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Question

Gramps,

My brother had some unresolved sins before he went on his mission and as a result ended up getting sent home when he confessed to his mission president during his first transfer. While he was home he met with the bishop and the stake president on a regular basis.  About eight months later they cleared him to go back on his mission but he decided not to go. It’s now been 18 months since he came home, and during that time he started dating a non-member girl. Now they are talking about getting married later this year. My brother says that she will get baptized and they will eventually get sealed in the temple, but I doubt that will ever occur because she and her family are very Catholic. My fear is that they will lure my brother into complete inactivity in the Church. My parents have taken a very passive role because they say that if they push he’ll just push away harder. What is the best advice to give my brother?

Ryan

 

Answer

Ryan,

My advice to you is to wait for your brother to ask for advice.

He’s more than likely very aware of what challenges he’s taking on. For instance, even though he has been cleared to return to the mission field, perhaps he felt it best to let that part of his life be what it is and move on. He’s not the first, nor will he be the last to experience such challenges in this way.

The same can be said for his marriage situation. In the end there are no specific standards that say one “must” marry a member of the Church. It is recommended of course, but there are countless examples of part-member families becoming whole and sealed units according to God’s will.

What I’m getting at is this; your brother is walking the path of life he has chosen. No, it isn’t the ‘by the book’ process that is available to us, but then Ryan, that’s how life works. We have our agency to choose the path we wish to take. What we cannot choose is the end of that path, or the consequences of that choice.

As it is now, I can see why there is concern for your brother, but take heart and know that God is mindful of him, just as much as all the rest of his children. Yes there is a risk of your brother leaving the church. That has happened plenty of times as well. However those are the possibilities that he faces due to the choices he has made.

Stand as an example

At this point, your best move is to stand as an example of your testimony. Live what you believe and know to be true. Avoid arrogance and hypocricy, remain humble and submissive to the mind and will of God as you continue to pray for guidance.

The Lord will not mislead you, nor jeapordize your family in any way. As you live in faith, you might just be the example your brother’s fiancee needs to see in order to successfully join the Church.

Whatever happens will happen, Ryan, and you have no need to feel accountable in any way. Be there for your brother no matter what. You’ll see the promises of God fulfilled in front of your eyes as you do.

Gramps

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