Sunday, January 01, 2017

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir at the Inauguration

There has been a lot said and argued about the Mormon Tabernacle Choir performing at President-Elect Donald Trump’s inauguration. Many have been angry, others supportive. One sister decided to resign the choir over the issue. I’ve seen others that seem to be questioning their testimonies over it.

This election cycle has been by far the most divisive and surprising ever. I never thought it would happen, and many are still in denial. There was talk about reversing it in the Electoral College, which didn’t happen. There were talk of recounts, which didn’t change anything.

Now we’re faced with the inauguration. The Trump administration, having a hard time booking more current and popular acts, has asked the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, sometimes called “America’s Choir” to perform.

Here are my thoughts:

First, the choir has performed for many inaugurations of both parties in the past. This one is no different. Yes, I don’t like who’s being inaugurated. I voted against him. But it’s been decided, and so the Choir wants to go sing. The Choir’s primary purpose is outreach and missionary work. Someone posted that the choir would never sing for Putin or for Kim Jong Un. I think they would. I think they would jump at the chance to share a musical message in North Korea. The choir performs in many places and for many different peoples.

Second, the Church has not made it a requirement for the members to perform. One sister has chosen to resign the Choir rather than make the performance. I admire her for taking this stance. Were I a choir member, I would have to think and pray hard to decide to perform for an event that I, personally, find so disappointing.  However, I also don’t fault those that will attend. How often do any of us get to attend a presidential inauguration as an invited guest?

Third, and the part that I find most frustrating, is the fact that Mormons said they were upset by Trump and were not going to vote for him, but, in the end, did anyway. So, with 60% of the Mormon vote, Trump won most of us over. So, the choir singing for him should be no surprise, right?

Look. I’m gonna invoke the Mo’Boy Doctrine here. If Trump ends up being as bad of a president as we think he will, there will be issues far deeper than whether or not the Choir sang. And if he turns out to be a good president, well, I’ll sing, too.

But I’m not holding my breath on that one.

Mark has a lifelong testimony of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (the Mormon Church). Mark also has other sites and blogs, including and his Dutch Oven blog.

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