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Marriage On A Tightrope: 002: Church Attendance

In this episode, Allan and Kattie discuss finding value at church as a mixed faith couple.  They discuss the difficulties, the benefits, and how they’ve learned to be more respectful of each others perspectives regarding church attendance.


4 thoughts on “Marriage On A Tightrope: 002: Church Attendance”

  1. Sometimes my beef with Mormonism is that we focus way too much on Christianity where I would love that we spend more time focusing on new ideas, thoughts, and revelations.

    We don’t have enough of that these days, we seem to regurgitate old mainstream Christianity perspectives and if that’s what I wanted well any church would do that.

    I just wish we would speak more about what was controversial at church.

  2. Loved the podcast, great job guys. I love your positive take on things and wish there were more models of people like you in the Church remaining engaged while adjusting their faith and world view. David–like you, I have often found the way we frame Christianity in the Church uncompelling. God gives us a long list of commandments that we need to obey (it’s impossible to do) and Christ makes up for our failures and gives God his 100% obedience through the atonement. We get a heavy dose of guilt along the way “how many drops of blood were shed for me?” To me, that is not the good news. I would recommend checking out some New Testament scholarship and the exciting world of people who have explored the wisdom, compassion and social message of Jesus’ teachings (Marcus Borg, Richard Rohr, Peter Enns). For me, that approach to Christ is good news and is exciting, hopeful and engaging and not a guilt trip about all the ways we don’t measure up to perfection.

    1. Felix…thanks for the comment and for listening =)

      I feel the same way. Not to diminish the atonement or sacrifice of Christ, but I gravitate much more toward the teaching that can help me live better today rather than a guilt filled living in hopes of a reward in the next life.

      I find great meaning in putting my focus in how Christ’s example can improve the life of my family, friends and those around me when I do better at putting that example into practice in my own life.

      I’ll absolutely check out those references you pointed out! I’m always on the hunt for a new perspective!

  3. Started listening to this podcast from the beginning b/c my spouse’s faith journey which has included endless hours of reading blogs and listening to podcasts discussing the CES letter and early Mormon as well as New Testament-era Christian history brought me here. It hit home to me that ours is effectively an interfaith marriage when I tried making a teaching moment out of one of my kids repeating language they heard on the playground by invoking the third commandment, “thou shalt not take the name of the Lord, thy god, in vain” at which point my spouse informed me in front of our children that if you study that scripture in context, it doesn’t mean what Mormons think it means – it doesn’t have anything to do with swear words. The other moment was when I said I wanted to teach our kids about tithing by using the simple illustration of earning 10 pennies and giving 1 penny to the bishop at which point my spouse said, well actually, if you look at the historical context, tithing actually refers to donating 10% of your increase over the previous year’s yield – so the LDS understanding is incorrect. Given the place my spouse is at now, the admonition to “Follow the prophet” of course is off the table as far as our primary-aged children are concerned as is a host of what I once thought were cut-and-dry Sunday School pat answers that I always assumed were readily available for teaching our kids. It seems nearly everything now that I would presume to teach our children, my spouse informs me after extensive study and research, either has historically-informed nuances, caveats, and exceptions that change the meaning and context entirely, or is simply deliberately misrepresented or just benignly misinterpreted by mainstream LDS scholars and the general membership-at-large. I don’t begrudge my spouse their earnest search for truth but trying to agree upon and mutually approve and vet anything we tell our children beyond the most banal admonitions like “be nice” and “don’t fight” has left our children’s spiritual welfare in limbo and me, the believing parent, at a loss as how to proceed. I hope this podcast will furnish some answers and ideas I can use to repair the breach. That said, I am bound and determined not to break up our family or excommunicate my spouse from our extended family or precipitate church court action by spilling my guts to our local ward/stake priesthood leadership or either of our active parents and get my spouse excommunicated and simply get a divorce, as so many people in these support groups and forums have related from their own personal experience. My spouse, though sometimes combative and impassioned about expressing their positions informed by post-LDS alternative sources, nevertheless harbors no malicious intent towards anyone at church and such a course of action, I feel, would be utterly counterproductive and do nothing to help our family’s future. Earnestly seeking words of wisdom here…

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