Elder Jeffrey R. Holland recently addressed a group of young adults in Tempe, AZ, to speak out on what he sees as an alarming trend among Mormon singles. “This may not be a very good word for an apostle to use, but I am furious about the scallywags who belly-flop off the Good Ship Mormonism.”
The mood intensified as Holland gave specific details about his felt consternation. “Now I know some of you may be thinking, ‘There goes old McJeffrey O’Holland again. That Irishman just doesn’t understand the carnival barking we face today.’ Well let me tell you, my young navel-gazing friends: you may think that your testimony is bully enough to withstand apostate flapdoodle, but it’s all fiddle-faddle and horsefeathers.”
The quivering Holland said that changing religious affiliation for any reason was proof positive of entitlement among millennials, leaving non-Mormon investigators in the audience flummoxed. “Young people today think they have a right to get flimflammed by facts and information—as if the truth were something you could just taffy-pull up online. As if good-ole sturdy faith didn’t matter. As if this was all plain-to-see gimcrack. As if none of this mattered. What a bunch of poppycock! Well if this church were built on facts, there would be no room for faith.”
Though temporarily paralyzed after being yelled at during the devotional, young adults responded positively to the evening message. “I really needed to hear this talk tonight,” said Arizona State University sophomore Stephanie Young. “Every single word was inspired. Elder Holland helped me realize that seeking information online gives the adversary an opportunity to confuse me. I am only reading church-sponsored materials from now on so I can protect my faith from facts.”
Elder Holland’s address comes only a few weeks after Brigham Young University’s commencement ceremonies, in which graduates received counsel from Elder L. Whitney Clayton to show their love for the Savior by cutting off all ties with those who wish to discuss topics that make them uncomfortable. “By this shall men know ye are the Savior’s disciples: if ye insulate yourselves one from another,” proclaimed the emotionless Clayton.
When asked following the devotional in Arizona whether he had any counsel for young people concerned about the historical authenticity of LDS scriptural origins, Holland responded saying, “The Restoration of the Gospel was never meant to be a knickknack paddywhack. Give Joseph Smith a bone,” at which point he handed out butterscotch candies and rode away on a bicycle built for two.