The interesting side note to this is that some five years later, 3 of those bishops are in the Stake Presidency, and I now serve on the HC. None of us have mustaches, but all of us decided that we were going to shave them for a reason similar to why we grew them in the first place. I started mine at at 19 (I didn’t go on a mission, so some might say it was a sign of rebellion) to look older. All of us shaved now in our 40′s and 50′s so that we no longer looked older. We have all scratched our heads about the “no temple worker with facial hair” ban. I will admit that I refused to shave to become a set-apart veil worker, because I had read the handbook of instructions, and figured that if I could hold a TR with facial hair, then the temple worker ban was somebody’s pet peeve.
While I would agonize a little (perhaps a lot) over a bishop’s counsel that I needed to shave, I now think I would not do it. I have had a couple of experiences where blind obedience to a trivial request by authorities in the church left me with a nasty taste in my mouth, and an unsettled feeling in my heart that I had done wrong. I would ponder, pray, and probably follow my feelings as well as my intellect, and if I felt that it was trivial, not prompted by principle or doctrine, then I would refuse, politely.]]>
This Bishop is out of line, in my opinion. If it were me I would have told him the first time he talked to me about it and I would have told the Stake President as well. Then later I may have had to go back and appologize for being so forceful and opinionated…(but I’d still be right).
Bret’s pretty much expressed what he’s going to do. I’m sure he will comfirm that in prayer and do what is right for him.
I don’t know if he will, but we’ve discussed talking to the Stake President about it. That complicates the matter. Does the S.P. back “his” Bishop, does the S.P. correct the Bishop, does the S.P. care and won’t get involved? If he backs the Bishop where does that leave Bret? If he corrects the Bishop where does that leave Bret and his then altered relationship with the Bishop?
Bret will do what’s right for himself…not what’s right for the rest of you or for me, but what’s right for him as directed by the spirit….that’s why he’s such a terrific son.]]>
Having said that, I also do not believe that all callings (or releases) are inspired by the Lord, and that he leaves us to make our judgment calls quite often. At least, that seems to be my experience.]]>
I appreciate your viewpoint and thoughts on this but let me put your mind at ease a bit, I hope.
By reading and responding to these comments I am using this as a way to get my thoughts churning and thinking about BOTH sides of this argument; no more than that. This is between me and the Lord and what He wants me to do about it. Honestly, the easier thing to do would to obey “and let God deal with him,” but ever since I was first confronted there’s just been and uneasy feeling surrounding it.
I truly believe this bishop is trying to do the right thing and help the ward members as best he can and I have been doing all I can since he became bishop last August to help him, even with methods and attitudes I didn’t personally care for. I’m impressed with how much better a bishop he has become in this short time.
HOWEVER, like it’s been said, good intentions often line the road to hell. Doctrine and Covenants teaches us that all things in the church are to be done by common consent. Despite what many may think, things coming from a prophet, seer and revelator is MUCH different than a local priesthood leader. This “counsel” was never counsel, but policy and it was never announced formally or informally, just gently prodded through passing comments in meetings and, I assume, through interviews like mine.
Oh, and yes, I have known this man all my life and have never much cared for him or a couple of his children (totally unrelated from reasons my father may not like him.) One of his children was actually a close friend of mine for years, however.
Unless something changes from what the spirit has told me so far through all my praying, pondering and studying, this policy is NOT inspired. The question then becomes whether the Lord still wants me to obey in order to support a bishop TRYING to do the right thing, obey but give him my thoughts on the policy, or to NOt obey, keep the beard and openly stand up for what I believe to be right.
Right now, I’m leaning towards obeying but giving my thoughts to him, probebly in letter form.]]>