Are you Elders familiar with the Gospel Topics Essays produced by the LDS Church?
Of course, they are found on lds.org.
Have you read them?
Honestly, I haven’t read any of them yet.
I’ve read a couple.
It would seem important for you as missionaries to know what each of those essays had to say on the various gospel topics.
What specific topics do they cover?
Let’s look at them on the Church’s website: lds.org > search > Gospel Topics Essays. There are eleven of them. And they are listed in alphabetical order:
Are Mormons Christian?
Becoming like God
Book of Mormon and DNA Studies
Book of Mormon Translation
First Vision Accounts
Joseph Smith’s Teachings about Priesthood, Temple, and Women
Mother in Heaven
Peace and Violence among 19th-Century Latter-day Saints
Race and the Priesthood
Translation and Historicity of the Book of Abraham
When did the Church produce these essays?
Didn’t they begin publishing them in 2013 and through 2015. It was in response to what members were finding on the internet about the history, doctrine, and practices of the Church.
Because the First Presidency was concerned that much of the information was coming from questionable and unreliable sources, they commissioned these essays to be written and made available on the Church’s own official website.
So, did our Prophet or Apostles write them?
I highly doubt it! Probably written by LDS scholars. Perhaps from the Religion Department at Brigham Young University.
I think the reason the church came out with the essays at that time was because convert rates in the LDS Church had been declining greatly while a steady stream of members are leaving the faith.
I’m not sure these essays are designed to restore people’s faith as much as they are designed to lessen future disaffections.
With so much information readily available on the internet, the church can no longer hide its history and hopes to do damage control by reconciling the facts with what has been taught by church leaders in the past.
So Chris obviously you have been reading these essays?
I have, and I would like to review some of them with you. Perhaps next time we could discuss the essay titled – Mother in Heaven.
Cause if I have a mother in heaven, I should probably know something about her. Don’t you think?