The LDS First Presidency issued one of its rare public statements this week, discouraging members from circulating notes taken at a church regional or stake conference without the consent of the speaker.
The statement was read over the pulpit Sunday in Mormon congregations, leaving many members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints wondering what prompted it.
Some believe it was a response to the widespread Internet distribution of comments reportedly made by Apostle L. Tom Perry on March 21 at an LDS stake conference in Kuna, Idaho.
In his remarks, Perry tells of his colleagues in the Quorum of the Twelve, describing M. Russell Ballard, for example, as “our used car salesman” and Richard Scott as “a computer genius . . . who helps us all keep our computers right.”
He talks about the importance of the quorum’s “seniority order.”
“I would never think of going through a door before Elder [Boyd K.] Packer. He is the President of our Council,” Perry allegedly said.
He goes on to say: “Every week the Cummings Chocolate people send us a 3 lb. box of chocolates. In our meeting, we follow our order and President Packer picks first, then I choose, and so on. Poor Elder Eyring has never had a light chocolate yet.”
About a month after the Perry speech began circulating, the LDS Church Education System sent out a memo to all its administrators and teachers, saying that the remarks “do not accurately reflect his comments” and that Church Education System employees should not use or refer to them in class, spread or refer to them in any way, and to “delete or destroy them.”
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