Have you ever had a blue-collar bishop or stake president? Do any General Authorities from North America or Europe have blue-collar backgrounds before they were called as representatives of Christ? What about Mission Presidents?
What’s your experience been? Do lines fall differently in urban/suburban areas? I’ve heard the argument that it’s more about spare time and ability to serve, though I’m not sure that holds up under actual scrutiny. What does your ward leadership look like?
In 1983 Hugh Nibley commented on what he saw as the long developing trend of religious leaders shifting to being managers:
“If you love me,” said the greatest of all leaders, “you will keep my commandments. “If you know what is good for you,” says the manager, “you will keep my commandments and not make waves.” That is why the rise of management always marks the decline, alas, of culture…”
Presumably he was not merely referring to our experience in the LDS Church but across organized religions. Does the virtual disappearance of blue collar bishops, Stake Presidents and Mission Presidents fit with the trend observed more than 30 years ago by Nibley?,
Have blue-collar bishops and leadership positions really disappeared over the last 30 years? Were they ever common? If they have disappeared, is that simply a reflection of the larger US economy, or a reflection on the ranks of Mormonism in general?
What ramifications does this hold, if any, for the church of Jesus Christ?