March 15, 2021

Priesthood, responsibility, inappropriate interviews, & anxiety.

Ever since I was a little child, I was told that when I turned 12 years old that I would be given the priesthood. This was explained to me as the power of God given to men to act in his name. What child wouldn’t want to have magic powers that make you powerful like God? Of course, I did, but it also came with a heavy toll, a massive responsibility to live perfect in order to stay considered worthy to hold the power and be able to use it.

The day came when I turned 12, this was followed by an interview with the local church leader given the title of bishop. I was basically interrogated by a middle-aged man that I barely knew with no formal training in mental health with all kinds of inappropriate questions, including invasive questions about sex, masturbation, etc. Of course, I was scared and answered all questions because I was told to do so, and also told that if I didn’t answer honestly that he would be able to read my mind and know that I was telling lies. The interview ended and I was deemed qualified to receive this special power.

A few days later there was a ritual performed in which this power was supposed to be given to me. Of course, as a 12-year-old who had been told these things, I really believed it, and thought I had the power to act for God to do magical things, like command angels to help people. This came with an extra pressure that weighed down on my shoulders to live more perfectly and not make any mistakes according to the laws of the church that I was raised in. This added pressure and stress increased my anxiety and fear of failure higher than it already was, after all I had to live perfectly like Jesus in order to be worthy now.