Monday, May 2, 2011

The Setting Apart-ening.

The night before entering the Missionary Training Center, I went to visit the Stake President as was standard procedure.  When a man receives the Melchizedek Priesthood in Mormonism, he is ordained as an Elder.  However, this isn't quite the same thing as being an "Elder" when you become a missionary.  I'm too lazy to look up why that is, probably something to do with protection from status ailments like "fear," "dark," "staggered" or some stupid shit.  Oh wait, it's because being a missionary is a very particular "calling" and because of this, you are "set apart" by another priesthood holder who is spiritually superior to you - the Stake President.

Being "set apart" means that you sit in a chair and the Stake President stands behind you and then places his hands upon your head.  Other Melchizedek priesthood holders are allowed to also place their hands upon your head to join in the fun, but the Stake President is the one to "set you apart."  He prayed to Heavenly Father and left a message on the machine letting him know that I was now a missionary for his church and I was so by the power of Greyskull, er, the Melchizedek Priesthood, and in the name of Jesus "Hol(e)y Hands" Christ.

God screens his phone calls and sometimes a "setting apart" is simply that, but other times god picks up the line to let you know through the Priesthood holder's mouth that he loves you and he's very proud of you, but he doesn't have time to talk to you directly.  He's got to go.  Netflix just uploaded a lot of new shit to the instant view.

As soon as I was done being set apart as a missionary, I was considered a missionary and had to start obeying the mission rules.  The first of which was that I no longer had a first name anymore.  I wasn't Raptor Jesus, I was Elder Jesus and would remain as such until I was "released" from my missionary calling.  I was to call myself Elder Jesus, and instruct others to call me that too.  There were quite a few other rules that I was supposed to obey now including that I was forbidden to watch television or play on the computer.  The Stake President gave me a copy of the mission rules that come in a little white handbook and is sometimes referred to as the "white bible."  It contained all of the rules that I was supposed to obey for the next two years, and I was supposed to keep it on me at all times possible.

I won't share everything in the "white bible" because that would be boring, but I will give the highlights.  As well as not having a true personal identity anymore, missionaries are expected to obey the following:

Never be alone.  Always be with your companion - and this companion will always be chosen for you.

Look, and dress a certain way.

Only read Church sanctioned materials.  Nothing else.  Study these daily.

After leaving the MTC, you can only talk to your family through weekly letters.  Phone calls are only allowed on Christmas and Mother's Day.

Obey every other directive of your spiritual superiors.

Follow all the guidelines about what you are supposed to do each day (i.e. wake up at 6:30am every morning, scripture study for 2 hours, proselytize for 10 hours, be back in the apartment at 9:30pm, be in bed by 10:30) rinse and repeat.

At this point the reader (that means YOU!) is probably saying, "Wait a minute, Raptor Jesus, that sounds like a cult."

Well, first of all, what the fuck did I just say?  I'm a missionary now so it's ELDER JESUS.  And second of all, this is the only true church on the earth, and missionaries are going out to spread the word that people can only be truly saved by joining this church and giving this church their money.  Now, does that still sound like a cult to you?

Yes?  Well, they're right and your wrong because it's god's church.  Don't you fucking dare criticize that otherwise you'll be criticizing god.  And god will rape your face with flesh eating worms.

Now that you've stopped fucking interrupting me, let's move on with story time.

I was a missionary, and tomorrow would be the first day in the MTC.  I went home, didn't watch television, checked my packed bags again to make sure I didn't forget anything and stared up into the darkness for most of the night.

Two fucking years.


  1. I watched Fraiser for three hours after being set apart. You can take my pretentious sibling rivalry from my cold dead hands.

  2. You gave me anxiety just by reading this!

    I had told myself, begrudgingly, that if I wasn't married by the time I was 21 I would serve a mish. Luckily I married at 19... I knew I could never commit to 18 months of nothing but complete obedience and jumpers with nylons.

  3. I'm so glad I didn't have to go through that! I joined the cult when I was 22, and was always given a hard time for not serving a mission. I basically told everyone who gave me a hard time to shove it up their ass.

  4. Was the title "the setting apartening" taken from a reference in a recent movie? Maybe one with Padme aMadalla in it by chance?