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March 2004
(Names and Contact Info Removed)

March 1, 2004

Hello, I just wanted to contact you and thank you for the work you are doing. I am a new Christian having left the LDS faith last July. I am in the process of having my name removed from their records. My entire family has followed me (and in some cases lead me) to do this and we are much happier now. My brother... has had contact with your organization in the past and recommended it to me. ... Thanks again.

March 1, 2004

Subject: Re: Fw: I need help please!

my daughter ........ thinks she is in love with a mormon boy who is training to become a high priest and she thinks all mormons churchs are not part of a cult so do you know of any lds churchs that arent part of the cults?

[Sandra's Note: Look at the Online Resources section of our web page. For some insights on 'cults' see What is a Cult?

A young man in Mormonism would not be getting ready to be a 'high priest.' High Priests are older men. If he is about 16 he would be getting ready to be made a 'priest' (which just means he has some specific duties at the local congregation—like helping with baptisms and sacrament).

A teenager would not necessarily understand a lot of LDS teachings. The full teachings of Mormonism, such as becoming a god, are taught when they go on a mission (usually at 19) and attend the temple for their 'endowment.' Even then, many young men don't really understand the deeper doctrines of Mormonism.

A helpful, side by side comparison of believes is in the book Witness to Mormons.

Another good book is The Mormon Missionaries: An Inside Look at Their Real Message and Methods.]

March 2, 2004

Subject: thank you for all of your sacrifices

I wanted to say thank you from me and my family here in Oklahoma. In case this is posted, I'll address those who are afraid, angry, doubting or even the apologists still in the lds organization also.

It's a strange journey we're on in this life, we all have had questions that need answers . I know the emotions involved, mine has went 180 degrees . This time last year i was in elders quorum pres., totally active w/ 4little girls etc., so yes i scoffed at utlm and all the other "antis", was distrustful of any info not from church authority and even argued for 2 months w/ my wife about her testimony.

Finally after my very loving bishop, members, church sources and the apologists (god bless em') actually creating more questions, and definitely no answers, i realized i had no choice but to see what the truth actually is. It broke my heart when i knew it (the first vision, bom) was not true, trying to hold back the tears while driving one evening. Exhaustively i've researched reading a story here or there tracking down diaries, journals, documents, sermons etc. w/ one thing in mind ....no more lies, half truths, whitewashing of an event to make it more palatable or deception.

It is something all of us must be accountable for in this life is our testimony of all truth that resides within us and the truth we teach our kids, because they trust us and we love our savior JESUS CHRIST, so, you cannot truly say you have a testimony of anything if your praying about a story you've been bottle fed all your life (most of which is whitewashed,& fabricated revisionist fairy tales) It is ironic that all the warnings "the church" gives you about others could be applied to them.

I will give my testimony that once you step outside the fog of Mormon doctrine, it is wonderful to know the true Jesus who doesn't require you to be perfect, for we can't. I will end by listing those items that i know have occurred and are fact from my research; early lds drank and used tobacco, B.Y. presided like a mafia don over the dedicated lds people, J.S. used various sources to create the b.o.m.(the original 1830 copy lists him as author) J.S. and his family were superstitious con men paid to use their seer stone in a hat to find buried treasure(none was ever found,...how many times are you gonna pay some goof ball to make you dig, he gets paid, but you end up w/nada!) J.S. tried to join Emma's methodist church in 1828 (would you do that if god told you not to?) J.S. first said an angel named "nephi" came to him (WHAT! ,but moroni's not offended because Joseph even forgot to mention JESUS OR GOD THE FATHER until 10yrs after he supposedly saw them), J.S. is guilty of the following (see how many break the 10 commandments) counterfeiting money, circumventing Ohio state laws to run an illegal bank, fraud, lying (one example is slandering good peoples names to get out of trouble(WILLIAM LAW) well, ole William shoulda got in on the carnal free for all available to all Joe's frat boys, too bad lds people today still think he is the adulterer...hmmm isn't that the pot calling the kettle black) J.S. stole the endowment ceremony from his masonic club (i,m sure glad all the masons will know the proper handshake to get into heaven..oh or are the handshakes only to let people who are other masons know you are one too...whew i could go on for hours or days, so ask yourself when you hear all of the exuses given why EVERYBODY IN THE WHOLE WORLD is wrong and your right, doesn't it begin to sound like those folks who still think o.j. simpson didn't do it. I won't say a person who believes JESUS is their savior isn't a CHRISTIAN, but i do know the lds organization doesn't teach anything close to the what CHRIST taught, so I'll place my faith solely MY SAVIOR and he'll sort it out later, i just hope for your sake your as correct as you think you are. peace be with you and GOD BLESS.

March 2, 2004

Subject: Secret name documentation?

Is there any LDS publication that records the business of the husband calling his wife from the grave at the resurrection?

[Sandra's Note: There are two LDS quotes in our online article: How the LDS Husband Hopes to Resurrect His Wife According to the LDS Temple Ceremony.]

March 2, 2004

Subject: just wanted you to know.

i was in the LDS church for 27 years - in the last 10 years i have been reading about the lds church from outside the church and i had to do this in underground ( you know what i mean. anyways i'm going to be leaving the LDS church as soon as i can get my letter ready - i am so mad about all the lies and falsehood they call truth. the bible is the only source for me now. God bless you in all you are doing. my prayers are with you.

take it to them!!!

ps love your website

March 2, 2004

Subject: Old Book

Dear Tanners,

First of all I would like to thank you for your wonderful ministry. As a former Mormon it is very comforting and reassuring to know you are there. We really appreciate your web-site and newsletters. My husband met you once years ago in Salt Lake regarding an old book on Mormon Doctrine.

We recently purchased a book on e-bay called The women of Mormonism, The Story of Polygamy as told by the Victims Themselves. It was edited by Jennie Anderson Froiseth & published in 1886. It is an excellent book - I wondered if you had heard of it and/or read it. If you haven't, I would be happy to mail it to you & send postage for you to return it. The book is an incredible account of the pain & suffering endured by Mormon women. My great-grandmother was the third wife of a polygamist, which made the story really hit home.



[Sandra's Note: Yes, it's an interesting book. Did you know that it was online? The Women of Mormonism: or The Story of Polygamy As Told by the Victims Themselves.]

March 2, 2004

So should I let the missionaries into my house?

[Sandra's Note: No, I don't recommend that people meet with the LDS missionaries unless they have studied the Bible, know Christian doctrine and have studied Mormonism to know the difference.

Read Terminology Differences and some of the other articles under Online Resources: LDS Theology. Christians believe in only one God who has always been God. The Mormons believe there are many gods and that the god we pray to was once a mortal on some other world, died, went to heaven and had to earn the right to become a god over our world. (Read Joseph Smith's King Follet Sermon and Joseph Smith's Sermon On Plurality of Gods.)

Let me give you an example of how I view the problem. When a person goes to buy a car there is the hope/expectation that the used car salesman will disclose any problems with the car and that all of the details/costs of the financing will be fully explained before one signs the contract. There are laws covering 'truth in lending' because many past used car salespeople were not honest. It is important for the buyer to do his/her homework first, to know what the average price is of the type of car one wants, what are reasonable financing charges, etc. One might even want to get a second opinion from a mechanic on the condition of the car.

People often spend more time and energy investigating a car purchase than they spend on choosing their religion. Yet the religious decision has an eternal impact on one's life. And there have certainly been more false religious leaders than used car salespeople.

The missionaries, who are very sincere, present a canned, selected view of LDS beliefs, prepared by the missionary department. These lessons do not give enough information for a person to make a knowledgeable choice. The missionaries do not show a potential convert their other books of scripture (the Doctrine and Covenants and Pearl of Great Price) or give them a clear explanation of their core beliefs. In fact, many of the missionaries have never read ALL of their own scriptures. Most of them have probably never read D&C:132, Joseph Smith's revelation on marriage and polygamy, or his sermons on the nature of God.

Also, what are the facts/reasons to believe/not believe LDS scriptures? Read a book like Joseph Smith and the Origins of The Book of Mormon or By His Own Hand Upon Papyrus: A New Look at the Joseph Smith Papyri

Basic Christianity is very different from the LDS beliefs. The choice should include a lot of study besides prayer. I studied and prayed and God showed me that Mormonism was false and I should go back to the Bible. If you are truly interested in seeing the differences in beliefs, read Understanding Mormonism: Mormonism and Christianity Compared.

What are the evidences to support or challenge Joseph Smith? Why should a person believe him? Truth will stand up to investigation.]

March 3, 2004

As a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for 23 years, I have neither heard nor experienced any abuse or wrong doing. Any abuse going on that is "linked" to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is false.

[Sandra's Note: Simply because you have not experience abuse is no guarantee that other members have not experienced it. Most Catholics have not been abused by their priest but that is not evidence that no one has been abused. Read #97 Messenger: Abuse — Special Report.]

March 3, 2004

Subject: DNA and the Book of Mormon video

Just wanted to comment on the above video. WOW, fantastic, earth shaking etc.!!!!! When their own authorities and heavy weights admit that " We have a problem ....", it is amazing. I have watched the video a few times and lent it out to friends who wanted to know how to deal with mormons. I wanted to get feed back from you as to how it has impacted the mormon world and what kind of song and dance they are attempting over this one.

Appreciate your ministry and keep up the good work!

[Steve's Note: The DNA vs. The Book of Mormon video is having quite the impact for those who are exposed to it. The LDS Church is trying to maintain the 'all is well' front. Several Mormon apologists are trying to avoid the obvious implications by suggesting that either God changed the Native American DNA or that the right people have not yet been tested.]

March 3, 2004

Subject: Not sure . . .

Hello, ...I am writing to you because I am concerned for my son, ... who is 20 years old and has recently left home - moved ..... to "find his own way." He was raised in a Christian Church, but I was not a faithful member for several years and his faith is weak, because mine was weak.

As of Sunday, his father ..... was baptized and confirmed into the Mormon Church (his wife is Mormon). I am afraid of him trying to push this "new found religion" on my son and, beyond prayer, I have no idea what I can do for him. I was hoping that you might be able to give me some advice. I don't know where to begin, or if I should do anything at this point.

Thank you for your time,

In Him.

[Steve's Note: May I encourage you to take the time now to share with your son about your faith and why it is important to you. By admitting your own failures to him may earn you the right to compare what you believe against what his father now believes. Perhaps you could agree to discuss matters of faith freely and to find reasons for what is able to be believed and what is not.

We have several facts sheets online that I feel may be helpful to you—

We will be praying for you and your family.]

March 4, 2004

Subject: Help with a missionary visit--

Tonight two missionaries talked to me. Part of the discussion was directed toward your paper Terminology differences between LDS and the Bible. They said that all the information I get over the Internet is NOT TRUE.

I said that I got information over the Internet from LDS church in Salt Lake, and received through the mail, telling me the two versions of the FIRST VISION.

Then they looked at the terminology paper and said that the "Bible" part of your paper might not be true, but the terms that I pointed out were true and that is what the LDS believes in. The ones we went over were: Godhead, Virgin Birth, True Church, Authority-Priesthood, Baptism, Heaven.

The missionaries also told me the Apostles Creed was not true, and that all authority for anything was lost after the Apostles died. They told me my baptism and my children's baptism are NOT authorized and therefore no good. ...

They also said that they believe in the Bible. Can you enlighten me, and explain to me how they can say what they believe in and still believe in what the Bible says?

You sent me "Solving the Mystery of the Joseph Smith Papyri" and can you tell me any updated news about it? Like any people recently that have stated again what the Papyri says. I would like to know the qualifications of those who translated the papyri into it's true meaning and the people from FARMS if possible.

...I am sure I can discuss many other subjects that the Mormons try to believe in. They say that all your literature you have is anti-Mormon and I told them that your stuff is just as true as you say the Book Of Mormon is true, so just who has an open mind here. They wanted to know what my purpose or what I wanted to get from these meetings and I told them that I don't want my children to go to a church that is false and teachings that are built on deception, in which I believe the Mormons do well.


[Steve's Note: Unfortunately, much of what the average missionary knows is only what the LDS church gives to them during their time in the Missionary Training Center. The fact that they are openly admitting that they are not another Christian church is a good thing. It clearly lets you see that their gospel is very different from what is presented in the Bible. They use the Bible only when it seems to teach something which agrees with their views.

For current info on the Joseph Smith papyri see Robert Ritner's article: "THE BREATHING PERMIT OF HÔR" AMONG THE JOSEPH SMITH PAPYRI (.pdf).]

March 4, 2004

Subject: You're stronger than I thought

Dear Tanners,

Always heard about you, never read anything you have done. Came to know the Lord in 1997 and have now started a movement to work from within the ranks of the LDS Church (www.bornagainmormon.com) to help change doctrine. I'm not sure we will have any real lasting effect on the institution but our presence at least gets some members to examine their relationship with the Lord Jesus. Thanks for your efforts and willingness to accept the brunt of the all to common LDS attack. I have seen my share (though minimally) since I started Bornagainmormon.com and know how disconcerting it can be at times. You guys, as far as I'm concerned, are the real pioneers.

In Jesus,

March 5, 2004

I am surrounded by Mormon's and I'm okay with that but no one will give me a truthful answer to this one question. Why are so many of these families larger than average? Does this add to your votes in the Celestial kingdom or what?

[Steve's Note: This has more to do with their teaching that God and his wife had a certain number of spirit-children born to them in our prior existence in heaven, some of whom earned the right to be born to a good LDS family on earth. If Mormons limit their number of kids it might force a deserving spirit to accept a 'lesser' qualified family (non-LDS) in order to have his/her turn on earth. (One needs to come to earth to get a mortal body to progress to godhood.) But it also comes from their belief that all their 'worthy' family members will be with them in the hereafter, and the bigger the exalted family, the more powerful god a man becomes (since he oversees a larger number of people, sort of a heavenly Amway idea—multilevel corporation structure). See Mormons Hope to Become Gods of Their Own Worlds.]

March 5, 2004

the book of mormon. i see in the bible god did promise us a record that would be sealed. isaiah 29:8:14 (18) god promises to do a marvelous work. isaiah 29:14 hab 1:5 acts 13:40:41

daniel 12:4 also you can see that daniel the prophet was made aware that the sealed record. the book. it would bring forth knowlege. it says many would run to and fro at the time of the end. daniel 12:8:10 verse 10 only the wise would understand. god did also tell us he would some day send a famine in the land of hearing the word of god. amos 8:11:12 notice it says here at amos 8:12 they will run to and fro to seek the word of the lord. and shall not find it. at daniel 12:4"...and seal the book, even to the time of the end. (latter days) many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.

now i know it seems I am advocating this book. i want to say I am not a member of the church of jesus christ of latter day saints. sandra. do think god would lie to us at these scriptures. in the bible. num 23:19 god cant lie. he does not change. malichi 3:6 the lord at hebrews 31:8 does not change. so what do you think that god means at isaiah.29:8:14 dan12: 12:8:10 he did say he would do a work in our day that people would not believe, habakkuk 1:5 he say it also at isaiah 29:14 regarding this book. i hope my statement will be of some help. god bless.

...from scotland uk. jesus christ amen.

[Sandra's Note: The Bible does not prophesy of the Book of Mormon. The marvelous work was Christ and the introduction of Christianity in the New Testament. Here is an article I wrote on the Isaiah passage.

Familiar Spirits

Mormonism claims that Isaiah 29:1-4 is a prophecy of the coming forth of the Book of Mormon. Isaiah 29: 4 states:

And thou shalt be brought down, and shalt speak out of the ground, and thy speech shall be low out of the dust, and thy voice shall be, as of one that hath a familiar spirit, out of the ground, and thy speech shall whisper out of the dust.

Biblical scholars see this passage as a prophecy of doom against Israel, not a promise of future scripture. Isaiah equates the humiliation of Israel to a ghost whispering from the grave. Mormons believe that the voice out of the dust is referring to the buried Nephite record.

Past LDS president Joseph Fielding Smith wrote:

ISAIAH PROPHESIES OF BOOK OF MORMON. One of the most important predictions regarding the Book of Mormon is that found in the 29th chapter of Isaiah. The prophet here speaks of a people who should be like Ariel, the city where David dwelt. They should have heaviness and sorrow and should be brought down to speak out of the ground, and their speech was to be low out of the dust, and their voice was to be as of one that had a familiar spirit. (Joseph Fielding Smith Jr., Doctrines of Salvation, Vol.3, p.213)

The Bible always condemns familiar spirits. If the Book of Mormon is supposed to be the word of God why would God associate it with demonic forces? The following verses demonstrate God's condemnation of familiar spirits.

  • Lev. 19:31 Regard not...familiar spirits neither seek after wizards
  • Lev. 19:26 neither use enchantment nor observe times
  • Lev. 20:6 familiar spirits, wizards...I will set my face against
  • Lev. 20:27 hath familiar spirit or wizard - put to death
  • Deut. 18:10-12 divination, enchanter, witch, charmer, consulter with familiar spirits, wizard, necromancer - abomination to Lord
  • Isa. 8:19 say - seek familiar spirit or wizard that peep - seek Lord
  • Isa. 19:3 I will destroy counsel thereof and they shall seek idols, charmers, familiar spirits and wizards
  • Isa. 29:1-4 Woe to Ariel - familiar spirits
  • Isa. 44:24-26 Thus saith the Lord, thy redeemer, and he that formed thee from the womb, I am the Lord that maketh all things; that stretcheth forth the heavens alone; that spreadeth abroad the earth by myself; That frustrateth the tokens of the liars, and maketh diviners mad; that turneth wise men backward, and maketh their knowledge foolish; that confirmeth the word of his servant, and performeth the counsel of his messengers;"
  • I Sam. 28:3-25 Saul and witch at Endor - familiar spirit
  • I Chron 10:13-14 Saul died for transgression - asking counsel of familiar spirit and enquired not of the Lord
  • Luke 16:19-31 Lazarus - can't come from the dead
  • Acts 16:16 Paul and Silas - spirit cast out of girl

Also read these chapters for more on this—

March 6, 2004

Subject: The Church

I am doing some research ... and I have stumbled on to something called the Christian Identity Movement. I was wondering if you knew of any movement of the Churches membership maybe being sympathetic to the cause of the Christian Identity? Do you know if the founders of the Church and the starters of the Christian Identity had any contact back east before the Church moved west? I am also interested in any information about the Church and racism.

Thank You,

[Sandra's Note: Here are three sites with some info on the movement—

Joseph Smith was influenced by British Israelism but did not adopt all of its views. There is some on this in All Abraham's Children.

Mormonism teaches that its members are 'true' Israel, but they still believe the Jews are part of Israel. See:

And our new book, Curse of Cain? Racism in the Mormon Church.]

March 7, 2004

... I would like to ask a question please, the question is what language did Abham-Abraham and his father spoke at that time, were it Amharic,Hebrew. And what language did JESUS-YAHSHUA-YESHUA spoke at that time, can you help me on this please. Thankyou, ...

GOD bless you and all.

[Steve's Note: The languages that would have been used by Abraham were ancient Hebrew and Chaldean. Since Abram came from Ur of the Chaldeans he obviously would have used this language. After leaving the land of his father's and going to the land that God would show to him, he would have picked up the knowledge of the language of the area. Hebrew shows strong evidence of a close affinity to the languages surrounding it such as Phoenician, and Cannanite.

There is good evidence that Jesus would have had the ability to use multiple languages. He read from the scriptures which were written in Hebrew; spoke to people he ministered to in Aramaic and was able to carry on conversations with various Romans he came in contact with. This suggests strongly that Jesus had a knowledge of Greek and/or Latin. All of this was not uncommon for the time and the fact that Judea was an occupied land in his time.]

March 7, 2004

I became a Mormon in 1958 but in 1978 I was born again and I no long want my name or the names of my family registered with the Mormons. Can you tell me how t get our names off their records. I don't remember what church had my records. Thank you,

[Sandra's Note: You would need to contact the LDS membership dept., phone 801-240-3500, to find out where to send your letter. See How to Remove Your Name from the LDS Records.]

March 7, 2004

Subject: The God Head Book / Bible Study?

Do you know of a book / Bible study that will identify God being three in one and will define the different titles given to Jesus?

Something that will go from beginning to end, old to new testament and will explain titles like "The Son of God" and how the Title Messiah means God. Something that will point out prophesies that point to Jesus being God. Thank You for directing people to Jesus our creator and only God!

[Steve's Note: The best book that I know that is available for the names and titles given to Jesus and to God is Names of Christ, God and the Holy Spirit set by T. C. Horton. Another good basic book is God: Knowing Him by His Names by Bill Bright. These are available through most Christian bookstores.]

March 7, 2004


Could you please send me your current newletter and your last newletter Oct 2003?

... Also I wanted to know if it is possible to buy a copy of 'History of Utah' by Bancroft. There are several books I want to buy together.

I was a member of the LDS church and ex'd 10 years ago and am now just feeling I can complete my deprograming from their teachings. Thanks for your attention in this matter and keep up the good work.

Best wishes,

[Sandra's Note: Sorry, Bancroft's History of Utah is out of print, but you can read the entire book online in our Online Books section. You might be able to find a copy through a used book store. It was reprinted a couple of times. Try www.benchmarkbooks.com.]

March 8, 2004


... I've been studying Mormonism for a number of years now and I have a passion for reaching Mormons for Christ. I was just wondering if you know of any ministry opportunities or mission opportunities in the Utah area that would be available to participate in for a short-term mission.

... God bless you in your awesome ministry!

In Him,

[Sandra's Note: Contact one of these—Russ East at http://www.upfc.org/ or email Timothy Oliver with Watchman Fellowship.

They are both involved in outreach efforts.]

March 8, 2004

... My husband is a Mormon. He will go with me to my church, .... but he never seems to "hear" what is being said. God has been so great and has used our minister in ways that he cannot imagine himself to get the truth to [him], but when I ask [him] what he thought about things like there are no priests, God is not mortal, etc, he never heard what the preacher said.

I know you must wonder how I married someone who does not believe, but I was fooled and did not research before marriage. [His] answers were/are correct when asked what is required to enter into heaven, Jesus death, burial and resurrection. It was not until I attended his church that the spirit that lives in me started screaming and shouting that these [LDS] things were not honest and there was more. I will never be a part of his church or his beliefs (I am sure I am the longest running person in the "Investigator's class" and will never make it out of there before I am asked to not return because I quote the bible to them, and make them read it and ask them to explain it to me...this is what the bible says...) so I know my days are numbered in being allowed to go to his church. We have been married only since ... 2003.

I just don't see how else to present the truth.

[Sandra's Note: You might buy the book An Insider's View of Mormon Origins—it is written by a retired LDS Institute of Religion director who has come to question the whole thing.

Or get the videos/dvd:

March 8, 2004

Subject: here's one for ya

In 1971,my mom was 17 and she got pregnent. Her family were/are mormons so they shipped her off to Utah to have the child and give up for adoption to a mormon family because that's what my grandparents thought was for the best.

Fast forward to today. In the past few months we've begun searching for the child. (she is my full-blooded sister). So we registered with the state of Utah, and contacted the LDS hospital in Salt Lake City were the birth took place to receive my mothers medical records. Well they tell us that they have no record of her ever being there. To make a long story short they tell me that in "those days" birth mothers were usually given another name when they were admitted into the hostpital. My mom had no idea that such a thing was happening to her at the time, she did not even receive a paper when she released the baby.

So now we have to do an "adoption search". You fill out a request and send $50.00 and they go into a mountain where all adoptions that have ever taken place in the LDS church are stored. Do you know what "mountain" they are referring to?

After they find the file and get all the unidentifying info then you have to meet with someone and they go over it with you. This is one of the hardest things that I've ever had to watch my mom go through, it makes my heart so heavy. Im worried that they wont even find a record of it up in the "mountain". Do you have any suggestions on this matter. It seems like when I talk to people in the LDS social services they are being secretive about things.


Thank you

[Sandra's Note: The Mormons have a large storage facility deep in a granite mountain in the Cottonwood canyons east of Salt Lake City. This is a secured facility where they store all their records. You can read more about this at http://www.ancestry.com/library/view/columns/eastman/5191.asp and http://www.lds.org/newsroom/showpackage/0,15367,3899-1--35-2-163,00.html.

As for suggestions on how to proceed, sounds like you have already tried the things I would suggest. Sorry don't know where to refer you for more help.]

March 9, 2004

hi I appreciate your site I just got the surge of I'm really upset I was baptised before I new where my foot was I am so angry about even being on the list, I'm a tattoo artist and a practicing pagan and it annoys me that I have to go through this rigamoral. but I don't care at this point I want to dissavow any voluntary associaction with this molarky. Who the h-- can I call and tell them to take my name off before I sick my gods and my science on them.

Thanks sorry for the grammatical errors

[Sandra's Note: You would need to send your letter to your bishop, or contact the LDS membership dept., phone 801-240-3500, to find out where to send your letter. To write your letter see How to Remove Your Name from the LDS Records.]

March 9, 2004

I want to thank you for your ministry to all of us. I was baptized into the Mormon church when I was 11. Additionally, I come from a long line of Mormons....I think my ancestors probably built Logan and part of their residence is now part of the college. At any rate, I followed the Lord's promptings to take a break from the church. That was at about age 16, (1986). I received Jesus as my personal saviour in 1996. I am so thankful for ministries such as yours. As I read more and more and share more and more with my now Christian family and extended family, I am figuring out where all that wierd doctrine came from and we are all in awe at how much was just "in there" from being from such a long line of mormons. As I think many other former mormons would agree....the missionaries came like an "angel of light." Very deceptive. Scary, in fact. However, through it all, I must say that I am thankful that God entrusted the experience to me. I am able to share with others my experience and I have also walked away much stronger and much less ready to listen to the advice of men without question. The Lord has indeed blessed me with more discernment and a much stronger reliance on His Word. I thank you for your dedication to these people. I love them. I know so many who seem to be the nicest people in the world. Some are family. It truly breaks my heart that through all their works and all their aspirings that it will come to naught for eternities sake. I will make a concerted effort to pray for your ministry on a regular basis as well as my mormon friends and family.

Your sister in Christ,

March 9, 2004

I stumbled across your website the other day and I just wanted to let you know what a waste of time it is. As Christians your ministry should be focused on teaching about Christ. There are too many other influences in the world that are evil and destructive, we as Christians should try to counter that, rather than being distracted by our differences with fellow Christians.

I am not a Latter Day Saint, but I have a great respect for their convictions and the great influence for good they have in the world. Explain to me why you think it is your responsibility to warn the world about the "mormons"? Did God himself ask you to? I don't think He did. If you wish to call yourself "Christians" you ought to teach Christian principles, like the mormons, rather than teaching how wrong the mormons are. Christ didn't spend His ministry engaged in teaching how wrong everyone else was. Why? because He was "about his Father's business." You would do well to at least try and emulate the Lord if you wish to be called his servants.

Best wishes.

March 10, 2004

I felt the need to tell you both how amazing your website is.

I was once a mormon, I grew up in Utah and new nothing else but mormonism. I eventually married in the SLC Temple and thankfully got divorced. I moved to ....... where I met my current husband who tried to show me the truth. Finally, after years of research and pray I found the one true God and our Saviour Jesus Christ. My children and I were baptized Christian almost a year ago and I am now trying to show my parents and family the truth. ... Thank you and Praise God for using you to show the truth. The world needs more people like you!!

With the Love of Christ,

March 11, 2004

i dont know what is wrong with you people, you spend all your time trying to find bad in everyone elses faith. joseph smith had many prophecy's about decievers in the last days. he is a true prophet and one day you will awake and see. dont waste our time and yours

March 11, 2004

... I can't tell you what an inspiration you and your husband and those who seek to witness to JW's and Mormons have been to us! I am currently in Seminary (sadly only part-time, but I AM 35, a father of two and obviously work full time).

Sadly, the Mormon missionaries stopped coming to our house (we kept the "ball in the air" for 8 months - Praise God!). A new missionary replaced an old one and I think I asked about the Adam-God and countless false prophecies a little too soon. They stood us up the following week and the week after they called the night before to tell us they would not be returning due to the fact that they didn't think we were "serious". I pointed out that in 8 months I was really the only one answering questions - all the questions I asked they never followed up on.


In His Name,

March 11, 2004

Subject: Appreciation

Dear Servants of God,

Jerald and Sandra Tanner,

Holy greetings in Jesus' name. I wish to convey my heartfelt appreciation for your continued research through which you unfold the living truth of the WORD OF GOD-taking believers into the arena where their persistent foes are met in as far as mormonism deception is concerned. May God bless you bountifully.

Your website is a real blessing to many who visit and whenever I visit it, I'm enriched spiritually. I'm proud of your stand in Christ and for having faith in the Word of God and not in the words of man, regardless of the many verbal abuse from those who hate you for taking your stand for the truth(3John 4).

I admire and love you two and your efforts to reach those who are seeking the truth of the Gospel and in helping to bring those who are seeking God out of spiritual darkness and into the love and light of Christ. . . .

In His service,

March 11, 2004

Subject: God Bless You!

Dear Sandra,

... I was a member of the LDS church for over 20 years, temple endowed, the works. To make a very long story short God revealed himself to me and I am now a born again Christian attending the ... Foursquare church in .... Washington.

A class became available a few weeks ago entitled "Mormon 101, Witnessing to Mormons with Love". I e-mailed the teacher and she called and we met and have since become good friends. I have embraced all of this with a passion and have done tons of studying.

My questions to you is how do I come about getting a copy of the Journal of Discourses. We tried at the LDS bookstore here in town but they said they don't carry them anymore. I checked on the internet and I cannot find any available any more. What's the deal? Why don't the mormons make them available.

I thought for sure I could buy them on CD to study and look things up.

If you have any ideas please let me know.

The Lord is really pleased with all your hard work and efforts and I know I sure am grateful. The time and money you have put in to all of your research is amazing and exhausting to think about!

You are loved and appreciated!

God Bless You!

[Sandra's Note: The 26 vol. set of Journal of Discourses is out of print. The set is in a number of college libraries, like the University of Utah, BYU, etc. A used set (photo reprint—not originals) would cost over $400-600. And there aren't too many sets that even come up on the used book market.

If you want to contact a used book store try one of these:

The LDS Church puts out a CD-ROM called GospeLink 2001 that contains the entire Journal of Discourses, plus dozens of other LDS titles. GospeLink can be purchased at most LDS book stores.

See http://deseretbook.com/store/product?product_id=100010644

Any printouts from GospeLink would be valid to a Mormon as their own church puts out the program.

The Journal of Discourses set is also on the New Mormon Studies CD-ROM. It isn't affiliated with the LDS church, but is a good source for research and contains many important and out-of-print works.

Personally, I use both of these CD-ROM's everyday for research.]

March 11, 2004

Subject: Milk before Meat

You are such an amazing resource.

I am corresponding with a friend of my daughter who is serving a mission ...

When I asked him about the LDS teaching on the (non)virgin birth he avoided the question (I don't think he had heard of it before) by trying to convince me that I wasn't able to understand these difficult teachings because I'm not already a believer. Apprently only those who already accept the Church and BOM and Joseph Smith as true have the brain power to reconcile two contradictory teachings.

What response can you suggest to the "milk before meat" nonsense?

Thanks and may God bless your ministry.

[Sandra's Note: "Milk before meat" does not resolve contradictory or outlandish statements. Current Mormon leaders and manuals seem to deliberately obscure the more heretical doctrines of their prophets. If you haven't already purchased our set of photos on the Godhead and virgin birth, you should get one. It might help in your correspondence. See Godhead and Virgin Birth Photocopies.]

March 12, 2004

Subject: How do I respond to to two questions from mormons?

... I'm wanting to know as to how we as Christians should respond to mormons when they say "How do you know what denomination of the Christian faith is correct? there are many different teachings in the Christian church, how do you know which one is TRUTH and which ONES are error?" They always like to emphasize on that particular question because they feel they are well organized and in order because all of their members in their church agree on everything they say, unlike the Christian faith as they like to hammer away at for having many differences.

One more question before I conclude this e-mail, how do we respond to mormons when they say "The Bible has been translated SO MANY times that there are MANY ERRORS in it, and the book of mormon contains the answers in which to clear up what the bible cannot answer because of its many errors from being translated SO MANY times." So, I find that mormons like to also emphasize that the bible is NOT trustworthy and contains errors of which the book of mormon clears up. What is a good way to respond to these two questions as I just mentioned above? Thanks for taking the time to review my questions.

P.S. God bless you richly in Jesus' name

[Steve's Note: The important thing to recognize when dealing with the issue of different denominations is not what may separate us but rather what it is that we all hold in common. When it comes to the essentials of the Christian faith there is far more agreement than is usually considered. For example, all Christian churches believe in only one God who has been God for all eternity and will be for all eternity. Christians also believe in the Bible as the only inspired scripture from God to all mankind. What Mormons need to see is that what the LDS Church teaches is neither Christian nor compatible with Christianity. Mormons need to be shown that they should be looking for a church that unashamedly trusts in the Bible, the one God of the Bible and salvation through the finished work of Christ alone for their salvation.

As for your question relating to the trustworthiness of the Bible, history and the mountain of manuscript evidence makes the Bible the most reliable ancient book in existence. For more information on this, you may be interested in reading the following books:

You may be interested to learn that Brigham Young taught preached that "The Bible is good enough as it is, to point out the way we should walk, and to teach us how to come to the Lord of whom we can receive for ourselves." (Journal of Discourses, Vol. 3, p. 116). The question also needs to be put to Mormons as to what specific doctrines are in fact "cleared up" by the Book of Mormon. Furthermore, why is it that the Book of Mormon is missing so many of the current distinct teachings of the LDS Church if it truly contains the fulness of the Gospel as claimed in Doctrine and Covenants 20:9?]

[Sandra's Note: In relation to the Bible, you might want to read chapter 12 of our book The Changing World of Mormonism.

On your other issue, the LDS imply Christianity is flawed due to there being so many different denominations, and they usually believe that Mormonism presents a united front. However, there have been over one hundred different groups claiming their authority from Joseph Smith—and they have VERY divergent beliefs. See the book, Divergent Paths of the Restoration. All of these groups believe the Book of Mormon and at least Smith's earliest revelations. The Church of Christ, Temple Lot Church has a prophet and twelve apostles, uses the 1833 Book of Commandments and the first edition of the Book of Mormon, but none of Smith's later revelations, and believe in only one God. The Reorganized LDS Church (now the Community of Christ) has a prophet and twelve apostles, bases their edition of the Doctrine and Covenants on the 1835 revisions, have changes in the Book of Mormon that differ from the LDS Church, use Joseph Smith's Inspired Revision of the Bible, reject the Book of Abraham, temple marriage, polygamy, plural gods, etc. There are a number of polygamist groups today that claim to be the true LDS Church, and believe in having a prophet and twelve apostles. Obviously Joseph Smith's 'restoration' did not eliminate the problem of competing truth claims, problems of what should be included in the 'canon' or splinter groups.]

March 13, 2004

your quotes are intended to mislead those who you know don't take the time to look fhem up or who you know do not have access to LDS materials. your quotes are copy pasted and hacked from one page to another and you know they are. only you know why you do it. to make a living, but why else? truly, i pity your fate. you are true enemies to the kingdom of God and you know you are.

March 14, 2004

Dear Tanners and company—

Thank you so much for the clearly presented materials addressing my specific concerns, for the listings of your other resources as well and for expending yourself in goods and mailing costs in my behalf.


March 14, 2004

Subject: Lehi in the Wilderness*, 81 New documented evidences that the Book of Mormon is a true history

Well, In perusing the Mormon pages, your names always come up as the "anti-mormon" of the year. Congratulations, it appears to be a four or five-way tie for first place.

I am writing today because I need some information on who might know, or who might have ... the best and latest information on the 81 evidences and answers in refuting the 81 evidences ... And, if you cannot help with the 81 evidences, perhaps you could help with a rebuttal on Brant Gardner concerning the archaeological supports for the book of mormon in mesoamerica? ...

I don't have a PhD in mesoamerican anthropology... so I really could use some help. ...

[Sandra's Note: To read what other scholars have written regarding the Book of Mormon that counter the arguments of FAIR and Gardner, read—

Probably the first things you should read are: the chapter in New Approaches to the Book of Mormon by Deanne Matheny and Quest for the Gold Plates (some of this material is also in the appendix of The Creation of the Book of Mormon).]

March 14, 2004

Subject: "Under the Banner of Heaven"---???

I recently read the book---which opened my eyes to the STRANGE, ODD, CRAZY, LYING --foundation of the LDS church



I would like to know how you guys felt about the book

[Sandra's Note: It just shows that if you spend enough on PR, rewrite all your books, put your members on a guilt trip if they question you, you can build another 'true' church. I liked Under the Banner of Heaven.]

March 15, 2004

Great Religious Truths ...

1. Muslims do not recognize Judaism as a religion.

2. Jews do not recognize Jesus as the Messiah.

3. Protestants do not recognize the Pope as the leader of the Christian faith.

4. Mormons do not recognize each other at Starbucks.

March 15, 2004

... I was re reading D&C 132 about polygamy. Am I missing something or does it specifically say that for a man to take another wife after his first that the new wife must be a virgin. It seems to me that many men practicing polygamy were taking women who had previously been married as additional wives. Please let me know if I am right or wrong in what I have read.


[Sandra's Note: Yes, this is a problem for the specific wording of the revelation. Doctrine and Covenants 132, verses 61 and 62 state:

And again, as pertaining to the law of the priesthood—if any man espouse a virgin, and desire to espouse 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.

And 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.

Interestingly, Joseph Smith secretly married a number of women with living husbands. According to LDS author Todd Compton, out of Smith's first dozen plural wives only two were single women. The others continued to live with their legal husbands even after marrying Smith. In some cases, the husband knowingly agreed to this arrangement. (See In Sacred Loneliness: The Plural Wives of Joseph Smith, p.4)]

March 17, 2004

Subject: Ignorance is Bliss?


I have to commend you on your website. It's authoritative, compressive and well designed.

I was born and raised in Utah, but did not fit the mold. I looked for reasons not to believe and found all that I needed from your website. I was tired of the mean gossip and horrible rumors spread by various neighbors in my cul-de-sac. I did not fit the Mormon mold because I was a single father. ...

I now know that Joseph Smith was a fraud and the god he created ... does not exist! I'm now left to wonder, as a forty-five year old, if ignorance is bliss? What is better, to find hope in the fraud or lost hope in the truth? I believe in no god and that nature is the creator, nothing more nor less.

Best Regards,

March 18, 2004

Subject: your web site

I find it very interesting that the entire web site is aimed at disclaiming the Mormon church. your explanation of the names in the book of mormon I find interesting yet wrong.

I know and understand that you are entitled to your opinion, but i feel as though you have missed the mark. Is it not possible to be the word of god, there are no teachings in the book of mormon that contrdict anything the Savior said. It is the word of god and there is no one on this earth that can convince me otherwise. I know for my self that it is true, search it out in your mind, then ask the Lord. it is as simple as that. thank you for the time you took to read my e-mail.

March 19, 2004

Subject: smithsonian


I've read that the [Smithsonian Inst.] statement regarding the BoM is now just a short sentence.

Is there evidence that has caused them to change or do they still stand by their information even though they do not send it to inquirers?

I have a copy of what they used to send, I was just curious as to why they've changed.


God speed

[Sandra's Note: I am sure they have not changed their minds. I assume they are just trying to be more politically correct. It isn't popular to say anything that looks like you are attacking someone's religion. I assume the LDS Church put pressure on them to be more neutral.]

March 19, 2004

Subject: Aloha from Hawaii


. . . I currently attend Pacific Rim Bible College to answer the calling God put on my life to reach out to Mormons. I have been really impressed in all the research and time your have spent working on your site. . . . Also, I am interested in receiving the Messenger newsletter. Mahalo for your time.

In His grace,

March 20, 2004

Subject: This is good news...

I have read so many times about how the LDS Church is the fastest growing church with 11 million members and growing. What a relief it was to read that LDS Church has 5.4 million. Is this a recent decline or was the Church trying to boast of something they wish they had?

Religion briefs-- 2004 yearbook charts trends in U.S., Canadian churches

NEW YORK (AP) -- An annual statistical report on the strength of North American churches found membership has increased in some of the largest denominations and among some smaller Pentecostal churches. The recently released 2004 Yearbook of American & Canadian Churches reported growth in the two biggest U.S. faiths: the Roman Catholic Church and the Southern Baptist Convention. Researchers also found rising numbers in the Cleveland, Tenn.-based Church of God, a Pentecostal denomination which now has 944,857 members.

Some mainline Protestant denominations -- including the United Methodist Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America -- had membership losses, continuing a trend that began years ago.

The Catholic Church remains the largest U.S. denomination by far, with 66.4 million members, followed by the 16.3 million-member Southern Baptist Convention, the biggest Protestant group, according to the yearbook. The United Methodist Church comes next, with 8.3 million members, followed by the Church of God in Christ, with 5.5 million. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is ranked fifth, with 5.4 million members.

[Sandra's Note: Sorry, you are mixing numbers. The 5.4 million member count in the article refers to those LDS in the USA. The 11 million member count refers to the world wide LDS membership. However, about half of Mormons no longer attend and the church never tells how many have left. So I think the number of Mormons is probably more like half of the 11 million number. For more info, see a recent independent study of religious affiliation in the U.S. here—http://www.gc.cuny.edu/studies/aris_index.htm.]

March 21, 2004

Subject: Hello

... I am a very concerned Mormon. Your organization have constructed many "strawman" interpertations of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

Being as though I have enough media at my disposal I will be taking down Ed Decker and his "ministries" via-awareness (talk show, publication, public speaking). I am merely giving you forewarning that you are next.

Again this is not a threat, I am not threatening any bodily harm, as a I wish the both of you the best of health. However, I am a defender of the plain and precious truths of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. That same gospel that you distort and defimate through your attacks on the CoJCoLDS. Thank you for your time

March 22, 2004

Subject: God bless you..

To all of utlm,

Hey I just wanted to say thank you for your wonderful site and all your useful resources. I have been a Christian for five years now after growing up in the Mormon church and I have found your resources invaluable in witnessing to my immediate family, especially my dad.

I was on the phone talking with my dad once and the conversation led to a point where I could start talking about the temple rituals. I told him that I knew all about the secret hand shakes and the endowment ceremonies and started actually quoting the endowment ceremony verbatim and he hung up the phone! I have talked to him since but he has not been so zealous about his faith all of a sudden. It was really weird. That was the first experience that I had in discussing anything temple oriented. But it went well (for me anyway).

Anyway, Thank you for your outstanding efforts to reveal the truth behind the Church. ...

May God bless you and watch you as you proclaim His word.

March 22, 2004

Subject: Church history

Hello. I am an active mormon from sweden, we have six children together and the church is true.

I have digged a little in antimormon litterature and compared it to scolaranswers,mormons. I have noticed that the text itself from the book of mormon and the text itself from the book of Abraham in connection with the holy spirit is the best source if you want to find out the truth.

When it comes to history of the church it is very speculative, and the best comment I ever read about the truthfullness of the history of the church is something like " I wouldn´t bet my soul on it" and " unfortunately Brigham Young is not here to answer you questions".

Why do you focus so much on speculative things when you have the text from the book of mormon. I think you are loosing the battle without knowing it. I feel sorry for you but I hope you will come back to the church in spite of the members fault and the leaders and prophets faults.

Best regard

March 23, 2004

Dear Tanners,

Talk about deception--I typed in "Book of Mormon" into my web browser and was taken to this site. A clever ploy to funnel in people. Nice touch.

But since I saw your site, I figured I would just write a quick response. I harbor no hard feelings toward your work. I just wonder--when you think of the Lord our Savior, do you think of him as the tangible, real Being that he most certainly is? If you do, thank goodness for the Restoration. It would really be hard to fully de-convert and accept the amorphous God that is mainly a creation of mysticism, Greek Hellenism, and apostasy. Without this knowledge the Restoration blessed you with, you would have to revert back to this 3-in-one God--who can never be touched, never really be thanked, and never really be known. I bet, at the end of the day, the God of the Restoration is still the God you return to in prayer and in thanksgiving.

The other version is simply a contradiction that cannot be explained. ...


March 23, 2004

Subject: Pre-Columbian Horses

Hello, Tanners!

First let me thank you for your WONDERFUL site! I was a 30 yr. old BIC, married in the temple, true-blue mormon when I found your site and finally saw the truth. It was one of the most influential sites I visited that helped me and my family of 6 resign from the LDS church. I am impressed with you desire to produce truthful evidence and accounts and not running with every "anti-mormon" attack that comes along.

Here is my question. Someone sent me this link about proof of pre-columbian horses:


Do you know anything about these pictures? ... I know you are very busy, but I hope you will have time to respond. The fact that there may have been horses in pre-columbian times wouldn't make me think the LDS church is "true", but I am interested nonetheless.

Thanks again!

[Sandra's Note: Professional archeologists do not accept these findings. See the Smithsonian letter.

Michael Coe, author of The Maya and Breaking the Maya Code, sees no evidence for the horse during Book of Mormon time periods. The inscriptions and drawings are questionable as to dating in relationship to Book of Mormon time periods. Read Quest for the Gold Plates by Larson, or New Approaches to the Book of Mormon.

Here is a link to a good article on Book of Mormon problems: http://irr.org/MIT/bomarch2.html

While I don't agree with this man's atheism, he has some good points on the issues at hand: http://exmormons.faithweb.com/steelmill.html ]

March 23, 2004

Hey guy's

I was told by an LDS missionary yesterday that the [Book of Mormon] plates being returned to the Angel Moroni was not church doctrine. I told him that I was raised in the church and that I learned it at a very young age.

Where can I find it in there books? ...

[Sandra's Note: Joseph Smith wrote in his history—

At length the time arrived for obtaining the plates . . . where they were deposited, the same heavenly messenger delivered them up to me with this charge: that I should be responsible for them; . . .until he, the messenger, should call for them, . . . When, according to arrangements, the messenger called for them, I delivered them up to him; and he has them in his charge until this day, being the second day of May, one thousand eight hundred and thirty-eight. (History of the Church, by Joseph Smith, vol.1, p. 18-19, Deseret Book, 1951)]

March 23, 2004

Subject: the faceless editor

i have just viewed your web page, and should say that there are many facts contaminated with falsehoods, such as satan is prone to do.

why a person should seek to make aware the common man of sacred truths is most interesting to me. what is gained? fight as they may, god's kingdom will flourish with growth. forwards, never backward.

can i appreciate your views and opinions? of course i can, and that is what i love about america, but the blandishments of this web page are futile at best. anybody swayed by the opinions of this site are weak in god's one and true gospel in the first place and would not pass his all searching eye in that great and dreadful day. a testimony is an unshakable thing friend. of that i can boldly testify in christ's beloved name.

would i be wrong in assuming you have not read and prayed with the fervency about the book of mormon you have so genuinely given to the bible? god's word is revealed to those who are seeking to build others up, not down or away. ...


March 23, 2004

Subject: Women's names in the BoM

It seems I have always had the notion that there were few if any women's names mentioned in the BoM. I am in a situation that any reference to this information would prove valuable.

Thank you for your consideration

Your Brother in Christ

[Sandra's Note: See #72 Messenger: Women Missing?]

March 24, 2004

Subject: History of Magic Underwear

When Joseph Smith was shot to death on June 27, 1844, for seducing other men's wives, I presume he had the magic underwear on?

[Sandra's Note: According to William Clayton, Smith had taken the garment off prior to going to Carthage. Clayton recorded the following:

(December 21, 1845. Sunday.) According to appointment on Sunday last, a meeting was held in the east room [of the Nauvoo Temple] this day of all those who could clothe themselves in the garments of Priesthood, 75 persons were present, Elder H. C. Kimball presiding . . .

Elder Kimball next addressed the meeting. . . .

Elder Kimball showed the right fashion for a leaf [for the temple apron], spoke of Elder Richards being protected at Carthage Jail, having on the robe [temple garment], while Joseph and Hyrum and Elder Taylor were shot to pieces, . . .

Elder John Taylor confirmed the saying that Joseph and Hyrum and himself were without their robes in the jail at Carthage, while Doctor Richards had his on, but corrected the idea that some had, that they had taken them off through fear. W. W. Phelps said Joseph told him one day about that time, that he had laid aside his garment on account of the hot weather.

Elder Kimball said word came to him and to all the Twelve about that time to lay aside their garments, and to take them to pieces, or cut them up so that they could not be found.

. . . Here is brother [Theodore] Turley has been liberated by the power of God and not of man, and I have covenanted, and never will rest nor my posterity after me until those men who killed Joseph and Hyrum have been wiped out of the earth. (An Intimate Chronicle: The Journals of William Clayton, p.223-224)]

March 24, 2004


I have just resigned from the church and would love to get the Messenger and any freebies you would like to send my way. I am so thrilled that I was able to find out the truth about the church from the internet.


March 24, 2004

To the Tanners

I have heard many old(er) stories about you and it seems from these tales that you have been doing your work for a long time.

I have come across your website a couple of times and I am amazed at your tenacity and that you (the Tanners) have not retired to Las Vegas or California or some place less hostile.

In the last year I had the opportunity to engage a couple of teams of young Mormon elders/missionaries in discussion. When meeting up with a new team a couple of weeks later I was asked if I was Mr. Connors and when I said yes, they said they had to leave. Instead I left after I gave them my number.

What has been interesting though is that some of my friends who are lay leaders in my old church in California have indicated that I was wrong to confront these young missionaries as it disrespected these men's beliefs. (Fortunately it takes more than this to discourage some of us.) I can only imagine the reception you get from the majority of people in Utah. . . .

Your brother in Christ

[Sandra's Note: Thanks for the note. Unfortunately, some Christians think that any and all witness to Mormons is offensive and wrong. Sometimes they have just never seen someone do it in love and respectful tones, only in a hostile form. Many returned LDS missionaries have told me that their first doubts started from some Christian talking to them while they were on their mission.]

March 25, 2004

Do you know of any connection between Mormonism and Swedenborgianism?  Emmanual Swedenborg wrote a book called "Heaven and Hell" where he describes a spiritual pre-existance, three levels of heaven, and marriages in heaven.

[Note: We are somewhat familiar with parallels to Swedenborg. When Jerald left Mormonism he had a LDS friend that was attracted to that.

Several books and articles have mentioned the parallels. Dan Vogel, in his book The Word of God, p.194, observed:

Eighteenth-century visionary Emanuel Swedenborg ...declared that there are earths inhabited by men, not only in this solar system, but also out of it in the starry heaven, to an immense number.& Where there is an earth, there are men; for man is the end for which every earth was created, and nothing was made by the Great Creator without an end.

An article in Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Vol.14, No.1, p.61-2, pointed out the similarities of dividing heaven into thee levels:

"Swedenborg observed that there was no social intercourse between the three heavens, and that furthermore each was divided into societies according to the angels' interior affections. ...The garments of angels correspond to their intelligences, as their dwellings correspond to their rank; thus it seems that the heaven of one spirit is never identical with that of another.

"The Saints, too, conceive of a spirit world divided into three parts. The majority of the earth's inhabitants, according to Mormon doctrine, are destined for the lowest realm of glory known as the telestial kingdom....

"Good people who truly prefer perpetual celibacy are escorted to the side of heaven because for Swedenborg the center belongs to married partners. ... But whether Swedenborg believed that the physical aspects of earthly marriages are incorporated in celestial ones is unclear. He described the latter in Heaven and Hell as 'conjunctions of minds' while a decade later in Conjugial Love he wrote that he overheard an angel tell curious newcomers that although heavenly unions were similar to those on earth even to the ultimate delights, they were much more blessed because angelic perception and sensation is much more exquisite than human."

D. Michael Quinn, in his book Early Mormonism and the Magic World View, p.174, pointed out that "...the only pre-1830 advocate of three heavens was apparently Swedish mystic Emanuel Swedenborg."

George D. Smith, in Faithful History, p.ix, observed: "...similarities have been found between Joseph Smith's revelation of the three degrees of afterlife glory and the contemporary writings of Thomas Dick and Emanuel Swedenborg."

The concept of pre-earth life was pointed out in an article in Dialogue, Vol.29, No.2, p.29: "There is a parallel in Swedenborg to pre-existent matching of spirits, the doctrine Joseph taught Mary Elizabeth Lightner when he proposed to her 'Two souls which grew up together before life are bound to find each other again on earth.' "

An article in Dialogue, Vol.23, No.2, p.104, observed that "...ideas about the spirit world had been given an elaborate boost in the eighteenth century by the writings of Emanuel Swedenborg. Even more interesting is the fact that 'Mother Ann's Work' began among the Shakers in 1837. Through spiritualist phenomena, Shakers were informed that bands of Indian spirits as well as spirits of people from all over the world who had died long ago were being converted to Shakerism."

For more on Swedenborg see http://craigwmiller.tripod.com ]

March 26, 2004

I have been doing much research and want to thank you for revealing truth in a loving way. I am suffering with both pain/sorrow and joy. I am an LDS convert of 16 years, temple married, mother of four. The church has been my husband's "mother" teaching him the values a mother would have taught had he had one. I love him very much and have hurt him terribly and he is hoping we can just go on and pretend "all is well in Zion". I love my Saviour and my husband dearly and desire to honor them both.

March 26, 2004

Hi there!

... I want to tell you that whenever anyone mentions on the internet of visiting your store, they all say the same thing--whether they are mormon or not... and that is that you are "gracious" ...I wanted to tell you thanks so much for your help.

March 29, 2004

Subject: How did Joseph Smith write the BoM?

First, thank you for publishing the information on this site. I am grateful to have it available to me as I sincerely try to answer questions about my faith and beliefs. As a 30 year convert to the LDS church, and one who constantly struggled with trying to live up to the church's expectations, I have finally reached a point where I need to know whether the doctrines are correct.

I am pretty well convinced now that the current church has very little to do with the church that Joseph Smith founded, and that his church had very little to do with inspiration or revelation. While I find the church members to be good friends, I no longer believe, for example, that a cup of coffee is going to keep me from dwelling with God.

One of the last curiosities that I have is how Joseph actually managed to provide a "translation" without others catching the deception. Did he somehow write the material ahead of time and hide it during his translation work? Did he make it up as he read to his scribes? Was it some combination? Perhaps all that you can do is speculate, but it seems that it would take a very intelligent person to dictate the material without the value of written notes.

Thanks for considering this question,


[Sandra's Note: I assume he had some sort of notes, but not a complete manuscript. He sometimes had a blanket hanging between himself and his scribe, so there is no way to know exactly what he was using. He obviously had a Bible on the table as he quotes such long passages from the book of Isaiah from the King James Version. Some of the meandering, wordy passages in the Book of Mormon would indicate he was telling the story from notes, not reading a completed text. This could explain why he was so devastated when Martin Harris lost the original 116 pages of manuscript.

See our newsletters on the Black Hole theory:

Topical Index: Book of Mormon: Black Hole

And also—Golden Bible, The Stolen Manuscript: The lost 116 Pages of the Book of Mormon

A good book on the subject is The Creation of the Book of Mormon.]

March 30, 2004

Subject: It's unfortunate that you have left the fold

Dear Jerald and Sandra,

It's disheartening to have happened upon your webpage and see that you were once members of the one true church of Christ, but now belong to a debunked protestant organization bent on slandering the Church. I read through much of your page, the various articles and essays, and I have to say that nothing good can come from those whose sole purpose is to censure the beliefs of others. If Mormonism is wrong, then what is right? Obviously the spirit of truth and enlightenment has long since been neglected in your hearts. I feel sorry for you and hope that one day you'll return to the Lord.

Have either of you served missions for the Church? Have you offered yourselves freely to the work of the Lord? I have, two years in Mexico City. I had doubts, just like everyone in the Church, but instead of looking for reasons not to believe I prayed for answers and inspiration. And do you know what? I have received answers to my prayers. I know that God lives, that his Son died for us, and that Joseph Smith was his prophet who was chosen to restore his Church upon the Earth. I served the Lord, I prayed for months, I still pray, and I know that the Church is true! I hope that one day you will also.

With the most sincere hope that you will find the truth,

March 30, 2004

Good evening,

I really enjoyed this article by Ezra T. Benson [Read the Fourteen Fundamentals here.]. I agree with it as well. When considering what is spoken, I'm sure many people do not think it is the right thing to do, follow the counsel of a living prophet like Gordon B. Hinkley for example.

I realize that a great many people do not believe in modern prophets today. I do. I wonder what anyone might think if they would take this "speech" of his and compare it to say; following Moses anciently.

I think the criteria is right on in every aspect. Place the name Moses in each of the 14 points and I think that they all describe very well what to do and how to follow him.

As people do not believe in prophets of our day, so there were who do not believe in Moses in his day, and they were just as quick to reject him for the same reasons people do now.


March 31, 2004

Dear ULM,

Let me first say that I am thankfull to God for your ministry. I am an evangelical Christian who takes seriously our task to defend our faith (1 Peter 3:15) and to remove whatever road blocks stand between people and the knowledge of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5).

I have a brief question about salvation as it is understood in Mormon theology. As far as I can tell, Mormons believe that "salvation" is really synonymous with "resurrection". Ones placement in either the terrestrial, cellestial , or tellestial kingdoms then is entirely contingent on a persons own merit (i.e., their works). The death and resurrection of Jesus, in Mormon theology, do not serve to justify us before God. Rather, they serve to resurrect us at best. That's why Mckonckie said that the "grace" of God as manifest in the death and resurrection of Jesus is applied even to those who are "sons of perdition"—since they are raised. Am I right about this?

Any clarity you can offer would be much appreciated!

God bless!

[Sandra's Note: Yes, that is what I get out of the LDS statements. You might find this chapter helpful—Mormon Claims Answered: Chapter 8.]

March 31, 2004

Subject: The Trinity

I told Mom to find someplace in the Bible where it says Jesus and the Holy Ghost are one. There are tons where God and Jesus are mentioned as one but never the Holy Spirit. If the trinity is true according to the Bible it should state that the holy ghost is one with God and Christ. It does NOT. None of those references support the third part of the trinity.

...Above is a copy of email received from our Mormon daughter ... We are Methodists ... We are heart broken to say the least and will appreciate any help and advise to rescue her and her children.

[Steve's Note: The Bible does teach that the Holy Ghost (Holy Spirit) is God. First, I would remind you of Matthew 28:19. Second, recall that the Bible and even Jesus himself claims there is only one God. (See Mark 12:29, Is 45:5) Finally, in Acts 5:1-11 (esp. vv. 3-4) scripture teaches that the Holy Spirit is God.

Interestingly, not only does the Bible teach this but the Mormon Scriptures teach that the Holy Ghost (Holy Spirit) is God. A few examples of this can be found at the following places: The Title Page of the Book of Mormon, The Testimony of the Three Witnesses; 2 Nephi 31:21; 3 Nephi 11:27; Mormon 7:7; and Doctrine and Covenants 20:28. Even the Encyclopedia of Mormonism, edited by Daniel Ludlow, states: "The Holy Ghost is the third member of the Eternal Godhead, and is identified also as the Holy Spirit, Spirit of God, Spirit of the Lord, and the comforter." (Vol. 2, p. 649)

You will also find more information about this in Mormon Claims Answered: Chapter 2.]

March 31, 2004

...I came out of Mormonism almost ten years ago as a result of reading Major Problems of Mormonism.

I've been dialoguing with a new Mormon, who read my testimony on the internet a couple of weeks back. He just joined them a little over a month ago.

To make a long story short. I have pretty much covered most of the major issues that expose Mormonism for the lie that it is. And I've been praying for this guy ... This morning, just before leaving for work, I received an email from him, wherein he pretty much admits that I've proved my case, and that he doesn't have an argument to refute it. And he said that he is going to believe in Mormonism even though he believes I am probably right about all that I've said to him about Mormonism. He even goes as far as to admit that Joseph Smith may well have been a con man and made it all up; but even though, he says he believes in it!

My head is spinning here. How can a guy just check his brain at the door so quickly? I don't get it! ...

March 31, 2004

Subject: Hello from a distant relative and sister in Christ.

Hello Sandra,

I've appreciated your website for some time now. I have never been in the LDS church myself, but have had a large interest in it because of Mormons I have known and because I too am a descendent of Brigham Young. ( Which shouldn't be all that uncommon - gee there should be thousands!) But just recently I was reading at your site about the Mountain Meadows Massacre and recognized familiar names in your ancestry.

I too am a great, great grandaughter through Brigham Young Jr. and his wife Abbie Stevens Young! You mentioned yours was through their son Walter. I'm descended from his only brother Brigham. My grandfather Brigham (I've heard him referred as BY III , but I've never seen it in print) married another descendant of BY - Consuelo who came from BY Jr.'s youngest sister Alice. There was an extra generation in that line so my mom is both a great grandaughter through her father, and a great, great grandaughter through her mother.

My mom has said she was baptized into the church as a child to please her grandmother Abbie, but she never was a practising mormon. She is into New Age beliefs. I met Jesus as a teenager through a friend.

Never having been in the LDS culture, I'm not sure, but I get the feeling that this kind of ancestry is a big deal to them. It seems that it has given me a more credible platform with them to talk about God. I pray that God can use it however He wishes. But I would think that the LDS church would be filled with BY descendents and not that big of deal. It makes me wonder if many of the families of the LDS founders have drifted away from the church. Hmmm, I think that would be kind of telling.

... Thank you for your ministry and the good work you and your husband do. I pray that God will continue to bless it have have eyes opened. It would be neat to know how many descendents have found the truth.

[Sandra's Note: Great to hear from a relative that is a Christian. I suspect quite a few of Young's descendents left Mormonism. But there are still some here Utah that I hear about every once in a while. I knew Abby Stevens Young when I was a child in the 1940's. She lived up on the avenues here in Salt Lake with a daughter.]

March 31, 2004

dear mr. and mrs tanners, a very interesting web site. i have always wondered why people belong to the Mormon church it seems to be way off. keep up the good work. i also read an article that says you might be retiring

good luck, your new friend and reader

[Sandra's Note: Jerald has retired due to health problems but I am still working at the ministry and hope to for some years yet.]

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