Brethren knew reasons for priesthood ban in 1940s ....

The catch-all forum for general topics and debates. Minimal moderation. Rated PG to PG-13.
_Rollo Tomasi
_Emeritus
Posts: 4085
Joined: Fri Oct 27, 2006 12:27 pm

Brethren knew reasons for priesthood ban in 1940s ....

Post by _Rollo Tomasi »

The latest LDS official statement on the priesthood ban, and particularly the "we don't know the reason for the ban" excuse, doesn't seem to jive with statements by the First Presidency in the 1940s on the issue. Here is the relevant text from a letter dated July 17, 1947, from the First Presidency to Lowry Nelson (emphasis mine):

...

The basic element of your ideas and concepts seems to be that all God's children stand in equal position before Him in all things. Your knowledge of the Gospel will indicate to you that this is contrary to the very fundamentals of God's dealings with Israel dating from the time of His promise to Abraham regarding Abraham's seed and their position viz-a-viz God Himself. Indeed, some of God's children were assigned to superior positions before the world was formed.

We are aware that some Higher Critics do not accept this, but the Church does. Your position seems to lose sight of the revelations of the Lord touching the pre-existence of our spirits, the rebellion in heaven, and the doctrines that our birth into this life and the advantages under which we may be born, have a relationship in the life heretofore.

From the days of the Prophet Joseph Smith even until now, it has been the doctrine of the Church, never questioned by any of the Church leaders, that the Negroes are not entitled to the full blessings of the Gospel.

Furthermore, your ideas, as we understand them, appear to contemplate the intermarriage of the Negro and White races, a concept which has heretofore been most repugnant to most normal-minded people from the ancient patriarchs till now. God's rule for Israel, His Chosen People, has been endogamous. Modern Israel has been similarly directed.

We are not mindful of the fact that there is a growing tendency, particularly among some educators, as it manifests itself in this, are toward breaking down the race barriers in the matter of intermarriage between whites and blacks, but is does not have the sanction of the Church and is contrary to Church doctrine.

Faithfully yours,

George Albert Smith
J. Rueben Clark, Jr.
David O. McKay

Two years later, in an official statement dated August 17, 1949, the same members of the First Presidency said this (emphasis mine):

The attitude of the Church with reference to Negroes remains as it has always stood. It is not a matter of the declaration of a policy but of direct commandment from the Lord, on which is founded the doctrine of the Church from the days of its organization, to the effect that Negroes may become members of the Church but that they are not entitled to the priesthood at the present time. The prophets of the Lord have made several statements as to the operation of the principle. President Brigham Young said: "Why are so many of the inhabitants of the earth cursed with a skin of blackness? It comes in consequence of their fathers rejecting the power of the holy priesthood, and the law of God. They will go down to death. And when all the rest of the children have received their blessings in the holy priesthood, then that curse will be removed from the seed of Cain, and they will then come up and possess the priesthood, and receive all the blessings which we now are entitled to."

President Wilford Woodruff made the following statement: "The day will come when all that race will be redeemed and possess all the blessings which we now have."

The position of the Church regarding the Negro may be understood when another doctrine of the Church is kept in mind, namely, that the conduct of spirits in the premortal existence has some determining effect upon the conditions and circumstances under which these spirits take on mortality and that while the details of this principle have not been made known, the mortality is a privilege that is given to those who maintain their first estate; and that the worth of the privilege is so great that spirits are willing to come to earth and take on bodies no matter what the handicap may be as to the kind of bodies they are to secure; and that among the handicaps, failure of the right to enjoy in mortality the blessings of the priesthood is a handicap which spirits are willing to assume in order that they might come to earth. Under this principle there is no injustice whatsoever involved in this deprivation as to the holding of the priesthood by the Negroes.

Seems to me, after reading these statements, that Church leaders in the 1940s felt they had a solid understanding as to when, why and how as related to the priesthood ban, and, frankly, Randy Bott's unfortunate statements don't sound far off from these declarations.
Last edited by Yahoo [Bot] on Thu Mar 01, 2012 4:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Moving beyond apologist persuasion, LDS polemicists furiously (and often fraudulently) attack any non-traditional view of Mormonism. They don't mince words -- they mince the truth."

-- Mike Quinn, writing of the FARMSboys, in "Early Mormonism and the Magic World View," p. x (Rev. ed. 1998)
_consiglieri
_Emeritus
Posts: 6186
Joined: Tue Apr 24, 2007 10:47 pm

Re: Brethren knew reasons for priesthood ban in 1940s ....

Post by _consiglieri »

And they appear to be doctrine, even under the procrustean test proposed by BCSpace.
You prove yourself of the devil and anti-mormon every word you utter, because only the devil perverts facts to make their case.--ldsfaqs (6-24-13)
_Infymus
_Emeritus
Posts: 1584
Joined: Thu Dec 21, 2006 7:10 pm

Re: Brethren knew reasons for priesthood ban in 1940s ....

Post by _Infymus »

Liars at the One True Cult.

Absolute, pathetic, lying cult leaders.

Let's see what I can dig up in less than 5 minutes...



"For behold, the Lord shall curse the land with much heat, and the bareness thereof shall go forth forever; and there was a blackness came upon all the children of Canaan, that they were despised among all people.”

- Pearl of Great Price, Mormon scripture, Book of Moses 7:8; online at http://scriptures.lds.org/moses/

Prophet Joseph Smith, Jr. (1805 – 1844):

“I do not believe that the people of the North have any more right to say that the South shall not hold slaves, than the South have to say the North shall.... the first mention we have of slavery is found in the Holy Bible.... And so far from that prediction being averse to the mind of God, it [slavery] remains as a lasting monument of the decree of Jehovah, to the shame and confusion of all who have cried out against the South, in consequence of their holding the sons of Ham in servitude.”

- Prophet Joseph Smith, Jr., History of the Church, v. 2, p. 438; online at http://www.antimormon.8m.com/hocindex.html

“Thirteenth – ‘Are the Mormons abolitionists?’ No, unless delivering the people from priestcraft, and the priests from the power of Satan, should be considered abolition. But we do not believe in setting the negroes free.”

- Prophet Joseph Smith, Jr., History of the Church, v.3, p. 29; online at http://www.antimormon.8m.com/hocindex.html

Prophet Brigham Young (1801-1877):

“When all the other children of Adam have had the privilege of receiving the priesthood and of coming into the Kingdom of God and of being redeemed from the four quarters of the earth, and have received their resurrection from the dead, then it will be time enough to remove the curse from Cain and his posterity.”

- Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, v. 2, pp. 142-143; online at http://journals.mormonfundamentalism.or ... l2-27.html

“You must not think, from what I say, that I am opposed to slavery. No! The negro is damned, and is to serve his master till God chooses to remove the curse of Ham.”

- Prophet Brigham Young, New York Herald, May 4, 1855, as cited in Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Spring 1973, p. 56

“The moment we consent to mingle with the seed of Cain the Church must go to destruction, - we should receive the curse which has been placed upon the seed of Cain, and never more be numbered with the children of Adam who are heirs to the priesthood until that curse be removed.”

- Prophet Brigham Young, Brigham Young Addresses, Feb. 5, 1852, LDS historical department; online at http://www.geocities.com/solmes.geo/aam ... young.html and http://home.teleport.com/~packham/byoung.htm

“Cain slew his brother.... and the Lord put a mark upon him, which is the flat nose and black skin. Trace mankind down to after the flood, and tehn another curse is pronounced upon the same race – that they should be the ‘servant of servants,’ and they will be, until that curse is removed; and the Abolitionists cannot help it, nor in the least alter that decree. How long is that race to endure the dreadful curse that is upon them? That curse will remain upon them, and they never can hold the Priesthood or share in it until all the other descendants of Adam have received the promises and enjoyed the blessings of the Priesthood and the keys thereof. Until the last ones of the residue of Adam’s children are brought up to that favorable position, the children of Cain cannot receive the first ordinances of the Priesthood. They were the first that were cursed, and they will be the last from whom the curse will be removed. When the residue of the family of Adam come up and receive their blessings, then the curse will be removed from the seed of Cain, and they will receive blessings in like proportion.”

- Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, v. 7, pp. 290-291; online at http://journals.mormonfundamentalism.or ... l7-44.html

“Why are so many of the inhabitants of the earth cursed with a sin of blackness? It comes in consequence of their fathers rejecting the power of the Holy Priesthood, and the law of God. They will go down to death. And when all the rest of the children have received their blessings in the Holy Priesthood, then that curse will be removed from the seed of Cain, and they will then come up and possess the priesthood, and receive all the blessings which we now are entitled to. The volition of the creature is free; this is a law of their existence, and the Lord cannot violate his own law; were he to do that, he would cease to be God. He has placed life and death before his children, and it is for them to choose. If they choose life, they receive the blessings of life; if they chose death, they must abide the penalty. This is a law which has always existed from all eternity, and will continue to exist throughout all the eternities to come.”

- Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, v. 11, p. 272; online at http://journals.mormonfundamentalism.or ... 11-41.html

“I am as much opposed to the principle of slavery as any man in the present acceptation or usage of the term, it is abused. I am opposed to abuseing [sic] that which God has decreed, to take a blessing, and make a curse of it. It is a great blessing to the seed of Adam to have the seed of Cain for servants.... Let this Church which is called the Kingdom of God on the earth; we will sommons [sic] the first presidency, the twelve, the high counsel, the Bishoprick [sic], and all the elders of Isreal [sic], suppose we summons them to apear [sic] here, and here declare that it is right to mingle our seed with the black race of Cain, that they shall come in with us and be pertakers [sic] with us of all the blessings God has given to us. On that very day, and hour we should do so, the priesthood is taken from this Church and the Kingdom of God leaves us to our fate.”

- Prophet Brigham Young, Brigham Young Addresses, Feb. 5, 1852, LDS archives; online at http://www.utlm.org/onlineresources/ser ... blacks.htm

Prophet John Taylor (1808 - 1887):

“For instance, the descendants of Cain cannot cast off their skin of blackness, at once, and immediately, although every should of them should repent.... Cain and his posterity must wear the mark which God put upon them; and his white friends may wash the race of Cain with fuller’s soap every day, they cannot wash away God’s mark.”

- Prophet John Taylor, Millennial Star, v. 14, p. 418; online at http://www.lds-mormon.com/racism.shtml

“And after the flood we are told that the curse that had been pronounced upon Cain was continued through Ham’s wife, as he had married a wife of that seed. And why did it pass through the flood? Because it was necessary that the devil should have a representation upon the earth as well as God; and that man should be a free agent to act for himself, and that all men might have the opportunity of receiving or rejecting the truth, and be governed by it or not according to their wishes and abide the result; and that those who would be able to associate with the Gods in the eternal worlds. It is the same eternal programme. God knew it and Adam knew it.”

- Prophet John Taylor, Journal of Discourses, v. 22, p. 304; online at http://journals.mormonfundamentalism.or ... 2-297.html

Apostle Orson Hyde (1805-1878):

“We feel it to be our duty to define our position in relation to the subject of slavery. There are several men in the valley of the Salt Lake from the Southern States, who have their slaves with them.”

- Apostle Orson Hyde, Millennial Star, 1851, p. 63

Apostle George F. Richards ( 1861 - 1950 ):

“The Negro is an unfortunate man. He has been given a black skin. But that is as nothing compared with that greater handicap that he is not permitted to receive the Priesthood and the ordinances of the temple, necessary to prepare men and women to enter into and enjoy a fullness of glory in the celestial kingdom [i.e., godhood].”
- Apostle George F. Richards, Conference Report, April 1939, p. 58; online at http://www.ibae.org/html/fac139.html

Prophet David O. McKay (1873 - 1970):

“I know of no scriptural basis for denying the Priesthood to Negroes other than one verse in the Book of Abraham (1:26); however, I believe, as you suggest that the real reason dates back to our pre-existent life.”

- Prophet David O. McKay, as quoted in Mormonism and the Negro, Part 2, p. 19; online at http://www.mrm.org/multimedia/text/seed-of-cain.html and http://www.utlm.org/onlinebooks/changech10a.htm

Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith (1876 - 1972):

“Not only was Cain called to suffer, but because of his wickedness he became the father of an inferior race. A curse was placed upon him and that curse has been continued through his lineage and must do so while time endures.... they have been made to feel their inferiority and have been separated from the rest of mankind from the beginning.”

- Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith, The Way to Perfection, p. 101, 1935; online at http://www.rickross.com/reference/Mormon/mormon132.html and http://www.helpingmormons.org/Lectures.htm

“It is true that the negro race is barred from holding the Priesthood, and this has always been the case. The Prophet Joseph Smith taught this doctrine, and it was made known to him, although we know of no such statement in any revelation in the Doctrine and Covenants, Book of Mormon, or the Bible.”

- Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith, The Improvement Era, v. 27, p. 565; online at http://www.utlm.org/onlinebooks/changech10a.htm

“It is very clear that the mark which was set upon the descendants of Cain was a skin of blackness... It has been noticed in our day that men who have lost the spirit of the Lord, and from whom His blessings have been withdrawn, have turned dark to such an extent as to excite the comments of all who have known them.”

- Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith, Juvenile Instructor, v. 26, p. 635; online at http://www.lds-mormon.com/racism.shtml and http://www.mrm.org/multimedia/text/pure-white.html

“There were no neutrals in the war in heaven. All took sides either with Christ or with Satan. Every man had his agency there, and men receive rewards here based upon their actions there, just as they will receive rewards hereafter for deeds done in the body. The Negro, evidently, is receiving the reward he merits.”

- Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, pp. 65-66; online at http://www.mormonismi.net/artikkelit/ra ... toja.shtml and http://www.fairlds.org/apol/misc/misc19.html

“There is a reason why one man is born black and with other disadvantages, while another is born white with great advantages. The reason is that we once had an estate before we come here, and were obedient, more or less, to the laws that were given us there. Those who were faithful in all things there received greater blessings here, and those who were not faithful received less.”

- Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, p. 61; online at http://www.lightplanet.com/mormons/resp ... antage.htm and http://www.bcmmin.org/aframer.html

“It is not the authorities of the Church who have placed a restriction on him [the black man] regarding the holding of the Priesthood. It was not the Prophet Joseph Smith.... It was the Lord!”

- Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith, quoted in John J. Stewart, The Glory of Mormonism, 1963, p. 154

Apostle LeGrand Richards (1886 – 1983):

“Walters: On this revelation, of the priesthood to the Negro, I’ve heard all kinds of stories: I’ve heard that Joseph Smith appeared; and then I heard another story that Spencer Kimball had had a concern about this for some time, and simply shared it with the apostles, and they decided that this was the right time to move in that direction. Are any of those stories true, or are they all?

[Apostle LeGrand] Richards: Well, the last one is pretty true, and I might tell you what provoked it in a way. Down in Brazil, there is so much Negro blood in the population there that it’s hard to get leaders that don’t have Negro blood in them. We just built a temple down there. It’s going to be dedicated in October. All those people with Negro blood in them have been raising money to build that temple. If we don’t change, then they can’t even use it. Well, Brother Kimball worried about it, and he prayed a lot about it.”

- Apostle LeGrand Richards in an interview with Wesley P. Walters and Chris Vlachos, August 16, 1978, Church Office Building, available online at: http://www.lds-mormon.com/legrand_richards.shtml

Apostle Bruce R. McConkie (1915-1985):

“Negroes in this life are denied the priesthood; under no circumstances can they hold this delegation of authority from the Almighty. The gospel message of salvation is not carried affirmatively to them.... Negroes are not equal with other races where the receipt of certain spiritual blessings are concerned...”

- Apostle Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, p. 477, 1958; online at http://www.mormonismi.net/artikkelit/mu ... oppu.shtml

Apostle Mark E. Peterson (1900 - 1984):

“When he told Enoch not to preach the gospel to the descendants of Cain who were black, the Lord engaged in segregation.”

- Apostle Mark E. Peterson, “Race Problems – As They Effect the Church,” Address given at the Convention of Teachers of Religion on the College Level, delivered at BYU, August 27, 1954; online at http://www.mormonismi.net/mep1954/

“I think the Lord segregated the Negro and who is man to change that segregation?”

- Apostle Mark E. Peterson, “Race Problems As They Affect The Church,” Address At the Convention of Teachers of Religion On the College Level, delivered at BYU, August 27, 1954; see Abanes, One Nation Under God, p. 363; online at http://www.mormonismi.net/mep1954/

“Is there reason then why the type of birth we receive in this life is not a reflection of our worthiness or lack of it in the pre-existent life? ... can we account in any other way for the birth of some of the children of God in darkest Africa, or in flood-ridden China, or among the starving hordes of India, while some of the rest of us are born here in the United States? We cannot escape the conclusion that because of performance in our pre-existence some of us are born as Chinese, some as Japanese, some as Latter-day Saints. There are rewards and punishments, fully in harmony with His established policy in dealing with sinners and saints, rewarding all according to their deeds....

“Let us consider the great mercy of God for a moment. A Chinese, born in China with a dark skin, and with all the handicaps of that race, seems to have little opportunity. But think of the mercy of God to Chinese people who are willing to accept the gospel. In spite of whatever they might have done in the pre-existence to justify being born over there as Chinamen, if they now, in this life, accept the gospel and live it the rest of their lives they can have the Priesthood, go to the temple and receive endowments and sealings, and that means they can have exaltation. Isn’t the mercy of God marvelous? Think of the Negro, cursed as to the Priesthood.... This Negro, who, in the pre-existence lived the type of life which justified the Lord in sending him to the earth in the lineage of Cain with a black skin, and possibly being born in darkest Africa – if that Negro is willing when he hears the gospel to accept it, he may have many of the blessings of the gospel. In spite of all he did in the pre-existent life, theLord is willing.... to give him the blessings of baptism and the gift of the Holy Ghost. If that Negro is faithful all his days, he can and will enter the Celestial Kingdom. He will go there as a servant, but he will get celestial glory.”

- Apostle Mark E. Peterson, “Race Problems – As They Effect the Church,” Address given at the Convention of Teachers of Religion on the College Level, delivered at BYU, August 27, 1954; online at http://www.mormonismi.net/mep1954/

“We must not inter-marry with the Negro. Why? If I were to marry a Negro woman and have children by her, my children would oil be cursed as to the priesthood. Do I want my children cursed as to the priesthood? If there is one drop of Negro blood in my children, as I have read to you, they receive the curse. There isn’t any argument, therefore, as to inter-marriage with the Negro, is there?”

- Apostle Mark E. Peterson, “Race Problems – As They Effect the Church,” Address given at the Convention of Teachers of Religion on the College Level, delivered at BYU, August 27, 1954; online at http://www.mormonismi.net/mep1954/

Apostle N. Eldon Tanner (1898 - 1982):

“The Church has no intention of changing its doctrine on the Negro. Throughout the history of the original Christian church, the Negro never held the priesthood. There’s really nothing we can do to change this. It’s a law of God.’”

- Apostle N. Eldon Tanner, Seattle Magazine, Dec. 1967, p. 60; online at http://www.watchman.org/lds/smorgas.htm

Others:

“Having learned with extreme regret, that an article entitled, ‘Free People of Color,’ in the last number of the Star, has been misunderstood, we feel in duty bound to state, in this Extra, that our intention was not only to stop free people of color from emigrating to this state [Utah], but to prevent them from being admitted as members of the Church.”

- The Evening and the Morning Star, July 16, 1833, reprinted in History of the Church, v. 1, pp. 378-379; online at http://www.geocities.com/solmes.geo/res ... 7-379.html

“... a black skin is a mark of the curse of heaven placed upon some portions of mankind.”

- Juvenile Instructor, v. 3, p. 157; online at http://www.utlm.org/onlinebooks/changech10a.htm

“In fact we believe it to be a great sin in the eyes of our Heavenly Father for a white person to marry a black one. And further, that it is a proof of the mercy of God that no such race appear to be able to continue for many generations.”

- Juvenile Instructor, v. 3, p. 165; online at http://www.spotlightministries.org.uk/ldsrace.htm

“We will first inquire into the results of the approbation or displeasure of God upon a people, starting with the belief that a black skin is a mark of the curse of heaven placed upon some portions of mankind.... We understand that when God made man in his own image and pronounced him very good, that he made him white.”


- Juvenile Instructor, v. 3, p. 157; online at http://www.xmission.com/~country/chngwrld/chap9a.htm

“Those who believe that the Church ‘gave in’ on the polygamy issue and subsequently should give in on the Negro question are not only misinformed about Church History, but are apparently unaware of Church doctrine.... Therefore, those who hope that pressure will bring about a revelation need to take a closer look at Mormon history and the order of heaven.”

- Elder John L. Lund, The Church and the Negro, pp. 104-105, 1967; online at http://www.utlm.org/onlinebooks/changech10a.htm

“Those who would try to pressure the Prophet to give the Negroes the Priesthood do not understand the plan of God nor the order of heaven. Revelation is the expressed will of God to man. Revelation is not man’s will expressed to God. All the social, political, and governmental pressure in the world is not going to change what God has decreed to be.”

- Elder John L. Lund, The Church and the Negro, p. 109; online at http://www.mormonismi.net/artikkelit/mu ... peus.shtml

“First, [before the seed of Cain get the priesthood] all of Adam’s children will have to resurrect and secondly, the seed of Abel must have an opportunity to possess the Priesthood. These events will not occur until sometime after the end of the millennium.”

- Elder John L. Lund, The Church and the Negro, pp. 109-110

“The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has no call to carry the Gospel to the Negro, and it does not do so.”

- Elder Arthur M. Richardson, That Ye May Not Be Desired, p. 13; online at http://www.churches-of-christ.net/tracts/job081u.htm

“Also, the gospel was not carried to this segregated black group... the Negroes tread the earth with black dishonorable bodies as a judgment of God because at the time of decision in the pre-existence they were faint-hearted and exhibited an infirmity of purpose – they were not valiant in the cause of the Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, they were entitled to no better earthly lineage than that of the first early murderer, Cain. They were to be the ‘servant of servants.’ They were to be segregated. No effort was made to carry the gospel to them as a people.”

- Elder Arthur M. Richardson, That Ye May Not Be Deceived, pp. 9-10; online at http://www.utlm.org/onlinebooks/changech10a.htm

“... No direct efforts have been made to proselyte among them [Negroes].”

- Elder William E. Berrett, Vice President of Brigham Young University, Mormonism and the Negro, Part 2, p. 5; online at http://www.utlm.org/onlinebooks/changech10a.htm

“Even Joseph’s ‘calling for the end of slavery by 1850’ in his Presidential campaign is not so liberal as Brodie supposes.... Joseph Smith was, therefore, to some degree a racist, a segregationist, a colonizer, and only incidentally a supporter of abolition. He had some elements of liberalism in his thinking, but these had definite limits. His record... is marked with ambiguity.”

- Marvin Hill, BYU Professor, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Autumn 1970, p. 99

“A different thing is going on in South America where Mormon missionaries are pushing ahead full throttle. There the former careful selection to keep out ‘white Negroes’ has been allowed to slide a little.... ‘There is no question but that in Brazil they have been ordaining priests who are part Negro,’ said one careful observer.”

- Wallace Turner, The Mormon Establishment, p. 261, 1966

“The Negro Mormon can hold no office whatsoever in a church which offers some office to every one of its male members at some time in his life. A gray-haired Negro Mormon who may have spent his adult life in careful practice of all the complicated and demanding rules set down by the LDS church stands disenfranchised before the altar where a youth whose beard is just beginning to fuzz may preside.”

- Wallace Turner, The Mormon Establishment, pp. 243-244

“The Quorum upheld a decision by John Widtsoe denying a temple recommend to a ‘sister having one thirty-second of negro blood in her veins...’”

- Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Spring 1973, p. 66

Because of LDS policy toward nonwhites,
“the late sixties found the Brigham Young University the focal point of militant protests. Sports events provided the context for protests, boycotts, disrupted games, mass demonstrations, and ‘riots.’ At one point the conflict among schools within the Western Athletic Conference became so intense that the conference almost disbanded. Administrators, already embroiled in student demonstrations over Vietnam, began to separate themselves from the Mormon school. Stanford University, for instance, severed all relations with Brigham Young University.”

- O. Kendall White, Jr., and Daryl White, “Abandoning an Unpopular Policy: An Analysis of the Decision Granting the Mormon Priesthood to Blacks,” Sociological Analysis, v. 41, p. 233, Fall 1980

“In all humility I must say that God has not inspired me to feel good about the Church’s practices regarding Negroes.... when my wife and I went to San Francisco Ward’s bishop to renew our temple recommends, he told us that anyone who could not accept the Church’s stand on Negroes as a divine doctrine was not supporting the General Authorities and could not go to the temple. Later, in an interview with the stake president we were told the same thing: if you express doubts about the divinity of this ‘doctrine’ you cannot go to the temple.”

- Grant Syphers, LDS scholar, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Winter 1967, p. 6

“My plea, then to the civil rights organizations and to all critics of the Mormon Church is: get off our backs! ... agitation over the ‘Negro issue’ by non-Mormon groups, or even by Mormon liberals, is likely simply to increase the resistance to change.”

- Armand L. Mauss, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Winter 1967, pp. 38-39

“The Church is either true or it isn’t. If it changes its stand on the strength of the ‘great stream of modern religious and social thought,’ it will be proven criticism.... If the Church is true it will hold to its beliefs in spite of its members. If it is false, more power to the easy-way-out philosophers who claim to know the ‘imperious truths of the contemporary world.’”

- Paul C. Richards, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Autumn 1967, p. 6

“The revelation that the church is talking about with respect to the Negro and the priesthood should have been sought 50 years ago – not now when we are forced into looking for one. Even if a revelation should come now, we have compromised our position because it looks as if we have been forced into seeking it, which will be true.”

- Donald Ira French, Jr., Mormon elder and writer, Time, Nov. 1, 1963

“A 12-year-old boy scout has been denied a senior patrol leadership in his troop because he is black, Don L. Cope, black ombudsman for the state, said Wednesday.... The ombudsman said Mormon ‘troop policy is that in order to become a patrol leader, he must be a deacon’s quorum president in the LDS church. Since the boy cannot hold the priesthood, he cannot become a patrol leader.”

- Salt Lake Tribune, July 18, 1974

“The Saints would have been so much better off if they had never gone near Missouri because they... compromised their position by adopting an idea that already prevailed... that ‘Negroes are cursed with a black skin and that they are intended as the curse of Noah on Canaan goes, to be ‘servant of servants.’”

- Sterling McMurrin, “The Mormon Doctrine and the Negro,” address given to the Salt Lake Branch of the N.A.A.C.P., March 1969

“There are Negroes born into families of wealth and refinement, others who are blessed with great talents, and there are those born into the lowest classes of society in Africa, in squalor and ignorance, living out their lives in a fashion akin to that of the animals. Does not this infinite variety of circumstance give further evidence of man’s being assigned that station in life which he has merited by his performance in the premortal existence.”

- John J. Stewart, The Glory of Mormonism, 1963, inside front flap book cover and p. 44

“When God allows a spirit to take on a Negroid body, do you suppose He is unaware of the fact that he will suffer a social stigma? Therefore, if you say this Church is unjust in not allowing the Negro to bear the Priesthood, you must, to be consistent, likewise say that God is even more unjust in giving him a black skin.”

- John J. Stewart, The Glory of Mormonism, 1963, p. 154

“I want to talk to you a little bit now about something that is not missionary work, and what I say is NOT to be given to your investigators [potential converts] by any matter of means.... Why is it that you are white and not colored?.. God is not unjust to cause a righteous spirit to be born as a cursed member of the black race.”

- LDS European Mission president, Alvin R. Dyer, “For What Purpose?,” Missionary Conference in Oslo, Norway, March 18, 1961, printed in The Negro in Mormon Theology, pp. 48-58

“With the concurrence of President McKay, a young man of known Negro ancestry was ordained to the priesthood after receiving a patriarchal blessing which did not assign him to a ‘cursed’ lineage. In another case, President McKay authorized two children with Negro ancestry to be sealed in the temple to the white couple who had adopted them.”

- Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Spring 1973, p. 45

“[A Negro] looks as though he has been put in an oven and burnt to a cinder.... His hair baked crisp, his nose melted to his face, and the color of his eyes runs into the whites. Some men look as if they had only been burned brown; but he appears to have gone a stage further, and been cooked until he was quite black.”

- “From Caucasian to Negro,” quoted in Bush, Mormonism’s Negro Doctrine: An Historical Overview, pp. 57-58, endnote #99

R.L.D.S. Prophet, Joseph Smith III

“It is expedient in me that you ordain priests unto me, of every race who receive the teachings of my law, and become heirs accourding to the promise.... Be not hasty in ordaining men of the Negro race...”

- RLDS Prophet Joseph Smith III, revelation to the RLDS Church, May 4, 1865; online at http://www.centerplace.org/hs/dc/rdc-116.htm
_maklelan
_Emeritus
Posts: 4999
Joined: Sat Jan 06, 2007 6:51 am

Re: Brethren knew reasons for priesthood ban in 1940s ....

Post by _maklelan »

Rollo Tomasi wrote:Seems to me, after reading these statements, that Church leaders in the 1940s felt they had a solid understanding as to when, why and how as related to the priesthood ban, and, frankly, Randy Bott's unfortunate statements don't sound far off from these declarations.


What you say about how the church leaders felt in the 40s is true, as is the relationship of Bott's comments to the earlier publications. Since David O. McKay, however, the church has explicitly and consistently rejected those justifications for the ban and have mostly asserted that the ban was God's will, for whatever reason. (Kimball went so far as to acknowledge that it could be mistaken.) This is what makes Bott's comments damaging; they flatly ignore the church's consistent position over the last 30-40 years. This is hardly how an academic expert on church doctrine should be representing church ideology to the media.
I like you Betty...

My blog
_maklelan
_Emeritus
Posts: 4999
Joined: Sat Jan 06, 2007 6:51 am

Re: Brethren knew reasons for priesthood ban in 1940s ....

Post by _maklelan »

Infymus wrote:Let's see what I can dig up in less than 5 minutes...


It took me less than five seconds to dig it up:

http://mormonthink.com/QUOTES/antiblack.htm
I like you Betty...

My blog
_Rollo Tomasi
_Emeritus
Posts: 4085
Joined: Fri Oct 27, 2006 12:27 pm

Re: Brethren knew reasons for priesthood ban in 1940s ....

Post by _Rollo Tomasi »

maklelan wrote:It took me less than five seconds to dig it up:

http://mormonthink.com/QUOTES/antiblack.htm

Here is a link to another good list, courtesy of deconstructor:

http://i4m.com/think/history/mormon_racism.htm
"Moving beyond apologist persuasion, LDS polemicists furiously (and often fraudulently) attack any non-traditional view of Mormonism. They don't mince words -- they mince the truth."

-- Mike Quinn, writing of the FARMSboys, in "Early Mormonism and the Magic World View," p. x (Rev. ed. 1998)
_Rollo Tomasi
_Emeritus
Posts: 4085
Joined: Fri Oct 27, 2006 12:27 pm

Re: Brethren knew reasons for priesthood ban in 1940s ....

Post by _Rollo Tomasi »

maklelan wrote:This is what makes Bott's comments damaging; they flatly ignore the church's consistent position over the last 30-40 years. This is hardly how an academic expert on church doctrine should be representing church ideology to the media.

But the inconsistency you mention (i.e., the Church's position the last 30-40 years vs. the prior 100-plus years) is the very reason the Church needs to 'put this to bed' once and for all; otherwise, so-called "experts" like Bott (and his BYU resume did state his expertise was "doctrine of the Church") will continue to say this kind of garbage. It is time for the Church to issue a formal apology, admit to past institutional racism, and move forward.
"Moving beyond apologist persuasion, LDS polemicists furiously (and often fraudulently) attack any non-traditional view of Mormonism. They don't mince words -- they mince the truth."

-- Mike Quinn, writing of the FARMSboys, in "Early Mormonism and the Magic World View," p. x (Rev. ed. 1998)
_DarkHelmet
_Emeritus
Posts: 5422
Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2009 11:38 pm

Re: Brethren knew reasons for priesthood ban in 1940s ....

Post by _DarkHelmet »

Infymus wrote:Liars at the One True Cult.

Absolute, pathetic, lying cult leaders.

Let's see what I can dig up in less than 5 minutes...


Those historical quotes help to put in context why this statement is still in the Aaronic Priesthood manual to be taught to young men in the 21st century.

We recommend that people marry those who are of the same racial background generally


It is true that the gospel is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
"We have taken up arms in defense of our liberty, our property, our wives, and our children; we are determined to preserve them, or die."
- Captain Moroni - 'Address to the Inhabitants of Canada' 1775
_Darth J
_Emeritus
Posts: 13392
Joined: Thu May 13, 2010 12:16 am

Re: Brethren knew reasons for priesthood ban in 1940s ....

Post by _Darth J »

I, for one, find it to be immensely comforting to know that official pronouncements from the First Presidency about revelations and commandments of God are "speculation or opinions given with limited understanding."

Since I completely agree with the Church that the statements of its leaders are categorically speculation or opinions given with limited understanding, it has taken nothing more than a simple press release to allow me the legitimate status of being a faithful member in good standing.

Isn't it wonderful? Isn't it marvelous?
_maklelan
_Emeritus
Posts: 4999
Joined: Sat Jan 06, 2007 6:51 am

Re: Brethren knew reasons for priesthood ban in 1940s ....

Post by _maklelan »

Rollo Tomasi wrote:But the inconsistency you mention (i.e., the Church's position the last 30-40 years vs. the prior 100-plus years) is the very reason the Church needs to 'put this to bed' once and for all;


I think the recent statement by the church does exactly that, unless by "put this to bed" you mean "apologize." If so, you're not talking about inconsistency.

Rollo Tomasi wrote:otherwise, so-called "experts" like Bott (and his BYU resume did state his expertise was "doctrine of the Church") will continue to say this kind of garbage.


If they do say that stuff, their claim expertise is flatly undermined.

Rollo Tomasi wrote:It is time for the Church to issue a formal apology, admit to past institutional racism, and move forward.


So it's not about consistency or doctrinal clarity.
I like you Betty...

My blog
Post Reply