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Tuesday, March 20, 2018

BREAKING NEWS: Church Releases Official Statement on Alleged Abuse Accusations Against a Former Mission President

Hello again, everyone! I wanted to post now with some breaking news from the Church. In response to a request for comment about an ongoing police investigation of charges that a former MTC president may have abused one of the missionaries under his stewardship, the First Presidency has released this statement.

What impressed me as I read it was how balanced it was, making it clear that abuse of any kind by anyone is cause for immediate disciplinary action if the allegations are subsequently verified, but also making it clear that since the recollection of the two people involved (the accuser and the accused) differ so much, and since the police continue to investigate, there is not much Church leadership can do unless and until this is settled one way or the other.

And I for one appreciate the balance. While this may not be true in other nations, in the US, someone is believed innocent until proven guilty. So for that reason, until the allegations are verified as true or false, the situation needs to be in the hands of the law enforcement members involved in the investigation, and if and when the claims are verified as factual, the Church would, of course, take the necessary action on their part.

This measured response from the First Presidency shows clearly how much they intend to keep the balance between the love of the Lord and the law of the Lord, as they mentioned in the press conference on January 16. In my opinion, this is the best approach they could have taken to responding about this issue.

If and when more details are determined about the case, subsequent releases will follow, I am sure. In the meantime, for any of my readers who may have been or are currently being subjected to abuse of any kind, I wanted to post some links to official Church resources on that subject.

You can find resources on that subject, among others, from the Church's page on that subject from the gospel topics section, from Mormon Newsroom's additional resource page covering the subject, and these General Conference talks as well.

Perhaps my all-time favorite among those is the most recent one, given in April 2008 by Elder Richard G. Scott, who, as some of you might recall, committed his talks to memory so he could focus on making sure he was always looking right into whatever camera was covering him. And since the Church has released this statement today, perhaps another talk or two from this next General Conference may be added to that list.

That does it for this post. Any and all comments are, as always, welcome and appreciated. Thank you for the privilege of your time. Until my next post, I wish each one of you all the best and pray that the Lord will bless you all in everything you do.