2 hour Drive Probert will be Asked to Take
for a Devotional with an Apostle
Hattiesburg, MS—Since getting engaged to Melissa Stevenson, area man Michael Probert has discovered a whole new world of LDS church meetings. Probert, who joined the church at the end of his senior year at Mississippi State, did not serve a mission, and in the 5 years since becoming a member had only really been exposed to the 3 hour block of Sunday meetings.

“I’ve been the second counsellor in my ward’s Sunday School Presidency for over two years,” said Probert, “but it has only been since I got engaged that I have learned that there are two hour Stake Auxiliary Training meetings every six months.” Auxiliary Training meeting is not the only church get together that is new for Probert.  “Oh, yah, last month Melissa had us go to the Saturday evening adult session of Stake Conference, so, yah, that was another new meeting.” 

Probert, who previously found the 3 hour Sunday block “rather longish” compared with the Methodist church he attended as a youth, recently “discussed” his ever-expanding schedule of church meetings with his lovely fiancĂ©e. For her part, Stevenson expressed the joy she felt seeing her parents attend their various church meetings “several times each month beyond just Sundays.” While cherishing his lovely “bride-to-be’s experiences,” Probert expressed his desire to use each “entire Saturday” to prepare for Sunday. Both agreed to “table the issue for now” and make out.

Though Probert is very, very happy with Stevenson, he still does not realize that in 4 months he will be asked to drive 2 hours each way to Mobile, Alabama on a Wednesday evening for a special 2 hour devotional with Elder Holland nor does he yet know that, come April, there are Saturday sessions of General Conference he’ll be asked to watch with Stevenson. 

Saturday, February 14, 2015

2015 CHURCH LEADER VALENTINES

As we have done for years, okay two years, here are the Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer's Church Leader Valentines: (oh, and these are the Valentines from last year and the year before)











Monday, February 9, 2015

RECENTLY RETURNED MISSIONARY’S ONLY EXPERIENCE OF ACCEPTANCE, COMPASSION COMES FROM SPANISH BRANCH

Unofficial Spanish Branch Clock
Rochester, NY—Since returning from his mission to La Paz, Bolivia, Elder James Maywood’s only lasting experiences of acceptance and compassion have come at the South Rochester Spanish branch.

“Of course I loved coming home,” said Maywood, “but it seems like I had hardly unpacked before my dad started getting on me about getting a job and mom started to talk about grandkids.” As the third of four children, Maywood is the only to serve a mission, and, according to his mother, her “only chance of holding a sweet, precious little grandbaby any time soon.”

Pressure from home has not been Maywood’s only stressor. As he puts it, “when I tried to go to a Young Single Adult activity, everyone just seemed so judgmental and so into music and movies that I don’t have a clue about, that, you know, I just felt out-of-place and like I can’t compete!”  Maywood noted that so many young women seemed unimpressed if not disappointed in him.

These experiences stand in the starkest contrast with the acceptance and compassion he has felt in the Spanish branch. “So the Branch President asked me to speak in church,” explained Maywood, “and after the talk everyone wanted to talk with me and told me how much they liked what I said.” Maywood added that “of course several older sisters gave me the warmest hugs, and one even said that I reminded her of the elders who had baptized her.”

It wasn’t just by way of his talk in church that Maywood has felt an outpouring of love from branch members. Maywood elaborated that “when I stopped by for a home teaching visit I just felt like a member of the family, but a family that isn’t harassing me all of the time.” Maywood also said that he thoroughly enjoys joking with ward members about differences in Spanish pronunciation and vocabulary in members from different places. As he puts it, “joking with Brother Morales about how Cubans sound like they have a potato in their mouths or how Chileans must be allergic to the letter ‘s’ is actually really fun for all of us.” Maywood added that “they love to tease me about my Bolivian accent and words, and how I sound like a ‘Bolivian gringo’.” 

Maywood believes that branch members offer so much seemingly unqualified love and acceptance in part because he took time to serve Spanish-speaking saints and to learn their language and customs. Maywood also noted that, “oh, and I think that we all feel a certain bond of affection and acceptance when we all arrive about 15 minutes late for everything!” 

Monday, February 2, 2015

TOP 10 REJECTED ESPECIALLY FOR YOUTH CLASSES

It is that time of year when families are signing their kids up to pick pineapple in Hawaii, planning visits to see their children in state and federal correctional facilities, or registering them for Especially for Youth. The Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer is happy to present the top 10 rejected EFY classes. Enjoy!


Friday, January 30, 2015

DELBERT L. STAPLEY SENDS DIRE WARNING TO MITT ROMNEY

Apostle Still Seeking to do the Lord's
Work from the Spirit World
By Adam Lewis

La Jolla, CA—Confusion has, for some, followed Romney’s announcement that he would not run for president. Information from a source inside the Romney campaign may clarify why he is not running. This highly-placed source indicates that while organizing the papers on the desk of the savior of the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics, our source came upon an interesting letter, a letter that was “buried beneath stacks of diamond mine deeds and drafts of campaign donation requests.” The letter in question was from the late Delbert L. Stapley (Apostle 1950-1978), and its odd writings and other marks indicated that Romney may have transcribed the letter via what he refers to as his “Urim and Thumim 2.0” (aka top hat and monocle).

Stapley’s letter seems to be a sequel to his infamous 1964 letter to Governor George Romney, a letter wherein the now deceased Apostle criticized Romney’s support for the Civil Rights Act. In that letter Stapley warned Romney the Elder that support for such an act was against the will of the Lord as revealed through Joseph Smith. Stapley further cautioned that punishments are in store for those who seek equality in such ways. As evidence for such dire warnings, Stapley cited three US presidents who met their doom as a direct result of their pursuit of equal rights under the law as well as “the drowning death of some guy from Arizona.” 

Our highly-placed source suggests that the new Stapley letter is adapted for the new generation with similar advice and warnings. Stapley points out that the slippery slope of the Civil Rights Act has produced new minority groups that now have a voice and are seeking equal protection under the law. He goes on the say that groups like homosexuals, feminists, and Mormon democrats are pushing an agenda that restructures the proven and well established world that “needs no restructuring.” The source indicated that there may have been more, but the letter was whisked away by a representative of the Church History department who said that it needed to be “archived” properly.

When pressed for further details, our source noted the letter’s 116 word postscript. In that postscript, Stapley made clear his view that support for equal rights was why Romney the Elder lost the 1968 election, “plunging the nation into the dark ages of Nixon.” Stapley made clear that Romney the Younger has a third chance to “get it right” so the “purposes of Zion can be realized in national leadership.” Mitt was promised a win if he would adhere to Stapley’s directive, but any wavering would cause the dashing, righteous, and well-coiffed former governor to fall short, allowing Satan and the national media to yet again “sift him as wheat.”

Monday, January 26, 2015

TRIPLE, VENTI, HALF SWEET, NON-FAT, CARAMEL MACCHIATO CAUSES PRODIGAL LDS STARBUCKS BARISTA TO “COME TO HIMSELF,” RETURN TO FAITH

God can even use the absurdity 
of an iced, half caff, ristretto, venti, 
4-pump, sugar free, cinnamon, dolce 
soy skinny latte to bring a lost sheep 
back to the fold
Salt Lake City, UT—Kody Hollis’ recent return to the faith of his youth was apparently triggered by a customer request made while Kody was working as a barista at a Salt Lake City Starbucks.

“Yah, so this guy comes in,” recounted Kody, “and orders a triple, venti, half sweet, non-fat, caramel macchiato and it suddenly struck me; what the @#^& am I doing here.” Kody continued that “the absurdity of making this ridiculous drink for some pretentious University of Utah hipster and then making similar drinks for the line of equally pretentious hipsters behind him just made me snap out of whatever fog I’d been in.”

Kody’s experience of suddenly “coming to himself” was followed by other experiences that eventually led the twenty-five year-old to return to his parents and the church he was raised in.

“So I went back to my apartment, you know, after my shift, and looked in the mirror, saw the piercings and those ludicrous gauges, and decided that I really need to make a change.” Kody was going to discuss his decision with his roommates, but Brian was in the shower with his girlfriend Candice and Kameron was passed out with a bong beside him on their dilapidated, red, Deseret Industries sectional couch. 

Kody’s decision was not an easy one, and he nearly faltered on the drive back to his parents’ home in Wellsville, Utah. “I got off the freeway,” explained Kody, “and dropped into a Starbucks along the way, in Ogden I think, you know, to pick up something and to think about this [decision] before just going back to Cache Valley.” Kody concluded that “well, so this girl with a weed tattoo on her neck was in front of me in line, and she ordered a grande chai tea latte, 3 pump, skim milk, lite water, no foam, extra hot and I was like ‘I gotta get away from this $%^*!’”

Monday, January 19, 2015

INSTITUTE STUDENTS, CONCERNED ABOUT HIS WEAK FAITH, CAUTION INSTRUCTOR AGAINST ASKING HARD QUESTIONS, GOING ON INTERNET

Students don't believe their teacher 
could handle a crucible or a doubt
Phoenix, AZ—Students attending the local Institute class, concerned about his weak testimony, consistently try to dissuade their teacher, Brother Branden Nicks, from asking difficult questions or going on the Internet.

“Let’s just say we try to keep him in the manual,” said Melissa Carr, a returned missionary, Sociology major at Arizona State University, and student in Brother Nicks’ class. “We love brother Nicks, and we worry that if he started to wonder about why God didn’t give the Priesthood to every worthy man before 1978 (or to every worthy member now!), well, it could damage his struggling faith.”

When asked about why they believed that challenging issues might be difficult for their instructor, students mentioned many telling experiences.

“At the beginning of the year we get new students who think that Institute should be a college-level class with open discussions that engage the difficult but fruitful tensions between faith and doubt, especially at this particular time in one’s life and at a university setting” said Michael Lane. Lane continued that “clearly Nicks is so uncomfortable with whatever isn’t in the manual or said in General Conference that he shuts any challenging conversations down with an apostle quote, a stern warning to ‘follow the Brethren,’ and a standard plea for everyone to ‘stay in the boat.’ Everyone pretty quickly gets the message,” concluded Lane, “that Brother Nicks is so afraid of whatever isn’t easy or clearly sanctioned that it must be eliminated immediately.”

Students also report that Brother Nicks’ fear of difficult issues can emerge at any time. Melissa Carr, a first year student from Scottsdale, recalled that one class, while talking about the woman caught in adultery, a visitor asked Brother Nicks how he resolved the fact that the story does not appear in the earliest Bible manuscripts nor is it mentioned by early Christian writers who had access to even earlier manuscripts than we have. Carr said that “we all looked on in stunned surprise, worried because Brother Nicks had no idea about Biblical scholarship or manuscripts.” She said that, “we were afraid that this could lead to a faith-destroying crisis for a man who clearly could not think outside the manual, when suddenly, like a miracle, Daniel Dexter just started to laugh, and then we all laughed, and in doing so we finally convinced Brother Nicks that we were pulling a prank on him. Let me just say,” said Carr, “we could have lost our weak-testimonied teacher forever right there!”

Dexter, Carr, Lane, and others all mentioned that they and other class members often meet during the week or chat online to discuss their readings of books like Rough Stone Rolling, The Crucible of Doubt, or issues of Dialogue. Such discussions give them a way to share ideas and encourage one another as they learn to develop a deeper faith while honoring and using concerns, doubts, and new knowledge to strengthen that faith.

When asked what they get out of Institute, Carr said “we mostly just go to socialize, oh, and sometimes there’s pizza.”

Monday, January 12, 2015

“CHERIBUM AND A GLOWING LIGHTSABER”—RECENTLY RETURNED MISSIONARY LIVENS UP PRIMARY CLASS

Chula Vista, CA—Recently returned missionary Elder Arnold Cunningham has become very popular with his Valiant 11 class, particularly with his knack for livening up lessons.

“It made a lot more sense to me,” said Micha Osborne, “when he explained that the angel had a glowing lightsaber to keep Adam and Eve from sneaking back into the garden.” Added Osborne, “oh and when he said that Adam and Eve leaving the garden was like when Obi-Wan Kenobi died, and how it was bad at the time but it ended up being for good—that explained it all.”

Comparisons with Star Wars are not the only ways that Arnold has made the gospel easier to understand. One Sunday the class used Cunningham’s Minecraft account and a projector to build the boats used by Noah, the Brother of Jared, and Nephi as well as Solomon’s temple and Jonah’s hut outside of Nineveh. He also promised his class that if they “sang out” during the Primary program then as a class they could “build the entire Salt Lake Temple out of diamond ore.”

Not all of the teachers seem as excited as the kids are about how Arnold is getting the children interested in each lesson. Said one teacher, “well, I’m just not sure if the debate between Jesus and the Pharisees should be reenacted with Yugioh cards or whatever he was doing. It just seemed odd to me,” continued that teacher, “that when Jesus wrote in the sand that was Him played His ‘trap card.’”

Sister Natalie Belmont, Primary President of the Chula Vista Second Ward, said that she is glad that students seem to be learning. “I admit that some of what he says seems a little strange,” said Belmont, “but I can tell you that he was very, very sincere when he told his class that because of Christ everyone, no matter if they were good or bad, would one day respawn.”

Monday, January 5, 2015

NEW MTE SPONSOR: SONS OF SAMUEL HELPS SEMINARY PRESIDENTS, RMS, BYU ROOMMATES

Salt Lake City, UT—The Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer is proud to announce a new corporate sponsor, The Sons of Samuel.

The Sons of Samuel dedicates itself to helping people overcome their judgmental and self-righteous tendencies. Where other groups might help other sinful young men, this group uses a “Knights of Faith” approach to help and encourage seminary presidents, recently returned and still struggling missionaries, and BYU (any campus) roommates fight against the demon that assails them.

Led by people who have become comfortable with ambiguity, some of whom have seen Schindler’s List and other non-disqualifying R-rated movies, they practice completely unfamiliar tolerance and compassionate habits to conquer the tendency to use their own perceived righteousness as the standard by which they judge others.

Participants learn strategies that the adversary will use against them like believing that absolute obedience to every rule can legitimately replace faith, mercy, or empathy. This program is ideal for helping young people prepare to interact with actual flawed children of God.

The program has a long, successful record of working with the most self-righteous saints. As one graduate put it, “For too long Satan held dominion over my life, and I mistook his influence for God. I could so clearly see the sinfulness of those around me, with their tattoos, sexual jokes, coffee, and colored shirts to pass the sacrament. I felt that I was really the only one going to the Celestial Kingdom, and figured I’d be killed on the streets of Jerusalem once I got called on my mission. The Sons of Samuel program taught me that God didn’t really care about how many commandments I obeyed if that obedience disconnected me from those around me.  My judgment trumped my compassion, but now I’m learning to see, as God does, on the heart, not on the Starbuck’s cup.”

The Sons of Samuel is the Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer’s most recent corporate sponsor. Zion’s finest news source considered sponsorship from other groups, including the Sons of Abinadi (a program that works with those who struggle with pyromania) and the Sons of Samuel the Lamanite (a program that works with those who struggle with doing missionary work by shouting from walls and (too often erroneously) believe they are invincible), but those negotiations fell through. 

Other sponsors include The Straight and Narrow HealthGroup of Mapleton Utah, Deseret Book, and BYU's Football/Mixed Martial Arts/Fight Club program.

Monday, December 29, 2014

NORTH KOREAN HACKERS FORCE CHURCH TO CANCEL RELEASE OF “JOHNNY LINGO” SEQUEL

Salt Lake City, UT—Devastated by the recent cyber-attacks, the release of sensitive church documents, and threat of terrorist violence, the Church has decided to cancel the highly anticipated release of Johnny Lingo II: Johnny and Mahana’s Son Baptizes, Marries Kim Jong-un’s Favorite Daughter.

“It has been a difficult two weeks at Church headquarters,” said one unnamed source.  That source explained that “we thought it was bad enough when hackers released President Monson’s confidential email complaints that ‘some of those 85 widows could be pretty cranky’ and that he ‘would be shocked if a few could claw their way into the terrestrial kingdom.’”

Hackers have also taken advantage of their unfettered access to church computers to release confidential church plans. Those previously confidential plans include the move to a 2 hour Sunday meeting block, plans to team up with Victoria’s Secret to redesign women’s garments, and plans to eliminate “the church’s main source of priestcraft—the Church Education System.” Also released was President Oaks’ April 2024 General Conference talk explaining why the Lord lifted the Priesthood ban on all worthy members.

Sources indicate that it was various threats that forced the church to pull Johnny Lingo II. “The movie is meant to be both funny and a way to reach out to North Korea” said another unnamed source, “but apparently Brother Un saw it as what we would call ‘loud laughter.’” The North Koreans threatened to “poison your funeral potatoes,” to “assign the weirdest ward members to be your home teachers,” and to “convince Mitt to run again” if the movie was distributed as planned. 

The main complaints seem to be that the movie depicts a chipper, moderately attractive Polynesian Mormon trying, in the words of the North Koreans, “first to waterboard the Supreme Leader’s daughter” and then to “make her his Eternal Companion in a ceremony that the Protector of the People could not attend.” 

Editorial Note: The Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer, always a deeply affectionate lover of the peace and joy and freedom and limitless food for everyone that the Supreme Highest Super-Dee-Dooper Leader has brought to his happy land while all of other suffers from the greedy capitalist pigs would just like to say please do not hack us. Remember, we said it first—Un is SOME Great Guy!”

Monday, December 22, 2014

CHURCH USES “U2 STRATEGY”—LOADS TRANSLATION OF SEALED PORTION OF BOOK OF MORMON ONTO EVERY APPLE DEVICE

By Clyde Ward
U2 may be influencing General Authority Eyewear as Well


Salt Lake City, UT—The Church has used what marketing experts now call the “U2 Strategy,” loading a brand new translation of the previously unreleased sealed portion of the Book of Mormon onto every Apple electronic device in the world.

“We had this newly revealed translation,” said Church spokesperson Daniela Burns, “and, as a gift to everyone, we wanted to make it immediately available everywhere.” Burns continued that the result has been that “unfortunately people are focused on how it got there instead of actually reading the book.”

Indeed, even within Church headquarters there was reportedly substantial debate about what to do with the translation. Unnamed sources told the Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer that some wanted to release it during the April 2015 General Conference. Others suggested that it be given first to Mormons with too much time on their hands and/or who complain about the Church a lot by posting it on the Bloggernacle. Ultimately the decision was made to employ “the U2 Stretegy.”

The strategy has not been free of controversy. Unnamed Church insiders note that, like the U2 album, many have been perplexed as to how it got there and how to get rid of it. “Let’s face it,” said one internal email, “finding that U2 album on your device and then trying to get rid of it is like a herpes outbreak! And that is not a good association for the Church!”

Other Church leaders voiced similar complaints. Said another internal message in part, “U2’s Songs of Innocence is a desperate ploy by a group that peaked at Joshua Tree or Unforgettable Fire, and while we can live with Auchtung Baby, every [redacted] song after that should be on one album called Unforgivable Fiasco.” Such internal communication not only reveals the level of disagreement about the policy but a preponderance of painfully strained wordplay in the Church’s upper echelons.

To combat the Mormon Church’s recent proselyting moves, Pope Francis announced that the Catholic Church will be loading the recently discovered Revelations of Saint Peter on all Android devices. Early reports indicate that this collection of revelations includes an account of “who shot JFK, what happened to Malaysian flight 115, and how The Walking Dead will end.”

Southern Baptists are scrambling to reply to the technological-theological contest, but so far all they have are John Spilsbury’s previously unknown 1638 prophesy about “a toothless panther, a flightless eagle, an unholy saint, and a unarmed pirate” competing for a prize they don’t deserve, clearly foreseeing the National Football League’s 2014 NFC South.

Monday, December 15, 2014

CHURCH ANNOUNCES “APOSTLEMINGLE” DATING WEBSITE

Salt Lake City, UT—Over the weekend the church announced a new dating website that will allow church members and those of the Quorum of the Twelve the opportunity to take “one more chance on love.” As some apostles and other church leaders are now, sadly, bereft of their eternal companions, ApostleMingle offers members the possibility that, as the tagline says, “You can be his second perfect match.”

“We are very excited about the prospect of helping great church leaders use the social media tools that the Lord has provided in these latter days to make a love connection,” said Church spokesman Michael Otterson. When reporters noted that currently the website could only feature Elder Scott’s profile, Otterson said that “‘apostle’ should be understood in a broader sense,” with Otterson adding that “it will include those who easily could be Apostles, such as Seventys.”  He went on to explain that “over time we will even expand the pool to include some righteous and dignified stake presidents, you know, if the supply does not meet the demand.”

Members who have been able to see an early version of the website expressed their enthusiasm for the project. One early user, Glenda Bernard from Ephraim, Utah, said, “I will admit that I would not mind at all if one of those fine leaders showed up at my home as a respectful, gentleman caller! I can just imagine us having a pleasant visit, just the two of us on my delightful floral-patterned couch.” A clearly excited sister Bernard then added, “I might even take the plastic cover off!” 

The obvious question on everyone’s mind was President Monson’s profile. On this topic Otterson said, “well, I think I speak for everyone when I say that if President Monson, who has the most popular profile on ApostleMingle, could find a second eternal companion, our collective hearts would be warmed and our eyes would be moist.”