It was almost time to end my stay at the MTC. I was excited to finally awake from the Orwellian nightmare that I had been trapped in for the last two months. The field was going to be much, much better. I mean everyone keeps saying "the best two years of my life," so if the MTC was whale diarrhea sprayed right into my sinuses, then the field was going to be great.
Two nights before we were going to be bussed to the airport, our district was taken to a different classroom than we had normally been in. A teacher that we had never had before said that we were going to be taking a test. He explained that "the Brethren" had decided that in spite of the endless classes about doctrine, most Elders came out of the MTC still incredibly ignorant of "gospel fundamentals." This test would would gauge just how ignorant we still were.
However, we were the first group to have this test administered, and the teacher was asking for our feedback. He explained that if there were questions that seemed confusing, or any other comments about the test, to use the paper attached to write down what he had problems with and why.
Ok. Simple enough.
Most of the test was pretty straightforward multiple choice questions about Mormon doctrine.
1. Which angel appeared to Joseph Smith to get the Golden Plates:
d. None of the above, he made the whole thing up
2. God loves:
b. Your teddy bear "Snuggle Time McHappyfur"
c. White people only
d. Also just made up
However, some of the questions I had philosophical differences with. After the Final Final Judgment and not just one of the previous Judgments Christ renders upon your sinful ass, Mormon doctrine has you going to one of "three degrees of glory." Not just Heaven and Hell like the merciful Xtian god where dead babies who have never heard of Christ's name burn in a lake of fire for all of eternity, or that people who have heard of Christ but commit finite "sins" are punished eternally for them. You know, infinite mercy means infinite punishment for dead babies and heathens. No, Mormon Doctrine has a system where how good you are and how much you give your life to the "Gospel" slides you on a scale for a reward.
The lowest level is the Telestial Kingdom. This is basically earth forever, and the naughtiest of people go here like Hitler, Stalin, and Ann Coulter.
The second level is the Terrestrial Kingdom. This place is like the Xtian heaven I guess. Cool shit for mostly cool people. The majority of the world will end up here, according to Mormonism because most people are decent, they just don't want to be Mormons.
The highest level is the Celestial Kingdom. This is where you get to be with your family members forever and keep having more families, and if you are super duper cool, you get to be a god in your own Universe. You must not only be Mormon to get here, but you must be a very devout and faithful Mormon. You have to submit fully to god's will in order to become just like god. And god's will is that you be Mormon and do everything the Mormon leaders tell you to do. P.S. Dead babies get to go here automatically. The rest of the family may not make it, but "oh well." Since when has god's plan ever been about what YOU want?
(There's another place where people who have had the truth and rejected it go. That's Outer Darkness - more horrible than hell. One interpretation is that only people like Cain (who actually saw god) will go there. Other Mormons interpret this as a place for Mormon apostates.)
The questions that were posed didn't deal with the descriptions of the Kingdoms as I've bored you with. Instead they were short paragraph scenarios of actual people, and we were supposed to judge them for eternity and place them in the proper Kingdom.
1. Shakwonda is a nice person who serves her community and loves Jesus. However, she refused to accept the True Gospel of Jesus Christ in her life. What Kingdom will she go to:
2. Gaylord and Krycestahl are Mormons, but they often go boating on Sundays instead of going to church, and they occasionally drink alcohol. What Kingdom will they go to:
So, I had some problems with these questions. I was uncomfortable with the concept of judging people forever from a few sentences. At the end of the test, I wrote about these questions and why. It took some time to write out because I wanted to be clear about the specific questions I had problems with, why I did, and what I felt was an alternative. Everyone else was done because I was the only one with feedback.
We went back to our dorms, and I walked into an "intervention." Apparently, my feedback that no one else in my district had read was interpreted as me "speaking ill of the lord's anointed" because the test was written by the Prophet and Apostles - is what they said. I didn't remember that part. So, according to my District, I had just shit all over the highest leadership of the church. "Speaking ill of the lord's anointed" is one of the gravest social sins you can commit in Mormonism. And my District was there to call me to repentance.
Not everyone in my District participated in this "come to Jesus," led by Elder Fuckwit, but those that did listed off everything that was wrong with me, and everything that I needed to do to change my thinking in order to be a "good servant of god's church."
Pride comes before the fall.