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      1. Hi Jon, from the uk, can l please have the information on how to get hold of the Audio, thank you, keep up the good work, well done for all the good work you are doing on behalf of the confused and uncertain lds people out there,

  1. Could these people be any more pleasant? What a loss for the church. I found their stories and background to be very relatable. I envy the clarity of their thinking and united position; the effects of the church on my life and relationships has been ruinous.

    1. The LDS church is knee-capping those who had sufficient faith & confidence to look for information to bolster (reinforce) their beliefs; no wonder we refer to the Belongers (in mmany cases Not Believers!) as Sheeple!

  2. Hi Jake and Amy
    I am so sorry this is happening
    I will be up in Anchorage next week and would love a chance to have a beer with you. I am a practicing Mormon in Everett but I am a convert. I am so very In tune with what you are thinking and what you are going through. I am coming up for the ATIA convention.
    I am a beer drinking (actually hard cider drinking) supporter that still attends and wonders sometimes if he should. I just finished five years as the gospel doctrine teacher.
    Let me know
    Noel

  3. What an amazing couple. I too am struggling and posting many of the same concerns, questions and thoughts that Amy and Jake are, makes me wonder when my phone call from the Brethern will come. I am so proud of them for not quietly going away, for making their statement and insisting the Council hear them. Good luck to you both, I will be sending good thoughts, warm vibes and comforting peace your way on October 11th.

  4. Thank you so much for expressing your beliefs and feelings. It helps me more than you will ever know. In all the time in the church, I have received several revelations, but none of its truthfulness. One that I had a few years ago emphasized the love of Jesus Christ for me and for each of his children. Please know that Christ loves you with a love that can not be expressed in words. The only way that I can describe it is that it is a spiritual river that flows from him and through you. Remember that CHRIST LOVES YOU. My love and support comes with this email.

  5. Ironic we went to school together…married the same year…served whole heartily in the church for so many years miles apart in different states but went on a similar journey with spiritual awakening that eventually led us out of the church as well. So grateful we both were able to do it with our spouses. It is heart wrenching to see friends do it alone.

    Thank you for sharing your stories and for having the courage to try and reach maybe that one person who may need to know they are not alone.

    You are loved and respected and I wish you all the best. Its been five years since we left and time does help with those strained family relationships. I think its just such a huge shock when they know what fantastic loving people you are and they cannot reconcile how you can no longer believe. Much love to you both!

    1. Thanks Charie! That means a lot. We need to have a Francom-Malouf story swap–and it would be awesome to catch up. Hey, y’all should make a trip up north! It’s been amazing how many people have reached out from our old school days. Some surprises too. Make me happy 🙂

      1. We are dying to get back up there. I worked there for a summer when I was in college and two summers ago I took Jonathan there and we explored as much as we could in 10 days. It helps that Daniel is there too. We would love to catch up. I will work on trying to make that happen :)Best to you!

  6. You guys are very courageous! If I might, would like you to consider reading Matt. Chapter 23 to the men conducting their punishment of you for being honest.

    Please consider this as JESUS words will cut them down to size & his words will be a warning to them that JESUS himself will hold them to account for their actions against you.

    GoodLuck
    Dave

  7. I thank you so much for telling your story ! My kids (22, 19 & 18) and I can no longer be affiliated with the church . We stopped going when my 19 yr old told me she didn’t feel safe at church . She was about 15 at the time . She finally told me 2 years ago that she is gay. I have so much guilt and shame knowing that I was the one taking her to church each Sunday . Encouraging her to go to activities where she was hearing so many hurtful things. Church caused her so much pain, self doubt and caused her to question her self worth. She is so much better now. She is stronger and knows she is perfectly made. We live in Wasilla and if there is ever an opportunity , we would love to meet you! Congratulations on discovering your freedom and your truth. It’s a difficult road at times , but so worth it.

  8. Beautiful art:- you have a wonderful talent, Amy. Sock it to them at their so called “Court of Love”! You´ve both discovered a wonderful life of freedom and fulfillment now and in the future! Enjoyed hearing your inspired views on the WOW. Never did let the opportunity pass by and not enjoy a good beer, fine wine or an envigorating cup of tea or coffee! Far more healthy in mind and body.
    As an expat Brit, I´m particularly looking forward to hearing some of John´s future interviews from some of my fellow countrymen/women.
    Many thanks.

  9. I comment you for making such difficult choices. I know the gut-wrench that finding truth can entail. Thank you for speaking in opposition to the LGBT policy. There are many active LDS who agree with you, including me. But, most remain silent. It’s an inspiring thing to witness your clear example of living with real INTEGRITY. A quality that we, as a church, admire. Yet, integrity can get you excommunicated? Honesty can get you excommunicated? Questioning the leaders gets you excommunicated!!??!! How would Christ fare in my church today? Something’s very wrong with this picture.

    Best wishes to someone whom I have never know before, but now have a deep respect for.

    P.S. While you are still a member you might want to vote opposed and record it: https://invisiblescubit.wordpress.com/2016/09/26/a-register-for-disapproval-opposition/

  10. You two have been watched by the ‘thought police’! The ‘Mormon’ is not for any thinking person. The beliefs and practices of the LDS church are for the ‘Dark Ages’ and the best thing for a member of the LDS church, who cannot reconcile LDS policy with reality, is to leave the LDS church and live the rest of life in relative peace and harmony. My own position is that I wouldn’t be concerned to attend any so called church disciplinary council. Who do these so called disciplinary council members think they are! Who gave the disciplinary council members the right to tell anyone what to think and what to question! God has not ordained anyone to be judge and jury of anyone.

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  11. Thank you Amy and Jake for your courage! Your love and compassion for others, at the same time you are going through this very hard season in your own lives, is wonderful to see. Your story will help so many people, and it might even save someone’s life. Also – Amy – your art work is beautiful!!! Thanks for providing the link to your web page.

    Thank you John for creating this great space for people like Amy and Jake to share their stories. It was very moving to see and hear their thoughts, feelings and concerns about the LDS church. John, your attentive listening, gentle questioning, and caring love for the people you interview jumps through the screen like a giant virtual hug! Thank you so much for doing this important work.

  12. I served my mission in Alaska and remember the Maloufs. They’re a great family. Thank you for being willing to live your conscience and stand for others.

  13. From a former Mormon (OUT Nov 2015) I send my love and best wishes. I know how much guts this takes. And the łoved ones left behind may never know how hard it is.

    All the best, I look forward to your Return and Report…..

  14. Jesus taught that when one sheep strays, leave the 99 and go get the lost sheep. I can’t wrap my mind around excommunication. It seems so barbaric, but I have never been Mormon. God is faithful even if the LDS church is not! It is a cult from the imagination of a liar, Joseph Smith. Had Emma never caught him with Fannie Alger, I wonder if the section 132 revelation would have come to him. I don’t believe the angel had a burning sword either. Everything was revelation to fit what sins Joseph was committing! Your family will be be blessed by this act! Thanks,for your state on LGBT. I have a lesbian daughter. She is welcomed and loved in our Episcopal church. Doctrines like LDS turn them to atheism. So, sadly misinformed. She, too, is a child of God and has a right to be here and pursue life, liberty, and happiness. Thanks for sharing!

  15. What a “Rad” couple, two people trying to live as authentically and truthfully as possible. As a gay man who left the church some 20+ years ago I applaud your stand and hope there are others, gay and straight who will benefit from your example. Great podcast all!

  16. What an AWESOME couple! Wow, the respect they have for each other, their honesty and their passion for adventure is amazing. I have no doubt this couple will do just fine in life, no matter what. The fact that they have learned the truth about the Church will just make their lives that much more full, no more judgment or guilt. They seem like so much fun and have such a zest for life, I’m very happy for them. Life is soooo much better outside that crazy cult of a church.
    ps I love that she still uses the word “rad”!

  17. Thank you for your story. Sorry it’s your turn for a court of love. It sounds super Christ like. Your pod cast made me want to move to Anchorage for the outdoor activities. Cache Valley is pretty nice, but we would like to distance our selves from Mormonville. If we do I will look you up.

  18. Hey cousin,

    This is probably the wrong place to write this because I feel like I might get attacked by other commenters but this is a sincere question. Are you at a place where you are able to love and respect believing Mormons if they do the same for you? I feel like I am able to sincerely love and respect people who leave the LDS church, but I feel like those same people aren’t able to reciprocate the same kind of love and respect to me. That is the hardest part about this whole thing for me. I feel like next time I see you you will look at me like I’m this pathetic, ignorant bigot. At least that has been my experience in the past with other people although it seems that with time, when the people in my life who have left the church see that I’m not just ‘being nice’ in hopes that they will change, they seem to be able to come respect me as a person. I have a hard time with this. Can we please just accept each other for who we are and not try to convince one another to believe differently? I don’t want to change you and I don’t want you to try and change me. I think it’s perfectly fine to share opinions so that we may come to understand each other but not with the purpose of trying to convince the other to change. Fair enough?

    Love,
    Rebecca

    1. Rebecca,

      You may be right, this may have best been sent via email directly to Jake, but since you left this message in the public domain, I’d like to weigh in and give you my perspective. I have family that I’d love to communicate with who are still 100% active in the church. Unfortunately, every one of them believes I am under the influence of Satan. Now seriously, do you believe your cousin is being influenced by the devil? If you do, you would simply be following the teachings of current Mormon prophets and apostles, and that’s okay; however, if you were my cousin I would find it difficult to interact with you (or take you seriously). One more thing, to the extent Jake and Amy still consider themselves Christian, I can’t think of anything more hurtful than believing that they are cavorting with Lucifer.

      1. DT- I think it’s too bad that you can’t interact with people with differing beliefs. Makes for a small world. Your perspective is exactly what I find so upsetting when people I cherish leave the church. Luckily, those I know who leave the LDS Faith are more accepting of me and my beliefs.

    2. I can’t speak for your cousin of course, but when I left the church I had no desire to “convert” others away from the church. My opinion is to each their own, if the church is working for you, great! Just like I want the respect to no longer be a member and to live life the way I want, I respect others’ right to the same. Live and let live is my motto

    3. Rebecca,

      I just want you to know that you are really brave to say what you did and I respect it. I am someone who has left the church I agree with you that if we would like people to respect where we are we also have to do the same for our family and loved ones as well. I think its easy to fall into the same trap we accuse some members of…being judgmental and elitist. Some people leaving the church start being too critical of those who chose to believe. Unfortunately as imperfect beings I think is is natural to want to validate our own belief systems and sometimes in doing so we hurt the people we care about most and actually aren’t as open minded as we want others to be to us. Better to focus on the common values and love. I had family whose main concern when we left is what you expressed…not wanting to feel made fun of, judged, and belittled for staying. I think its really important to continue to sincerely support each other.

    4. Rebecca, you obviously didn’t listen to the podcast or you would have heard the answer to your question. It was loud and clear. If you don’t have time for the whole program, go to 1.05.10 and your unrest will be put to ease. You have nothing to fear.

    5. Rebecca,

      YOUR church has told you that they are evil sinners. Men that YOUR church claim talk with God have told you not to associate with them. Listen to GC this weekend and you will hear some form of “they repented” every time they tell a story about someone returning to the fold. The fault is not with you or your relatives but with YOUR church. If you claim to follow YOUR church, how can you respect them? If you choose to respect them and their decision, you are not following YOUR church.

      That sounds much more snarky than I want it to but I can’t figure out another way to say it. In this forum, we all have strong feelings about that subject!

    6. Hi cousin! Absolutely. I am in a place where I can love and respect believing Mormons even if they DON’T love and respect me (although, that sometimes does make it a bit harder). I just simply no longer put stock in the LDS church. It’s nothing personal. If you haven’t already, I suggest listening to the podcast and the follow up we hope to do in a few weeks. If anything, this whole experience has taught me to NOT make judgements on someone’s intelligence or honesty based on their religious affiliation. Thanks for asking and we are looking forward to next time we can get together. All the best!

      1. Thanks Jake! I did listen to the podcast and I didn’t mean for my question to imply that anything in your podcast made me think you wouldn’t love and respect people like me, just baggage from the past and it’s just good to hear it:-) When will you be in Loganland again?

  19. Jake & Amy,

    I get the Beer taste not so great so let me give you my recipe for MORMON BEER!

    1. Pick up a six pack of your favorite D&C 89:17 Approved Beer.
    2. Pick up some Grand Marnier from the store.
    3. Add 1-1.5oz to 12oz. Of your favorite beer such as BudLight!
    Bam you have a great tasting Beer any MORMON could drink no problem & the best part it still tastes like Beer!

    Good Luck
    Dave

  20. Amy and Jake, thank you so much for your honest and awesome Mormon Story. John, thank you for the many interviews over the past 4-6 weeks that have shed light on so many different journeys of many brave people from different perspectives, ages, and walks of life.

    Amy and Jake, I am so happy for you and a little envious that you have been able to be a team throughout your marriage on your faith journey. I am still hiding in plain sight as my wife will not even engage in conversations about the Gospel Topics Essay’s or discussions about very vanilla subjects that come from church resources like correlated gospel doctrine and priesthood lessons, or DVR episodes of the Joseph Smith Papers. Everything has a church spin on how members are supposed to think. My wife is well aware of my major shift from being a 6-generation Mormon to a progressive un-orthodox Mormon. All of my adult kids have proudly left the church behind and I am trying to save my marriage by flying under the church radar. It is a difficult lonely road when you don’t have a partner to walk the same journey. Luckily, I have discovered some friends at work and former mission companions that are on a similar path and we get together once in a while to compare notes on church history and current doctrines, etc.

    Good luck to you both on October 11th. I look forward to hearing the follow-up interview on how things go, and your perception of your church leaders as they discipline you in their Court of Love!

  21. Thank you for sharing your story. I seriously love your attitude and outlook and your ability to see humor and radiate love through all of it. My husband and I walked away from the church this past spring after a similar struggle and we thoroughly enjoyed listening to you last night.

  22. Love you both.

    I totally agree with you Amy, excommunication is barbaric and totally opposed to anything Jesus taught. It fits the pattern of a sadistic and totalitarian hierarchy like the “inquisition” of the middle ages. And I think your accusers will regret it for the rest of their lives.

    The church’s doctrine on LGBT is child abuse, pure and simple. And doubtless, despite all its loving Mormons, this is why Utah has the highest rate of teen suicide in the nation. As I study the history of the church, the present doctrine on gays seems likely to have come from those who ask for church funding to support the totally disproven “aversive therapy,” carried out in the basement at BYU. At some future time, it will likely be discarded like other false doctrines such as race.

    I am always astonished at how church directives, especially excommunication, when placed into an operating manual, become “a law unto itself” higher than love, forgiveness, conscience, science and intelligent thinking and like clockwork, automatically eliminate countless of the sweetest. most caring, loving, most intelligent, most valuable people.

    Amy, your art is beautiful. I am delighted to hear you are a welder. In the podcast, I notice your very artistic and beautiful curved balcony, and so skillfully fastened to the wall. Are there ironworkers in your background?

    Thanks again John for your podcasts.

    Love you, Amy, Jake and John.

    Love you all.

  23. Hi Maloufs- thanks for sharing your story. I live just up the Glenn from you guys. Our family is a bit ahead of yours in our transition, and we have kids about the same age. Sounds like you have a good network in anchortown, but if you ever need or want some ‘apostate’ fellowship let us know. Ha. We can boldly say our family is better after leaving and wish you guys all the happiness possible in the days ahead!

  24. The church’s LGBT policy change was kind of a last straw for me too that brought my heavy shelf crashing down. Out of my 9 children (yes I was an over achiever Mormon) I have one gay daughter that was married to her lovely bride this Summer, and one son who is bisexual. The church’s stance does not jive with science and logic, or with compassion and love. I love my Mormon friends and family deeply, but just couldn’t sit in lessons anymore where hateful things were said about gay marriage. I proudly rejoiced at my daughter’s wedding and see no sin in it. It’s taken me several years to slowly back out of the church. Intense fear that I was making the wrong choice kept me going back and forth, in addition to the fact that most of my family and friends were/are Mormon and I did not want to lose those relationships. It’s just not easy to make a graceful exit, although I still am trying to do that. I’m not too public with my concerns although my bishop, close friends and family are well aware. I had long had weird feelings about the temple and polygamy and the blacks in the priesthood etc etc (the list is long) but deliberately didn’t address them, because I was living the Mormon dream…we were a prominent family and I was overall very happy in my Mormon life, so why mess with that and risk losing my eternal blessings? Until suddenly I found myself divorced with 9 kids at home and 3 in diapers, and no career because I had followed the prophet in all things, which left me very dependent. The ideal wasn’t working so well anymore, and I couldn’t understand why the church policy and my patriarchal blessing and the “spirit” would have led me down a road that was so bad for me and my children. The trite answers just didn’t work for me, so one by one I started taking the issues down from the shelf and examining them. This began what has honestly been the most traumatic experience of my life…my loss of faith and slow retreat from activity has been extremely painful. I was an all- in true believer who dedicated my life to the church in all ways for 30 years. It’s been devastating to those close to me, but especially to me personally, to lose all of that. Step by step I am building a new and wonderful life to replace the one I lost, but never before could I possibly have understood how difficult it is to finally confront the truth. 8 out of 9 of my kids have also stopped going. Thank you John for this site. Hearing from others who have been on this same journey has been tremendously helpful to me in calming my heart. Just to know I am not alone. Thank you also to those like this sweet couple who are brave enough to share their stories.

  25. Great interview. In some ways reminds me of the John and Brooke McClay interview with Amy manifesting passion in the pending departure similar to Brooke’s. As someone who has been treading this path of discovery for, well, probably longer than you’ve been alive, I’d promise the potential for excitement in your world view minding opening has only begun. If you have not yet become acquainted with the work of Bart Ehrman, Chair of the Department of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina, Susan Jacoby, Candida Moss, or Jefferson’s expositions on moral philosophy and Jesus as a moral teacher (but not divine) as captured in the Jefferson Bible ….. (and the list goes on) well, there’s a whole nother level of removing the opacity of seeing through the looking glass darkly. The journey has just begun.

  26. I have to say that was the coolest Podcast!
    I was stunned to hear you mention EFY and your deep spiritual experience of recognizing that you are loved. The same thing happened to me when I was about 14. I was challenged at EFY to make demands of God give him a time limit to answer your prayer I wanted to know if God existed and if anything I did really mattered to him. That experienced changed my life. I assumed that because God loved me that the church was true. Your statement “We had experience through the church not because of the church” Really rang true to me. It took me a long time to learn this. I wish I had been old enough and smart enough to separate out the two messages. That saying , be grateful for unanswered prayers has real meaning to me. It propelled me into the church and I trusted their motives and message, Big mistake!

    One of the things that lead me to leave pre internet was another scriptural you referenced, Galatians 5:22 ”By their fruits you shall know them.” I loved the way you put it “their Fruits are shriveled”. I also loved the way you put your quest for accurate information “Limiting your search to church sources is disingenuous” the church attempts to control the outcome by controlling and editing the sources of information and the logic by which decisions are made. I have come to believe propaganda is one of the major evils in this world. It is used to promote tribal thinking, Mormons, Republicans, Democrats, Nationalism,Corporate cultures. are all supported by varying degrees of lies. It was truly a pleasure to hear your story thanks for sharing.
    If you still have it I would love it if you could post your pro and con list.
    I would love to see it.
    P.S. John I’m making a donation today your work is important I think you’re really helping people in pain Thanks
    Glenn

  27. Amy and Jake,

    You are an inspiration to many that suffer silently not able to make the transition as you have due to family and spouse situations. Still, it is encouraging and heartening to learn of your journey. Thank you for sharing your story with us and lending us your strength and optimism. Best thoughts and wish for you and yours in you near and distant future.

  28. Jake and Amy, I am so proud to call you friend. Jake, I have always looked to you as an example of goodness, intelligence, and authenticity. Thank you for your story. It helps me personally in so many ways. You and your family are beautiful people.

  29. Not too long ago, when we spoke the pure Adamic language in the temple ceremony … Pai Lai Ale … Oh god, BEER is good for my mouth!
    My favorite domestic is “Miller Eternal High Life”
    Keep up the good fight !!!

  30. Amy, checked out your website. Love your stuff! Are you in any galleries?
    Good luck to you both! Will try to send “good vibes” s your way next month for the utter silliness with the stake.

  31. Lovely caring sensitive and compassionate couple, thank you Jon, for the podcast, all the very best to both of you, Amy and jake, keep standing up for truth and righteousness and we all must live in hope that the church will one day step up and be totally open and transparent about the past and let members be too and be willing to look for truth without worry or guilt, good luck to you both and my heart goes out to you for the disciplinary court soon, l think your doing a great thing, bless you both in seeking for truth and acting upon it, all the best from England.

  32. Amy and Jake – thanks for taking time to share your story. It is odd how the church represents those like yourselves that say, “I don’t think this is true.” I think it is fairly far from Christlike and loving and actually shows a weak level of faith in their belief.

    I wish you luck in your “court of love”. It would be great for those that are just a few steps behind you to know how it goes, not only next week, but in the coming years.

    And I will give you a helpful hint. It sounds like you guys are a bunch of homebody couch potatoes. Why don’t you get outside a bit and keep a bit active? (I hope you can get the extreme sarcasm in between those lines 🙂

  33. It’s a shame when people like you leave the church because you are the essence of what is needed to improve it.

    Pray for us that remain active, that we can somehow be more accepting & kind towards those outside of the church and that we can someday offer a safe place for everyone.

    1. I don’t pray anymore, but if I did, I would not pray for that. I would however, hope that the people of the church would someday choose to at least practice the golden rule towards those they consider less-thans, outsiders, gentiles, unenlightened, apostates and females. I’ll go so far as to cross my fingers and wish with real intent for that to come about.

    2. David, I appreciate the sentiment, but I don’t think that is ever going to happen, because it is too threatening to the Brethren who control the operations of the Church. Look at what they did to Kate Kelly–and Sonia Johnson, thirty-some years before. They don’t merely excommunicate; they shun. And they don’t look favorably on members who are friendly to those who were kicked out. Those with gay children know full well that the Church looks dimly on parents who are supportive of their gay kids, let alone the gay kids’ spouses.

      There might be a revelation but don’t count on it, and don’t count on it coming soon. The 1978 revelation about blacks came a good fifteen years after the civil rights movement, and that was a lot more palatable to the hierarchy than acceptance of gays.

  34. Jake and Amy,
    My heart goes out to both of you. You are amazing people and I’m very impressed with your story. Thank-you very much for sharing it!
    I’ll be sending you positive energy (although it doesn’t sound like you’ll need it 🙂 ) on Oct 14th.
    If you ever need a place to stay while hiking Mt. Washington in NH look me up.

    1. Thanks! Wish we would have known you a couple years ago when we went up Mt Washington. Man, the weather sure is a mess on that mountain. Seems like every jet stream on the continent runs right into it. It would have been fun to meet up. Come find us in Alaska!

  35. If you think there is a heavy authoritative tone in the church now, what do you think will happen when Dallin Oaks is in charge. And right behind him is Jeffrey Holland and then David Bednar. Then again, my parents almost seem to worship these men. All I can say is that my resignation ends 6 generations of Mormon membership.

  36. Hi, Jake and Amy. Thank you for your story. John Dehlin, keep these coming! I am a convert who has been disaffected since the November policy. When it came out, every bit of shadiness I knew about the church came bursting through like a broken damn. Unfortunately, I’m the only one in my immediate family who’s in this situation. I joined the church alone, now it looks like I’m leaving alone. Jake, you are so lucky to have a wife like Amy! I’m one of the ones who has to remain in silence because of the potential ramifications. Hopefully, the culture will change sooner rather than later. God bless!
    JJ

    1. Thanks JJ. We count ourselves very fortunate that we could go through this together. Hopefully the silent suffering gets broken soon.

  37. Thank you so much for doing this. Definitely one of my favorite podcasts ever. You don’t know the many ways it will help people. Already has. Mostly it’s one I feel good about asking people to watch. These disciplinary councils truly are as barbaric as the inquisition and the Salem witch trials. They are done in the exact same spirit. One day, if enough people are open, they might start to realize where the real problems lie.

  38. What a dynamic and strong couple. Amy, I agree with you that being silent about our thoughts, views, perspectives or opinions in order to demonstrate support of church policy or doctrine is insufferable. How dare they say we can disagree, but silently. That silence counts us complicit with them and invalidates the real life pain such policies and doctrines have on people we know and love. The more people see other strong individuals defend what is not right, the more the tide will swell against them. Best to you both.

  39. I enjoyed the interview they are courageous compassionate insightful and wonderful people —but it seems that lately John focuses ion the Experience of losing one’s faith — not the specific reasons that caused them to doubt and eventually reject the church
    What were the key issues?
    Did the history of the church or Joseph Smith Affect their decision
    It is extremely important to talk about experience of being rejected by the church Family and friends— and as you say the barbaric process of excommunication —but many of us need to hear about the reasons why
    They decided the church was not true
    When active members hear these conversations they still don’t get it because They don’t understand the reason one rejects the church —no one points out the lies and deceptions of Joseph Smith and the history– Active members have no clue why a person would do what they did — when they hear this – they think …. well if The couple rejected the doctrine of the church
    And spoke against it —they were told to leave the church. it makes sense to them because they believe the church is of God
    And by doing this the couple is speaking against God

    Active members immediately turn off any compassion or understanding they might have. the same thing happens in a church court. unless the person being excommunicated is able to talk about the specific reasons– especially the lies and deceptions of the foundation of the church……..The high Council feels justified in rejecting them
    They think this church came from God and therefore anything we they do is from God
    They think the church was divinely inspired —- until they hear the actual specific doctrine or history or reason that caused them to decide the church was not true — including Joseph Smith and the history (which shows it to be a a lie.) But of course some people don’t believe this factual information
    I know it would take a longer interview but it would’ve been interesting to have a two-part interview with them and include more about specifics that made it clear to them the church was not true
    I think most of your short interviews should be much longer because there is so much more information
    The reasons they lost their faith– is so important for active members and those who have left the church —those of us
    Who have Ifound it to be untrue from our studies of the truth claims
    Active devoted members— friends family and neighbors —will never really understand until they hear the facts about The specific reasons people decide the church is not true — including the history and origin of the church
    (If you believe Joseph Smith was a false prophet then all of The religion falls apart )
    But even if their loss of faith was not based in the history or in Joseph Smith it would be interesting to know more about why they decided to church was not true
    This is such a major decision and shift in a persons whole lifestyle and philosophy that there must be a very big reasons for doing that
    Let’s hear more about that
    If this couple can share more specifics it would be interesting either by the comments here or in the next interview
    Thank you John for bringing all of this to Light and helping us to have more understanding and compassion

    1. Emma, thanks for the feedback. We will likely touch on more of the specific issues that led us out of the church during the disciplinary council and the follow-up interview. That said, less is often more. People will look and find the issues when they are ready. We’ll just try to be a support for them when they do.

  40. Hey Amy and Jake,

    Excellent interview. Les and I are totally behind you.
    The church in Alaska was much more accepting of all people when I grew up in Alaska. Saw it becoming more Utah like after my mission. Sounds like the assimilation is now complete.

    When you stopped by Les’s family’s home this summer I got the vibe your relationship with the church has changed, could have been the Jagermeister sunglasses. By the way my daughter wants to be an artist and was totally in awe of you when you pulled up in your sisters jeep. The way home she kept saying “She is so cool, I like her. She is so cool.”

    I can’t believe this is happening to you, especially in Alaska. Crazy to me that an organization wants to 86 customers/members so easily and swiftly after the substantial amount of time and resources from millions of members are spent trying to bring more people into the organization. I guess that gets into the four ways you can spend money and that is another discussion altogether. Maybe I don’t see the point of excommunication here, but my business training has always told me it takes less resources to retain customers as apposed to acquiring new ones. I guess that is a new concept for some in church leadership. I learned this over 25 years go.
    Thinking about the pain you parents will feel from this alone should halt this disciplinary court. To them they are loosing their eternal family. This is more cruel to your parents than anything else it will accomplish. My heart weeps.

    Good luck, we care for you and your family.

    By the way I bought a pair of those sunglasses that night you stopped by. They are mint!

    Rance

    1. Rance!!
      Ha!!! So fantastic to read all that!
      The glasses obviously worked! I figured most Mormons wouldn’t necessarily recognize Jager, but clearly some would appreciate it!
      So glad it was you and Leslie! ( we have so many fantastic memories together!!!)
      It’s so tricky seeing people I love who are so important to me like Leslie and her family but not have enough time to or context to jump into a real conversation about church and doubt etc.
      I can’t tell you how excited I’ve been since reading your comment!!!!!
      Let’s get together!

  41. Hey, Jake & Amy!

    You two are breaths of fresh air and a joy to listen to!

    Amy, I particularly resonated with your spot-on observation that Mormons’ development as human beings is just plain stunted when compared with normal people who grow up without their brains being washed every week. As you know by now, the root cause of this institutional tragedy is the Quorum of the Spiritual Dwarfs holding everyone back at their sorry level of stunted personal development.

    A couple of sound bites – food for thought – for your upcoming Court of Love:

    1. I am confident that several of you brethren in this room are secretly ashamed, if not down right horrified, to be participating in this proceeding and would rather eat broken glass if you felt like you had a choice. I want you to know that I forgive you. Why would I do that? Well, because it’s what Jesus would do. That’s why. I think that’s a good enough reason.

    2. Do you remember seeing paintings of Jesus with the little children? Welcoming them and blessing them? “Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven … well, except for you, little Billy, and you, sweet Jenny. Your parents are gay. so please … please … go away.”

    3. I ask all of you to seriously consider what I am about to tell you. Based on my lifetime of experience in the Church, and particularly recently with the pronouncements The Brethren have imposed upon the entire membership without prior consent or approval, I bear you my solemn witness and belief, that if Jesus Christ himself were sitting in this chair instead of me, that you would not hesitate to excommunicate Him just as surely as you are about to excommunicate us.

    The Court of Love is a rare opportunity, Jake and Amy. You have a captive audience who needs to hear what’s in your hearts. You mentioned that a couple of the brethren have heavily loaded shelves already. Your gift to these brethren is to reflect back into their hearts and souls a clear view of what they are doing to you … in the name of WHO?

    Please record the event. The app on my cellphone makes very clear recordings. Nobody needs to know. You will want to listen to it again and again. Trust me. Record it. Whether you share it or not, do record it for yourselves.

    Big hugs to you both! You are beyond awesome, and make me proud to be an exmo since 1980. My great great grandfather wrote “O how lovely was the morning. Radiant beamed the sun above.” Jake and Amy, your own radiance is beaming brightly and blessing far more people than you will ever know! Thank you finding your path to be who YOU are and for unshackling your talents, potential and your no-fine-print love for others that … apparently … seems to offend The Brethren.

  42. I appreciate the sharing of this story. I think the story should be heard because it capture what happens to many of those disaffected from the church and points to some flaws with the institution.

    I do have one point of critical, but I hope helpful feedback.

    A few weeks ago I listened to Malcolm Gladwell’s podcast, Revisionist History. The name of the podcast I listened to was Generous Orthodoxy. The main narrative of the story was a Mennonite minister who had to come to terms with the reality that he had a gay son that he loved and a Church and fellow church members that he loved. His choice was not to say I choose my son or choose my church, but he chose a higher “middle way.” His church did ecclesiastically “punish” him after he ended up performing the marriage of his son to his partner. But, regardless he still affiliates and works for the betterment of the organization.

    This approach is powerful and would cause me much heartache if the Church would push away such a faithful, but open member.

    The Maloufs sound like good people. They are seeking after truth in their own way and they appear honest, upstanding, and spiritual.

    They also sound like they believe the Church is not a good organization. They are not working toward improving it, but are critical of it in a public way, Facebook, etc. I acknowledge that they have fond memories of the past, but they have moved on.

    If you compare their relationship to the church to a marriage, they no longer care much about their spouse (the Church), perhaps there are some good memories, but they have moved on and appear to only have critiques for the spouse. If the first response to why you want to stay a member of the Church is to have easy contact information on your phone…there is a problem. It sounds like a divorce is inevitable, what is the Church’s method for divorce? Excommunication.

    I am not a huge fan of the process, but it is the archaic system we have.

    A few quotes from the podcast:

    “Orthodoxy without generosity leads to blindness and generosity without orthodoxy is shallow and empty.”

    “You must respect the body you are trying to heal.”

    http://revisionisthistory.com/episodes/09-generous-orthodoxy

    1. Thanks for the honest feedback Matt. Amy also listened to Malcolm’s talk a few weeks ago and mentioned it is very good. We believe the church is doing more harm than good for our family. Other people have a different experience, so I would be hesitant to say it is not a good organization. I also would not hesitate to say that some of the doctrines, cultural practices, and policies are very damaging. We have tried to improve it for years with a great deal of effort. I am certain we were able to influence many individuals, but the corporate side of the church is largely beyond our ability to change. And we no longer wish to try, because we no longer view it as the only true path to happiness, growth, and eternal well-being. Cheers!

      1. Jake,

        I watched and listened to your story. You and Amy are very honest, true and not trying to pull the wool over anyone’s eyes.

        I have known you for years and always respected you and your family, and that will always be the case.

        I was going to say I am sorry that you are going through this, but I won’t because the Church and people in the Church need to see, hear and understand that what they are doing, believing, teaching and preaching is misguided in a lot of ways. One of the biggest things for me have been the ESSAYS. The Church says they are doing these to better explain the history, to be forthright to investigators, members and truth seekers and the anti Mormon establishment. But to me all it has done is shown what was supposed ” Anti-Mormon” rhetoric to be true. That things they taught for years as being Prophesy and from God and stood behind was in most cases “Speaking as a Man” as they said about Brigham Young.

        We messaged ( publicly and privately ) a few times last year when I was on Facebook when you read some of my posts and comments. I hope that some of our back and forth were not a stepping stone for the Ward/Stake lurkers (self-righteous in my opinion ) to start watching you and Amy more closely. I have experienced that. That is why i am off Facebook. Too many people thought they knew my spirituality better than I.

        I hope you realize that this is just a small blip on your radar and life journey. Its not the end of the world for your spiritual, eternal family and soul. As most Mormons think and are taught.

        Be well,

        Jon Marshall

        1. Jon, I think we totally see eye to eye on this. Yep–this is just a blip on the radar (well, a rather significant blip) but the positives far outweigh any negatives. Life is good! Thanks for the kind words and I hope things are well for you.

  43. An observation..

    I was 21 (and newly married) when I walked away from my church and never looked back. My first nine children (six adopted and three home-made), all born within a five year period) grew up with no religious beliefs. I was active in feminist organizations, had gay friends, and volunteered at a residence for people with AIDS.

    And yet–

    And yet, it took my 20 year old daughter two years to get the courage to tell us–over the phone, when she was 3000 miles away at college–that she was gay.

    If it was that hard –and scary–for her, in a family, that was as accepting as we were, how much harder is it for a gay teenager in a Mormon or Evangelical or Jehovah’s Witness family to come out? Your entire identity is wrapped around your church. The approved pathway for you is to be continue with the church’s plan for you–in the LDS church, that means mission and temple marriage and lots of kids. The anti-gay bias is palpable. Suicide goes from being a possibility to, for some, the ONLY option.

    This is a tragedy. The Brethren have blood on their hands, and they are too blind to see it.

  44. Question for you guys: Are we really being such great parents to let our kids stay or go and be “in-charge” of their own decision about the church? You mentioned how you didn’t want your kids to be indoctrinated anymore, but that you set them free to make their own decisions.

    The reason for my question is because we let our kids make their own decisions when we left too. They all left at different times, and are so much happier now. We always felt so proud of that, until we went to a therapy session with our son who has severe OCD and the therapist (here in Washington state) really felt like the triggering point for our son was leaving the church. He laughed when I said we let him make his own decision (he was about 13 at the time) because he said the message to our son was really, “You do what you want, but your dad and I definitely won’t be going there anymore; we don’t believe it anymore, so something is terribly wrong with the church”- in neon lights. The therapist felt we did a disservice in not yanking him out when we left. Don’t know how to feel about that, but now that I’ve been out 4 years, and in reflection, the church only looks more and more damaging, I wonder why I would ever want to leave a child in a dangerous emotional space?

    As an aside, we don’t believe the church caused the OCD, that was already there, but the whole transition and upheaval, even though it led to such a better place in so many ways, might have been a factor in the increase in the severity. Our son, who is now 17, says he is happy we let him be in charge of himself. It allowed him to leave on his own terms.

    Just thoughts for your consideration.

    Thanks for being so authentic!

    1. Great question, and one I don’t really have an answer for. Perhaps others can chime in. Turns out both of our kids had their own set of baggage and were ecstatic about the freedom. Fortunately, we all decided to stop attending at essentially the same time. So I guess we dodged a bullet…

  45. I just got the link to this from a fellow NSP patroller. By chance, or perhaps not, I am watching this the day before your council hearing. Your story is amazing and compelling. You are brave, thoughtful, and truly spiritual people. As you are sitting at the hearing tomorrow, just know – you have already made a difference. I also live in Anchorage and I hope to meet you some day – I’ll buy you both beers.

    1. Thanks John!!!
      Having a party Saturday night! You should come!
      Send me a message via my website and I’ll get you the details!

  46. Jake, I live in your parent’s ward. Your mom is a fabulous person, and one of those ward members who continues to greet me warmly and ask about my family when I happen to run into her in the grocery store. She hasn’t shrunk away at the sight of my evil apostate countenance!
    I thoroughly enjoyed your interview. Thanks for sharing it, and good luck.

  47. Just because it’s silly on such a serious day- (hope this makes you smile a little while your at your court of love-We love you even if they don’t so much)
    People try to put us d-down (Talkin’ ’bout my X-Communication)
    Just because we blog around (Talkin’ ’bout my X-Communication)
    Things they do look awful c-c-cold (Talkin’ ’bout my X-Communication)
    I hope I die before I get sold (Talkin’ ’bout my X-Communication)
    This is my X-Communication
    This is my X-Communication, baby
    Why don’t you all f-fade away (Talkin’ ’bout my X-Communication)
    wish you could try to dig what we all s-s-s-say (Talkin’ ’bout my X-Communication)
    I’m not trying to ’cause a big s-s-sensation (Talkin’ ’bout my X-Communication)
    I’m just talkin’ ’bout my x-x-x-Communication (Talkin’ ’bout my X-Communication)
    My X-Communication
    This is my X-Communication, baby
    Why don’t you all f-fade away (Talkin’ ’bout my X-Communication)
    wish you could try to d-dig what we all s-s-say (Talkin’ ’bout my X-Communication )
    I’m not…

  48. Good luck tonight Jake and Amy. And i mean “good luck” on any of the Leaders/Jurors in the room having anything to say but what the handbook says. They don’t let their own beliefs ever get in the way of what is directed, since this is such a serious spiritual crime you both are committing by being honest with yourselves and standing against what the Church says.

  49. Beautiful people! Amy, every tear you shed brought tears to my eyes because it touches home. My descent from the church was so long and drawn out, but happened for all the same reasons as yours. Ultimately, at age 32 I decided to go to college at BYU so that it would give me the opportunity to choose a side from my awkward fence post. It ended up being my final church history D&C course that changed it all. Many things from that class stand out, but nothing more than the prophet being the only one to receive revelation for the people, and yet the prophet and another developed the three degrees of glory together in a roomful of men. How is that possible, the foundation of everything we were pursuing was based on that doctrine. I quit going to church immediately following my will-deserved graduation. Drank a coffee the very next day. Haven’t looked back except to continue to love and show those who are still members, family, and friends how well I’m doing, and how much I love them , just as Christ taught me to.
    My beautiful thoughts and heartfelt prayers are with you in this undertaking. Your voices are being heard. Maybe not in the room of high council members, but the range of those ripples are greater with this avenue anyway.

  50. I watched your video interview in its entirety. By the end I was in tears because I wish I could have had leaders like you in my early years. Thank you for sharing. You are making a difference. You’ve touched my life, and I feel stronger in my journey of healing from all of the psychological and emotional damage I suffered as a gay person raised in the church.

  51. Thank you Malouf family, including the cute cat. Great podcast! Similar development over here (=Sweden, Europe). More people than you can imagine listen MS podcasts. Thank you also John Delin for being a great host. I will be sharing this podcast with some friends of mine over here as well.
    With kind regards
    Wiktoria Heinz

  52. Amy and Jake:

    as others have said, please don’t feel alone. There is a large community out there that will be here to support you in this, and we are (for the most part) a great group of people. 🙂

  53. I hope your trial ended to your satisfaction (I look fotward to reading an update)! I want to add my support. My parents had their own excommunication trial in 1981. I had a friend who committed suicide as a teen because he couldn’t live up to the church’s standards. Leaving the church opened up a new and much happier life for us based on facts and reality. I wish you well!

  54. Jake and Amy, I listened to this for the first time last night, and REALIZED it was right when you were going to appear at your hearing!! Hope it went well. 🙂 Can’t wait to hear the update about it.

    I am someone who married into a strong LDS family (even though husband is a strong Jack Mormon, thank goodness)…and loved them all to death with a “to each his own” acceptance of their beliefs. They all meant a lot to me. But over the years, it became more and more clear that I was FAR less important to them than I had understood, blinded by own kind love for them.

    i.e. I finally got it that it was more about “being blood” or “being LDS” in this family. Even worse, their LDS-inspired-and-trained apathy and conflict avoidance meant they were never going to do a thing about a few others who were “blood” but who were as negative towards me as it gets for not wanting to play the family game of enabling of their alcoholism and poor life choices. I was forced to move on for my sanity in a similar way you have been forced to do the same. It sure wasn’t easy at first and I had to go through much grief and pain. Mormonism creates very cruel people, and they don’t even realize it in themselves! But we all find that there are better people out there for us. 🙂

  55. I have left the church for the very same reason.My daughter married her girl friend and the child that comes from that union cannot be baptized. I do not agree with the church and will no longer attend.I also reside in Alaska.

  56. Amy & Jake, I love your story. Thank you so much for sharing. It proves that there really are members who leave for valid reasons with genuine intentions. Many people who leave just want to live more authentic lives. Like you, I had a full shelf and plenty of cognitive dissonance for 32 years of faithful service. I ultimately left for doctrinal reasons (I also spent a lot of time doing extensive research/reading). But unlike you, I left quietly (I knew I’d be excommunicated, so I resigned, had my name removed from the records of the church). The difference was that my identity was tied to the church. I literally didn’t know who I was without it. When I went looking for evidence to support my testimony, but found the opposite (that the church wasn’t true), I was completely devistated. I didn’t have the self assurance or strength to stand up to authority like you have. I really admire you both for having the courage I didn’t have.
    Btw, I have since found myself, built a new life, and found out for myself how much love and joy there is outside the church. If I’d know that, I’d have left sooner. The downside is that my 20 year temple marriage did not survive the fallout. While we left the church together, we didn’t know what our marriage was without it because everything had been based on it from the very beginning. The break-up of our family was more painful than leaving the church. But at least our children have the gift we never had: the gift of choice.
    I’ve recently found a new partner/soulmate who happens to be MTF transgender and identifies as lesbian. That’s a whole story in and of itself, but what an amazing and humbling journey! <3

  57. Jake and Amy, Thank you for sharing your story. I love how open you both are, and appreciated the deliberate thought and process behind your journey away from The Church. I believe many will benefit from your story. I resigned many years ago (2000 I think) for some of the same conclusions you came to. I reallt like how you are still able to relate to those that remain steadfast in their faith, even showing incredible empathy for those that will be running your trial. You were both on my mind frequently yesterday and today. I, and I think many others, look forward to hearing what your experience was last night.

  58. An interesting and a compelling story. Oh, the power the brethren have to threaten with disciplinary action because they do not like what is being said about the Church. My vice since the beginning of my fall from grace is sweet iced tea with lemon. I loved it since I was a kid. Then I joined the Church and was told it was bad and I avoided it for years. I’m still a quasi-active member and now a closeted tea drinker. And yes, I do lie about keeping the Word of Wisdom so I can get that entry pass called a recommend which keeps the leaders off my back even though I do not have the desire to go to the temple. I wish I could come out like Jake and Amy but I know my wife will not be on board…at least not yet. So in the mean time, I just have to lay low.

    1. I get it! It’s really hard when there is so much social cost and judgment for drinking something as benign and actually healthy as tea! The flaxen chains of the handbook are strong!

  59. How do you measure truth? I love listening so I can ask myself about what I do believe, but at the end of the day if I continue to believe that the gospel does have truth and this way of life brings me happiness do you still love and respect those that continue to find joy and fullness in the gospel

  60. Best thing that could ever happen to you is this. LDS is so unsure, contrived and controlling, they cannot handle free thought or justification of their theological base. All religions suffer from the designs of MAN. Your spirituality is what will carry you forward. Your moral foundation is based on answering to a higher authority, God.

    Amy, you are an amazing person and have a wonderful family. Your devotion has led you this far, and your compassion carries you beyond what any church could teach. But, don’t worry much; the LDS will find another sucker to take your place, and then tell them what to think.

    1. Soon. We were told that the official verdict is still under review and we should have a letter in the mail by Monday. Look for a follow-up podcast this week!

  61. We received the official outcome of the disciplinary council in the mail yesterday (10/18/16). Look for the follow-up interview today or tomorrow.

  62. Jake and Amy,
    What ended up happening at your disciplinary counsel? I loved your story and related in so many ways. Just let us drink beer and coffee in the mountains and let it be! 😀

    Micaela

    1. Hi Mary,
      A very valid question! I didn’t want to resign yet, I probably would have soon, though. I would like to exercise my agency as to when, and if I resign. Also, because I think it is barbaric I choose to go through with the council partly to shine a light on the fact that the LDS church chooses the most extreme form of discipline for those that won’t be quiet or go away. We go into more detail in the followup podcast!

  63. I believe that everyone has doubts at some point before, during and after conversion. When I had my doubts my Brother in-law (a highly educated Doctor of Gastroenterology who was also a former High Council Member and a current Gospel Doctrine Teacher) suggested a book for me to read… “Shaken Faith Syndrome” written by Michael R. Ash… I also had a couple of very real dreams around this time period that helped me deal with my concerns and fears. Today, I have no doubts about the truthfulness of the church and I rest much easier because of it. I would recommend the book to anyone that is experiencing doubts… I would also recommend to anyone that is struggling with the doctrine to reread the Book of Mormon and take your questions directly to the Lord in personal Prayer. The book of James makes it very clear that he will answer anyone who has questions if you will bring them to him in prayer (one on one) with real intent and with a humble and contrite spirit.

    I love the Lord God, his son Jesus Christ who died for all of us that we may have a pathway back to the father if we truly repent of our sins and do our very best to live our lives the best way that we know how… Our time on this earth is but a smidgen in eternity but it is critical from the stand point that we must prove ourselves and our faith in him. It’s really just a question of whether or not we are up to the challenge.

    I’m sorry that you have had to feel the real pain of conversion… I hope that one day in this life you will be able to come to terms with the truth.

  64. Dear Paul,

    Thank you for your comments. “Shaken Faith Syndrome” sounds interesting. I had not yet heard of the book.

    This video is required-watching for those of us who have based our faith on receiving a witness from the Holy Ghost in answer to prayer.

  65. Thanks for the thoughtful comment Paul. I suggest you listen to the entire 3 hour interview and then reach out to me if you want. You asked if we were up to the challenge: Yes. Unequivocally. Are you up for the challenge to expand your research and studies?

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