The Church recently came out with this statement regarding its financial independence. This statement is probably coming out as a response to the Business Week article that came out a few days ago that you can find here. I actually know one of the guys who commented in the article, described as a devout member. This is the same guy that I referred to in a post from a few weeks ago. He and some of his buddies were the ones who supplied a number of the quotes in the article, and although they are mostly benign, I'm not sure they are entirely accurate, nor am I sure that they reflect the feelings of mainstream membership. These guys are not mainstream by any means.
It seems that a good number of people are having difficulty with the Church's involvement on the City Creek Mall, and how much money went into that. Some questions have been raised about how much money went into that project versus how much is given to humanitarian aid, that the numbers seems to be not well distributed. Others ask about the Church's financial transparency and why is it that the public doesn't have detailed knowledge about all of the Church's financial holdings and actions. The same guys I mentioned above wonder aloud why the Church disclosed everything up until the 1950s or 1960s, but curbed that practice. This to me is a non-issue. If we trust the leadership, believe its inspired, then why can't we trust that it's no longer necessary to continue that practice? That may be blind faith to some, but that seems a fundamental faith concept to me.
Lastly, the Utah v. BYU football rivalry is off during the 2015-2016 seasons.This is really foolish to me. The Utes called it off presumably because they either didn't want to have to deal with BYU's team and possibly disrupting their opportunities at a title run by losing to the Cougars, or there is more to be gained from a non-regional opponent whose program maybe has more national prestige. There are all kinds of things wrong with this kind of thinking, but I think the biggest is sacrificing a rivalry that goes to the core of passion within your fan-base. What does competition even mean anymore if there is no longer a team that you're desperately trying to beat? Any Yankees fan will always say that a win against the Red Sox is more meaningful than one against the Royals. Pick any other dozens of rivalries and that's the case. It gives meaning to the competition and without it, what is it that makes sports interesting anymore?
But alas, this is how things seem to be going all over the place in sports. How does Ray Allen join the Heat after what has happened the last several years? How does Nash go to the Lakers? (Although I will say, I never really considered the Suns a "rival". They were never both peaking at the same time, so that one doesn't mean as much to me. Pierce to the Lakers though? That's another story. Yuck.)
Anyway, back to the Utah-BYU games. Is there anything else that carries as much weight in sports in all of Utah? Not even close. Local sports talk radio doesn't even talk about anything else besides the Jazz and college football. And college football has much more broad appeal. It's a terrible thing.