Home » Mormonism » Thomas S. Monson releases statement on Syria, renounces war

Thomas S. Monson releases statement on Syria, renounces war

LOL just kidding.

As of today, as Pope Francis organized a worldwide fast for peace, and a week after numerous statements by various Orthodox churches stating unequivocally the suffering that is happening and will happen if the US goes charging in militarily to Syria, as far as I know we still have radio silence on the issue from Salt Lake.

I can be pretty balanced on a lot of things (in my opinion) but not war.  As someone who is still on the records of the LDS church, I am incredibly frustrated that the General Authorities aren’t on the front lines out there, asking our people to fast, to donate to various humanitarian relief efforts in the Middle East, to proclaim a message of peace, etc.

I suppose they just assume we’ve all been taught correct principles and can therefore govern ourselves (or that general anti-war sentiments can be found in the Scriptures and we have those so we don’t need to keep talking about it), but it’s still quite frustrating to see the LDS Newsroom touting a James Taylor Concert and the release of the Joseph Smith Papers, both extremely awesome events, don’t get me wrong, but not a word on Syria – where millions of Christians are being killed, persecuted, oppressed, and displaced (as well as good Muslim men, women, and children too).  Centuries-old churches are being burned.  People are being tortured, shot, executed, raped.

If the prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah, Jonah, Obadiah, Micah, etc. weren’t afraid of prophesying specifically about the wars that would come, and what the righteous should do to avoid the coming disasters, is it too much to expect something a bit more direct regarding actual wars we’re about to engage in?  Even just to say that the war is justified or not?

Maybe something is forthcoming.  But I am not going to hold my breath.  If it’s anything like President Hinckley’s talk before the US invaded Iraq, it will likely be somewhat vague and ask us all to come to our own conclusions.  But it seems to me – and I admit I’m probably letting my emotions get pretty carried away at this point – a really useful prophet would have said in 2001, “This war will ruin us.  It is unjustified.  Tell your neighbors – make fliers – warn your families.  Preach peace.  Pray for it.  Fast for it.  Don’t give up until the Lord comes.”  And to be honest, I feel like a really useful prophet would be saying that now, too.

I ask for forgiveness for anyone who might be offended by this post.  My attitude toward war causes me to get very emotional about the topic.  This is one good thing about posting under a pseudonym on an obscure blog that not too many people read, but if I have offended any of my fellow LDS (or anyone else) I ask for your forgiveness now – I am the chief among sinners.

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4 thoughts on “Thomas S. Monson releases statement on Syria, renounces war

  1. I had the same thing in mind when I was searching the web about the Prophet’s word about this issue and I found yours instead. But, as you’ve mentioned, “Maybe something is forthcoming.” We just probably have to prepare for whatever we’re going to hear when, at last, the Prophet speaks the Lord’s mind for His people.

  2. I very much appreciate your comments. You had me on the headline, though – I read this is a RSS reader and did a double-take as I scanned the articles in my feed :)

    I’m an active LDS member and not at all offended. Unfortunately, as much as I agree with what you have to say, I suspect that we are both in the minority.

  3. Excellent post! You are right on, in my opinion. You may be lucky if TSM says something in General Conference next month. Recent LDS prophets have not stood for much. They did stand for prop 8 but when that backfired, they are no where to be found with regards to traditional marriage. Even when Hinckley was asked if he was a prophet, he only said that he was ‘sustained as such’. (Please forgive me, I don’t remember who was the interviewer. Mike Wallace or Larry King?) How’s that for standing for something? I am not a prophet, but I can guess that General Conference next month will consist of the same recycled talks. In the OT, prophets were rarely the actual church leaders at the time (i.e., temple priests). I understand your frustrations. If Thomas Monson is a prophet to the world, he should at least have something to say regarding big international issues that concern the world.

  4. In defense of President Monson, I would prefer he say nothing. I am active duty US military, and have spent my adult life involved in the Middle East in some way, either academically, or professionally, and I have mixed feelings about intervention in Syria. I know many of the Muslims there, and I think they are wonderful people who I love dearly. I know many of the Christians there, and I think they too are wonderful and love them dearly. There is much more going on than most realize. The world is complicated, and there are no good answers here, so what should President Monson say?

    It is not my call, either, so I keep my opinions to myself (I think those pictures of people in uniform with statements over their faces are an embarrassment, ours is to execute, not politic), but there is no wrong or right in Syria, and nothing President Monson could say would help clarify what is already too murky at best. War is bad? It is, but also sometimes necessary. When it is necessary? That is difficult to say as well. Christ purposefully avoided the Roman/Judaic conflict, so I am not sure where President Monson should weigh in.

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