A few things to remember about willing Bishops
By ruggaexpat
5/20/2010 9:03:35 PM
A lot has been written about Bishops and anger towards them. I just wanted to say a few things about church leaders, particularly bishops. I think I am in a position to comment on this and put forward a bishops perspective concerning the role of a Bishop in this process. I have served as a Bishop and know what that calling is all about and here are my thoughts that I hope will help those who struggle with past counsel given by their bishops:

First please know that the Bishop is a man like any other you come accross every day. He laughs, cries, sleeps, bleeds, gets angry, even farts at times. Sorry just had to drive home the point. They have to take care of the family, keep a job, etc. It is a difficult calling even to try imagine fulfilling. Daily and I mean daily you get calls from ward members who's lives are coming to an end. He has to handle and address all those concerns. If you think you are one of a few in your ward that are secretly seeing him, think again, he has a great capacity to keep things private and confidential. What is the cost of this? Simple, he has to sleep with it, wake up with it, praying for it and no one but no one can hear it, it is between him, you and the Lord. It is a heavy load when you make the calculation.

Specifically about this sin and its accompanying addictions, it is no exception, that load is on his shoulders so give him a break when all he can suggest is something simple. I will say this much, most Bishops underestimate the magnitude of what it takes to break free of this addiction. I will be brave hear and state that some border on clueless, but that is not their fault. They will always send you to the source for all solutions. That is part of their sacred role. His role is not to give you revelation, though it is possible. It is to judge the member's efforts to keep the commandments. He is there to give guidance and let me testify based on my individual experience, when a Bishop says read the scritptures, pray, there is no better counsel for you because he is sending you to the real source for solutions to your problems. Those are the real sources for every solution I have found since C-DAY (confession day). If President Monson were your Bishop he would offer the same counsel. This has been my experience. The simple stuff is the best stuff.

Bishops bring their weaknesses into the calling, they are not suddenly taken from him for the duration of his calling. This means that a Bishop who is an emotional retard LIKE I WAS will not relate well to an emotional individual whos life has taken a turn for the worst. He will do his best (though it will not be enough) but I promise the counsel he gives you under the influence of prayer to our Father in Heaven is inspired every time. It always will be. Any advice sending you to the word of God is inspired and of God himself.

Finally, the Bishop is not called to give psychological help. He may be inspired in certain cases but he is not called to do so. This is unfair to expect him to fix your problems, because he may have the same weaknesses.

What makes the man special is that he has a mantle on his shoulders and it is divine. That same man when he receives the mantle is chosen to judge you even if you don't want to be judged, it is his calling and if he bowed to your pressure, he would not stand worthy as a judge in Isreal.

One final thing, if you think that Bishops are safe from temptation or too strong for temptation, please go back to the drawing board. That is nothing but a big fat myth. He is bombarded by Satan through every channel possible. Appreciate him, love him and take counsel from him. He is not giving you counsel to get rid of you or because he thinks he knows it all. He is more scared than you are to give you that counsel you don't want to hear.

As a former Bishop, I am nothing but embarrassed to sit here writing this and I am so thankful you will never know who I am. That is real shame to know that having acted as a judge in Isreal, I am sitting here telling you all this on this site. The Lord is good to me, I should have been excommunicated, that was real justice for me but I was not and I am so greatful for that Lord I really am and I will do my utmost to live to merit thy mercy thou hast given me.


One final thing    
"Be greatful that the Bishop is trying to help save your marriage or eternal life. Be greatful for everything he does for you, says to you and thinks for you because at the end of the day it is for you. There is more work going on behind the scenes for your behalf than you will ever know.
Just be humble and greatful and I promise the Lord will be on your side. Anything else is a welcome invitation to that slimy slug that will syphon all your emotional and spiritual strength from you. He is all to happy to accept that gift.

The Bishop and Him whom he serves give you the strength you need."
posted at 21:16:39 on May 20, 2010 by ruggaexpat
"I happen to know for a fact that Bishops don't fart! That's just a rumor. Ha ha! Your points are right on the money, ruggaexpat. Thanks."
posted at 22:51:49 on May 20, 2010 by Anonymous
What about this?    
"I'm thankful I'll never know ya either ;)

I've always went to my bishops. Always. And always have had ultra rad ones. At worst just ones that didn't know how to help me. I never blamed them for that.

i'm gonna ramble for a second so bust out your urim and thumim: i'm not going in because I look at my fruits. what good has going in ever done me? besides helped me feel the Spirit and the cleansing power of the atonement it has done nothing to help me change or forsake my sins. Feeling the Spirit is great. A True Friend...when im "worthy" (what ever that means) my Best Friend maybe my Only Freind. but it has never helped me forsake. Maybe i'm decieved. I'd love for God to open to my mind to an experience where I can see, messurably, where I have not dove into something sucky because I had went to the bishop or taken advantage of the the organization of the church in any way for that matter. I suppose when I was young it kept me out of trouble. I just feel like now days its usless and just going in to get all this crap off my chest isn't good enough. I want to forsake it. Excommunication will not change me. I'll repent, or not, excommunicated or elders quorum president...thats my opinion. Im going to feel the same about Jesus and Joseph. I'd tried denying them and its usless. Its in my DNA. Im a mormon whether im excommunicated, going to the bishop, inactive, totally rightous, with callings, with out, moderate n scripture study or totally over zelous and everything inbetween...or not. And yet all this will not help me forsake...or it never has or i dont think it has. So whats the use? whats the point? Honestly. The gosple of Jesus Christ is the "the gosple of repentance" isn't it? Anything more or less then that is evil? Well if i've tried to use the things, I THINK, He's put in place to help "perfect [me] the saints" with little to no avial then really...what am I doing here? this is why I think i probly should be excommunicated (aside from my sins obviously)...or i guess it makes sense to be. "Off with his head." I'm going to go in soon...i just haven't known what I want for the past few months and i dont want to go in there just shrugging my G.D. shoulders like an idiot. But either way its out of duty...not repentance unfortunatly because I've lost faith that doing any of that has anything to do with my repentance. But out of duty for lack of a better term ill go because I know i need to be judged and excommunicated or what ever is in store for me...but i have 0 confidence that it will help me forsake my sins...though i wish with a thousand eternatys that i did have that confidence. I used to go in hoping it would help. Again, not any longer. It's just a feel good experience...and thats about it. It's a feel good eperience even when you feel awful. I know i know God wont make me do it. And maybe i am looking for touch of Satans plan...i dont know.

Anyway...thats my problem with confessing. Aside from all that I really can't wait to go tell all and get this tish all out in the open with my wife and the church so I can just be honest and have it all over sure ill find my self alone...and cut off at least from His church...but right now that all sounds pretty heavenly Mormon 9:4. Maybe one day ill be geared up for resposibility and selflessness again...but i dont think so for now. Shame.

p.s. sometimes i sing a differnt tune. i'd say for the most part this is my dark passanger speaking. im all over the board right now."
posted at 23:29:24 on May 20, 2010 by They Speak
I would have to agree with much of what you've said...    
"Going to the bishop and confessing isn't going to get an addict like me to stop doing what I've been doing. Working the 12 Steps might, though. Confession doesn't happen until Step 5 and it can take awhile to get there. Maybe the answer is to pray for the willingness to submit to working the 12 Steps. When I have been in the pits of despair and have very little hope, I've found that asking Heavenly Father for the willingness to do the right thing seems to help me focus on finding a solution. The solution to my addiction isn't going to more church or doing more church service. I've tried that time and time again. I found the solution by asking people who had been in my same shoes and found a way out. Good luck to you theyspeak."
posted at 02:33:25 on May 21, 2010 by Anonymous
Thanks for the reminder    
"Rugga, I liked this post. I felt sorry for my bishop when I went to him with the problems I was having with my first husband. I remember thinking how I was just a stranger to this guy (he had just been called as our student ward bishop) and now he had to deal with my problems. 12 years later we were new in a ward when my second husband confessed to our new bishop. Again I felt bad that this stranger had to deal with us. Poor guy. Once my bishop even said to me something along the lines of, "You and I are too innocent to have to hear what your husband has done." My husband practically traumatized the poor fellow.

Thank you for giving us the bishop's view, Rugga. I know I am much more open on this site about exactly what I am going through than I am in my local AR meeting. The anonymity is nice! And now my Hubster joined and he is all open here too."
posted at 18:41:05 on January 29, 2011 by katie
Forgot I wrote this one    
"Katie, it is good to be here and share so freely.
I have to copy a lot of these writings I made here because ti really is my 2010 journal. It has been one hell of a ride but little by little I have grown and become more of a man.

You can quote me on this, the hubster will become the "HUNKSTER" yes he will. I hope you and your wife give the 2 vilins time.

One day at a time!"
posted at 20:46:28 on January 30, 2011 by ruggaexpat
"Rugga, you crack me up! "Hunkster." That will be the day!!!! ;)

I'm just like your wife and you seem just like Hubster. He's said many times that he "hates being the villain!""
posted at 21:58:42 on January 30, 2011 by katie
Great Info, Thanks    
"You've offered a valuable perspective for the rest of us, Rugga. Even though it may be painful, thanks for doing it.

I wonder if some are expecting bishops to do more than they are supposed to. I cringe whenever I read a comment criticizing or scolding a bishop for not giving out a harsher penalties (i.e. demanding that a spouse or someone else be excommunicated, disfellowshipped, etc.). Judgment belongs to the Lord, not to us, and bishops are the ones designated by Him to issue his decrees. "
posted at 10:41:41 on January 31, 2011 by iwillnot
Thankful For My Bishop    
"I've had my issues with my bishop, but I really do like him and I'm thankful for his patience. I've exposed the guy to a lot he probably could have lived without, including my crazy ex-husband who is probably still contacting him (he tried to stop me from having our son blessed). I know he's doing what he thinks is best for me. I know he cares. I think we've had our disconnects, but those are probably as my fault as his."
posted at 11:16:17 on January 31, 2011 by dstanley
"You will get your recommend back and that day you do I will act like a bafoon as I did to Speaks news of freedom.

I know you will get there and it is going to be the sweetest thing not just for you but all those who have helped you along the way. It will be a wonderful day for all and your Bishop will rejoice with you."
posted at 21:10:00 on January 31, 2011 by ruggaexpat
You're Right    
"I will get it (it will be my first recommend), and it will be a great day. :)"
posted at 23:40:01 on January 31, 2011 by dstanley
Great story....    
"Just read what you wrote here, and it sounded like my own story...good luck in your journey."
posted at 11:41:29 on February 7, 2011 by chefdalet
"I am resuscitating this one because I am having problems with my bishop and it was a good reminder for me."
posted at 08:52:24 on September 25, 2011 by maddy
Glad it helps    
"I just reread this one.

May 2010 gee wiz that is ages ago.
Maddy I simply would never had made it out of that big mess without my Bishop.

I love that guy in the most brotherly way imaginable."
posted at 14:42:41 on September 26, 2011 by ruggaexpat
Second time    
"This is now the second time I am bringing this one to the top. I just keep researching it. Man do I have trust issues with Bishops!"
posted at 21:53:23 on August 31, 2014 by Maddy

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"Man has a dual nature; one, related to the earthly or animal life; the other, akin to the divine. Whether a man remains satisfied within what we designate the animal world, satisfied with what the animal world will give him, yielding without effort to the whim of his appetites and passions and slipping farther and farther into the realm of indulgence, or whether, through self-mastery, he rises toward intellectual, moral, and spiritual enjoyments depends upon the kind of choice he makes every day, nay, every hour of his life"

— David O. McKay