April 12, 2021
The following is a report compiled through discussion and discernment of the council of Elders consisting of Alexei Mattanovich, Victoria Ramirez, and our guest participant Lorianne Fisher. These matters are submitted for the benefit of the Fellowship, and to aid in the various quorums of leadership with the performance of their tasks.
We, the above, have been given various leadership tasks, as well as the general directive to become a home for the spiritually homeless. We also convene and make this report in a time of reflection and the general sense of the need for increased clarity on what our individual and common goals are, and how to best live according to the principle of invitation to universal fellowship in Christ. The following items have been discussed and we submit our observations and/or recommendations.
ITEM #1 FELLOWSHIP IDENTITY
We are contemplating whether the Church of Jesus Christ in Christian Fellowship, The School of the Prophets, Latter Day Saint Universalist Ministries and the Home for the spiritually homeless are all the same or separate overlapping entities, and if better and clearer designations should be put in place. See Appendix A.
We must get clear on what we are, and we must be able to convey to others what we are in order to successfully invite participation, otherwise we are not building anything larger than ourselves. It appears that we are multiple things, without being fully committed to any of them. We are seeking to: A, Create a church community after the pattern revealed in the Book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants. B, Advance new doctrine, theology and newly revealed Word of God. C, Create an ecumenical fellowship of believers from different backgrounds. D, Be a home for the spiritually homeless. And there may be other things in addition to these that may be equally at odds or ill defined.
How can we be a universal or ecumenical fellowship by revealing new peculiar doctrines, which defines a cult in the public consciousness? How can we fill out a hierarchy of priesthood while seeking to engage and fellowship with those who do not recognize or wish to be a part of any such hierarchy?
First Presidency Response
May 4, 2021
“It is a duty which every Saint ought to render to his brethren freely—to always love them, and ever succor them. To be justified before God we must love one another: we must overcome evil; we must visit the fatherless and the widow in their affliction, and we must keep ourselves unspotted from the world: for such virtues flow from the great fountain of pure religion, strengthening our faith by adding every good quality that adorns the children of the blessed Jesus, we can pray in the season of prayer; we can love our neighbor as ourselves, and be faithful in tribulation, knowing that the reward of such is greater in the kingdom of heaven. What a consolation! What a joy! Let me live the life of the righteous, and let my reward be like his!” -Joseph Smith Jr. Letter the Saints Scattered Abroad June 1835
Before getting into the report sent to the First Presidency, we first wish to say that the Church of Jesus Christ in Christian Fellowship is not for everyone. No one should feel forced to remain a part of a group they are not aligned with. After reading the report, David took this matter to the Lord and received a revelation to know God’s will in these matters. That revelation is at the conclusion of our response, and has been added to Doctrines of the Saints as Section 125.
The Church of Jesus Christ in Christian Fellowship is both a body of Christ and a unity movement. The School of the Prophets is an arm of the Fellowship of Christ. LDSU (LDSU.org), LDCM (ldcministries.org), and other groups affiliated with the Fellowship are just that, ministries affiliated with the Fellowship. The spiritually homeless are the lost sheep we have been called to seek out.