Church Explains Why Gospel Topic Essays aren’t Publicized

20 July

Psalm 101:7; “He that worketh deceit shall not dwell within my house: He that telleth lies shall not tarry in my sight.”

steven-e-snow-largeToday we’re looking at a post on the Mormon Stories podcast website hosted by John Dehlin. As many of you probably know, Mr. Dehlin was ex-communicated in early 2015 for speaking out against the Church. His podcasts are designed to discuss the more controversial topics in Mormonism, and the Church felt that he had crossed their line of what is, and isn’t acceptable.

You can listen to the podcast via the links on their site, for now we’re looking at the quote they posted from an interview of LDS Church Historian Steven Snow.

Let’s take a look at what he said!

Mormon Stories, July 16, 2016

‘Elder Steven E. Snow candidly explains why the LDS Gospel Topics Essays are not publicized by the LDS Church. (Source here.  Date of recording unknown).

“Woven into the story, the history will be some of the issues that sometimes rise associated with church history and our doctrine. We try to cover those with some essays which are linked to lds.org under Gospel Topics. The Brethren two years ago gave us twelve questions to answer. They included “Race and the Priesthood”, “Polygamy”, “The translation of the Book of Mormon”, on and on. Nine of those have now been answered and three questions remain to be answered and we are still working on those. We should conclude our work by the end of this year. If you haven’t had a chance to look at those essays, we’d encourage you to do so and share them with your friends.’

Question:

The Church is a multi-billion dollar organization, so why aren’t they using the resources from tithing members GIVE to them and tell the truth? Why is getting the info out incumbent upon the members? At what point did people like my mother become the advertising agency for LDS.inc?

‘We are in the process of letting leaders, stake presidents and bishops know about them so they can be a resource in the event that some of their members are having questions or challenges about those issues. “Book of Abraham” essay was just released in July, that’s the most recent of the nine essays that have been published on-line.’

They should keep the words of our Lord in mind who said all things will be revealed –

Luke 8:17; “For nothing is secret, that shall not be made manifest; neither anything hid, that shall not be known and come abroad.”

‘I think it’d be helpful to know how we chose to roll those out. It was a soft roll out. There wasn’t an announcement saying “You can go to this website to learn everything weird about the Mormon church you ever wanted to learn”. (Laughter from the audience)

But yet we had a lot of people struggling with some of these issues. We were loosing young people particularly. And we felt we owed a safe place for people to go to get these answered. So they were deliberately kind of placed in an existing database, so they wouldn’t ….’

A soft roll out? Why does this make my heart hurt? Shouldn’t news about what Jesus is doing cause people to rejoice? Why is this being done in a clandestine manner?

‘You know, 90% of the church probably couldn’t care less, they don’t worry about such things. But we do have some folks who are on-line and we felt like they needed a safe place to go to get answers if they had questions. So I don’t think you are gonna see a well publicized campaign to tell you to go to these sites. But we just, you know, the people that are interested seem to kind of pass the word amongst themselves. And the only other thing is that leaders now will have access to them. And I think the long- probably the greatest long-term benefit will be: These are answers that have been vetted by the, reviewed by the Quorum of the Twelve and the First Presidency and they have signed off on these answers.’

What’s unsafe about resources that give out truthful info?

Why didn’t leaders/teachers have access to the curriculum before now?

‘And now curriculum and seminaries and institute can safely weave these essays into a future curriculum to in a sense “inoculate” is a word I use quite a bit for the rising generation. So, they can learn a little bit about these things without being totally shocked when they hear them for the first time. Does that make sense? (“yeah” from someone in the audience) Yeah, OK.

So, don’t expect a big campaign. I think there’s been a lot of interest within maybe a small percentage of church members but my view is most of the church really is not troubled, members are not troubled by these.”

Inoculate? What disease are they trying to prevent from spreading? Could it be a disease of unbiblical doctrines?

Sadly, Mr. Snow is probably correct in thinking that most won’t care about the essays, but a part of me just can’t imagine anyone would be okay with knowing they’ve been lied to!

Please, pray for these people! Pray that when they get the info they’ll turn to Jesus and not a hatred towards God.

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