The creator of a
calendar that featured shirtless Mormon missionaries was
excommunicated Sunday after a disciplinary meeting with
local church leaders in Las Vegas.
Chad Hardy said
he bears no ill will toward the council of elders from
the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
"I felt like I
spoke my truth," the 31-year-old entertainment
entrepreneur said. "Bottom line, they still felt the
calendar is inappropriate and not the image that the
church wants to have."
"Men on a
Mission," which has sold nearly 10,000 copies at $14.99
each, included pictures of 12 returned missionaries wearing
black slacks, but not their trademark white shirts, in
modest poses. The men also were photographed in
traditional missionary garb and share their religious
beliefs in biographical sketches.
Some of the 12
models have also been called to disciplinary meetings, but
none were punished.
"I have no ill
feelings toward any of those people," Hardy said of
the church council. "They did what they believed was right,
and I really do feel it was the best decision for both
Frank E. Davie,
the senior leader over a group of Mormon congregations in
the Las Vegas area, confirmed the 12-member council's
decision in a telephone call to the Associated Press.
He declined further comment.
Hardy said the
purpose of the 2008 calendar was not to tear down the
church or its 13 million members.
"The project is
about stepping outside the stereotypes and stepping
outside of the image," Hardy said. "Not everybody fits the
image, and I let them know we're not trying to portray
an image for the entire church."
person is removed from official church rolls but is
still welcome at church services. Excommunicated members are
prohibited from receiving the sacrament and can't
perform church callings such as teaching or preaching
during meetings. They also cannot enter church