Monday, July 13, 2009

Seminary Principal Arrested

I am heartsick about the seminary principal in Utah County who developed a sexual relationship with one of his students. In fact I feel like punching his headlights out. He's caused great pain to the entire Church Education Program.

I used to think that the CES was kind of overreacting when they began to forbid hugging students, especially at graduations, emailing students and any displays of affection between adult leaders. This included Priesthood leaders.

This is really a difficult thing because a special bond does develop between a seminary teacher and his or her students. We were advised to not counsel with students about their personal problems but to refer them onto Priesthood leaders. Wise counsel, but sometimes immediate needs were not met. We were advised not to talk to students in our offices with the doors closed and also, all office doors for teachers had windows in them to forstall problems. This I understood. Now text messaging, which didn't exist when I was a seminary teacher, undoubtedly will be off the table for teachers even to the extent of having addresses and phone numbers for group announcements perhaps.

I know for most it's unbelievable because most, meaning the men that I worked with, would never have gotten themselves into this mess. But It's happened once and we must shut our feelings down even more just in case it might happen again, even though we have hundreds and hundreds of teachers who wouldn't think of even taking that first step into forbidden territory.

It's too bad because children need adult help. And seminary teachers really are as good a possibility for this as anyone. But circumstances are such that this aid is no longer even hinted at. I hope no one maintains any long-term hurt from this but it's a pity that any long-term help is not longer there either.


Annie said...

what a sad situation for everyone involved directly and indirectly.

Rosie said...

You were a life saver for me during my high school years, Linda! How many times did you drive me home and sit out there talking me through my troubles? It really is sad that one person can ruin it for everyone else.