Mormon culture

Angel Moroni – Angel Nephi

I took occasion yesterday to read the paper “The Religion of the Fathers” in a slow and methodical fashion. It is sixty-nine pages, and I did not want to rush through it. I sat through four hours of listening as it was delivered a few weeks ago, now I wanted to read it to remember, confirm and verify the impressions I had when I first heard it but also to absorb the message more fully. Therefore, I sat still as I read, listening for the impressions of the spirit, seeking to know the Lord’s mind.

It took me six hours to read, ponder and look up many of the footnotes. It has the best defense of the Book of Abraham I have ever read. I had heard some of the history of the Egyptian dynasties explained before, but besides my own personal witness from the Lord that it is a valid record and is scripture, perhaps these three statements from the middle of the paper best conclude the matter for me that the opponents of the Book of Abraham have long been barking up the wrong tree.

Attending a Wilderness Religious Retreat

After several kind yet firm invitations from a good friend, I decided to accept an invitation to join him and five or six hundred other like-minded individuals to leave the comfort of my Southern California home for a weekend in the wilderness somewhere south of Mesquite, NV. This place is out in the wilderness, away from the city lights, a place that reminds me of where someone would go of they wanted to get away from all the comforts of civilization.

Returning to Church in California

There is something wonderful about ceremony and ritual that gives strength to the ordinance of the sacrament. Although we have been able to partake of the sacrament in the home of our Elder’s Quorum President each week, there just seems to be added strength in worshiping together in a larger body.

My Interview with Dr. Jana Riess

I don’t think the current leaders of the LDS Church are intentionally trying to deceive the saints. They’ve inherited this huge unwieldy beast and are doing the best with what they have. Brigham created a monster because of his insistence that polygamy was commanded of God. Church leaders today don’t even want to talk about polygamy, the elephant in the room.

Changing Religious Beliefs

I used to be very careful to ensure I was on the right side of every question, in the right place at the right time and that when I taught, I made sure what I taught was very much in line with what I knew the Brethren taught. I studied their words just as much as I studied the scriptures, perhaps even more so.

My Life as a Mormon

The problem with subjective spiritual experiences is that they can’t be verified. Or can they? I’ll share an experience that is more in line with the standard orthodox LDS narrative about what we can expect to receive from God if we seek Him with faith and real intent.

Fellowship is a Wonderful Thing

I do not believe the LDS Temples are as pleasing to the Lord as they claim them to be. I do not think he is pleased with the expense of these edifices, as beautiful as they are. I am confident He would be much more pleased if the money were used to help the poor. Yes, there is a need for a temple in Zion, but the LDS Temples simply do not qualify.

Beautiful Southern Utah

It is Zion returning. He comes with the City of Enoch, which was taken up. But before He comes, Zion must be established here and prepared to meet Him when He comes. The Lord is working to prepare a people who will be that Zion. They are few in number, cast out because of their beliefs that are not in line with the traditions of the church fathers.

Insights from a Prophet’s Life

Last week, for the first time that I can recall in the five years since I had resigned my membership in the LDS Church, a good brother of the ward stopped me on my way to the car after church and said, “I just wanted to tell you how much I admire you. Each Sunday you come to church, sit next to your wife and listen carefully to the speakers. I know you’re here supporting your wife even though you’re not a believer. You stand tall in my book.” I wanted to correct him that I AM a believer, but the time wasn’t right.

Suicide Among LDS Youth in Utah

Through artificial means, mankind has devised ways around that core structure to bring children into the world. Two men or two women can now become parents without going through the same method set forth by God. However, this defeats the purpose of the divine plan, which is to unite a man and a woman in the procreative process. That unity is much more than physical, it binds the couple together at a much deeper spiritual level.

Excommunicated Mormons

I took a few weeks recently to closely examine what I believe. I made a short, concise list of about forty relevant doctrines, principles and practices. I wanted to offer the list to kind and well-meaning folks who have asked how they could help me come back into the LDS faith. For the most part, there is a a lot of commonality in what we believe.

Mike Stroud Has Been Excommunicated

Just by sheer coincidence, I happen to have written a number of posts that have the word “Excommunicated” in the title. It has always amazed me to see the number of hits I get each day on those particular posts. Today, at least five of those posts are in the top ten. It makes me wonder what people really want to know about LDS excommunications.

A Testimony Revisited

Carol and I had one of those conversations Sunday after church. I was talking with a friend about preparations for the upcoming April conference in Colorado. After our phone conversation concluded, Carol said, “We need to talk.” Uh-oh. “Okay,” I said. “What about?” “About the elephant in the room.” “Ah, yes.” I knew what she was …

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Q & A with Tim Malone, Author of Latter-day Commentary

Q: How has your perception of Latter-day Commentary changed since its inception? In many respects, the direction of this simple blog has turned completely around. When I started blogging almost eight years ago, my intent was to help combat what I perceived to be a plethora of misinformation out there about the doctrines I knew …

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Reunion Responses

Hello Friends, The previous post on this blog asked a series of questions about the upcoming Remnant Family Reunion Retreat in May in Colorado. The questions have troubled me, but I’ve avoided answering the questions for a couple of reasons—mostly because I’m not the event organizer. But these questions need answers, and so I’ve sought …

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The Power of Wise Communication

The opportunity to communicate has increased a thousand fold in recent years. The power of the internet has made it possible to reach one individual at a time or thousands at one time. We live in a magnificent age. Whether we communicate face to face or online, apparently the ability to communicate effectively has diminished. …

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Representing Christ on the Earth

Many years ago, Elder Scott visited a Stake in Layton Utah to discuss an ongoing problem in the LDS Church, that of priesthood leaders putting themselves between Christ and His children. It has been twenty-two years since that issue was discussed, yet it remains rampant today. You would think over the years such an important …

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Serving Where the Lord Calls You

I normally don’t share private email dialogs. They should remain private unless the Lord tells me otherwise. This is one of those cases where the Lord has asked me to share this publicly. The individual involved should not be reading my blog anyway. I had a missionary write me to ask if he should stay …

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Sharing Spiritual Experiences

One of the binding ties all human beings can have in common, if they want it, is the sharing of spiritual experiences. Because we are children of God, we have His promise and an opportunity to approach Him in prayer, obtain revelation for ourselves, and, when appropriate, share it with others. This has always been …

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Preserving the Restoration

Mormon history is full of breakoff groups, splinter groups, divisions, and all kinds of off-shoots. Most of them have been failures. Tell me why you think this new movement will be different. First, let’s be clear I’m no spokesperson for this movement. I’m not even sure you can classify it as a movement. There is …

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We Thank Thee O God For a Prophet

I attended our ward Sacrament meeting today. Because of General Conference next week, we held our monthly Fast and Testimony meeting. A majority of the testimonies were from the sisters sharing their thoughts about the Women’s meeting last night. The number of testimonies of a loving God and Savior were about equal to those of …

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Answers – Because I Keep Getting Asked

“Why did you do this?” “I felt it was the right thing to do.” “Did you think about the consequences?” “Of course, I’ve thought about them for two and a half years.” “Do you realize what you’ve given up?” “Actually, I’ve been more focused on what I have gained.” “What do you mean?” “I’ve never …

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A Day of Rejoicing – A New Beginning

I barely remember being baptized when I was eight years old. My family had joined the LDS church a few years earlier. Being only five at the time, I had the advantage of a few years of instruction in Primary and Sunday school. I also had the blessing of having read the Book of Mormon …

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A Few Notes from the Mesa Lecture

I tried to do a little live-blogging to my Facebook Group as the lecture rolled forth. I couldn’t keep up. There were too many declarations coming too fast. I should not have been surprised. Carol has been telling me for months, maybe for the past year that the day would come when Denver would make …

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Preparing for the Final Lecture – Part Three

This is part three of my notes in preparing for the final lecture in the Denver Snuffer series – “Forty years in Mormonism.” While I am trying to encourage you to read Denver’s material, particularly the previous lectures in this series, I am not trying to advocate anything other than gaining knowledge by study and by …

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Preparing For the Final Lecture – Part Two

This is part two of my notes in preparing for the final lecture in the Denver Snuffer series – “Forty years in Mormonism.” The purpose of these posts is simply to review some of the material presented in the previous lectures. In a sense, it contains my study notes. I learn best by sharing and …

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Facebook Discussion Group for Latter-day Commentary

At the request of my bishop, I have created a new space for those who wish to discuss posts from this blog on a closed Facebook group rather than in the comments below. You can find it at this link: https://www.facebook.com/groups/latterdaycommentary/ I hesitated a long time before creating this group. I feel strongly such a move should not have been necessary. If …

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The Doctrine of Additional Prophets

To My Long-Time Friends and Associates We have a lot in common. We have spent years worshiping together and providing service in the church. We have served in Bishoprics, on High Councils, in High Priest groups, as teachers in the Primary and in a multitude of other callings over the years. We have taught seminary …

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Questions on LDS Blogging and Apostasy

In response to the recent excommunication of Kate Kelly, founder of Ordain Women, and the pending disciplinary actions against John Dehlin, and Rock Waterman, The Office of the First Presidency issued a statement on apostasy today. As an active LDS Blogger, I am especially interested in this clarifying message positioned as “Addressing Doctrine and Questions.” …

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Don’t Blame Me, I Just Report the News

Earlier this month, a Facebook event was created entitled, “This is not the place.” It is subtitled, “Mass resignation from the LDS Church,” and is to protest Kate’s excommunication. The event is scheduled to be held at City Creek Park on 24 July 2014 in Salt Lake City, which is Pioneer Day, a holiday in …

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Confessions of a Mormon Blogger

I thought about entitling this “Lessons Learned from Church Discipline,” but I don’t want that to be the main focus of this post. First, to be clear: In spite of rumors to the contrary, I am not under any restrictions or church discipline. I turned in my temple recommend because I felt I no longer …

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Conservative Mormon Bloggers Under Scrutiny

One of my greatest desires as a blogger is to help people of differing beliefs and political ideologies come together in a unified search for peace that comes through faith in Jesus Christ. Thus I was delighted today to be able to express and expound upon those sentiments to Kristen Moulton of the Salt Lake …

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Understanding the Historical Record of Priesthood

One of the things that always bothered me is the lack of a historical record for the ordination of Joseph and Oliver to the Melchizedek Priesthood. At one time, probably in my seminary days, someone mentioned John Whitmer had the record. He was the first “official” church historian. When he left the church in 1838, …

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Defining Bounds the Lord Has Set

Of all the comments in my recent posts on Priesthood, this one got me thinking, pondering and praying. I have split Darin’s comment into a few paragraphs. I was especially interested in the third paragraph because I have heard it before from someone I love dearly. I don’t find Darin’s comments offensive. In fact, I’d …

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When Good People Oppose Your Best Work

A while back I wrote an article entitled, “When Religion Comes Between Spouses.” It was my best effort at that time to share my ideas, successes and failures in dealing with a personal problem I was experiencing – and continue to experience in my marriage: a spouse who does not feel comfortable with, understand or …

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Concluding Testimony at my Disciplinary Council

I shared my testimony in our regular monthly testimony meeting this morning. I wanted to make sure the Bishop and a member of the Stake Presidency present – he’s also in our ward – heard me say I sustain the general authorities and local authorities of the church. Of course these words were in addition …

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Cut Off From Among My people

When one is excommunicated from the LDS Church, he is provided instructions by the Bishop or Stake President as to what he can and cannot do. Given that the church just severed the relationship with the individual excommunicated you would think the instructions provided are no longer applicable. It is assumed they are given with …

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Respect for an Aging Prophet

I watched the recording of Saturday’s historic Women’s Conference the other day. The music was beautiful, the messages were wonderful. Someone at church commented on Sunday that President Monson “did not look well.” OK, let’s see. He’s 86 years old, has long been suffering from the effects of diabetes and lost his wife almost a …

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Investigating Alternative Viewpoints

My bishop asked to visit with me again on Sunday afternoon. We spent an hour discussing my health – both mental and physical – my career, my financial condition and my blogging activities. Although he doesn’t read my blog, others in the ward do and have shared misgivings about me. I thanked him for the …

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LDS Members Persecuted For Reading Books

In light of the excommunication of several LDS Church members recently for apostasy, and one in particular for simply reading a book, I’d like to discuss a couple of the temple recommend questions, which the church makes available on their website. The two questions deal with sustaining our leaders and agreeing with individuals who teach …

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Church Administration versus Ministering

When I was much younger, I was fascinated with the administration of the church. My sister works for the church. She is secretary to an Apostle. That means nothing, really. I only mention it to bring some context to what I am about to write. I love my sister and am proud of her accomplishments. I know …

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You Want Me To Sacrifice What?

When I was reading The Second Comforter for the first time I came to chapter nine where Denver wrote about sacrifice. I read Joseph’s quote from the Lectures on Faith: “Let us here observe, that a religion that does not require the sacrifice of all things never has power sufficient to produce the faith necessary …

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Snuffer Reader Excommunicated for Apostasy

I am troubled this evening as I write this short post. An online friend has been excommunicated from the LDS Church for apostasy because he wrote in an online forum, much as I have on my blog, that Denver Snuffer is a prophet of God. As the scripture says, “the testimony of Jesus is the …

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