Monday, April 24, 2017

CLERICAL ERROR INVOLVING JUSTICE, MERCY CAUSES GOD TO CEASE TO BE GOD

Heaven—An apparent clerical error involving justice and mercy has caused God to cease to be God.

“Well, we have some new paralegals, you know, people with only a few centuries of experience” said a source close to He who used to be the God of All Creation. The source continued that “it looks like one of those new paralegals miscalculated the debt incurred by the sins of some mortal clients.” 

The source continued that the same employee seems to have then “failed to properly suspend the account or properly allocate absolution from the Atonement.” This mistake was subsequently compounded when the novice assistant allowed “mercy to cover the liability” which “of course, amounted to a misappropriation on mercy’s part for a debt still demanded by justice.”

Another source close to the case indicated that “simultaneous with this clerical mishandling came the immediate forfeiture of divine authority.”

A third source indicated that “it’s going to take a few millennia to get it all sorted out,” but the source reassured the Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer that “by then everything should be back to normal.” The source further explained that “previous and future claims duly satisfying both mercy and justice will not be affected by this clerical error.”

When reporters from Zion’s finest news source asked what this will mean in practical terms in the lives of mortal humans, the source clarified that, “as ‘time’ is merely a convenient illusion given to secure agency for mortals, no mortals will actually experience even a ‘temporary’ lack of God.”

Monday, April 17, 2017

MIDDLE-AGED AREA COUPLE MUCH MORE COMFORTABLE WITH HYPOCRISY

Is the mask hiding who I really am
or showing who I aspire to be?
Arlington, TX—Area couple in their mid-40s James and Laura Alvarez are finding that they are much more comfortable with hypocrisy than they had been at other points in their lives.

“I know that when I was a teenager,” said Laura, “finding out about a church leader with a Word of Wisdom problem or about a bishop who sometimes cussed was appalling to me.” She continued, “but now, I have to say that it just isn’t a big deal anymore.”

Brother Alvarez echoed his wife’s sentiments, adding that “as a missionary or even in my twenties, I just expected so much of everyone, especially older members.” He recalled how he “seriously questioned the church when I found out that a then current member of the stake High Council confessed to having an affair.”

Both James and Laura were quick to point out that they don’t think that those things are okay. Said Brother Alvarez, “what that church leader did was devastating to his family, his ward, and so many people, but, I don’t know, now I can see that living like you want to live doesn’t just happen automatically when you get to a certain age or have a certain church responsibility.”

Sister Alvarez developed this same point when she said that “well, what I see now is that all of us find it difficult if not impossible to live up to the high standards and ideals that we believe.” She elaborated that “we all see a level of goodness, obedience, or purity we would like to achieve, but we also, especially as we get older, see how much we fall short.”

“Honestly it was really, really discouraging for a long time,” added Brother Alvarez. “It is hard to believe that the Lord would give a commandment without giving you a way to immediately fulfill it, but, sadly, that just seems to be the way people are.”

The Alvarezes reported that their teenage children are still “shocked when some respected member of the church falls so painfully short,” but, they added, “we’re guessing that over time they will also have much less of a problem with hypocrisy.” Concluded Sister Alvarez, “I’m not sure if it is a matter of lowering your standards or just learning some patience.”

Monday, April 10, 2017

LOCAL USER OF PHRASE “FREE AGENCY,” YOUNG EARTH BELIEVER SOMEHOW STILL GOING TO CELESTIAL KINGDOM

Pathetic Approximation of Actual Mansion
God Currently Preparing for Condie
Rigby, ID—Area man Bart Condie, someone who still uses the phrase “free agency” and believes that the earth is around 6,000 years old, is somehow still going to inherit the Celestial Kingdom.

“It’s pretty shocking to lots of people,” reports an angel familiar with the case who asked not to be identified, “since, you know, Brother Condie believes that different races come from God’s multiple wives and that masturbation is very close to murder.” The angel explained that “lots just think that his ideas are so backwards that he’ll just end up in that middle kingdom, but nope!”

The source further explained that Condie’s exaltation into the highest level of glory “is clearly in his future, in spite of the fact that he still questions interracial marriage, believes all women would be happier as stay-at-home moms, voted for Trump, and is firmly convinced that Moses himself wrote the first five books of the Bible.”

At the top of the list of those who would be surprised by the mansion God is currently creating for Condie in the celestial kingdom are his daughter and son-in-law, graduates of [university name redacted] and [graduate school name redacted], both of whom would disagree with Brother Condie on these and many, many other scriptural, theological, and cultural views. When asked about the final spiritual status of Condie’s daughter and son-in-law, the angel mumbled something about tinkling cymbals but then stated flatly: “no comment.”

Monday, April 3, 2017

PROVO OFFICIALS COMPLAIN ABOUT SMOKE FROM MTC 7-9 HOUR WEEKLY CONTROL BURN OF DEAR JOHN LETTERS

Drum for Chemical Weapons/Dear John Letters
Provo, UT—Provo city officials lodged a formal complaint against the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints over the church’s weekly 7-9 hour controlled burn of Dear John letters. The complaint cited air quality concerns over the smoke and other contaminants “from thousands of letters, postcards, and packages ending romantic relationships between missionaries and those they have left behind.”

While the church has the necessary permits for the controlled burns, the city would like some of them to be conducted elsewhere. “We understand,” said the complaint, “that these letters often contain photographs and mementos of the terminated relationships, generating hundreds of cubic tons of waste that only weighs down and distracts elders and sisters,” but city officials found that the smoke “was making Utah county look like Salt Lake.” 

One solution that has recently floated around church headquarters, according to inside sources, is that all Dear John letters sent to any of the church’s global MTC facilities as well as individual missionaries would be collected, housed, and finally destroyed, along with other chemical weapons, at the Tooele Chemical Agent Disposal Facility in Tooele, Utah.

Monday, March 27, 2017

INHERENTLY SPIRITUALLY SUPERIOR AREA WOMAN SOMEHOW STILL A BAD COOK

Macaroni and Cheese that, despite Spiritual Superiority,
Area Woman Just Cannot Seem to Make 
Mesa, AZ—Area woman Elizabeth Watts, in spite of being, as a woman, inherently spiritually superior to men, including her husband, is still, somehow, a bad cook.

“Just the other day, I heard from the podium again,” said Watts, “the women are inherently closer to God and more spiritual than men, but somehow I still can’t get homemade macaroni and cheese right!” After noting this flaw, Watt’s exclaimed, “honestly, what is wrong with me?!”

Sister Watts’ husband, Clay, who is a member of the local stake’s High Council, regularly comments in his talks on his wife’s inherent spiritual superiority. In a recent address to a visiting ward, Brother Watts laughing noted that he has spent his life riding his “wife’s coattails, or maybe I should say skirttails!” (Note: apparently he either believes that skirts have tails or he thought that riding his wife’s skirt sounded both weird and vaguely creepy. It should also be noted that some in the congregation laughed merely at the awkwardness of his wording.)

Sister Watts has often felt uneasy with her inherent spiritual superiority. While it does help her understand why she does not need the priesthood, she still finds it difficult to meet all of the demands that she feels her church membership places on women. “The added emphasis on how I’m inherently spiritually superior, well, I’m not sure it helps all of the time,” explained Watts.

The Watts’ teenage daughter Caiden has also started to feel both the pressure and her own inadequacy in the face of inherent spiritual superiority. “I know that I’m just more spiritual than the young men around me,” pointed out Caiden, “but, if you promise not to tell my parents, I have to admit that it seems like sometimes I want to have sex just as badly as the boys do!” The young Sister Watts then clarified, using an automotive metaphor, that “sometimes it is hard being more spiritual, since that means I always have to be the brakes while boys are just the gas!”  

Monday, March 20, 2017

AREA WOMAN PERFECTS ART OF USING CHURCH TO AVOID GOD

So, who is this prayer really...to...or...for?
Midvale, UT—Area woman Janet Lands has, after years of practice, perfected that art of using her Mormon beliefs and practices to avoid God entirely.

“Well, what we see,” explained a ministering angel familiar with the case “is a woman who has faithfully fulfilled all of her assignments in order to keep herself so busy and frenzied that she can crowd out the whisperings of the Holy Ghost, especially any promptings about her daughter Maggie.”

Others from the world of spirits who did not want to be named confirmed this assessment, adding that “Lands consistently uses her more than weekly evening temple attendance to avoid both her husband and God’s subtle warnings about the turn her marriage is taking.”

Lands’ use of Mormonism to avoid God comes as little surprise to other spirit world observers. Said one, “honestly, it is just a lot easier to keep a lot of rules and claim a lot of beliefs instead of doing the hard work of actually listening to God, you know, of taking those kinds of risks.” The same observer then added, “and when you get praised for one while the other is invisible, then that just compounds it.”

“What we so often see in people like Lands” interjected another unnamed non-mortal source, “is that when the emptiness of their spirituality starts to dawn on them, lots just look for a pill, a diet, an exercise plan, or a brownie instead of looking at this as a challenge to develop a stronger, deeper faith.”

When Lands was recently called to a high visibility church calling, spirit world observers cautioned that “sure, this might get her to humbly yearn for and attend to God, or it might just give her some sort of false confirmation that what she’s doing is A-okay!”

Monday, March 13, 2017

CHILDREN PLAYING IN LIVING ROOM UPDATE: CONFLICT OVER EXACT RULES TO “THE FLOOR IS LAVA”

Stock Photo
(Arnold Friberg not available
for truer artistic rendition)
Living Room—What started as a fun game for Meaghan (5), Jane (5), and Eli (4) erupted in conflict around the rules of “The Floor is Lava.”

The game, where players imagine the floor to be lava that participants must avoid while simultaneously pushing others in, started pleasantly enough. What sparked the initial conflict was Meaghan’s foot dragging across the carpet. When Jane and Eli proclaimed her “out,” Meaghan replied that she didn’t fall in. This gave rise to a long debate over whether one could be effected by merely touching the lava, by only being sprinkled with it, or whether total immersion was essential.

Meaghan asserted that, since her older brother Patrick had taught her “the real way” to play, she knew the actual rules. Meaghan and, indirectly, Patrick’s authority were then roundly questioned.

Official rules, rule-making authority, lava sprinkling versus immersion were not the only conflicts that marred what would have otherwise been enjoyable time together. Eli boldly proclaimed that Matt (8 months), a baby who only recently began to crawl, was out. Jane, who is fiercely protective of Matt, retorted that Matt doesn’t even know that the floor is lava and therefore cannot be out. Eli pointed out that even without knowing he was in lava, Matt was, as was obvious to everyone, in lava, and therefore out. This point of conflict further divided the children.

The disagreements grew to such a conflictive pitch that adults had to separate them and then direct the children toward other activities. Nevertheless, the kids remained angry, and at press time it is still unclear if any would be willing to return to the once enjoyable activity or if the conflict might ruin the game forever.


Monday, February 27, 2017

NEW 8 VOLUME SET EXAMINES WRITINGS OF BOOK OF MORMON AUTHOR CHEMISH

Just like this, except, you know, about Chemish
Salt Lake City, UT—The Mormon church, Deseret Book, and the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship today announced the publication of an eight volume examination of the writings of the Book of Mormon author Chemish.

“Thankfully, the time has finally come,” explained Clair Hodgkins, “when scholars, theologians, and spiritual people everywhere are really appreciating the amazing insights Chemish offered with a mere sixty-nine words in the middle of the book of Omni!”

Hodgkins is not alone in her enthusiasm for the project. Theologian Spencer Jones added, “we will now have a truly deep, thorough reading of Chemish,” to which he added, “great are the (less than seventy) words of Chemish.”

The eight volume set includes two tomes of scholarly essays from the recent, three-week conference “Chemish: Writer, Keeper of Records, Watcher of Brother” held at Brigham Young University. The set also includes two books of exegesis, a concordance and critical bibliography, an index, a volume that includes replicas of the original Book of Mormon manuscript page and its publication history, and a book-length discussion of Chemish’s critical reception from the early 1800s to the present.

When asked to compare this scholarly project with others like the Joseph Smith Papers, Deseret Book spokesperson Jennifer Webster said, “well, there really is not a lot of comparison, I mean sure Joseph Smith had some insights, and not to take away from him, but how can you really compare Joseph with the power and economy of the words of an ancient scribe/sibling like Chemish?”

The set is priced at $287.95, but, as with all materials from Deseret Book or the Maxwell Institute, the purchase is tithing-deductible.  

Monday, February 20, 2017

BRIDE’S “FRIEND” POOR CHOICE FOR RECEPTION DJ

John Legand: Yes, but All of Me,
Not Used to Love U!
Twin Falls, ID—Sarah Walburn was sure that her long-time “friend,” Wes Mandell, would be an excellent DJ for her recent wedding reception. Sarah was sadly mistaken.

“Wes and I have been best buds since Primary,” said Walburn, “and I know he’s really into music, you know, since he’s made me so many mix tapes over the years, so I thought he’d be perfect to play music at my reception.”

Walburn had a list of songs for Mandell to play, but, according to Mandell, “those songs really didn’t capture this…moment.” Mandell explained that, “I love her choice of Ed Sheeran but ‘Thinking Out Loud’ is not as good as ‘Photograph,’ especially those first lines about how loving can hurt.”

Ed Sheeran wasn’t the only song that Mandell changed. Walburn planned on having Sara Bareilles’ song “I Choose You” play during the cake cutting, but instead Mandell played another Sara Bareillis song: “She Used To Be Mine.”

“Well, the worst part I’d say,” concluded Walburn, “was during the couple dance when he was supposed to play John Legand’s ‘All of Me,’ but for some reason he played John Legand’s ‘Used to Love U.’ I’m sure it was some kind of mistake, but it was...awkward!”

For his part, Mandell said that he has always valued Sarah, “you know, as a ‘friend’,” but that his choice of quietly playing Bonnie Raitt’s “I Can’t Make You Love Me” throughout most of the reception “communicated something everyone really needed to understand.”

Monday, February 13, 2017

RELIEF SOCIETY SISTERS INADVERTENTLY, ENTHUSIASTICALLY WORK OUT TO ABSOLUTELY FILTHY POP SONG

Image from the music video for a song
the sisters do not understand
Layton, UT—Sisters from the Layton South 4th Ward had a wonderful time working out on exercise bikes, pumping their legs to the infectious rhythm of a pop song with utterly filthy lyrical content.

“Oh yah, I just love that song,” said Sister Alyssa Wahl, second counselor in the Relief Society Presidency, activity organizer, and DJ. “I heard it on the radio and knew it would be super fun.”

The song in question, Ariana Grande’s “Side to Side,” describes how the narrator’s clandestine sexual encounters have been so vigorous as to leave her unable to walk straight. This impaired condition gives rise to the song’s title’s complaint of walking “side to side.” In addition, the sexual encounters, which seem to happen “all day” and “all night,” are with a man disapproved of by the narrator’s friends.

The LDS sisters were largely oblivious to how the song’s narrator acknowledges that the sexual encounters allow both partners to not think about anything, including, one assumes, the physical or moral implications of their energetic sexual get-togethers. The sisters seemed equally unaware that the narrator acknowledges her attraction to the man as a temptation, going so far as to call her relationship a “deal with the devil.”

Far from objecting to the song and its sexual content, content which stands in just about the starkest contrast with what one would believe to be these Mormon women’s ideals, many of the sisters cheered when it started.

“Yah, I saw the music video on Youtube,” said one sister, “and it was cool to see them on exercise bikes.” This sister’s comments reinforced her obliviousness to how Nicki Minaj’s rap portion of the song refers to bicycles in a highly sexualized manner.

The song’s sexually explicit content was not lost on all of those in attendance. As Sister Wahl noted, “my younger sister came to the activity, and she said that I might not want to play that song again because it might not be appropriate.” In response to her sister’s concern, Wahl said that if anyone said anything about it, she would put on something that was “a little old-school,” something “safe and appropriate” that she was sure everyone would enjoy.

Her “safe and appropriate” backup selection was Rihanna’s “Shut Up and Drive.”