Monday, December 21, 2015

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad: A Parable of Priorities.

This story begins in church one Sunday morning in early December.  At the Elders' Quorum (men's) meeting, I learned that Lizzie's and my church, which had been starting at 10:50 AM was going to start at 8am the coming year.

Lizzie loves going to church, but I knew that going at 8am was going to be a challenge. At the time, Lizzie was taking some medication which made her really drowsy, particularly in the mornings. But we accepted the change and left for our Christmas break.

Christmas this year was with my family in Anaheim, California--famous for the Happiest Place on Earth, Disneyland.  I say "happiest place on earth," but truly, that is a disputed matter: if you like to avoid crowds of people, Disneyland at Christmas is a risky vacation if you want to ensure marketing strategies are correct summations.

To be clear: I love Disneyland.  As one example, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad in the dark is awesome!

So, on this trip to Disneyland, my parents bought us some early morning passes. I love mornings nearly as much as Disneyland, and I would have deeply enjoyed running through turn-styles at 7am with a tired but energetic wife, and catching a few rides with her before the crowd hit (Indiana Jones!  Space Mountain!).

My career in romantic idealism aside, I didn't seriously consider acting on my strong emotion for one simple reason:

I care more about church than Disneyland.  A lot more.  Given how tired Lizzie had been because of the medicine, I decided to not pressure her to get up early for Disneyland, because I knew that the more mornings she spent up early for non-important reasons (Disneyland), the harder it would be getting up for the important reasons.

So we ended up doing our big Disneyland date on a Saturday night instead of a Friday morning.  And we ended up going to church at 8am every Sunday until we moved North and changed wards (congregations).

As I prepare to be a parent, I hope I'll remember this story. When I get geared up to help my child do things: baseball tryouts, ballet, playing Tic-tac-toe with me-- or even go to Disneyland with me and shooting targets on the Buzz Lightyear ride-- I hope to never pressure my child to enjoy something good at the expense of enjoying something better.

As Dallin H. Oaks once said:

"We have to forego some good things in order to choose others that are better or best because they develop faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and strengthen our families."

Yes, this is true, even if I have to forgo a blissful 7am ride on "It's a Small World" with my Eternal Companion so it will be easier for her to enjoy church later.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

God's plan to exalt his children (April 1971 General Conference)

I hope it doesn't come as a surprise to anyone reading this that The Church of Jesus Christ's views on morality are becoming increasingly unique.  I also hope it isn't a surprise that for many it is difficult to defend such views to those not of our faith.

It is important to remember that Latter-day Saints view their moral standards differently then those not of our faith do.  In April 1971, for example, Bishop Victor L. Brown gave a talk called "The Meaning of Morality." In it, he opened his talk on standards such as chastity with a discussion of the Plan of Salvation:

"First, we should understand who we are. Before we were born, our spirits dwelt in heaven with our Heavenly Father and his Son, Jesus Christ, who is our elder brother. We were faithful to him during that period of our existence. Had we not been faithful, we would have followed Satan as did one-third of the hosts of heaven. This would have prevented our coming to this earth as mortal beings, which was necessary if we were ultimately to attain eternal life and return to the presence of our Heavenly Father. We were faithful, and we are here in mortality with all the potentiality of exaltation."

More recently, several apostles (Elders Perry, Christofferson, and Bednar in Conference, and Elder Hales in a recent Ensign article) have all used the Plan of Salvation in explaining the church's stance on marriage.

Allow me to suggest that one reason the commandments are seen differently by the world and by the Church and its leaders is that, in the church, commandments are like glue:

glue icon
LDS standards of morality are like glue.

Why is glue an appropriate analogy for LDS moral standards? Glue enables us to hold things together.  The plan of salvation is held together by the commandments. Just as you can't build a model airplane without some sort of adhesive, so families and the plan of salvation are held together by "covenants of chastity" that the prophets teach us. See the Family: A Proclamation to the World. As Bishop Brown stated in his talk: "Infidelity and promiscuous sex activity destroy the basic, vital institution of the family, which in turn destroys all that is good in life."

For Latter-day Saints, moral standards hold the plan of salvation together.  These moral standards enable the plan of salvation to operate.  To Latter-day Saints, they are the glue that holds the plan together. This is why the church insists on high standards of conduct for church membership and fellowship: the commandments enable us to be bound and stuck to Christ and Heavenly Father (See D&C 82:3).

The world views the commandments of morality in many different ways. Some people view the commandments as a brick wall, keeping people from happiness.  Others view the commandments as a good idea for some, but not for others.  Still others view the commandments as one of many paths to a happy life (these people will sometimes question why we emphasize our own path and not validate the paths that others take). (Feel free to comment below on other ways that the world views standards of morality.)
Some view the commandments as a brick wall keeping us from happiness
Others view the commandments as one of many paths leading to a happy life.

These views are important, and there are doctrinal explanations of the plan consistent with these views.  (To give two of many examples, one might say: "don't be too critical of the barrier.  It's the only thing that is keeping you from being devoured." or say: "His way is the path that leads to happiness in this life and eternal life in the world to come.")   But when those not of our faith still don't agree with our views, we should remember that we are talking about commandments as glue in a much larger plan, some are talking about commandments as a boundary or road that may be less essential to salvation then glue. (Again, I don't mean to be simplistic here, feel free to comment with other ways to view the commandments.)

Speaking of the commandments in the context of the plan of salvation helps us Follow God's plan and gain joy.  Speaking of them without the plan runs the risk of making something as essential as glue look sticky, arbitrary and even harmful. (To be sure, many people understand the value of glue without seeing an example of its application, and so with the commandments).

As always, these thoughts are my own, are intended to help, but do not reflect the position of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Thanks for reading,

Other blog posts this week discussing the Third Session of the April 1971 General Conference:

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Merry Christmas! A time to calm down and learn of Christ

My thesis today is that we should learn to put aside various political and social controversies and focus on the gift of the Savior of the world this Christmastime. My first pupil is myself (see photo):

(Art by the adorable Alizabeth Worley (C) 2015)

Today Elder Dallin H. Oaks gave a talk to the BYU Management Society. In it, he discussed both what Jesus said in his time on earth, and what he, so far as we know, did not say in his time on earth:

"Christmas is a time to celebrate the birth of the Son of God and also to remember His teachings.

What did Jesus teach the people of His day? And what did He not teach? Ponder this contrast. Perhaps it will have the impact upon you that it had on me when I first heard it about 50 years ago.

What did Jesus teach the people of His day? The people He taught were in slavery to Rome. Yet he did not teach them the military arts or activities they could use to free themselves from the yoke of Rome. He did not even teach them the principles of civil government. He said, “Render … unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s; and unto God the things that are God’s” (Matthew 22:21).

Infant mortality was high in the society in which He lived and life expectancy was low because of a multitude of diseases. Did He teach them the principles of health? There was much hunger at that time. Did He teach them ways to improve agriculture or nutrition? The whole world needed His message, but He said He was only sent to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And what He taught them was how to live their personal lives."

This hits home with me.  There are many problems in this world, and there were many in Jesus' day.  And yes, Christ's teachings today do address select issues (think religious freedom or child trafficking).  But what is the core of Christ's teachings?  Christ himself answered this question:

"Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself."

So, I ask myself, where do Facebook debates over controversial topics come into play?  Certainly, one can state one's stance on many political issues on Facebook as an expression of love for God or our fellow man (whether or not the stance is based in religious dogma). But is spending hours debating these issues with people who have different world views than us really showing a love for God.  Likewise, when we look at polls or news articles about our topic of concern, are we  celebrating Christ or doing what the Romans in Paul did: spending our "time in nothing else, but either to tell, or to hear some new thing?" (Acts 17:4).

So, let us have a Christmas season about Christ, and pick up tangential issues only at times that we are sure we will not detract from Christmas (a tall order, see the photo above).  As Elder Oaks said, so I conclude:

"Latter-day Saints are uniquely qualified to celebrate the mission of Jesus Christ throughout the year. We have the gift of the Holy Ghost, whose mission is to testify of the Father and the Son (see 3 Nephi 16:6). For that reason, we have a duty to testify like the shepherds, who, 'when they had seen [what the angels described], they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child' (Luke 2:17).

We know whom we seek and we know why. We are children of a Father in Heaven who declared, 'This is my work and my glory—to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man' (Moses 1:39). And our Savior—the Jehovah of the Old Testament, the Lord God of Israel—is fundamental to that work."

As always, these thoughts are my own, are intended to help, but do not necessarily reflect the position of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Thanks for reading,

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

58 years of General Conference: What can we learn?/Messages on morality, religious freedom, and the Sabbath from 1971

<This post uses terminology that will be unfamiliar to an audience that is not very familiar with the LDS Faith.  Please contact me if you wish to learn more about my faith or visit>

So a group of bloggers have decided to read one session of general conference a week, beginning with the April 1971 Conference and going until they run out of conferences. The work product of such is a set of blog posts, which will be published once a week.  At the rate they have chosen, they will be able to post blog posts each week for the next 13 and a half years without repeating a session, posting thoughts on the April 2029 Conference in August 2029.

I am timidly joining the effort.  I say 'timidly' because I am mortal and will prioritize my family, my own spiritual scripture study priorities (email me if you want to know about those), and other related priorities over an ambitious goal of 716 blog posts in a row.  I also will periodically blog on other topics as I have done in the past week (see my posts on the First Amendment and Donald Trump supporters, American Universities, and Optimism as examples). Facing this plethora of priorities, I use the word 'timidly.' Links to the contributions of other blogs are included at the end of this post.

That said, today I have time to post, so here goes....

This week, I am focusing on a talk by Elder Mark E. Petersen from the Saturday Afternoon Session of the April 1971 General Conference" entitled "Warnings from the Past." My goal in this post is modest: I will pull out four quotes from it and elaborate on why they are applicable to our day. I will also draw on more recent talks to find parallels between his message and more modern messages. In Each example I illustrate-- morality, religious freedom, and the sabbath, the topics Elder Petersen raise are more apparent concerns than ever before.

1-"Our moral collapse is appalling, but surprisingly, many attempt to justify it. Within recent weeks one of the highest officials of a leading Christian denomination publicly announced that he favors premarital relationships between young people, and his speech was carried internationally by the Associated Press."

This first message-- about disregard for the law of chastity-- resonates well with our day.  In October, President Thomas S. Monson said  something similar: "We will certainly stand out as we make choices regarding morality—choices which adhere to gospel principles and standards."

Elder Petersen's talk emphasized how Latter-day Saints stand out among Christian denominations in our choices regarding morality.  We likewise stand out today: many religious and some Christian denominations openly support same-sex marriage, which is at odds with the LDS Plan of salvation, as well as most orthodox readings of the Bible. In addition, pornography (which is, in essence, digital satisfaction of the same desires that used to cause fornication or adultery) is widely viewed among Americans.  The problems Elder Petersen discussed have simply grown in the last 44 years.

2-Elder Petersen said: "[W]e virtually make a criminal of a schoolteacher who would bring a Bible into the classroom or who might ask the students to recite the Lord’s Prayer. So far have we lost our sense of values!

Some Americans protest reference to the Almighty in the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag, while others would eliminate “In God We Trust” from our coins."

Elder Petersen's reference to religious freedom concerns are messages we hear today.  In April 2015, Elder Hales talked about religious freedom in important ways:
"There are four cornerstones of religious freedom that we as Latter-day Saints must rely upon and protect. The first is freedom to believe. . . .The second cornerstone of religious liberty is the freedom to share our faith and our beliefs with other. .  .The third cornerstone of religious liberty is the freedom to form a religious organization, a church, to worship peacefully with others. . . . The fourth cornerstone of religious liberty is the freedom to live our faith—free exercise of faith not just in the home and chapel but also in public places."

It is interesting that each of the examples of religious freedom Elder Petersen talked about were regarding the Fourth cornerstone that Elder Hales talked about.  While, to be sure, most attacks on religious freedom are pointed at the first cornerstone, today some are not. For example, it took the U.S. Supreme Court to protect the right of churches to have the right to have full discretion in hiring their own ministers.

As Elder Hales is speaking to our day, it is possible we will see more attacks on other pillars of religious freedom in the future. While the message of both Elder Hales and Elder Petersen focus on religious freedom, Elder Hales talk is more specific.

3-"The Almighty provided that we should observe a sacred Sabbath each week. We have flouted this law to his face, and most of us have turned his holy day into one of pleasure or of “business as usual,” and yet the Sabbath was given as a symbol of allegiance to our Creator."

This third message by Elder Petersen is also emphasized in our day by all of the Apostles.  As then-Elder Russell M. Nelson put it last April, "[f]aith in God engenders a love for the Sabbath; faith in the Sabbath engenders a love for God. A sacred Sabbath truly is a delight."

While I'm not sure whether public sabbath breaking is much more common now than in 1971, I'm certain keeping our internal lives in harmony of the spirit of the sabbath is harder than ever with the many distractions we get from technology.

To sum up: each of the messages Elder Petersen spoke on remain applicable today.  The world may seem very different than 1971, but many of the problems remain the same.  Our Goal, as always, must be to reform our personal lives as a way of dealing with our changing world.  God's core commandments will not change as time goes on, so the answers to the world's problems will remain the same.

As always, these thoughts are my own, are intended to help, but do not reflect the position of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Thanks for reading,

Other blog posts this week discussing the Second Session of the April 1971 General Conference.

Good Timber Does Not Grow At Ease
The Adiabolist, or Jihad of the Heart
LDS Conference April 1971 – The Sexual Revolution and Entertainment Media
Being Slow to Anger
Warnings from Warnings from the Past
"Satan" - Moral Agency and the Problem of Evil
Creativity and Celebrating Success vs. The D.F.T. File
The General Conference Project: Controlling the Hulk, Believing the Devil, and Cussing GAs

Friday, December 4, 2015

The state of the American university: a lack of discourse between differing points of view

Tonight I ran across an intriguing gadget.  This website by CrowdPAC studied the donations of faculty members of 148 Universities and ranked them on a political spectrum, from 10 points Liberal to 0 (evenly divided) to 10 points Conservative.

I found two disturbing trends in this data.

1.  There were a total of nine or ten conservatively-donating universities.  The other 138-139 had liberal donations.

2.  There were no more than six universities in the middle half of the spectrum (between five points liberal and five points conservative).

Obviously, the sample of universities was self-selected by the website, so we may not be getting a whole picture here,  However, assuming this site acted in good faith in its cross-selection, we are forced to face a disturbing trend: Most American universities cater to ideologies that are more liberal than the American public as a whole.

Now, some will not be alarmed by this; they will say that liberals have more truth and thus that it is proper that Universities largely be run by liberals.  While this may be true in some respects, for reasons I may someday explain more fully elsewhere, it is not true with respect to the subjects of my expertise-- family policy and legal matters.  There are things to be learned from both sides of the aisle on these matters.  I suspect the same is true in other matters.

Having dealt with the argument that the liberal state of Universities is proper, let me address concerns I have about this study.  First, knowledge is gained not just from those who worship at the feet of political ideologies, but from those who find wisdom to be gained in all ideologies. Indeed, from an LDS Perspective, Elder Dallin H. Oaks has said*:

"Those who govern their thoughts and actions solely by the principles of liberalism or conservatism or intellectualism cannot be expected to agree with all of the teachings of the gospel of Jesus Christ. As for me, I find some wisdom in liberalism, some wisdom in conservatism, and much truth in intellectualism—but I find no salvation in any of them."

There is much lost when we don't raise up as teachers and other leaders those who find wisdom in all ideologies, who are able to find the good in other points of view.  Thus the lack of moderate universities that have a variety of viewpoints is problematic.

A related concept is that Universities become less of a forum to hear strong arguments with views from opposite sides of the spectrum.  If universities are dominated by liberal thinking, it is harder to engage with the best arguments of conservative thinking.  I attended law school at a more conservative law school, but was pleased that the school made a point of regularly inviting liberal guests to visit the school.  Sadly, there are instances (such as this one) where universities have not declined to invite speakers with certain points of view by characterizing the views as unacceptable (never mind the views of the speaker are shared by 40% of the nation and the majority of the world's populace).

In short, as we listen to others, we learn and grow.  Sadly, the state of the American University is making this difficult in the academic setting.

As always, these thoughts are my own, are intended to help, but do not reflect the position of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Thanks for reading,

*Elder Oaks is the only apostle I know of who has said this. As such, his statement may not constitute the doctrine of my faith.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

A plea to Trump supporters: Learn what the U.S. Constitution requires about religious freedom

Image result for donald trump

Update 12/7/2015: Donald Trump has proposed to prevent muslims from entering the USA by any means.  If this religion-specific fear-based rhetoric became law, it would violate the Establishment and Free Exercise Clauses


Religious Freedom is inherently a minority-protecting prospect.  It was the religious minorities who fled England; it was these minorities who were the Pilgrims, the Shakers, the Quakers, the Catholics, etc., that colonized our nation.

Based off the experiences, in our Constitution, we protect religious freedom in these words:

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof"

This means, of course, that the U.S. government can't require the whole nation-- or any one individual--to be Catholic, or Latter-day Saint, or Muslim, or any other faith.  But it also means that the government can't forbid anyone from attending a faith of their choice.  And, by the same token, the government can't make a benefit available to one religion but not others, or revoke benefits from one religion, and not others.

On January 20, 2017, a man or woman will raise their right hand and say: "I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States." This person will be our president for four or eight years, in all likelihood.  No matter who he or she is, we should pray for them.

Now, there are many, many things required of a President, and I am not suggesting any one flaw or asset that any one man or woman has should be dispositive of a vote for this position in a complex world. To be clear: A vote for any candidate for President today is a good faith vote, and no one should be condemned or ridiculed for any vote.  This is equally true in cultures such as my home state of Utah, where many Democrats are unfairly ridiculed.

But that doesn't mean that voters do not have an obligation to learn the qualifications required for President, and vote for a President who will uphold their ideas of good government. In fact, as American Citizens, we are asked to uphold the Constitution too.  New American Citizens are obligated to take an oath to "support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic[.]"

Given this background, findings of a recent poll in New Hampshire are deeply disturbing.  Bear with me while I explain the results:
  • Supporters of the Republican polling leader Donald Trump were asked whether Islamic churches (Mosques) should close in the United States. (The question was worded without mentioning whether the Mosques were of the sort that may encourage terror). A plurality of 49% agreed.  
  • They were also asked whether Muslims should be banned from buying certain kinds of guns.  52% agreed, even though only 20% supported such a ban on sales of these guns to any American.  
  • Last, they were asked whether there should be a database of Muslims in the United States. (again, the question was worded without respect to immigration status). 53% agreed.
With perhaps one exception, supporters of no other Republican candidate shared these views.

{Edit 12/7: Donald Trump has embraced these very views today.} See this Deseret News article for some commentary on that point. That is beside the point of this article, however.

The point is that these Americans should know better. The policies they support clearly violate the First Amendment, and possibly other constitutional provisions as well.

It is obvious where these views come from: a fear of terror. Of course, I oppose terrorism, and I don't deny that many terrorists claim to be Muslim. It is hard to wake up every day with a fear of a war or a terrorist attack, especially so soon after the horrible events in Paris and San Bernardino.

However, most Muslims are not terrorists, and we have ways of preventing terror that don't require us to trample one religion.

Regardless of our situation, Constitutional Rights-- including the freedom of religion-- must operate even when we are afraid.  The very worst time is the time that we must follow the Constitution.*

To those who sympathize with or agree with the Trump supporters who participated in the poll I mentioned: please reconsider your views.  Study history-- what our nation did to Japanese during World War Two, what our nation did to Latter-day Saints in the 1800s, and the reasons why people came to America in the first place. Get to know some people who are from the Middle East.  Learn about American Muslims who are defending the Religious Freedom of Christians. (For example, Asma Uddin) and other committed American Muslims (Saba Ahmed, Sohaib Sultan, Faatimah Knight, and Suzy Ismail, among thousands of others).

Please don't make all religious minorities less safe by undercutting the First Amendment because of an oversized reaction to your legitimate fears.

As always, these thoughts are my own, are intended to help, but do not reflect the position of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Thanks for reading,

*I am grateful to the author of the "Star Wars: Jedi Apprentice" books for putting a similar point in her novels.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Staying Hopeful in a Turbulent World

ISIS. Global Warming. Shootings. Political divisiveness. Refugees. Religious Freedom (or the lack thereof). Family values (or the lack thereof). Drug abuse.  And the list goes on...

These are the headlines that 2015 will be known for. For most people, there is something on this list to worry about (please comment below if none of these things worry you, and I will see you get mental health advice ASAP). In addition, some of these are troublesome as a matter of LDS Theology, and, of course, some are especially troubling to those who are negatively impacted by in a more specific way by these problems (my best to you).

In some ways, 2015 is an archetype of mortal life more generally. As President Boyd K. Packer once explained, mortal life is like a stage production that “has many plots and sub-plots that interweave, making it difficult to figure out who relates to whom and what relates to what, who are the heroes and who are the villains. It is further complicated because you are not just a spectator; you are a member of the cast, on stage, in the middle of it all!” (“The Play and the Plan”)

I am not immune from these trends.  I personally am concerned about several of the items above, as those familiar with my writing prior to starting this blog can attest.

But as I’ve observed men that I sustain as prophets and apostles want to do what Elder Jeffery R. Holland once described as 'attack[ing] double-digit depression' not just in the abstract, but when discussing these very topics we rightfully find disturbing.

A few examples:

In 2011, following a description of many of the moral evils we face (including the sexual revolution and the ills to family values facing us), President Monson said:

“My brothers and sisters, this—unfortunately—describes much of the world around us. Do we wring our hands in despair and wonder how we’ll ever survive in such a world? No.”

In 2014, while speaking about another one of the fears I mentioned—religious freedom—Elder Dallin H. Oaks said:

“Despite the legal challenges and seeming momentum of efforts and trends against free speech and free exercise as they apply to religious motives, religious speech, and religious organizations, I am optimistic in the long run. I am like the character in Rodgers and Hammerstein’s South Pacific, who sang:

‘I have heard people rant and rave and bellow
That we’re done and we might as well be dead,
But I’m only a cockeyed optimist
And I can’t get it into my head’ ”

Elder Oaks is referencing here a wonderful song called ‘cockeyed optimist,’ which I like to play regularly:

And in 2015, Elder Jeffery R. Holland added his own prophetic optimism:

“So, if you haven’t noticed, I am bullish on the latter-days. In nothing could I have more faith than I have in God the Eternal Father; in Jesus Christ, His Son; in their redeeming gospel; and in their divinely guided Church. So, what do we owe our students in this? We owe them a comparable testimony and a life ‘of good cheer.” ‘The Savior asked for that so often that I personally consider it a commandment. However, worry and fear and pessimism and fretting can destroy anyone’s good cheer—yours and that of the people around you. So put a smile on your face, and cherish every day of your life!”

These statements of optimism are one of many reasons that I try to be optimistic about the future.  Being extreme in our worries doesn’t help anyone.  This does not mean we should deny that we should deny problems exist—or, at the other extreme, be apocalyptic. Rather, as Elder Oaks taught us at this past April Conference, when addressing concerns we should strive to “be moderate and measured in criticism and seek always for the broader view of the majestic work of God.”

My hope is that these blog posts I write—and more generally, dialogue among the American populace—will embrace the optimistic and measured approach that our prophets outline.

As always, these thoughts are my own, are intended to help, but do not necessarily reflect the position of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Thanks for reading,

Tuesday, December 1, 2015


I'm Michael Worley. I'm an attorney who works in the field of religious freedom.  As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I take a unique view on marriage and religion.  I'm married to my wife, Alizabeth.

Anyways, feel free to look around.  If you have questions about me, ask on this post.  You may not get an answer, but please ask anyhow.

Disclaimer:  All thoughts on this blog are my own.  No statements of mine should be construed as offering legal advice, and the Rules of professional Conduct limit my ability to offer legal advice publicly in any case. While I will discuss the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I do not speak for the church.

Thanks for stopping by!