‘Did you make her orgasm?’: British Mormon reveals how bishops grilled him about sex for SIX HOURS with no break when he was a teenager as church members call for an end to intimate interviews of children
- David Sheppard from London faced bishops’ questions from the age of just 12
- The 27-year-old says he was made to feel like a ‘pervert’ and a ‘sexual deviant’
- Campaigners want the annual ‘worthiness interviews’ scrapped from church
The practice of children as young as eight being asked sexual questions annually in the Mormon Church is under fire from campaigners.
Former and current members of the religion are calling on elders to stop questions on masturbation, porn and sex being asked to youngsters.
David Sheppard, from London, says he was made to feel like a ‘pervert’ who was committing acts close to murder during six-hour ‘worthiness interviews’.
David Sheppard (pictured) says he was made to feel like a ‘pervert’ who was doing something close to murder if he masturbated
‘I suffered with a lot of guilt, because I did things we weren’t supposed to do,’ he told Victoria Derbyshire on the BBC.
‘They teach us masturbation is just below murder, and I felt like I was some sort of sexual deviant or pervert for doing it.’
The 27-year-old says he faced ‘worthiness interviews’ from the age of 12, but added children as young as eight can be questioned after they are baptised.
Once questioned at the age of eight, children don’t have another interview until they are 12, when the practice becomes an annual event.
Bishops sometimes ask questions related to ‘the law of chastity’ which reflect the church’s beliefs that extra-marital sex, masturbation and pornography are wrong.
Me Sheppard told the programme that he ‘confessed’ to having ‘a few girlfriends’ between the ages of 16 and 19 with whom he had intimate relationships while remaining a virgin.
But he was then asked ‘did you touch her?’ and ‘did you make her orgasm?’. Then they asked him to identify the females so they could be dealt with.
One thousand current and former Mormons march on church HQ…
EXCLUSIVE: Mormon missionary, 26, tells of the horrific…
Share this article
‘At one point during the interview I felt sick from anxiety and asked to leave and go to the toilet but they wouldn’t let me do that,’ he said. ‘I felt as though I had a total loss of control.’
The sealed-off interviews are hosted by older male bishops and the child or teenager can request another person be present. Mr Sheppard claims the bishops are not trained for these interviews.
With the church claiming 190,000 followers in the UK, campaigners say they are acting now to stop the practice becoming more widespread.
Mr Sheppard (pictured) says youngsters are being made to feel ashamed of sex
Mr Sheppard says accounts of bishops trying to ‘pray the gay away’ as well as forbidding contraception have been reported to him.
The Church says it ‘condemns any inappropriate behaviour regardless of where or when it occurs’ and claims local leaders are provided with instruction for the ‘spiritual guidance’.
Stephen Blomfield, from Bedford, sat on the Mormon Church’s Stake High Council until 2011.
He remains a member of the church and, though he never conducted interviews, he acted as an adviser to those who did and now says interviews should be scrapped.
Mr Blomfield says he underwent the questioning from the age of 12 or 13 and was told kissing, liking girls and touching was ‘bad’, resulting in guilt at the females he had kissed before being told this. Pornography and masturbation were branded ‘satanic’ in the sessions, he claims.
The son of a bishop, he says the experience in the 1980s and 90s varied depending on how intrusive the bishop was willing to be.
The father has told his local church not to interview his children and says the practice should be ‘scrapped’ altogether.
Source: Read Full Article