Sam Young discovered that his children had been asked sexually explicit questions by Bishops in worthiness interviews. This troubled him and he discovered that it is commonplace among Mormon Bishops to ask these questions, which lead to real harm. He advocated for protecting children from this harm and campaigned for church leaders to stop the practice. Rather than listening to him, the church disciplined him for causing trouble and excommunicated him for his efforts. He has since learned the church isn’t true and is glad his belief in it is behind him. Since his excommunication, the church released a policy where children may be interviewed with their parents or another adult if they wish. Sam Young is a modern-day hero!
I served a mission to Guatemala and El Salvador. Married in the temple. Raised 6 children in the church. Have actively served in many callings. Served as Bishop. Until I was excommunicated, I was a Mormon.
I found out that my daughter, when she was 12 years old, was asked sexually explicit questions behind the closed doors of a bishop. This introduced her to pornography, and introduced her to masturbation. I had no idea this happened until 10 years after she left the young women’s program.
That got me very upset to hear this was done to my child! Then I found out it happened to three more but my children. So four out of my six children were asked sexual explicit questions behind a closed door. I knew, everybody in the world knows that’s wrong, dead wrong, except members of our church. I believe that the Apostles even know that it’s dead wrong.
I launched a crusade to get this changed in our church. I was very naive I thought it would be an easy change to make. I subsequently found out that this has happened to countless people. It’s a very very common practice in our church to ask sexually explicit questions and it’s mandated you take kids behind closed doors.
I collected thousands of stories of people (as adults) who were harmed while they were kids and anywhere from suicide to physical sexual abuse and then to psychological sexual abuse and there are just all kinds of horrible consequences that have come out of these interviews. To raise awareness these interviews and stories are all shared at protectldschildren.org.
I was told by my local leaders to walk away from the cause. But I did not, to bring attention to this point, I staged a hunger strike for 23 days with no response from church leadership. After a series of events, I was disciplined by the church and then excommunicated from the church for speaking out against church policy and leaders, which made me an apostate. The disciplinary council often mentioned protecting the good name of the church, but I was more concerned with protecting children.
Since being excommunicated, I’m no longer a member of the church. I’ve found out so many other issues with the church and I can honestly say I’m happier now than I was when I was all in.Sam
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