It’s 1973, I’m 15 years old, it’s mutual night, we’re playing basketball in the cultural hall. I’m thirsty so I walk out into the foyer to get a drink from the fountain and standing there is a young woman in my ward, a year or two older than me who normally didn’t say more than “hi” or “bye” to me, looking like she’d seen a ghost, staring at me.
She had just come out of a bishop interview. I asked her if something was wrong because she clearly looked shaken. She responded, “the bishop just asked me if I masturbate.” I didn’t know what to say, I stood there frozen. She then asked me if he’d ever asked me that? I said, no. She then said, “That’s so weird, why would he ask me that?” Again, all I could do is stand there.
“Do you think he’s getting off asking me that?” All I could do was mutter something like “no of course not, he’s the bishop.“
A few years later she left the church. Oh yeah, I almost forgot -the bishop who asked her that is in the point of the mountain prison in Utah for the rest of his life because as it came out a few years ago, he is a child molester. He had been molesting young girls for more than 50 years before his own granddaughters turned him in. The 50 year plus period covers the time during which he served as my bishop and yes, when he asked the aforementioned young woman the creepy questions.
Needless to say, not all bishops are child molesters, but as in the case of my old bishop, some are and allowing even one of them unfettered access to minors to ask weird questions, to groom them, is self-evidently, galacticly stupid and indefensible. History will not judge well the Mormon church for continuing these unnecessary and effing weird practices.