Millions of Mormons around the world heard a woman yelling “Stop protecting sexual predators!” during a recent general conference for members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Crystal Legionaires shouted the sentence three times during the LDS semi-annual General Conference over the weekend. She interrupted the event as President Dallin H. Oaks was inviting newly called leaders to take their seats at the podium.
The shouting could be clearly heard in the worldwide broadcast of the event, which reaches millions of Mormons across the globe…
Legionaires said she was not cited or fined, but she said security did escort her from LDS Church property.
The outburst comes as the LDS Church has been responding to allegations of sexual assault at the Provo Missionary Training Center. The outburst also comes one day after hundreds of people marched in Salt Lake City to oppose questions of a sexual nature during one-on-one “worthiness interviews” conducted between LDS leaders and LDS youth.
There have been several incidents related to sexual abuse in the Mormon church in recent months, including one we wrote about today involving a 22-year-old primary instructor who sexually abused several kids between the ages of 2 and 6.
Legionaires, however, said she was motivated by a different case, in which Joseph L. Bishop, former leader of the Church’s main Missionary Training Center, confessed to sexual misconduct.
“This is the new presidency, and with a new presidency we need to reflect on the old and the things that have been problematic in the church,” Legionaires said.
Legionaires said she raised her hand in opposition during the sustaining of the general authorities, but realized that act wasn’t enough to make a point.
She referenced the recent case involving a woman who accused a Missionary Training Center president of sexual assault.
“There was a woman who was sexually assaulted by her MTC president, and he even admitted to it on a recording and even with that, the response from the church was: We don’t have enough evidence. We aren’t going to do anything,” she said.
The church declined to comment on Saturday’s protest, but recently said it does not tolerate sexual violence.
The church says it doesn’t tolerate sexual violence, but as with most things, actions speak louder than words.
If they want people to believe that’s true, they need to adopt a no-tolerance approach to sexual abuse and child molestation. And they need to hold anyone who doesn’t adhere to those standards accountable in the harshest terms.
Otherwise, Mormons might start paying attention and follow so many others out the door.
(Screenshot via Fox 13)