The Mormon Church Hides its True History
The following, along with many other articles on this web site, clearly demonstrates that it is official policy for the Mormon church to hide significant portions of its history to keep the history "faith promoting".
This page has quotes taken from two papers. One given by Boyd K. Packer a Mormon Apostle and another by D. Michael Quinn a church historian. The comments in [ ] are from "The Seventh East Press, November 18, 1981". The text in " " is from Boyd K. Packer's talk "Do not spread disease germs!" (Brigham Young University Studies, Summer 1981, pp. 259, 262-271). I am responsible for the combining of the two papers together. I want to thank the Mormon who sent these to me.
"I have come to believe that it is the tendency for many members of the Church who spend a great deal of time in academic research to begin to judge the Church, its doctrine, organization, and leadership, present and past, by the principles of their own profession.... In my mind it ought to be the other way around...."
"Your objective should be that they will see the hand of the Lord in every hour and every moment of the Church from its beginning till now....there is no such thing as an accurate or objective history of the Church which ignores the Spirit.... Church history can be so interesting and so inspiring as to be a very powerful tool indeed for building faith. If not properly written or properly taught, it may be a faith destroyer..."
"Some things that are true are not very useful."
[Turning to Elder Packer's caution that previously-published material is not always suitable for re-publishing, Quinn described the 'odd situation' created by General Authorities criticizing individuals for reprinting material that was viewed by General Authorities of an earlier era as faith-promoting and 'appropriate for children and recent converts.']
"The writer or the teacher who has an exaggerated loyalty to the theory that everything must be told is laying a foundation for his own judgment...."
[Quinn expressed the opinion that for LDS historians to avoid what Elder Packer called 'the unworthy, the unsavory, or the sensational' would be of questionable honesty and professional integrity and would do a 'disservice to the cause of the Church,' and open the Church and its historians to justified criticisms.]
"Teaching some things that are true, prematurely or at the wrong time, can invite sorrow and heartbreak instead of the joy intended to accompany learning.... The scriptures teach emphatically that we must give milk before meat. The Lord made it very clear that some things are to be taught selectively and some things are to be given only to those who are worthy."
[While Quinn noted that Elder Packer accused Mormon historians of ignoring 'fundamentals before presenting advanced information,' Quinn expressed the opinion that in reality Elder Packer 'is not advocating a gradual exposure to historical truth, but excludes that possibility.' He further asserted that Elder Packer's approach is not the same as Paul's recommendation of milk before meat, but rather a steady diet of milk. 'A diet of milk alone,' Quinn observed, 'will stunt the growth, if not kill, a child.]
"In an effort to be objective, impartial, and scholarly, a writer or a teacher may unwittingly be giving equal time to the adversary...."
"In the Church we are not neutral. We are one-sided. There is a war going on, and we are engaged in it. It is a war between good and evil, and we are belligerents defending the good. We are therefore obliged to give preference to and protect all that is represented in the gospel of Jesus Christ, and we have made covenants to do it...."
"There is much in the scriptures and in our Church literature to convince us that we are at war with the adversary. We are not obliged as a church, nor are we as members obliged, to accommodate the enemy in this battle."
[Quinn also accused Packer of advocating a history of the Church that denies any information which might be used against the Church by anti-Mormons. 'Using this standard,' Quinn stated, 'much of the Old Testament, the Gospel of John, and many of Paul's epistles would not have been included in the Bible.']
"The final caution concerns the idea that so long as something is already in print, so long as it is available from another source, there is nothing out of order in using it in writing or speaking or teaching."
"Surely you can see the fallacy in that...."
"You do not well to see that it is disseminated. It may be read by those not mature enough for 'advanced history,' and a testimony in seedling stage may be crushed."
"...We are entrusting you to represent the Lord and the First Presidency to your students, not the views of the detractors of the Church."
[Mormon apostles Ezra Taft Benson and Boyd K. Packer are advocating a kind of religious history which borders on idolartry...]
[Noting Elder Packer's concern that an accurate history of the Church must consider the spiritual powers operating therein, Quinn asserted that Packer has created 'an enemy that doesn't exist,' for it is impossible for any good historian, Mormon or otherwise, to write about Mormonism without discussing the prophetic claims of its leaders....]
[...To ignore the limitations and errors of significant statements of the prophets, Quinn feels, would be as false as to ignore their visions, revelations and testimonies.]
[While sacred history shows God's leaders as 'understandable human beings with whom people can identify and still revere the prophetic mantle,' Elders Benson and Packer, Quinn asserted, expect a history which makes LDS leaders 'flawless and benignly angelic.' Such a history of 'demigod-like Church leaders,' Quinn stated, 'borders on idolatry.']
Now returning to Eric: I read both these articles as I was working my way out of the church almost 2 years ago. There is no question it is the official church policy to conceal the true history of the Mormon church. The average Mormon only reads those portions that are selected by his or her leaders to be faith promoting.