UK Bishops resignation letter

Its not often I would just do a cut and paste as a post, but I came across this and found it interesting, its a resignation letter of a Mormon Bishop from Helston ward in the UK to his Stake President, this ex Mormon Bishop no longer believes in the LDS church due to him studying its history,

as ever please make comments with your thoughts.

Dear President

Firstly, please may I thank you for your amazing example and love. I feel your love and concern for me personally, and hold you in the highest regard as a friend and brother. I have never had reason to doubt your sincerity and compassion for others, and I love you and respect you for it.

It is with great pain and torment of mind and body that I am forced to write to you. I deeply and truly would rather not have to write this letter. But, honesty drives my motives.

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. 

When faith in the unseen is replaced with indisputable evidence to the contrary, faith becomes redundant and, in fact, becomes a pleasant, if fanciful, myth.

I have not come to this decision lightly.

You have known me since I was in my early twenties. All that time, including twelve years in Yorkshire, I have diligently served in the Church with my heart, might, mind and strength. I have dedicated myself to God’s service since I was a young boy, including serving a full-time proselyting mission for the Lord in Manchester.

Since moving back to Cornwall I have served the Lord with a passion. I love serving the members of the Helston Ward. And it cuts me to the very centre of my heart to have to ask for this release. But, to do otherwise would be dishonest, and hypocritical now that I have discovered the truth about the church.

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.

I am resigning as bishop after much careful study, prayer and thought over a period of over one month. 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.

My initial foray into the world of previously unknown truths about the church (unknown to me), was sparked by a genuine and sincere desire to understand why my brother can no longer believe.

My research has only involved studying church history and commentary, Mormon and Ex-Mormon Intellectual websites and not “evangelical Christian anti-Mormon lies.”
I didn’t realise for instance that Joseph Smith practised polygamy, and was married to 33 women, most under the age of 20, one as young as 14. That some of Joseph’s wives were already married to other men when he married them; a practice called polyandry. All of these facts can be confirmed by a simple look at the church’s own website, familysearch.org.

I didn’t know that all polygamous marriages were illegal in the USA. Yet we believe in “Obeying, honouring and sustaining the law. ”

I have learnt an awful lot about the church which the General Authorities, though accepting as true, refuse to tell the general membership for fear of destroying faith!

There are many other issues, like; there are several accounts of the First Vision and Joseph Smith’s initial personal journal entry about the First Vision didn’t include seeing God the Father and Jesus Christ, but an angel. Then over the years the story got embellished till it changed to what we have today. Yet I was told it was the most momentous event to occur in this dispensation. Why didn’t Joseph initially record it correctly?  And there are so many other things that have just dissolved my faith to the point I can no longer bear a testimony of the truthfulness of this church or even God.

Can you imagine how I now feel? It’s like my whole world is crumbling around me. I no longer know what I believe, or who I can trust. I don’t even know who I am, it is a most frightening experience. At the moment it feels like a death in the family. My death!

My feelings have run the whole gamut of human emotions; from initial shock, to anger, despair, grief, sorrow, depression, fear, and concern about the future and relationships. I am very anxious about how my parents and other family members will accept my new beliefs. It changes everything! I no longer have a value system which is my own, I don’t even know how to think anymore. At one point I was fearful my marriage would fail, but luckily our relationship is stronger than that. We have decided to work our way through this together and now our love is even stronger.

All of this whilst still trying to function as bishop. I didn’t want to say anything to you because I wasn’t yet sure, in fact I was desperately hoping it was all a nightmare which I would soon wake up from and everything would be just as it was before. I would still prefer the church to be true, it would be so much easier. But my dedication to the truth compells me to be honest, no matter how painful.

For me it is more important to believe in an uncomfortable truth than a comforting fantasy.

I know that this will be impossible for you to comprehend, just as it was for me when I was a true believing Mormon. It’s just the nature of Mormon psychology, it doesn’t allow for uncertainty or questioning.

I am beginning to see prospects of a brighter future as my reluctant realisation changes to acceptance of the truth and a feeling of excitement to learn more truth.

I had previously believed I knew the truth as strongly as any latter-day saint. My faith was sure! It has been my sure faith which has always guided me in my life, but now that faith seems to pale into insignificance compared to the new feeling of light and knowledge I am receiving.

Some may say I have been conned by Satan, but it feels so good to be seeing things more clearly that I feel god is guiding me. The same type of feeling of “the spirit” that I had asbishop still guides me. My own feelings which are now enhanced with solid, reliable, testable scientific data. Faith can only be faith if the evidence of things not seen are actually true. When all indisputable evidence proves that they are not true, faith is dead.

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.

Just to be clear, my resignation is not due to unresolved sin, or to being offended by someone. I have not just got tired of my calling as Bishop, or become over-stressed. In fact I feel, more than ever, a deep and abiding concern for those in the Helston Ward, who I love with all my heart, and wish you to know that had I not had a significant epiphany, which causes me to no longer believe in the restoration of the gospel and church to the earth, I would still yearn to serve God and his children.

I tell you this so you can understand the sincerity of my disbelief in the church.

Again, please let me reiterate that I have complete trust in you as a friend and brother.

I welcome a conversation with you at your convenience and would ask you to keep this in confidence till I tell my parents myself.

With gratitude for your kindness

Steve

30 thoughts on “UK Bishops resignation letter”

  1. i AM SORRY TO READ YOUR LETTER OF RESIGNATION. I AM SORRY THAT YOU HAVE ALLOWED LUCIFER, THE SLICK TONGUED DEVIL, TO WORM HIS WAY INTO YOUR MIND AND HEART.
    PLEASE ASK THE STAKE PRESIDENCY FOR A BLESSING AND PRAY, DAY AND NIGHT, UNTIL YOU ARE ENLIGHTENED.

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    1. Interesting i am not sure whether you really are a mormon or are just trying to make them look bad but it seems you are saying that looking at evidence and acting on it is working with lucifer.

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    2. Wow, do you have any idea how insulting and predictable what you just said is, plus why the caps lock, that’s just plain rude.

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    3. **** off. At least he’s read the history and has a sound grasp of whats in ‘his’ heart and not some numpty with dunce written on his head!.

      The truth will set you free and truth is a certain point of view, yours, his and mine. So up yours hater!

      BTW, I have no idea if the church is true. I’m NOT going to say it is or isn’t Who the **** knows!

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      1. Hi Kris thanks for commenting, I am not sure who your comment is directed too but you are welcome here, please feel free to comment more if you want to chat.

        I have edited out some of your choice language however your comments are very welcome.

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  2. FIrst, I want to say that I’m glad this former bishop is open to the truth–even if it’s something that he desperately doesn’t want to believe. I find that shockingly, depressingly few people of any religion or belief system actually care more about the truth than they do about their current beliefs. As such, this bishop seems to have a rather rare gift among people of faith.

    That being said, some of the points made in this letter stand out to me as half-truths–which are typically a lot more devious and destructive than any lie can be.

    1) He says that the Church has covered this information up–yet he then states that the information that has brought him to this conclusion was–at least in part–freely available on the Church’s web site. I’m aware that the Church has previously dispensed with information deemed to be incorrect or unduly damaging to faith, but here he says that the Church has it on display! Perhaps he’s referring to other information that he could not find on the Church’s web site, but even so, he relates this finding to his discovery about the genealogy of Joseph Smith. I don’t know if anybody else has pointed this out, or if he realizes this, but it’s obviously a problem from a logical standpoint.

    2) He says that he was unaware that polygamy of any form is illegal in the US. The Church has made no effort that I’m aware of to keep this a secret, and indeed there are books on Church history that talk about this matter–some even published by, or in association with the Church. Furthermore, polygamy was not illegal in the places where it was practiced, during the time when Church members practiced it. The illegality of it was, in fact, a requirement for Utah to become a state–which was accepted mainly so that the US military would not threaten the people of the Church, and would instead protect them from mobs and such. Mormons stopped practicing polygiany (a form of polygamy) once this became law where they lived. As for the matter of women being previously married before marrying Joseph Smith, I wonder how much he’s looked into this. Many men had been killed or died on the road to Utah or before then. Some had doubtlessly been divorced. Still others had left their families over matters of faith. While I don’t doubt that Joseph married previously-married women, I do sincerely doubt that this bishop has the whole story on the matter. Also, in the 1800s, 14 was a common marrying age in the US, and was by no means considered illegal, immoral, or evidence of pedophilia. Many women who were not married and mothers by the time they were 20 were considered “old maids!” I’ve heard this matter brought up a lot among the more rabid/militant anti-Mormons, and it’s simply not a valid concern.

    3) I’ve also heard claims about Joseph Smith’s story about the Fist Vision changing over time. Some people claim that it’s changed more than do others (even amongst anti-Mormons). I’m sure it did change, as does every story told more than once. I do doubt, however, that it has changed as dramatically as this former bishop describes. First, I’d like to know where he got his information. Did he see an original document, tested and verified to be written by a credible witness (i.e. not rabidly pre-disposed to bias against Mormons)? Many people of that age who wanted to disprove Joseph Smith as a true prophet forged documents and spread baseless rumors in hopes of discrediting the Church, and more often than not, inciting angry mobs to plunder and even kill early Church members if they could manage it. Don’t forget the order by the governor of Missouri to exterminate all Mormons. Somebody planted a bug in that governor’s ear; otherwise he wouldn’t have attempted such an awful act. Without verifiable proof that this statement was made by several credible witnesses, I don’t think it’s worth throwing away one’s faith over.

    4) The former bishop cites infallible “scientific evidence” as a basis for his loss of faith. I have to ask, what evidence might this be? It’s well known that just about any non-Mormon Christian church you ask about the credibility of such “evidence” will say it’s absolutely or partly false and continue teaching creationism, faith, etc. anyway. Are we now cherry-picking what we think is credible based on what we agree with? I would caution any Christian who doesn’t want evolution to be taught as absolute, verified, undeniable, and infallible truth in schools to apply equal criticism to whatever other “infallible scientific evidence” is brought to bear on a religious topic. To do otherwise is to defy reason and logic altogether in favor of lashing out against somebody else’s belief system. If it sounds a bit familiar, then it’s probably because you’ve experienced it from the other end of that sword; it cuts both ways. Since science and religion have, as of yet, failed to agree upon a lot of things (although I think they will in the end), I don’t think taking “scientific evidence” on faith is a wise thing to do if you have any belief at all in God. Unless you can study and understand it as well as the scientists producing it, then you should view it all with equal caution.

    5) This former bishop has expressed that he now feels an elation over the truths he’s uncovered. This part I don’t doubt. Even half of a truth is still a truth until the lie starts in, and we Mormons believe that the Holy Spirit testifies of ALL truths, regardless of how we got them, or whether lies have been added on top of them. In many cases, I’ve known people to fall away from the Church for reasons such as these and then come back to the Church all the stronger as a result. I suspect that this is what is happening here, and that once the former bishop has had a chance to further investigate and re-evaluate these matters based on what further truth he’ll have obtained, he’ll probably come back to the Church a better man, and a much better-informed Christian because of it. What remains to be seen is whether his actions and associations past this point will have begun to influence his sense of pride when the time to re-evaluate these facts comes, and entice him to ignore any further truths as a result of not being able or willing to swallow that pride as a prerequisite to admitting he was wrong and coming back to the Church. I’ve seen this happen as well. Also of note, non-Mormon Christians typically present objection to the idea of listening to one’s feelings as a source of religious truth. This has obviously been a major influence in this former bishop’s decision to leave the Church; will you now say he was right to do so, and thus validate the following of such feelings?

    Bobby, I’d invite you to seriously evaluate what originally gave you the impression about God telling you to investigate the LDS Church. If I were a betting man, I’d put quite a lot into the kitty on the hunch that conscious thought alone didn’t tell you that this was the case. Without feelings behind it, such conscious thought, although typically better at logic and reason than the unconscious mind, is incapable of placing a driving motivation behind any thought, idea, or course of action. You obviously have such drive, so I would invite you to consider whether your feelings have had a role in pushing you onward in this desire. I don’t know if you’re in a position to consider this right now, since actually taking action in a way that is contrary to an idea to be considered can quite effectively prevent a person from fully, honestly considering any thought that would indicate such a course of action (such as seeking to convert all of us heathens/Mormons) to be in error. Again, a function of pride, but one so common that I can hardly blame a person for it. This is almost definitely better as a long-term topic of thought than as something to consider once and be done with it.

    Concluding, I think that this former bishop, while doubtlessly embarked on an honest-to-goodness spiritual journey, has been deceived by those who have presented him with such false (i.e. half-true) information. With any luck, and a child’s humility when it’s needed, he’ll come back to the Church a much stronger person than he ever could have been otherwise.

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    1. Hi Dane some interesting points, I am not this person so I will not answer to your points made about him as I am in no position to do that he may or may not look at this blog and comment himself. As you will have also seen he is by no means coming from my perspective either so this post is not about showing that I am right however it is showing that an honest search at the evidential problems behind the Mormon church does raise serious problems, however the psychology behind the Mormon testimony and how these feelings are so important is I know what keeps many members in their place.

      For me personally God has called me and challenged me to share the biblical gospel with groups like Mormons that claim they are the true Christian church and that Jesus is not enough for their salvation in its fullest sense, this also includes Jehovahs Witnesses, Christadelphians and many other groups. I am aware of the fact that I am a sinful human being and if I followed my feelings on everything believe me my thoughts on the Mormon church would be the least of my worries.

      On all levels when I look at the Mormon church I see extreme problem after problem, this post simply shows that honest people from within have the same issues.

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      1. Bobby, a long time ago, before your first Utah trip, you indicated that you had previously (a long time before that) been “challenged” by God to investigate Mormonism. At the time, you said nothing about trying to convert/help Mormons, so I can’t help but notice that you’ve changed your focus. The reason I ask is partly because of the issue of feelings and how they pertain to the gospel, and partly because I know from personal experience that if a person (myself as an example) wants to believe a certain thing/set of things, or thinks that something specific MUST be the case, he can easily and without noticing alter his perception of what God has, indeed told him, in favor of what he wants to believe or thinks is right. Thus, even if God is speaking to you in a way other than feelings (although I imagine it’s feelings + other things, as it typically is with me), then your own perceptions about right and wrong, and so forth will have a strong effect upon what you perceive him as telling you. In other words, I can’t help but wonder if he’s telling you something, and you’re telling yourself something additional that you attribute to God. It’s a very common phenomenon, especially among Mormons, who are taught to ask God about everything, but who are just as subject to human frailties of mind, sensibilities, and ambition as anybody else.

        With regard to this letter, I’m very curious to know where you found it. I did a Google search and was unable to find an original source. It sounds genuine, but if the source can’t be properly traced, then that’s obviously a concern. Also, and more importantly, I’d like to hear from the author, and have him read what’s posted here, if he’s willing.

        As for the matter of your relationship with God and what he tells you, it’s not really something that I want or expect an answer to. A lot of the questions that I ask like that are for the benefit of whomever thinks about them, rather than the person asking.

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      2. Hey Dane this comes from this blog http://stevebloor.wordpress.com/ the letter has since been password protected but does come from there.

        Dane God is by no means leading me to Mormonism, funnily enough recently I have played a part of seeing God lead someone out of Mormonism, this individual whose story will be on here soon is certain that God has now shown her the truth and feels freedom like never before.

        If God revealed anything to me in my investigation of Mormonism in the last 10 years is that it brings bondage in religion, whereas knowing Christ and being born again by faith in Him leads to freedom, ultimately I want Mormons to know this freedom and from my personal interactions with many Mormons over the years again and again I see that their assurance is from Church ordnances and not knowing Christ alone, this is what the bible shows Christianity to be and is why I do what I do. I have never been a Mormon I do not feel any hatred or anger toward the Mormon church but simply a desire for its members to be free in Christ from religion.

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      3. What a great post! I have a strong bleief that what ever you believe if it gives you happiness, peace, understanding and it does not harm any one else then it is a great bleief. I personally am Pagan, and do consider myself a witch. Have I been treated differently? you bet. I went to make a donation to a church that was by my university. I spent a lot of time in their park grounds being with nature and feeding squirrels. These grounds in the middle of the city made me feel at peace and brought me back to my calm self when classes were stressful. I was not allowed into the church, I was stopped at the door as I wear a pentacle. So the church did not receive my donation and ever since then I have been quite put off. I have also been turned down for jobs, and while I was traveling through Alabama was swarmed by several men who where trying to force me to my knees to pray to Jesus for my crimes of witchcraft. It has jaded me a little, I wont lie, but I try my best to see the beauty in all bleiefs.

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  3. A very moving letter, of someone who has come to realise the falseness of the organisation they are in.
    Similar to my experience on learning after 30 years as a Jehovah’s Witness that is was all basically untrue. The comment by the person above “Tony Sikes” is similar to those I got also. He seems to think its a sudden decision if he had bothered to read “Steve” on done a lot of research and thinking before coming to his decision. Likewise myself I spent nearly three years checking on everything about the JWs , teachings and history, before making the decision to leave, even then it was another year after I stopped attending meetings etc, before I formally did.
    As “Steve” says “Is it more important to believe in an uncomfortable truth than a comforting fantasy.”
    When you learn the truth about something, can you conscientiously go on believing the lie?
    Those who make such comments against those who leave, are just putting their heads in the sand. I have come across many a JW who KNOWS that the Watchtower is wrong. But through fear and sometimes not wanting to admit they are in a cult. They brush it under the carpet, but suffer for it inside themselves.
    It takes more courage to come out of such organisations, knowing that you may and do lose family and friends. Than to stay in and live the lie.

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  4. Bobby, thanks for posting that link; I’ll check it out.

    I hope you aren’t offended by my implying that God’s telling you something other than what you believe he’s telling you. I just can’t help but wonder whether you’ve thoroughly considered that possibility, as most people (myself included) tend not to, even though it’s an important thing to do. Whether he’s actively trying to tell you to be Mormon or not, I don’t know, although I have my suspicions (that you seem to adamantly disagree with). Please don’t take this as me pushing anything onto you; I don’t think it hurts to ask a person to think about some possibility or other. If it isn’t true, then a person will eventually come to know that; and if it is, I’ve done someone a service by suggesting it. It’s only a consideration, not a coercion or insult (at least not intentionally).

    I actually agree with you that many–perhaps most–Mormons don’t know Christ for themselves, and I, too see this as a major problem. Nevertheless, I see it as a problem amongst individuals, rather than the Church as a whole. I, personally, feel that I’ve grown a lot closer to God than I ever had in the years previous as a non-Mormon Christian, but that’s a result of personal desire, mindest, and actions, more than a result of any organization. The Church has helped me along a great deal with it, and the members have almost universally hindered in that same goal. Personally, I believe that social conventions are a natural enemy to truth and the true, personal knowledge of, and familiarity with the Almighty. Even the best doctrines can be perverted, and they are on a regular basis–both in the LDS Church, and in every non-LDS church I’ve ever been to or known about. Nevertheless, in this Church, I see these perversions as products of faults in the members (even those in positions of high authority in the Church), rather than the fault of the organizations or its lasting doctrines.

    Gordon, I can understand your point of view about becoming disenfranchised from a church. On many occasions, I’ve felt uncomfortable around people in my own church and felt that in order to become closer to God I had to avoid that kind of contentious or doctrinally false environment. I’m currently having a struggle with the members of my own ward due to their nearly fanatical beliefs in things that aren’t true doctrines, but that they assume to be so–and of the Church as a whole, no less!. I find that I often can’t be around any of them for a significant length of time without feeling that I have to correct them on bigoted or otherwise false points of doctrines. I realize that this is different from deciding/realizing that a church or religion is false, but the social implications are very similar. People will be bigoted towards those who they think are “of the devil” or some such, regardless of what their religion teaches. I’ve also known Jehovah’s Witnesses who’ve been shunned simply for being friends with those who have decided to leave that church. I think it’s incredibly sad, and that it takes a brave soul to break away from that fear and do according to one’s conscious. I congratulate anyone who does it, even if I don’t agree with the reasons.

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    1. Dane I think I would sum up by saying that here we are talking about the subjective. The reality is as a Mormon your feelings have heavily told you that the Mormon church is true whether that it is of God or not is the point of the whole discussion.

      However many other groups and religions of this world say the same thing, members of the 200+ offshoot groups from Mormonism all claim that they have a testimony that the main Mormon church is false and that theirs is the true one, this I know from looking into it and I am sure I could provide examples. In my position I have had strong religious experiences that I could look at and say wow I am right. However my epistomology or how I come to my belief in what is true is not just based on feelings, it is based on the bible, it is based on seeing many lives changed by Christ, it is based on my simple faith in Christ. There are days when my feelings do not aline with my faith, there are days when I dont feel like reaching out to Mormons, however I am so aware that I am a sinful finite human, and wheni have those those days of feelings aside from Gods word and what I know He has said to me I look upward to something more significant than my internal self.

      So the problem we have is that you, me and many others claim that God has confirmed from within that we are right, what does this mean? We need to look at external things and when we do that Mormonism has massive problems, this bishop has realized and acted, Mormons can only say what about your internal testimony?

      And I respect your comment that many Mormons do not know Christ regardless of the fact that you believe it to be Christs church, I respect your honesty and can say that it happens in my church too, however I would say that there will be by no means as many as the message of Christs gospel is taught much more clearly.

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  5. I really feel for this ex bishop, to stop believing in something and to leave all your friends behind is such a difficult thing to do. How courageous of this man. I knew you would get a post saying it was Lucifer influencing him, though it still made me sad. Realising something you believe in is false through study is harder than you might think. It happened to me when doing my dissertation on The Mountain Meadows Massacre. I didn’t read any Anti Mormon or Ex Mormon stuff just Church history and what I read horrified me. I hope this man has now found peace, It’s a hard road to travel but ” I never said it would be easy, just worth it.”

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  6. Interesting letter, I am hoping that Steve has not only found that mormonism is a lie but also comes to find the truth in Christ Jesus. Leaving mormonism is only part of the journey!

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  7. I really feel for this guy. His story is so similar to mine. I truly understand what he is going through. The old “polygamy started with Brigham Young and the move west because there were so many widows and divorced women” is not only misleading but an out right lie. I too was taught this for my entire time in mormonism which was 40 years. This is what was taught in church. I, like Steve, didn’t know that Joseph Smith was a polygamous or polyandrist or any other word you want to use to describe it (who really cares?) it was illegal during the time that Joseph practiced it. For mormons to say “Oh well, there were so many widows….etc”….proves that they don’t even know their own doctrine. For the reason Joseph Smith started polygamy, turn to section 132 in the D&C. It’s the new and everlasting covenant. It’s to be practiced by all mormon men. According to mormon scriptures, in order for a mormon man to become a god he has to practice polygamy. I especially like this part of the D&C:

    61And again, as pertaining to the law of the priesthood—if any man espouse a virgin, and desire to espouse a another, and the first give her consent, and if he espouse the second, and they are virgins, AND HAVE VOWED TO NO OTHER MAN, then is he justified; he cannot commit adultery for they are given unto him; for he cannot commit adultery with that that belongeth unto him and to no one else.

    62And if he have ten virgins given unto him by this law, he cannot commit adultery, for they belong to him, and they are given unto him; therefore is he justified.

    63But if one or either of the ten virgins, after she is espoused, shall be with another man, she has committed adultery, and shall be destroyed; for they are given unto him to multiply and replenish the earth, according to my commandment, and to fulfill the promise which was given by my Father before the foundation of the world, and for their exaltation in the eternal worlds, that they may bear the souls of men; for herein is the work of my Father continued, that he may be glorified.

    So according to this, the women needed to be virgins. So what was Joseph doing marrying other men’s wives??? Please study this out before making comments and trying to discredit others who HAVE studied it out.

    Of course the LDS church is now putting some of this stuff on their sites. They have backed themselves into a corner. I’ll use the example of polygamy and all those widows and the move west. If Steve has been a mormon as long as I was, then he was probably taught this as well. Now imagine going YEARS thinking this was the truth only to find out that it really started with Joseph Smith. You would think “cover up” at least I did. This may be what Steve is talking about.

    I wish Steve all the best as he finds his way out of the darkness that is mormonism and into the light of Christ.

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  8. I could have written exactly the same letter as this man. He describes, exactly the way I felt about Church Doctrine and History and yet you feel a sense of loss, like a bereavement because of all the things you will miss about the Church, including strong friendships; some of which endure you leaving and some do not. You also miss the callings and the people you served and what you taught as the truth that you believed at the time, from the heart. I believe it takes more courage to leave than stay, because as he says it would actually be easier to stay, but sometimes you have to do what is right for you and your family and when I think about my child and how they would be brought up in the LDS Church-I know that I made the correct decision. I couldn’t put them in the way of incorrect doctrine and beliefs as I now know that in a way it will always have a lifelong effect on me, albeit smaller than when I first left-there will always be an element of me feeling sad after being exposed to all that indoctrination and there is no way I want that for my child-or the rest of my family.

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    1. Helen,

      I feel the same way. But my children have had mormonism for most of their lives (one is an adult) While I was studying and researching, I was very verbal about it. I would talk to them about what I was learning and invite discussion about it. I was surprised to learn that my oldest child hadn’t believed any of it since he was 12 years old. He felt that we pressured him into the religion. Looking back, we did. I love the young man he has become. He thinks for himself which is something I had never done at his age. I’m grateful that he knows the true and living God of the Bible. They all do. I’m also grateful that they will not have to go through what I did and what this ex bishop has went through. It’s not an easy decision but the right one. Now we study and research the Bible and what great discussions! My hope for Steve and other mormons in this situation is that they don’t completely give up on Jesus, thinking that if mormonism is a lie then God is a lie too. I have a nephew who is right in the middle of this. Hopefully time and enough love will help him see that God has always been there for him, he was just misled by a false religion.

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  9. I’m grateful that he knows the true and living God of the Bible.

    Uh, I would say keep studying because the god of the bible is a pretty mean, capricious dude.

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    1. I guess if you don’t know God then that is the side of Him you will see, millions worldwide have been changed forever by the love of God and certainly do not see Him that way,

      but thanks for dropping by I hope you find this blog interesting.

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  10. I felt such relief when I read this ex Bishop’s resignation letter. My husband and I have just been through a similar experience. We were visited by missionaries and eventually joined a UK LDS Church and were members for 3 years. We had ‘good’ callings, paid our tithing, adhered to WOW – in fact we did the whole thing with trust and honestly thought we had found something ‘better’ than being mainstream Christians. We embraced Church life; loved Church members who are lovely, caring and good people.

    We had a thirst for knowledge – we knew a lot and wanted to know more about the history of this wonderful Church, we visited Utah, Palmyra, The Sacred Grove, Navou, Carthage Jail – we did the lot even The Community of Christ Exhibition where we discovered things we didn’t know about JS. We read the book “A Rough Stone Rolling” because we wanted to know more (the Church teaches us to learn – but the probably don’t mean learn about the Church!), Then we discovered The Book of Abraham to be complete fiction and the rest of the untruths came out. To us if one part of something is untrue the rest is discredited (like a CV – if someone (who doesn’t even profess to be a Prophet) lies on one thing on a CV and is discovered – can you believe the rest? The answer is NO.

    Had we been the whole truth about JS, BOM, Temple ordinances etc etc etc we would have started our journey with full knowledge – as it is we felt we were conned and felt duped because we were ‘fed’ only the credible bits. One thing we were not told was that JS ‘translated’ the book of Mormon by putting his head in a hat and staring at a brown egg shaped stone! (years before he decided he would be a Prophet he had used this same’seer’ stone to con people by telling them they would find treasures in a certain place, they dug deeply into the earth believing his word but when they found nothing JS told them the treasures had sunk deeper) – so – same stones, different purpose – do you think God would use this very same stone (which was used to con people) as a vehicle to translate scripture – of course he used the stone when he didn’t use the magic spectacles!

    For those who think I have been tainted with the devil, and that I am now apostate – nothing could be further from the truth because before we joined LDS we had both had that burning in our bosoms when we prayed and read the New Testament – MANY, MANY TIMES – THAT SAME FEELING – it is not something which comes only from the BOM – it is a feeling of LOVE for our Saviour and if you pray and open your heart to feel LOVE you will FEEL it – Try it – I strongly urge you to pray then read the Book of Luke reverently – you WILL have that burning in your bosom.

    Let me also say that before we joined LDS we had many blessings and a good life – however paying THOUSANDS of pounds to the LDS Church DID NOT ‘buy’ us more blessings AND NEITHER SHOULD IT (but that is what LDS are told).

    Let me refer you to a wonderful divulgence by a respected member of the LDS Church of the truth; look on UTube for “Why people leave the LDS Church (Mormon) John P Dehlin who is a 5/6th generation ACTIVE mormon and relative of Ezra T Benson – he gives a 1 hour presentation where he lists most of the untruths we discovered; he also explains how people feel when they discover these untruths and that was exactly how we felt.
    On the POSITIVE side – the LDS way of life is good – strong family values, food storage, 72 hour packs, honest, decent pursuits, abstention from alcohol and cigarettes (I’m not convinced the occasional cup of tea will kill me), visting each other – all good stuff and if any Christian Church set themselves up along these lines and studied the Bible that Church would flourish because people are now looking to belong somewhere but that somewhere must be a true place and not one where brainwashed primary school children stand up during the testimony meeting and say “I know the book of mormon is true, I know we have a prophet on this earth” – why do they KNOW, it is because they have been told by their parents who they love and respect. The big problem is a lot of people know the truth but how can a father explain to his adult sons and daughters that he was hoodwinked and the very thing he has indoctrinating them into is based on a tissue of lies – best just to keep quiet and keep praying they don’t find out for themselves.
    The LDS Church MUST come clean on these untruths because if they don’t now all this stuff will be publicised if Mit Romney stands for President in the US.

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  11. oh boy…..i know this man and his family very well…… i am yo yoing between the lds church and leaving been a member since 15 RM married in the temple see as an upstanding faithful member (but def not perfect!!) raised my 3 kids ( but now all less active which at times has broken my heart) and … then i hear more and more..i did know about JS and polygamy very early on but not about the ages or the other wives who were married or more importanttly for me Emma’s reaction…….i need help serioulsy from someone in the uk please email me

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  12. hello
    oh my gosh the people who speak to you like that in a way that is more satan than anything shame on them. thankyou for posting this friend i too was a latterday saint, temple worthy and attended when i could. but over the past 2 months i am no longer a member and felt to have my name removed.
    i was not able to go to the branch any more as im disabled and as its over an hour away and needing help with lifts this got too much.
    over a period of 3 years roughly id become so depressed and suicidal in this time. i have MS so was hard anyway but i didnt get the fellowship i needed and the love and support i craved from the branch in devon.
    all that aside i tried to stay a member but i knew deep down that the jesus they worship is not the same as the Jesus in the bible.
    things didnt tie up and God is not a God of only the select few knowing what he wants with a church. i found after a time the terachings to be sexest and for people to say you believe the church and joseph smith are true without even being encouraged to use your brain and intellect this is just wrong.
    i feel sad to lose those people i thought of as friends i pray for the branch and just hope what happened tome in it never happens to anyone again.
    thankyou so much for sharing what you have. please take care. c x

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  13. What Stephen poses isn’t just a challenge for Mormonism, its a challenge for Christianity and religions as a whole. Todays world is increasingly secular, and historical information is now very much available online. As a result people are coming across information and are sometimes surprised by what they find. Some of it may be factual, some might be presented in a manner that leads to certain conclusions but the full weight of evidence might not support that view. Science is increasingly being used to undermine faith in some instances overstepping the merit of the arguments.

    In this instance, Stephens concerns about evolution would be a problem to all faiths. Most Christian denominations do not accept evolution and openly challenge the body of knowledge that has been accumulated that appears to support this theory. However, they are usually unable to oppose the theory in a reasoned manner.

    In terms of LDS history, it has as many problems as most religions Islam, Christianity etc, all have foundational accounts, yet upon investigation they normally turn out to be a lot more complicated than the polished version followers are initially told.

    For example, Paul’s conversion, of the two accounts there is a clear conflict in what happened. Further, there is no external corroboration of this event, it is one mans claim. Subjected to the same tests placed against Joseph Smith the account would be judge equally doubtful. The only disadvantage Smith has is more historical information is available on him that on the other early Christians. On Christ himself there is very little evidence at all other than the NT and a few lines in Josephus that he actually existed, and even if he did, nothing in the bible or outside it provides any evidence that what he said is what he actually said, or that it is true. Jewish history is stock full of messiahs that died gruesome deaths. Many of the scriptures drawn from the old testament used as evidence of Jesus as the messiah don’t actually relate to Jesus at all, Isaiah with the virgin shall conceive being one that comes to mind.

    The Bible itself would fall foul of such challenges – For instance, how does an all knowing and all powerful God decide to build a garden of eden that he wants to remain perfect, and then create two being and put them in their, and tells them to look after his garden and then not know about the serpent and their eating the forbidden fruit? This creates an incredible challenge: If God is Omnipotent and Omniscient then he would know in advance of building the garden and the people exactly what the outcome was going to be. Being Omnipotent I have to ask is he therefore capable of building a garden and two people who do not fall? Or perhaps of keeping the serpent out? Either way, the result is God’s plan seems to go awry – in effect a perfect all powerful, all knowing God fails to achieve what he wants as an outcome and then is forced down this route of a convoluted plan to save humanity from sin. Since he is the only judge, why does he need any sacrifice to offer forgiveness? What laws bind God, since creator is greater than created and God must pre-exist his own laws, for if he were bound by then he would cease to be Omnipotent as the laws would be omnipotent. A similar version of this is argued by Plato in Euthyphro where Socrates asks did Good pre-exist God or did God invent God? Oddly, Mormonism addresses this issue where broader Christianity doesn’t.

    My point here isn’t to bash its to place the comments by the ex-Mormon bishop in context. Some posts on here appear to argue that because the LDS church lost its case in the battle for Stephen, that somehow the rest of Christianity has won – but that isn’t the case, Stephen is now a secular humanist – he no longer believes in God.

    I think we need to be rational here. The threats posed to the LDS church are the same threats posed to all faiths. Unlike in the case with Stephen, the outcome isn’t that most people become secular humanists seeing to create a better world with a set of values, rather, the outcome is too many people think life has no meaning and simply engage in a hedonist lifestyle, doing what they think suits their self interest regardless of how damaging it is to them or others. So neither Christianity nor society benefits.

    As for this divide between Mormonism and other branches of Christianity, guys get over it. It is a false dichotomy. People are straining at gnats and swallowing camels. People say that Mormons don’t accept Christ, or that they worship another God. Really? There is no definitive guide that explains what God is. Over the centuries various scholars have had a pop at it but all we end up with is opinion, the bible does no consistently nor clearly declare anything on the matter. From the new and Old testament you can evidence God does and does not have a body, is present everywhere yet lives in a fixed place in a body, died, but remained alive the whole time, spoke to himself, prayed to himself, changes the old testament rules to the new but doesn’t change them simply fulfils them after which worship and practice are entirely different resulting in Christianity rather than Judaism but hey, nothing has changed right?

    The simply fact is, Mormons believe in a being called God. Knowing whether he has brown hair, green hair, feet, no hair, is a gas, timeless, a holograph doesn’t seem to be stated as a prerequisite for salvation – and since God doesn’t declare it clearly, I don’t think he really cares. Oh, you conceived of me incorrectly I have six fingers not five – eternity in hell for you!

    As for the whole Jesus and saved by Grace or Works nonsense. It’s both since one without the other is meaningless. Grace is the gift from God, but to accept it you don’t just recognise Jesus as the saviour (Even Satan knows that as did the legion cast into the pigs and they’re not saved). The instruction is exhibit faith through following. If we believe and have faith we live in accordance with his teaching and accept his power to save us. However if I declare Jesus is lord then walk our and begin mugging and killing people am I saved? Why not – because my works are no consistent with the teachings of Christ, no matter how much I believe he can save me. Therefore works and living in accordance with Christ is a pre-requisite for salvation. The challenge seems to be the view that you don’t need Christ, that through works alone you can be perfect but I don’t know any religion that says that, the Mormons certainly don’t neither do the Jehovah’s Witnesses.

    Whilst the fragments of Christianity attack and undermine each others doctrines and people like Stephen lose their faith in God (however he conceived of him it was sincere and a caring God would see that) Satan laughs. You’re doing his work for him.

    If you think your way is better I think the rule should be to show what is better about your faith not what is wrong or worse about theirs. What yours adds not what you need to take away from theirs to make yours an acceptable fallback position.

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    1. Hi there thanks a lot for the comment.

      This is an understandable set of criticisms to come from a more secular perspective. I sometimes wonder how all this must look from outside the LDS and Christian world as it were. Have you ever been in either of those camps? Or are you still?

      Anyway needless to say I do not see these things the way you do at all, hence the fact that this site carries on. I am not going to go through all of your comments for the sake of time and its likely you will have had these discussions before, however there were a couple of things you said that got my attention. I will put those in italics and comment.

      As for the whole Jesus and saved by Grace or Works nonsense. It’s both since one without the other is meaningless. Grace is the gift from God, but to accept it you don’t just recognise Jesus as the saviour (Even Satan knows that as did the legion cast into the pigs and they’re not saved).

      This I would massively challenge. What you tend to find is that the groups that claim that you must carry out some kind of works before you are “saved” in the sight of God is that they say you must do it in our church following our rules. There tends to be a constant dissatisfaction amongst the membership of their own performance only fuled by the leadership. This type of thing is a large reason why I do what I do. As if you believe that you are saved totally by grace and that works then follow there is then no standard to meet and therefore no heavy shepherding that can follow from a church leadership of any kind. It may seem like simple wording but the difference is massive.

      Also you said

      Whilst the fragments of Christianity attack and undermine each others doctrines and people like Stephen lose their faith in God (however he conceived of him it was sincere and a caring God would see that) Satan laughs. You’re doing his work for him.

      Ah so you do believe in Satan, not as secular as I thought I guess.

      Ok you finished with

      If you think your way is better I think the rule should be to show what is better about your faith not what is wrong or worse about theirs. What yours adds not what you need to take away from theirs to make yours an acceptable fallback position.

      Ok so this is a common one, stop saying whats wrong with the LDS Church and just say what is right about yours. The problem here is when speaking with LDS members they have the worldview that all other churches are in this state of apostasy, or lacking in the fulness of truth and authority, so a lot of what I share about my faith will be seen through this filter. Therefore its necessary at times to challenge that worldview in order to show that what I have is not merely a watered down version of Christianity but actually authentic Christianity. However if you look through my articles you will find most also have a lot of Christian theology in there as well. This website has much more to say than simply the Mormons have it wrong.

      While I respect Steve Bloor a lot for who he is and all that he has been through, needless to say his letter here does not reflect my viewpoint. Please fee free to have a look over the many articles on this blog that do and leave a comment and I would be happy to dialogue with you on any of them.

      If you feel I have missed anything here you specfically wanted a response too, let me know I have not responded to them all simply as there was a lot of points and I do not have the time right now to give a very long response.

      thanks a lot for your comment and I hope to hear more from you.

      Bobby

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