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The resignation of Bob McCue
as a bishop of The LDS Church

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On 2004-MAY-30, the Calgary Herald newspaper in Alberta, Canada published an article about Bob McCue, (1958-) a former bishop of the LDS (Mormon) church. 1,2 McCue is a tax lawyer in Calgary. His Mormon ancestors helped settle southern Alberta. He had a great-grandmother who was the fourth polygamous wife of a William Paxman, a high-ranking church leader in Utah. Although he was rich, she died in poverty after her husband's death, because his first wife refused to share his estate.

McCue served as bishop for a local ward for five years. He became distressed after a study of Mormon history. He developed a number of concerns. In his opinion:

bullet The senior Mormon leadership had misled him about the origins of Mormonism, "and thence what it was." The Church has suppressed many events in its history. Only versions of Church history which are "faith promoting" are taught. Leaders, from the founder Joseph Smith onwards, intentionally deceived both their membership and the public in important matters.
bullet He was forbidden to speak about any of the deceptions that he had found, outside of his immediate family.
bullet He found Mormon teachings inferior to those of other religions and to scientific findings.
bullet Mormon teachings are liable to impair the intellect of young people.

He found that a book by James Fowler helpful in understanding his spiritual journey. It describes six stages of spirituality that some people can experience. Fowler describes a follower's belief during the third stage as: "my faith is the best or only true faith." In the fourth stage, which most people do not attain, the individual realizes that many aspects of their faith do not agree with reality. They often reappraise their beliefs and sometimes reject their faith group. 3

He has concluded:

"...that once the evidence is considered, it is highly probable that most of Mormonism's foundational claims are false and that Mormon leaders have given and continue to give bad advice in many respects. But I remain open to the possibility that I am wrong..."

Having been frustrated by what he felt was the 'stifling' reaction of denominational leaders, he resigned as bishop in 2002-DEC. He stated in his resignation letter:

"I deeply regret that the church's position respecting freedom of speech and the suppression of intellectual inquiry has reached its current low ebb."

Since breaking with the LDS church, he has conducted a study of ex-Mormon members on the Internet. He has tentatively concluded that people who exhibit certain of the Meyers-Briggs personality types [I (introverted), N (intuitive), T (thinking)] are more liable to question their faith. 4

He has established a web site to help others through the process of leaving the LDS church. He participates in a number of post-Mormon bulletin boards and carries on an extensive exchange of information via E-mail. 5 He writes:

"The single most common comment I have received from people who have read material on my website is that I have put into words what they have felt, but could not quite articulate."

He concludes:

bullet "Mormonism's highest leaders demand, receive, and violate, the almost complete trust of faithful Mormons."
bullet "Mormon leaders promise put their followers' interests first, but instead often protect the LDS Church and so harm those who have trusted them."

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References:

  1. David Hedley, "Leaving the fold: Former Mormon bishop walks away from the faith of his ancestors in protest of church leaders 'stifling' his freedom to ask troubling historic questions," Calgary Herald, 2004-MAY-30, at: http://www.canada.com/
  2. Bob McCue, "Calgary Herald Interview - May 30, 2004; 'Uncut' version," at: http://mccue.cc/ This appears to be a broken link. However, there is a great deal of McCue's writing at http://mccue.cc/bob/ that contains similar material.
  3. James Fowler, "Stages of Faith : The Psychology of Human Development," Harper SanFrancisco, (1995). Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store."
  4. "MeyersBriggs.org," at: http://www.myersbriggs.org/
  5. "bob mccue's website" is at: http://mccue.cc/

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Copyright 2004 to 2006 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Originally written: 2004-JUN-1
Latest update: 2006-NOV-12
Author: B.A. Robinson

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