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).