Hurricane Harvey–Father Denied Access to Missionary Son


I am so disappointed in the church.  The leaders say obedience is the first law of heaven.  Then they openly disobey and lead the members to follow them in disobedience.  Bible and Book of Mormon history is playing out all over again in these latter-days.

As a big part of the restoration, Christ detailed important commandments for the governance of the church.  Perhaps the most plain and prominant is the Law of Common Consent.  Scriptural, doctrinal and prophetic descriptions can be found HERE.

A Slap in the Face of a Hurricane

Today, I became aware of a situation in my home town of Houston, Texas.  It involves a father, John O’Conner, and his full time missionary son.

Friday night, around 10pm, the massive hurricane Harvey struck the Texas coast.  With all its Category 4 fury.  Dire predictions of catastrophic damage have been a constant drumbeat all over the news.  The National Weather Service has bombarded our cell phones with incessant tornado and flash flood warnings.  This situation can be scarey…even to hurricane veterans.  Especially, when Catetory 4 and tornado are in the same sentence as the word hurricane.

Twelve hours before landfall, this dad contacted the mission president, asking for his son’s phone number.  To me, the ensuing email thread is disturbing.  As you’ll see, it was highly distressing to the dad.  You can read through it HERE.

I don’t know exactly why John wanted so badly to contact his son.  I can only spectulate.  But, it shouldn’t matter.  This is the head of the family.  Aren’t we a family church?  At least, we used to be.

Just so you know, Mr. O’Conner gave his consent to have this email exchange published.  Here is what he had to say:

I’m for complete transparency.  Please share. My goal at this point is to expose the policy as a dangerous one that isolates parents from their children during stressful and dangerous times. The policy is at fault and needs discussion. The MP’s insistence on it at this time is inappropriate, stress-inducing, and incredibly inconsiderate and irresponsible.

I agree with John.  Transparency in the church it terribly lacking and desperately needed.   I also want to commend this dad for being willing to stand up for his family and for other families that will be affected by this policy in the future.  A good father and a courageous man.

Elder Holland

In last April’s General Conference, Elder Holland gave a beautiful & impassioned plea for “each one of us to stay permanently and faithfully in the choir (the church).”  And then this caveat:  “In short, there is a place for everyone who loves God and honors His commandments.”

So, if we don’t honor His commandments is there no place for us in the choir?  Let that sink in.  Most everybody is dishonoring Jesus Christ’s sacred law of consent.  Maybe it’s time to make a decision.  You either want no part of common consent and you ought to leave.  Or you are ready to take on the right and obligation that the restored gospel places squarely on your shoulders and you start to vote.

John O’Conner found himself facing a troubling policy that has NEVER seen the light of common consent.  PUT….IT….UP….FOR….A….VOTE.  Something like this, “It is proposed that at times of catastophic disaster, parents are to have no contact whatsoever with their children on missions.”  Really?  Who is going to vote for a policy like that?

This dreadful policy doesn’t have John’s consent.  It doesn’t have my consent.  It doesn’t have anybody’s formal consent as mandated by Jesus Christ.