Thursday, January 15, 2009

Leaving the church, but not really...

I posted this idea on NOM, and people seemed to like it, so I'm putting it here for posterity.

Ever wish you could really just get away from church visitors but don't want to officially remove your name? Moving soon? Here's a "permanent" solution I came up with (but haven't tested). It only requires a little white lie.

Here's my (only slightly unethical) suggestion based on my knowledge of church IT systems and practices. First, move to a new ward. Don't give a forwarding address. Eventually the church WILL track you down. When that happens, eventually someone from the local unit, probably the missionaries, will come to see if the address is legitimate.

Now for the finger-crossing part.

Tell them that they are looking for the former residents, who, as it happens, recently moved. Then--and this is where the magic happens--give them a "real" forwarding address. In the middle of nowhere. Preferably in a foreign country, but a US address is probably more likely to make it back through the clerk without a hiccup. Use to find a spot In Montana or Alaska (or northern Canada?) that is literally 4+ hours from a meeting house. You'll be safe until someone from that unit tries to find you, which will honestly probably be never. Thus your record will be considered "located," and they will never track you down again.

I might start with a foreign address--in Iran.

They may send you a letter after you move (rather than the missionaries), in which case you could just send a letter back to the sender explaining the same story.

Little bit of a lie, but I love messing with systems. You could show up and make an apology (without mentioning your name) to the local bishop, if it made you feel better, but only after waiting another 18-24 months.