DEBORAH: Sisters Quorum has been publicly quiet in the wake of the Joseph L. Bishop scandal, but behind the scenes, our writers have been in an emotional and spiritual tumult. If you’ve followed the blog, you’re aware that some SQ writers have deep, prolonged history with sexual and spiritual abuse. The reality is, as it turns out, many of our writers have been victimized sexually and abandoned, or not believed, by church authorities and often by family members. I’ve watched these amazing survivors grapple with the hard reality that the formal Church, through its authorities, looked the other way, expressing a level of forgiveness or compassion for a sexual predator that resulted in enabling his continued abuse. The level at which this is striking the souls of abuse survivors is deep and primal. The pain it renews, the rage and confusion it reignites, aren’t going away. Continue reading “The Wounded Women of Polygamy Culture”
READER POST: And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends.
Two thousand years ago, our Savior made his victorious entry into Jerusalem. His people looked to him as a living prophet and Son of God, the messiah who would save them in victory and power. I try to imagine shouting “Hosanna!” and laying palm fronds before Him. What would it have been like to be so near my Savior, to give Him marks of His kingship?
But Christ’s kingdom was not of this world; it would not be founded in the powerful structures of men. His lack of military or financial power disappointed many followers. His social and spiritual might was taken as a threat to the powerful institutions of his day, especially the high priests and scribes, who laid plans for his painful and humiliating death. Continue reading “Lamb”
READER POST: This week, video was released of a woman confronting an LDS man, Joseph Bishop, whom she alleges sexually assaulted her while he was a mission president and she was a missionary at the Missionary Training Center (MTC) in Provo. Although both the Church Newsroom and the Bishop family have tried to paint this woman as an unreliable witness due to her church standing, mental health issues, and questionable past, the fact remains that Bishop admits on the tape to molesting another women. He also admits to police in a recent investigation that he asked another female missionary to show him her breasts, which she did. Remember, he was in a position of power over her at the time.
Bishop is the witness, not the woman on the tape, so HER credibility is moot. Continue reading “Moving Forward”
HILDEGARD: We all have days when one. more. demand. could be the straw that breaks us. Being needed is good, even necessary to our well-being and community; but being needed can easily cross the line into too much of a good thing.
Demands come from our families, friends, schools, communities, and places of employment; and if you’re LDS, infusing all of these is a constant, compounding need from the church. Continue reading “Need”
DEBORAH: One of my children suffered a birth injury that left her partially paralyzed in one arm. My doctor initially told me she’d recover in six months. When six months came and went without much recovery, I was bursting with concern and dread. Apparently, most babies with injuries at C5 and C6 do recover, but mine did not—not even after much faith, prayer, fasting, and priesthood blessings that promised a full recovery. By her ninth month milestone, I realized I’d have to accept that, for my sweet baby, a poor recovery was her “full” recovery. Continue reading “Faith, Priesthood Blessing, and the Unhealed Child”
LAURA: When I was a kid, my grandparents lived in a house with a closet that had stairs and a hidden cubby inside. It captured my imagination (imagine! secrets in a closet!), and I loved to play in there. Now, of course, I’ve grown too big to fit inside, and even my very best imaginations can’t make me believe that a closet really is another world. I miss that sometimes–being able to make my real world disappear and let my play one be real for a while.
READER POST: When my friend, *Rachel, visited me and showed me a black eye inflicted by her husband, I was concerned for her safety. She told me about the horrific abuse she had suffered for years and said the psychological abuse was worse than the physical abuse. As a Stake Relief Society President at the time, I had recently attended a regional training session where we were taught that the Church did not condone domestic abuse. I encouraged Rachel to meet with her bishop and felt confident he would help her.
Trigger Warning: This post contains descriptions of self-harm and suicidal ideation.
PILAR: Over a decade ago, in early December, my husband shattered my world. He confessed he was seeing someone else. Continue reading “Three Parallel Cuts”
READER POST: I grew up with a story in my culture about faith and faithfulness and about what it meant to follow God. More specifically, I grew up with a story about people who left my faith community. Continue reading “More than One Story”
MIRIAM: Since the man who had hurt us was there that Sunday, this was one of those Sabbaths when the constant presence of ushers in the hallways was absolutely necessary to me. If you have not been traumatized by violent crime, it might be hard to imagine how I felt. I will try to show you: Continue reading “Amen to His Priesthood”