Nov. 1, 2002
Subject: Little Mormon dillema, need Christian advice
This is _____ ______.
My family (parents, grandparents on dad's side, and many relatives) are LDS, even though, as you know I was born again about a year ago, after leaving the Mormon church in a rage of hatred and being an atheist, before turning to the God of the Bible....
Back when I was an atheist, I tried to leave the church by sending a letter of resignation ....The letter was received by my bishop, and was given to my parents, who told the bishop to disregard it.
Consequently, I'm still a Mormon according to records, even though I have accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior.
Nov. 1, 2002
Subject: Joseph Smith
Joseph Smith was a true prophet why don't you just pray and ask God if this is so before coming to your erroneos conclusions and misrepresentations of facts. You will meet him someday after this life and then shall you know that he is a servant of God.
Nov. 3, 2002
Why do you care so much about what Mormons are doing and their beliefs? If you truly believe that you know what the truth is, and that you have the truth, then why don't you focus your relationship on God?
I am a Mormon and throughout my whole life has the LDS Church taught us how evil or bad other religions are? There are hundreds of anti-Mormon site out there, but we as Mormons make "anti" site against other religions. Why not?
-First of all, because that is not the Christ-like thing to do.
-Second, because we don't need to because we are secure with what the truth really is.
Nov. 3, 2002
It claims that II Nephi 3:4-16 says that "Joseph (Smith) would be of the loins of Lehi, which of course, IF TRUE, would be a major problem for the Book of Mormon. I took the time to check this out and found NO evidence that this chapter of II Nephi was saying the Joseph (Smith) would be of LEHI's loins. It DOES say, in verse 7, that the "choice seer" would be of the loins of Joseph (of Egypt), not of Lehi. Read it yourself again (verse 7 in particular) as see if you don't agree that the "choice seer" is to be of the loins of Joseph (of Egypt), not of Lehi.
[Sandra's Note: Since 2 Nephi, ch. 3, starts out by identifying the blessing as being given to 'Joseph', son of Lehi, and v.3 assures this same Joseph that his seed will not 'utterly be destroyed' and then proceeds to explain how Joseph of Egypt received a promise that there would be a 'righteous' branch descended from him, that would be broken off (Nephites) and that there would arise a 'choice seer' it would appear that Joseph of the Book of Mormon is receiving a promise about his own descendent. Why would this promise be included at this point unless it was part of the promise given to the Book of Mormon Joseph?]
Nov. 3, 2002
Dear Sandra and Jerald Tanner,
...I am very curious. So, my questions are these: What is it like being one of those, "who lie in wait to deceive" (Eph 4:14)? Do you really think you are doing the Lord's work when you lie? Do you know that, when you lie, you server the father of lies? Do you enjoy preying upon the uniformed?
Your New Friend,
Nov. 3, 2002
I would just like to say thank you for reaffirming my profound knowledge that Jesus is the Christ and that His church is on the face of the earth with all the powers and blessings of Ancient times. ...The only thing that you do now is seek to tear down that from which you were once a part....Jesus is the Christ, Joseph Smith Jr. is a prophet of God, Gordon B. Hinckley is a true Prophet, with all the keys of the dispensation of the fullness of times in his position, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the only true and living church on the face of the earth. Hands down..........
Don't seek further to persecute something you know absolutely nothing about. You have no more light to base your findings on, for your light has become darkness and your hope is vain. So shall your lives be as the Nephites of another time. Your pride has become your downfall. May you find repentance in time or some sort of Glory when your lives are over.
You can tell all you know that _____ ______ KNOWS that Jesus Christ lives, for it has been given to me to know. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is His only Church, all must be given the opportunity to accept or reject it, just as they did when he was here on this earth....
Nov. 4, 2002
Subject: Seems odd
You guys seem real desperate to bash Mormonism. I just recently read your report on the so-called "Baptismal/Temple Ordinance" records for Adolf Hitler. Who are you to say Hitler didn't repent? That isn't your right, that is God's.
Nov. 4, 2002
My name is _____ ______ Six years ago I ...requested information from your ministry because my boyfriend, _____, was involved in the LDS church. He had accepted Christ as a teenager, but did not have a solid church family to support his spiritual growth and had returned to the LDS church that he had grown up in. The information that you sent to me was extremely helpful, and I apologize for not thanking you earlier. About 6 months after receiving the information _____ left the church.
We were married in 1997, and we have a wonderful Christ-centered life together. _____ has continued to grow as a Christian, and we are now starting to see opportunities to reach out to others who are lost in the LDS church. I just wanted to write this quick message of encouragement to you. I cannot tell you how grateful I am for your help in rescuing my loved one. The Lord has blessed me with a beautiful family, and He used your ministry as an instrument in doing so. Thank you so much.
Nov. 5, 2002
Subject: Non-mormon discrimination
I have found your website fascinating and not a little harrowing. My wife and I contemplate a move to Utah next year. ...
Thank you ...
Nov. 5, 2002
Subject: I am a Mormon who will not read D&C 132!
I am still a member of the LDS faith, and I don't know if that will ever change. But what has changed over the past year is my opinion about some of the "Doctrines" that are still held to be true by a majority of Mormons.
These are things that I no longer believe to be true. This is hard to say because you are supposed to sustain the prophets, dead or alive, in all things. However, I remember that Joseph Smith said "A prophet is a prophet only when he is acting as such". Brigham Young said in essence, "How do you know that I am not teaching you false doctrine? You can't, unless you ask God for yourself to know that these things are true". Christ said that you will be able to recognize truth by the fruit that it produces. I keep this in mind all the time.
Jerald and Sandra Tanner have made great efforts to reproduce rare historical documents that shed light on some of the fruit produced by the church in early Mormon history. I especially want to thank them, along with Todd Compton, for presenting Polygamy thoroughly, without censoring information that could make mainstream Mormons uncomfortable.
Because of honest historians who refuse to sugar-coat our doctrine and history, I can form my own opinion based on complete information. I was able to read first-hand accounts of those who lived "the Principle" and preached it from the pulpits. I now know that love wasn't an issue in plural marriage. I know that a woman's unhappiness with the doctrine didn't matter. Joseph Smith used lies and deceit to practice polygamy.
I know that according to the church's teachings, I will be required to share my husband after I die in order to attain the highest celestial glory. I guess I will have to settle for being a mere servant, ministering to my polygamous superiors for all eternity. The fruit produced by this doctrine tastes bad to me, therefore I reject it. Thanks again to the Tanners for aiding my in my personal research.
Nov. 6, 2002
Subject: please read
I am still in shock of what I have seen. I can not believe that so many have fallen into satans trap. Doesnt anyone know that the tanners are one satans greatest tools. Please people read the doctrine ask in faith and then tell us it is not true dont lie to yourselfs. Please as GOD he will forgive you for falling into this trap. Dont let your salvation be ruined. My friends please dont be blinded by these writtings. The church will always exist please dont be mislead.
Nov. 6, 2002
I just wanted to say thank you. Approximately 25 years ago, I met a young woman who was a Mormon and I started dating her. We discovered each others faiths. My faith was tested! Your books informed me of the hidden theology the Mormon missionaries never preach to possible converts I.E. (plural gods, man can become a god ).
After much prayer asking the Holy Spirit for guidance, reading the Holy Scriptures, and your books I remained a Roman Catholic. I thank you for your honest and historical way you presented Mormon history and theology. God answered my prayers through your service and I remain in the church He founded over 1,900 years ago. ...
Nov. 7, 2002
boy i just wanted to find out about my geneology i dont know what kind of bug you all have up your asses about mormons but you sure do i think maybe there is something to them to have such adversity fro so many different people ill have to look into them and maybe you also
Nov. 9, 2002
My wife and I participated in the 6 Mormon missionary discussions earlier this year. After every meeting I wrote a report. They have now been published on Sharon Lindbloom's Word for the Weary website:
Click on the links: "Articles" > "Discernment" > "Taking the Mormon Missionary Discussions: A Christian Report".
We hope that these reports will be edifying to the Body of Christ, and help Christians to know how to share the truth in love to Mormon missionaries.
Yours in Christ,
Nov. 9, 2002
As a black return missionary a member this is the very stuff that makes the church grow cant you see. if you leave the church along then maybe it want grow as quick.
Nov. 9, 2002
Subject: NEW BOOK THAT I RECOMMEND
I just wanted [to recommend], An Insiders View of Mormon Origins. This book is written by Grant H. Palmer a recently-retired LDS Institute director. All of the founding claims of Mormonism are included in this book. Included are 56 photographs, footnotes, and index. Representative are chapters on Joseph Smith as a translator/revelator, authorship of the Book of Mormon (three chapters), Moroni and the golden pot, witnesses to the gold plates, priesthood restoration, and first vision.. ...
Nov. 9, 2002
Subject: wrong approach
Have you considered that the you may be following in the same footsteps as those who criticized Christ and His church? Christ had to proclaim Himself to be the son of God. He had to denounce the corrupt religions of His day. By the way, apostasy was a repeating pattern throughout the old testament. He had to introduce a new doctrine that was of a higher standard and different from the old religious order. He was eventually crucified for what he promoted.
This was the anti-Christ spirit. It was a spirit that contained a mixture of seeking signs (proof), skepticism, pride, debate, and close mindedness. The religionist of Christ's day were authoritative, educated, and capable leaders. As a result they would not look at what Christ presented. They would not humble themselves as the child. They would not repent and consider themselves sinners. They prided themselves on being able to speak and contend to validate their ideas and opinions. No doubt they developed many arguments using the scriptures to undermine Christ. No doubt they sought to twist His words, take points out of context, and undermine His credibility. Thus in their skewed paradigm they had blinded themselves to the truth. Seeing they could not see and hearing they could not hear.
The Lord reveals His will unto babes but hides it from the wise and learned. And those proud, wise, and learned typically go to the extreme to stomp the truth out. As is often the case in the scriptures, patterns repeat. Interestingly, the modern pattern of false persecution against the LDS church is very similar to persecutions of Christ. We see the same examples and experience the same spirit.
Nov. 9, 2002
Subject: David Persuitte
I am not a Mormon and have never been one but I do like to look into others beliefs. In browsing amazon.com on the subject of Mormons I came across David Persuittes' book Joseph Smith and the Origins of the Book of Mormon. I have to tell you he made quite a compelling case as to Joseph Smith being the author of the Book of Mormon. ...It is quite obvious that Joseph Smith was a fraud and wrote a book on a subject popular to his day.
Nov. 10, 2002
Subject: Thank you
My husband was disfellowshipped at age 12, having followed his parents out of the church. He still has some family members in the church, and we pray for their salvation.
Thank you for your work, and we keep you in our prayers.
Nov. 11, 2002
We are not and never have been Mormons. We want to thank you for your site. Roberta was raised Protestant and converted to Catholicism when she was in college; Ron was raised Catholic but has fallen away from the church and practices no religion. Both of us have MA's (she in Theology, he in History) and have been married for over 30 years; both of us are high school teachers (she Spanish, he history). Ron is writing a book on the Compromise of 1850, part of which dealt with the creation of Utah Territory, so he was looking for historical references to Brigham Young's experiment. Years ago he read what Bernard deVoto had to say about Mormonism's origins in "Year of Decision" but wanted to know more, so he came upon your site. Ron read through all of the letters from ex members and also the ones from Mormons attacking your site and from never-Mormons. These are our observations:
1. The secrecy with which the Mormon church maintains its "knowledge", following the plagiarized Masonic ceremonies and advancement through gradations: the Catholic church and no Protestant church maintain such secrecy regarding their teachings. Any Catholic, from the Pope down to a schoolchild, knows whatever has to be known to practice that religion, and anyone can find out all of the teachings in the "Catechism of the Catholic Church". Nothing is kept secret from the faithful.
2. The constant change of Mormon history: this is so reminiscent of Stalinism and the way it's portrayed in Orwell's "1984". Again, a Catholic parallel: no Catholic (from the Pope on down) denies that the Papacy was generally corrupt in the 9th-10th centuries and, after reforming, again in the 14th-early 16th centuries - otherwise there wouldn't have been a Protestant Reformation. This isn't hidden, it is freely admitted. The current Pope has taken this on. The same candor is true about the histories of the major Protestant churches. How does the Mormon church justify the constant changing from an "inspired revelation" (i.e., doctrine) of a prophet /president to "just the personal opinion" of the now-dead prophet/president, and still reflect an "unchanging God" whom they profess to love and serve? When we visited Salt Lake City last year we went into the museum on Temple Square. Seeing a photograph of an old patriarch and his wives, Ron asked one of the docents if they were a polygamous family, to be answered with silence and glazed eyes (he was reminded of a robot in a bad scifi movie saying "that does not compute, er, buzz, buzz, that does not compute"). Books such as Irving Wallace's "The Twenty-Seventh Wife" and Fawn Brodie's "No Man Knows My History" are helpful in understanding the origins of the Mormon church; that the Mormon church authorities can't dispute their contents is quite telling. That the most they can do is tell their followers not to read such books, but not be able to dispute the historical facts, is much like a parent trying to "shield" a child from perceived "bad influences." This is a parent's right when there are children involved, but in the case of adults, it is pathetic that literate Mormon adults are so governed.
3. The censorship of any Mormon scholarly dispute of the Book of Mormon again, this smacks of Stalinism (and totalitarian regimes in general). How can the Mormon church claim to pursue truth if it suppresses any dissent from not just established "truth" but "truth" that changes when the prophet changes his mind (eg, blacks, polygamy, Adam-God). The Catholic and Protestant churches do not make these shifts. Naturally, things change with the times and customary beliefs and practices (such as Catholics not being able to eat meat on Fridays until the 60s) change with the times, but the published core beliefs of these churches do not change. Regardless of whether individual clergy or congregants believe these, the Catholic and Protestant churches themselves still believe in the virgin birth and the resurrection, they believe that God has no beginning and no end, and they believe in the Holy Trinity. The Mormons, on the other hand, believe (at least this year) that God was a mortal from another planet. We are prepared to accept some of what films such as "In Search of Ancient Astronauts" suggests, but there can be no claim that any of those travelers were God (Ron once had a Mormon student suggest that it was a proof of their beliefs!!)
4. The denigration of women: how can modern, educated women accept such bovine excrement as polygamy in Heaven? We know several Mormon women, all well-educated professionals and absolutely sensible about their daily lives; we also know that they would be less than joyful to find their husbands going after another woman. Yet, their religion teaches them that they can expect just that as their heavenly reward - and they believe it!
5. The blind faith which is expected: again hints of totalitarianism. The Mormon writers who have attacked your site concede that there might be glaring errors and inconsistencies and downright falsehoods in the Book of Mormon, but their faith isn't shaken. A book that has been changed 4000 times (not just for grammar) in only 170 years is still taken as higher than the Bible - which hasn't changed at all in over a thousand years! They might argue that there are differences between the Catholic and various Protestant Bibles (King James, RSV, etc), but there are NO differences in the meanings of the verses. Different books included in the Bible because of dispute over whether they are canonical doesn't change this fact, nor do occasional different titles. Look at a Catholic Bible and any Protestant Bible and go to any citation, and while the words might be slightly different, the meaning is absolutely the same. The same claim cannot be made for the Book of Mormon between its first and most recent editions - as numerous writers here have amply proven (the original Book of Commandments is different from the present Doctrine and Covenants, which purports to be the same). When confronted with this fact, the reaction you receive is a blank "so-what?" stare.
6. The inconsistencies in Mormon belief and practice: a family-centered church? Utah has a high rate of teen suicides. Since masturbation is considered such a mortal sin, coming on the heels of apostasy, murder, and adultery/fornication, but apparently worse than robbery, is it to be wondered that so many teens feel so terribly inadequate, dirty, and despairingly evil? Temple weddings which do not allow the non-LDS parents or family to attend - are these a healthy start for a new family? The high rate of divorces among Mormons who are "sealed" - we know of two personally (both husbands had been bishops and both families had at least four children) - is out of proportion to their numbers in the general population. Regarding these two divorces the wives seemed to be perpetual "little girls" and the husbands left them for genuinely younger women. Do these facts speak well for the Mormons as "family-oriented"?
7. The consistency with which people left Mormonism: unlike that of other "ex's". Generally, an "ex-Anything" is bitter about the thing to which he or she has devoted part of his or her life. These vary, with ex-Catholics being offended by some kind of mistreatment, ex-Communists being disillusioned by the truth of Stalin's crimes, etc. They don't leave the group because of dogma. But the ex-Mormons seem to be bitter about being lied to re dogma, coming to the realization that they were cynically lied to by the church, and that when they asked questions about it they were told to shut up, pay up, and don't make trouble. They also were fairly uniform in their complaints about the cult-like nature of the church, keeping members in lock-step, keeping them busy, making life miserable for those who left or even questioned very much, and the difficulty of severing ties with the church. This isn't Branch Davidian or Jim Jones, but it is mind-control, one of the earmarks of a cult. That so many people have reacted to Mormonism in this particular way, people from all over the world, from all income and education levels, from all age groups, from both sexes seems to point out that there is something very wrong with that religion.
Ron has had trouble occasionally from Mormon students (or their families) when he was less than respectful of Brigham and his 27 wives, or the Mormon church's abolition of polygamy by divine revelation so that Utah could become a state, the Dannites and the Mountain Meadows Massacre, or his insistence that the Indians came from east Asia and nowhere else, etc etc. He continues to teach as he always has. He merely challenges these protesters to bring in proof that he is incorrect, genuine historical, contemporary proof. They never take the challenge.
Again, Tanners, thank you for such an informative site.
[Web-editor note: Names included with consent.]
Nov. 11, 2002
Subject: just heard of you
I was being sent a lot of interesting articles from the newspapers in SLC and a friend in Price, UT just gave me your site. ...I am very interested in your mission. I have a few LDS friends and like to understand more of their strange religion.
My husband and I were stunned at the quote on your opening page, to think anyone can follow Joe Smith when he actually said he is greater than our Savior, what a terrible belief...what can a person do to convince people of that blasphemy? I am just appalled right now....
[Sandra's Note: Thanks for writing. Our goal is to get the Christian community informed enough on the issues that they will be able to plant seeds of doubt in Mormonism and seeds of hope in the message of the Bible with their friends. It is usually a long slow process to get a Mormon to start thinking about the issues, but we must start some where. The plan is to keep asking them questions so that they will have to investigate their faith in a way they haven't before.
By the way, most Mormons have never read the sermon by Joseph Smith that you mentioned, which illustrates part of the problem. Most Mormons have never read their own scriptures or early leaders' sermons.
Several books that will help with asking questions are:
Hope this helps.]
Nov. 11, 2002
Hi Sandra and Jerald,
In Matthew 16:18 we are told by Jesus that the gates of hell will not prevailed against the Church. If we are to believe the Mormon theory that a total apostasy of the Church took place then the promise made by Jesus failed big time.
The question we all need to ask ourselves is: who are we going to believe, the promise of Jesus or the crazy notion put forward by the Mormons of a total apostasy? While the scriptures do talk about an apostasy, the fact is that this apostasy is an apostasy from the Church and not of the Church!
Nov. 12, 2002
Subject: Hello Sandra...Vickie from Las Vegas here!
buried my [LDS] dad in January and my aunt last weekend [in Utah]... The phrase "morning of the first resurrection" was repeated several times. I can't refute it in my mind because I don't understand the M[ormon] concept. Can you direct me to the answer or definition?
the prayer offered by family after the viewing was interesting...her son in law started out by praying to heavenly father and somewhere near the close he changed pronouns and started praying to the deceased. And they all told him what a wonderful prayer he gave.
Lost...lost...so very lost.
Stayin alive in Vegas where sin abounds...but grace more so.
[Sandra's Note: As for the LDS term 'morning of the resurrection' they believe the Mormons who will inherit the Celestial Kingdom will be resurrected first, during the morning of the resurrection, and then good non-Mormons will be resurrected in the afternoon, but the wicked will have to wait until the end of the millennial reign of Christ for their resurrection.
Here is a quote from LDS Apostle Bruce McConkie
Nov. 12, 2002
Jerald & Sandra,
I just finished reading your article. I found it to be incredibly well written! I have been trying endlessly to find something on-line worthy of printing out for my husband. He grew up in "THE" church, then left when he was a teenager - We have been married for 13 years and have children ages 13 and 9. My husband now has decided that he would like to study "the book" again to see if it is "TRUE". The potential influence of this "church" on my family - especially my kids, has me extremely worried...
All of my In-Laws are Mormon. - My Mother in Law was excommunicated from the church years ago, and she just this past few months has decided to rejoin the church. (Unfortunately she was part of the reason my husband decided to start meeting with the missionaries again.) I've been feeling a little panicked to further educate myself in this, so I can give my family a wider and clearer understanding of Mormonism. I've become so frustrated with this cult...(I mean religion) over the years!
Anyhow, I just wanted to thank you both for taking the time study and so clearly present this information on line. ... Your web page is definitely one of the more informative articles out there. Thanks again.
Nov. 13, 2002
Hi, Just a quick note to let you know that you have been a Godsend to our family.
I read an article in The New Yorker last year about the LDS church. As a Mormon I "knew" that all the things that were stated as fact about J. Smith couldn't be true! (I waited and waited for some sort of demand from the church that these lies be retracted! Kind of cute and naive on my part, huh?) So I read Mormon America, and just "knew" all the things they said about J. Smith and the church just couldn't be true. So I checked their sources, and found you on the Internet.
I thank God that you are Christians engaged in this ministry. My eyes have been opened, and I and my 3 children have left the church. We know now that it is in fact an all consuming cult, although an innocuous-appearing one built on a corporate model.
I read for many months- Mormon Enigma, your Online Resources, copies of the original Book of Commandments, and BOM, etc. At first I was angry at having been so thoroughly duped for so long, and sad about what I'd put my children and loving nonmember husband through. Now I feel more alive than I have in years, joyful at just being alive--all this in spite of having my "baptism" and all blessings taken away, since we asked to be removed from the church record books.
Please don't listen to the naysayers, let's just keep on praying for them. Please keep encouraging those who don't believe to get their names off the church's membership totals. They use the numbers to convert people. ...
Nov. 13, 2002
Subject: truth seeker
do you have any information on who financed the church in its beginings. can you send me any information to prove joesph smith was not a prophet. i heard he was into black magic and financed by the rothschilds. i am a member but its plain to see the prophet was a mason. i havent been to church because im trying to find real evidence for myself that the lds faith is a scam. please help me
[Sandra's Note: Joseph Smith persuaded his friend, Martin Harris, to mortgage his farm to pay for the printing of the original Book of Mormon in 1830. Mormonism was financed through sacrificial giving by its members. Unfortunately, they were following a false prophet.
The best biography of Joseph Smith is No Man Knows My History by Fawn Brodie. Our most comprehensive research is published in our book MormonismShadow or Reality? You can also read our book The Changing World of Mormonism on our website.]
Nov. 13, 2002
Subject: Garden of Eden
I just read an article at your website, 'Was The Garden of Eden in Missouri?' by Sandra Tanner.
In Abraham's Creation Drama by Hugh W. Nibley, I read:
...How did Adam get to Jerusalem? Was this a night vision similar to the vision of the Prophet Mohammed?
Thanks for any help,
[Sandra's Note: This is an example of the problems Mormons have in making sense of Joseph Smith's revelations. I assume Nibley has just chosen to ignore the fact that Smith said Adam was here in North America and has gone with the standard view that Adam was in the middle east.]
Nov. 13, 2002
Although I don't agree with everything on this site I would like to say that I thought your site was very informative. I have read a lot of religious/anti-religious material and I think yours made the most sincere effort at remaining objective. I was impressed with your willingness to thoroughly research an idea or claim before establishing it as fact or fiction.
I was curious however as to why you decided to dedicate so much time and effort to speaking out against a religion that, regardless of its authenticity, questionable past, or eternal truth, still is generally a worthwhile and positive influence for many people around the world. You both strike me as well educated and caring people and it seems as though your efforts could be better spent in other endeavors. If you find time in your schedule to respond to this I'd be interested to know why you choose this path in life, if not however I hope you continue to work towards finding the truth rather than jumping at any sensationalistic rumor for or against the mormon religion.
Thanks for your time,
[Sandra's Note: Jerald and I were both raised in fifth generation LDS homes and were raised to believe that Mormonism was factually true and the only church recognized by God. Originally our research was to satisfy our own minds about Smith's claims and what is original Christianity. After rejecting Mormonism and turning to the Bible as our sole guide to determine what it means to be a Christian, our family and friends were pressing us to repent and come back to the LDS faith. As a result we began printing up some of our research to share with them the reasons for our rejection of Smith and our acceptance of the Bible. Since Jesus made the specific claim that 'I am the way, the truth, and the life no man cometh unto the Father, but by me' (John 14:6) we feel it is important to proclaim that which is true and that which we have found to be false. One cannot be a follower of Christ and say that it doesn't matter what one believes. Otherwise, it makes His life and death meaningless.]
Nov. 14, 2002
Thank you for all your hard work. You do make a difference.
Nov. 14, 2002
Subject: LDS and Community Service?
Recently I took a close friend and current LDS member to my Episcopal Parish. He has not formally removed himself from LDS records. He and his family became members when he was four, he was also a missionary sent to Canada at age 19. I have sat for many hours listening to the dismal stories of the Mormon tradition. He was absolutely amazed after experiencing an Episcopal Mass. He said he had never witnessed such reverence and holiness in the House of God.
Furthermore, I have taken my friend out with me to distribute food to the homeless, as my parish does every morning at 6am. He was totally amazed at the thought that we were actually searching out folks who were living in garbage dumpsters and sleeping on the back docks of office buildings. Mormons, he says, do not involve themselves with such ministry.
Until now even as a missionary, he has not experienced such love and Christian work toward those who are the most loved by our Savior Jesus Christ. He tells me that all SLC was interested in were their quotas and productivity, and how hatefully he was treated when it was thought that he was not working fast enough to recruit members (ultimately not for their salvation through our Lord, but for their contributions).
In most every Episcopal Parish, one will usually find a haven for the needy, the lonely, the homeless, hungary, and anyone in need of help or love. All of God's children are welcome to share in His love, and NO ONE is turned away. This, I would believe, is the work that Jesus has taught anyone or any organization using His name to engage. And the work and worship that reveres God in his Holy House.( not secret Masonic hand shakes, secret language and outlandish rituals that exclude people from Jesus, rather than include them in his infinite love).
I pray that those seeking to exit the LDS, will find their way into the a Christian community that pracitices the true works of Christ as he has clearly taught us to follow. Furthermore, I pray for the children who are subjected into the LDS, those who cannot make their own decisions, for they are truly innocent and precious.
May the Lord someday take them into the His arms, to reveal and understand exactly what they have been taught. My friend is extremely excited to have found the Episcopal Church, a place where one does not need a 'secret' handshake, (I could not imagine what Jesus thinks of this practice), and a place where ALL humans, created by God, are excepted, loved, clothed, fed, and not forgotten. Perhaps Mr. Smith overlooked that part of the Egyptian translation on his golden plates. God Bless you for helping your fellow Christians find the real teachings of our Lord Jesus.
Nov. 14, 2002
Subject: What and Who?
What do you say is better than the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints? Meaning what church or organization directed, by Jesus Christ, is there that will allow me to have faith that the direction my life is heading is in accordance with the will of the Lord. Who has Jesus authorized as he did with Peter, James and John to guide the saints while he was gone? In other words who can I trust, that God has ordained to lead his people on earth. To act in His name.
[Sandra's Note: Truth is always better than falsehood. The first issue to be solved is whether or not Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. We believe the evidence shows he was not. The second issue is whether or not Jesus intended there to be a formal church and priesthood structure such as the Mormons have. I don't see that pattern in the Bible. I suggest you read Marvin Cowan's book Mormon Claims Answered on our web site.]
Nov. 14, 2002
Subject: The day grows long till eventide
I have a comment if you want it classified.
As time goes on you will see many terrible and frieghten things. The question of faith will be tested. I tell you today that the HEAT and FIRE you give us to seach our beliefs has never been strong enough. The evils you hate are more than enough and the insults you throw at believers of Christ, His prophets, and Apostles will not matter soon. IT IS COMING.
...If you read in the Book of Mormon Captain Moroni set places of security for his people to go. There are many places saints can go to be safe.
We fight you from there now and you can not harm us will all you slings and arrows. The end is here. If you continue to fight against the Church of Jesus Christ you will suffer the consequences of hurting his precious children. You know what he said about those that offend his little ones.
I raise a voice of warning to you. I will not be the first or last. When you hear the trump sound where will you be standing? On HOLY GROUND? It is up to you.
Nov. 14, 2002
Subject: Three Witnesses
I heard one of the original three witnesses to the Book of Mormon left the Mormon church and tried to start his own religious movement similar to Joseph Smith's. He supposedly received his own gold plates and was visited by angels. Is there any truth to this? If so, where is this be documented?
[Sandra's Note: I think you have a couple of different people mixed up. Many of the witnesses to the Book of Mormon left Mormonism in the late 1830's. Some went into different LDS splinter groups.
One such group was started by a Mormon named James J. Strang in 1844. He claimed to have found a sacred record known as 'The Book of the Law of the Lord' and published it as scripture. He also claimed visions. A book that explains the various LDS splinter groups is Divergent Paths of the Restoration by Shields.
We also have material on the three Book of Mormon witnesses, David Whitmer, Oliver Cowdery and Martin Harris, in our book The Case Against Mormonism, Vol. 2.]
Nov. 15, 2002
Thoroughly enjoyed latest Messenger. Survey shows good link to Temple Changes. Suggestion would be not to link a reference citation to a book sale. Would be nice to have the quote referenced....
Nov. 15, 2002
Subject: thank you.......
Thank you for the latest "Salt Lake City Messenger". I am always amused, and deeply saddened, by those who attack you. Members of the Mormon religion are happy to attack the Christian faith, but don't cope with those who reveal the truth that would make them free.
Here in the United Kingdom the Mormon religion also needs to be confronted by Christians who are instructed in this new religious movement, or cult. I am trying my best! May God bless you in your much needed ministry.
Nov. 15, 2002
Subject: Leaving the Church
I have moved several times between countries and they always find me. I have reviewed the procedure for removing my name from their records. How do I determine who the local bishop and stake president is without calling the local church?
[Sandra's Note: You can call the world-wide LDS membership office at 801-240-3500. They can give you all the information you need.]
Nov. 15, 2002
Subject: thanks to the Tanners
Years back I phoned and spoke to Sandra about a friend of mine who converted to Mormonism. She was polite and helpful although this fellow seemed to be pretty "brainwashed" by the time I spoke to him. I do appreciate your efforts and just today ordered a book from your web site.
By the way is Fawn Brodie still alive? Just curious, I really enjoyed her book "No Man Knows My History."
Anyway I have met quite a few existing Mormons and most of them are quite strongly held by their beliefs although I have been made aware of some who have been freed from it. Therefore I concluded that it is still possible for even some of them to be saved out of it. Again thanks for your efforts I do believe your labor is not in vain "in the Lord."
A fellow Christian and laborer,
[Sandra's Note: Thanks for the kind note. Fawn Brodie died in 1981 of cancer. She was a professor of history at UCLA for many years.]
Nov. 15, 2002
Subject: great work keep the mormons mad
It cracks me up to hear the hate mail you receive from all the faithful Mormons out there. I have been reading your Salt Lake messenger mailer for years and not once has a devout Mormon has ever had enough ammo to contradict your writings. All they say in their narrow minds. Is leave the state or quit bashing our beliefs and you are going to rot in Hell ...
Boy,,Thats the real Christian way..... All I believe in is the golden rule....nothing more. God said to belive in me and thats all..... Oh by the way I am a white very wealthy man and have a loving wife and children......... And you guys out there thought you had to be Mormon to have that........Pity on you MO's
Nov. 15, 2002
I just received your Salt Lake City Messenger booklet. Thanks, even though I don't agree with your views.
I have purchaced several items from it over the last few years. It has helped grow my faith in the LDS Church substancially. I am a convert of about 5 years. I was raised Baptist.
I like reading the terminology differences between LDS and non-LDS. You shouldn't say between LDS and Bible, because the Saints believe the Bible, and by doing so you falsly imply they don't. In reading these terminologies I always end up on the LDS side of the fence. I wish I could send you all my comments on these terminologies to show you where the confusion lies. And it is not with the Latter day Saints.
Every tree is known by its fruits, and there is no better fruit bearing tree on the earth than the Latter day Saints. Repent and join the Church. For everyone will be Damned except the Mormons. Because without baptism you will be damned. And only the Latter day Saints have proper authority to perform them. Therefore we need to perform baptisms for the dead, or non-Saints wouldn't have a chance. Therefore we will be your saviors, and you will owe us your lives in the spirit world. Because you need baptism in addition to the attonement of Christ. For without baptism the attonement of Christ is not applied to the remission of your sins. BYE!
Nov. 16, 2002
God Bless you all! I have a very small ministry that has been running for several years, witnessing to the Mormons and other cults here in Southern Oregon. I have received many fantastic resources from you.
Awhile back I gave a talk on the errors of Mormonism and some time later a woman approached me and said she had left Mormonism after my talk and had since started her own "outreach" to LDS women.
I know you get a lot of grief from LDS people, but be strengthened and be of good cheer!! I have, and always will, keep you in my prayers...To God be the glory.
Nov. 17, 2002
Unsubscribe me from your mailing list immediately. Your time spent hatefully criticizing other religious faiths is both morally wrong and proof that your organization is in no way Christian oriented. Why not use your time more constructively for the common good? Your work is only creating hatred.
Request submitted 17 November 2002,
Nov. 20, 2002
Subject Burning in the Bosom
Thanks for your ministry it has helped me a lot. There is one problem I have not seen dealt with though and perhaps you can help.
My 16 year old daughter has been reading the BOM, encouraged by her Mormon friends. Despite being raised a Christian she tells me she believes it is true because she prayed about it and received a "burning in her bosom" and a feeling of peaceful assurance that it is true and that the LDS church is true. I have talked with her and given her several things to read but I haven't been able to counter the "burning in the bosom" thing. Any suggestions?
Thanks again for your ministry.
[Sandra's Note: You need to point out that feelings can be wrong, many people around the world 'feel' that their faith is right. That is why Muslims, who are moral and pray regularly throughout each and every day, are willing to die for their beliefs. Converts to all religions feel a peace about their decision, but that does not insure that they have made the right choice. Jehovah's Witnesses have given me the same testimony. I have had the same experience as the Mormons, only in reverse. I prayed about the LDS Church and the Book of Mormon and God gave me a great peace that they were wrong and I should go back to the Bible for my instructions. The difference is that I studied the Bible and Mormonism first, compared the two, and then prayed. Prayer alone is not the way to determine truth (since our own desires and emotions can cloud the answer), whatever belief we are considering must agree with the Bible.
Has your daughter read the Doctrine and Covenants (especially sec. 132) and the Pearl of Great Price (especially Book of Abraham about plural godschap.4compare with Genesis)?
Mormonism isn't just about the Book of Mormon, that is just the first step. She must also believe their other books of scripture and in secret temple rituals. Also see How Do We Test a Prophet?]
Nov. 20, 2002
Where can I find all the names of the off shoots of the LDS church?
[Sandra's Note: In the book Divergent Paths of the Restoration.]
Nov. 21, 2002
Subject: Bill Hickman question
To Utah Lighthouse Ministeries
I was fascinated to read about the "destroying angel" Bill Hickman. What happened to him after the book? Did he testify before the court? Was he sentenced for his crimes? Did the Mormon Church leave him alone to die of natural causes?
[Sandra's Note: Hickman was excommunicated from the LDS Church in 1868 and his book, Brigham's Destroying Angel, was published in 1872. After his book was published he was rejected by both Mormons (for betraying the prophet) and non-Mormons (because he wasn't convicted of his past crimes). He and his family moved to Wyo where he died in 1883. This is explained in the book, Wild Bill Hickman and the Mormon Frontier.]
Nov. 21, 2002
Subject: Latest newsletter
You guys do a great job and I have enjoyed your newsletters for years. However, the issue concerning Joseph Smith's surgery was a little over the top in my opinion.
It's interesting to be sure, but using the trauma to explain his delusions and behavior is speculative at best. You have covered this fellow's life and legacy as well as anyone can, but no one will ever know his real motivations. It's all guesswork. He could have seen the Angel of Light, Lucifer himself, in the grove, but we aren't going to find out here.
I guess it's hard to gin up subject matter for each issue after all these years. Some of us aren't engaged in a ministry and the history gets repetitive and a little stale. Still, I think it's important that you continue to chronicle the scandals and history that would have been long forgotten.
Another issue that I think is overstated in some circles is the proposition that Smith's lynching was in reality a gunfight. I believe that the Church version of him going to the slaughter like a lamb is bogus to be sure, but it doesn't help to call the mob's descending on that rickety jail and Smith fighting back with a smuggled pistol a "gun fight." That's almost as ridiculous as the Mormon's version.
[Web-editor: See Messenger #99]
Nov. 22, 2002
I've been discussing Joseph Smith's prophecy concerning the building of the temple in Missouri with several LDS missionaries. The prophecy indicates that the building was to take place during the lifetime the generation alive at the time of the giving of the prophecy (1832). They concede that this prophecy was not fulfilled but they referred to section 124.49 ['...when I give a commandment to any of the sons of men to do a work unto my name, and...(they) cease not their diligence, and their enemies come upon them and hinder them from performing that work, behold, it behooveth me to require that work no more at the hands of those sons of men, but to accept of their offerings.'] and following of Doctrines & Covenants written in 1839. This section seems to say that because of the hindrance encountered that the prophecy would not be fulfilled.
I've read in your book "MormonismShadow or Reality?" that subsequent leader of the Church still believed that the prophecy would still be fulfilled but the aforementioned D&C section seems to give them an escape route. How would you respond to that argument?
[Sandra's Note: This argument would imply that wicked men are more powerful than God and they can alter His time table. The Bible shows that when God has decided on a course of action, man will not change the plan. When the appointed time came for Christ to be born and 'enemies' of God's work tried to intervene by killing all the Hebrew children under two years of age, God still worked it out. Joseph Smith's statements in Doc. & Cov. 124:49 is a convenient dodge to cover up Smith's failed prophecy. If God had wanted a temple built in Smith's generation He certainly would have been able to accomplish the goal.]
Nov. 22, 2002
Thanks for having the courage to say what you feel and expose information to people who want to hear truth! I am a former Mormon who is still on paper but has nothing to do with them for four years now.
Do you know of any support groups or people I can talk to that can help me with my severe spiritual confusion? I have suffered in every part of my life because of my spiritual instability...
[Sandra's Note: Thanks for writing. Sorry, don't know of any group in your area. You can contact some ex-Mormons on the internet through www.irr.org/mit or www.exmormon.org. You might also find the book Out of the Cults and Into the Church helpful.]
Nov. 22, 2002
I think your website is great. I recently was "invited" to talk with a family regarding their faith, and sat with them, their "pastor", and two elders. Very enlightening on their beliefs, and my children got to sit in on it. They too, were amazed at how deceived they are....
Keep up the good work. I've been getting your newsletters, and you have them pretty riled up, according to the correspondence they send. Keep preaching the Truth. The world needs it. God bless.
Nov. 22, 2002
Subject: spirit contact at temple
Dear Tanners, et. al.;
A rather non-religious acquaintance of mine told me the story of how she converted to Mormonism in order to marry a man she loved. During one of their visits to the Utah temple, she remembers walking down a long hallway lined with alcoves along each side. In many of these alcoves were small family groups talking to what appeared to her to be translucent ghosts. In some alcoves, the people were talking to something she couldn't see. She said that this was the moment she knew that Mormonism was wrong and that she had to get out.
I have since heard, on BYU TV, one of the Book of Mormon study members discuss seeing a recently deceased family member who been restored to a more healthy body. The discussion centered around how long it took to become whole after death.
Mormons don't talk about this much. What is this patently evil and non-biblical practice called? What do we know about it? How can I confront a Mormon about it?
Thanks for you help.
[Sandra's Note: Yes, the Mormons believe the dead can visit them. Mormons will often claim a deceased loved one appeared to them in the temple pleading with them to do their proxy temple work. In fact, there is a book that recounts many visits from the dead to LDS members titled, Spirit World Manifestations Accounts of Divine Aid in Genealogical and Temple and Other Assistance to Latter-day Saints, written by Joseph Heinerman, 1986. I don't know if it is still in print but it was sold at the LDS bookstore, Deseret Book, in the past.
Also, past LDS president Joseph Fielding Smith stated "...our fathers and mothers, brothers, sisters, and friends who have passed away from this earth, having been faithful,...may have a mission given them to visit their relatives and friends upon the earth again, bringing from the divine messages of love, of warning, or reproof and instruction to those whom they had learned to love in the flesh." (Gospel Doctrine, Vol.2, p. 224, published by the LDS Church, 1971)
However, the Bible condemns necromancy, or contact with the dead (see Deut. 18:9-13).]
Nov. 23, 2002
Dear Sandra Tanner
We were in Salt Lake in June and visited your ministry. You sent us home with tapes of Jerald's testimony in 3 parts and tapes of you with a TV Interview dated Feb 1984 and Problems in Winning Mormons & one done in June 1991 Christian Institute for Mormon Studies.
I want to first of all thank you. We have listened to them all and like your approach on how to witness to a Mormon better than other's have said to do. I like your suggestions to make a friend of a Mormon and show them love to win them. Shutting the door in their face only cement deeper the convictions given them by the Bishops that "Gentiles/Born Again Believers etc?" are apostate and deceived. It makes such sense to have this approach. I being an X Mormon have not always had a good witnessing method and I appreciate these tapes very much. Thank you.
I am currently making a fiend with a lady I met in a ...Support Group we both attend who introduced herself to me as a "Christian" but in a lunch we had here at my home, she mentioned her son had gone on a mission in Colorado (We are in Washington State) that statement was the first thing she said that tipped me off to her really being a LDS. We agreed to be friends even though she is a Mormon and she in turn accepted me even though I used to be a Mormon? It was sweet. I for the first time felt a genuine love for a Mormon, this is quite an accomplishment for me.
...Thank you again for your dedication to this work, and again we both enjoyed your tapes very much. ...I am sending mine to the friend in AK. She had two Mormon men come to the Radio station and ask if there was any volunteer work they could do. They do have a job and the men are on the schedule. I briefly told her of your tapes and she wants to hear them.
Thank you for your time,
Nov. 23, 2002
Subject: Prayer for son
I am a born again believer and we raised our son in the truth. He has recently got engaged to a Mormon girl. We are heart broken. I truly believe Ro. 8:28 and am trying to trust God through all of this. I pray daily for her salvation and that our son would have his eyes opened. He is refusing to hear the truth and apparently is adopting the idea that the scripture is corrupt. (very Mormon thought)
Please pray for us and them. My husband and i can not give our blessing to their marriage as well her parents will not give their blessing (could be a good thing as they will not have a temple wedding) Thank You Jesus. Right now I feel very alone and abandoned though God Word tells me differently.
Thank you for all the great info.
Nov. 23, 2002
Subject: LDS challenge from my LDS mom
My [LDS] mom asked me:
"please do not take this wrong; for us to stop reading the Book of Mormon would be denying Jesus Christ. If you have been reading in the Christian web sites referring to Revelations 22:18, read Deuteronomy 4:2. Does this mean the rest of the Old Testament is not valid? Might as well invalidate the New Testament!"
How should I respond?
[Sandra's Note: I do not use the verse in Rev. to prove that the NT was ended at that point. These verses show that when God has spoken (like when he gave the ten commandments or gave his revelation to John), no one has the right to change it. The verses have nothing to do with saying the canon of the Bible was closed at that point.
So the problem for the Mormon is why did Joseph Smith change his revelations in the Doctrine and Covenants, Book of Mormon and Pearl of Great Price? Mormons say the Bible has been changed so we can't trust it. But what about Smith's scriptures? He changed them. If God had truly spoken those scriptures, Smith had no right to change them.
Also, Smith made changes in the Bible when he did his revision. See the back of the official LDS printing of the KJV Bible, it contains extracts of Smith's Bible revisions.]
Nov. 23, 2002
Subject: Your mission
Hello, I was interested to look over your website. I am just wondering, if you are true followers of Jesus Christ and his true church, why don't you spend more time spreading his gosple and less time trying to tear down others of his followers? ...
Nov. 23, 2002
Subject: Historical Jesus
Can you direct me to your favorite book that gives support to a Historical Jesus. thanks
[Sandra's Note: See the book, Jesus Under Fire.]
Nov. 23, 2002
I appreciate that it can wear you down when there is a constant barrage of negativism from those you want most to help. You have chosen a difficult ministry, and for that I thank you. Your perseverance and availability to the call of God reaches so many you never get to hear about. Please continue in your faith and ministry. It is difficult but necessary work and I really appreciate having your resources with which to extend your ministry where we are. God bless you and thank you again.
Nov. 23, 2002
Sounds like you guys are really scared . . . .
Nov. 24, 2002
Subject: My experience
Jerald & Sandra,
I must say that I was truly touched when reading your testimony. I'm a 19-year old college student. I grew up Mormon and a little over a year ago accept Jesus as my Lord and Savior. My entire family is a part of the Mormon church, and I was raised going to LDS churches. My ancestors were part of the Martin Handcart company who settled in Utah with Brigham Young. But I, too, had questions. I stood up every month at testimony meeting and at every youth conference and said that I 'knew' I was a part of the only true church and that Joseph Smith was a true prophet, etc. It made my parents proud, so I did it. I did it without question.
But around the time I was 16, I wanted to explore other aspects of Christianity. I wanted to know what 'real Christians' believed and why it was so hush-hush around our house. And when my parents refused to let me attend another church, even once, I knew something was wrong. So, miserable as I was, I sat through early-morning seminary and those 3-hour Sunday services until it was time to move out and live on my own.
At the age of 18, I attended a Chi Alpha service on campus and was touched deeply. I was amazed by the humble and grateful attitudes of the staff. When we sang songs, they showed emotion. Instead of songs like 'Put your shoulder to the wheel, push along!' (let's face it, that's about as upbeat as LDS songs get) At Chi Alpha we sang songs that were honest, simple, and directly to the point: 'I want more of you, Jesus.' That night I gave my life to Christ and haven't looked back since.
In the past year I have grown spiritually like a rocket, rising up to leadership and watching people that I have poured my life into get saved. I feel there is an anointing on my life, and I can't express how grateful I am to God for pulling me out of the deception I was sucked into. Until these past few days, I haven't felt comfortable facing the Mormon part of myself. I know deep down there are still unanswered questions as to exactly WHY Mormonism is wrong. I wanted to be strong in my faith before I sat down and picked apart the doctrine and answered those little nagging questions.
So when I read your testimony, it was exactly what I needed to hear. Your experiences were very similar to mine and I don't feel so alone in the world. I just wanted to thank you for pouring your lives into exposing the truth about such a misinterpreted religion. As I study the Mormon faith, I will refer to your books and publications with trust and knowledge that God is speaking through you. So THANK YOU!!!
Nov. 25, 2002
Your web site is full of inaccuracies and lies. If you think you have to dispute the Book of Mormon at least get your facts right.
Nov. 25, 2002
Subject: Study for yourself
I use to visit my friend's Mormon church and I myself was almost deceived. When you first visit the church it seems so "Christian" and there is nothing unbiblical about it.
I wanted to know why everybody from my synagogue told me to ask myself if this is the teaching of Yeshua (Jesus' Hebrew name) or was it made by man. So I did my own research and found that the Mormon church has very little or anything at all to do with the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob's teachings.
For all of you Mormons reading this please forget your initial reaction to scorn what your church doesn't teach. Instead use your Bible (God's very own word) and study for yourself- use as many versions of the Bible as possible. If your doctrine and teachings go along with the Bible then rest assured that your in the true church, but if it is different I hope you can find shalom with what you decide to do.
Nov. 25, 2002
How are you doing? I was raised in the Methodist Church, and I still go there, so I never had any experience with the Mormon Church until I met my wife. Her entire family is mormon, with the exception of her mother, father, sister, brother, and of course my wife. Her grandmother, uncles, aunts, nieces, etc.. are all mormon.
Needless to say, I wanted to find out what this religion is all about and what I have found out about it really kind of scares me. It scares me that people could actually be gullible enough to believe in a religion that has no basis in fact. Anyway, I am just wanting to say that you guys are doing a great job and I am wanting to subscribe to your newsletter, ... Is it possible that the Mormon people have the letters LDS mixed up? From what I have read about the religion, the letters should be LSD. To create something like this, Joseph Smith had to be taking acid.
Nov. 26, 2002
You have alleged many inconsistancies, but never have you expressed that you have actually read the most correct book on the face of earth. You have never knelt in humble adoration of our Heavenly Father asking him with a sincere desire to know of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon. Your attempt is futile to those who have the fortitude to believe that theyre Father in Heaven loves them, and answers prayers. "wo unto them who believe kwoledge is wisdom.
[Sandra's Note: Jerald and I, who were both raised as Mormons, read the Book of Mormon many times and spent considerable time in prayer over it. We believe God answered those prayers and led us to the information that shows the book is not history, but was written in the 1820's.]
Nov. 26, 2002
...There's a Mormon church here in ...NC. One of our neighbors, although Christians, were swept up in the Y2K thing (all the stockpiling, etc..) and they were going to the Mormon church for meetings on how to stockpile. How does this fit into the Mormon teachings? I read most of the books I ordered from you but none of this preparing for an armegeddon(sp?).
[Sandra's Note: Mormons don't talk about this as much now as they did twenty years ago. But the LDS Church has for years taught it's members to stockpile a year's supply of food, water, and household needs to carry them through the end times. However, in today's world it is very difficult to 1) Store that much food and water and 2) Rotate that amount of food (wheat, etc) in order to keep it from spoiling or getting bugs. I personally know many friends and relatives who stored barrels of wheat, etc, only to have it go bad. Today the church is more temperate in its teaching, suggesting a 3-4 month supply. At the October 2002 LDS conference, Pres. Hinkley advised starting with "a one week's food supply and gradually build it to a month, and then to three months." (Ensign, Nov. 2002, p.58)]
Nov. 26, 2002
I am a former bishop, high councilman (3 different high councils), Stake YM President, Ward Mission Leader and every other position on the little career ladder that Mormon men aspire to. Incidentally I was ordained to be a high priest at the age of 22 and served on the high council for the first time at that time (two years after my wife and I converted to the church).
Here is the topper! I am a former Released-Time Seminary Principal and Institute faculty member and Director. I had just been appointed as the Institute Director of the ...Institute, adjacent to .... State University when I left the Church Education System and the church on the same day.
I hold a Masters Degree in Counseling Psychology and a Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration. But I just couldn't take it anymore.
This may be more than you want to hear, but at the risk of burying you in unsolicited details, I'll tell you a little more. My wife and I had been trying to find another job so I could leave for years. I could find nothing that even approached my salary from CES (about $62,500 base salary, plus $10,000 for an additional summer employment contract, totaling about $72,500).
But this summer, our bishop and stake president decided that we were not contributing enough and ordered us to bring in our paycheck stubs to let them calculate the amount of tithing we should pay. In addition for good measure, they ordered us to make sure that we obtained contact information when visiting my parents who live out of town, so my bishop could check up on us to insure that we were attending church when out of town.
I had had many other experiences before that made the church seem like a bunch of Nazis who insisted on controlling every aspect of our lives, but that was the last straw. My lovely wife Teresa and I decided to quit, whether we had a job or not. I was resigned to doing janitorial work if I had to, because jobs for a highly educated, but narrowly trained (geek?) teacher were so scarce.
Though there are two universities and one college within 35 miles, I couldn't find a job even as a night supervisor at the recreation center, let alone anything else I felt qualified for. We quit anyway and it was the absolute best thing we've ever done. The president of the small college 35 miles away called me while I was packing my things in my Institute Director's office and offered me the position of Interim Director of Grants and Contracts. I took it and I couldn't be happier though the learning curve has been steep and the salary is $32,000 less a year. We are doing wonderfully.
I am so sorry to go on so long. I could write so much more. I just wanted to thank you for your website. I would love to receive any free literature you have to send with booklists. I am grateful that you have remained steadfast though you have suffered all kinds of intimidation, lawsuits, insults, and condemnation. For years I have enjoyed your literature. Thanks again, and I look forward to receiving whatever it is that you send folks like me.
Nov. 28, 2002
Subject: Mr & Mrs. Tanner, I'm a graduate student at the Yale School of Drama
...I have been acquainted with the Mark Hoffman story for a few years now and ...your book, 'Tracking the White Salamander'...I think it's a fascinating story and I appreciated your version amongst the many available sources available. ...
Nov. 28, 2002
Were you aware that the LDS Church are members of 'The World Council of Churches' ? It seems they are eventually going to merge with all these Churches in a one world religion. Already they are dropping the Doctrine that God was once as we are. Gordon B Hinckleys /Larry King show showed this.
It took from August 7th until November 29th 2002 to get my name removed from the LDS Records, I told them that I would take the matter to law if they did not comply, I was a member for 36 years, then I found out that the Illuminati ran the church.
Nov. 29, 2002
Hello and Happy Holidays to you.
I quick question. I thought I heard or read recently that scientists using DNA testing methods have determined that early inhabitants of southern Mexico and Central America, at the alleged time of the events of the Book of Mormon, were not of Jewish ancestry or origin as claimed in B/M. Do you have any information on this? Please reply as soon as possible.
[Sandra's Note: Yes, read the new book, American Apocrypha.
It contains a chapter by Prof. Thomas W. Murphy, Dept. of Anthropology at Edmonds Community College in Washington, titled "Lamanite Genesis, Genealogy, and Genetics" which deals with DNA. Mr. Murphy has been in the news due to LDS Church threats of censorship as a result of his writings.]
Nov. 30, 2002
I have studied your website carefully:
(a) It would be germane to include WHY you have this website - your personal history with Mormonism, and why you fell away. It would alleviate any suspicion of ulterior motives you may have, and offer the reader a glimpse into your methodology. The underlying reason.
(b) After looking over your arguments and studying them carefully, I find the majority of them (not all, mind you) to be either moot, that is to say irrelevant, or simply not thought out enough, not reasoned arguments.
The simple may be swayed by a surface debate, but those with a background in argumentation (read Cicero) will not be convinced. Your thinking is shallow, and unconvincing even to the non-LDS. Surely one can put forth a better submission, especially if what you say is accurate!
Perhaps the Church has grown in spite of your efforts simply because 'It' out-thinks you; the simplicity of argument has it's own merit, you know. I will check in from time-to-time to peruse your website and see what makes sense. By the way, I met Sandra once and I consider her to be a very nice lady. Very kind indeed.
Thank you for your time.