Dear scripture committee members,
Despite everyone’s best efforts, there is still disagreement about which statement of principles (guide and standard) should be adopted. Here is a proposal we believe can resolve the deadlock. Please take a moment to read our proposal, and if the committee can support this approach, would you please promise to publish whichever statement of principles the body of believers chooses using this process. The Phoenix conference organizers have agreed to give us time at the conference to conduct parts two and three of this vote.
1-Starting immediately, anyone who wishes to have their statement of principles (guide and standard) considered for inclusion in the new scriptures can submit their document to guideandstandard.blogspot.com.
Then, during the week prior to the Phoenix conference ( ), we will hold an online vote by covenant holders. People will be able to vote for any or all of the statements of principles that were submitted, and that they believe fill the Lord’s requirements. Voters will be asked to rank their preferences.
2-Then, at the conference on , we will announce the results of the online voting. And at that time, in a second vote, we will ask those who preferred a statement of principles other than the top vote getter to vote to either accept the majority’s decision or to reject the majority’s decision. If this second vote does not produce broad agreement with the majority, the issue will be tabled until the next conference.
If there is broad agreement with the majority, but there are some who remain opposed, then they will be invited to get together after the meeting with a delegate (or delegates) of those who brought this issue to the conference for consideration. The purpose of the meeting will be to listen to their reason(s) for opposition and discuss whether they would be willing to unite, despite their misgivings, with all the others who supported the proposition.
3-Then, if they are opposed still, we will announcethat there remain three (or however many) opposed to the proposition that has otherwise carried by the nearly unanimous consent of the conference, and ask the conference if as a body they are willing to proceed/adopt the chosen statement of principles despite the opposition by three (or however many). If this carries by a clear majority vote of the conference, then it is adopted, and the chosen statement will be added to the scriptures.
4-Once adopted, the three (or however many) will be contacted and asked again if they will accept the outcome of the vote of the conference.
Since the conference adopted the proposition, the continued opposition of a few will not stop the inclusion of the statement of principles in the new scriptures. But the position of the few will have been respected and noted, and they can proceed with the full knowledge that they were listened to, their opposition heard, their vote acknowledged, but the conference adopted the proposition, and now they need to determine whether they will yield. They may not at first, but with time, and love, and fellowship, they may ultimately accept the outcome anyway.
Reasonable people can differ regarding the merits of the various statements of principles and the processes that produced them. But it is necessary, ultimately, to lay those differences to one side. The content of the statement is less important than the content of our hearts. Our commitment to unity needs to be greater than our devotion to any particular version of the guide and standard. The approach outlined above uses persuasion and love to achieve unity, allows everyone to exercise their agency as they think best, but asks each of us to be accountable for our choices. This approach balances the interests of all concerned, and provides a way to move beyond the current impasse.
Donald and Christy Danner,