The Cults by wuxiangyu


Page 5        –   INTRODUCTION
Page 7        –   THE LIFE OF JOSEPH SMITH
                   Early History (page 7)
                   Claimed Visitations (page 8)
                   Translation and Publishing of the Book of Mormon (page 8)
                   Establishing the Church (page 9)
                   The Death of Joseph Smith (page 10)
Page13        -   THE CHURCH TODAY
                   The Scriptures (pages 15-25)
                        1. The Holy Bible (page 15)
                        2. The Book of Mormon (pages15-21)
                                  The 3 Witnesses (page 18)
                                  The 8 Witnesses (page 19)
                                  Moroni 10:4 (page 21)
                        3. The Doctrine and Covenants (pages 21-23)
                                  The First Declaration (page 22)
                                  The Second Declaration (page 22)
                        4. The Pearl of Great Price (page 23-25)
                   The Living Prophet (page 25)
                   The Articles of Faith (pages 26-27)
                   3 Levels of Heaven (page 27)
                   Baptism (page 27)
                   Baptism for the Dead (page 28)
                   Gift of the Holy Ghost (page 28)
                   Genealogy (page 29)
                   Temples (page 29)
                   Meetings (page 30)
                        o Sunday Services (page 30)
                        o Young Men‘s/Young Women‘s (page 31)
                        o Home, Family and Personal Enrichment (page 32)
                        o Other Meetings and Chapel Uses (page 32)
                   Missionaries (page 32)
                   Personal Preparation (page 33)
                   Polygamy (page 34)
                   Symbols (page 35)
                   The Word of Wisdom (page 35)
                   Tithing (page 36)
Page 36       -   LIFE AS A MORMON
Page 38       -   Appendix 1 - How to Respond to Mormons
Page 39       -   Appendix 2 - Contradictions between the Book of Mormon and the Bible
Page 40       -   Appendix 3 – Presidents of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Page 41       -   Appendix 4 – The more important Mormon groups
Page 42       -   Appendix 5 – Joseph Smith‘s Occult background
Page 43       -   Appendix 6 – Court record of State of New York vs. Joseph Smith
Page 44       -   Appendix 7 – Racial Statements in LDS Scripture
Pages 45-46   -   Appendix 8 – Temple practices
Pages 47-49   -   Appendix 9 – Smithsonian Institution Statement on the Book of Mormon

Name:- The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon)

Purpose:- To evangelise the world with the message of Jesus Christ as interpreted by Joseph Smith and the
Mormon church; to baptize the dead for their salvation; for individual members to strive to attain godhood
on the basis of personal righteousness and merit.

Founder:- Joseph Smith Jnr., (1805-1844)

Source of Authority:- Supernatural revelations received by Joseph Smith, Brigham Young and other
prophets and presidents;

Revealed Teachings:- Yes (so they claim)

Claim:- To be the only true (‗Restored‘) church of Jesus Christ on the earth

Theology:- Polytheistic (technically, „Henotheistic‟); supposed ‗revealed‘ teachings are unique to the LDS
church with no parallels in history

Key Literature:- Accepted ‘Scriptures’ The Bible (Note: The Authorised (King James) Version is the
only acceptable translation to them); the Book of Mormon; Doctrine and Covenants; The Pearl of Great
Price; While the revelations of Mormon prophets and presidents are also considered scripture, these are
only occasionally added to their ‗canon‘. Other authoritative literature includes Journal of Discourses (26
volumes of writings by leading early Mormon presidents and prophets and other authorities); Joseph
Smith‟s History of the Church (7 volumes); Bruce McConkie‘s Mormon Doctrine and Doctrinal New
Testament Commentary (3 volumes); Joseph Fielding Smith‘s Doctrines of Salvation (3 volumes),
Teachings of the prophet Joseph Smith; and Gospel Doctrine; James Talmage‘s Articles of Faith; and
LeGrand Richards‘ A Marvellous Work and Wonder; Ensign (periodical) conference addresses; and others

Attitude towards Christianity:- Rejecting of it

Sects:- There are over 100+ sects of Mormonism. Among the larger of the groups are…

- The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Salt Lake City, Utah, USA)                                  -
The Reorganised Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (RLDS) (Independence, Missouri, USA) (now
renamed the „Community of Christ)                                                                           -
Church of Christ – Temple Lot (Temple Lot, Independence Missouri, USA)
- The Restoration Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Independence, Missouri, USA)
- The Church of Christ with the Elijah Message (Blue Springs, Missouri, USA)
- The Church of Jesus Christ (Bickertonites) (based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA)
- The Church of Jesus Christ (Cutlerites) Independence, Missouri, USA)
- The Restored Church of Jesus Christ (Independence, Missouri, USA)                                              -
The True and Living Church of Jesus Christ of Saints of the Last Days (Manti, Utah, USA)                      -
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Strangites) (
- The Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Colorado City, Arizona, USA)

Quotes:- „And he said unto me: Behold there are save two churches only; the one is the church of the
Lamb of God, and the other is the church of the devil; wherefore, whoso belongeth not to the church of the
Lamb of God belongeth to that great church, which is the mother of abominations; and she is the whore of
all the earth…‟ (1 Nephi 14:10)

God: An exalted physical man; ‗Elohim‘ of the Old Testament; a deity ‗created‘ (technically ‗fashioned‘)
by the sexual union of his divine mother and father. As an infinite number of gods and earths exist, God the
Father of Jesus Christ is the creator and ruler of this earth only. He is (in early Mormonism) Adam who fell
in the Garden of Eden which, according to Mormonism, existed in what is now Independence, Missouri.

Jesus: ‗Jehovah‘ of the Old Testament (cf. Moroni 10:34c); the first begotten spirit child of Elohim who
‗created‘ (or ‗fashioned‘) him by physical sexual union with Mary (one of Elohim‘s wives).

Holy Ghost and Holy Spirit: In Mormonism, the Holy Ghost is a man with a body of spiritual matter,
whereas the Holy Spirit represents the presence of God but is not a distinct person.

The Trinity: Mormonism rejects the Christian Trinity for a belief in Henotheism (the worship of one
principal God – Elohim – among many gods). Mormonism is also Tri-theistic, stressing three primary earth
gods, the Father, Son and the Holy Ghost, and it is Polytheistic, accepting endless additional gods of other

Salvation: True salvation in Mormonism is achieved by personal merit and effort with the goal of attaining
‗exaltation‘, or godhood, in the highest part of the celestial kingdom. There one may participate in ‗eternal
increase‘ – that is, as a god one may beget (or fashion) innumerable spirit children just as Elohim has. All
other salvation is considered ‗damnation‘ (interpretation: „to dam your nation‟ (i.e. to stop the flow of your
posterity!)), which to Mormons means you do not participate in the highest degree(s) of glory.

Man: An eternal refashioned spirit intelligence having the innate capacity to evolve into godhood. Men on
earth were first created as spirit offspring of Elohim and his wife through physical sexual intercourse. Thus,
men are created or fashioned as preexistent spirits and subsequently inhabit the products of human sexual
intercourse (a physical body) in order to attempt to gain exaltation or godhood.

Sin: Sin in Mormonism is scripturally downplayed. Mormonism teaches that good works cancel the penalty
of sin, and its teachings give the Fall a positive role in fostering spiritual growth and maturity.

Satan: Satan is one of the innumerable preexistent spirits created by Elohim and his wife, hence he is the
spirit brother of all men and women on earth, including Christ Himself. Because of his primeval rebellion,
he was not permitted to inherit a physical body as the rest of his brothers and sisters.

Second Coming: Mormons speak of the Second Coming of the earth god Jesus (but they have also referred
to the Second Coming of the god Joseph Smith) (Journal of Discourses, 7:289; 5:19))

Bible: The Word of God as long as it is ‗translated correctly‘. Wherever it disagrees with Mormon
theology, it is considered incorrect due to textual corruption, false translation or incorrect interpretation.

Death: Mormonism teaches that salvation is possible after physical death. Most people go to a ‗waiting
area‘ and are eventually assigned one of three principal kingdoms where opportunities exist for
advancement, possibly to a higher kingdom (at least according to some Mormon authorities).

Heaven: There are three principal kingdoms of heaven. The Celestial heaven is the highest; below it are the
Terrestrial and the Telestial heavens. These three heavens constitute various ‗degrees of glory‘ and
privilege. Personal entrance is based upon individual merit in preexistence. The Celestial kingdom also
consists of three departments of differing glories. True salvation (exaltation or godhood) is found only by
those who are worthy to be granted access to the highest part of the celestial kingdom.

Hell: Mormonism is virtually universalistic, teaching that all will be (eventually) saved except a few ‗sons
of perdition‘, hence hell is not eternal, but only a temporary purgatory. The vast majority who go there will,
in their punishment, pay the penalty for their sins, and then be raised after the millennium to inherit a
‗degree of glory‘. The few ‗sons of perdition‘ who will remain in hell forever consist of the devil and his
angels, plus a few apostate Mormons who have denied their faith. (Possibly also some adulterers or
murderers may also be confined forever in hell).

                                      The Church's official logo since 1995


The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints today claims more than 12 million members throughout the
world. In the USA alone, there are more than 5 million Mormons with the largest group of Mormons being
headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Mormons believe their church to be the divine restoration of the church established by Jesus Christ in New
Testament times. They believe that following the ascension of Jesus Christ into heaven, Christ continued to
direct his church through his apostles, but that as men rejected his apostles and they were martyred, the
authentic Christian church, along with its authority and many of its teachings, began to disappear. This led
ultimately to the ―Great Apostasy‖. The original teachings of Christ were thereafter ―corrupted by
Hellenistic philosophy and false doctrines‖ which led to the ―misinterpretation and misteaching of many

By the fourth century, the ―Priesthood‖ (or the authority to act in the name of God) had been ―lost from the
Earth completely‖, meaning that no man thereafter had valid authority from God to baptize, and so the
growth of the "true church‖ came to a halt, despite continued teaching about Christ in the world. Thus, in
the Latter-day Saint view, a ―restoration‖ was required to bring back the true Church of Jesus Christ.

The church was organized in 1830 by Joseph Smith and 5 other people and was initially called the "Church
of Christ". (It was also referred to as the "Church of Latter Day Saints" to differentiate the church of this
era from that of the New Testament, and was generally known by that name between 1834 and 1838). In
April 1838, the full name was stated as "the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints", according to
Doctrine and Covenants 115:3-4.

The church is also commonly referred to as the "LDS Church" and the "Mormon Church". Church
members are often known simply as "Mormons", "Saints", or "Latter-day Saints" (with the latter two being
the preferred terms of most Latter-day Saints themselves). The nickname "Mormon" arose soon after the
publication of The Book of Mormon in 1830. (Early church members were often called „Mormonites‟).

The book of Mormon was supposedly divinely revealed to and translated by the prophet Joseph Smith Jnr.,
during the years 1827 to 1829. It is a collection of 15 books outlining the historical events surrounding a
family of Jews who came to the Americas about the time of the Babylonian captivity of Jerusalem
(approximately 600 BC). The 13th book was (supposedly) recorded by ‗Mormon‘, a descendant from one of
the original Jewish immigrants to America. Hence the term ‗Mormon‘ was originally used pejoratively to
refer to the church or its members, but it eventually came to be used widely within the church itself.

That said, the church requests that the official name, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, be
used where possible, stating: "This full name was given by revelation from God to Joseph Smith in 1838",
although the Church now officially uses "Mormon" as a descriptive term for itself (for example, the
‗Mormon Tabernacle Choir‘).

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is one of the most active modern practitioners of
missionary work. Young men between the ages of 19 and 26 are encouraged to go on a two-year, full-time
proselytizing mission. This is usually served in a foreign country or different area of the country from
where the missionary lives. Young women and retired couples may serve missions as well. Missionaries
typically spend one to two months in the Missionary Training Center (MTC) in Provo, Utah or in other
MTC's throughout the world, studying scripture, learning new languages, and otherwise preparing
themselves for the culture in which they will be living. The LDS church claims to have about 60,000 male
and female missionaries worldwide, serving in more than 160 nations missions around the world in 102
languages making it the largest religious mission organisation in the world.

Fielding missionaries is a $500 million per year effort and currently reaps more than 300,000 new converts
each year. The Church's Provo, Utah, 26-acre Missionary Training Center receives 500 new missionaries a
week into its 3-9 week missionary training program. The clean-cut image that Mormons have attained has
been a major factor in the attractiveness of the Mormon Church to outsiders. They are forbidden to drink
coffee, tea, and alcoholic beverages, and use tobacco products. Nevertheless, only about 46% of Mormons
attend a church meeting at least once a month.


Throughout its 175 year history, the LDS church has been the subject of much controversy and criticism for
its peculiar beliefs and practices. Some of the (numerous) criticisms against the LDS church since its
inception include…

      The LDS church claims to be the exclusive restoration of the church founded by Jesus Christ and
       the sole source of priesthood authority necessary for ordinances of salvation (such as baptism). This
       has led to extensive criticism from Protestant, Catholic, and Orthodox Christians, which label it a
       cult and heretical (although the LDS church denies that these terms are applicable).

      The LDS church claims that men have the potential to become like God and inherit all that He has.

      The historical legitimacy of the Book of Mormon has been a source of much contention, especially
       over the accuracy of some of its archaeological and historical elements.

       Polygamy amongst early members of the LDS church has arguably sparked the most controversy.
       Some still practice it today and consider themselves to be true Mormons, but most of these have
       been excommunicated from the LDS church since it forbade the practice with its 1890 Manifesto.

      Previous withholding of the ‗priesthood‘ from black members. Though baptism was always open to
       people of all races and worship took place in unsegregated congregations, and the Church gave the
       priesthood to African Americans without regard to race during Joseph Smith's lifetime, the Church
       later taught that those of African descent could not be ordained to the priesthood or participate in
       temple marriage, and that interracial marriage was wrong. On June 9, 1978, a new revelation was
       announced, permitting any "worthy" male to receive the Priesthood.

      The LDS church has been criticised for being ‗anti-women‘. There are few female leaders in the
       LDS church.

The August 4, 1997, issue of Time magazine devoted 10 pages to an examination of the Mormon Church.
(MORMONS, INC:- The Secrets of America's Most Prosperous Religion, Time Magazine, 1997).

The following appeared in the Time article: "The church's material triumphs rival even its evangelical
advances. Its current assets total a minimum of $30 billion. If it were a corporation, its estimated $5.9
billion in annual gross income would place it midway through the FORTUNE 500, a little below Union
Carbide but bigger than Nike”.

Where other churches spend most of what they receive in a given year, the Latter-day Saints employ vast
amounts of money in investments estimated to be at least $6 billion strong. Most of this money is not in
bonds or stock in other peoples' companies, but is rather invested directly in church-owned, for-profit
concerns, the largest of which are agribusiness, media, insurance, travel and real estate.

All told, TIME estimates that the Latter-day Saints farmland and financial investments total some $11
billion, and that the church's non-tithe income from its investments exceeds $600 million per year.

There are richer churches than the one based in Salt Lake City (for example, the Roman Catholic church
holdings dwarf Mormon wealth. However, the Catholic Church has 45 times as many members). However,
there is no major church in the U.S. as active as the Latter-day Saints in economic life. In 1996 $5.2 billion
in tithes flowed into Salt Lake City, $4.9 billion of which came from American Mormons....

Mormons have also been active in producing general and Mormon-targeted plays, books and movies. Many
films aimed at Mormon audiences have been produced in the last decade. Mormon producers, actors,
directors, etc. are present in the television and movie industries. Producer Glen A. Larson placed elements
of his faith in the television series Battlestar Galactica (1978), (which mostly didn't survive into the 2003
reimagined series). The movie Napoleon Dynamite also had a largely Mormon crew.

Many Mormons are also well-known in music and sport. In music, Mormon singers/songwriters Gladys
Knight and Donny Osmond are well known, and in the world of professional sports, notable Mormon
athletes include NFL quarterback Steve Young, former Vikings quarterback Sean Salisbury, and the Utah
Jazz's Thurl Bailey.

Mormons are becoming increasingly prominent in politics (Massachusetts Governor and potential
presidential candidate in 2008, Mitt Romney, is an example), as well as in business, with some of the
better-known Mormons including Kevin Rollins, CEO of Dell, Inc., J.W. Marriott, Jr., President and CEO
of Marriott International Hotel chain, and Stephen Covey, author of the highly successful book „7 Habits of
Highly Effective People‟ and Chairman of FranklinCovey. The object of much ridicule in comedic media
(Tonight Show, South Park, and other TV shows and films), Mormons are an easy target to make fun of.

THE LIFE OF JOSEPH SMITH                  (refer to,15757,4071-1-2132,00.html)

                Joseph Smith, the founder and first President of the church of the Latter-Day Saints.

Early History

Joseph Smith was born on 23 December, 1805 in Vermont USA, being the fifth of eleven children born to
his parents - Lucy Mack Smith and Joseph Smith Sr. The family moved around a lot during Joseph‘s early
years, but eventually settled in the state of New York, USA in 1816. Joseph was severely limited in his
education and training. This lack of marketable skills impacted his future prospects and motivated his
explorations into things spiritual. He came by this naturally, as his close family members were known for
their stories of numerous personal dreams and visions. His fertile imagination motivated him to range far
beyond denominational limits and to experiment with some reportedly enchanted practices from the local
culture. From his father and others, he learned something of the magical arts and developed a well known
reputation as a "glass looker," leading expeditions in search of buried treasure.

Joseph claimed he could locate the existence of buried treasure hidden underground by the use of a ‗peep
stone‘ which he would place into a hat and look into to discover the location of treasure ―spiritually
revealed to him‖. Many people paid Joseph money to find buried treasure on their land, however, upon
digging in the (sometimes numerous) locations Smith would indicate, they never found any riches. One of
these, Peter Bridgeman, became disgruntled with Smith and took him to court, and Smith was tried by the
State of New York in 1826 and found guilty of disorderly conduct. (See Appendix 6).

Claimed Visitations (see „Joseph Smith – History‟ Appendix to Doctrines and Covenants)

According to Joseph Smith‘s testimony, in the spring of 1820 when he was 15 years old, he became
―concerned with which of several competing churches had the truth‖. He went into the woods nearby his
house to pray for an answer. There, he claimed, ―God the Father and Jesus Christ‖ appeared to him in
response. They commanded him to join none of the existing churches. Joseph claimed that through this and
other revelations he later experienced, God called him to be a prophet and to restore the ‗true gospel‘ to the
earth that had been lost through ‗apostasy‘. Ten years later on April 6, 1830, Joseph Smith and five
associates (including 2 brothers and his cousin) established the church in Fayette, New York.

In another ‗visitation‘, Joseph claimed that an angel from God named ‗Moroni‘ explained there was a book
hidden in a nearby hill in Cumorah, New York, that contained a record written upon gold plates that
recorded the history of ancient Jewish inhabitants of the American continent. Joseph was instructed by
Moroni that in due time he would be allowed to obtain the record and commence its translation.

 Joseph was not initially allowed to remove the plates from their location, but after 3 years the angel
Moroni allowed him to remove the plates from their resting place, to bring them home and start the work of
Transporting the golden plates home proved ‗hazardous‘ according to Smith. LDS church history records
the following: (Smith) returned immediately and retrieved the plates. Wrapping them in a linen frock, he
started through the woods, thinking it might be safer than the traveled road. But just as he jumped over a
log, he was struck from behind with a gun. Joseph, however, was able to knock his assailant down and flee.
Half a mile later he was assaulted again but managed to escape, and before he arrived home he was
accosted a third time. [Some accounts add, ‗In striking the last one, he dislocated his thumb, which, however, he did not
notice until he came within sight of the house, when he threw himself down in the corner of the fence in order to recover his
breath‘]. His mother said that when he reached home he was “altogether speechless from fright and the
fatigue of running.” [History of the Church, Chapter 4, Joseph Entrusted with the Plates, page 45]

This account appears entirely fanciful as gold weighs 546.59 kg (1204.7 lb) per cubic foot. Hence plates of
gold measuring 7‖ x 8‖ x 6‖ inches (LDS church official dimensions of the plates) would approximate 1/3 of
a cubic foot and weigh approximately 106.5kg (234.7 lb) - roughly about the same weight as an All Black
front row prop!! (Even if we grant there were air gaps in the mass seeing Joseph claims they were „gold plates‟, it would be
difficult to imagine them weighing less than 70 kg (155lb), or approximately the bodyweight of a young male!!).

Translation and Publishing of the Book of Mormon

Once safely home with the plates, Joseph set to work on their ‗translation‘. This involved himself
‗dictating‘ from the plates and his cousin, Oliver Cowdrey, recording in longhand Smith‘s words. The
record on the plates was supposedly engraved in a language known as "reformed Egyptian" (Mormon 9:32)
- a language that Smith could only interpret as he gazed into the "Urim and Thummim", magic glass lenses
that had been hidden in the box along with the plates (Joseph Smith – History 59).
The record contained on the plates purportedly contained an ‗abridged‘ history of America's ancient
inhabitants - descendants of a Jewish clan led by a patriarch called ‗Lehi‘ who fled Jerusalem with his
family shortly before the destruction of the first Temple in the time of Jeremiah (approx 600 BC). The
plates record the history of the generations of Lehi down to the last surviving descendant (called ‗Moroni‘)
who died sometime around 421AD, but not before he had hidden the plates in the ground at Cumorah.
After completing the translation on 1 July 1829, Smith arranged for the Book of Mormon to be produced by
a printer in Palmyra, New York. An agreement was made on 17 August 1829 to print five thousand copies
for three thousand dollars. A number of people in the town of Palmyra, however, when they learned of the
nature of the book (a new ‗golden Bible‘) held a meeting and passed resolutions not to purchase the book
when it came from the press. The printer grew nervous, but Joseph managed to convince Martin Harris, a
farmer friend and early church member, by means of a ‗revelation of God‘ (Doctrines and Covenants
19:26) that he should sell part of his land to pay for the cost of production. One hundred and fifty-one acres
of Harris‘s farm were sold at a public auction in April 1831 to pay off the printer for the production of the
Book of Mormon and it was this ‗sacrifice‘ that made the printing of the Book of Mormon possible. (cf.
History of the Church, Chapter 5, Publication of the Book of Mormon, p62-66)

Joseph Smith said he was ―divinely instructed to sell copies of the Book of Mormon for between $1.25 and
$1.75 each‖. ( and so the first copies of the Book of Mormon
were available for public sale on 26 March 1830. (History of the Church, Chapter 5, Events associated with
the Publication of the Book of Mormon, p65). Joseph managed to get his family members involved in the
sales department. ―Samuel H. Smith, the Prophet‘s younger brother, was ordained an elder at the first
conference of the Church on 9 June 1830 and was soon taking summer trips into neighboring counties,
alone or with his parents, to sell the Book of Mormon‖. („History of the Church, Chapter 6, Early
Missionary Labours and Conversions, p75).

The Book of Mormon proved difficult to sell. However, some people (mostly simple farm folk) did buy it
and began to read it. They also began to seek out Joseph Smith to see if the things written in it were true.
Smith testified that they were (of course), and so a number of people began ‗converting‘ to Mormonism.
Establishing the Church
On 6th April, 1830 the ‗Church of Christ‘ (as it was first named) was established by 6 people (two of his
brothers, a cousin and two friends plus Joseph) and Joseph Smith was appointed as its prophet, seer and
revelator. Though central to the events, the Book of Mormon was, however, only one element needed to
bring about the complete "restoration" according to Smith. Over the next 14 years, Smith produced other
works and prophetic texts, authored (he claimed) under identity of other ancient saints who appeared to him
or whose writings Smith later ‗discovered‘, including Abraham and Moses.

                                    After Smith completed the translation of the Book of Mormon, he
                                    claimed that the Angel Moroni returned and took the golden plates back
                                    to heaven, so the LDS church does not possess the original plates today.
                                    Smith also claimed that several other angelic personages appeared to
                                    him bearing "keys" pertaining to the true church of God - priestly roles
                                    and consecrations lost in the great ‗apostasy‘ that overtook Christianity
                                    after just a few centuries.

                                    John the Baptist supposedly appeared to Joseph Smith and ordained
                                    Smith and Oliver Cowdrey to the lesser (or ‗Aaronic‘) priesthood,
                                    granting them authority to baptize. Next came a visitation from New
                                    Testament apostles Peter, James and John, who ordained Joseph to the
                                    higher (Melchizedek) priesthood. By 1836, Elijah, Moses, and Jesus
                                    Christ had all appeared to the ‗Prophet Smith‘, restoring the ‗fullness of
God's power and truth to the earth‘. (Note: This claimed visit from the apostle John appears to contradict
Doctrine and Covenants 7, which claims that the apostle John is still alive on the earth!)

Duly ordained to the restored priesthood and with the Book of Mormon now at hand, Joseph's disciples
fanned out across the north-eastern states of the USA. Their message was simple; the ancient church of
God had been restored with its powers, priesthood, and with a re-opened canon - a ‗restoration‘
accomplished by God through a modern prophet, Joseph Smith. The flock grew quickly...

The Death of Joseph Smith

By 1836, a Mormon communalist society was flourishing at Kirtland, Ohio (near Cleveland), and a second
gathering of Mormons was taking form on the Missouri frontier. But between 1837 and 1839 a series of
disasters struck. First, amidst a general financial collapse (caused in part by insolvency from a failed bank
Smith had started in Kirtland), the Kirtland community was abandoned. Then the new ‗Zion‘ in Missouri
came under violent persecution, culminating in the "Mormon war" - a conflict which finally forced all
Mormons out of the state under threat of extermination. From this 1839 debacle in Missouri, the Mormon
refugees moved West to Illinois to the new city named by the Prophet, "Nauvoo".

Over the next four years the Mormon settlement at Nauvoo emerged from a swampy backwater to become,
in 1844, one of the largest cities in state of Illinois. Nearly twenty thousand converts answered the call to
come to Joseph's new ‗Zion‘, with 4000 of them arriving from England alone. Brick homes and shops lined
the city's well-planned streets; riverboats unloaded at its Mississippi docks, and on the bluff above,
overlooking the city and river, masons raised a new temple after the ‗ancient order of Solomon‘.

But behind a facade of success, danger and turmoil encompassed the Prophet. By the Spring of 1844
rumours of his multiple marriages and sexual liaisons, and of strange rituals and unorthodox teachings,
heralded growing turmoil within the Mormon community. Plots abounded. Events were quickly escalating
towards scandal and open schism. In early June, prominent Mormon dissidents assembled a printing press
in Nauvoo with the intent to publish a paper exposing Smith's secret teachings, including the practice of
polygamy. The first (and only) issue of the paper did just that, creating an intolerable situation for Smith.
He responded by declaring the press a public nuisance and ordering it destroyed.

Smith was subsequently arrested for having ordered the destruction of public property. (Smith ordered the
Mormon‟s to burn and destroy the printing press of the „Nauvoo Expositor‟ as well as destroy all extant
copies of the newspaper that exposed his polygamous practices and lifestyle). Evidently believing his time
of death to be approaching, Smith ‗prophesied‘ he was going ‗like a lamb to the slaughter‘ and that he was
‗as calm as a summer‘s morning‘. (Doctrine and Covenants 135:4). However, the actual events of his death
appear to be anything but calm or lamb-like.

On June 27, 1844 while locked in the Carthage jail with his brother Hyram and two other Mormons, an
‗armed mob‘ stormed the jail. Joseph and his brother were eventually shot dead - but not before Joseph had
shot back first(!), wounding three of the mob [some accounts state that 2 of the 3 men were killed] with a pistol that
had been smuggled into the jail. Joseph himself was shot and killed while ‗leaping from a window‘.
(History of the Church, Chapter 22, The Martyrdom, p 282; Doctrine and Covenants 135:1).

At his death, Joseph left behind 49 wives, most of whom he had married between 1843 and 1844. (It also
appears that when he married them, at least 12 of them were already married and had living husbands!).
After the death of Joseph Smith, Brigham Young - then President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles -
was sustained by the majority of the church to be the next Prophet and President of the church of the
Latter-day Saints.


                        Brigham Young (1801-1877) was born in Vermont, USA.

In 1830 Brigham Young was living in Mendon, New York, when Samuel Smith, Joseph‘s brother, passed
through on a trip to sell the Book of Mormon. Samuel left a copy with Brigham's oldest brother, Phineas,
who gave it to Brigham. After nearly two years of investigating the book, Brigham, ―moved by the
testimony of a Mormon elder‖ whom he had also met, was baptized in the spring of 1832. All of Brigham's
immediate family were also baptized, and they all remained loyal Latter-day Saints throughout their lives.

One week after his baptism, Brigham gave his first sermon. He declared "[After I was baptized] I wanted to
thunder and roar out the Gospel to the nations. It burned in my bones like fire pent up, so I [commenced]
to preach…. Nothing would satisfy me but to cry abroad in the world, what the Lord was doing in the latter
days" (Journal of Discourses 1:313).

Brigham's subsequent missionary tours carried him north, east, west, and south of Mendon. He and his
brother made several preaching trips into the New York and Ontario, Canada, countryside. In the summer
of 1833 he travelled to Kirtland, Ohio with several of his Canadian converts, where he heard Joseph Smith
teach that ‗building the kingdom of God required more than just preaching‘. Brigham returned to New
York and moved his household to Kirtland so he could participate in building a new Mormon society there.

Dedication and potential qualified Brigham Young to be selected in February 1835 as a member of the
Church's Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. The Twelve were a "travelling high council" charged to take the
gospel ‗to all the nations, kindred‘s, tongues, and people‘. In fact, Brigham's family were hardly settled in
Nauvoo when he and the other members of the Twelve left to visit Great Britain as Mormon missionaries.
Despite poverty and poor health all around, Brigham left his wife and children in September, 1839
determined to go to England or ‗die trying‘. He and his companions docked at Liverpool in April 1840.

As quorum president, Brigham directed the work in Britain. That year they baptized between 7,000 and
8,000 converts; printed and distributed 5,000 copies of the Book of Mormon, 3,000 hymn books, 1,500
volumes of the millennial star, and 50,000 tracts; and established a shipping agency and assisted nearly
1,000 to emigrate to Nauvoo, Illinois. Upon returning to Nauvoo after seeing great success in England,
Brigham was given the assignment of directing the Twelve in their supervision of missionary work, the
purchase of lands and settling of immigrants, and various construction projects.

In 1841 Brigham was taught the principle of ‗plural marriage‘ by Joseph Smith which he ‗accepted‘ after
‗much reluctance and considerable thought and prayer‘. With his first wife‘s consent, he married Lucy Ann
Decker Seeley, who became his second wife in June 1842. Brigham continued to add wives through his life
and at his death in 1877 he had 27, sixteen of whom bore him 57 children!
As president of the quorum, (second only to the First Presidency in authority and responsibility), Brigham
was highly prominent and influential in Nauvoo. He helped direct everything from the construction of the
Nauvoo Temple to missionary work abroad, and he also continued personally undertaking preaching
missions each summer.

In May 1844, while Brigham and other apostles were away on summer missions, Joseph Smith was
arrested and later killed on June 27. Brigham was in Boston and did not hear word of the assassination until
July 16. He immediately rushed back to Nauvoo, arriving August 6, 1844. On August 8, Brigham and the
Twelve were sustained to lead the Church and Brigham remained the leader until his death in 1877.

After violence erupted in Nauvoo in September 1845, Brigham publicly announced the Mormons intention
to leave Illinois by the following spring. Partly because of concerns about governmental intervention,
Brigham began the migration earlier in the winter of February 1846. This was not entirely a popular
decision. Many Mormons remained behind including Joseph Smith‘s first wife and his son, Joseph Smith
III. (They eventually ended up forming The Reorganised Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints
(RLDS) that still remains today based in Independence, Missouri, USA, now renamed the „Community of
Christ‟). However, by the hundreds, then by thousands, people, animals, and wagons crossed the
Mississippi River and trudged across Iowa mud to a winter quarters (now Florence, Nebraska) on the
Missouri River. By late spring nearly 16,000 Mormons were on the road on the 1300 mile trek.

             Map shows the journey route of the Mormons from Nauvoo, Illinois to Salt Lake City Utah

Brigham Young personally directed this exodus, which involved the allocation of foodstuffs, wagons, oxen,
and Church property to organized companies setting out on the trail. Brigham Young set out for Utah with
an advance group of 143 men, 3 women, and 2 children on April 5, 1847 and he arrived in the Salt Lake
Valley on July 24, a few days behind the advance party. Once he saw the valley, he announced it as the
right place for a new headquarters city and confirmed that the region would be the new gathering place. He
also identified the site for a temple.

Brigham directed the exploration of the region; helped survey and apportion the land for homes, gardens,
and farming; and named the new settlement "Great Salt Lake City, Great Basin, North America". Under
Brigham Young's direction, cooperative teams were assigned to dig ditches and canals to irrigate crops and
to furnish water to homes. Other brigades fenced residential areas, built roads, cut timber, and set up shops.
Other groups selected new locations for settlements and helped place people in the best areas. Still others
were called on missions to proselytize in the United States, Europe, or the Pacific.

In the spring of 1849 Brigham Young organized Salt Lake City and set up the state of Deseret with himself
as governor. With thousands of Mormons arriving from the eastern United States and Europe, colonization
demanded Brigham Young's attention. Under his direction, four kinds of colonies were established: first,
settlements intended to be temporary places of gathering and recruitment, such as Carson Valley in Nevada;
second, colonies to serve as centres for production, such as iron at Cedar City, cotton at St. George, cattle
in Cache Valley, and sheep in Spanish Fork, all in Utah; third, colonies to serve as centres. Under
Brigham‘s direction, about 400 colonies were established within the first ten years of Mormon occupation
of Utah.

In December 1847, Brigham and other members of the Twelve reorganized the First Presidency of the
Church, and made Brigham the second president. In 1851, Brigham was appointed governor and
superintendent of Indian Affairs of Utah Territory by U.S. President Millard Fillmore. Construction of the
Salt Lake Temple was begun in 1853.

However, continuing controversy with the US government over the Mormon practice of plural marriage,
however, eventually led to the decision of U.S. President James Buchanan in 1857 to replace Brigham
Young with an "outside" governor. At the same time, President Buchanan, sent a major portion of the U.S.
Army to Utah to install the new governor and to ensure the execution of U.S. laws.

Fearful for his Mormon people, Brigham began calling them home from the outlying colonies and
mobilized the Saints to ‗defend their homes‘. It was during this time that the infamous ‗Mountain Meadows
Massacre‘ occurred in which 120 people (including 12 women and 35 children) were shot, knifed and
clubbed to death by Mormon‘s who had disguised themselves as native American Indians.

Fearing threat of retaliation with the US Government, Brigham Young eventually arranged a peaceful
settlement whereby the Army occupied Camp Floyd, a post some forty miles from Salt Lake City. President
Brigham Young remained as governor of the people of Utah. (This was in part because the US Army had to
leave Utah in 1861 as the American Civil War had started).

In 1875 Brigham established the Brigham Young Academy (later Brigham Young University), in 1877
Brigham Young College (Logan, Utah) and the Latter-day Saints College. Brigham Young remained
vigorous until his death in August 1877. He overhauled Church organization at every level, formalizing
practices that would characterize the Church for nearly a century.
Brigham Young died on August 29, 1877, of peritonitis, the result of a ruptured appendix and he left
behind his numerous wives and children, as well as a personal fortune of $600,000.

Today, the church is currently led by President Gordon B. Hinckley (15th President) who is 96 years old.
(LDS Presidents remain in office until their death). The church today reports a worldwide membership of
12,560,869 as of December 31, 2005, with 6.7 million members residing outside the United States. It is the
fourth largest religious body in the United States. Members living in the US and Canada constitute 47% of
membership, Latin America 36%, and members in the rest of the world 17%.

Gordon B. Hinckley, 15th President of the LDS church.

The LDS Church claims their church is organised in the same pattern as that which Jesus Christ organized
during His life on earth (Articles of Faith, 6). They believe Jesus Christ leads His Church today through
living prophets .

The head of the church is termed the President, whom the members revere as the Prophet, Seer, and
Revelator. The President is entitled to receive revelation from God to guide the church and the world as
God‘s mouthpiece. Other general, area, and local authorities of the church include Apostles, Seventies,
Stake Presidents, Bishops, and other quorum presidents. The president of the church serves as such until
death, after which the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles meet, pray, and receive ―revelation‖ as to whom the
next prophet should be. (Although not specified by revelation, the senior apostle has historically become
the new President of the church). General Authorities work full-time for the church, and those that need it
receive a stipend from the church.

The President of the LDS Church and his two                          The Lord Jesus Christ
counsellors are called the ‗First Presidency‘. They are
assisted by the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, who
are ‗special witnesses of Jesus Christ‘. All members                    First Presidency
of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve
Apostles are considered to be apostles and prophets.           Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
The Seventies, consisting of Area Presidencies, are
other LDS Church leaders that help the Twelve
                                                                       Area Presidencies
Apostles with their duties.These LDS Church
Leaders serve in different locations throughout the
world while stake presidents, bishops, and branch                      Stake Presidency
presidents serve in the local communities where they
live.                                                             Bishop / Branch President

The church has no general salaried ministry. Area
and local authorities are unpaid and continue in their          Family (LDS Church Members)
normal occupations while serving in leadership.


The Scriptures
Under the Church's doctrine of continuing revelation (see the Ninth Article of Faith), the Church has an
open scriptural canon which thus far includes four written parts to it (known as the ‗Standard Works‘):-
    1.   The Holy Bible
    2.   The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ
    3.   The Doctrine and Covenants, and
    4.   The Pearl of Great Price.

 The Standard Works of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints printed in the Quadruple Combination format

1). The Holy Bible

English-speaking members typically use the King James Version of the Bible. Though the LDS church sees
the Bible as part of the canon and its members believe it to be the word of God, they believe that omissions
and mistranslations are present in even the earliest known manuscripts (1 Nephi 13:26-29). They claim that
the errors in the Bible have led to incorrect interpretations of certain passages. Still, they believe the
majority of the Bible to be correct.

 (Note: Joseph Smith did begin „translating‟ selected verses of the Bible, by subject. His incomplete work is known as the
„Joseph Smith Translation of the Bible‟ or „Inspired Version‟. Although this Bible translation is not generally quoted by
members of the Church, the KJV Bible issued by the Church contains cross references to the Joseph Smith Translation (JST), as
well as an appendix containing major excerpts from it).

2). The Book of Mormon

The introduction of The Book of Mormon describes the book as follows:
        ―The Book of Mormon is a volume of holy scripture comparable to the Bible. It is a record of God‘s dealings with the
         ancient inhabitants of the Americas and contains, as does the Bible, the fullness of the everlasting gospel. The book was
         written by many ancient prophets by the spirit of prophecy and revelation. Their words, written on gold plates, were
         quoted and abridged by a prophet-historian named Mormon. The record gives an account of two great civilizations. One
         came from Jerusalem in 600 B.C., and afterward separated into two nations, known as the Nephites and the Lamanites.
         The other came much earlier when the Lord confounded the tongues at the Tower of Babel. This group is known as the
        Jaredites. After thousands of years, all were destroyed except the Lamanites, and they are the principal ancestors of the
        American Indians. The crowning event recorded in the Book of Mormon is the personal ministry of Jesus Christ among
        Nephites soon after his resurrection. It puts forth the doctrines of the gospel, outlines the plan of salvation, and tells men
        what they must do to gain peace in this life and eternal salvation in the life to come."

According to the ‗Prophet Joseph Smith‘ in its introduction, The Book of Mormon is: „The most correct of
any book on earth‟ (Introduction to The Book of Mormon, paragraph 6). Unfortunately for the LDS
Church, this ‗most correct of books‘ has undergone between 3000 to 4000 changes since the first edition
was published in 1830. Even after all the changes, the Book of Mormon still contains:-
    Gross anachronisms (Jacob 2:27 – ‗Adieu‘)
    Factual errors (1 Nephi 2:8 – River ‗Laman‘ emptied into the Red Sea)
    Numerical problems (Ether 6:5,11 – Jaredite barge taking 344 days to make its way across the ocean to America in
        spite of a ‗furious wind‘ constantly blowing, or less than 1 mph travel speed!)
       Plagiarisms from the King James Bible (2 Nephi contains 18 chapters of the book of Isaiah quoted verbatim)
       Contradictions with the Bible (Alma 7:10 – Jesus was born in Jerusalem), and,
       False prophecies (2 Nephi 10:7 - The Jews will not be restored to Israel until they believe in Christ).

The Book of Mormon provides no ancient maps with it, but even after 175 years of extensive exploration
and archeological research (undertaken both by the LDS Church and other independent bodies)…
           o No Book of Mormon cities have been located.
           o No Book of Mormon names have been found in New World inscriptions.
           o No genuine inscriptions have been found in Hebrew in America.
           o No genuine inscriptions have been found in America in Egyptian or anything similar to
              Egyptian, which could correspond to Joseph Smith's 'reformed Egyptian.'
           o No ancient copies of Book of Mormon scriptures have been found.
           o No ancient inscriptions of any kind in America which indicate that the ancient inhabitants
              had Hebrew or Christian beliefs have been found.
           o No mention of Book of Mormon persons, nations, or places have been found.
           o No artifacts of any kind which demonstrates the Book of Mormon is true have been found.
                                             (Archaeology and the Book of Mormon by Hal Hougey, p. 12)

In addition to these gigantic problems, the most damning evidence against the LDS Church is that the
Book of Mormon does not teach most of the major doctrines of the LDS Church! Examples include…
     God is married
       Jesus is Lucifer‘s spirit brother
       The ‗holy‘ principle of plural marriage
       Baptism for the dead
       There are many gods
       The trinity are three gods
       Jesus was conceived by a physical relationship between the Father and Mary
       Personal blood atonement for certain grievous sins
       Joseph Smith is essential for salvation, etc

The following table is just a sample of some of the many contradictions between the Book of Mormon and
other Mormon writings by Joseph Smith.


                   One God                                               Plural Gods

 Book of Mormon: Alma 11:27-39, 44; 2 Nephi                Doctrine and Covenants: Section 121:32;
31:21; Mormon 7:7; 3 Nephi 11:27 Testimony of                           132:18-20, 37
             the three witnesses

              God is a Spirit                                          God Has a Body

       B. of M. - Alma 18:26-28; 22:8-11                           D. & C. - Section 130:22

             God Dwells in Heart                                God Does Not Dwell in Heart

             B. of M. - Alma 34:36                                 D. & C. - Section 130:3

              Creation - One God                                   Creation - Plural Gods

B. of M. - 2 Nephi 2:14; Jacob 4:9 Pearl of Great            Book of Abraham - Chapters 4 and 5
             Price - Moses, Chapter 2

                God Cannot Lie                                      God Commands Lying

      B. of M. - Ether 3:12; 2 Nephi 9:34                     P.G.P. - Book of Abraham 2:22-25

          God's Word Unchangeable                                 God's Word Can Change

             B. of M. - Alma 41:8                                  D. & C. - Section 56:4-5

           No Pre-Existence of Man                                    Man Pre-Existed

    B. of M. - Jacob 4:9; Alma 18:28, 34-36              D. & C. - Section 93:23, 29-33 P.G.P. - Bk of
                                                                     Abraham 3:18, 21-23

            Death Seals Man's Fate                                   Chance After Death

   B. of M. - Mosiah 2:36-39; Alma 34:32-35                  D. & C. - Section 76:106-112; 88:99

       Heathen Saved Without Baptism                                  Baptism for Dead

       B. of M. - Moroni 8:22-23 2 Nephi 9:25-26;                 D. & C. - Section 128:5, 17-18
                    Mosiah 15:24-27

                    Heaven or Hell                           Three Kingdoms in Heaven - Most Saved

    B. of M. - 2 Nephi 28:22; 1 Nephi 15:35; Most                 D. & C. - Section 76:43, 70-112
   Saved Mosiah 16:11, 27:31; Alma 41:4-8, 42:16

               Murder Can Be Forgiven                              No Forgiveness For Murder

                 B. of M.- 3 Nephi 30:2                               D. & C. - Section 42:18

                 Polygamy Condemned                                   Polygamy Commanded

    B. of M. - Jacob 1:15, 2:24, 3:5; Mosiah 11:22,             D. & C. - Section 132:1, 37-39, 61,
               Nephi 26:31; Mosiah 27:5
                                                           D. & C. - Section 42:71-73; 43:12-13; 51:13-14

The Witnesses

According to his record, Joseph Smith translated the Book of Mormon by the power of God from gold
plates. Eleven witnesses signed testimonies of the having seen the plates of gold, and their testimony is
printed in the preface to every Book of Mormon. Three witnesses testified to having seen ‗an angel show
them the gold plates‘, and to ‗having heard God bear witness to its truth‘, while eight others stated that
Joseph Smith ‗showed them the plates and that they handled and examined them‘.

a) The Three Witnesses
Three men - Martin Harris, Oliver Cowdrey and David Whitmer - testify that they ‗saw the gold plates‘ in a
visitation from the angel Moroni. (History of the Church, Chapter 5, Witnesses to the Book of Mormon,
p59-60; Testimony of the 3 Witnesses in introduction to Book of Mormon). What is not well known is that
each of these Three Witnesses were all eventually excommunicated from the Mormon church! (Articles of
Faith, James E. Talmage, 1984, p 452).

There is also much documentation to show that all three of these ‗witnesses‘ were of questionable character
and double-mindedness. In fact, Joseph Smith himself said on December 16, 1838, speaking of these three
that, "…such characters as McLellin, John Whitmer, David Whitmer, Oliver Cowdrey, and Martin Harris
are too mean to mention; and we had liked to have forgotten them”!! (History of the Church, Volt 3, p232)

As to some specific know facts about each of the three witnesses:-
       Martin Harris
           o Was known for being very unstable religiously. (Over his whole life he changed his
             religious affiliation more than 13 times).
           o The Mormons stated of Martin Harris and a few other men within the pages of the church's
             official newspaper at the time that, "a lying deceptive spirit attend them...they are of their
             father, the devil...The very countenance of Harris will show to every spiritual-minded

            person who sees him, that the wrath of God is upon him." (Latter-Day Saint's, Millennial
            Star, Vol 8 pp124-128).
          o Harris is called a ‗wicked man‘ by Joseph Smith (Doctrine and Covenants 10:7) after he
            supposedly ‗lost‘ some of the early manuscript pages of the Book of Mormon(!).

      David Whitmer

          o Whitmer said in 1887: "If you believe that God spake to us three witnesses by his own voice,
            then I tell you that in June, 1838, God spake to me again by his own voice from the heavens,
            and told me to 'separate myself from among the Latter-day Saints...'" (Address to all
            believers in Christ, p27, 1887)
          o In his 1887, Address to All Believers, Whitmer called Joseph Smith ‗a fallen prophet‘, and
            he condemned the Mormon Church in strong terms. In Address, Whitmer ferociously
            condemned polygamy as being contrary to both the Bible and the Book of Mormon, and also
            wrote, “We do not indorse the teachings of any so-called Mormons or Latter Day Saints,
            which are in conflict with the gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, as taught in the
            New Testament and the Book of Mormon. They have departed in a great measure from the
            faith of the CHURCH OF CHRIST as it was first established, by heeding revelations given
            through Joseph Smith, who, after being called of God to translate his sacred word--the
            Book of Mormon--drifted into many errors and gave many revelations to introduce
            doctrines, ordinances and offices in the church, which are in conflict with Christ's
            teachings.” For giving his ‗Address‟, Whitmer was excommunicated.

      Oliver Cowdrey

          o Was excommunicated from the Mormon church in 1838 after he personally accused Joseph
            Smith of committing adultery with Fanny Alger (Joseph‘s first polygamous wife) and joined
            the Methodist church. [In April 1838, the high council in Far West, Missouri, upheld the
            following charges against Oliver: "urging on vexatious Lawsuits; seeking to destroy the
            character of President Joseph Smith Jr., by falsely insinuating that he was guilty of adultery,
            treating the Church with contempt by not attending meetings, for the sake of filthy lucre . . .
            turning to the practice of the Law, being connected in the 'Bogus' business [counterfeiting],
            and dishonestly retaining notes after they had been paid and betaking himself to the
            beggarly elements of the world and neglecting his high and Holy Calling‖. (Donald Q.
            Cannon and Lyndon W. Cook, eds., Far West Record, Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1983,
            163). The high council excommunicated Oliver Cowdery on 12 April 1838]. [To his brother
            Warren written in January 1838, three months before Oliver's excommunication, speaking of
            Joseph Smith, Oliver wrote, "A dirty, nasty, filthy affair of his and Fanny Alger's was talked
            over in which I strictly declared that I had never deviated from the truth in the matter, and,
            as I supposed, was admitted by himself." (Oliver Cowdery to Warren A. Cowdery, 21
            January 1838, retained copy, Oliver Cowdery Letter Book, Huntington Library, in Anderson
            and Faulring, Documentary History of Oliver Cowdery, 4:218–19)].

          o    J.H. Beadle writes, “Oliver Cowdery was at that time a sort of wandering schoolmaster,
              rather noted as an elegant scribe. He assisted in translating the inscriptions on the plates,
              continued an active Saint for many years, and was finally expelled from the Church in
              Missouri, „for lying, counterfeiting and immorality.‟ He led a rambling life for many years,
              and died a short time since a miserable drunkard.” (Beadle 1870, 25-26). (Note: Cowdery
              died also claiming that the book of Doctrines & Covenants must be discarded).

b) The Eight Witnesses

  In the book of Mormon, the Eight Witnesses names in the front section are listed as being:-
      Christian Whitmer
      Hiram Page
      Jacob Whitmer
      Joseph Smith, Sen
      Peter Whitmer, Jun
      Hyrum Smith
      John Whitmer
      Samuel H. Smith

      It is noticeable that, of the eight witnesses, four of them are Whitmers (directly related to David
       Whitmer - one of the 3 witnesses mentioned above). A fifth is related to the Whitmer family (as
       Hiram Page was the husband of David Whitmer‘s sister!). Of the remaining three, one is Joseph
       Smith‘s father, and the other two are Joseph‘s brothers! All told, they don‘t amount to a
       gathering of (entirely) neutral witnesses. In fact, it is a very nepotistic group!

      Some Mormons point out the 8 witnesses gave a more specific testimony of the plates, as the 8
       witnesses claim they did not merely see the gold plates in a vision (as the 3 witnesses claimed),
       but rather they had them „shown to them‟, and „the leaves of the plates we did handle with our
       hands‟. (Testimony of the 8 Witnesses, Book of Mormon). However, this actually creates some
       problems for the LDS church, as Joseph Smith claimed the angel Moroni took the gold plates
       back to heaven after „the messenger called for them (and) I delivered them up to him…he has
       them in his charge until this day‟ (Testimony of the Prophet Joseph Smith, Front Section of the
       Book of Mormon). It is a Mormon inconsistency for the 8 witnesses to claim they were able to
       ‗see and touch the plates‘, as this event occurred after the 3 witnesses received their vision. (If
       the plates were supposedly in the possession of the angel Moroni, how could the 8 witnesses „see
       them and touch them‟ with their hands.

      In actuality, historical records show that only three of the eight witnesses made statements that
       they actually handled the plates. They were Joseph Smith‘s two brothers Hyram and Samuel and
       John Whitmer. Another Smith who was not among the witnesses also claims to have handled the
       plates - Joseph‘s brother William Smith. William said, "I did not see them uncovered, but I
       handled them and hefted them while wrapped in a tow frock and judged them to have weighed
       about sixty pounds. ... Father and my brother Samuel saw them as I did while in the frock. So did
       Hyrum and others of the family." When William was asked if he didn't want to remove the cloth
       and see the bare plates, he replied, "No, for father had just asked if he might not be permitted to
       do so, and Joseph, putting his hand on them said; 'No, I am instructed not to show them to any
       one. If I do, I will transgress and lose them again‟. We did not care to have him break the
       commandment and suffer as he did before." (Zion's Ensign, p. 6, January 13, 1894.) Hence,
       William Smith claimed that Joseph Smith forbade anyone from seeing the bare plates they were
       lifting. Perhaps the question to ask is that - without uncovering the plates - how can the witnesses
       conclusively testify that what they were lifting were gold plates (as opposed to another heavy
       metal, such as lead?)

      John Whitmer doesn‘t help the LDS cause either when he said to Theodore Turley in 1839, "I
       now say, I handled those plates; there were fine engravings on both sides…they were shown to
       me by a supernatural power" (History of the Church, Vol. 3, p. 307). If John Whitmer had
       physically seen the plates with his own eyes as he claimed in the testimony of the 8 witnesses,
       why would he need a ‗supernatural power‘ to see them?

While the eight witnesses ‗testify to seeing the plates and handling them‘, the question as to whether this
was a literal or a spiritual occurrence remains specious and obscure. Another factor to consider is that by
1847 not a single one of the surviving seven witnesses remained in the Mormon church! (Hyram Smith
  was killed at the time of Joseph Smith‟s death). In fact, five of the 8 witnesses joined The Church of
  Christ started by William McLellin after being excommunicated from the LDS church. (D. Michael
  Quinn, The Mormon Hierarchy - Origins of Power, p. 188, Signature Books, 1994) ?!)
  A final question one could ask is that - if 3 witnesses are sufficient to testify legally in a court of law as
  to the truthfulness of an event - why are a further 8 witnesses even needed in the first place..?
  Moroni 10:4
  It should be noted that Mormon missionaries will often give out copies of the Book of Mormon and ask
  their recipients to read it ‗sincerely‘ and then pray the prayer of Moroni 10:4, namely to „ask God, the
  Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere
  heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of
  the Holy Ghost‟. Mormons will ask you to read, ponder, and pray in order to ‗find out if the Book of
  Mormon is, indeed, true‘.

  However, the question of whether something is true or not is a question of facts. Mormon missionaries
  quoting Moroni 10:4 is not so much of a promise as it is a manipulative device. It promises a particular
  result if certain terms are met. But the terms reflect on the seeker's integrity as regards to both his
  sincerity and resolve, as well as to his faith in Christ.

  To be willing to rely on the promise of this verse as a test for the Book of Mormon's truthfulness, one
  must already have concluded somehow that its instruction is valid and its promise reliable. That is, one
  must already believe in the "truthfulness" of the verse. If the verse is true, then the only possible
  explanation for failing to obtain the result promised is a failure to meet the terms. (That is, one lacks a
  ‗sincere heart‘, and/or real ‗intent‘, and/or faith in Christ). If one believes the verse is true then one must
  obtain the answer promised, or face an embarrassing judgment of one's sincerity, intent, or faith in

  The seeker is forced into convincing himself he has had some kind of manifestation from God, just to
  vindicate his own character. Or, worse, he is moved to a frame of mind where he will gladly and
  indiscriminately embrace any supernatural manifestation as though it were from God. All the force of
  Scripture's revelation of the character of God testifies that God would not and does not use such
  manipulative mind and ego games against human frailty to bring them to believe the truth. Real truth
  does not need such machinations.

  3). The Doctrine and Covenants
The Doctrine and Covenants is the third standard work of the LDS church. It is a collection of
‗revelations‘, policies, letters, and statements given to the LDS Church. It contains such revelations as…

       (D & C 89) - known as the ‗Word of Wisdom‘ (which forbids LDS church members from drinking
        hot drinks).

       (D & C 132) - the ‗everlasting covenant of the plurality of wives‘, (the ‗everlastingness‘ of which
        only lasted 47 years until the First Declaration against polygamy was given (see below)), and

       (D & C 7) - a unique ‗revelation‘ that the Apostle John is still on the earth ―prophesying before
        nations‖(!) (Note: If this is true, then the church never „fell into apostasy‟ as Joseph Smith claimed,
        because John the apostle is still on earth representing the true church of Jesus Christ!)

All told, Doctrine and Covenants contains 136 ‗revelations‘ or ‗visions‘ given to the Presidents of the LDS
church although 135 of them are from Joseph Smith, and one other is from Brigham Young (D & C 136).
The Doctrine and Covenants also contains one declaration concerning ‗governments and laws in general‘
(D & C 134), and an account of the ‗Martyrdom of Joseph Smith the Prophet‘ (D & C 135). In addition
there are also two ‗Official Declarations‘ or ‗Manifestos‘ attached at the end of the Doctrine and Covenants

a) The First Declaration

This was issued on October 6th, 1890, by the 4th LDS President, Wilford Woodruff. The Declaration states
that the LDS church members should „refrain from contracting any marriage forbidden by the law of the
land‟. This ‗revelation‘ came after a period of approximately 30 years during which the US Government
had been legally manoeuvring to stamp out the widespread practice of Mormon polygamy.

In Doctrine and Covenants 132:4, given in the year 1843, Joseph Smith had revealed an „everlasting
covenant‟, in which he stated, „if ye abide not that covenant, then are ye damned‟. This covenant was the
‗plurality of wives‘ revelation and it brought in the practice of polygamy (or, technically, ‗polygyny‘ –
marriage to more than one wife). This doctrine made the Mormon Church extremely unpopular with non-
Mormons who lived alongside them, as i) they feared their wives would be taken away from them by the
Mormons, and ii) many of them held to Biblical Christian values of a man having only one lawful wife.

The practicing of polygyny was ultimately the reason why Mormons were heavily persecuted, and why
Brigham Young eventually led the bulk of the Church on a journey across America from Nauvoo, Illinois
to Salt Lake, Utah to escape the militant action against them.

In spite of the geographical separation of the Mormons from the majority of the US population (most US
Citizens at that time lived on the Eastern side of the USA), the US Congress began passing litigation to
prevent polygamy on American soil through the passing of the Morrill Act in 1862, signed by President
Abraham Lincoln. The Morrill Act outlined that all polygamous marital arrangements were illegal.

The further passing of the Edmunds-Tucker act of 1887, signed by president Grover Cleveland, followed
on from the Morrill Act. The Edmunds-Tucker Act allowed the USA government to declare the LDS
church to be ‗disincorporated‘ and that its property and any estate greater than $50,000 were to be
confiscated and ‗escheated to the United States‘. It was shortly after this Act was passed that the ‗First
Declaration‘ was ‗revealed‘ to Woodruff. As a result of it the LDS church attempted to eliminate the
practice of polygamy from amongst its members (although many Mormons continued the practice in spite
of the Declaration, and even today there are still many Mormon proponents and practitioners of polygamy
in the USA).

b) The Second Declaration

This was ‗revealed‘ to the 12th President, Spencer W. Kimball. It declares that „all worthy male members of
the Church may be ordained to the priesthood without regard for race or colour‟.

The LDS church has had a long history of racist statements and practices. Bruce McConkie wrote in
‗Mormon Doctrine‘ p 527, „Negroes in this life are denied the priesthood; under no circumstances can they
hold this delegation from the Almighty. The gospel message of salvation is not carried affirmatively to
them… Negroes are not equal with other races where the receipt of certain spiritual blessings are
concerned‟. [For more on Mormon racism, see also the Pearl of Great Price section below, and also Appendix 7].

The Church's policy of excluding blacks from the priesthood had stood against all attempts at reform during the
civil rights movement of the 1960‘s but then things happened to Brigham Young University's basketball
program in the 1970s. (During a game at Colorado State University, a Molotov cocktail was tossed onto the
court to protest the antiblack LDS tenets. A Stanford University official declared that if the B.Y.U. team ever
wanted to play Stanford again, the Mormon Church would have to "reinterpret God's word and establish
doctrines compatible with Stanford's policies".)
Shortly following this statement, Stanford cancelled all scheduled sports events with B.Y.U., not just its
basketball games. (In fact, the Western Athletic Conference nearly disbanded over the furore).
Additionally, anti-Mormons urged for boycotts of recordings of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and the
cancellation of vacations to Utah. The NAACP initiated several lawsuits against Mormon Boy Scout
troops, charging that church policy was foisting racism on minority Scouts. Worst of all for the LDS
church, the US Inland Revenue Service suggested that the racial policies of the Mormon Church might
justify a suspension of its tax-exempt status. Several professional consulting firms which the church had
previously hired for other matters suggested to church leaders that they reconsider the status of blacks in
the Mormon Church as part of a major overhaul of church policy.

Finally, on June 8, 1978, the Mormon President Spencer W. Kimball announced to the Saints that he had
received a ‗new revelation‘ which ended the ban on blacks in the priesthood. That same revelation
supposedly ‗came to his counselors and to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in the Temple, and then it
was presented to all of the other General Authorities who approved it unanimously‘, stated Kimball. (This
revelation is known to Mormons as The Second Great Accommodation).

4). The Pearl of Great Price

The Pearl of Great Price, the fourth Standard Work, was adopted by the LDS church on October 10, 1880
with the vote of a general conference of the church. It contains:

       Excerpts from Joseph Smith‘s translation of Genesis, called the book of Moses,

       Joseph Smith‘s translation of some Egyptian papyrus that he acquired in 1835 (and subsequently
        lost, although some pages were purportedly rediscovered in 1967), called the Book of Abraham;

       An excerpt from The Documentary History of the Church containing a letter written by Joseph
        Smith in 1838, called Joseph Smith—History; and

       An excerpt from another of Joseph Smith's letters called the Articles of Faith, thirteen statements
        of belief and doctrine.

       Excerpts from Joseph Smith‘s translation of Matthew 24, called Joseph Smith—Matthew;

(Note:- The original manuscripts of the ‗Joseph Smith translation of the Bible‘ remained in Nauvoo with the widow of Joseph
Smith after Brigham Young and the great majority of Mormons went west. Consequently the Utah Church could not publish this
work and viewed it with some suspicion when it was published by the RLDS Church (The Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter Day Saints - organized in 1860 – and now headquartered in Independence, Missouri).

Relations between the LDS (Utah) Church and Reorganized Church were naturally somewhat cool. When the Reorganization
published Joseph Smith's Bible translation in 1867 as the Holy Scriptures (with a later edition carrying the subtitle "Inspired
Version"), Utah Mormon leaders found themselves in somewhat of a quandary. LDS Church leaders were, of course, aware that
Joseph Smith had intended publication. But now that it had happened, the ill feelings between the two groups prevented the LDS
Church from fully embracing the RLDS work and RLDS archivists did not want to allow access to the manuscripts.

Eventually, feelings between the two groups moderated and when a new edition of the KJV was published by the LDS Church in
1979, many of the Joseph Smith alterations were included as footnotes and in an appendix).

It is in the Book of Abraham that it is ‗revealed‘ to the LDS church that it was ‗gods‘ who created the earth,
that man pre-existed as a spirit being, and that all humans on earth originally came from a planet called
Kolob where Elohim lives! The production of the Pearl of Great Price came about in this way…

On July 3rd of 1835, Joseph Smith purchased four Egyptian mummies and accompanying papyri for $2400
from Michael H. Chandler, a travelling antiquities dealer from Pennsylvania. Joseph wrote on July 5th: "I
commenced the translation of some of the characters or hieroglyphics, and much to our joy found that one
of the rolls contained the writings of Abraham. ... Truly we can say, the Lord is beginning to reveal the
abundance of peace and truth..."

From these papyrus scrolls, Smith translated The Book of Abraham. The text was first printed in three
issues of the newspaper ‗Times and Seasons‘ on March 1st, March 15th, and May 16th of 1842. Nine years
later, the Book of Abraham was bound with the Book of Moses and extracts from the history of Joseph
Smith to form The Pearl of Great Price. However, the contents of the Book of Abraham turned out to be

Roger Thompson in ‗The Mormon Church‘ summarizes thus: ―The Book of Abraham contained an
additional account of the creation of the world. It identified the planet Kolob, which is closest to where
God lives, and explained that spirits were created out of intelligence and that these spirits associated with
each other much as we do on earth. Some were more valiant and were leaders. A council of these leaders
planned the creation of the earth as a testing ground to see if the spirits would obey whatever God
commanded of them when they were not in God's. If they did obey, they would have additional glory
forever. Acting together, this council created the world under God's direction. The members of this council
were called gods. Abraham was one of them‟.

Joseph Smith's translation of the papyri laid down the metaphysical underpinnings of the LDS church. A
mainstay of the Mormon faith, the Law of Eternal Progression, explains: "As man is, God once was. As
God is, man may become." Elohim (the Mormon God) it turns out was born on another planet, matured,
and remained obedient to the Laws and Ordinances of the god over that planet, but was also once a man
with his own god above him, and so on. Elohim died, was then resurrected and judged by his god. He was
found worthy, raised to godhood, and given many righteous women as wives. He was sent with his wives to
his Celestial residence near the great star Kolob, somewhere in our galaxy, where he began to procreate and
beget spirit children.

When it was time for Elohim to prepare the earth for occupancy, Elohim asked his two eldest sons to
prepare plans. These brothers were Jesus and Lucifer. Elohim chose Jesus‘ plan, and He was raised to
godhood. Lucifer became angry and led one-third of his brothers and sisters in an open rebellion. They
battled against the third of their family who respected Elohim's decision. The final third agreed with
Elohim's decision, but didn't want to get involved. Eventually, Jesus‘ third won. Lucifer and his third were
cast out from Kolob and arrived here on earth as Satan and the demons. The third who fought for Jesus
came to earth as "fair and delightsome" people -- the more valiant, the blonder their hair, the whiter their
skin. The less valiant, the darker the complexion and hair.

The third group that were non-combatants in the war became ‗black‘ on the earth, born under the curse of
Cain. Early prophets of the Mormon Church taught that the mark of Cain was "a skin of blackness."
Because of this, it follows that the curse on all those who bore the mark was exclusion from the Aaronic
and Melchizedek priesthood orders (normally bestowed upon all faithful males). This meant that they could
not enter the Mormon Temple in Salt Lake City, nor could they become gods in the afterlife. In short, they
were disallowed full participation in the church.

In Journal of Discourses, Brigham Young is quoted as saying, "Shall I tell you the law of God in regard to
the African Race? If the White man who belongs to the chosen seed mixes his blood with the seed of Cain,
the penalty, under the law of God, is death on the spot. This will always be so." Brigham Young is quoted
elsewhere in the Journal as warning, "Cain slew his brother ... and the Lord put a mark upon him, which is
the flat nose and black skin." Additionally, it was taught that even "one drop of Negro blood" would
prevent a person from holding the priesthood or marrying in the temple. (ref. 2nd Declaration above).
For many years Joseph Smith's collection of papyri was lost, but on Nov. 27, 1967, the Mormon-owned
Deseret News announced that the "collection of papyrus manuscripts, long believed to have been destroyed
in the Chicago fire of 1871, was presented to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints here Monday
by the Metropolitan Museum of Art‖. Finally Joseph Smith‘s ability as a translator of ancient Egyptian
could be put to an authentic test.

In 1968 two Egyptologists from the University of Chicago's Oriental Institute, Professors John A. Wilson
and Klaus Baer, were able to translate the papyrus. However, once the Egyptologists completed the
translation, they found it contained absolutely nothing concerning Abraham or his religion. Instead, it
turned out to be a pagan funeral text known as the "Book of Breathings," a work which actually evolved
from the Egyptian Book of the Dead.

A translation by Egyptologist Klaus Baer, (at the time an Egyptologist at the University of Chicago), was
printed in Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Autumn 1968, pp. 119-20. He and his assistants
discovered The Book of Breathings did not come into existence until the later stages of Egyptian history -
just a few centuries before the time of Christ, or 1800 years after Abraham had lived!

Klaus Baer concluded concerning the "Sensen" fragment (from which Joseph Smith had translated the
entire Book of Abraham):- "Joseph Smith thought that this papyrus contained the Book of Abraham.
However, the fact that the papyrus Joseph Smith used as the basis for his Book of Abraham is in reality
the Book of Breathings cannot be disputed because the name "Book of Breathings" appears clearly on
the fourth line of the fragment”. (Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Autumn 1968, p. 111).

Smith‘s translation methods were also interesting as he had used only one papyrus of the bundle as the
basis for his entire translated text of the Book of Abraham. From this one papyrus the thirteenth and
fourteenth verses of Abraham 1 were translated from a single character resembling a backward „E‟. Smith
translated this one character into 76 words(!) including nine proper names and eight other pronouns. The
character for the Egyptian god ―Khons‖ (the name of an Egyptian moon god) was translated by Smith into
177 words in Abraham 1:16-19.

All told, the average number of words the Egyptologist used to convey the message in the Book of
Breathing text is eighty-seven, whereas Joseph Smith's rendition of the Book of Abraham contains
thousands of words!!

Since the original papyrus contains nothing about Abraham, some Mormon apologists have suggested that
Joseph Smith may have obtained the Book of Abraham by way of ‗direct revelation‘ and not from the
papyrus. However this creates a problem for the LDS church as Joseph Smith himself at the beginning of
the Book of Abraham asserts that it was a "Translation of the Book of Abraham written by his own hand
upon papyrus and found in the catacombs of Egypt." (Pearl of Great Price, The Book of Abraham,
Introduction). Of course, this incident was highly embarrassing for the LDS church and they have been
attempting to cover up this incident ever since!

The Living Prophet
When prophets and general authorities of the LDS church speak as "moved upon by the Holy Ghost", their
words are also considered to be modern-day scripture. This is particularly true of the president of the

One question raised of LDS revelations is why so few new ‗revelations‘ have been added to the Doctrine
and Covenants. (Since the time of Joseph Smith, there have only been 3 new revelations added – 1 from
Brigham Young, and the two ‗Declarations‘ outlined under the Doctrine and Covenants section above.
These Declarations, however, are specifically recorded as ‗Declarations‘ and not as ‗Revelations‘!) The
LDS church answers this question by stating that most of the knowledge needed to ‗restore‘ the true gospel
and church to the earth was revealed to Joseph Smith. Hence, there was a decreasing need for further
recorded revelation, although God can ‗still speak in this way if he chooses to do so through the Living

According to LDS teaching, Latter-day Saints believe literally in the principle of revelation from God to his
children. Individual members of the LDS church are entitled to divine revelation for confirmation of truths,
gaining knowledge or wisdom, meeting personal challenges, etc. Parents are entitled to revelation for
raising their families. Divine revelation for the direction of the entire Church comes from God to the
president of the Church, who is viewed by Latter-day Saints as a prophet in the same sense as Abraham,
Moses, Peter and other biblical leaders.


The Articles of Faith
This is a section of 13 ‗Articles‘ contained at the end of the Pearl of Great Price, a casual reading of which
might lead one to believe that the LDS church sounds entirely Christian. However, closer scrutiny of these
Articles reveals a number of theological differences between the LDS Church and traditional Christianity.

Article 2 states, „We believe that men will be punished for their own sins and not for Adam‟s
transgressions‟. This violates the teaching of of 1st Corinthians 15:22, that is, ‗As in Adam, all die…‘.

Article 4 states, „We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: first, Faith in the
Lord Jesus Christ; second, Repentance; third, Baptism for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands
for the gift of the Holy Ghost‟. According to the LDS church, baptism and the laying on of hands are
necessary for salvation. This violates traditional Christianity which teaches salvation by believing in Jesus
Christ alone (Romans 10:9,10; Galatians 3:1-2).

Article 6 states, „We believe in the same (emphasis added) organisation that existed in the Primitive
Church, namely, apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, evangelists, and so forth‟. However, in the LDS
church, their highest office is that of ‗Prophet‘ (in the 1st Presidency) and not that of Apostle. Also the LDS
church adds other non ecclesiastical roles into their structure such as ‗Patriarchs‘, and the office of
‗Evangelist‘ is missing from their organisational structure.

Article 8 states, „We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly; we also
believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God‟. In this article, he LDS church confuses ‗translation‘
with ‗interpretation‘. Manuscript copies of the Old and New Testaments are well documented and
researched, and modern Christian Bibles can be shown to be accurately translated by using these ancient
source documents - in spite of the Book of Mormon‘s claim and LDS beliefs that many parts are missing,
(1 Nephi 13:26-29). The same authenticity of translation, however, cannot be provided for the Book of
Mormon, as the gold plates from which they were purportedly translated are (reportedly) back in the
custody of the angel ‗Moroni‘. All the LDS church has to go on as to the accuracy of the translation of the
Book of Mormon is the testimony of one man - Joseph Smith. (Note: The testimonies of the 3 and the 8
witnesses do not relate to the accuracy of the translation of the Book of Mormon, but only that these
witnesses ‗saw the plates‘).

Article 10 states, „We believe in the literal gathering of Israel and in the restoration of the Ten tribes; that
Zion (the New Jerusalem) will be built upon the American continent; that Christ will reign personally upon
the earth…‟. This is a Mormon absurdity to claim Zion will be located is in America! No serious Biblical
scholar would presume to believe that the word Zion in the Bible means anything other than Jerusalem, the
Holy City of the King! Yet in Article 10, the LDS church boldly states Zion is in the USA! (This is
completely contradictory to scripture. Psalm 78:67,68 states clearly, „He also rejected the tent of Joseph,
and did not choose the tribe of Ephraim, but chose the tribe of Judah, Mount Zion which He loved’. Zion
is clearly in Jerusalem, not Missouri!)

Article 12 says, „We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers and magistrates, in obeying,
honouring, and sustaining the law‟. Even the historical records of the Mormon church that are publicly
available show that Joseph Smith, (who wrote the Articles of Faith) was clearly not one who ‗obeyed,
honoured or sustained the law‘, having been the initiator of public destruction of property, manslaughter,
and habitual polygamy!!

3 Levels of Heaven

The LDS church teaches that after judgment, there are three main kingdoms to which men may be assigned:
the Celestial Kingdom, the Terrestrial Kingdom, and the Telestial Kingdom. The differing glory of these
three levels of heaven is compared by analogy to the brightness of the ‗sun, moon, and stars‘ in the sky,
from their interpretation of 1st Corinthians 15:40,41).

The Celestial Kingdom is the highest kingdom, where the righteous will live with God and with their
families. As mentioned above, accountable individuals must repent, be baptized, and follow Jesus Christ to
gain entrance to the Celestial Kingdom; all children who die before the age of accountability automatically
inherit the celestial kingdom. This kingdom includes multiple degrees of glory, the highest of which is
exaltation. Exaltation is the reward which Latter-day Saints believe is given to the righteous. Through
exaltation, a person can eventually become like Jesus Christ, or as it is expressed in scripture, a joint-heir
with Him. (See Romans 8:17.)

The Terrestrial Kingdom is for those good people who are not valiant in following Jesus and those who do
not accept the Gospel. This kingdom is one of great glory, but without the presence of God the Father. An
ultimate willingness to keep the Ten Commandments is considered essential to enter this kingdom.

The Telestial Kingdom is the kingdom for murderers, adulterers, and others who do not accept the Gospel
of Jesus Christ. This is also considered a kingdom of glory and has been described as being much better
than even earthly life. All those who do not qualify for a higher degree of glory will enter this kingdom
unless they deny the Holy Ghost, a sin (it is believed) that very few people are able to commit.

Those few people who ‗willfully deny and contend against the Holy Ghost‘, after gaining a full knowledge
of the Gospel, inherit no glory. Most members of the Church refer to this state as Outer Darkness (not to be
confused with traditional Christianity's definition of the term). An individual so banished is called a Son of
Perdition. Forgiveness is not possible for these souls, though they will be resurrected.

Before people dwell eternally in their assigned kingdom of glory, they go through resurrection and
judgment before a panel consisting of Elohim, Jesus Christ and Joseph Smith. (Should there be any
contention between these 3 gods, Joseph Smith has the casting vote!) Those who have not been offered the
chance to hear the doctrines of Jesus Christ during life on Earth will have the opportunity to do so prior to
the judgment.



The Church of Jesus Christ practices baptism by immersion in water. Baptism is recognized by the LDS

church only when performed by one holding at least the office of a Priest in the Aaronic Priesthood. They
believe a person who repents and is baptized has all prior sins remitted.

In Latter-day Saint families, children are typically baptized soon after their eighth birthday. The age of eight
was given in ‗latter-day revelation‘ (D & C 68:27) as the age when children become accountable for their
sins - that is, they are able to discern between right and wrong.

If a person is unable to discern between right and wrong (e.g. those with severe mental retardation) they are
not baptized regardless of their age; they are viewed as fully saved through the Atonement of Christ. The
Book of Mormon forbids the practice of infant baptism. (Moroni 8:4-23.)

Baptism for the Dead

Because they believe all people must be baptized to be saved, Mormons also practice baptism for the dead.
(This widespread Mormon practice is based heavily on 1st Corinthians 15:29, „Otherwise, what will those
do who are baptised for the dead? If the dead are not raised at all, why then are they baptised for them?‟)
This ordinance is a baptism by proxy, performed in one of the many Mormon temples around the world.
The baptism is believed to only take effect if the deceased person accepts the ordinance.

Inside a Mormon temple there is a large baptismal font, large enough to accommodate several people
standing waist-deep in water. (The font rests on the backs of twelve life-size sculpted oxen in a special
room). It is here that baptisms for the dead are performed.

The proxies are usually a group of teen-age Mormons who have travelled from their homes in a group for a
temple excursion. Dressed in white, they line up to enter the waters one by one to be immersed by the
officiators with the short baptismal prayer: "Having authority given me of Jesus Christ, I baptize you for
and in behalf of N. N., who is dead, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.
Amen." The name of the dead person is read from a list to the officiator just before the immersion.

One proxy may be baptized quickly in succession for ten or fifteen dead people. After the baptisms, two
other officiators confirm the newly baptized dead persons as members of the Mormon church(!) and confer
upon them the gift of the Holy Ghost, by placing their hands upon the head of each proxy, with a similar
short pronouncement. Hundreds of such baptisms and confirmations can be performed in a few hours. It is
an efficient, production-line operation.

Apparently baptism for the dead for some deceased persons has been done again and again. (The well-
known Protestant apologist and scholar C. S. Lewis, for example, has been baptized into the Mormon
church posthumously five times, has been endowed four times, has been sealed to his parents six times, and
sealed to his wife four times - twice under two different names, as the Mormons seem to think that Lewis
was married to two different women. This is apparently not a unique example...!)

Gift of the Holy Ghost
Following baptism by immersion, individuals are confirmed members of the church and given ‗the gift of
the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands‘ by priesthood-bearers. (Articles of Faith, Article 4). This
‗blessing‘ entitles the newly confirmed recipient to have the ‗constant companionship of the Holy Ghost as
a guide and guardian‘ so long as the recipient lives worthy of the gift.

Members believe that those who have not been confirmed may still receive inspiration and a witness from
the Holy Ghost but are not entitled to constant companionship available through the gift of the Holy Ghost.


The Church Genealogy Library in Salt Lake City
Mormons operate the largest genealogical library in the world containing millions of volumes of birth,
marriage, death, and other records. In addition, the Church obligates Latter-day Saints to stand as proxies
for their deceased ancestors in sacred rites such as baptism and eternal marriage. Genealogical research is
an important aspect of Latter-day Saint tradition, stemming from a doctrinal mandate for church members
to research their family tree and perform vicarious ordinances for their ancestors.

Church members are able to do genealogical work in various Family History Centers located throughout
the world usually in Latter-day Saint chapels. In addition to the more common events that genealogy
records typically contain (such as births, deaths, and marriages), church records also contain details
regarding the dates of baptism, endowment, and sealing to spouse, parent, and child, as well as the temple
in which each vicarious ordinance occurred.


The Salt Lake City Temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
As of year-end 2002, there were 114 operating Mormon temples worldwide, with another 14 under
construction or approved (albeit less elaborate than the 50 temples in existence at the end of 1997).
(Approximately 65,000 LDS members must be in an immediate area to qualify for a temple.) Temples are
required for Mormon marriages and for proxy baptisms of ancestors. Most people assume Mormon temples

are places of worship, however this is not true. Secret, occult rituals for the living and the dead are
performed there, and Mormons think they must perform them to have eternal life.

In addition to Sunday worship, some faithful members of the church participate in ordinances in temples,
including baptisms for the dead, endowments, and eternal marriage. Adult members who receive their
endowments in the temple also receive the ‗temple garment‘, which they wear under their daily clothing.

The LDS church considers the temple ordinances exceptionally sacred. As such, they do not publicly
release the details of the temple proceedings and expect that members also do not discuss them outside the
temple. This is true of the significance of the temple garment as well. Members of The Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter-day Saints make covenants and perform special instructions, rituals and ordinances within
temples. Some of these include:
      Baptism for the dead
      Confirmation
      Ordination to some higher offices of the priesthood (and ordination to the office of Elder on behalf
       of the dead)
      Washing and anointing (or "Initiatory" ordinances)
      The Endowment
      Eternal marriage sealings and time-only marriages
      The Prayer circle
      The Hosanna Shout (Mormons stand and in unison shout the words "Hosanna, Hosanna, Hosanna
       to God and the Lamb. Amen, Amen, and Amen," repeating them three times. This is usually
       accompanied by the rhythmic waving of white handkerchiefs with uplifted hands).
      Feet washing (rare)
      The Second Anointing (rare)

These ordinances may be performed either on behalf of the participant, or by "proxy" on behalf of the dead.
Some of these ordinances are normally performed outside of temples, but when performed on behalf of the
dead, they are performed exclusively in temples. This includes baptism, confirmation, and ordination to the
The ordinances at the approximately 68 Mormon temples worldwide are not open to the general public. An
LDS church manual called Preparing to Enter the Holy Temple explains that Latter-day Saints "do not
discuss the temple ordinances outside the temples." Further, the manual states:
"It was never intended that knowledge of these temple ceremonies would be limited to a select few who
would be obliged to ensure that others never learn of them. It is quite the opposite, in fact. With great effort
the church urges every soul to qualify and prepare for the temple experience."

Weekly worship services, including sacrament meetings, are held on Sundays, in meetinghouses, also
referred to as "chapels" or "stake centers", although the chapel is actually only one component of the
meetinghouse. All people, regardless of belief or standing in the church are welcome to attend. The
sacrament (similar to Communion, the Lord's Supper, or the Eucharist in other churches) is offered weekly.
Latter-day Saints come together in meetinghouses for various activities throughout the week (except
Mondays, which are reserved for family time).

i) Sunday Services

Congregations for Sunday services are grouped geographically, with larger (~200 to ~400 people)
congregations known as wards, and smaller (2 through ~200 people) congregations known as branches.

Sunday services consist of a three-hour block of time divided into three segments. The primary Sunday
service is sacrament meeting, which is slightly more than an hour in length, and attended by the combined
congregation. The foremost purpose of sacrament meeting is the blessing and passing of the sacrament —
consecrated bread and water in remembrance of the body and blood of Christ — to members of the Church.
After the sacrament, the service usually consists of two or three "talks" (lay sermons) prepared and
delivered by members of the congregation. Hymns (accompanied by piano or organ) are sung throughout
the service, as a form of worship through music. Once a month, usually on the first Sunday, instead of
prepared talks, members are invited to bear their testimonies about gospel principles. These testimonies are
generally impromptu statements of personal faith.

During the other two segments, the congregation divides into smaller groups based on age and/or gender.
The church publishes manuals for each type of class, usually including a teacher's manual as well as a
student booklet for youth and adult classes.

Sunday School classes are grouped by age and sometimes by background. The most common adult Sunday
School class is Gospel Doctrine, which meets each week and consists of a teacher presenting a gospel
message drawn from the Scriptures, with participation from class members. A second adult class that meets
most weeks is Gospel Essentials, designed for new members and non-members who are interested in
learning more about the Church (often referred to as investigators).

Additional adult classes are held at various times, depending on the specific needs of each congregation.
These classes include topics such as Family Relations, Family History, Teacher Preparation, and Temple
Preparation. Youth Sunday School classes are divided by age (12-13, 14-15, and 16-18). These classes may
be combined if class sizes are small.

In addition to Sacrament Meeting and Sunday School, a third block of meetings is held where attendance is
based on age and sex. Men and boys age 12 and up attend priesthood classes, women attend Relief Society,
and girls ages 12-18 attend Young Women. The Young Women group is further divided into Beehive (ages
12-13), Mia Maid (ages 14-15), and Laurel (ages 16-18) classes. Although all men and boys meet together
briefly at the beginning of the hour for a prayer, hymn, and announcements, they then separate into classes.

 The men separate by priesthood office to attend Elder's Quorum or High Priest's Group, the latter usually
being older men and/or those who have held leadership positions in the Church. Youth are likewise divided
into priesthood quorums: Deacons (ages 12-13), Teachers (ages 14-15), and Priests (ages 16-18). Classes
may be combined if class sizes are small.

Children younger than 12 attend Primary, which spans the two time blocks described above. Primary is
divided into two large groups: Senior Primary (ages 8-12) and Junior Primary (ages 4-7); young children
from 18 months to 3 years of age attend nursery class. Primary classes generally consist of all the children
who were born in the same year. Usually one half of the Primary meets in separate classes while the other
half meets together in sharing and singing time, and at the end of the hour, the two are reversed.

Women usually attend wearing skirts or dresses, while men wear suits or dress shirts (preferably white) and
ties. However, this dress code is not required; people in different attire are also welcome.

ii) Young Men's/Young Women's

Young men and women, aged 12 to 18, often have an additional meeting during the week (previously
referred to as Mutual or MIA, which were short for Mutual Improvement Association) which can involve
an activity, game, service project, or instruction. Usually, the young men participate in Boy Scouts of
America programs, grouped by age.

iii) Home, Family, and Personal Enrichment

Four times a year the adult women (members of the Church's Relief Society) attend a Home, Family, and
Personal Enrichment Meeting (formerly known as Homemaking Meeting). The meeting may consist of a
service project, or of attending a social event, or of various classes being offered. In addition, Enrichment
activities are offered (weekly, monthly, or as determined by ward Relief Society leaders) for women with
similar needs and interests.

iv) Other Meetings and Chapel Uses

In addition to these regularly scheduled meetings, additional meetings are frequently held at the
meetinghouse. Auxiliary officers may conduct leadership meetings or host training sessions and classes.
The ward or branch community may schedule social activities at the meetinghouse, including dances,
dinners, holiday parties and musical presentations.

Other popular activities are basketball, family history conferences, youth conferences, youth dances and
various personal improvement classes. Church members may also reserve the building for personal or
family use, to accommodate such events as music recitals, family reunions, wedding receptions, or funerals.


The LDS Church has one of the most active missionary programs of any world church. As of 31 December
2005 there were in excess of 52,000 full-time LDS missionaries serving without pay around the world.
They serve for up to two years, frequently learning another language.
Approximately 76 percent of all current missionaries are young men aged between 19 to 26, 18 percent are
women (aged 21 years and older), and 7 percent are older married couples with no dependent children. The
number of retired couples who are joining to serve missions is increasing, with many couples serving on
more than one mission.
Missionary work is a fundamental principle of the Church, and has become one of the most readily
identifiable characteristics of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Church headquarters assigns
missionaries to their area of work, which can be in any part of the world where governments allow them. It
also directs the missionary whether to focus on proselytizing, humanitarian work, or family history work.

Missionaries or their families generally cover the major costs of serving a mission. Missionaries called
from developing nations may receive needed financial assistance from the general missionary fund of the
Church. This assistance covers only basic living costs, as the Church has no paid ministry and no one is
paid for missionary service.

The young men and women who become full-time missionaries for the LDS church begin their service at
one of the Church‘s 16 missionary training centres (MTC). The Provo, Utah MTC is, by far, the largest.
Each week approximately 500 missionaries enter and depart the Provo MTC and between 2,700 and 3,000
missionaries usually reside at the Provo MTC.

 The length of stay for missionaries at the MTC varies from 3 to 10 weeks, depending on the ‗language
requirement‘ of their mission. Missionaries are kept very busy with class work and meetings throughout a
normal day. Weekly devotionals and firesides are held in which General Authorities, Missionary
Department leaders, the MTC presidency and their wives instruct and motivate the missionaries. At the
MTC, Mormon missionaries have the opportunity to attend the Temple and participate in weekly service
projects. They also have to exercise daily in the gym five times a week.

At the MTC the missionaries are paired with their ‗mission partner‘. This will be the person they spend the
next two years with and who they will ‗bear their testimony with‘. (Latter-day Saints often refer to their
personal faith as their "testimony" and refer to telling others on the mission field about their faith as
"bearing testimony").

Apart from dropping off their son or daughter at the MTC, family members are not allowed to visit them
while they attend the MTC. Also missionaries are not allowed to contact or be contacted by family
members; any communications must come through written letters only. (The LDS church claims that
family visits and phone calls ‗distracts‘ the missionaries from the task at hand). Missionaries are also not
allowed to be excused from the MTC to attend funerals, marriages, farewells, baptisms, or other family

Missionaries who attend an MTC are not allowed to bring laptops or other computers with them, nor
cellular phones, electronic planners (such as PDA‘s), camcorders or video equipment, radios, clock radios,
musical instruments, games, cards, or even footballs into the MTC(!) (They are allowed to bring a cassette
player if they are learning a second language. However, they are not allowed to bring a backpack,
briefcase, or similar carrying case with them. An „approved proselyting shoulder bag‟ or bicycle
saddlebag is available for purchase at all MTC‟s for about $30 US).

Personal Preparation
The LDS church strongly encourages every family to be prepared for disasters. Members are encouraged to
plant gardens and to store a year's supply of food. This instruction comes from some loose injunctions in
Doctrine and Covenants (e.g. D & C 78:13,14; D& C 29:16; D & C 1:12) to ‗prepare‘ for a disaster.

Ezra Taft Benson, 13th President of the church, also spoke these words; “And what about family
preparedness? Family preparedness has always been an essential welfare principle in perfecting the
Saints. Are each of us and our families following, where permitted, the long-standing counsel to have
sufficient food, clothing, and where possible, fuel on hand to last at least one year? (Ezra Taft Benson,
April Conference, 1988)
If you are a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, you are counselled by ‗numerous
prophets‘ to put aside a year's supply of food and other necessities; to have a 72-hour kit, and to become

The LDS believe that being prepared is a good idea. They say there are ‗so many occasions when the
material goods and/or skills associated with preparedness would come in handy‘. Quoting Ezra Benson
again, "The revelation to store food may be as essential to our temporal salvation today as boarding the
ark was to the people in the days of Noah."

Polygamy (discontinued)
At one time in its early history, the Church endorsed a form of polygamy called "plural marriage," but the
LDS claims this is no longer the case. Joseph Smith, Brigham Young, and other early members and leaders
of the Church were married to more than one wife, however the practice was officially withdrawn as stated
in a declaration called "The Manifesto" which was given by President Wilford Woodruff in 1890 (see
Official Declaration 1), and which advised Church members to obey the marriage laws of their land.

                                Brigham Young pictured with 21of his 27 wives

After the Manifesto, Church members living in Mexico and Canada (in polygamist enclaves) continued the
practice of plural marriage. The Church's position was reiterated and clarified in 1890 (commonly referred
to as "The First Manifesto"), with an additional request that no church members enter into any form of
plural marriage, regardless of their location, local customs, or legality. Today, members of The Church of
Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints found to be engaging in multiple marriage relationships are
excommunicated. Converts from areas where polygamy is an accepted practice typically must end such

The church has repeatedly stated that members who engage in multiple simultaneous marriages will be
excommunicated. Excommunication is the most severe disciplinary action the church undertakes. The
church has made it clear that it is the prerogative of the government to enforce marriage laws and the
church does not involve itself in this endeavor.

Although not practiced at the moment, a revelation on the doctrine of plural marriage is still part of the
LDS scriptures in Doctrine and Covenants section 132, and many church members still believe that the
principle of plural marriage is an eternal truth and will be practiced in the afterlife.

The LDS Church does not use the cross or crucifix as a symbol of faith. This is seen as avoiding emphasis
on Jesus' death as opposed to his life and resurrection. No pictures or icons are depicted in the chapel
proper, as policy, to avoid an image becoming the focus of worship rather than the reality of God.
However, images such as paintings of Christ and photographs of LDS temples are common in the foyers of
church buildings.

One of the most commonly used visual symbols of the Church is the trumpeting angel Moroni, proclaiming
the ‗restoration‘ of the "true gospel" to the earth (usually identified as the angel mentioned in Revelation
14:6–7), and a statue depicting the angel often tops the tallest spire of LDS temples. Other common
symbols associated with the Church are the letters ‗CTR‘, meaning "Choose the Right", often depicted in a
shield logo, and images of the Salt Lake City temple.

The Word of Wisdom
The Word of Wisdom (from Doctrine and Covenants 89) is considered to be one of the most important
‗revelations‘ in the Mormon Church. The Word of Wisdom essentially forbids the use of hot drinks, strong
drinks and tobacco. The Mormon Church today interprets hot drinks to mean tea and coffee. It would
appear, however, that in the early history of the Church all hot drinks were forbidden.

On April 7, 1868, the Mormon Apostle George Q. Cannon stated that chocolate drinks and hot soups were
forbidden: "We are told, and very plainly too, that hot drinks--tea, coffee, chocolate, cocoa and all drinks of
this kind are not good for man....we must feed our children properly.... We must not permit them to drink
liquor or hot drinks, or hot soups or to use tobacco or other articles that are injurious." (Journal of
Discourses, Vol. 12, pp. 221 & 223)

Even though the revelation uses only the words "hot drinks", the Mormon Church today interprets this to
mean drinks that contain caffeine. In other words, the emphasis is no longer on whether the drink is hot or
cold, but rather how much caffeine it contains. Chocolate drinks, on the other hand, even though they are
hot and contain a small amount of caffeine, are no longer forbidden. Although some portions of Joseph
Smith's Word of Wisdom are stressed by the Mormon leaders, other portions are almost ignored. The
Mormon writer John J. Stewart states: "The admonition to eat ‗little meat‟ is largely ignored, as are some
other points of the revelation." (Joseph Smith the Mormon Prophet, p. 90)

A Mormon who continues to break the Word of Wisdom is considered to be ‗weak in the faith‘. Breaking
the Word of Wisdom is considered a sin which can bar a person from the Temple. In order to get a Temple
Recommend a person is required to answer this question: "Q 4:- Do you keep the Word of Wisdom?"
(Temple Recommend Book)

Joseph Fielding Smith, tenth President of the Mormon Church, claims that the habit of drinking tea can
"bar" a person from the "celestial kingdom of God": "Salvation and a cup of brethren, if you drink
coffee or tea, or take tobacco, are you letting a cup of tea or a little tobacco stand in the road and bar you
from the celestial kingdom of God, where you might otherwise have received a fullness of glory?... There is
not anything that is little in this world in the aggregate. One cup of tea, then it is another cup of tea and
another cup of tea, and when you get them all together, they are not so little." (Doctrines of Salvation, Vol.
2, p. 16).

In spite of the ‗Prophet‘ Joseph Smith‘s Word of Wisdom revelation, there are numerous historical
accounts that he, himself, had difficulty keeping it, as he was often disposed to drinking alcoholic

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are expected to tithe 10% of their income to
the church. This money is usually collected each month by the bishop of the ward during his visitation
rounds (i.e. Mormons do not pass around a collection plate during their services).

If you should decide to become a member of the LDS church, although you will initially find yourself
warmly accepted by a lively community of healthy, active and generally supportive people, many of whom
are very happy in Mormonism and could not imagine their lives without it, there is another side:

      You will be continually reminded that to enter the highest degree of heaven (the "Celestial
       Kingdom"), you will have to go through the endowment ceremony in the temple and have your
       marriage to your Mormon spouse "sealed." (If your spouse is not Mormon, or if you are not
       married, you cannot enter the highest degree of heaven.) To get permission to have these
       ceremonies performed in the temple, you must prove yourself to be a faithful and obedient member
       of the church and do everything commanded by the church authorities, from the Prophet down to
       the local level. You will have to undergo a personal "worthiness" interview with the local church
       authorities inquiring into your private life and your religious and social activities.

      You will be expected to donate at least ten percent of your income to the church. Other donations
       will also be expected as the need arises. You will never see an accounting of how this money is
       spent, or how much the church receives, or anything at all about its financial condition as the church
       keeps its finances secret, even from its members.

      You will be expected to give up the use of alcohol, tobacco, coffee, and tea and begin storing one
       year‘s supply of food.

      You will be expected to fulfill any work assignment given to you. These assignments may be
       teaching, record keeping, janitorial work, cannery or farm work, helping in the Sunday nursery - any
       job that needs to be done. Each task you perform successfully will make you eligible for others,
       with more responsibility and more demands upon your time. The members who perform these jobs,
       even those involving sensitive pastoral counseling, receive no formal training whatsoever (there is
       no paid, trained clergy). You will be told that God has called you to your assignments. (Many

    Mormons find much of their spare time taken up with church work, trying to fulfill the numerous
    assignments that have been given them).

   You will be expected to be unquestioningly obedient to church authorities in whatever they might
    tell you to do. "Follow the Brethren" is the slogan, and it means to follow without doubt or
    question. Discussion of whether a decree from above is correct is discouraged. You will be
    expected to have faith that the leaders cannot possibly lead you astray. Even if they should tell you
    something which contradicts what a previous prophet may have said, you will be told "A living
    prophet takes precedence over a dead prophet."

   You will be able to "vote" on those who have been called to positions of authority over you, but the
    voting will be by the show of hands in a public meeting. Only one candidate for each office will be
    voted on (the one "called by God"). The voting is therefore almost always unanimous in favor of the

   You will be advised not to read any material which is "not faith-promoting," that is, which may be
    critical or questioning of the church or its leaders, or which might place the church or its leaders in
    an unfavorable light.

   You will be advised not to associate with "apostates," that is, former Mormons. (You will be asked
    in your "worthiness" interview about this.)

   If you are unmarried, you will be encouraged to marry a good Mormon as soon as possible. When
    you do marry, in a wedding ceremony in the temple, your non-Mormon family members and friends
    will not be allowed to attend the ceremony, because only "worthy" Mormons are allowed to enter
    the temple.

   If you are a male over 12 years of age and "worthy" (that is, if you are obedient, attend meetings,
    etc.), you will be ordained to one of the levels of priesthood, and, if you continue to be faithful and
    obedient, you will gradually advance through the priesthood ranks. If you are female, you will
    receive the benefits of priesthood authority only indirectly, through your Mormon father or your
    Mormon husband. The role of the Mormon woman is to be a wife and mother and to obey and
    honor her priest husband (or father).

   If you prove yourself to be faithful, hard working and obedient, you will eventually be considered
    worthy to "receive your endowment" in a Mormon temple. You will not be told in advance exactly
    what to expect in this lengthy ceremony, except that the details of the ritual are secret (Mormons
    prefer to say they are just "sacred," but they treat them as though they are secret). As part of that
    ceremony you will be required to swear a number of oaths - the penalty for violation of which is no
    longer stated, but until 1990 was death by various bloody methods, such as having your throat slit
    from ear to ear. You will be given the secret signs and passwords which are required to enter
    heaven. (Although most Mormons who have not received the endowment know very little about the
    ceremony, the entire liturgy is now available on the Internet to Mormon and non-Mormon alike.)

   After receiving the endowment you will be required to wear a special undergarment at all times.

   If you should ever decide that you made a mistake in joining the church and then leave it, you will
    probably find (judging from the experiences of others who have done so) that many of your
    Mormon friends will abandon and shun you. If you are unable to convince your family members to
    leave the church with you, you will find that the church has broken up your family and your
    relationship with them may never recover.

                              Appendix 1 – How to Respond to Mormons

Most contact with Mormons will occur when they appear on your doorstep one day. Do not be deceived
into thinking that because you have the truth you will be able to ‗convert‘ them on your doorstep. (There is
no record in history of anyone ever seeing this happen!) What you should be aiming for is to show them
love and grace in how you speak to them, and to attempt to get them to begin to question their
organisation‘s peculiar beliefs, and especially why the Book of Mormon contradicts later Mormon writings
such at the Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price.

The following are some action steps that a Christian who is reasonably versed in Mormon theology may
take to address any Mormon missionaries who visit your home.

   i)        Pray (preferably before you open the door if possible!)

   ii)       Consider what you want to achieve (i.e. time and reality constraints). Remember; they are
             coming to ‗convert you‘… You will NOT convert them in a one-off encounter.

   iii)      If you are familiar with Mormon theology and are reasonably confident in Mormon beliefs, it
             can be helpful to cover a few key verses from their own writings with them. Under most
             circumstances, it is usually best to keep the conversation relaxed and focused on just a few
             key differences between the Book of Mormon and the later writings of Joseph Smith (such as
             the Doctrine and Covenants and The Pearl of Great Price). A good question to start with is…
             ―Is the Book of Mormon inspired of God and ‗the most correct of any book on the
             earth…‘ as Joseph Smith testified?‖ (They should respond ‗Yes‘. If they don‘t, show them
             the ‗Introduction to the Book of Mormon paragraph 6)

   iv)       Ask, ‗Can you show me where in the Book of Mormon does it teach your concepts, that
             the Trinity doesn‘t exist; that there are many gods; that God was once a man and is still
             ‗progressing‘, and that I must trust in the Prophet Joseph Smith to save me?‘

   v)       Refer them to the following passages in the Book of Mormon
           o The last sentence of the ‗three witnesses‘ testimony found in the introduction (the
             Father and the Son and the Holy Ghost is one God)
           o Mosaiah 15:1-5 (the Son and the Father are one God)
           o 2 Nephi 31:21 (the Father, Son and Holy Ghost is one God)
           o Alma 11:22-29 (Zeezrom asks, „Is there more than one God?‟. Amulek replies, „No‟)
           o Mormon 9:8-10, 19 (God is the same yesterday, today and forever and cannot change)
           o 2 Nephi 28:31 („Cursed is he that putteth his trust in man...‟ What group puts more trust in
             man than the LDS church and their faith in Joseph Smith?!!)

   vi)       Ask them, ‘How is it that your book supports my Christian beliefs, but it doesn’t support
             your own..?

   vii)      Take the Book of Mormon off them (even if only to dispose of it). However, under no
             circumstances should you pray the prayer of Moroni 10:4.

   viii)     (After they leave) Pray for the Holy Spirit to use the things you shared so that they begin to
             question their beliefs and their organisation, and for protection against occultic spirits and
             forces that may attempt to influence you towards Mormonism as a result of your encounter.

         Appendix 2 - Contradictions between the Book of Mormon and the Bible

          The Book of Mormon Says...                                      The Bible Says...

Salvation is by grace and works.                          Salvation is by grace alone.

2 Nephi 25:23                                             Ephesians 2:8&9

The Fall of man was a necessary part of God's             The Fall of man was a violation of God's
plan.                                                     command.

2 Nephi 2:23-25                                           Romans 5:12-14

Jesus was born at Jerusalem                               Jesus was born in Bethlehem.

Alma 7:10                                                 Matthew 2:1

The Gospel, Church, and Christianity existed prior        The Gospel, Church, and Christianity began
to the time of Christ (in the Americas)                   following the time of Christ.

2 Nephi 26:12                                             Matthew 16:18

Children are born without any sin.                        Children are born with original sin.

Moroni 8:8                                                Psalm 51:5

The priesthood did not need to be Levitical.              The priesthood could only be through the
                                                          lineage of Aaron, a Levite.
2 Nephi 5:26 (Lehi was of the tribe of Joseph.)
                                                          Numbers 3:9-10

It was commanded to build temples in the                  Jerusalem was explicitly chosen by God as the
Americas.                                                 one place for the temple.

Alma 16:13                                                1 Kings 8:44-48

At Christ's crucifixion, there was three days of          At Christ's crucifixion, there were three hours of
darkness.                                                 darkness.

Helaman 14:27                                             Luke 23:44

At the tower of Babel the Jaredites had a separate        At the tower of Babel there was one language,
language which was spared the confusion of                which was then confused by God.
                                                          Genesis 11:1
Ether 1:34-35

Appendix 3 - Presidents of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

    Joseph Smith          Brigham                                      Wilford
                                                 John Taylor
    Jr.                   Young                                        Woodruff
                                                 3rd President
    1st President         2nd President                                4th President
    Served:               Served:                                      Served:
    1830–1844             1847–1877                                    1887–1898

    Lorenzo               Joseph F.              Heber J.              George Albert
    Snow                  Smith,                 Grant                 Smith
    5th President         6th President          7th President         8th President
    Served:               Served:                Served:               Served:
    1898–1901             1901–1918              1918–1945             1945–1951

    David O.                                     Harold B. Lee         Spencer W.
    McKay                                        11th                  Kimball
    9th President                                President             12th President
                          10th President
    Served:                                      Served:               Served:
    1951–1970                                    1972–1973             1973–1985

                                                 Gordon B.
    Ezra Taft             Howard W.
    Benson                Hunter
    13th President        14th President
    Served:               Served:
    1985–1994             1994–1995

                       Appendix 4 - The More Important Mormon Groups
1. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Salt Lake City, Utah, USA)

2. The Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (RLDS) (Independence, Missouri,
USA) now renamed to the Community of Christ, under president W. Grant McMurray.

This group came into existence in the 1850s under the leadership of Joseph Smith‘s son, Joseph Smith III.
This group believes Joseph Smith II was nominated by the founding Joseph Smith as his successor. The
Utah-based LDS group, however, disagrees.

Interestingly, this group owns the historical Mormon properties in Kirtland, Ohio; this being the outcome
of court case with the LDS group, the courts having decided that the RLDS had more claim (from a
doctrinal standpoint) to be the church founded by Joseph Smith Jr. than the Utah–based LDS group.

In the 1970's the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints began to experience what many
lay members considered to be serious problems with the hierarchy of the church trying to change the
church. The main changes were "a major shift in the General Church teachings a de-emphasis of the Book
of Mormon, the Second Advent and celestial life in favor of more conventional Protestant-like Christianity"
(Saints Herald, January 1974, p. 52).

What Is The Difference between the LDS and the RLDS (now Community of Christ)?

-Salt Lake City based LDS uses KJV or Joseph Smith‘s Translation (aka the "Inspired Version"); their
second President, Brigham Young, taught God the Father was once a man (Adam), a doctrine which has
never been revoked; teaches "eternal progression" to godhood; use secret temple rites; practices baptism for
the dead; temple marriage is for eternity; God the Father Son and Holy Spirit are three separate "Gods";
accepts the Pearl of Great Price as Scripture.

Independence Missouri- based RLDS (now Community of Christ): Uses the "Inspired Version"; do not
believe God was once a man; does not believe in "eternal progression" claim never to have used secret
temple rites; claim Zion is Missouri; does not and never did, condone baptism for the dead; marriage only
for earthly life; believes God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit exists in three different "modes" not Persons;
rejects the Pearl of Great Price.

Both sects, of course, claim to be the "restored" church. When the LDS missionaries come knocking, they
will not tell you that the second largest Mormon group (the Community of Christ) believes much different
teachings than the Utah-based LDS group.

3. Church of Christ -Temple Lot (Temple Lot, Independence, Missouri)- One early leader, Granville
Hedrick, called Joseph Smith a "fallen prophet". This group teaches that there has been apostasy from the
restored gospel faith. This group was also involved in a lawsuit with the RLDS over ownership of the
Temple Lot. By 1869 they purchased the original "temple lot" in Independence Missouri.

How does the Temple Lot church differ doctrinally from the LDS and RLDS?

In contrast to the LDS and RLDS, the Temple Lot group have no first presidency, high priests or patriarchs,
and no prophet as leader (having 12 "apostles" instead). In common with the RLDS group, they reject the
Pearl of Great Price, the doctrines of celestial marriage and eternal progression, and baptism for the dead.

                         Appendix 5 - Joseph Smith‘s Occult background
Historians have undertaken detailed evaluations of Smith, focusing careful attention towards any
overlooked associations he might have had with things magical. Investigators soon brought to the surface a
wealth of unquestionably genuine historical evidence substantiating that Smith and his early followers had
multiple involvements with
magic, irregular Freemasonry,
and traditions generally termed

Beginning in his late-
adolescent years Joseph was
first recognized by others to
have paranormal abilities, and
between 1822 and 1827 he was
enlisted to act as "seer" for
several groups engaged in
treasure digging. Not only did
he possessed a "seer stone" into
which he could gaze and locate
things lost or hidden in the
earth, but it has recently
became evident this same stone
was probably the "Urim and
Thummim" later used to "translate" portions of the Book of Mormon. (According to contemporary
accounts of the book's writing, Joseph would place his "seer stone" in the crown of his hat, and then bend
forward with his arms upon his knees and his face buried in the hat. Gazing into the stone while in this
posture, he would visualize and then dictate the words to a scribe seated nearby).

Occult aspects in Joseph Smith‘s new religion were openly evident. The most obvious was its irregular
Masonic connections. In 1842, two years before his death, Joseph had embraced Freemasonry. But long
before his own initiation as a Mason in Nauvoo, he had travelled in company with Masons - a society
which included, among other prominent disciples, Brigham

During the period after 1841, Joseph also introduced the
practice of plural "celestial marriage"--what later evolved into
Mormon polygamy in Utah--to a small group of his most
trusted followers. In this era not only men, but a few women--
like Lucinda--secretly took a "plural" spouse. The sacred
wedding ritualized by Smith was a transformative union that
anointed men and women to become "priests and priestesses",
"kings and queens", and then ultimately Goddess and God--the
dual creative substance of Divinity in eternal, tantric . The
ceremony was intended to be performed in the holiest
precincts of his new Temple. By late 1843 Joseph revealed
several ritual extensions to the "endowment", all ultimately
incorporated into Mormon Temple ceremony. This legacy of
mysterious initiatory rituals revealed by Joseph Smith between
1842 and 1844 remains little altered as the sacred core of Mormonism.

 Appendix 6 - Printing of the court record in its entirety from its earliest known source,
 Fraser's Magazine, February, 1873, vol. VII, pp. 229-230."Record of the trial of Joseph
Smith for disorderly conduct, Bainbridge, New York, March 20, 1826." State of New York
                                     v. Joseph Smith.
Warrant issued upon written complaint upon oath of Peter G. Bridgeman, who informed that one Joseph Smith of
Bainbridge was a disorderly person and an impostor. Prisoner brought before Court March 20, 1826. Prisoner examined:
says that he came from the town of Palmyra, and had been at the house of Josiah Stowel in Bainbridge most of time since;
had small part of time been employed in looking for mines, but the major part had been employed by said Stowel on his
farm, and going to school. That he had a certain stone which he had occasionally looked at to determine where hidden
treasures in the bowels of the earth were; that he professed to tell in this manner where gold mines were a distance under
ground, and had looked for Mr. Stowel several times and had informed him where he could find these treasures, and Mr.
Stowel had been engaged in digging for them. That at Palmyra he pretended to tell by looking at this stone where coined
money was buried in Pennsylvania, and while at Palmyra had frequently ascertained in that way where lost property was
of various kinds; that he had occasionally been in the habit of looking through this stone to find lost property for three
years, but of late had pretty much given it up on account of its injuring his health, especially his eyes, making them sore;
that he did not solicit business of this kind, and had always rather declined having anything to do with this business.

Josiah Stowel sworn: says that prisoner had been at his house something like five months; had been employed by him to
work on farm part of time; that he pretended to have skill of telling where hidden treasures in the earth were by means of
looking through a certain stone; that prisoner had looked for him sometimes; once to tell him about money buried in Bend
Mountain in Pennsylvania, once for gold on Monument Hill, and once for a salt spring; and that he positively knew that
the prisoner could tell, and did possess the art of seeing those valuable treasures through the medium of said stone; that he
found the [word illegible] at Bend and Monument Hill as prisoner represented it; that prisoner had looked through said
stone for Deacon Attleton for a mine, did not exactly find it, but got a p---[word unfinished] of ore which resembled gold,
he thinks; that prisoner had told by means of this stone where a Mr. Bacon had buried money; that he and prisoner had
been in search of it; that prisoner had said it was in a certain root of a stump five feet from surface of the earth, and with it
would be found a tail feather; that said Stowel and prisoner thereupon commenced digging, found a tail feather, but money
was gone; that he supposed the money moved down. That prisoner did offer his services; that he never deceived him; that
prisoner looked through stone and described Josiah Stowel's house and outhouses, while at Palmyra at Simpson Stowel's,
correctly; that he had told about a painted tree, with a man's head painted upon it, by means of said stone. That he had
been in company with prisoner digging for gold, and had the most implicit faith in prisoner's skill.

Arad Stowel sworn: says that he went to see whether prisoner could convince him that he possessed the skill he professed
to have, upon which prisoner laid a book upon a white cloth, and proposed looking through another Stone which was
white and transparent, hold the stone to the candle, turn his head to book, and read. The deception appeared so palpable
that witness went off disgusted. McMaster sworn: says he went with Arad Stowel, and likewise came away disgusted.
Prisoner pretended to him that he could discover objects at a distance by holding this white stone to the sun or candle; that
prisoner rather declined looking into a hat at his dark coloured stone, as he said that it hurt his eyes.
Jonathan Thompson says that prisoner was requested to look for chest of money; did look, and pretended to know there it
was; and that prisoner, Thompson, and Yeoman‘s went in search of it; that Smith arrived at spot first; was at night; that
Smith looked in hat while there, and when very dark, told how the chest was situated. After digging several feet, struck
upon something sounding like a board or plank. Prisoner would not look again, pretending that he was alarmed on account
of the circumstances relating to the trunk being buried, [which] came all fresh to his mind. That the last time he looked he
discovered distinctly the two Indians who buried the trunk, that a quarrel ensued between them, and that one of said
Indians was killed by the other, and thrown into the hole beside the trunk, to guard it, as he supposed. Thompson says that
he believes in the prisoner's professed skill; that the board which he struck his spade upon was probably the chest, but on
account of an enchantment the trunk kept settling away from under them when digging, that notwithstanding they
continued constantly removing the dirt, yet the trunk kept about the same distance from them. Says prisoner said that it
appeared to him that salt might be found at Bainbridge, and that he is certain that prisoner can divine things by means of
said stone. That as evidence of the fact prisoner looked into his hat to tell him about some money witness lost sixteen years
ago, and that he described the man that witness supposed had taken it, and the disposition of the money:
And therefore the Court find the Defendant guilty. Costs: Warrant, 19c. Complaint upon oath, 25 1/2c. Seven witnesses,
87 1/2c. Recognisances [sic], 25c. Mittimus, 19c. Recognisances [sic] of witnesses, 75c. Subpoena, 18c. - $2.68.

                            Appendix 7 - Racial Statements in LDS Scriptures
Book of Mormon
1 Nephi 12:23 (Prophecy of Lamanites after Christ) ". . . became a dark, and loathsome, and a filthy people, full of
idleness and all manner of abominations."

1 Nephi 13:15 (Gentiles) ". . . they were white, and exceedingly fair and beautiful, like unto my people [Nephites] before
they were slain."

2 Nephi 5:21 ". . . a sore cursing . . . as they were white, and exceedingly fair and delightsome, that they might not be
enticing unto my people the Lord God did cause a skin of blackness to come upon them."

2 Nephi 30:6 (Prophecy to Lamanites) ". . . scales of darkness shall begin to fall . . . they shall be a white and delightsome
people." (Changed to pure and delightsome in 1981)

Jacob 3:5 (Lamanites cursed) ". . .whom ye hate because of their filthiness and the cursing which hath come upon their
skins. . ."

Jacob 3:8-9 ". . .their skins will be whiter than yours . . . revile no more against them because of the darkness of their skins
. . ."

Alma 3:6 ". . . skins of the Lamanites were dark, according to the mark which was set upon their fathers, which was a
curse upon them because of their transgression and their rebellion. . ."

Alma 3:8 (Cursed) ". . .that their seed might be distinguished from the seed of their brethren . . .that they might not mix . .

Alma 3:9 ". . . whosoever did mingle his seed with that of the Lamanites did bring the same curse upon his seed."

Alma 3:14 (Lamanites cursed) ". . . set a mark on them that they and their seed may be separated from thee and thy seed. .

Alma 3:19 (Amlicites cursed) ". . . brought upon themselves the curse ..."

Alma 23:18 ". . . [Lamanites] did open a correspondence with them [Nephites] and the curse of God did no more follow

3 Nephi 2:14-16 ". . . Lamanites who had united with the Nephites were numbered among the Nephites; And their curse
was taken from them, and their skin became white like unto the Nephites . . . became exceedingly fair . . ."

3 Nephi 19:25, 30 (Disciples) ". . . they were as white as the countenance and also the garments of Jesus; and behold the
whiteness thereof did exceed all the whiteness . . . nothing upon earth so white as the whiteness thereof . . . they were
white, even as Jesus."

Mormon 5:15 (Prophecy about Lamanites) ". . .shall become a dark, a filthy, and a loathsome people, beyond the
description of that which ever hath been amongst us . . ."

Mormon 5:17 "They were once a delightsome people . . ."
Pearl of Great Price
Moses 7:8 ". . . a blackness came upon all the children of Canaan . . ."

Moses 7:12 ". . . Enoch continued to call upon all the people, save it were [except] the people of Canaan, to repent . . ."

Moses 7:22 ". . . for the seed of Cain were black and had not place among them."

Abraham 1:21 ". . . king of Egypt [Pharaoh] was a descendant from the loins of Ham, and was a partaker of the blood of
the Canaanites by birth."

Abraham 1:27 ". . . Pharaoh being of that lineage by which he could not have the right of Priesthood . . ."

                                     Appendix 8 – Temple practices
Mormons claim that their temples are merely a continuation of the ancient Jewish temple, overlooking the
obvious fact that the Jewish temple was used for animal sacrifices, presided over by an exclusive, inherited
priesthood, and had nothing secret about its rituals. However, Mormons claim to see their temple rituals
justified by the following biblical passages:

          Baptism for the dead: 1 Cor 15:29 "Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if
           the dead rise not at all? Why are they then baptized for the dead?"

          New Name: Rev 2:17 "To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will
           give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he
           that receiveth it."

          Sealing: Matthew 16:19 (also 18:18): "And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of
           heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven..."

          Second Anointing: 2 Peter 1:10-11: "Wherefore . . . brethren, give diligence to make your
           calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be
           ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus."
The Temple Recommend
Members require a personal "temple recommend" from their bishop before attending. A temporary temple
recommend can be obtained after a few months' membership. This allows the person to do baptisms for the
dead. A permanent temple recommend requires that an individual be a member for one year, and be found
"worthy." In order to be found worthy, one must have paid a tithe in support of the church, followed the
"Word of Wisdom," followed the commandments and remained "morally clean."
The recommend is obtained from and signed by the member's bishop after passing a one-on-one worthiness
interview, in which one's commitment to the gospel is reviewed. The recommend is also signed by the
member's stake president after a second one-on-one worthiness interview, and finally by the member
themselves. By signing his or her own recommend, the member acknowledges their responsibility to ensure
that they remain worthy to hold the recommend. Once issued a recommend remains valid for a period of
two years.
Specifically, to qualify for a temple recommend, one must correctly answer a series of questions examining
what the church believes are the most important factors indicating one's spiritual worthiness. These
questions seek to ensure that the interviewee has a basic belief in key church doctrines, and obeys the most
significant church rules, such as the following:
      a belief in God the Father, Jesus, the Holy Spirit;
      belief in the role of Jesus as the Savior;
      belief in the Restoration;
      support for the President of the Church and other general authorities and local church leaders;
      obedience to the "Law of Chastity" (strict celibacy outside of a marriage that is legally recognized
       by the local government, and that is both monogamous and heterosexual);
      refraining from the abuse of family members;
      no affiliation or agreement with polygamists or other people whom the church considers apostates;
      making a good faith effort to attend church meetings and obey other church rules;
      honesty;
      payment of tithing;
      following the church's interpretation of the Word of Wisdom (for which see below);
      payment of child support (if applicable);
      keeping the solemn oaths one has previously made in the temple;
      wearing the temple garment "night and day"; and
      confession of all serious sins to the clergy.

Mormons believe that the family relationships - between husband and wife and between parent and child -
can be made eternal by the authority of the Mormon priesthood. The ceremonies in which this is done are
called ―sealings‖.

Young Mormons are taught that their goal in choosing a life's mate should be to select another Mormon
who is worthy to be endowed and married in a sealing ceremony in the temple. To marry anyone else, they
are taught, would be to sacrifice one's hopes of exaltation in the Celestial Kingdom of heaven, since only
those people whose marriages are sealed "for time and all eternity" will be in that highest glory.

Thus, good Mormon couples first get their endowment, and then have their wedding in the temple, in one
of the sealing rooms. Since only worthy Mormons can enter the temple, frequently many friends and family
members - even parents of the bride and groom - are excluded from witnessing the ceremony, and must
wait outside the temple, or in a waiting room at the entrance foyer which is not part of the sacred precincts.

Weddings are scheduled so that a number of them can be performed at the same time, so that sometimes a
bride must share her special day with several other brides. If she has not received her own endowment
before her wedding day, she and her bridegroom (and their entire wedding party, if worthy) may go through
an endowment session before their sealing ceremony. The bride is allowed to wear her special wedding
gown during the endowment session, with the apron and other ritual clothing worn over it. Or she may get
her own endowment a few days before her wedding day. If the bride and groom have both been previously
endowed, then they and their wedding party can proceed directly from the dressing rooms to the sealing
room, dressed in the temple clothing.

The actual sealing (wedding) ceremony is very brief. When the wedding party has assembled in the sealing
room, the officiator, dressed like all temple officiators in a white suit, instructs the couple to kneel at the
altar, facing each other across the altar, and to join hands in the Patriarchal Grip. Simple vows are
exchanged, and the officiator pronounces them husband and wife "for time and all eternity." The exchange
of rings is optional, and is not part of the ceremony. During the ceremony there is no music, no flowers, no
reading of poetry, no "giving the bride away," no photographs.

A Mormon couple which has already been married in a civil ceremony may, after a certain waiting period
(designed to discourage such civil ceremonies), go to the temple and have their marriage sealed. Any
children born already to them can be brought to the temple and sealed to them as their children. Such
children are not required to go through a worthiness interview, but are simply brought to the parents
directly in the sealing room, dressed in white, when the sealing is scheduled. Children born to a couple
already sealed do not have to go through the ceremony; they are considered to be already sealed to their
parents automatically, since they are "born under the Covenant" (referring to the "New and Everlasting
Covenant of Marriage" as described in the revelation on plural wives and celestial marriage in the Doctrine
and Covenants, Section 132.

Sealings for the dead are essentially the same ceremony. They are much more perfunctory, of course.
Generally a group of Mormons will gather to "do sealings" in one of the sealing rooms. The officiators
have long lists of families of the dead, listing the names of the parents and all children. They will ask the
appropriate number of males and females to kneel at the altar, and quickly recite the words which seal the
family together, calling out the name of each deceased family member, then mark the family sheet as
completed, and call another group to kneel at the altar for another family. Dozens of families of the dead
can be sealed in just a few hours.

Appendix 9      Smithsonian Institution statement
             on the Book of Mormon


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