LDS fraternities: the sheep in wolf’s clothing

By By Chet Cannon

By Chet Cannon

LDS fraternities are not what they claim to be.

Two-and-a-half years ago, I entered the MTC (Missionary Training Center) looking for fun and adventure. The last thing I hoped to find there was an impostor.

Before entering the MTC, I had pledged Sigma Chi at the U. After a tedious pledgeship, I earned the right and privilege to be numbered among the Sigma Chi brothers. I even got a T-shirt to prove it.

This T-shirt was and is very special to me, so there was no surprise that I took it to the MTC or when it became my MTC gym shirt of choice. I needed to represent.

One day, after a long series of intense scripture and language studies, a select number of us were released for our gym time.

Gym time is a special time for missionaries.

As I was saying, we were off to gym time, and when I entered the gym, I noticed a group of boys who didn’t want me to join in any of their reindeer games. Naturally, a distraught look made its way across my face, but what to my wondering eyes should appear but a short, balding character beckoning my presence. My heart pounded, my eyes glistened and I let out a sigh as that character said, “I, too, am a Sigma Chi.”

Could it be a true brother before me?

Then I heard those dreadful words: “Yes, I’m a Sigma Chi with LDSSA.”

Brothers and sisters, LDSSA fraternities and sororities are not the same as Greek Row fraternal organizations. I still lose sleep thinking of the audacity that boy had to number himself among the few and the proud.

It is rumored that you so-called Sigma GAMMA Chi members don’t even have to buy your friends like the rest of us. You know, on Greek Row I have been fortunate enough to buy several GOOD friends at a mere $200-$300 a head (I know what you’re thinking: They practically sell themselves).

Who are you alleged LDSSA members fooling? What about pledgeship? Do you have one? I don’t believe a weekly devotional with guest speaker John Bytheway constitutes a proper pledge experience.

I know how fraternal organizations are viewed through the eyes of the Mormon culture. I hear the negative remarks about how we resemble the Lamanites and Gadianton robbers of old.

Fraternal organizations and parties in general are often viewed as wolves in sheep’s clothing,apparently harmless at first glance-but what lies beneath is both spiritually and mentally destructive. Now you want to be a part of all this?

In terms of soda, joining LDSSA is taking the diet approach-and I might even go as far as to say the Pepsi One approach-to a greek experience: rough and tough at first glance, but soft as Charmin double-quilted toilet paper deep down.

Don’t think you can get away with it. We know it’s a front. Sure you can attach “frat boy” to your name, but we know who you really are. I’ve even heard that your initiation is a late-night screening of “Saturday’s Warrior” while binging on Pixie Stix and tropical punch Kool-Aid?sugar-free!!!

At least you get a cool T-Shirt.

I hear you LDS frat boys throw impressive parties with a great turnout. This is very admirable-however, I don’t believe I stand alone when saying that this is all synonymous with the Book of Mormon story of the prophet Lehi and the tree of life. If you remember, in this story there was a great and spacious building-or institute-and the multitudes gathered there to point fingers and distract the true followers from their objective of achieving the desirable fruit. The strong held onto the iron rod.

Well, I am here to say that I personally held on to the iron rod. I did not stray. I partook of that fruit on Greek Row.

I’m just sticking to my guns when I say the LDSSA fraternal organization- otherwise known as Sigma Gamma Chi-is truly the barking dog that doesn’t bite.