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Criticism of Mormonism/Websites/FutureMissionary.com/10 Things every Pre-missionary Should Know
A FairMormon Analysis of:A work by author: Anonymous
A FairMormon Analysis of FutureMissionary page "10 Things every Pre-missionary Should Know"
FAIRMORMON'S VIEW OF THE CRITICS' CONCLUSIONS
The positions that the FutureMissionary article "10 Things every Pre-missionary Should Know" appears to take are the following:
- That the website owners have "never heard a single missionary refer to it as the best time of their life until after they’re home."
- That "you’ll even hear of parents who tell their missionary son 'If you come home early, it better be in a box.'"
- That you should not Bible bash.
- That "You’ll probably have a gay companion," but that "he has to completely hide the fact that he’s gay."
- That you should not spread "faith promoting rumors."
- That your girlfriend will probably not wait for you.
- That "spiritual experiences are few and far between," and that "Boredom and frustration will be far more constant companions."
FAIRMORMON'S RESPONSE AND SUPPORTING DATA
By “best 2 years” they mean “hardest 2 years”. They then claim that they have seen missionaries "fall over from exhaustion, develop medical issues that will never go away, and be bedridden from mental breakdowns."
- Why the scare tactic? Why no mention of the positive benefits of going on a mission?
- Missions are tough, but many worthwhile things in life are tough. Ask anyone who has worked for years to achieve some goal in their life.
- There is not an epidemic of missionaries suffering debilitating physical or mental issues. The site authors seem to infer that going on a mission will break the missionary physically and mentally.
Not everyone is there for the right reason. The authors claim that "a whole lot of them are there because of social pressures, whether it be from their girlfriend, friends, or family."
Some missionaries do indeed go as the result of social pressure. Some go without a testimony of the gospel. However, the site authors are in no position to quantify just how many missionaries are in this situation.
You are never alone "with the exception of the shower."
- A bit of hyperbole is being employed here. Again, this seems to be a scare tactic to discourage one from wanting to go on a mission.
- It is well-known that each missionary is assigned a companion, and that they are not supposed to be separated from that companion.
Bible bashing gets you nowhere
We agree with this point.
You’re going to get asked some really tough questions. The authors claim that "There are several scary sounding historical events and doctrines that very few pre-missionaries have ever even heard of. Without plausible explanations, you can’t expect them to take a leap of faith and trust you."
- This section links to another page which directs readers to issues pertaining to Joseph Smith, the Book of Abraham, polygamy, Black Mormons and science.
- It is true that questions regarding these subject may be asked. However, FutureMissionary.com appears to simply state the controversial issues, and provide little in the way of preparation to respond to such issues.
Your carnal desires won’t magically go away
- The authors seem to indicate that having a two year "dry spell" of being unable to date will be too much to bear. If you were in control of yourself before your mission, enough to be worthy to serve, then there is no reason that the "dry spell" will have any worse of an effect on you.
- If you are unable to keep yourself worthy before leaving on your mission, then you shouldn't be going on a mission anyway.
You’ll probably have a gay companion
- The website uses gay missionaries as a scare tactic to discourage kids from going on missions. The representation of gay missionaries in this manner is reprehensible on the part of the site authors.
- The site displays a photo of two male missionaries holding hands, implying that the gay missionary is going to make a move on the straight one. It is further implies that the gay missionary is sexually repressed, which only solidifies the stereotype of being a sexual predator. The reality is that both gay and straight missionaries are subject to the same mission rules.
- While you may have a gay companion, he isn't going to try to hold your hand like the picture suggests. Such stereotypes of gay missionaries are extremely homophobic. The website authors should be ashamed to represent gay missionaries in this manner.
Don’t spread lies, even if they serve a higher purpose
- This section actually refers to "faith promoting rumors." Those who propagate such tales are not lying. Lying implies a deliberate attempt to deceive.
- We agree that the propagation of "faith promoting rumors" is not productive.
She’s probably not going to wait for you
- She probably won't, but some do. One should not leave on a mission with their thoughts focused on who they left behind.
You will not spend 2 years on a spiritual high. The authors claim that "Just like before your mission, truly spiritual experiences are few and far between."
- This is not true. A mission has the potential to have many more "spiritual highs" than the missionary had before his or her mission. The only way that spiritual experiences would be "few and far between" would be if the missionary were focused on things not related to the mission.