Letter to Ward members re: resignation as their bishop January 2011

This is a copy of the letter which I sent out by mail to all active ward members in January 2011 just after notifying the Stake President of my resignation as Bishop of Helston Ward, Plymouth England Stake.

I felt they needed to know the truth about my resignation from myself, because rumours can & did start to spread so quickly.
I truly loved the members of the Helston Ward. The relationships I had with them felt like strong family ties.

As a consequence of my love & concern for each of them I wrote this letter.

They deserved to know I loved them & despite my change of beliefs was determined to continue to be their friends!

The Europe Area Presidency were not well pleased & demanded my silence.

I obliged under duress (threat of excommunication) in order to protect my extended family and friends’ feelings.

Time has healed hurts to some extent & allows me now tell the truth as I initially wanted.

~~~~~~~~~~~//~~~~~~~~~~~~

Dearest brothers and sisters

Firstly, may I express my deep and abiding love for all of you. I have always enjoyed our association with each other in the Church. And hope that will continue.

For most of you, our relationship started when I was a young child, for others we became acquainted later, but our relationship feels just as sweet and enduring. I have loved serving you all as your bishop these past seven years. It has been the most wonderful time of my life. There have been challenges which we have worked through, but there has been an abundance of beautiful and memorable experiences.

It is with heartfelt regret that I write to you at this time. I want to inform you of a decision I have taken which not only affects me, but everyone in Helston Ward. By doing this I realise my decision will cause an emotional upset for most of you which I can truly empathise with as I have had to endure the emotional turmoil personally for over six weeks as I fought to discover the truth.

I have resigned from my calling as bishop of Helston Ward due to realising that my testimony was based on a false premise.

I realise this will shock you. It has truly shocked me how quickly a testimony of the Church can unravel when Joseph Smith’s divine calling as God’s prophet is undermined by learning the truth about him.

I have come to believe over the last month that there are so many inconsistencies and problems with the historicity of the Book of Mormon, as well as the divinity of Joseph Smith’s calling as prophet, that I can no longer, in good faith, fulfill my calling as Bishop of Helston Ward. 

I have not come to this decision lightly. I am resigning as bishop after much careful study, prayer and thought over a period of almost two months. During that time I have desperately tried to find out that what I had recently discovered about the Church was a malicious and fictitious lie. But the more I studied the more evidence of a cover-up I discovered.

What I found has hurt me deeply and has made me realise that the sweet feelings of the spirit I believed were associated with the truth were actually misplaced.

My testimony of the Church has been found wanting. What hurt most was discovering that I had gained a testimony of things as they were made to appear, rather than the truth.
I was hurt by discovering that prophets in times past were “economical with the truth”, at best, in order to protect the Church and this practice continues to this day.

Let me reassure you I am not resigning as a result of sin, or weakness or being offended by anyone. I loved the gospel and the Church, and loved serving you as your bishop.

It hurts me to even think the Church I have sacrificed so much of my life for could be untrue. When I think of the time, physical & emotional effort, money and all the sacrifices I have made as a diligent member, I just can’t believe I am now thinking it was for a false premise.

But, I have just come to the inevitable conclusion, when faced with indisputable evidence, that I would rather accept the uncomfortable truth than a comforting fantasy.

I dedicated my life to serving my Saviour and his children, but my integrity and honesty forces me to follow the truth, as painful as it is, rather than live a lie.

President J Reuben Clark said “If we have the truth, it cannot be harmed by investigation. If we have not the truth, it ought to be harmed.”

After having gone through the emotional turmoil of coming to terms with the fatal flaws in the Church, I am now beginning to enjoy the benefit of being able to think more clearly and am starting to feel the joy of knowing more truth.

The most important question every member needs to ask is: “If the church is not true would I want to know?” Only then can one be open-minded to truth.

Please don’t think that I, in any way, am doing this with the intention to hurt anyone. It pains me deeply to think that my decision will make anyone suffer.

Please accept my sincerest apologies for any pain caused by this decision.

Know that I love and respect you and hope you can understand my decision and the reasons why I have made it.

All the best on your journey.
Love
Steve Bloor

About these ads
This entry was posted in Religious Epiphany. Bookmark the permalink.

198 Responses to Letter to Ward members re: resignation as their bishop January 2011

  1. Kat Evans says:

    Wow!!!!! Good letter!

  2. B. Lewis says:

    Steve, thank you for sharing your testimony.

  3. Katya Birken says:

    That takes guts and honesty! Much respect for you for sure.

    • stevebloor says:

      Thank you Katya. It really did feel like I was dying inside for awhile.

      Now, just like being reborn I’m enjoying a much brighter life post Mormonism! And it’s authentic!

      All the best,
      Steve

      • nickleus says:

        “Now, just like being reborn I’m enjoying a much brighter life post Mormonism!”

        this is how i felt too, it was like waking up from the worst nightmare ever, only to see the bright sun on a warm day =) thanks for your letter and blog post and i wish you well and welcome into the real world ;)

  4. brewmaster1957 says:

    I feel your pain. But the freedom you are about to experience is going to blow your mind.
    Kerry- Exmormon since 1991.

    • stevebloor says:

      Thanks, I’ve just started to sample it. Loving living life in full colour 3D HiDef, rather than black & white!

      • j says:

        That is _exactly_ how I’d describe my experience after leaving the church! The world came a-l-i-v-e…._I_ came alive! As you said, everything was “full clour 3D HiDef”! I’ve been out twenty years, and I _still_ give praises to the Universe every day that I was one of the lucky ones to have the necessary paradigm shift. It’s been hard, building up and learning who _I_ am, and not who I was told I was….what a journey, but I give thanks for every beautiful, excrutiating moment. Drink it all up!! My heart is with you…

  5. brewmaster1957 says:

    Steve, how did your family react to this epiphany of truth? I am always interested especially when it involves a spouse and/or kids. Anyway, I can tell you that it may seem depressing but things get immensely better. For example, you are about to learn who your TRUE friends are and those who just pretended to be friends. I was left without many friends in the church but found MANY others outside who are willing to help. You may email me privately at any time.

  6. Kris says:

    Welcome to the club of apostates. My family and I left in 2009, but it started way before that!

    • stevebloor says:

      Thanks for the welcome. It’s reassuring with so many people to welcome us into the post-Mormon world.

      Thank you!
      Best wishes
      Steve

      • Kris says:

        There will be lots of deprograming to do! There’s lots of us dealing with it. It takes time. I’m 47 now and was true blue my whole life. My view of the world went from black and white to Color HD and 3D!! I hope you find it that way as well. :)

  7. guy noir says:

    Ye shall know the Truth, and the TRUTH shall make you Free.

    But First, It will piss off Lots of people!

  8. Boe says:

    Thank you Steve for having the courage of your convictions, to do what’s right, by setting an example of integrity for others who are trapped by the tyranny of faith. Few faiths are more tyrannical than the one Joseph Smith cobbled together out of a combination of prevailing folklore to try and resolve the big 19th Century theological questions, “Why didn’t God bother mentioning anything in the Bible about these vast civilizations that existed on the other side of the world?” (lost tribe of Israel) “How do we square slavery with the Atonement?” (Curse of Cain!) How can I get away with having sex with women who are not my wife and not commit adultery? (Polygamy!) Once you do the math and see that it doesn’t add up, it all just seems embarrassingly obvious that Mormonism was invented to manipulate others in every way, sexually, financially, emotionally, intellectually and spiritually and it’s been working to exploit them ever since. Mormonism exploited 5 generations of my family, which is 5 too many. I pruned that rotten branch from our family tree 10 years ago and its been healthy ever since, thankfully. .

  9. Jennifer says:

    Very well put. Happy holidays from another ex-mormon :)

  10. Jake D says:

    As many of us know it’s a difficult transition from true believer having certainty not only about our life but, God, humans, and the plan for our future. To do so in such a public situation can’t be easy. Welcome to the uncertainty and doubt that comes from honesty, truthful inquiry.

    Best Wishes and Happy Holidays,

    Jake

  11. Angel says:

    I admire your courage and honesty! I have only ‘come out’ to my husband and he isn’t handling it well… wish I had the strength of heart to just throw it all out the window right now. Best wishes to you, Steve, and may you have much happiness in your new freedom and authenticity.

  12. Bernie says:

    As a former bishop myself, I congratulate you on your integrity. I have been out over a year now.

    Best wishes.

  13. Rhoda says:

    Brilliantly said! I admire your honestly, integrity, and courage. It is not an easy road but so worth it. The more who have the courage to not only seek the truth, but proclaim their findings will help tip the scales to the point ‘apostates’ can no longer be ignored or maligned. Maybe I’m just dreaming, but deep down I have to believe the tipping point will come when believers are forced to reconcile that people are not leaving because of sin or offense.

    Thanks so much for posting this!

  14. In your position, resigning and showing honesty takes a great deal of courage. Even more courage is needed to accept that you could be wrong, especially about something you hold so dear. I’m glad there are people like this out there setting such a great example for others..

  15. Lisa says:

    You’ve so much support in the post-mormon community. It is truly an amazing one.
    Congratulations, best of wishes, and thank you so much for writing this here. So many will benefit.
    <3

  16. gloria says:

    Congratulations, Steve! You have taken a BIG FIRST step in the right direction. The truth does FREE you, in more ways than one. I left the saints in 2007 and have never once looked back or regretted my decision to leave.

    I wish you the very best,

    Gloria

  17. Brad says:

    As a fellow exmormon, congratulations to you, and welcome to this new wonderful phase of your life. Thank you for being honest and setting such a wonderful example. Cheers.

  18. I’m a bit confused as to the timeline – did you resign last January and are just now posting the letter or are you resigning as of Jan 2012?

    • stevebloor says:

      Hi Kellie,

      I resigned last January, but was sworn to silence by the Church.

      In order to protect my extended family’s feelings I acquiesced to their forceful request or face excommunication!

      I don’t mind personally, but family did.

      Time has passed & hearts have healed a bit, and I object to them demanding my silence!

      So am publicising the letter at last!

      I feel that the truth should be told!

  19. Rodger says:

    Steve,

    Congratulations! That takes guts and integrity and I honor you. I got out in the early 1980′s after a mission and temple marriage of a few years. The entire universe opened up.

  20. angie says:

    Absolutely wonderful!! We resigned our entire family 2 years ago and we pinch ourselves daily due to the overwhelming happiness and peace we feel! Congratulations! PLEASE PLEASE keep talking about your truth!!

  21. Greg says:

    I think you handled it well. Personally, I think the whole idea of testimony is problematic: believing things for which we have no evidence doesn’t make us better or worse as people, and it’s just not right for any religious organization to demand a level of confidence that we choose to describe as knowledge. “I’m doing the best I can” ought to be more than enough for anyone. By excluding people with doubts from positions of leadership, I fear that we are only excluding those who are honest, and failing to value such qualities as compassion and insight as highly as we should. It’s just not right.

    • stevebloor says:

      I agree Greg. I really wanted time to study things out for myself, but as Bishop I was expected to ‘Know’!

      I felt such a hypocrite!

      My honesty & integrity compelled me to resign.

      Loving the freedom I now feel!

  22. I too want to express my support, care, and concern for you. I’ve been there, done that, and it’s not an easy road. It is, however, a road of peace and freedom like we never could have imagined before. May God bless your journey!

  23. Anon Badong says:

    Great letter. Thank you for sharing. I left the church about a year and a half ago after I found out some things that didn’t match up in the church history and the use of tithing. My life has improved dramatically since then, which was something that surprised me because I had believed my whole life that you can’t be happy outside the church. Congratulations and welcome to the postmo community.

  24. Jerry says:

    Congratulations Steve, what was it that lead you to this decision and where do you go from here?

  25. trishberns says:

    From across the pond.
    I am sure that people from exmormon.org. would love to hear your story, see your letters. You will find much love and support from these people who are “recovering from mormonism”.
    I, myself found your story fascinating and validating. My husband and I resigned last month.
    Mia

    • gloria says:

      Congratulations, Mia! There is a whole heck of a lot of us who are are ex-Mormons and expierencing joy and peace. It’s so good to be FREE!

      May you enjoy the journey from here on out,

      gloria

  26. Kate says:

    Welcome to a world of authenticity, Steve! I’ve been out 3 1/2 years and continue to be amazed at the way my life continues to unfold. An open mind is most valuable and will take you places you never imagined as a Mormon.

    • stevebloor says:

      Thanks Kate,

      It’s been almost a year since I resigned as a bishop, but was sworn to silence.

      I recently decided that was wrong!

      So I’m opening my mouth!

      Thanks for your kind support.
      Love your blog.

      Best regards,
      Steve

      • I am only about halfway through the comments, but I must reply to this. The Church demanding that you remain silent about your new understanding speaks volumes to me. This is the kind of behavior that a cult (in the pejorative sense) uses: “You can’t speak about this, because others might start to question too!” Good on you for speaking out.

  27. Stephanie says:

    What a wonderful, brave letter. From a former mormon who struggles daily with not only how I feel about the church but also struggled so much to “come out” to my own family, I admire and applaud your courage. While it was devastating to discover the truth, it is also bittersweet and free. Congratulations to you on beginning your road to living an authentic life and thank you to your example to those of us who struggle and know that we are not alone!! Thank you.

  28. mikeutah says:

    You’re always welcome to visit and participate on http://www.LifeAfterMormonism.net. Great post! My integrity also lead to my resignation.

    Micah

  29. As an ex-Bishop I completely relate. In my case I don’t feel so bad for the time and money I poured into it because life, the church and its members have been so good to me and my family.

    But I do feel bad for the young men and women whom I helped influence to sacrifice two years promoting Joseph Smith, sometimes requiring a great sacrifice from their families.

    I love Latter Day Saints and their efforts to be virtuous. Who of us could have imagined as we poured our hearts into the gospel and members, that one day we’d be asked not to because we studied church history, believing it would build our faith?

  30. c says:

    Hello,

    Well, I would like just to say that everyone is free to choose the good or the bad, that is why we are here on earth. I was from another religion before , and met many ex Mormon . i can tell you something I pray and ask God about the truthfulness of this gospel and i felt it, then when i was in my teenager years i did the same and i felt it again. i did so my testimony could keep growing, and it is sad to hear that one of my brothers decide to go other way, but I just invite to read again the book of Mormon and pray again about the gospel and i know you will find the true of the gospel. It is easy to follow other literature, therefore many of those books are just trying to confused people rather than helping them to find the light. I do not congratulate you, rather I will miss you brother.

    • Peter says:

      As an ex member myself, i feel sad that people place so much emphasis on the ‘testimony’.
      look into any testimony meeting and you”l see tiny children of 3 or 4, coached to give a ‘testimony’ that ‘they know the church is true’.
      look at any other religion and you’ll see people having their feelings and emotions manipulated in a similar manner…
      And – after all this conditioning, you” find they all say that their religion is ‘true’.
      If you look at the facts that surround the LDS church – you’ll see lies and propaganda from top to bottom………..as the ex-bishop discovered, some of this information is readily available simply by looking at the church’s own sources
      it’s not god giving you testimony of a sack of lies, it’s emotional manipulation that you feel, pure and simple

    • Cindy Singleton says:

      C, why is it that when a member finally sees the light and realizes that the teachings of the church are false, church members are so quick to say you need to read the Book of Mormon again and pray about it. Mormons do not believe in the same Christ as in the Bible, plain and simple. Having a testimony of Joseph Smith or the current prophet is not going to save you, nor is doing all the works that is expected of you. Getting back to the presence of our Father in Heaven is simple. Mormons have complicated this and have dismissed the fact that accepting Jesus Christ as the Lord and Savior is the only way to do this! In the Bible there is a scripture that says to not get caught up in the works. Just because you prayed and believe that Mormonism is the true gospel doesn’t mean all others who do the same are going to believe too. I personally am so tired of organized religions telling people what they need to believe and how to live their lives. That is why I left the mormon church 11 years ago this month. I too am a 5 generation mormon and I have never felt more alive since leaving this male generated, guilt fearing church. I am so glad more and more members are finally thinking for themselves and leaving this false religion!

      • Scott says:

        Of all the threads posted here, I chose to respond to this one. Why? I don’t know…maybe it is the regurgitated “Mormon’s believe in a different Christ” or maybe it was the “works” thing again. Cindy, if it is true you left the church, then you know full well Mormons do not believe in a different Christ nor believe that works get us into heaven. The only difference in the way Mormons view Christ than any other Christian religion is that they do not endorse or believe the Nicene Creed, which was not written by the Apostle or inspired by the teachings of Christ. Many Christians (followers of Christ) at that time believed in the trinity the way the Mormons believe it today, ie, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost are three distinct individual Gods, not the same God…one in purpose, not one all encompassing God. To put it simply, if you believe Jesus has brown eyes and I believe He has blue eyes, it doesn’t change the fact that we both believe in the same Jesus. So please, stop with the anti-Mormon lies that Mormons believe in a different Jesus. Mormons believe Jesus is the son of God the Father, born in Bethlehem, that he was raised by his step father (Joseph) and his mother Mary, at 31 started his ministry, organized His church (with Apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, evangelists, and so forth) that he suffered the atonement in the Garden taking our sins upon Himself and suffering death on the Cross to be resurrected three days later, thus conquering death and breaking the bonds of death for all of us. His atonement is what makes Him our Savior…he saved us from both spiritual and temporal death. That is what makes Him the only way back to the Father, as no unclean thing may enter. He makes us clean. He has redeemed us from the otherwise doomed or unredeemable state. If you believe in a different Jesus than this “Mormon” Jesus, it is you who does not believe in the Jesus of the Bible. During His ministry he asked us if we loved Him, then keep His commandments. That is “WORKS.” Faith without works is dead. Now, listen carefully: Mormons do not believe they are saved by their works!!! They believe their works are a sign to the Lord of their devotion and love for Him. Mormon’s only believe they are saved by Christ. Mormon’s do not believe they “work” their own way into heaven. Yes, you all know the Mormons are a good people, family focused people, good neighbors, etc. This is a sign of their works…Jesus said “By their fruits ye shall know them.” If works were not important, Jesus would not have asked us to be about helping others, following His commandments…Works are important. If you do not believe that “works” are an important part of your Christian walk, then again, it is you who believes in a different Jesus than the one found in the Bible. Don’t change the Savior’s Gospel to make it easier for you to live. That is not the freedom that comes from the truth. One of the earlier posters left the church and became a brewmaster! And that makes him feel totally free. Wow! My idea of freedom comes from following the Savior, staying on the straight and narrow keeps me free from the traps that lie waiting. I know this is a long post, however, I want to set things straight. Most everyone who finds their way to this blog have either left the church or are wanting to feel good about being so right about Mormonism being wrong that they like to wallow in the demise of some of it’s members. I think it is great that people leaving the Church have a forum to communicate what they are going through. I know it is tough. Look at all the congrats this former Bishop is getting. That must make him feel very good about the hard decision he made. It’s like therapy. I say fantastic and thanks for supporting him. I think it is inappropriate to use this forum as a chance to regurgitate anti-mormon propaganda. As a devout “Mormon” I am left wondering why you constantly return to these two false charges against the Mormon church, when there are so many “real” points you could focus on. Why go with something that is blatantly false? who’s the judge? You, Mormons, Satan, Fidel Castro, or Christ? OK, so leave it to him to judge. As you go about studying the church, you can then talk more intelligently about the church. To those who have left the church, I am surprised at the overwhelming repeated comments at how free you now feel. Where in the church did you feel bound, held down, or as a lot of anti-mormon’s like to believe, brainwashed? I know why some would stay in the church after coming to a conclusion that the church is false is because of not wanting to hurt family members or friends, or because the atmosphere at church is a welcoming one. I don’t know how someone could live like that though. My question to Steve Bloor is this: You spent a lifetime in the church, but studied something for 2 months that made you lose your testimony. What was it you studied or found out? That would be something worth sharing. To all, please don’t misunderstand me. I consider all of us to be on equal terms in this course of human existence, that we are free to believe whatever we want, and no matter how different we see things, in the end, truth will prevail and all of us have the same equal chance of being surprised when the TRUTH is made known. Until then, please talk civilly with each other. There’s no time to waste and so much to do that ALL MAY BE EDIFIED IN CHRIST. Merry Christmas

    • Kay Parker says:

      I agree with you 1000%!!! At one point I wanted my records off of the church. For whatever reason—I certainly was not headed in this direction–I decided to put all my literature aside and read one more book. Quietly, by myself, I read the Book of Mormon. I testify of the truthfulness of this book that testifies of Our Savior Jesus Christ. The gospel is true—it is too easy to fall for the philosophies of men. Too many of my friends who have left the church will read everything and anything but the Book of Mormon. I do not know of anyone who leaves the gospel while studying this amazing witness. I agree–I do not congratulate you, but will miss you too.

      • Dave says:

        I was rereading the Book of Mormon when I finally lost the last vestiges of my testimony.
        So there’s one for you.

      • Barry says:

        Alma Chapter 30 is a big reason why I started to realize that I didn’t believe in what the BoM taught. We had the lesson this past summer and I couldn’t handle the fact that Alma 30:44 tells me that I must believe in the “testimony of my brethren and the holy prophets.” I completely disagreed with this, plus the fact that it teaches you can’t have good morals without a belief in God or Christ. Once again, completely wrong. It was then, that the scripture made sense, the whole LDS Church is built on believing One Man’s testimony and experience…. Joseph Smith. So I started my own research and came to the conclusion there was no way he was a prophet and it is all to clear where he got the sources (Plagiarism) and inspiration for the BoM. I could go on, but realize, I did read the BoM one last time, although I’ve read it countless times before that, being a member my whole life and reading it made it EXTREMELY clear through logic and The Spirit that is was not of God and definitely not divinely translated. I could list a few other teachings within it that I don’t agree with but I won’t waste anyone’s time. The BoM is simply a made up story, stolen from several other previous works and ideals taught in the 19th century. Not to mention the hard evidence against it. I’ve left the Church, along with my family a little over 2 months ago. Couldn’t be happier and felt more free!

  31. CV Rick says:

    Well said, sir. As other have stated in this thread, the post-Mormon community is rich and vibrant and I urge you to take advantage of it. I was excommunicated in 1997 in a Court of Love because I wouldn’t admit to doing things that I actually hadn’t done. When the Stake President, councilors and Bishops told me that they’d prayed and been directed to encourage me to repent, I knew that they didn’t have a pipeline to any sort of revelation and that began my own investigation into the truth. It was, at times, devastating to learn things that contradicted a life’s teachings and testimony. I admire you and what you had the courage to do.

  32. mj says:

    Wow, what guts it takes to be so public about it! Although I understand the need to inform when you’re in such a prominent position in your area. Welcome to life.. Enjoy your family!

  33. Wendy says:

    Excellent letter and I am glad you decided to no longer be silent. It was a huge relief for me to stop pretending to be something that I was not. Good luck to you.

  34. Sean says:

    Steve,

    As a fellow ExMormon, I enjoyed reading about your triumph in self and intellectual honesty! I presently live in Utah… not from here, just stuck here, and it was when I was 16-years-old that I first questioned my faith. Not much longer after I turned 19 I had myself removed from membership.

    One of these days I’ll have to articulate my experiences and post them online.

    I’m happy for you!

    -Sean

  35. S. Aderman says:

    Steve,
    I applaud you. I left the church 3 years ago. it is a very difficult thing. What a strong man you are to share this with everyone!

  36. Peter Bowen says:

    Thanks for expressing this so well.

    I experienced much the same about 3 years ago when I was serving on the high council in the Belfast stake. Leaving is really hard, but, hard truth is better than easy fantasy any day.

    Cheers

    Pete Bowen

    • stevebloor says:

      Thanks Peter,

      I like your comment “hard truth is better than easy fantasy”!

      I think it’s because it’s authentic!

      Another saying I like is, “I’d rather be slapped in the face with the truth, than kissed with a lie!”

      Best wishes in your authentic life,
      Steve

  37. Paul says:

    Congrats on your freedom. Freedom is the natural condition of mankind…until shysters come along and saddle us with their doctrines, demands, duties, etc.
    Enjoy your liberty – you are now free to follow your own heart, mind and conscience, living a good life truly putting Family First, etc. It’s a definite “oh shit” moment, when you realize that the notion: “that will never happen to me” assumption about life is wrong…when you find that it DID happen to you…YOU were indeedone of those suckers living inside a silly cult. Great people… but evil money-grubbing hierarchy. No offence or malice to the sincere members (on the contrary, love and respect) BUT…zero respect for the conniving clergy.
    How can anyone not be outraged by religious fraud and shysters?
    If Jesus came back today….we would hear a sermon similar to Matthew 23 about the pharisees and greedy scum who run this scam.
    (ps i was EQ President when my eyes were opened, thanks to this website: http://www.wivesofjosephsmith.org – BUT for a few years i had already learned a few secrets – eg Adam-is-God doctrine was official until 1898 ETC ET ETC…all the secrets of the cult)

  38. Cheryl DeWolf says:

    I recently asked for my name to be removed from the records of the Church. I have had some horrific things happen because of my membership. I am now feeling much better, lighter and freer. For me, it is does not mean a life without Christ. I very much still want him there. There are just some things going on in Mormonism that do not remind me of Christ at all.

    Cheryl DeWolf

  39. josh says:

    God bless you brother i’m glad your free :) my eyes were opened in december of last year and I came to Christ in febuary. http://www.horn.tv and http://www.utlm.org helped alot to open my eyes

  40. Ben says:

    There are plenty of us out there that have gone through what your going through. We support and pray for you! What you are doing is right and good. My door is always open if you have questions.

  41. Jackie LeRoy Overbey says:

    I read your letter of resignation and I see a very courageous man doing something which he would rather not do but his love of God and Honesty forced him to do. You have my sdmiration for your strength during a time of emotional turmoil. I pray that God will continue to bless you and lead you into his path as you proceed in your walk with Christ.

  42. Lynn says:

    Bravo for the courage to do this. It’s a fact that it is false and easily proven if one is willing to go on line and read all available material rather than shield their eyes from what is real to follow what is false. I and many others have done the same thing, and for no other reason but because integrity matters to us.

  43. David says:

    I feel very sad for all of you. It is so predictable that people who leave the church congratulate each other so publicly, parading your pseudo-freedom. But I very much doubt that the pats on the back from all these people will ever be worth it.

    I do not believe you are honest.

    It is somewhat like the drunk driver who crashes into another car, killing innocent people. At the time of the crash, the drunk driver can’t control himself or his ability to drive. The decisions that led to the crash were made before that moment.

    Similarly, you feel a temporary rush and freedom, much like a teenager who runs away from home. But you are ultimately responsible for the decisions that lead to your mindset during your exit from the church.

    We will all be accountable for our agency and our decisions. God will force no man to heaven.

    I discovered the gospel when I was living on the street as a drug-addicted teen. I read the Book of Mormon, and it changed my life completely. The evidence in my own life could not be more clear that the gospel is true.

    I have in the intervening 24 years read at least as much material critical of the church, Joseph Smith, etc. as anybody here. I am now a scientist by training, and can see so easily through the vast majority of the so-called evidence many of you allude to. You are all willingly following a path that is utterly empty and dead-ended.

    In the end, following the carnal mind will only lead to a diminished life.

    • stevebloor says:

      Dear David,

      Thank you for your comments.

      Just over one year ago I too would have thought what you said.

      And then by opening my mind to other possibilities I discovered more truth than I ever expected!

      There are good things in the Church, for definite, but all mixed up with a superstitious belief system which inculcated fears, guilt, biases, prejudices & phobias.

      However, as I said, I would rather live an authentic life than follow a comforting fantasy.

      Or in the words of Carl Sagan:
      “It is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.”

      I wish you well,
      Steve

      • lizz says:

        I find this offensive that you say I would rather live an authentic life than follow a comforting fantasy. I feel you say because someone belives in the morman religion that they are there just because of a fantasy. I do not believe there is one perfect way to live. I feel you must live as your heart directs you. You know in your self what is true for you. Not what is true for someone else. Everyone is at a different place in each ones lifes. They need different things to fulfill thier lives. I do not think you should judge one way or the other. Just love and be there what ever they chose.
        agian you said “There are good things in the Church, for definite, but all mixed up with a superstitious belief system which inculcated fears, guilt, biases, prejudices & phobias.”
        was not the church, bible, book of morman ect ect all translated or written by man? Do we not all have our beliefs and think we are right? Then we want others to think as we do? Do we all make mistakes who knows why we are here and why we do what we do. I think eveyone is right or good as long as they are doing what they believe. If they are doing things and they do not believe they should then it is wrong. In our hearts if we open them up we know what we should do. So yes if leaving the mormon church is what you needed to do that is great I just dont like to hear you say others are wrong because they have not seen it the way you do.

      • stevebloor says:

        Hi Lizz,

        I’m sorry if my perception offends you.

        As a human race we need to look dispassionately at what optimises human existence.

        Desire fulfilment doesn’t necessarily equate to wellbeing.

        Following a belief system which inculcates fear, guilt, phobias, biases & prejudices doesn’t equate to wellbeing.

        Just ask the women under the Taliban!

        This quote from a neuro-scientist Sam Harris may explain better what I mean.

        “Religion could be functioning as a placebo.

        “Morality relates to human wellbeing!

        “Human wellbeing is constrained by truth claims.

        “Certain cultures are wrong in how to maximise human wellbeing. They are wrong in terms of what they value.

        “Eg Life for women under the Taliban. Violent misogyny & religious lunacy is a context in which people, particularly women were not thriving!

        “The moment you link questions of right and wrong to questions of human wellbeing is not a way of maximising human wellbeing, eg forcing half the population to live in cloth bags & beating them or killing them when they try to get out.

        “Is that just an opinion?

        “Or Imagine a culture which insisted on removing the eyeballs of every third child. Is this maximising human wellbeing?

        “What if they had scripture which insisted that they did this?” ~ Sam Harris

        I’m just trying to be more objective & scientific about what constitutes authentic human wellbeing.

        And because I have compassion for others I am evangelical in the hopes it helps some people to think about things differently.

        I realize science doesnt have all the answers, but I’m sure religion doesn’t & instead of searching for answers promulgates a superstitious belief system which enslaves all involved.

        Best regards,
        Steve

      • Edy Meredith says:

        I left in l971 at age 29 after a life of indoctrination that includes growing up in Utah and attending BYU & church schools in Jr. high and High school, marrying in the temple to a returned missionary, etc. My “crime” was that I am a studier, reader, & academic so I soon discovered the anomalies & contradictions within mormonism.

        I have never regretted leaving even it was very difficult to provide for my daughter without any help. We made it, and are happy. The criticisms in some comments reveal the petty nature of the person making them. God bless you as you enjoy your freedom in Christ. See my “testimony” on Youtube: Edy Meredith Testimony

    • Rodger says:

      David,

      I chose to leave the LDS church in early 1980′s. Today I still feel that rush and freedom, Seems it wasn’t so “temporary”.

      Are you being honest?

    • mikeutah says:

      @David, as a scientist, you should well understand that we each carry our own biases based on previously established beliefs. The scientific method itself takes this into account and thus tries to overcome this obstacle objectively through various approaches to remove individual bias. Examining religion is no different. We each will see and accept those “evidences” that affirms our beliefs. For many, it is too painful and the fallacy of sunken costs keeps them from allowing themselves to question and honestly review challenging or contradictory information that paints a different picture of events than what they previously were aware of. Dismissal and rationalization are their tools to remain comfortable in their beliefs. However, belief alone does not truth make. No matter how many people believe something, it doesn’t make it any truer, such as the flat Earth belief from centuries ago. Belief should be based off of unbiased facts rather than spun or whitewashed stories. As the brilliant scientist Thomas Edison once stated, “For faith, as well intentioned as it may be, must be built on facts, not fiction – faith in fiction is a damnable false hope.” One more quote to go along with Edison’s: “Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.”
      – Aldous Huxley

      How objective and unbiased were you when reviewing “critical material” of the church? How critical and objective were you when considering the bias of Church produced material? Who stands to lose if the truth were known? How would that affect how history is written or retold? In any case, the LDS church itself stands to lose the most if members discover the truth, as it means lifetimes of lost tithing revenue and free service to their organization. If the church makes you personally happy, more power to you. But your biased and knee jerk dismissal of us and the decision we came to just exposes your own biased and emotional ties to the church. It may have saved you from a life of drugs in the streets, but that doesn’t necessarily prove anything about it being based on God’s truth. Many religions offer the same recovery from drug and street life. Does that mean they are equally God’s one and only? Just some thoughts for you to ponder.

    • “I very much doubt that the pats on the back from all these people will ever be worth it.
      I do not believe you are honest.
      It is somewhat like the drunk driver who crashes into another car, killing innocent people.”
      yes, leaving the church is exactly like a car crash, killing innocent people. by “innocent people” i mean our innocent (in the negative sense), ignorant, brainwashed, bigoted mormon clone of a self. that person dies and we wake up a new and happy person ;) totally honest =) it must be weird for members in the church to see that your “prophets’ and apostles’” scare-tactic prophesies about people leaving the church actually dont come true and that exmormons are generally much happier, mentally-healthier people (compared to themselves as mormons) =)

    • Henry Lions says:

      Forgive me if this sounds harsh but has it never occurred to you that when the B of M changed your life from that of an addict you simply replaced one emotional crutch with another one? Why not try addressing your underlying problem the one that makes you want to abnegate responsibility for your own life to addiction or to the will of a deity. Believe me as one who has been there (recovering gambler and ex-Mormon) the problems don’t do away if you ask God to suppress them, they just fester until you face up and discover what it is that is lacking in your life and deal with it.

      • Lynn says:

        That sounded very harsh, Henry. He who is without sin cast the first stone. You didn’t address David’s email you chose to personally attack him instead. How typical.

  44. John Franklin says:

    As an active member of the Mormon church I think this is pretty pathetic. Sorry. Best of luck though. Hope you find peace you are looking for. I know the only peace I find is through the truth of the gospel.

    • gloria says:

      John,

      Many of us “echo” what Steve has shared. We have found joy, happiness, peace and contentment OUTside of the LDS church. Why is that so hard for Mormons to believe and accept?

      Best wishes,
      gloria

  45. John Franklin says:

    When you are miserable in a few years please make another blog telling us how you were mislead and repented for your sins. Thanks.

    • gloria says:

      It’s been 4 yrs since I left the LDS church and I am happier than ever. There is JOY and a life post-Mormonism. : )

      • Edy Meredith says:

        It has been 41 yrs since I resigned and left the church, and I have never regretted it.
        The freedom from the bondage to mormonism and other group think was worth the struggles I had after rejection & shunning by my family and mormon friends.

    • Rodger says:

      John,

      I left in the early 80′s. It’s been more than a few years and I still don’t feel mislead by leaving, nor a need to repent for these sins of which you speak.

    • jahedgpeth says:

      I’ve been out for +15 years and have never been happier. My happiness is made possible from the realization that these “sins” are simply made up rules of dusty old men to control a herd of people.
      Just last weekend I drove by a Mormon church on Sunday while helping a friend of mine move and thought, “Never again will I ever have to be a part of the nightmare known as Mormonism and for that I am eternally grateful.”
      John Franklin, I hope you have the intellectual integrity and bravery to search the truth for yourself. The process is painful but with time you come to a place of true happiness rooted in reality.
      I wish you the best.

    • Philip Champion says:

      I escaped 20 years ago and have never been miserable, mislead or obliged to repent for this so called “sin”.
      You don’t actually appear to be at “peace” yourself by the evidence of your judgemental remarks?
      For me, life is fulfilled and happy. Best Wishes, Phil Champion

    • AnotherExBishop says:

      John,
      You said, “When you are miserable in a few years please make another blog telling us how you were mislead and repented for your sins.”.

      I too am an ex-bishop, I have a family who are very active and I have gone through the discovery and disillusionment process for over 8 years. The ONLY reason I stay active is for my true believing wife (who has been programmed and brain washed beyond comprehension). It is miserable for me. I hate putting on my mask every Sunday and pretending to believe…..it puts a dark cloud over my family and yes, one day I will officially leave but until then I could easily write a blog on how miserble life is within the church….8 years my friend…and I have studied volumes of solid historical reviews, biographies and diaries as well as the BOM. Knowing facts and historical information allows the full landscape to come forth…I now read the BOM with different eyes….I can now look at the teaching of JS and question, “is the glass half full”…or is it half empty….you chose…..I try to squeeze the good out of the gospel of Jesus Christ….but the key hinge is whether Joseph Smith was a true prophet…put it all together and it is big house built on a crumbling foundation…and the brethren know this…..”lying for the faith”….hiding things that may be true but not faith promoting…you are right we have been mislead….they….the “brethren” need to repent and come clean. I applaud this fellow ex-bishop for the testicular fortitude that I currently lack. Blog that.

      • stevebloor says:

        I thoughts are with you. Hoping things work out well, & soon.

        I hate the way the Church holds families to ransom.

      • mignonfaget says:

        Another Ex-Bishop,
        Why is discussing Joseph Smith and his polygamy such a taboo? Why do Mormons avoid the topic or question? Why would a Bishop turn his back to a member in desperate need? Why do some Mormons justify their decisions to their liking?

  46. James says:

    Hi Steve – What were the specific issues and “indisputable evidence” on the BOM and Joseph Smith that caused you to question your testimony which lead to your resignation as bishop?

    • stevebloor says:

      Good question.

      For a start:
      Familysearch.org shows evidence for polyandry by Joseph Smith. And no General Authority has addressed this issue ever with any sort of explanation.

      Read “An Insider’s View of Mormon Origins” as a start. Then “Journal of Discourses”. You could try http://mormonthink.com Etc.

      Check my links page on my blog.

      After 46 years faithful membership & service in the Church I never knew the truth about Mormonism’s origins. Most members don’t!

      Best regards,
      Steve

      • Marty says:

        If you are going to read Grant Palmers supposed “Insider” view, you should also read the reviews of his book “An Insider’s View of Mormon Origins” by LDS scholars. Several reviews are found here: http://en.fairmormon.org/Grant_Palmer.

        Palmer desperately wants the disaffected, disgruntled and border-line mormons to believe he is a reliable source of authentic information. The truth is he has an axe to grind, and he spent 20 years as a CES employee writing this book. It wasnt until he retired on a ‘tithing-payed’ pension that he released his book.

      • Marty, it always bugs me when someone refers those who are critical of Mormon doctrine to an apologetics site.

        My parents are nice Mormons(TM); they converted when I was in my mid-20s. They have yet to give up nagging me to join as well. When I point them to other literature that shows my reasons for not doing so, their response is “But you’re only looking at the negative things” — by which they mean the literature that shows women as second-class citizens, the repression, the homophobic leadership (don’t get me started on the Church’s involve in Prop 8 and similar here in the US) and so on.

        When I pointed out the numerous lies the missionaries told them, they didn’t have much to say. I suspect that anyone here who served a mission knows about “meat before milk” and the directives not to respond to the more challenging questions that a proselyte might ask …

        If an organization a) lies to the people it is recruiting, b) hides negative information about itself, and c) demands that its adherents not seek “outside sources of information,” I have to question just what it is trying to hide.

      • Scott says:

        To Sharon below: The Mormon Church does not A) or C). However, you may have a point with B) I wouldn’t call it so much hiding information, as it is very vocal about it however, I have seen things omitted in some Church History that was there before. Hiding? May be. Correcting? May be. I don’t know enough about those few items to speak without ignorance. Changing their history? No.

      • mikeutah says:

        To Scott: Perhaps hiding is a bit strong of a word for you. However, does “sanitize” work? After all, most of the changes involve removing embarrassing history or beliefs that challenge the more intellectually minded from seeing Mormonism as a valid belief system. If “sanitize” doesn’t work, we’ll stick with “faith promoting” as Elder Packer worded it. Here are some excerts from his 1981 talk to CES educators:

        “Church history can be so interesting and so inspiring as to be a powerful tool indeed for building faith. If not properly written or properly taught, it may be a faith destroyer.”

        “There is a temptation for the writer or the teacher of Church history to want to tell everything, whether it is worthy or faith promoting or not. Some things that are true are not very useful.”

        “The writer or teacher who has an exaggerated loyalty to the theory that everything must be told is laying a foundation for his own judgment. The Lord made it clear that some things are to be taught selectively and some things are to be given only to those who are worthy.”

        “That historian or scholar who delights in pointing out the weaknesses and frailties of present or past leaders destroys faith. A destroyer of faith – particularly one within the Church, and more particularly one who is employed specifically to build faith – places himself in great spiritual jeopardy. He is serving the wrong master, and unless he repents, he will not be among the faithful in the eternities. Do not spread disease germs!” (Boyd K. Packer, 1981, BYU Studies, Vol. 21, No. 3, pp. 259-271)

        How you describe these actions is irrelevant. The intent to paint a more faith promoting picture, in other words, convert people to something they otherwise wouldn’t convert to if the full history of Mormonism were known or taught, is the real problem. It’s deceptive, dishonest, and self serving to the Church business model. It’s no wonder that out of 14 million so called “members of record” worldwide, active believing Mormons only total about 4-5 million (http://www.cumorah.com/index.php?target=law_harvest&chapter_id=7) with the information age making it ever more accessible for people to find out the truth about their religion.

      • Scott says:

        Careful works. I have absolutely no problem with President Packer’s statements, and I am neither blind nor brainwashed. Like Steve, I am a trained Physician and look at things from a scientific model. No comments about selections A or C? Hmmm. I was almost certain that is where those who love to attack the church would start in. Anyway, my comment was to say the Church has selectively left out or taken out certain parts from earlier volumes. I don’t agree with that from my viewpoint on accuracy, however, I am not leading the Church. Like President Packer was saying, some facts, without the whole story behind the facts, can be misleading. Whatever they do to lead others to be closer to Christ is fine by me. If that makes people like Steve move away from the church and find a different relationship to the savior, so be it. If it helps members, prospective members, or future members understand the Gospel better, than so be it. God will force no man to Heaven. Neither will this or any other church. We all have free will and free agency. Mike from Utah, my thoughts to you would be to stop hating Mormons so much. Love everyone the best you can. The Gospel of Bambi: If you can’t say somethin’ nice, don’t say anything at all. Here’s the hard truth…everyone should be allowed to believe what they will. It is not up to us to harass them about it. Live your life in a way that you feel will please the Savior. Find some peace in that. Now, have a Merry Christmas. May the love of the Savior fill all of our hearts.

      • Edy Meredith says:

        I admire Steve’s patience with you Scott. You very selectively choose what you give importance to and deny the things you won’t give importance to. You very patronizingly remind us that we have chosen not to go to heaven through our agency. Mormons are well known here in California for their misplaced confidence in their own righteousness and superiority. God hates a haughty look and says Himself that he hates pride. Please look into your own heart prayerfully and see the sin that is there. I readily admit my need for the Biblical Jesus.

      • Scott says:

        I admire God’s patience with all of us Edy. I, like you, also readily accept the Jesus of the Bible. Why do you go about attacking Mormon’s? Or attacking my post? What in my post was an attack on Steve or anyone? Nothing. As a former Californian, I can say my non-member friends didn’t feel the way about me that you profess they did. Yes God hates a prideful heart. You had better take a close look at yours too. We all fall short of the Glory of God, and we could all use each other’s help in lifting each other up rather than knocking each other down. God bless you and have a Merry Christmas.

      • Edy Meredith says:

        Scott, I love mormons & have many mormon friends and family. I do not like mormon thought, many types of mormon behavior, and mormon doctrine. It’s not personal; it’s about critical thought analysis and evidence. If you feel the need to attack me personally, perhaps your conscience and the Holy Spirit are convicting you of your sin of blind faith. Come let us reason together, says the Lord in Isaiah.

      • Edy Meredith says:

        “I admire God’s patience with all of us”:
        Methinks that “admire” is too weak a word when talking about God, the creator of the heavens and earth. Scott, you could think of getting so familiar with God and Jesus that you would need to use stronger words–like I am in awe of God and His many attributes which are beyond my human understanding–inspiring, awesome in the Biblical sense, overwhelming reverence, awestruck, totally spectacular, unlike humans, fully perfect. Remember how the Old Testament (& New Testament, i.e. Paul) prophets were struck dumb, unable to move when they experienced God. You can admire a human, but that is not for the God of the Bible.

      • stevebloor says:

        Thanks for your comments guys,

        I respect your right to believe whatever you want, but for me, neuro-science has illuminated the workings of the brain to make me think that everyone has their own version of God created by their sub-conscious minds.

        It’s all very nice to believe in a God, but for me it doesn’t give me authenticity.

        I’m loving life as a secular humanist & scientific naturalist.

        Merry Christmas & I wish you Peace & Joy in the New Year!

        Best wishes,
        Steve

      • Edy Meredith says:

        Steve, I studied neuroscience and neuroscience programming, but it is totally inadequate to explain, describe, or challenge the power of the God of the Old and New Testaments as well as the power of this true and living God to make surprising changes in a person’s life. The visitation of God to a sinner is always surprising, deep & not superficial, amazing, and spectacular. Of course, I allow you your disbelief. I once thought the same as you do now. I pray that the God who made the heavens and the earth will bless you daily with all that you need.

  47. Sara says:

    Thank you for having the courage to speak openly about this. There are many of us who left mormonism because we discovered that it’s not what it claims to be. It’s a difficult decision to make, but for me it was a matter of conscience. I could no longer support it when I realized it didn’t come from Christ. The mormon church tries to paint a pretty picture on the surface, but underneath there is darkness… the false prophets the Savior warned us about.

    Many blessings to you!

  48. WOW!!! Thanks for sharing your testimony, I could feel and hear the pain you are experiencing. I know what you are going through, my wife and I went through the same thing about 4 years ago now. The difference is, you live in England where there are lot of different religions and Mormonism is not really relevant or prevalent in some communities. I live in the mecca of Mormonism: Utah, it is not as easy here to make freinds with different people as it probably is in England. Here about 75% of the entire population is LDS, only about 2% Christian and almost 5% Catholic, the rest are unaffiliated with any religion. Nonetheless, I can sympathize with what you are going through, it takes a lot of courage to do what you did, and others who leave the LDS church. I thank God that so many of us find the real Jesus of the Bible and pray that many will continue to do so and have the courage like you to search and find the truth.

  49. Matter Unorganized says:

    Steve,

    The fact that the church forbade you from telling other members what you had discovered speaks volumes. It only proves my suspicion that the church has much to hide, and much to lose if the truth is brought to light.

    The fact that you realize they hold no authority over you is liberating!

    I wish you the best of luck on your journey!

  50. urloony says:

    Your letter is now the topic of an AntiMormon forum to which I have been commenting. I’m an active LDS member and can’t help but notice the cliche in your writing about a church coverup, and then never explaining what that coverup entails. If you’re going to be so bold as to violate the church’s request that you be silent on the matter, why not just post the details of what exactly it was that you discovered?

    • stevebloor says:

      Good question.

      Read “An Insider’s View of Mormon Origins” as a start. Then “Journal of Discourses”.
      You could try http://mormonthink.com

      Etc.

      Check my links page on my blog.

      After 46 years faithful membership & service in the Church I never knew the truth about Mormonism’s origins.

      Most members don’t!

      • urloony says:

        That’s what I suspected, you have no real personal insight to offer. Just a typical disaffected Antimormon attitude.

      • jahedgpeth says:

        @ Urloony:

        You are in the phase of what Kubler-Ross defines as “denial”. It may take years to move past this stage but the door has already been open with regard to the truth and it will change you forever.

      • Marty says:

        It seems that Grant Palmer has provided the catalyst for your conversion out of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. You have placed yourself in a precarious position…one which will not yield the dividends you seek.

        I am utterly amazed that you believe Grant Palmer is the source of truth about the LDS church simply because he is touted as an “Insider” by signature books.

        Perhaps you should read some reviews of his work before you throw away your exaltation based on his opinions and those things he says simply “ring true”.

      • stevebloor says:

        Dear Marty,

        Oh it were so simple!

        As good a man as Grant Palmer may or may not be, I no more base my decision on his say so than you do Joseph Smith.

        The only difference between me now & when I was a TBM is I give my critical thinking skills pre-eminence over my feelings.

        I have not only read Church books, but have studied some neuro-science & psychology.

        As a Podiatrist I am trained to diagnose by looking at evidence in the form of patient history, signs & symptoms, clinical & laboratory tests etc. in order to come to a decision.

        It is unwise & un-professional to base a patients treatment on a ‘feeling’ or on one bit of evidence.

        Yet in the Church we are encouraged to forego our mental reasoning & rely predominantly on ‘feelings’.

        Sadly truth doesn’t care how you feel about it.

        My decision was based on reasoning, experience & evidence.

        As painful as it was for me to come to terms with a lifetime of false belief, the feeling of discovering truth is wonderful.
        Dealing with the changes in my life, especially in relationships when members now shun or avoid me, or worse attack me, has been a source of sadness.

        But the reality of the world outside of Mormonism is a more beautiful & wonderful place than I ever imagined.

        At first I didn’t think I could live without gospel. I was so programmed to believe in it. But now I realise that was a superstitious fear which is completely unfounded.

        So even though I wasn’t looking for it, the truth really does set you free!

  51. mikeutah says:

    @Urloony, so long as we are blanket stereotyping people, your dismissal without investigation and snarky attitude is what I would suspect from a believer who would rather remain comfortable in their belief than entertain evidence that may overwhelmingly challenge it.

    • urloony says:

      On the contrary, I regularly examine evidence that challenges my beliefs. Steve’s letter implies some sort of new information that he discovered as a bishop with regard to a coverup. Under scrutiny however, Steve produces nothing more than links to Antimormon website and a recommendation to read the JoD. Where is the great coverup? Where’s the hidden history? It seems counterproductive that a church that apparently is so interested in covering up it’s past, would continue to publish the JoD, History of the Church, as well as numerous other historic volumes. It is also preposterous that an apparent 43 year old veteran of the church “never knew the truth about Mormon origins.” What does that even mean? You finally got around to reading the JoD and disagree with the commentary there? You found about Smith’s polyandry and now you’re “shocked.” Do you think that BY was a racist and can’t bear the thought? There is no new ground being treaded here. It’s the same old Antimormon rhetoric.

      • Boe says:

        @ Urlooony,
        I was a Mormon for 40 years and never heard a word, from an official source, about the fact that Joseph Smith had more than one wife. In fact the church’s own website, JosephSmith.net http://josephsmith.net/josephsmith/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=031f001cfb340010VgnVCM1000001f5e340aRCRD&locale=0 says that “Joseph and Emma Smith centered their marriage and family in the gospel of Jesus Christ—an example to all.”
        If we all followed his example, we’d all be in jail with Warren Jeffs, or shot dead by one of 11 jealous husbands, who’s wives he was boinking, which contributed to Smith’s death.
        Since you’re faaaaar more enlightened than I was as a Mormon, please answer this one question for me, how do you reconcile the FACT that Joseph Smith practiced polyandry with the LAW of plural marriage, still contained in D&C 132:61-65, which clearly condemns the practice as adultery, and which Smith clearly violated in about 6 different ways?

      • mikeutah says:

        You can read this blog post I made about this very topic of the church not teaching the full truth due to it not being “faith promoting”, aka, a whitewash, coverup, or deception. http://exmormonscholarstestify.org/micah-mcallister.html In it I quote Elder Packer and his reasons for feeling justified in teaching a modified version of events. This is indisputable.

      • Peter Bowen says:

        @urloony

        I was a member for 36 years and I was “shocked” when I found out about Smith’s polyandry.

        I still “can’t bear the thought” that BY was racist, and then preached that as the Lord’s will.

        The behavior of both of these men was disgusting, I could not reconcile that with what I’d been taught, and with my own understanding of what is right. Do you condone their behavior?

      • Boe says:

        I have zero respect for anybody who remains Mormon after learning about Smith’s polyandry, especially given the FACT that as a Mormon, you must believe the Doctrine and Covenants 132 is the “word of God” which clearly condemns that practice as adultery and threatens anybody who violates it with destruction,
        The only lame excuse I’ve ever seen for Smith’s practice of screwing other men’s wives, was in response to In Sacred Loneliness. The author said that it was hard to understand in this day and age, but that you had to put yourself in the mindset of a Mormon in the 1840′s Nauvoo. It was for ‘dynastic purposes’. IOW, it was to build up Smith’s dynasty, Like an Egyptian Pharaoh. Oh, well, that explains it!
        As long as I screw your wife for ‘dynastic purposes’ it’s cool with God, so you ought to be cool with it too!
        I don’t want anybody who uses that kind of logic anywhere near my wife or kids, since they can just as easily justify their own atrocities.
        “Convince them of absurdities and they’ll commit atrocities.”

      • stevebloor says:

        Thanks for your comments.

        If somebody is pro-truth does that make them anti-Mormon by definition??

        I’m not anti-anything, just pro-truth.

        I’ve never been told or encouraged to read anything outside of the correlated Church programme.

        In fact as a Bishop I had to enforce a ruling that nobody in the ward taught anything other than from the correlated manuals.

        When someone did I very quickly corrected them!

        On one occasion a HPG instructor taught from Doctrines of Salvation. I had to correct him & re-teach the class according to current correlated doctrines.

        Sadly no-one is encouraged to think for themselves. Or use critical thinking skills.

        “When the prophet speaks the thinking has been done!”

        Sad waste of brain power if you ask me!

      • AnotherExBishop says:

        urlooney – at least you have been name properly

        It’s always been about damage control for the church. It started with Joseph Smith as he kept his affairs silent even to his wife (he failed)….it morphed to Brigham Young(Mountain Meadows – to name just one – also a failure)…..it lead to the polygamous underground (John Taylor). Listen…I believe Steve should have told the church to jump through a donut hole when they told him to be silent….when the church realizes that it has no control/authority over you….they get ansty and nasty – especially when you have served in a higher profile calling like bishop (a bishop can make a lot of tithe payers question their belief)…..I give Steve a lot of credit…he acted in a dignified way… If he had gone through the excommunication phase he could have reached out to over 15 of his brothers (throw them a life-line) – I’ve sat through several of these “courts of love” and I always leave shaking my head….protecting the good name of the church is a difficult process these days….especially when the individual has done no wrong….as a former bishop and an active memer of the church I ask you….urlooney….to open your mind….I really like Steve’s comment, “if the church weren’t true….would you want to know….think about that one for a while…….think I’ll use that one on my wife.

      • stevebloor says:

        Try http://mormonthink.com

        It’s about as unbiased as you can get when presenting uncomfortable truths & is accessible for members to read in a non-confrontational way.

        I’m recommending the website for a first start on a member’s voyage of discovery.

  52. Sakura says:

    Powerful letter you wrote Steve! May I ask what you read that led you to your decision?

  53. Viviana says:

    Wow, your letter touched me in a deep way, very well written. I’ve been out since I was a junior in college. I hope that things with your family are good, and welcome to the ex-mo world!

  54. Edy Meredith says:

    I always rejoice when someone discovers the truth about the mormon church. Go to Youtube and
    read my testimony of leaving mormonism: Edy Meredith Testimony . None of my brothers & sisters will
    lower themselves to speak or write to me. My family of origin is really old time mormonism–joined 1835
    in Kirtland, Ohio.They are disappointed that I haven’t ended out in the gutter.

    Persevere–there is a loving God who created your mind and wants you to think. Come let us reason together,
    says the Lord in Isaiah.

  55. Edy Meredith says:

    I always rejoice when a mormon discovers the truth about mormonism and faces
    up to it. Go to Youtube and watch my testimony of leaving mormonism: Edy Meredith Testimony

    Persevere. There is a loving God who created you and your mind who
    wants you to think. ‘Come let us reason together’ says the Lord in Isaiah

    • Lynn says:

      Edy. Your testimony got me out! I listened to it several times in 2010.

      • Edy Meredith says:

        Lynn–I praise God for you and for the internet where we can support each other and get truthful information. Merry Christmas–Joyeaux Noel–in all languages. Edy Meredith

  56. Pingback: Wow « Runtu's Rincón

  57. What a brave letter that is. I cannot imagine how difficult things must be for you. I went through a similar experience a few years ago, but I wasn’t a bishop, so it was easier to leave more quietly and with less upset. I sincerely wish the best for you and your family and again just want you to know that I understand and support you. Well done.

  58. By the way, I put a link to your letter on my blog, if that’s all right with you. If not, let me know, and I’ll remove it.

  59. Alex says:

    If the church is true then it sure matters why we left and we had better repent if we want to live nigh unto nigh unto Kolob for eternity. If the church isn’t true then it really doesn’t matter why you left Steve. But alas I know the feeling of wanting to leave for the “right reasons” as a 200 page document I made while I was a young Bishopric counselor in my late 20s who was suddenly faced with a difficult challenge trying to resurrect my testimony.

  60. Faith says:

    Very moving. I know how difficult it has been to leave the church myself, and I was inactive for quite some time. You and your family will be in my thoughts.

  61. Rachel says:

    Your letter was extraordinary. I left the Mormon church around 10 years, as a 16-year-old. I was the only non-believer in a large family. My leaving was a huge shock, given that I wasn’t a problem child in any way — I attended seminary, church, and Mutual, got good grades, and stayed out of trouble.

    The next steps will be very, very hard but in my humble opinion, will ultimately lead to a peace that the Mormon church was unable to provide.

    Thank you so much for sharing this letter with us. I am glad that I am not alone.

    • stevebloor says:

      Hi Rachel,

      WOW!

      I applaud your bravery as a 16 year old.

      Thanks for your comments.
      Best wishes,
      Steve

      • Rachel says:

        Keep sharing — I really wish I had known about all these Internet forums when I was in the process of leaving. When I left, I was just a very scared and hyper-rational kid who couldn’t reconcile the teachings of the Church with the world around me. Leaving was very lonely and very scary experience for me. Posting, although it opens you up to criticism, also lets people know they are not alone.

      • Edy Meredith says:

        I left 31 years ago when the process of leaving was particularly isolating—no internet, no support groups of any kind. I’m glad for all the support there is now for those who want to embrace truth and leave the deception of mormonism.

  62. urloony says:

    @Boe
    Boe:“I was a Mormon for 40 years and never heard a word, from an official source, about the fact that Joseph Smith had more than one wife.”

    Why is your ignorance the fault of the church? The fact that Joseph Smith practiced plural marriage is published in dozens of church publications. Examples include the Encyclopedia of Mormonism, John A. Widtsoe: Evidences and Reconciliations, Joseph Fielding Smith: Answers to Gospel Questions, vol. 3, and B. H. Robert: Comprehensive History of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, vol. 4, and more recently in a Bushman’s Rough Stone Rolling.

    Boe:“Since you’re faaaaar more enlightened than I was as a Mormon, please answer this one question for me, how do you reconcile the FACT that Joseph Smith practiced polyandry with the LAW of plural marriage, still contained in D&C 132:61-65, which clearly condemns the practice as adultery, and which Smith clearly violated in about 6 different ways?”

    First a little history. All but two of Joseph’s polyandrous marriages occurred before July 1843. After D&C 132, there were only two polyandrous marriages. While I believe that Joseph Smith was involved sexually with his polygamous marriages which came later, I don’t believe that that was the case with his polyandrous marriages. There is no data either way to determine the truth with regard to whether his polyandrous marriages were intimate, so it’s speculation either way. I would suggest that from the evidence we do have, namely that there were no children born of his polyandrous relationships, and what I find far more intriguing, the fact that the husbands of those women were close friends of his that remained close friends of his to his death. If it was the case that he was not intimate with his polyandrous wives it would certainly have been easier for him to retain his friendships, comply with what he had been commanded to do which was to enter into these marriages, and also comply with D&C 132.

    • HPinstructor says:

      @urloony: You do know your church history, and I have a lot of respect for that.

      I think I probably know about what you know, because in hopes of being a really good church member and instructor (I teach HIgh Priests), I read things like B.H. Roberts comprehensive history, Elder Bushman’s book, etc.

      But in light of the way you describe Joseph Smith, especially when you consider that he denied all this to Emma, in his journal, and to many church leaders…I have a problem which I’m wondering if you share. Knowing what we know, I wince when I encourage primary children to sing Praise to the Man, or try to convince impressionable 19-year-olds to go out and hail him as a great prophet.

      I actually wonder if you and I aren’t like the faithful FLDS who hail Warren Jeffs as a prophet.

      I’m torn, because I see the good in the church and love our friends who are such great people. But I carry this feeling of sleaze around about Joseph Smith. Does it not get to you?

    • Boe says:

      You have not reconciled it obviously, you’re just denying that he did the obvious. You’re denying the obvious. Like it says clearly in D&C 132 Gods stated purpose for practicing polygamy was to raise up a righteous seed, IOW, to reproduce, with good seed, like Joseph’s. To assume that he didn’t consummate his illicit relationships with the wives of other men, flies in the face of logic, and Todd Compton’s conclusions in In Sacred Loneliness. I take it you’ve got more cross references to back up your contrary claims than Todd Compton? Like I said, I have no respect for anybody who can justify polyandry, when it clearly violates the law of god in at least 6 different ways. Unless your God is a liar. Either your God is a liar or Joseph’s Myth is an adulterer, or both, either way it’s just quite a relief not to have to defend that embarassing nonsense.
      You’re actually just making a perfect object lesson for what Carl Sagan said, “Religion is just a community of people who gather together on a regular basis to reassure each other that it’s still okay to continue subscribing to absurdities. But for me, it’s best to see the world the way it actually exists, rather than persist in delusion, no matter how comforting that might seem.”
      No religion is more absurd or delusional than Joseph’s Myth, you’ll find out if you keep doing your own research and really trying to reconcile your beliefs with reality.
      Life outside of Plato’s cave of black or white shadows is brilliant, technicolor in fact.

      • HPinstructor says:

        Well I think section 132 wasn’t added until the 1876 edition of the D&C, 14 years before the manifesto.

        Before that it read, “Inasmuch as this church of Christ has been reproached with the crime of fornication, and polygamy: we declare that we believe, that one man should have one wife; and one woman, but one husband, except in case of death, when either is at liberty to marry again.”

        It seems strange that during the years we practiced polygamy, our scriptures forbade it. When we forbade it, our scriptures supported it.

      • stevebloor says:

        Great point.

        Thanks HP Instructor

      • Boe says:

        Yeah, that is strange, kinda like it had to be a lie, right?
        Kinda like the whole thing had to be a lie then right?
        1+1=2
        Do the math. It’s pretty simple.

      • Boe says:

        1. FACT: Joseph Smith married other men’s wives, 11 of them.
        2. FACT: That practice is clearly a violation of D&C 132, which requires that a ‘plural wife’ belong to no one else. (women = possessions)
        3. FACT: According to D&C 132 and more importantly, the Bible, marrying somebody who is already married to somebody else is adultery.
        4. FACT: Consummating your relationship with somebody else’s wife is adultery.
        5. FACT: D&C 132:61 clearly states the ONLY purpose of practicing plural marriage, to raise up a righteous generation, to multiply, like rabbits.
        6. Since God didn’t restrict husbands from consummating their relationships with their plural wives, why would anybody assume otherwise?
        7. Whether he had sex with them or not isn’t even the issue, he violated the “Law of the Priesthood” before he heard it straight from God, and after he heard it straight from God.
        8. Fact. Then he lied about it so did 3 so-called ‘Prophets’, after him.
        9. The definition of a prophet is somebody who sees truth and speaks truth. If they lie, they’re false prophets.
        10. Joseph Smith was a false prophet, as were all the prophet who have followed him, including Warren Jeff’s, who seems to have patterned his life after Joseph Smith’s sexual practices and now sits in Federal Prison because of it.

        Joseph Smith was an adulterer, worthy only of what he got in the end.

        That should have been the end of his charade and would have been if the Mormons hadn’t been so committed to their adulterous, deceitful, communal lifestyle. It’s still deceitful and communal, it’s just now they think they’re the arbitors of morality in this country, even though they worship a false prophet who was a pedophile, adulterer and a con man. But the con’s on them. Unfortunately if Mitt Romney gets elected President, the con is going to be foisted upon the rest of us too. yippe. If you liked the after effects of the Bush Era, you’re going to love the after effects of the Romney era.

        Just breaking down D&C 132 to my wife, who’s been in the church for 40 years, made the light come on for her and she saw reality for what it was.
        Reality is great Mormons, welcome to it. haha

    • Allan says:

      The ignorance of most members of polyandry is the church’s fault because the church has explicitly denied it in the past in its official publications and because it avoids the topic in it lessons. Church history is a regular topic in church classes but you will never learn of Joseph Smith’s polyandry, teen brides, or dynastic marriages. The reasons for this are pretty obvious. At the same time the church doesn’t deny them because it can’t. It just stronly discourages their discussion and publication which is why your average member doesn’t know about them. Many, upon discovering these facts quit the church.

      Your comments about intimacy are pure speculation and wishful thinking. The theories about dynatic marriages are simply attempts to come up with alternative reasons for marriages that don’t involve sex. The problem is that if sex wasn’t involved then there wouldn’t have been a need for secrecy and there wouldn’t have been any outrage or accusations of adultery. But there was. The simple fact is that plural marriage was about sex. It granted sexual access to the spouses and this is why there was such outrage whether or not the marriages were consummated. And you are leaving out in your comment the fact that the church itself produced affidavits from some of Smith’s plural wives that the marriages were consummated to prove to the rlds church the truthfulnes of polygamy.

      I feel like the church commits lies of ommission regarding polygamy knowing full well how many of its members would react if they knew the the truth. I felt sick to my stomach when I read Boyd Packer’s talk to church educators telling them that not everything that was true was useful when encouraging them to hide such faith destroying things in church history.

      • nickleus says:

        “the church itself produced affidavits from some of Smith’s plural wives that the marriages were consummated to prove to the rlds church the truthfulnes of polygamy”
        do you have a source i could refer to? i’ve never heard this before. interesting.

      • Lynn says:

        Utlm.org
        Mary Elizabeth Rollins Lightner, the wife of Adam Lightner, stated: “Joseph said I was his before I came here and he said all the Devils in Hell should never get me from him, I was sealed to him in the Masonic Hall,… by Brigham Young in February 1842 and then again in the Nauvoo Temple by Heber C. Kimball….” (Affidavit of Mary Elizabeth Rollins Lightner, as cited in No Man Knows My History, page 444) In a speech given at Brigham Young University (see Mormonism—Shadow or Reality? pages 215-216), Mrs. Lightner said that Joseph claimed an “angel” came with a “drawn sword” and told him that if he did not enter into polygamy “he would slay him.” She frankly admitted that she “had been dreaming for a number of years that I was his [Joseph's] wife.” Since both Joseph and herself were already married, she “felt it was a sin.” Joseph, however, convinced her that the “Almighty” had revealed the principle and while her “husband was far away,” she was sealed to him.

      • Allan says:

        From http://www.i4m.com/think/history/joseph_smith_sex.htm:

        3. But did Joseph Smith obey the commandment and have sex with his wives?

        Compton writes:
        “Because of claims by Reorganized Latter-day Saints that Joseph was not really married polygamously in the full (i.e., sexual) sense of the term, Utah Mormons (including Joseph’s wives) affirmed repeatedly that Joseph had physical sexual relations with his plural wives-despite the Victorian conventions in nineteenth-century American religion which otherwise would have prevented mention of sexual relations in marriage.”

        - Faithful Mormon Melissa Lott (Smith Willes) testified that she had been Joseph’s wife “in very deed.” (Affidavit of Melissa Willes, 3 Aug. 1893, Temple Lot case, 98, 105; Foster, Religion and Sexuality, 156.)

        - In a court affidavit, faithful Mormon Joseph Noble wrote that Joseph told him he had spent the night with Louisa Beaman. (Temple Lot Case, 427)

        - Emily D. Partridge (Smith Young) said she “roomed” with Joseph the night following her marriage to him and said that she had “carnal intercourse” with him. (Temple Lot case (complete transcript), 364, 367, 384; see Foster, Religion and Sexuality, 15.)

        joseph smithIn total, 13 faithful latter-day saint women who were married to Joseph Smith swore court affidavits that they had sexual relations with him.

        - Joseph Smith’s personal secretary records that on May 22nd, 1843, Smith’s first wife Emma found Joseph and Eliza Partridge secluded in an upstairs bedroom at the Smith home. Emma was devastated.
        William Clayton’s journal entry for 23 May (see Smith, 105-106)

        - Smith’s secretary William Clayton also recorded a visit to young Almera Johnson on May 16, 1843: “Prest. Joseph and I went to B[enjamin] F. Johnsons to sleep.” Johnson himself later noted that on this visit Smith stayed with Almera “as man and wife” and “occupied the same room and bed with my sister, that the previous month he had occupied with the daughter of the late Bishop Partridge as his wife.” Almera Johnson also confirmed her secret marriage to Joseph Smith: “I lived with the prophet Joseph as his wife and he visited me at the home of my brother Benjamin F.” (Zimmerman, I Knew the Prophets, 44. See also “The Origin of Plural Marriage, Joseph F. Smith, Jr., Deseret News Press, page 70-71.)

        - Faithful Mormon and Stake President Angus Cannon told Joseph Smith’s son: “Brother Heber C. Kimball, I am informed, asked [Eliza R. Snow] the question if she was not a virgin although married to Joseph Smith and afterwards to Brigham Young, when she replied in a private gathering, “I thought you knew Joseph Smith better than that.”” (Stake President Angus M. Cannon, statement of interview with Joseph III, 23, LDS archives.)

  63. urloony says:

    @mikeutah
    LOL at exmormonscholars. When that site was first published a couple of years ago I thought it was a parody of DC Peterson’s site. It became sad when I realized it was trying to establish itself as a legitimate site. I still find the stock photo of “scholars” on the home page hilarious. The level of scholarship itself is truly vast from health care providers to two-year technical degrees in refrigeration. It is truly staggering. George Washington was a slave owner, Martin Luther King committed adultery, and your pastor doesn’t talk about how the Bible has been changed. Just because something is omitted does not suggest a cover-up.

  64. Simon Southerton says:

    Steve,

    I had a very similar experience as a bishop when I spoke to my Stake President about my concern that American Indians are essentially all descended from Asian ancestors. He wanted to prevent me from talking about this with other members of my family! Like you I wanted it all to be true. I loved many aspects of the church and had served faithfully for many years in bishoprics and as a Young Men President. I was heartbroken to discover the truth.

    The Mormon Church insists that we believe the Book of Mormon is real history about real people. It isn’t. It is embarrassing White Man’s mythology. There is a consensus among non-Mormon scientists that American Indians across both continents are all descended from Asian ancestors and that there is no evidence that New World civilizations were not influenced by Old World peoples. The only people who see connections are Mormon apologists, none of whom are professionally employed New World archaeologists or anthropologists. The complete lack of Israelite DNA in American Indians is in complete agreement with the anthropological and archaeological evidence.

    It is insulting to Native Americans to keep foisting on them White Man’s myths concerning their ancestors. Their ancestors arrived in the Americas many thousands of years before Israel even existed. Currently there is another Mormon apologist (Rodney Meldrum) claiming that North American Indians are descended from Israelite ancestors. He is grossly distorting the DNA evidence to back his claims. American Indian DNA is most closely related to Asian DNA. Meldrum has no formal scientific training and he has openly admitted that he only presents evidence that supports his case. He now makes a living selling his theories to gullible Mormons.

    • stevebloor says:

      Hi Simon,
      Thank you so much for your comments,

      I appreciate your knowledge of DNA.

      As a TBM, faithfully serving bishop I really had to have faith in the ‘God of the Gaps’ in our knowledge, but worse than that, I now realise I had to have faith despite all the scientific evidence & research. In fact I had to believe that ‘black’ was actually ‘white’ despite seeing it was black with my eyes!

      Yet at the time I was willing to accept it because I hadn’t made the connection in my brain & had that ‘aha’ moment when all of a sudden I realised what was going on. I had been “seeing what I believed”, despite all the evidence to the contrary!

      As a podiatrist I had a certain amount of medical knowledge which flew in the face of Mormon dogma.

      For instance with our Mormon belief in God’s physical form. We believed that God & Jesus have perfect bodies which means they have feet like ours. Yet our feet are adapted primate hands! With all the structures of hands, including the muscles for apposable thumbs! Which actually makes them imperfect! Hence why Bunions (hallux abducto valgus) is so common, amongst a whole host of other common foot pathologies.

      I found it difficult to reconcile God having a perfect body, and yet also having an imperfectly designed foot!

      The ‘God of the Gaps’ for me was getting more and more powerful on a daily basis!

      Once my brain made the connections it was like a light going on in my head!

      Everything I had previously struggled to reconcile just fell into place.

      Occam’s Razor!! ;)

      Thanks for your wonderful & inspiring example.

      Best wishes to you & your family for Christmas & Happy New Year!
      Steve

    • Marty says:

      Yes, we are all indebted to you for your wonderful contribution to the vast body of partial information, falsehoods and oversimplifications available on the topic of the Book of Mormon and DNA evidence.

      Only those who are already disaffected would even recognize these comments as having any worth. You address this highly complex and sophisticated topic of DNA in such a superficial yet definitive way as to truly show your lack of understanding and compelling dislike of the LDS church in one fell swoop. Ignorance and hatred to not increase the cogency of your arguments.

      I understand why your leaders would be concerned about you discussing these topics with your family. You know just enough to damage the faith of others who are not disaffected like yourself, but you would do so based on incomplete information and context-destroying over-simplifications.

      I would suggest you familiarize yourself with the most superficial research done by LDS scholars on the topic of DNA and the Book of Mormon before you pound the pulpit of over-simplification too feverishly.

      • nickleus says:

        @Marty writes:
        “I would suggest you familiarize yourself with the most superficial research done by LDS scholars on the topic of DNA and the Book of Mormon”

        did you mean lds *geneticists*? any names? links? sources? reading suggestions? how about non-lds geneticists or do you disregard secular/objective science?

      • HPinstructor says:

        I’m fascinated with archaeology and even produced a PBS documentary on Biblical archaeology.

        I found these podcasts from Michael Coe to be really great:

        http://mormonstories.org/?p=1880

        He’s a distinguished professor at Yale and a good friend and admirer of Mormon archaeologists. He admires the church for funding really high quality archaeological research.

        Unfortunately, in his long career he found that it has never resulted in the smallest shred of credible evidence to back The Book of Mormon, heart-breaking as that is for a lot of us.

      • Mike Metcalf says:

        Do you have any idea who Simon Southerton is?

      • Edy Meredith says:

        Yes the LDS scholars’ research is simple & superficial.

  65. Pingback: “If the [Mormon] church is not true would I want to know?” | Defending. Contending.

  66. Fasten your seat belt Steve…..once the false teachings and doctrines of devils has been addressed much will fall into line as you delve into the study of Gods Word and God will certainly bless you and your family…..I speak from experience coming out of another cult….
    May God bless you and your family richly my friend!

  67. Nando says:

    You researched the subject thoroughly, reached a clear conclusion, and – most importantly – you had the guts and the backbone to move forward with your knowledge. You are an example unto the world, sir. Best wishes.

  68. urloony says:

    @Hpinstructor
    HP: “I have a problem which I’m wondering if you share. Knowing what we know, I wince when I encourage primary children to sing Praise to the Man, or try to convince impressionable 19-year-olds to go out and hail him as a great prophet. “

    I don’t share your sentiments regarding the Prophet. It’s funny that you should mention that hymn, because my kids, who are all in primary, have been singing that song quite a bit throughout the house, and enjoy it.
    It’s undeniable that many OT prophets were also polygamists and that it was sanctioned by God during those times, Abraham being a prime example. Church critics often hold Biblical prophets and modern prophets to different, often hypocritical, standards.

    HP: “I actually wonder if you and I aren’t like the faithful FLDS who hail Warren Jeffs as a prophet.
    I’m torn, because I see the good in the church and love our friends who are such great people. But I carry this feeling of sleaze around about Joseph Smith. Does it not get to you?”

    Do feel sleazy when talking about Abraham, Gideon, Jacob, or Moses?

    • stevebloor says:

      @urlooney Thanks for your comments. You are as persistent as I was till I had my epiphany.

      I’m sure no-one can change your mind. They couldn’t change mine. That’s not how our brains work.

      I really don’t want to waste mine or your time and energy, but I’m sure you enjoy it as much as I did.

      I strongly believe we only see what we believe, or are prepared to believe!

      Have you ever entertained the thought that all the stories about the old testament polygamous prophets you speak of could actually be based on bronze age myths & legends.

      That Joseph Smith actually was a sexual predator who concocted a story to justify & cover-up his paedophilia & adultery, and Old Testament mythology was a perfect cover story for the Prophet of the Last Dispensation!

      If anyone today behaved like him the Church would excommunicate him for unrighteous dominion, conduct unbecoming of a Church member, adultery, lying, serious sexual & emotional abuse, child abuse, persistent lying, criminal arson, to name but a few sins. And he certainly wouldn’t get a temple recommend ;)

      These charges would have not been recognised by me as credible when I was TBM. They wouldn’t worry me either because I revered Joseph Smith as a Prophet of God & ‘knew’ he was a great man. But ‘knowledge’ based on ‘feelings of the spirit’ is a damnable lie if not based on fact!

      When the ‘penny drops’ it all starts to make perfect sense.

      My penny dropped!

      • Marty says:

        So what do you call “facts” based on damnable lies?

      • stevebloor says:

        Hi Marty,

        I’m not interested in arguing with a view to convert another person to my opinion.

        I respect your right to believe.

        I’m just posting my personal experience of deconversion from a superstitious belief system, which until recently I ‘knew’ to be true, till I realised I was mistaken.

        I now realise true knowledge is not gained from ‘warm & peaceful feelings of the spirit’, as good as that feels!

        Facts don’t care how we feel about them.

        As an example, Joseph Smith declared polygamy to be an evil practice and his wife & the most of the Church believed him. He said God had declared it was wrong. Yet at that time he was involved in several polygamous relationships.

        Currently the Church teaches that the Book of Mormon was translated by the power of God through the use of the Urim & Thummim. It depicts Joseph sitting at a table with the gold plates in front of him & separated from his scribe by a cloth or curtain. Yet every personal account of the translation process written by his wife & other scribes tell a different story with the gold plates not even visible in the room & Joseph sticking his head in a hat using the same peep stone used in criminal activities from his youth!

        My testimony was not based on the facts, but a different version. A fictitious version of events.

        This is one tiny example.

        The whole of the origins of Mormonism & the evidences for the Book of Mormon is replete with them.

        My testimony, which I believed would enable me to gain exaltation one day if I was worthy, was based on stories which have been sanitised & twisted to be faith promoting propaganda.

        Very useful for increasing the faith of the believers, but not very honest!

        Therefore, my testimony was not exactly based on factual truth. I don’t believe a righteous, loving God would want his children to be saved by fictitious stories.

        My God (when I believed) was totally & scrupulously honest. To a fault!

        As I tried to be!

        Yet my interest now is in the whole concept of belief in general.

        Why do people all around the world in different religions believe in fictitious stories?

        All religions claim the truth. They all have adherents who are devout & genuinely sincere in their beliefs.

        Why can Mormons think their version of religion is true & at the same time so do all the others. Some religious believers, like certain Muslims, have even more fervour than Mormons?

        Can only Mormons think they have the fulness of the Gospel?

        I’m fascinated by the whole concept of religious belief generally.

        Hoping you enjoy the blog.
        Best regards
        Steve

    • HPinstructor says:

      @urloony: “It’s undeniable that many OT prophets were also polygamists and that it was sanctioned by God during those times, Abraham being a prime example.” Well, it was legal, they weren’t denying it to their wives and other church leaders and in their journals, and it wasn’t polyandry. And they also didn’t have D&C 104:1: Inasmuch as this church of Christ has been reproached with the crime of fornication, and polygamy: we declare that we believe, that one man should have one wife; and one woman, but one husband, except in the case of death, when either is at liberty to marry again.

      Nor did they have the most correct book on earth: Behold, David and Solomon truly had many wives and concubines, which thing was abominable before me, saith the Lord.

  69. Marty says:

    I think urloony raises and important question. Chronological proximity to Joseph Smith and the fact that the historical record does give us some context allows anti and disaffected Mormons to condemn Joseph with little effort. The latitude afforded the patriarchs of the Old Testament is not extended to Joseph Smith because of the sheer amount of negative and fallacious history that abounds on the topic.

    • mikeutah says:

      @Marty, I equally dismiss the prophets of the bible as I do Joseph Smith. There’s no inequality from me on the falseness of all of them. The old testament is one of the most grotesque abuses of power in written history, all in the name of God. Richard Dawkins said it best:

      “The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.”

      I recognize the very foundation of Christianity being bunk (the bible) which by default, makes Mormonism bunk as well, without considering the atrocities and lies done in the name of the Mormon God. So no discrimination from me between Joseph Smith, the bible thumpers and the Biblical prophets themselves.

    • Mike Metcalf says:

      @ Marty:
      We sing high praises to those German soldiers and citizens of World War II, like Schindler, who defied the orders of their Nazi commanders and leaders and refused to take part in the killing of innocent people. We correctly condemned those who, at Nuremberg, defended their own murderous activities by saying they were simply doing that which they had been ordered to do, including the murder of children.

      Abraham, the patriarch of the three world monotheisms, with something like 3.5 to 4 billion adherents on this planet, took the cowardly way out.

      Abraham should have squared his shoulders, looked to the sky and told God that if He wanted Isaac dead, He would have to go through Abraham first, because Abraham was willing to do anything to save the life of an innocent child.

      But now we revere this man who, if he were alive today, would be put in a high-security psychiatric hospital and allowed to have no access to children.

      No. I give no latitude to the bronze age tyrants of the old testament, nor do I revere the bronze age tyrannical god they all served with blind allegiance, much to the detriment of their desert neighbors.

  70. Marty says:

    @mikeutah, your dismissal of all christian religious texts places you in a different category of anti-mormon. Which in my opinion is safer ground than those who reject the LDS church in favor of evangelical Christianity for example.

    The problem with the quote by Dawkins is the complete and utter disregard for the social and historical context of the biblical text. Interpreting the events of ancient scripture through 21st century eyes is tendentious at best and completely incorrect at worst.

    • nickleus says:

      “The problem with the quote by Dawkins is the complete and utter disregard for the social and historical context of the biblical text”

      and what about the history of how the “bible” came to be? a strategic selection of books by the catholic church. but then again the king james version doesnt even include all the books the catholic church chose, not to mention all the hundreds of other books/writings that weren’t chosen to be included. how about judaism which “owns” a lot of the old testament, which christianity and islam are both based on? how about the historical context about when the new testament gospels were written–decades later than when they claim to have been written? yes, lets not disregard the social and historical context of the biblical text*s*! =)

  71. Jayci says:

    @ Marty How is it Safer Ground for those who Walk away from Mormonism into Christanity? Than those who reject Mormonism and dismiss Christ all-together? By that statement I was left thinking that your implying its ‘SAFER’ to be an anti-mormon if you don’t believe in Christ anymore. Safer for who? Basically could you clarify that for me. God Bless.

  72. HPinstructor says:

    @urloony: “Why is your ignorance the fault of the church? The fact that Joseph Smith practiced plural marriage is published in dozens of church publications. Examples include the Encyclopedia of Mormonism, John A. Widtsoe: Evidences and Reconciliations, Joseph Fielding Smith: Answers to Gospel Questions, vol. 3, and B. H. Robert: Comprehensive History of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, vol. 4, and more recently in a Bushman’s Rough Stone Rolling.”

    But what about adult converts like me? I had all the missionary lessons, read all the books suggested to me like The Book of Mormon, A Marvelous Work and A Wonder, etc., had a future General Authority as gospel essentials teacher. Imagine what it’s like for us to join the church, bring our families into it, pay our tithing and some years later find out.

    • urloony says:

      @HPinstructor
      “But what about adult converts like me? I had all the missionary lessons, read all the books suggested to me like The Book of Mormon, A Marvelous Work and A Wonder, etc., had a future General Authority as gospel essentials teacher. Imagine what it’s like for us to join the church, bring our families into it, pay our tithing and some years later find out.”

      I am also an adult convert. I joined the church near the end of my undergrad work in college and have been a member for 16 years. I spent a few years as an Antimormon before converting. I was raised as a born again Christian in a New England Congregational church. I frequently debated as an Antimormon using Ed Decker and the Tanners as my go to references. When meeting with missionaries I regularly asked questions about Adam-God, Blacks and the priesthood, and polygamy.

      I also served a mission and occasionally fielded the same questions that I asked as an Antimormon. I’ve been on both sides of the fence, and have no problem with people asking questions and doing their own research into the church history. As a missionary, the focus is on teaching Jesus Christ and the saving ordinances of the Gospel. If you feel “duped” because you weren’t taught about BY’s 45 wives as an investigator, you need to learn more about what you’re getting into before making a life changing decision such as choosing a religion. Stop blaming others for your inability to be thorough.

      • HPinstructor says:

        @urloony: “If you feel “duped” because you weren’t taught about BY’s 45 wives as an investigator, you need to learn more about what you’re getting into before making a life changing decision such as choosing a religion. Stop blaming others for your inability to be thorough.”

        Well I think the topic was Joseph Smith’s polyandry and sexual exploits, which he denied to his wife, to many church leaders, in his journal, and he destroyed a press to cover it up. You have to be pretty thorough to discover those things because the sources you quoted are not thorough enough.

        And the question was, if you get that thorough, so you know how immoral he was, how do you walk through the church doors and feel good about yourself even when you love the church and people like I do. I don’t see many people helping other members get that thorough because they get disfellowshipped when they try.

      • Peter Bleakley says:

        I think it’s a fair point that it could take a while for new members to come across this stuff, and there is a lot to get a grip on in LDS theology on a very wide range of topics. It’s understandable that doctrines and practices which have been abandoned by the Church a long time ago are not going to be top of the agenda. However, I’m still somewhat incredulous about Steve’s claim not to have known about Joseph Smith’s plural marriages, which he repeatedly refers to as central to his disillusionment, or different versions of the First Vision account. The references quoted above are not even the core curriculum ones in which these things are discussed. The 1999 manual for Gospel Doctrine, the main adult sunday school course, mentions Joseph Smith practicing plural marriage on p 182, any discussion of Doctrine and Covenants sections 131-3 had to address plural marriage, I was taught all about it as a teenager doing Seminary including the drama of Emma Smith’s struggle to accept it. The Institute course for Young Adults on ‘Church History in the Fulness of Times’ goes into the history of plural marriage pretty thoroughly and on page 256 refers to Joseph taking several wives and page 424 onwards has a lot about the conflict over polygamy with the U.S. government. Any book on Church history has a lot about it.

        As for the different First Vision accounts, there was a very thorough Ensign article about them in 1985 for example. Hardly a cover-up! Steve, you REALLY weren’t paying attention, Mate!

        http://www.lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=2354fccf2b7db010VgnVCM1000004d82620aRCRD&locale=0&sourceId=33e605481ae6b010VgnVCM1000004d82620a

        Before the internet made it all much easier in my experience most faithful members devoured a wide ranging library of sources which describe Church doctrine and history in great depth, some of which were given out free to all members at times, like the Journals of Discourses, ‘Mormon Doctrine’, and so on. I don’t know of any Christian denomination that goes as far as the LDS Church does in encouraging it’s members to be very thoroughly informed about and enthusiastic to research it’s history and doctrines from a very young age. It could even be argued that we spend quite a disproportionate amount of time studying and discussing these things compared to worshipping in many christians’ perspective.

        I fully accept that a grovelling apology for prolonged and inexcusable racial discrimination is long overdue, and that some, not all, Church leaders have been too paranoid in the past about trying to manage it’s message. This has been blown away by the internet and Church-sponsored efforts to make the entire archive of Church history documents available to the public starting with the Joseph Smith Papers project, but most of this stuff has been in the public domain for decades. Some members just don’t get excited about history and ferreting about in this stuff in such depth and are mostly focused on practicing their living faith in simple ways as they should be, it’s not a conspiracy, but I can only speak from personal experience growing up in the Church in England. Most of my fellow members and family and peers were very thoroughly informed and immersed in it all with glee from a very young age and quite happy to have our own opinions about stupid statements from General Authorities as well as the lovely free-thinking ones.
        Be honest Steve, did you REALLY not know that Joseph Smith practiced the plural marriage he went through such hell for teaching? Seriously? You make a lot of the importance of being truthful….

      • M Sutton says:

        Hmm, Peter you say you are surprised at Steve’s lack of knowledge in regards JS plural marriages. Well as a worker for the church for 5 years as surprised to learn of these things myself, especially as I went to many meetings where we were told that JS was a man who led the most Christ like life and obeyed all the laws of the scriptures including staying loyal to Emma and taking no other wives, this from the area presidency. We were told that others would try to convince us that this was untrue and that he had other secret wives. Much of the history of the church was indeed set aside and hidden, I worked for church history dept, and only with the internet is this information now being disclosed.
        Even church documents and commentaries from the time state that Joseph only had one wife, Emma, during his life:
        “”I had not been married scarcely five minutes, and made one proclemation of the Gospel, before it was reported that I had seven wives….This spiritual wifeism! Why, a man does not speak or wink, for fear of being accused of this…….What a thing it is for a man to be accused of committing adultery, and having seven wives, when I can only find one. I am the same man, and as innocent as I was fourteen years ago; and I can prove them all perjurers.” (History of the Church, vol 6, p. 411) Joseph Smith made this statement preaching from the stand to the Latter-day Saints in Nauvoo on Sunday May 26, 1844. At the time he had secretly taken at over 25 plural wives.
        And the scriptures brought forward by JS stated that plural marriage was wrong:
        “Inasmuch as this church of Christ has been reproached with the crime of fornication, and polygamy; we declare that we believe that one man should have one wife; and one woman, but one husband, except in the case of death, when either is at liberty to marry again.” 1835 Doctrine and Covenants, C1, p. 251

        I do not know who taught you seminary classes but as a seminary teacher of 4 years I never once had any literature that said JS had more than one wife, indeed most of the direction given told us to avoid even discussing the issue.
        The church does cover things up a tells outright lies, just look at the recent TV documentary that asked the question in regards to the penalties about disclosing temple rituals. I also recall a time on my mission when my trainer took me to an investigator who was very clearly informed on some of the very sensitive issues on church history ( he had gone to the USA to source most of his research) and when I showed some shock my companion told me it was all lies. I was so worried I took the issues to my mission president who told me again these were all lies ( in regards to JS marriages, the fact he joined the Methodist church and became a mason even after he was told not to!) and to put them out of my mind. When investigators did ask questions of church history we were always told to refer them to ZL’s or the AP’s who I assume used misdirection to stop these questions progressing any further.
        So Peter in answer to your question it is entirely possible, indeed probable that most of the church membership no very little if anything of the challenging issues in church history.

  73. Justin says:

    Hello from an ex-mormon right at the heart of it all- Utah County, Utah!

    I remember when the decision had to me made myself- do I continue to live a lifestyle which is fundamentally based on deceit, or find a new path that I can whole-heartedly adhere to?

    I’m glad to hear that there are still LDS people who are capable of a little critical thinking these days. Good to hear you’re doing alright. I’m sure everything will work out just fine for you, brother.

    Take care!

    -J.W.

  74. Simon Southerton says:

    Marty said:
    “I would suggest you familiarize yourself with the most superficial research done by LDS scholars on the topic of DNA and the Book of Mormon before you pound the pulpit of over-simplification too feverishly.”

    I am familiar with the molecular research of Mormon Ugo Perego which has conclusively demonstrated that American Indians have lived in the New World for about 15,000 years, and that the A, B, C, D and X lineages are all derived from Asia. Ugo has also admitted that no Israelite DNA has been found and he is aware of DNA research on 10s of thousands of Native Americans. Perhaps this is the superficial research you refer to?

    • HPinstructor says:

      @Simon Southerton, are you the Simon Southerton who wrote in a book, “Ten centuries ago a handful of Norse sailors slipped into Newfoundland, established small colonies, traded with local natives, the sailed back into the fog of history. In spite of the small scale of their settlements and the brevity of their stay, unequivocal evidence of their presence has been found. Just six centuries earlier the Book of Mormon tells us, a climactic battle between fair-skinned Nephites and dark-skinned Lamanites ended a millennial dominion by a literate, Christian, Bronze Age civilization with a population numbering in the millions. Decades of serious and honest scholarship have failed to uncover credible evidence that these Book of Mormon civilizations ever existed. How is it that they remain a great civilization vanished without a trace, the people along with their genes?”

      If you are, many thanks. The book is wonderful.

      • Simon Southerton says:

        Yep. Guilty as charged. Glad you enjoyed my book.

        It seems that Marty and urloony have only read what LDS apologists write about my book. They would be feeling the familiar taboo that Mormons feel about reading books that are not approved by the church. In my book I discuss the Limited Geography at length. About a thousand natives have been DNA tested in Mesoamerica and no Israelite DNA has shown up.

        But its easier for the apologists to say I just bang away at the hemispheric geography. That way its easier to dismiss me as an ignorant fool and those who can’t be bothered to think for themselves seem to like their work.

    • AnotherExBishop says:

      Simon,

      Thank you for popping up in this thread. I bought Losing a Lost Tribe when it appeared in Amazon years ago. The DNA issue and the Book of Abraham are my “ground zeroes”. I too served as a bishop, high councilor and taught seminary as well. Years ago in a training session for CES teachers I approached one of the presenters, a institute director and asked him about DNA and the damning evidence against the BOM. I noticed the glossed over look in his eyes as he casually responded with a question of his own, “why would anyone want to harm such a good thing”, there was no denial from him regarding DNA – I got the feeling that these poor CES people are trapped. How CES instructors who truly know their craft stay in the program is way beyond me (they are the church’s whores – it’s basically a paycheck). Anyway….thank you for your scientific contributions.

      • HPinstructor says:

        Hey AnotherExBishop,

        Is there somewhere we can read your exit story? I am an ex-Bishop, etc., and just love my ward and the people in it and am trying to figure out how to exit without breaking a lot of hearts, including my own.

        I just finished Lyndon Lamborn’s book, Standing for Something More (which was awesome), and I’ve finally decided the right is to take the highest road out I can. I’ll miss it terribly, but I can’t stay and have a clean conscience.

  75. Brian says:

    Thank you, Steve, for finally publishing your letter of resignation (belated though it may be). Your thoughts and feelings echo my own at the time of my own deconversion. I was born into the church into a large family with ancestors who trekked across the plains with the handcart companies. For 40 years I was an exemplary Mormon; I always attended church, served a mission, graduated from BYU, taught Sunday School classes and seminary, EQ president (twice!), paid my tithing, obeyed the Word of Wisdom and Law of Chastity. I even knew about many of the more unsavory parts of LDS Church history but I was able to rationalize them to ease my conscience and maintained my faith intellectually by reassuring myself that there was a Divine purpose even if I may not understand it yet. But eventually, the troubling inconsistencies built up to the point that they could no longer be reconciled with blind faith and it was at this point that I began to look at things from a different perspective. “What if the church is not divinely inspired?” “What if Joseph Smith made the whole thing up?” And when I entertained these questions everything began to make so much more sense and puzzle pieces that previously had no purpose started falling into place. And suddenly my eyes were opened. I realized the church wasn’t true and I could no longer justify it. I had been misled my whole life. I felt like my world had shattered – my map of existence had been taken away and now I was like a small boat without a rudder in the middle of a very large ocean. The realization that I didn’t have access to all the answers of the purpose of life was a scary and daunting reality. So intimidating that I can understand why many people refuse to face it. But having faced it and accepted the reality, I could not ignore it or pretend it didn’t exist and I could not return to the blind faith required by religion (not just Mormonism). To do so would violate my own sense of honesty and integrity. I kept my disenfranchisement to myself for a long time because I was sure my family wouldn’t understand and I know how members regard apostates (we are a threat to their ideology, after all). The first person I “came out” to about it was my older sister. Her eyes began to well up and she bore her testimony to me and I just stared at her thinking to myself, “Are you kidding me? You think you can say anything with an emotional testimony that I haven’t heard before?” Now I just avoid the subject so as not to offend their perceptions – much like not telling small children that there is no Santa Claus (Note: If any small children are reading this, Santa Claus is real. For you!).

    Anyway, thank you again for your letter. It gives me hope that more people will start using their brains to think for themselves and shed their religious mythologies which, for all their good intentions, do more to divide than unite mankind.

  76. Mike Waters says:

    First, I am not nor have I ever been a Mormon. I would be interested in learning more about your journey “post mormonism.” have you enspoused another faith/worldview?

  77. Steve, your letter was quite good, and took quite a bit of both courage and integrity, and I commend you on both. You are correct in your conclusion regarding Mormonism, and to that end I am giving you a link to a website run by Ed Decker, who also came out of Mormonism, and who now knows the truth, and has valuable info for others leaving that “church”. I pray that you will at least noodle around in it…there is no need to NOT know WHO the true Jesus Christ is, as he is not the Jesus of the Mormon religion. I’ll be keeping you in prayer, as God is a rewarder of those who truly seek Him, as He defines Himself through HIS word, and not the false gospels of men like Joseph Smith.

    Here, dear sir, is the link: http://www.saintsalive.com/

    Another very good link, for the true Gospel is: http://www.wayofthemaster.com/flash/goodperson.swf

    As I said…Mr Decker has been where you are now, and his website is a solid ministry to those who have also been disillusioned by the lies found within Mormonism, and who truly want to know what is truth. Never worry, Steve, God will reveal Himself and His Son, Jesus Christ to you, if you really want to know Him. He is faithful. May the Lord bless your effort!

  78. Ben says:

    This is to Scott, and also to the rest of the the people who are trying to say that Steve doesn’t know what he’s doing and why.

    There is a book out there, a very dangerous book that is shaking the headquarters in SLC, written by a R.M. who found spirituality in an unlikely place. It takes a strong person but, if you have the courage to examine your beliefs honestly, you’ll understand why so many of us are leaving no matter how hard.

    If you’d like to find out for yourself and then let your honesty and integrity guide you…

    here’s the link http://www.2byEvanLord.com
    2 Lords
    (it’s a 20 dollar book that will change your life for the better forever)
    p.s. ya have to click on each page on the screen for about 7 pages till you come to where you can order it)

    • ScottC says:

      Ben,

      I have yet to read from Steve why he is doing what he is doing. He has proclaimed that he was duped and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a fraud but he has never explained what he new-found truths/beliefs are.

      I don’t want to hear what is wrong with the LDS church, I want to know what Steve now knows/believes and why.

      I’d also like to know if Steve took his name off the rolls of the LDS church or was excommunicated. Maybe I missed that information but I don’t think he has indicated.

      And the book you reference isn’t shaking anyone’s shoes at church HQ. Interesting hyperbole though.

  79. Henry Lions says:

    Dear Mr Peter Bleakley the link you provide to the “very thorough Ensign article” has been removed by the church site editors. I wonder why?

  80. It surely is entirely missing the point to suggest the student, (in this case Steve Bloor), is at fault for not paying attention, when the more concerning issue is that the instructor, (“The Church”), has failed to teach the subject matter thoroughly.

    I cannot recall having read about JS’s eleven polyandrous marriages in any church sponsored publication over the last 40 years, nor anything about his well attested method of procuring plural wives, some as young as 14, by claiming death threats issued by angels with drawn swords, or by promises of unconditional exaltation for whole families. Cherry picking for publication a few instances of JS’s polygamous marriages of which Emma may actually have been aware, and placing them in what amounts to small print, as far as present-day latter-day saints are concerned, hardly justifies claims of openness and honesty, and, may I say, it seems somewhat disingenuous to pretend that it does.

    Likewise, I have not seen the church producing any explanation which approaches credibility concerning the catastrophic demise of the Book of Abraham, which has been part of LDS canon since the 1880s. A straw poll of sacrament attendees in the UK would I suspect reveal gross ignorance about that particularly vital subject. Is it that they too have not been paying attention, or is it that once more the instructor has defaulted on his moral responsibility to make available the facts?

    Surely, when the man who is proclaimed to be the prophet of the restoration, translates a regular Egyptian glyph which we now know means “water” as “It was made after the form of a bedstead, such as was had among the Chaldeans, and it stood before the gods of Elkenah, Libnah, Mahmackrah, Korash, and also a god like unto that of Pharaoh, king of Egypt. That you may have an understanding of these gods, I have given you the fashion of them in the figures at the beginning, which manner of figures is called by the Chaldeans Rahleenos”, we as latter-day saints really have a serious problem to address.

    And surely when a book which Joseph Smith assured the world in God’s name was written by Abraham himself, turns out to be a standard Egyptian pagan funerary text post-dating Abraham by eighteen centuries, and doesn’t even mention Abraham, its claimed author, it becomes morally incumbent upon the instructor to relay that information fully in class time to the students, so that they may give that information their prayerful consideration.

    Or do you disagree, Peter Bleakley? Who is it in the end who needs to be bolstered by lies and cover-ups in your view: the Lord, or a church which claims through Joseph Smith to be the Lord’s?

  81. Lily says:

    Thank you for your courage, Steve!
    My journey was a little different, though the destination was the same.
    I was born in Provo, decended from Mormon pioneers and followed the trail laid out for me by the church.
    So at 30, married in the temple with 4 little ones, the eldest of wich was nearing baptism age, I set out to read some of the books I had been meaning to for years. I started with Jesus the Christ.
    As I read through the pages I felt a growing disconcert as it seemed that the modern church more resembled that of the Pharisees than it did what Christ taught. So where did it go wrong? I felt an intense need to know before I sent my daughter to the waters of baptism. Surely the truth of the gospel was there, I just had to go back to the begining and study the foundations of the church.
    To say I was surprised and dismayed at what I found would be a gross understatement.
    As troubling as the debauchery of JS was, the lynchpin for me was his inability to translate.
    Out of four documents that JS claimed to translate: the Greek Psalter, The Kinderhook plates, Egyptian scrolls (BoA), and the gold plates (the BoM), the three in which the original text can be examined prove without a doubt that JS had no such power. Am I to then believe that he could suddenly translate the BoM? A strain of credulity to say the least.
    Of course this news was at first devastating as the needle of my life’s compass began to spin. I finally asked a question I had never before considered,”What if the church isn’t true?”. Asking this question opened up my eyes as I began to research the history of my faith with a truly objective eye for the first time, and after 3 months of intense study, I came to the conclusion that the church was not true.
    Fortunately my dear convert husband was wrestling with his own doubts, like why do little children interview behind closed doors with untrained clergy when they can’t even be in an exam room alone with a trained doctor?
    I brought my concerns to him and he too me and I am happy to say that our love for each other was and is stronger than any devotion to an organization.
    I resigned in December 2008 and have since studied Christianity with the same clinical dispation and have also found it wanting.
    I now identify as a secular humanist and am raising my 4 children (3 of which are daughters!) without gods or superstition. Parenting has be come an adventure of mutual discovery with my kids where it once was a rigid set of enforced absurdities and paranoia that my children would not “choose” to view and navigate the world the “right” way.
    I would say, once the dust settled, that the bigest feeling I’ve had since leaving the church is relief. Especially for my daughters.
    My mind is at peace now that I no longer believe that this life is the ultimate test requiring the ultimate sacrifice in order to avoid the ultimate punishment and attain the ultimate reward.
    Welcome to reality, Steve.
    I am so happy that you could join us!:-)
    Sincerely,
    Lily O

  82. mignonfaget says:

    Hi Steve do you have an email address I can contact you at or are you on Facebook?

  83. Pingback: Europe LDS ‘Growth’ – All Things Mormon

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s