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.” 

Monday, December 8, 2014

AREA COUPLE EXHIBITS FIRST SIGN OF UNAVOIDABLE MARITAL COLLAPSE: HANGER STEALING

so much depends upon a red hanger
SCARSDALE, NY—In a move that therapists, bishops, and divorced peoples who have “been there” recognize as the first sign of unavoidable marital collapse, Brandon and Ashley Yancey have begun stealing and hording that most precious of home resources: hangers. Brandon, who seems to still be blissfully happy with his wife of only ten months, recently confided in his “buddy Troy” that “I hardly get my shirt off of the hanger and next thing I know it ends up in Ashley’s two-thirds of the closet!” Brandon elaborated that “I swear I had a red hanger that my tan pants were on, and now I think she’s using it to hang up some old EFY shirt.”

Years of research supported by the experiences of professionals and ecclesiastical leaders demonstrates irrevocably that though Brandon and Ashley may stay married for several years and even have children, the conflict over hangers is the first step in an inevitable process that starts with suspicion, silent recrimination, and disappointment and finally leads to anger, resentment, fear, and the absurd insistance that “you said when we were dating that you liked wire hangers!” As research by Delong, Esler, Geyer, and Rudd in an article in the most recent issue of the Journal of Marital Dissolution about “LDS Divorce Patterns” clarifies, “what starts as hanger hoarding and fights over whose mini temple suitcase gets the best closet location soon escalates to conflicts over wainscoting and car colors that sets the unalterable course to the final cancellation of temple blessings.”

Marriage and Family therapist Maya Sparber says that she “has tried to work with many couples like Brandon and Ashley” only to find that such work is invariably fruitless. “What I find so heartbreaking about this,” explained Sparber “is that it does not even occurred to Brandon or Ashley, since each is internally and silently convinced that the other is now clearly evil, that they actually have the time, resources, and skills to just go buy more **** hangers!” 

Monday, December 1, 2014

CHURCH WINS CONTROL OF KEY BLOGGERNACLE BLOGS AFTER HIGH STAKES POKER MATCH

Salt Lake City, UT—Reports from highly placed sources indicate that the Church has won control of several key “Bloggernacle” blogs as a result of a recent high stakes poker match between “church officials” and representatives from those blogs. Church members and readers should expect to see changes in those blogs within a matter of weeks as a result of the takeover.

Sources note that key people from many “Bloggernacle” sites were initially invited to a meeting “wherein they might share concerns with the Brethren.” It was during the course of that meeting that bloggers were unexpectedly offered the chance to change any church policy immediately if they won the poker match or face losing control of their blog if they lost. Reports indicate that all of the bloggers lost.

“We were completely unprepared,” said representatives from By Common Consent and Times and Seasons. “None of us had played much poker, and Elder [name redacted but that of a European, tulip-ridden country] and Elder [name redacted but might be the son of the roguish, otherwise solitude-loving iceman who helps Anna in Frozen] cleaned up!” The blogger continued, “I thought by the time we were done we’d see some major church policy changes, but no way. In fact, for the next three months our blogs will be nothing but Mormon Messages and Young Women in Excellence program ideas.”

Those bloggers were not the only ones surprised and left without control of their blog. Bloggers from Feminist Mormon Housewives, Segullah, and Faith-Promoting Rumor said that “we were doing all right at the start, I mean, we had not really lost too much, but then they started discussing their conference talks and we started really losing.” When asked what the church officials were saying, bloggers explained that “one would mention something like ‘stay in the boat and hold on’ and all of them would increase their bets, or one might say ‘Is it I’ or simply ‘Stop It’ and they would fold at just the right time.” Added those bloggers, “I think that they might have been working together!”

Besides those blogs, others were also taken over by the church as a result of their poor poker performance. Two bloggers from Rational Faiths, possibly related, fought rather bitterly as they started to lose, with one saying, “how hard can this be, I mean, it isn’t surgery!” Final control of their blog was lost to a church official who is not only, apparently, a poker expert but who also happens to be a surgeon.

The match started especially awkwardly for several bloggers whose only poker experience was “from girls’ camp, scout camp, youth conference, or EFY.” As they started to loose, bloggers from Approaching Justice, Modern Mormon Men, Sistas in Zion, and Zelophehad’s Daughters started to take off articles of clothing. They had to be told that “this wasn’t that kind of poker.”

When asked if the church planned on taking over the Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer, the Bunyion, or the Squirrel, Elder [name redacted but may indicate an affinity for the culinary arts] said, “do people actually read those blogs?” 

The only blog to not lose control to the church was Ordain Women, since they were not allowed into the meeting. 

If any blogs or “unnamed sources” would like to explain who they lost to in the poker match and/or how they lost, feel free to add that in the comments.

Monday, November 24, 2014

CHURCH TO BUILD UPSCALE STRIP MALLS NEAR SMALLER TEMPLES

Church officials hope every commercial center causes
people to say, 
this is both great and really spacious!
Salt Lake City, UT—The unqualified and universally acknowledged success of Salt Lake City’s City Creek Center has reportedly prompted church officials to invest in other shopping areas adjacent to temples throughout the world.

“What we have seen with City Creek,” said an official who could not be named because of the sensitivity of the decision “is that commercial centers go hand-in-hand with temples.” When asked to elaborate on that connection the official explained that “temples bind families and individuals together forever, and City Creek offers them a place to shop, dine, and purchase as a way to celebrate the bond. It is remarkable,” continued the official, “how whether it is late or soon, whether we are getting or spending, we encourage in both places our divine powers, feeling closer to God in this world!”

According to another source the commercial areas will but “suited to the temple and its cultural context.” What that seems to mean is that smaller temples like the ones in North Carolina or Oklahoma will have an adjacent strip mall with “a biscuit or a barbeque place and a really nice Dollar Store,” while in places like Los Angeles “there will be a three story mall with a California Pizza Kitchen right next to the Mega Deseret Gospel Learning and Virtuous Art Purchasing Center.” As another example, the commercial complex in Rome “will have a Maggiano’s,” while Boston’s temple, which serves second and third generation Italians, “will have a pretty nice Olive Garden.”

In addition to making sure that the centers are culturally sensitive and meet the needs of diverse members across the globe, church officials are excited about other benefits that these commercial centers might provide. As another unnamed official said, “commercial centers like City Creek not only increase property values around temples, but they provide a socio-cultural safe-haven for worshipers, offering the comfort of familiar shopping and dining options while also shielding them from the sort of homelessness, sickness, and poverty that one might find in a city and that might otherwise threaten the temple worship experience.”

Monday, November 17, 2014

MINI MISSIONARY LESSON: WORKING WITH GIRL MISSIONARIES

With the lowering of the mission age, the Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer is doing its part to help train young men for the rigors and blessings of doing God’s work. As part of this effort, Elder Kory Anton, who is hoping to clear things up and return to the mission field very soon, offers his insights to help others prepare.

Girl Missionaries: They are not all Unmarriable
Feminists and Fatties anymore!
One of the first things new missionaries realize is that “this ain’t your father or that cool uncle’s mission field anymore!” Back in the day, there weren’t so many girl missionaries, and the few that those guys had to deal with were either feminists or fatties. Not so anymore. Now there are just as many girl missionaries as there are Elders, and let me tell you, plenty of them are smokin’ hot! In the past I’ve spoken about dating Laurels and some of those possible pitfalls. Today I’m going to help you figure out how to work with girl missionaries.

I should say right from the start that some don’t like being called “girl missionaries.” Don’t get me started about all of this “politically correct” garbage which really just amounts to girls and brown people who want to be offended. I mean really—they are girls and they are missionaries. What is the problem with “girl missionaries?” I would love to suggest the obvious—call them “missionaries who are not Elders,” but that takes too long to say. What is easiest is to say “hey you,” when addressing them directly or saying “lady missionaries” at other times. Some missionaries use the term “Sister Missionaries,” but that easily confuses non-Mormons who watch a lot of Sister Wives.

Besides what to call the girl missionaries, there are really two approaches to working with them. The first way to deal with them is to avoid them and any interaction with them when at all possible. The second approach is to realize that any girl missionary might be your destined soul mate, so you should probe her soul as thoroughly as possible. Okay, so these are very different approaches, but not every elder is the same, so I’m hoping you are smart enough to use whichever one works best for you.

The avoid approach is just like it sounds. Wherever you go, pretend that the girl missionaries are not there. Don’t stand by them, open doors for them, lug their suitcases with 80 pounds of makeup around for them, or acknowledge that they exist at all. This is easily done by always hanging out with other elders, pretending you are busy or are reading your scriptures or something, or by quietly faking a stroke. (Wikipedia has a list of signs you might be having a stroke as a handy reference.)  Make sure to not notice a girl missionary’s face, hair, torso, backside, legs, ankles, or cute yet sensible shoes. If she isn’t wearing a burka (and heaven knows I’ve written the First Presidency about it!), pretend that she is. If she addresses you and you feel compelled to respond, remember that that is how it all got started with Adam and Eve.

Avoidance is God’s way of keeping you from all evil, but there will come a time in your life when you will feel certain urges, urges that cannot be avoided. For those urges you will need a soul mate, and we all know people who found their urge-satisfying soul mate in the mission field. Since that is the case, the other best way for working with girl missionaries is to examine and test each one to see if the Holy Ghost will witness to your soul in that very instant if she is the eternal helpmeet that God has given over to you to be by your side for ever and ever. Look deeply into her eyes at even the most casual encounters. Shake her hand extra, extra long; that can let the truth be known to both of your souls. In a light and fun-loving way, get her first name, so that you can say things like, “so, how are you, (long, soul-connecting pause) Peggy?” And then end everything you say to her with her name: “You are great at doing missionary things…Peggy” or “I think that missionaries like you have a special ability to bless the lives of Elders…Peggy.” Comments like that will make it clear very quickly if she is your God-given eternal soul mate.

Girl missionaries don’t cause nearly as many problems as you might be worried about, and I would say that the real key isn’t some crazy foolishness about them being equal partners in God’s work who want respect and genuine appreciation. No, the real key is keeping in mind that you are commanded to be a missionary; for her, it is just extra credit.

The Best of Luck,

Elder Kory Anton

Monday, November 10, 2014

SPIRIT WORLD UPDATE: MORE BUDDHISTS SENT TO WORK WITH MORMONS

Some Mormons were okay with this
symbol until they realized it didn't
illustrate the Young Women's Values
Spirit World—Reports out of the Spirit World indicate that more Buddhist have been sent to bring light and truth to groups of Mormons. The reports say that while some Mormons are quick to respond to what the Buddhist have to offer, others are quite resistant.

One report explains that several Buddhists had been sent to work with Mormons who were grieving for the actions of their wayward, mortal children. In the course of their conversations, Buddhists spoke about letting go of the almost overwhelming anxiety about and attachment to those mortal childrens’ actions. Buddhists introduced concepts like tonglen where Mormons learned to reduce selfish attachment while actually increasing compassion and loving-kindness. Mormons who rejected these Buddhist ideas about letting go of attachment wanted to be eternally sealed to and thereby attached to all of the good people that made them feel good about themselves. Those same Mormons indicated that they did not want to have to worry about “compassion toward the bad people who wouldn’t be in their kingdom.” They also complained that such “crazy talk” is something that they had “never found in any manual” and that it “sounds like the sort of hippie crap that beard prohibitions are meant to prevent!”

Other reports indicate many Buddhists working with Mormons on meditation. Those Mormons soon discovered that, as they started to meditate, it was difficult to find both attentiveness and stillness. Over time attentiveness and stillness started to emerge for them, even in the midst of internal or external chaos. Still, many Mormons rejected this spiritual practice. Such Mormons said that they already knew how to pray, that they had a list of items that they always discussed with God in their customary allotted time (47 seconds), and that the Buddhists could not be praying in the correct manner “since they didn’t ask for protection against any harm or accident that might befall them” and since they were noncommittal about praying that foods like brownies “would nourish and strengthen them.” Those Mormons also complained that “sittin’ around and not doin’ anything” was against both God’s mandate to be constantly and “anxiously engaged in a good cause” and flew in the face of the “pioneer spirit of rollin’ up your sleeves and gettin’ to work!”

A reported final area of potential connection and conflict was over the nature of evil. Many Buddhists talked about meditation as a way to understand desires and drives. Such meditation could allow one to experience discomfort, pain, and even temptation for what they are without feeling the immediate need to rid oneself of them. Those who embraced such spiritual practices found that they allowed Mormons to resist what can seem like “evil” by paradoxically not fighting it. Drives and hungers for food, affection, comfort, security, pleasure, and even sex were compared to tides and were seen as useful, vital aspects of the lived experience that one can attend to, understand, and gracefully, patiently incorporate into life’s vast richness. Those aspects can find their rightful place in one’s life, and one can find her or his rightful place with them. Other Mormons rejected this idea, saying that they had to “constantly keep the ‘stage of their mind’ filled with busy and anxious goodness to prevent ambiguity, laziness, or evil from ‘taking over the play’.”

While some Mormons found insight and joy in what the Buddhists taught, when others found out that those teachings where part of the Dhammapada and other Buddhist scriptures, they rejected the message, saying, “a Book of Mormon, a Book of Mormon, we have a Book of Mormon, we need no more…books…at all!”

Thank you to special investigative reporter Kevin Winters for research on this story.

Monday, November 3, 2014

UNCHARACTERISTICALLY OVER-INDULGENT GRANDFATHER “FEELS LIKE A DEMOCRAT”

The unicorn has always seemed
to Roberts like a more appropriate
Democratic Party symbol
Payson, UT—During a recent weekend wherein he spoiled many of his grandchildren, otherwise very disciplined area grandfather and Republican Donald Roberts reported that letting the kids “pretty much do whatever they wanted without regard for the short or long-term consequences” gave him a chance to “feel like a Democrat.”

Roberts started by giving each of them twenty dollars. Whenever a child asked for more money, Roberts gave them more, disregarding how it was spent, the merit of the petition, or how it might affect the child. Though the grandchildren clearly didn’t care, Roberts’ children asked him where the money was coming from. Roberts replied, “I just give them whatever they want and don’t worry where it will come from or how the debts will be paid.” Added Roberts, “I feel like the Greek government or the state of California.”

Not everything about the weekend visit went as smoothly as planned. One grandchild scraped her knee jumping rope. Roberts assembled all of the grandkids, gave the wounded child a Band-Aid, and then took forty-five dollars from all of the grandkids to cover the cost of anyone’s future Band-Aids. Some children objected, saying that they had Band-Aids already, but Roberts made the Band-Aid insurance obligatory for all of the grandchildren. When Roberts’ children asked why all of the children had to pay so much, Roberts responded that “it was in everyone’s best interest to participate in the Affordable Bandaid Program or, as I call it, ‘Ogrampacare’.”

Toward the end of the stay, some of the children were not getting along. They approached their grandfather, asking him to use his wisdom to make a final decision. Roberts saw that some of the kids had worked out a temporary solution, one that was still unsatisfactory to a majority of the grandkids, but Roberts did nothing, allowing the previous decisions to stand. Said Roberts, “sure, they might have wanted my authoritative decision, and one that might address majority concerns, but it was fun to take an ‘I’m not going to do anything and let a hodge-podge of lower judges decide it all’ approach.” Concluded Roberts, “it was absolutely exhilarating to be both completely unresponsive and yet decisive!”

As the grandchildren left his home, some heard Roberts say, “let’s do this again soon; when you come next it will be really crazy—I’ll call it ‘Hilary 2016!’”

Monday, October 27, 2014

NEW DIRECTOR DECKS OUT TEMPLE SQUARE FOR HALLOWEEN

Like this but with Halloween stuff
Salt Lake City, UT—New Temple Square director Shara Mackley is trying to make her mark on the Square’s famous holiday decorations as the facility gears up for the Halloween rush. “Everyone is just so excited,” said Mackley “about transforming Temple Square into a fun, spiritual, and playfully horrifying place where visitors can see the joyously twisted side of Zion.”

The brimming-with-excitement Mackley is pulling out all of the stops this year. “Of course we’ve got the artificial cobwebs all over the Temple and other buildings,” said Mackley, “the ghostly hands emerging from an all-swamped-out reflecting pool (with spooky lights!), and the over 30,000 demonic-red miniature skull lights in all of the trees!” Mackley then elaborated that “this year were going to add some scary, slow moving mannequins all over the Square that look like zombies who will be holding temple cards and imploring visitors to do their work.” Added an almost breathless Mackley, “it will be wonderful!”

This year’s festivities don’t end with the decorations. Mackley told the Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer, that “like we do every year, the Temple Square missionaries will be all dressed up for the entire Halloween season.” When asked about favorite costumes, Mackley said that “many sisters prefer the old standards, you know, ghost, princess, Marie Osmond, and modest Eve, but some like to dress up as Captain Moroni’s wife Pam, angry and determined Eliza R. Snow, pregnant sister missionary, and protesting ordain women marcher, you know, anything that they can think of to get a laugh out of one of the Twelve Apostles—such kidders!”  Mackley added that she overheard a very excited sister who was going to be “Hermione Granger one day, Hermione-the-Feminist-Speaking-at-the-UN the next day, and then Hermione-who-finds-the-Gospel-and-becomes-a-missionary for Halloween itself.”

Mackley said that she hopes that everyone will feel the true spirit of love and fun that this special time can bring, and she was excited about how Temple Square’s “marvelous decorations will be the perfect backdrop for the First Presidency’s annual Halloween Devotional.”

Monday, October 20, 2014

WISEST WOMEN IN RELIEF SOCIETY ON BACK ROW, SAYING NOTHING

Gresham, OR—In a repeat of what has happened for years in the Gresham ward, this week the wisest women in the Relief Society were seated on the back row. And, also like most weeks, those women said nothing.

Seated on the back row next to her longtime friends was Sister Kathy Turner. This week’s lesson dealt with “Moving Forward with Faith.” When the teacher asked how the sisters could use their faith to deal with a difficult situation, several younger sisters talked about improving Family Home Evening lessons, and the discussion turned to fun ideas that they had found on Pintrest. Sister Turner thought about explaining how her faith had helped her when, as a twenty-year-old new mother, she had to do kidney dialysis for her dying father, how later in life her faith gave her strength to become a foster mother for a very ill newborn, and how through her life her faith gave her hope and love when she compassionately helped many friends and family members pass from this life to the next. Since Sister Turner was not as conversant with Pintrest as some of the other sisters, again this week she never really found a place or way to share her experiences.

Sister Turner’s difficulty in finding a way to contribute was not uncommon. Also seated on the back row was Sister Janice Kato. During the same lesson, Sister Kato wanted to share how her faith had helped her when she was a BYU student in the 50’s and wanted to marry her Japanese boyfriend, but had to leave Utah in order to legally marry. She wanted to share how her faith had lifted her when other Mormons were unaccepting of her interracial marriage and how her faith had helped her years later as a mother of a child struggling with drug addiction. As a substantial part of the class conversation dealt with one sister’s tearful struggle to get her pre-schooler onto a private school waiting list, Sister Kato found it difficult to contribute to the class discussion.

Alongside Sisters Turner and Kato was their friend Sister Maria Del Toro. Sister Del Toro enjoyed the lesson, as she always does, but also found it difficult to add to the lesson. When she thought about how her faith had helped her move forward, she thought about her alcoholic father, her nightmarish childhood, her struggles to leave the violence of Guatemala, and the light that the Gospel of Jesus Christ brought to her life as the mother of 3 difficult boys and an abusive spouse as an illegal immigrant in Texas. She reflected on the many times her faith had given her just enough hope to go on. She would have loved to have said how her faith helped her move forward, but the conversation turned to how glad many sisters felt about posting Facebook comments about conference and Meet the Mormons, and since Sister Del Toro had somehow not gotten around to even seeing Meet the Mormons she simply said nothing.

After the meeting was over, as is their custom, Sisters Turner, Kato, and Del Toro thanked the teacher for the lesson. Sister Del Toro also tried to console the sister who was still struggling to get her child on the pre-school waiting list.

Monday, October 13, 2014

MTE INTERVIEW WITH NEYLAN MCBAINE: POKING HER WITH THE LONG POINTY STICK OF ZION’S FINEST QUESTIONS

The Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer, Zion’s Finest News Source, is glad to give you, our dear readers, the in-depth and groundbreaking interviews that answer the real questions. We are pleased to post this interview which we recently conducted with Neyland McBaine, author of Women at Church: Magnifying LDS Women’s Local Impact. Though other, frankly lesser publications, may attempt similar interviews, only the Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer is willing to really poke current people with the long pointy stick of Zion’s finest questions. As with all MTE interviews, this was conducted at an undisclosed location and without the victim’s interviewee’s knowledge or consent. Cus that’s how we roll.

MTE: How many pairs of purple pants will it take to throw off Mormon male oppression?
Neyland McBaine: That really isn’t what my book is about, I mean, if you…
MTE: Okay, so if you want to be hostile, what do you say to some of the recent accusations that you didn’t actually write this book but instead it was written by Sydney Rigdon’s wife Pam?
Neyland McBaine: I’m pretty sure Sydney Rigdon’s wife’s name was not Pam. In fact…
MTE: Well then, since you brought up modesty, how disturbed were you that a certain apostle may sometimes wear very sheer dress socks that allow glimpses of his ankles?
Neyland McBaine: That doesn’t make any sense. I didn’t bring up modesty, and I have no idea about an apostle’s socks…
MTE: So does that put you in the radical feminist camp with those who say we should alternate between calling the songs “hymns” and calling them “hyrs?”
Neyland McBaine: Did you even read my book?
MTE: Given that this is such a feminist book, what do you think of the risk that you might end up on the dark side in a Jon McNaughton painting?
Neyland McBaine: At least that starts to make sense, but I think that you are missing…
MTE: As a book for women, when will portions of your book be available on Pintrest? Oh, and if I buy it for my womenfolk, is there a strap that comes with it so they can read while vacuuming?
Neyland McBaine: Um, could you please stop talking to me; maybe we could talk after sacrament meeting. 
MTE: If I pass you this tray will you tell me how your book compares with, say, the Harry Potter series?
Neyland McBaine: How did you even find me here?
MTE: One last question—this one is about gender and power: If a male BYU student started to read your book and then felt that taking the steps you suggest would make the church a better place for men and for women, do you think that girls would think he was hot?
Neyland McBaine: Wait, you’re not recording this, are you?

Monday, October 6, 2014

HEAVEN, DISTURBED BY UTAH’S CONTINUED INIQUITOUSNESS, ALLOWS GAY MARRIAGE TO BE LEGAL ONE DAY AFTER GENERAL CONFERENCE

Salt Lake City, UT—In a move obvious to everyone who has cried repentance unto the saints in Utah, Heaven has finally unleashed its wrath upon that state as clearly evidenced by the Supreme Court’s refusal to review lower court decisions and thereby legalizing same-sex marriage just one day after the Church’s General Conference.

“Well, I just think that Heaven couldn’t be clearer,” said sister Jordan Peterson of West Valley City, Utah. “Oh, that we had repented,” continued Peterson, “but, yea, as we have sown filthiness, we will now reap the whirlwind in the form of loving same-sex couples working up elaborate proposals in Home Depot and committing themselves publicly to lives of loving devotion as a punishment for all of Utah’s faithless Mormons!”

Peterson was not alone in her weeping, wailing, and gnashing of teeth. LaVernal Smoot of Saint George noted that “we’ve been warned and forewarned, but apparently we’ve neglected to warn our neighbors and now we will drink the dregs of the cup of Heaven’s wrath with the harrowing sight of two clearly happy, joyously content people willing to make any sacrifice to make the other one the best person he or she can be.” Added Smoot, “frankly this iniquitous door was cracked open when we let single worthy women go to the temple without a husband and then when those liberals in Salt Lake legalized Starbucks, so it’s no wonder we’re gonna end up with Pottery Barn gift registries and mountain sunset weddings instead of crock pots from Walmart and cultural hall receptions like Heaven wants!”

Not everyone saw the Supreme Court’s decision as a sign of divine displeasure, and Jon McNaughton is probably right now painting those people burning in hell in the hope that Heaven will somehow forgive Utah and bring back the “the good old days” when it was always only one man and one woman forever blissfully happy with no exceptions (except, of course, for when it wasn’t).

Monday, September 29, 2014

Monday, September 22, 2014

“SMALL PRICE TO PAY FOR EXACT OBEDIENCE” SAY BYU-I STUDENTS WHO CUT OFF FEET, BOTTOM 4-8 INCHES OF THEIR IMMODEST LEGS

This print of a Spanish auto-da-fe illustrates what happened
in Rexburg, except the Spaniards are dressed less modestly.
Rexburg, ID—Over the weekend several BYU-Idaho students, stung with divinely inspired shame conveyed by President Clark’s widely published Facebook post, responded with characteristic faith to his call for strict obedience by cutting off their feet and the bottom 4-8 inches of their immodestly displayed legs. “As a sacrifice, it was a small price to pay” said BYU-Idaho sophomore Stephanie King of Sandpoint Idaho. Said King, “I mean, if the right and the left foot offend you by your pants being too high while President Clark is looking, then I will go and do what strict obedience demands of me!”

Bloody stumps at the end of the legs of students like King were not the only clear signs of faith on the part of the devoted BYU-I students. Junior Daniel Green of Colorado Springs, Colorado had his face almost completely bandaged. When asked about the bandages, Green explained that “I’m sure it was me that President Clark saw, and the stubble that had already grown back in the hour since I had shaved is something that I now know was driving the Spirit from our entire campus!” Green elaborated that “when I felt what can only be described as the burning in the bosom of fiery, celestial guilt, I want home and shaved and shaved in the hope that I could destroy those iniquitous hair follicles for good.” Green concluded by tearfully explaining the joy and relief that washed over him “once my razor made it far enough that it nicked my jaw bone.”

The sight of the joyous auto-da-fé on the part of these students moved many other students to follow suit. Some cut off buttocks that had doubtlessly caused lustful thoughts by being in sports shorts that were not covered by sweatpants.

The only ones not enthusiastically caught up in the public celebration of exact obedience were a small group of “liberal” students and faculty. That group was seen mocking and pointing fingers at the students. They were also overheard expressing their unwavering conviction that if President Clark didn’t do what they thought he should do then he must be a power-hungry, Pharisaical misogynist who perpetuates rape culture and an empty shell of religiosity instead of the true faith Joseph tried to restore. That small group of “faithful” and “rational” people then formed a circle, patted each other on the back, and chanted in unison their four word article of faith: respect, diversity, and tolerance.

Monday, September 8, 2014

MINI MISSIONARY LESSON: USING GUILT AND MANIPULATION TO BAPTIZE MORE PEOPLE

With the lowering of the mission age, the Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer is doing its part to help train young men for the rigors and blessings of doing God’s work. As part of this effort, Elder Kory Anton, who is hoping to clear things up and return to the mission field very soon, offers his insights to help others prepare.

God wants you to use all means possible to get
people to enter the yoke
As a missionary, your sole purpose is to baptize. Talk all you want about getting close to God or growing spiritually or becoming a better person—those are really just things that loser missionaries say who didn’t baptize as many people as they should have. Missionaries might make up lame excuses, like “we served and loved many people” or “I hope this or that family eventually feels like baptism will bless their lives” or “I honor and respect the lives and agency of those I met,” but all of that is cover for their failure to baptize thousands like early missionaries or anyone in South America. We know that the Lord is bound when we do what He says, and what I’m about to say is bound to give you the highest number when people back in your ward ask how many you baptized.

The key to getting people baptized is using guilt and manipulation. Others may not really say it like that, but trust me, you probably have already had some youth leader (or parents!) who used plenty of both, probably to get you on a mission. Guilt and manipulation can be the very key to heaven; they are truly a bright, shining, morning star!

If you are unfamiliar with how to use guilt and manipulation to baptize more people, let me explain. The key is to use someone’s beliefs or relationships against them. Say, for example, you are working with someone who says they believe in the Bible. Your goal is to force them to see how if they believe in the Bible then they must believe everything you are teaching and get baptized. Read some scripture like Amos 3:7 about prophets, and then say that if they believe the Bible then they must believe that there are always prophets all of the time and since you have a church with a prophet, you must be right and, since they believe in the Bible, they have to get baptized. Or read the scripture in John about other sheep not of this fold and prove that that means that the Book of Mormon is true and that if they believe the Bible then they must believe in the Book of Mormon and be baptized. As you can see, your study time should be spent finding scriptures you can use to force people to see that if they believe the Bible then they must believe you and be baptized. It is as easy as that!

Some people are either not yet convinced or they don’t believe all that much in the Bible. Fair enough. Then you ask them if they love their children or parents. If they say yes, then you say that if they really love them then they will join the church that helps them be together forever and that they must get baptized. If they dodge this, then show something like “I’ll Build You a Rainbow” or something else that makes a powerful emotional appeal, and show them that if they really love those people, they will get baptized. 

Some missionaries lose sight of this. Instead of being bold, denouncing sin with the power of the sword of truth, they talk about creating a mutually respectful environment where they are as open as they would want the investigator to be. Those missionaries have lost sight of the fact that they are the only ones with the truth and that you have been commanded to baptize. Missionaries who have lost the true vision of missionary work love and weep for people who decide to no longer hear their message. True missionaries keep going back, keep using powerful emotional pressure, and keep making arguments that are tighter and tighter until every investigator enters the yoke of the Lord. It may be hard work keeping investigators anxious and feeling the heavy load of guilt and manipulation, but trust me, if you want get rid of ambiguity and doubts and if you want to tell your mission president, parents, ward members back home, and friends that you had lots and lots of baptisms, there is no other way!

The Best of Luck,

Elder Kory Anton

PS: This article is probably from Satan--Avoid!

Monday, September 1, 2014

LDS ARCHAEOLOGISTS: ANCIENT COVENANT PEOPLE PERFORMED VICARIOUS CIRCUMCISIONS

PROVO, UT—Scholars from BYU’s Department of Archeology have confirmed that ancient covenant people performed vicarious circumcisions as part of their temple worship. Dr. Albert Fenn recently provided compelling evidence that “images and fragments of text reveal that ancient peoples in the Americas and Middle East circumcised adolescent priesthood holders on behalf of dead ancestors who had not had that essential ritual performed themselves.” Though Fenn spoke at length about the ancient Abrahamic foundation for such a practice, a undergraduate assistant who asked to not be named commented that “where today doing baptism for the dead can be sort of ‘mixer’ for young women and men, let’s just say that none of the ancient young men were swinging by Wendy’s or Café Rio for some socializing after getting whatever foreskin they had left snipped off for their ancestors!” The same unnamed student concluded, “you think betting baptized 15 times is a pain…”

Monday, August 18, 2014

SURE, AN AFFAIR WOULD DAMN ME AND DEVESTATE EVERYONE AROUND ME, BUT I STILL THINK IT’S A GOOD IDEA

COMMENTARY

By Jordan Howie

Yep, That's What the Affair Will Do,
but it's Probably Worth it
I’ve been married to Jennifer for 26 years now, and we are the parents of 5 lovely children. They are a great family, don’t get me wrong, and it will change their lives like a nuclear accident, but I still think that having an affair with a young woman from work is a good idea.

I will say from the outset that my betrayal of my promises and everything I have claimed to stand for will not be their fault. I mean, let’s be honest, Jennifer still does her best as a wife and mother and so forth, but the chance to have my ego (and other things!) generously massaged by someone who was only 3 years old when I got married is just too good to pass up.

Her name is Lauren, she’s 29, and she is just like those popular and promiscuous girls that I avoided in high school. Well, now I’m older, she’s wise and worldly, and for some reason she wants to hop in the sack with me. What could be better than throwing away years of self-discipline, devotion, and hard-work as well as the love and respect of those close to me for tawdry and disconnected sex interrupted only by moments of superficial conversation and lousy scrambled eggs? 
   
Sure, this will damn me, and not just in the eternal sense. This affair will rob me of any sense of integrity or self-confidence. I will learn that something so empty and meaningless can lead me to abandon everything I value, but Lauren’s Facebook pictures of her in her bikini are so hot that I do not want to miss out on some of that.

And, okay, I can see how this will impact my 19 year-old daughter who is just about to leave on her mission, my married son struggling through college with a wife and young children, and my other three children at home. When they find out they probably won’t be able to hear the noise of their own crying over the devastated wails of my unsuspecting wife. Every Family Home Evening lesson about families being forever and temple covenants and the beauty of sexual expression kept within marriage will transform the locks that used to bind us together into rusted, corroded, and useless scrap metal. But Kelly does this really cute thing when she bites her lip and pulls down the top of her shirt, I’m mean, it is just so hot that I’m sure it will be worth it.

Frankly, cheating on Jennifer and betraying the Lord and my children will be like napalm, that fiery chemical used to destroy every living thing in Vietnam. Yep, this will pretty much emotionally scorch every square foot of earth that is anywhere near me, permanently changing my life and everyone’s life for the worse, including the people I have worked with inside and outside of the church for years and years, but I think I’m going to go for it.

Monday, August 4, 2014

AREA CALL OF DUTY “EXPERT” INVOKES OSMOND/PARKER EXCEPTION AS REASON FOR NOT SERVING MISSION

LAS CRUCES, NM—Local Call of Duty expert Simon Osborn announced to family and friends his decision to not serve an LDS mission. Osborn, who made the announcement simultaneously via Facebook and Twitter, cited the “Osmond/Parker Exception” as a key element of his decision.

“It has been a hard decision for me to make,” said Osborn, “since I have always heard that serving a mission is pretty cool.” Osborn went on to explain that “but, just as Donny Osmond and, more recently Jabari Parker, have felt that they can serve the Lord by excelling in their particular field, so I feel that my insane ability with the FAD assault rifle means that getting whole lobbies of twelve year-olds to rage quit will be the Lord’s mission for me.”

In making his announcement, Osborn clarified that he had already had a missionary experience that showed him how God can use in-game microphone chat to spread His word. He told of an experience where he “totally spawn killed a whole team before dropping a K.E.M strike to end the match, all the while reciting 1 Nephi 3:7 into his headset over and over again.”

“At first we weren’t sure if he was going in the right direction,” says Nathan Osborn, father of the multiplayer missionary. “But after Black Ops came out, I really started to notice the way he stacked his kill streaks and thought he might have it in him. And after seeing him smash lobby after lobby in Ghosts and Modern Warfare 3, I just know my son is doing the best possible thing.”

“One night,” elaborated Osborn, “I was struggling over my decision while no-scoping newbs on a S&D lobby.” Osborn continued, “at first, I just figured that UrgentFury721 was an idiot, but just after he quit I realized that maybe the Lord put him on the map and that same lame spot for a reason. And right at that moment,” said a chocked up Osborn, “I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that I had known UrgentFury721 in the pre-mortal existence and that I has promised to bring him the Gospel to touch his heart just like my sniper rifle had touched his heart repeatedly.” A clearly moved Osborn concluded, “I will keep my promise to you and I will find you UrgentFury721.”

(A special thanks to Trenton Hyer for his expertise and investigative work to produce this important story.)

Monday, July 28, 2014

AREA WOMAN TAKING CASSEROLE TO WARD MEMBER PRAYS TO BE KILLED IN CAR ACCIDENT

BARSTOW, CA—Jan Ellison was glad to take her famous cauliflower casserole to a woman who recently had a baby. “On my way to drop off the meal,” Sister Ellison reported confidentially to the Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer, “well, there I was again, hoping that God would send that truck across the line and right into my Camry.”

When asked about the desire to see her life come to an end, Sister Ellison said that, “I don’t think about it all of the time, you know, just a few times a day.” Sister Ellison continued, “and I don’t want to put anyone out, I mean, I even buckled in the casserole with the address so that the EMTs could still take it to Sister Anderson.”

Sister Ellison was quick to point out that “it seems like others probably imagine everything is perfect with me and my family, but the truth is that when I hear about someone near my age dying suddenly of a heart attack or something, I just wish that it could have been me.”

“It is odd,” remarked Ellison, “since I guess I used to think optimistically about [redacted] and [redacted], but now that that has just become so bleak and miserable for me, now I fantasize about having a stroke or brain tumor.” When asked if she had ever done anything more than hope for an “end to her mortal probation,” Ellison said, “well, no, I guess I just use the old Shakespeare phrase, ‘If chance will have me dead, why chance may deliver me, without my stir’.”

When asked if she had ever confided her thoughts or feelings in others, Ellison said, “oh, I could never tell anyone something so terrible and dark, I mean, my husband and church friends would never have or even understand anything like what I’m thinking or feeling, so I don’t tell anyone how badly I want to move to the next stage of my existence.”

“I just stay busy,” concluded Ellison, “you know, doing things like preparing this month’s visiting teaching message, fantasizing that this might be my last.”

Please reach out to someone if you find a connection with how Jan feels and how you might feel. We are all here to help bear one another’s burdens and to help comfort those who need comfort. 

Monday, July 21, 2014

POINT: INSTEAD OF GOING TO THE RAINBOW FAMILY GATHERING, I’D LOVE TO GO TO MORMON YOUTH CONFERENCE / COUNTERPOINT: INSTEAD OF GOING TO YOUTH CONFERENCE, I’D LOVE TO GO TO THE RAINBOW FAMILY GATHERING

It is unclear if this is from the Rainbow Family Gathinging,
or a Constitution-themed LDS Youth Conference
POINT: INSTEAD OF GOING TO THE RAINBOW FAMILY GATHERING, I’D LOVE TO GO TO MORMON YOUTH CONFERENCE
By Sean Ghirardelli

Again this summer my parents are dragging me to the Rainbow Family Gathering. We fill the minivan with crap and head off to some national park to spend weeks with free-loving, hippie potheads. I just want a summer where I can do something with some structure and organization, something with a little less old person advice (and old person nudity) and something fun. That is why I hope that next year I can go to those week-long summer camp things that Mormons call Youth Conference.

Now, I don’t know very much about Mormon Youth conference, but this year’s Rainbow Family Gathering was in Utah. I didn’t know anything about Mormons or Utah, so when I met Trenton at a convenience store it was pretty interesting to talk to him. He told me about Mormon Youth Conference, and it sounded awesome.

Don’t get me wrong, I do believe that if we let the plants grow then “the food and medicine will just appear from the ground and Mother Earth will abound.” Yes, I love singing about it every year with a guy playing on his homemade guitar, maybe a pan flute accompaniment, but, really, after three days of that @#$%, I would stab that guy in the neck for tacos, a Mountain Dew, and some Twinkies.  

Sure, they are nice enough people, but if I have to spend another big chunk of my summer vacation watching children named “Star Halo” and “Celestial Karma” in Kid Village, where neglect is called “letting them do their thing,” I might just have to strangle someone with her Greenpeace scarf. I guess it is just that ever since Aïsha Dawn Chakra (whose real name is Ashley Palmer) told me that Grandfather David, the Hopi Elder who told the story of the White Buffalo and the end of the world, is actually an accountant from Omaha, well, let’s just say that I see the whole thing differently.

It might not be so bad, really, if the old people didn’t just insist on telling you all of the time how wonderful it is there, how spiritual it is, and kept saying “welcome home.” Really, I don’t even know you people, and please, I know how free you feel and everything, but could you just shower and put some clothes on? Is that too much to ask?

What really sounds like fun are the games, the fun, the structure and the organization, the food, and the good times at Mormon Youth Conferences. I hope I can go there next summer!


COUNTERPOINT: INSTEAD OF GOING TO YOUTH CONFERENCE, I’D LOVE TO GO TO THE RAINBOW FAMILY GATHERING
By Trenton Sanborn

Again this summer my parents are forcing me to go to Youth Conference. I pack up some dress clothes for the dance and the testimony meeting and head off to some college to spend a week with all of the wierdos assigned to work with the youth. I just want a summer where I can do something free and out-of-the box, something with a little less old person advice (and maybe some nudity) and something fun. That is why I hope that next year I can go to the Rainbow Family Gathering. 

Now, I don’t know very much about the Rainbow Family Gathering, but this year I met a kid who was going to it. I had never even heard of it, so when I met Sean at the convenience store it was pretty interesting to talk to him. He told me about the Rainbow Family Gathering, and it sounded awesome.

Don’t get me wrong; I believe that the youth of Zion will not falter and that someday I will both grow a foot or two and be called to serve.  Yes, I love singing about it every year along with someone’s dinky IPhone speaker with the accompaniment of other apathetic youth, but, really, after three days of that stuff, I would smash that stupid IPhone for some free time and an uninterrupted walk in the woods. 

Sure, it is great to serve, but if I have to spend another big chunk of my summer vacation doing church history indexing or preparing hygiene kits for Guatemalan refugees, I might just have to strangle someone with his BYU tie.  I guess it is just that ever since I heard about Paul H. Dunn and found out the South Park has a more accurate depiction of how the Book of Mormon was translated than the church pictures, well, let’s just say that I see the whole thing differently. 
 
It might not be so bad, really, if the old people didn’t insist on telling you all of the time how wonderful it is there, how spiritual it is, and saying “this is Zion.” Really, I don’t even know you people, and please, I know how important obedience is and everything, but it seems like some sexual curiosity is natural, even healthy. How about if we drop the idea that fooling around is second only to murder? Is that too much to ask?

What really sounds like fun is the freedom, the closeness to nature, and the healthy food at the Rainbow Family Gathering. I hope I can go there next summer!

Monday, July 7, 2014

THAT THOUGHT-PROVOKING FACEBOOK STATUS CAUSED ME TO IMMEDIATELY LOSE MY TESTIMONY

Commentary
After reading the status, I tried to buy
an oil drum of Starbuck's coffee

By Nadja Bigslby

I’m 17 year’s old, and have been a church member my whole life, but this morning I lost my testimony when I read a Facebook status. No, I didn’t lose my testimony last year when my uncle died unexpectedly. In fact, that experience only strengthened my faith in the Plan of Salvation. And no, I never wavered when my boyfriend pressured me to be more physically intimate than I was comfortable with. But today, when I read an opinion expressed by a faithful member of the church, I just could not bear the pressure. Sure, the Facebook status was reasonable and thoughtful, but seeing a different view was so overwhelming that I immediately lost my faith that Joseph Smith saw the First Vision, I internally denounced the Young Women values, and then I ran to the nearest Starbucks to buy the most coffeest coffee that they sell. Oh and I bought it with what was going to be my tithing money. 

Now of course I could have just read the status and moved on. Heck, I could have even read it within the context of everything else this person had ever posted. I could have seen the view as part of this person’s faith, a faith evident in post-after-post about love of the Savior, the Book of Mormon, missionary work, and the joy of knowing that families are eternal. It could have been thought-provoking and could have encouraged a stronger, better faith. But that clearly and respectfully stated view was just so overwhelming on my young, teenage spirit that I immediately smoked a pack of cigarettes, sent my resume to be a Miley Cyrus backup dancer, and made myself gay.

Some of you old people, like the person who wrote the Facebook status, may not realize who reads what you write. Of course I attend school, leave my house, and go on the internet. Of course I’m daily bombarded with powerful temptations to set aside the joy that the Gospel brings me. But you need to understand that youth today, in spite of having to be strong in such a world, can only deal with cat pictures with scriptures on them from other members of the church when we get on Facebook. Of course our non-member friends, who we love and respect but who may have different standards than ours, can post the most troubling and difficult things, but when a faithful member says anything that is not just gospel milk and toast, well then the youth of Zion immediately falter and we all get tattoos.

Oh, and it isn’t just me. Sure, my younger sister read the status update and felt relieved that a faithful member could have such a point of view. And some could have even felt comforted to not be alone in faithfully drawing such a conclusion. But such status updates usually immediately destroy the entire fabric of the church. My older sister, for instance, is at BYU, and the entire BYU community is now in ruins because of that update. That sister, who served a mission, married in the temple, and was a student and mother struggling with a newborn son, read the update, put on a spaghetti-strap dress, and left her husband to join a Mexican drug cartel.

So, if you thoughtful, faithful older people on Facebook put anything up, make sure it is either General Authority quotes with a sunrise background or boring, old person stuff like how much your back hurts. Anything else and our weak souls will immediately be destroyed.  

Monday, June 30, 2014

NEW BYU STUDENT TEACHES STUDENT WARD SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON—ON DAVID AND BATHSHEBA

Spritzetoni's father suggested she use images of the story
by artists like Rembrandt to illustrate it. She didn't. 
PROVO, UT—Brand new BYU student Regan Spritzetoni volunteered to teach the Sunday School lesson in her new student ward before she realized what that lesson’s topic would be: David and Bathsheba.

“I’ve never been all that shy, so when they asked who might be able to teach, I just said that I would do it,” explained Sister Spritzetoni. She continued, “And then I realized that we were doing 2 Samuel 11, and I thought that that might be a really bad idea.” Spritzetoni initially worried about how she, as an 18 year-old first year student who decided to start in the summer, would address the topic of sexual purity in a class with other, mostly older BYU undergraduates.

When he found out about his daughter’s pedagogical and theological challenge, Sister Spritzetoni’s father had plenty of advice. As a way of addressing the lesson’s central doctrines in an engaging manner, he suggested that she purchase a small, plastic kiddy pool and then encourage class members to act out the story. He also sent along a list of discussion questions that she could use. Some of those questions included, “how would David have had time to wander around on the roof with so many wives probably already nagging him about repainting the dining room?,” “how could David be an example of the dangers of poor planning?”, and “how many soldiers could have ended up dead and their wives pregnant if David had had the Internet?”

In spite of such feedback, Spritzetoni decided to simply follow the manual. In a moment of inspiration as she began the lesson, she also felt guided to “limit comments made by the three awkward returned missionaries in the third row.” Class members seemed to find the lesson a success, partly because of how it reinforced scripture knowledge and testimony and partly because four class members managed to exchange phone numbers.

Monday, June 23, 2014

IMAGES OF 1940’S YOUTH CONFERENCE TURN OUT TO BE PICTURES OF HITLER YOUTH RALLIES

Edited Photograph
PROVO, UT—When Steven Ignatz took his 9th grade history project to school, he got an unexpected surprise. It turned out that the pictures that his grandparents had always told him were images of youth conference back in Germany in the 1940’s were actually images of a very different “youth conference:” Nazi Germany’s Hitler Youth gatherings.

Original Photograph
“Steven and his family are just some of the nicest, cleanest, and most organized kids in the school, so it was a real shocker,” reported 9th grade history teacher Monica Olivier. “Sure, those Ignatz kids are all natural leaders, but no one would have expected something like this,” stated a horrified Olivier.

The images were part of Steven’s family history project. One image seems to show several young women, all dressed in white and holding hands with a banner in the back. Ignatz’s history teacher noticed that the banner seemed wrong, since “it had the YW logo on it. Well, I checked some of the History image databases, and there was the original image, and it was a gathering of young female Nazis,” explained Olivier.

Steven stated that he simply took the pictures from a family history book that “his gramma spent a lot of time on” many years ago. He was just as shocked as the other students when the pictures that he thought were his grandfather and “a whole lot of very, very excited boy scouts” turned out to be thousands of parading young Arians bent on world domination.

For his part, Steven’s father Emmerich was less surprised. “Of course I didn’t think that my mother had gone so far as to change the pictures and re-write it all, but the family’s past does not surprise me,” explained Brother Ignatz. “I remember a very, very strange feeling of comfort and home when I went to the MTC.” Ignatz elaborated that there “we would line up and march into the devotionals singing ‘Called to Serve’ in our identical suits and clean white shirts, so when I ended up watching those Leni Riefenstahl films in my cinema history courses years later, those original enthusiastic feelings all made sense to me!”

Emmerich, who works in his stake’s Young Men program, also noted that “now that I know more about my family’s past, when I see all of those blond youth at the stake dances doing those line dances in complete unison, I feel the oddest mix of nostalgia and revulsion.” Concluded Ignatz, “at the last dance, when I heard the guy in the song say, ‘Everybody clap your hands,’ and saw the kids form perfect lines and move together in mindless synchronization, I just had to go wait in the van.”

Monday, June 9, 2014

SATAN’S “BOOK OF DEATH” FACES MORE PRODUCTION SNAGS

THIRD LEVEL, EIGHT CORNICE OF INFERNAL DEPTH (PRINT SHOP/KMART RETURNS)—Reports out of Hell indicate that Satan’s efforts to maintain a “Book of Death” to rival Heaven’s “Book of Life” have again hit several production snags.

“It looked like we were in good shape several months ago,” reported Dark Lord Hookworm, executive director of Hell’s Print Shop/Kmart Returns. “But when the project presentation was made, we realized that it would not last as long as we wanted,” said Hookworm. When asked about the problem, Hookworm explained that “the entire list of all of the sins humans had committed on Earth was stored in 666 floppy disks.” Hookworm added, “those are disappearing already, so obviously they would not be around at the End of Days!” 

Further production delays have already marred a project whose goal is to “make sure every sinner is duly punished on Judgment day,” according to Hookworm. “Before the most recent problem, other versions of the Book of Death had been stored on Betamax video cassettes, HD DVDs and most recently on several Zune players,” said Hookworm. At one time the project was even stored on 8 track tapes. When asked about those failed versions, Hookworm said that “that is nothing compared to all of the money we spent uploading it to Friendster and putting it on free AOL Trial CDs.”  

Meanwhile, reports out of Heaven indicate that all of the contents of the Book of Life have recently been moved to, of course, Celestial Cloud-based storage. Concluded Hookworm, “we just do not seem to have the foresight of those upstairs guys, dammit!”

Monday, June 2, 2014

DRAMATIC MARITAL TURNAROUND ALLOWS AREA WOMAN TO ALMOST COMPLETELY STOP BLOGGING

ALLENTOWN, PA—The dramatic turnaround in Jen Curry’s 8 year marriage has allowed her to nearly stop blogging entirely. What used to occupy as much as 35 hours each week has dwindled down to a mere 2-3 hours, as Jen and her husband Mike have rekindled a loving flame that had diminished to mere embers.

The Curry’s dramatic marital turnaround began when Jen’s sister told her about her imminent divorce. What seems to have been most disconcerting for Jen was that her sister’s marriage was not ending because of abuse, excessive fighting, money problems, infidelity, or other dramatic shifts. Instead, Jen noted that “my sister and her husband just grew so far apart that they could no longer even really communicate, and soon there was nothing left to their relationship.”

In response to her sister’s divorce, Jen noted that “I realized that writing for three blogs, keeping up with and commenting frequently on several others as well as being on Facebook and other social media was starting to take the place of what I was missing in my marriage.” 

Jen spoke with Mike about this, and both agreed to seek counseling and set a regular date night. “At first it was difficult,” reported Jen. “It was awkward and sometimes painful, and when that happened, you know, I just wanted to escape of into Pinterest.” But Jen and Mike stuck with it, and Jen soon found that her interest in social media waned as her marriage strengthened.

“Now,” commented Jen, “instead of replying to every post about modesty or home schooling or couponing, I try to think of some ways that Mike and I could connect and enjoy time together.” 

For his part, Mike reported that he has not made any changes. “I don’t do the whole blog thing, and I think it has been 7 months since I was on Facebook.” But Mike did admit that this year he is managing only 2 fantasy football teams. In contrast, last year Mike had 11 fantasy football teams, managed 4 different leagues, and could name the top 30 running backs faster than he could identify his wife’s church calling.  

Monday, May 26, 2014

MITT ROMNEY DELIVERS STATE OF OUR UNION ADDRESS TO WIFE

Romney in his modest La Jolla living room
LA JOLLA, CA—Clearly still trying to adjust after the personal devastation of his loss to President Obama, last Tuesday evening two-time GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney addressed his State of Our Union address to his wife Ann. 

Speaking of the address, Romney reported that “I had planned on speaking to the entire country, set to reassure the nation of a bright future put in place by the noble work of the men and women who came before us, but Ann said she was really too tired for the whole 45 minute version, so I had to condense it to 8.” Though disappointed that the address was not carried live by the major networks or even CSPAN, Romney said that the was hopeful it would be rebroadcasted by “FoxNews, Univison, and a Florida cable access channel called Hair Today.”

No transcripts of the speech have yet been released, but there has been some news coverage of the address. In addition to Ann Romney and the Romney’s Irish Setter Seamus III, a journalism intern, Steven Cannon, from an Idaho newspaper was also in attendance. In his article for Malad City’s Tea Party Truther newspaper, Cannon reported that even without the “show of lights and cameras, the crush of reporters,” Romney still conveyed the “innate authority” of a man who “possesses both a presidential bearing and a podium with teleprompters in his living room.” According to Cannon, Romney “spoke with his usual charm, power, and wisdom about strengthening America’s place in the world, restoring the dignity of everyday Americans through work instead of welfare, and his unwavering commitment to double checking the grocery list after forgetting the milk 3 weeks in a row.”

Cannon also noted that other topics addressed included the threats posed by Putin’s expansionist policies, domestic energy self-sufficiency, and expanded resources and investments in strategic matrimonial “cuddle time.”