Protecting the Flock

Jesus with the Little Children

As our family read from Romans this week, I was struck by two verses which differentiate between those who are struggling with faith they wish to retain and those who are actively attempting to destroy faith.

Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations….

Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.

For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ…,

Romans 14:1, 16:17-18

There are those who tear down with words. Then there are those who destroy in more disturbing ways.

The Church has launched training, which is mandatory for those who minister to children and youth. This training can be accessed at

All may take the training, which becomes part of one’s Church “training jacket.” The training must be re-taken every three years to maintain eligibility to minister to children. As all become trained, we will be better able to detect and prevent inappropriate behavior.

Paul’s counsel to the Romans was to help them understand the difference between earnest questions and calculated attacks, counsel we do well to consider in our day.

The Church training on protecting children and youth is to avoid those instances of inappropriate behavior which so harm children of God and further provoke those wanting to condemn God and His people.

Let us so live that we are fully acceptable to God and those who are His, no matter how those in the great and spacious building might mock and jeer.

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About Meg Stout

Meg Stout has been an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ (of Latter-day Saints) for decades. She lives in the DC area with her husband, Bryan, and several daughters. She is an engineer by vocation and a writer by avocation. Meg is the author of Reluctant Polygamist, laying out the possibility that Joseph taught the acceptability of plural marriage but that Emma was right to assert she had been Joseph's only true wife.

3 thoughts on “Protecting the Flock

  1. Of note, folks currently ministering to children and youth are required to complete the training by September 22, 2019. This includes all leaders at the stake/district and ward/branch level, leaders of all organizations that minister to children, youth, or their parents, and all who interact with children and youth (e.g., music leaders and pianists).

  2. Thank you Meg. As usual, it was sad to see reports–and TV ads for lawyers–claiming that the Church tolerates and/or hides abuse on a wide scale. It (The Church, striving to become the Kingdom of God on earth) does not look upon sin, especially serious sin, with the least degree of allowance.
    I have not been in leadership positions, but I do believe that the system works. The system I am referring to is simply called the Gospel. Church discipline councils, disfellowship, excommunication, repentance, and love are parts of the Great Plan, although the first three in the list involve sins that are to be avoided and can be avoided through obedience to simple commandments. Simple to understand, at least.
    It is ironic that a Church which is often derided as “old-fashioned”, out of step with the times for the very reason that it disfellowships or excommunicates members for serious sexual transgressions, is now accused of looking the other way…
    Agree or disagree with the author of the expression “Drive-by Media”, but it applies here.
    I am sure mistakes were made. People make mistakes. Bishops too. We empathize with the victims and pray for healing and, where appropriate, legal consequences. Do I care if a Stake President or Bishop gets in trouble with the law for breaking the law? No, not in the sense that there should be consequences for everyone breaking the law or hurting children or failing to report abuse. Training is great.
    How can a Church that claims that “We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law” be accused of widespread, systematic violations of the law? That is at least implied in the commercials. We did not conveniently come up with the 12th Article of Faith just last month.
    The truth of God will go forth boldly, nobly, and independent…

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