Thursday, February 25, 2010

The facts about Proposition 8 and declaration of funds used by the LDS church

Over 1 year ago on 2 February 2009, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints clarified erroneous news reports following the filing of its final report on donations to the coalition.

On Friday, 30 January, the Church filed the final report of its contributions (all of which were non-monetary) to the coalition. The report, submitted in advance of the 31 January deadline, details in-kind donations totaling $189,903.58.

The value of the Church’s in-kind (non-monetary) contribution is less than one half of one percent of the total funds (approximately $40 million) raised for the “Yes on 8” campaign. The Church did not make any cash contribution.

Because media coverage about this filing ran without a comment from the Church, the following statements of fact from the Church add context to this story and should help correct the record:

Fox13 (Utah): “The documents show the amount spent by the Mormon Church is greater than what was initially stated.”

Fact: The Church, like other organizations on both sides of the ballot issue, was required to publicly file these donations by the 31 January deadline. The Church has been filing required contribution reports throughout the campaign. Those earlier donations “initially stated” were filed for specific time periods prior to this last reporting period, as required by law. Other groups are also filing their final contribution reports to meet the same deadline.

San Francisco Chronicle : “Mormon church officials, facing an ongoing investigation by the state Fair Political Practices Commission, Friday reported nearly $190,000 in previously unlisted assistance to the successful campaign for Prop. 8, which banned same-sex marriage in California.”

Sacramento Bee : “The disclosure comes amid an investigation by the state's campaign watchdog agency into whether the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints violated state laws by not fully disclosing its involvement during the campaign.”

Fact: This filing is in no way prompted by an investigation by the California Fair Political Practices Commission. Many organizations are filing this week to meet the deadline required by law. We believe we have complied with California law.

KFMB 760 AM (San Diego) :

“Mormon Church Misstated How Much It Spent in Prop 8 Fight.”
“The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints previously claimed only about $2,000 was spent in support of the measure.”
365Ga y : “Mormon Church admits it spent 100 times more for Prop 8 than reported”

Fact: Again, the previous disclosure of an in-kind donation was to meet an earlier deadline. In fact, previous filings detailed over $50,000 out of the total non-monetary contribution of $189,903.58.This week’s filing reported donations that fell within a different time period and required reporting by the 31 January deadline. Other groups also made their final contributions reports this week.

Understanding the extent of donations from other organizations may help the media and the public better understand the context in which the Church’s donations were made.

Apparently good news travels slowly.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Joseph Smith from a "Mason's" Perspective

"In matters of religion and matrimony I never give any advice; because I will not have anybody’s torments in this world or the next laid to my charge." Lord Chesterfield(1694–1773), English statesman, man of letters. Letter, 12 Oct. 1765
(published in Lord Chesterfield’s Letters to His Godson, no. 73, Appendix, ed. by Earl of Carnarvon, 1890).

Those who fall into the category of 'Religious Intolerant' seem to have significant problems with the Mormon faith and its adherents. Whether by trickery or force, they make strong efforts to convert Mormons to their particular brand of salvation, generally attempting to defame the Mormon Church in any way possible. Many of those who are anti-Mormon are also, interestingly, anti-Mason as well despite the fact that one is a religion and the other, a fraternity. It's also curious that several of the most outspoken anti-Masons of today are also the most outspoken anti-Mormons.

Mormon founder, Joseph SmithA brief history: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, sometimes seen abbreviated as LDS, was organized by Joseph Smith after he experienced a series of visions from 1826 to 1830 that called him to restore true Christianity. Smith translated the Book of Mormon from gold plates that he said the angel Moroni revealed to him. His new religion drew converts rapidly but they were severely prosecuted by outsiders. They fled from New York to Ohio and Illinois where a mob, suspicious of the economic and political power of the Mormons as well as the Mormon practice of polygamy (having more than one wife), killed Smith and his brother Hyrum in Carthage, Illinois in 1844.

Much is made, primarily by 'religious intolerants', of supposed similarities between certain religious rites of Mormons and the ceremonies of Freemasonry. Conveniently overlooked is the fact that such similarities exist in many other institutions also. Freemasonry, as the oldest fraternity in the world, certainly had its ceremonies and forms copied either consciously or unconsciously throughout the past three centuries. Likewise, its forms and ceremonies did not arrive 'fully-formed' and have elements from institutions, beliefs, and societies well before their own existence. Whether any of this 'proves' that Joseph Smith was not a Prophet or that Mormonism is a false religion is specious at best and is irrelevant to the discussion from a Masonic perspective.

There is both a past and a present when discussions relative to Freemasonry and Mormonism occur. We'll begin with the past:

Freemasonry became acquainted with the Latter Day Saints at Nauvoo, Illinois in the 2½ years between March, 1842 and October, 1844. Although Freemasonry had been in Illinois since 1805, it's presence there was tenuous and a Grand Lodge formed in 1823 expired very shortly thereafter due to (according to Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia) poor administration. It was not until 1840 that another Grand Lodge was formed but it too met great difficulties, being soon after the Morgan Affair and encountering some jurisdictional disputes over lodges chartered by Missouri.

Joseph Smith had been expelled from Missouri as well and in 1839, settled in Commerce, soon renamed Nauvoo. The population of that location increased from almost nothing to somewhere between 8,000-10,000 souls. In another three years, it was the largest city in Illinois and second only to St. Louis in the whole Northwest. In 1841, Bodley Lodge at Quincy was asked to approve a body of petitioners for a charter at Nauvoo but refused. (There was at this time in many areas a requirement that a new lodge forming in the 'territory' of an established lodge ask permission to do so.) Later in the same year, Grand Master Jonas issued a dispensation and personally instituted the lodge at Nauvoo on March 15, 1842. Some Masonic scholars have indicated that Jonas might have done this for his own personal motives.

In any event, Joseph Smith was initiated the day the lodge was instituted and became a Master Mason the next. Bodley Lodge subsequently charged that the Grand Master had violated Masonic Law in the handling of certain matters surrounding this and on August 11, 1842, the Grand Master suspended the dispensation which had allowed the Lodge at Nauvoo to work.

In a period of less than 6 months, in excess of 250 Masons had been created - an extraordinary number for ANY lodge anywhere at any time. Additional lodges related to that at Nauvoo were 'springing up' in the area without following proper Masonic protocol and there were investigations into the Grand Master's conduct by the Grand Lodge which ordered that the spurious lodges be closed. Those orders were disobeyed and at the Grand Lodge communication of 1844, all Mormon lodges were declared clandestine and all their membership suspended. Coil's Masonic Encyclopedia says:

"These lodges might have continued as clandestine bodies had not the Mormons got into other difficulties. In 1844, a revolt which had been smoldering in the Mormon church broke out, resulting in considerable violence and in the flight of both Joseph and Hyrum Smith. In a few days, the Smiths returned, submitted to arrest and were jailed at Carthage, Ill., where on the afternoon of June 27, 1844, they were lynched and murdered by a mob."

(Masonicinfo Note: Historical accounts indicate that actual death occurred by shooting although apparently lynching was the original intent....)

Myth and legend claims that Joseph Smith used a uniquely Masonic 'signal' to garner assistance from the Masons at the time of his death. These reports persist to this day but were unsubstantiated at the time and remain so now. Additionally, there were conflicting statements from those closest to him physically when his murder occurred. What really happened is obscured by the frenzy of the mob activity, the motivations of the person recounting the story, and the passage of time.

Thereafter, the Mormons made their long and arduous trek across the barren plains and desert, seeking asylum. Brigham Young succeeded to the presidency of the Mormon Church and in the Great Salt Lake Valley, he set his exiled people to work with order and industry, building what was probably the first large-scale system of irrigation in the West.

Because, however, of the stigma of the events in Illinois as well as the moral outrage felt by Masons over the issue of polygamy which the Mormons were then practicing, Grand Lodges in both Nevada and Utah banned Mormons from Masonic membership en masse for several decades thereafter.

Salt Lake City TempleToday, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints are free to become Masons and vice-versa without any hindrance whatsoever. A common 'threat' made by some religious intolerants is that Mormons are not able to advance in their Church or its rites if they are known to be Masons. Many Masons who are of that faith will readily attest to the fallacy of this statement.

Regardless of whether there exist similarities between certain Mormon Temple Rituals and Freemasonry (or with anything else for that matter), it is not a concern of Freemasonry. Using this argument against Freemasonry is but another 'red herring' employed by those who seek to defame the fraternity and divert the discourse. Persons with common sense realize that what the members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints or any other religious body does or does not do has no effect whatsoever on the functioning of a totally separate and different organization.

Masonicinfo Note: The material above has been necessarily brief. It has been prepared for those who might have heard of some 'link' between the LDS and Freemasonry and were curious. It does not attempt to describe the entire history of Mormonism nor the entire history of Freemasonry during that period but instead is intended as a capsule summary, fairly (we hope) presenting events and circumstances. We trust you have found it unbiased and interesting.

As a Mormon and Master Mason, I can say you have done a fine job with this presentation. It's about time people quit being hysterical about both organizations. The one thing.... THE **ONE*** thing, first and foremost amongst Masons is the building up of good men, helping them become better men. That, above all else, is the serious motto of Masonry. "TheBackyardProfessor"

"What the critics blithely ignore are the many instances when God's appointed prophets used tools to accomplish their work: Moses using his staff to divide the Red Sea, Moses hitting the rock with his staff to bring forth water, Aaron's rod, etc., even Jesus used a mud plaster to heal a blind man's eyes. It's pretty obvious to me that God does allow the use of tools in his works. Then again, many of our critics are allergic to the idea of works having anything to do with salvation, so why would anybody need tools. Of course, I've noticed also from my work in apologetics, amateur though I be, that some of the critics blithely skip over the Old Testament, feeling that it isn't as relevant as the New Testament, especially the writings of Paul. I guess that might be one reason they feel the Book of Mormon isn't relevant, either.

Well, anyway, great video. Keep up the good work! And now you know where I'm coming from, too. :)" Youtube User; Arklyn

Find out what Masons think about Joseph Smith or the Mormons go to

The Official Website for FreeMasonry
For an article about Joseph Smith and his involvement with the freemason's,

click this link;
For questions about "Temple Symbolism" visit

The official website of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or the Mormon Church, visit or

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Only a witness of the spirit can overcome the Father of All Lies

2 Nephi 2:27
"Wherefore, men are free according to the flesh; and all things are given them which are expedient unto man. And they are free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil; for he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself."

Satan = the Adversary of all righteousness and the father of all lies... According to this great plan of Happiness, our Father in heaven has allowed Satan, our common enemy, to provide opposition in all things to prove us now herewith that we will yet choose God and that plan and do so for ourselves. This isn't Mormon Apologetics... it's just how things are. God has afforded us a chance to choose him but there is someone also in the mix who is trying to persuade us to follow him and his plan of misery.

One of the things you'll have to come to terms with is that if there be a God, then there is also a Devil and that there is an opposition in all things. We learn more about Satan from the Book of Mormon... if you think the previous verses or this is one whit behind your idea of the devil or how he behaves, you're welcome to tell me why.

Moroni 7:17

"But whatsoever thing persuadeth men to do evil, and believe not in Christ, and deny him, and serve not God, then ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of the devil; for after this manner doth the devil work, for he persuadeth no man to do good, no, not one; neither do his angels; neither do they who subject themselves unto him."

Part of you... the part that makes use of deductive reasoning happen must also include Satan in this equation that you say is difficult to add up and begin asking yourself questions such as...

Is Satan miserable forever? Why would he be miserable? Would he endeavor to take the rest of us down with him if he could? If one encounters the true church of God, would there be opposition against it or not?

Would Satan do all that was within his power to fight against God creating all manner of lies and deceit to keep people from finding it? If your answer is "Yes" to all of these questions, then there should be at least some doubt in the information you've hereto received. I don't care of Joseph Smith was a "boy scout" ... Satan would try to exploit his involvement with the Boy Scouts to promote his hatred against God. That is what he does. Satan is the great deceiver. He desires that NO man or woman may have the joy that this gospel brings to me and my family.

The only way you'll be able to settle all matters is ask of God.

James 1:5-6

If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.

This is what Joseph Smith did. He took one of his questions to the Lord and had no doubt in the response. Whether this is something you remember or not, this is how it all got started. Since then, Joseph Smith received his answer via the brilliant vision of God the father and his son Jesus Christ. Because of this and the subsequent experiences afterwards, Joseph Smith was called to be a prophet of God. There is not one prophet throughout all recorded events or times that have been popular in the eyes of men. Brother Joe has become a disturber and annoyer of Satan's dominion.

Would Satan be pissed off about that? That's a 100% YES!

So just ponder that. You tell me that certain things don't add up.
Could Satan be inserting his input into the equation or not?
I guarantee that he doesn't want you to add 1+1 to get 2.

What I'll do for you, since you seem to have one opinion on certain symbolism occurrences on the temples is let me share with you the symbols in question. I assure you that the description you have received up until this point about these symbols are nothing less stigmatized than the Hindu symbol of the Swastika...

Though once commonly used all over much of the world without stigma, because of its iconic usage in Nazi Germany the symbol has become stigmatized in the Western world, notably even outlawed in Germany. The same thing could be said about the "Southern Cross." and other symbols of our day. It's not difficult for anyone to hijack the meanings of certain symbols, package it up and sell their bill of goods and use the "Fear of the unknown" to fuel their fire.

Go here and see for yourself on what we proclaim are the meanings of certain symbols.

It shouldn't be difficult to take this in objectively but after wards, I encourage you to pray. Pray to that same God that Joseph did and ask him in faith regarding these things. Perhaps the Lord will help you set in order the things that seem out of place. Perhaps through your prayers, you will be able to discover where Satan has been part of the mix. After putting your faith in God, you will see that you can sort out any problems with the validity of Joseph Smith's claims and other things which you mentioned in your email to me;

Your words...

The Masonic link appears to similar to be coincidence, the racist stance that appears to change to suit the change in world or American viewpoint. According to many reports the masonic Smith family were practioners of necromancy & other wiccan practices. Smiths 'prophecies' that did not come to pass, the polygamy proofs of Smith, the Kabbalah belief system similarities & mystery schools drama ceremonies, No archeological proof of the ancient Mormon peoples & the book of Abraham being an Egyptian religion papyrus.

Temples and Symbolism

The answer to this is there is answers to all of these concerns.
Answers that explain the man made interpretations of our symbols, a definition of symbols on temples has already been clearly defined.

His affiliation with the masonic order.

Masons believe in building themselves into better men & better fathers and they do so in a "Non Denomination" and if I were not member of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I would seek after these kinds of experiences as should all men.

Regarding him being a practitioner of necromancy or wiccan practices?

Seriously, this is just reaching by the opponents of the church. The priesthood of God is the power to heal under the direction of the Holy Spirit. Jesus Christ would also heal the sick and was repeatedly accused of serving the Devil. The accusation of Joseph Smtih performing those healings via the power of the Holy Ghost is no whit behind such an accusation against the Savior but now it's just said of Necromancy or Witch Craft.

Plural Marriage/ Polygamy-Polyandry

We do not deny that the practice of plural marriage was taught and practiced by Joseph Smith and many other church leaders but we do put down the assessment made by those who would suggest the worst about this practice. It was a commandment from the Lord. It was lived in honor and obedience to God despite the persecutions that happened before and after wards. There are reasons why certain things were lived in secret and they are just as telling as to the reasons it was lived at all. The Lord commanded that it should be so and the bretheren did all that they could to be faithful in it not withstanding the persecution they had to live under.
More on this practice is located at this link;

What about the Kabbalah?

I don't know what to say about Kabbalah. That's a new thought entirely. It seems that the enemies of the church won't concede on all the other things so now they've come up with this? How similar are we to Kabbalah? Since I don't know much about that form of worship, I really don't have much to say except visit their website as I did. If you want to study all other religions and try to compare them, by all means do so. I'm sure they've got nothing to hide just like we do not as well.
Kabbalah is probably just as mis-understood as the LDS church so on this wise, I suppose we could be compared to them.

Masons... Kabbalah... Mormonism... these are all compared together because people like to put a face to the name of their "fears of the unknown" and it makes it easier for some to not really put much thought or study into these things to gain an actual knowledge of them. They'll sooner read someone else's assessment of these organization with something quick and easy just like "Instant Coffee." They want answers and they want them now. The most pleasing explanation will do so long as it's quick. Nothing truly studied can be studied quickly and one's sources ought to be

And the fact is there have surfaced scores of proofs and evidence to the support of the Book of Mormon as well as the authenticity of the Book of Abraham... one should only find those things and discover for themselves. It's no less a game of "Guess Who" when Satan places his hands over our eyes. All we but should do is say, "We know who you are, Satan... so take a hike." for him to let loose of our eyes and allow us to see these things versus allow him to whisper whatever he wants to with his hands cupped across our eyes.

All of these things are dead issues now and have been answered long ago but that won't stop Satan from perpetuating the lies and trying them out with new people. His earnest diligence in the work that he does will never let him concede a victory. He never sleeps. His thoughts, will and actions represent a desire to do evil continually and cause that all men might do the same.

It is my prayer that you will seek that witness of the spirit and refrain from putting your trust in the arm of flesh, setting aside all things that have influenced you up till this point and allow God chance to influence you now. Take the things in which I share with you and make an attempt to pray over them. Even if it be at first a simple prayer to know that God is there and that he is mindful of you, the finding out of this could not be counted for evil. Perhaps God will nudge you to continue learning about the church of his son, Jesus Christ and that you will discover the same joy that I have finding out these answers already for myself.

Warm Regards,
Josh Nelson

Saturday, February 20, 2010

The Dispensation of the Fullness of Times

Angels are coming to visit the earth... the Lord is preparing to return for the 1,000 years of peace during this millennium that has been awaited and hoped for now going on 6 Millennium. The Fullness of the everlasting gospel is now being taught upon the earth and the fullness of the Gentiles is blossom as a flower on a tender new plant. Truly, the marvelous work and a wonder has already begun to come forth for decades now in preparation for the Second Coming of Jesus Christ!

The everlasting Gospel has been brought back as promised
(Revelations 14:6-7)and it came in the form of an ancient record un-touched by human hands for nearly one and a half Millenniums of time to reach our eyes and ears in these final days. Just as "Stones and Arrows" were slung at the Lord's servant Samuel, so it will be that men shall symbolically throw stones and arrows at the Book of Mormon and none shall touch it. It will stand as a witness for righteousness and as a witness against wickedness and will testify against those who would not believe in the words which were written by true prophets of our father in heaven... and like Samuel, it will be an instrument in the hands of the Lord until such time that the Lord see's fit to withdraw his word from among the people. And in the latter-days, the gospel will be removed in like manner from the Gentiles, who will reject this restored gospel as a whole and it will once again be given unto the Jews; remnants of the house of Jacob and it will be taught to them so that they too will believe that Jesus is and WAS the promised Messiah since the foundation of the earth.

"Thus saith the Lord God, Behold, I will lift up mine hand to the Gentiles, and set up my standard to the people: and they shall bring thy sons in their arms, and thy daughters shall be carried upon their shoulders. And kings shall be thy nursing fathers, and their queens thy nursing mothers: they shall bow down to thee with their face toward the earth, and lick up the dust of thy feet; and thou shalt know that I am the Lord: for they shall not be ashamed that wait for me."
Isaiah 49:22-23

It is my belief that Samuel, the Lamanite, showed us the manner in which this record, The Book of Mormon, would be received by the world.

Helaman 16:2-7
2 But as many as there were who did not believe in the words of Samuel were angry with him; and they cast stones at him upon the wall, and also many shot arrows at him as he stood upon the wall; but the Spirit of the Lord was with him, insomuch that they could not hit him with their stones neither with their arrows.
3 Now when they saw that they could not hit him, there were many more who did believe on his words, insomuch that they went away unto Nephi to be baptized.
4 For behold, Nephi was baptizing, and prophesying, and preaching, crying repentance unto the people, showing signs and wonders, working miracles among the people, that they might know that the Christ must shortly come—
5 Telling them of things which must shortly come, that they might know and remember at the time of their coming that they had been made known unto them beforehand, to the intent that they might believe; therefore as many as believed on the words of Samuel went forth unto him to be baptized, for they came repenting and confessing their sins.
6 But the more part of them did not believe in the words of Samuel; therefore when they saw that they could not hit him with their stones and their arrows, they cried unto their captains, saying: Take this fellow and bind him, for behold he hath a devil; and because of the power of the devil which is in him we cannot hit him with our stones and our arrows; therefore take him and bind him, and away with him.
7 And as they went forth to lay their hands on him, behold, he did cast himself down from the wall, and did flee out of their lands, yea, even unto his own country, and began to preach and to prophesy among his own people.

I believe this to be an Allegory for our day. As in verse 2, we learn that stones and arrows could not slay Samuel... in like manner, the Book of Mormon has had its share of Stones or Arrows flung at it and in NO way has anything been able to hit it. As much as they try, it will JUST NOT happen. There were they who were converted unto the Lord and went seeking Nephi... and they were baptized. In our day, there would also be many who would seek after baptism as they discover the testimony of this record to be true...

But in the end, the people became wroth with Samuel and seeked to destroy his life but in that moment, Samuel departed... and in verse 7, we learn that Samuel went to preach among his own people. Likewise, in modern revelation, we learn that the gospel will be removed from all other nations in preparation to bring this message to the tribe of Judah as the Gentile nations will reject the gospel, as a whole, and it will be removed from among them.

Friday, February 12, 2010

What If?

What if Men ceased relying on their own understanding and turned their trust towards God above trusting in the arm of flesh?
2 Nephi 4:34

What if Men starting reading the scriptures as if they were not just words on paper reading them with real intent while praying to the Lord for understanding and having faith that God would give unto them the "gift of prophecy" and of "revelation?"
Moroni 10:3-5

What if Men ceased to read them and interpret them privately using their own wisdom?
2 Peter 1:19-21

What if men began to have unshakable faith in the Lord that he could understand all things and all points of truth free from the opinions of others?
Mormon 8: 24

What if men could be found humble enough for the Lord to show them all things?
Ether 4: 1, 8, 13

What if when the Lord were to show them all things that these men would actually dedicate their life to God following him with exceeding faith and not just KNOWING the path but were willing to walk the path doing all the Lord's commandments?

1 Nephi 3:7

What if men had the faith to refute the godless; the greatest of those who subject themselves to the will and power of the Devil?

Jacob 7: 5

What if men such faith that it gave them power to move mountains?

Ether 12: 30

What would it do to Satan's dominion if we were all like unto Captain Moroni?
Alma 48: 17

What if those who fight against this restored church are also fighting against God?
Acts 5:39

What if they fight against Zion under the guise of fighting for God?
Isaiah 29:8

What if the Book of Mormon is true and the subsequent restoration of the Gospel that Jesus Christ had taught was now being taught in its fullness and purity? "
I told the brethren that the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book.
Joseph Smith, Jr.

The question you need to ask yourself is, "What if?"

What if I'm missing out in the Lord's blessings because of my unbelief? What if Angels are returning to the earth visiting others and not me? What if this Christ I believe in is coming back to a people more prepared than I? What if all the things that are spoken against the church is influenced by Satan? What if there was an Apostasy and I'm on the wrong end of it? What if there are prophets today and I am rejecting them because of my own lack of understanding regarding warnings given by Jesus Christ about future prophets? What if I deny the miracles of God based on my own unbelief because I think that visions and miracles and healings and the visitation of Angels ceased long ago? What if families can be together forever and I'm steering clear from this? What if it's not about Mormonism but its about the restored Church of Jesus Christ? What if this church has been reestablished in the same way it was anciently? What if authority to perform such sacred saving ordinances like baptism has been made available once again? What if I leave life without receiving this sacred ordinance? What if I can just never see myself becoming Mormon? What if I never find the strength to quit smoking, drinking, pornography, or any other vices non-conducive to the spirit of God? What if I remain just a casual follower of Christ obeying some commandments while submitting to other weaknesses... will that be enough? Last but not least... What if I disqualify myself from eternal blessings because I would rather hear the opinions of men never giving thought to ask God for myself if these blessings have truly come to men on earth through his marvelous work and a wonder? (Isaiah 29:11-14)

We all have to make a choice in this life and it will be based on our actions.
"Wherefore, men are free according to the flesh; and all things are given them which are expedient unto man. And they are free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil; for he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself.
...And not choose eternal death, according to the will of the flesh and the evil which is therein, which giveth the spirit of the devil power to captivate, to bring you down to hell, that he may reign over you in his own kingdom.
(2 Nephi 2:27, 29)

The Lord has commanded that his people be perfect. (Matt 5:48) He has made it abundantly clear that he will not support a slothful and unwise servant as mentioned in the "Parable of the Talents." He will not recognize those who have not had a proper baptism for there will be many which say, "Lord Lord" but will not enter in.

Do what Moroni suggests...
"...Come unto Christ, and be perfected in him, and deny yourselves of all ungodliness; and if ye shall deny yourselves of all ungodliness, and love God with all your might, mind and strength, then is his grace sufficient for you, that by his grace ye may be perfect in Christ; and if by the grace of God ye are perfect in Christ, ye can in nowise deny the power of God.
And again, if ye by the grace of God are perfect in Christ, and deny not his power, then are ye sanctified in Christ by the grace of God, through the shedding of the blood of Christ, which is in the covenant of the Father unto the remission of your sins, that ye become holy, without spot.
Moroni 10:32-33

And IF you do these things, you will become mighty men and women unto God; even like unto the Brother of Jared, of Nephi, of Captain Moroni, of Mormon and Moroni, of Joseph Smith, of Ether, of Paul and Peter, and you will be like unto ALL the best examples that the world had to offer as they followed Jesus Christ. If you follow the Lord Jesus just as they did, in nowise would you NOT receive this heavenly gift of Eternal Life. This I testify to you, in the Holy name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Cuicuilco & Quetzalcoatl vs Jesus- Are they "one in the same" if only a bare resemblance of the Christ?

The Legend and Tradition of a Great White God is found in one either named as Cuicuilco or Quetzalcoatl. It is not LDS church doctrine that these names or definitions represents Jesus Christ as this, "Great White God" who visited them but for the sake of argument, let's explore how this same Jesus could in fact be the same beings of legend held by the Aztec and the Mayans.

Jesus Christ, when he visited the Nephites and Lamanites shortly after his resurrection. The family of Lehi made their home in Meso-America;


After the Nephites were completely destroyed, images of this "Great White God" continued to exist in the from of Quetzalcuatl and Cuicuilco; Just before the Nephites were whiped out, they had already begun sacrifice women and children to their "Idols" which may have included their diluted version of the White deity.


Spanish arrivals, beginning with Columbus, began traveling to the new world. Men who were wrought upon by the spirit of God. Men would follow Columbus and arrive on the new world to colonize and conquer. Instead of meeting with heavy resistance, Cortez was met with veneration and he was treated like a God. They thought that Cortez was the return of the "Great White God" of promise who said he should return.


Cortez attempted to destroy all of their writings and condemned them as a "Pagan form of Christianity." but a few survived, as a testimony that the Lord would not whipe them nor their memory completely off the face of the earth. Mormon endured and possibly foretold the behavior of these that should dwindle in his account.

"...And they did also march forward against the city Teancum, and did drive the inhabitants forth out of her, and did take many prisoners both women and children, and did offer them up as sacrifices unto their idol gods.
Mormon 4:14


In like manner in which the Book of Mormon was preserved, a few of the Mayan texts were also preserved and later translated, taking them several decades within 4 centuries or so to accomplish this feat.


There were few who survived the conquering Spaniards of which may also be a similar foreshadowing of when Jesus Christ returns, bringing about the "Great and Dreadful Day of the Lord" where few will endure that day; the most of which who will survive the times will be those who remain in the covenant which was created by Jesus Christ in the restoration of his true church.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Rome is burning with the "Spirit of God" - Announcement of the Rome, Italy Temple

(Original article at;

Announcement: 4 October 2008

Construction Status

On December 6, 2009, another special fast was held by members and friends of the Rome Italy Stake for City approval of the Rome Italy Temple. While significant progress has been made, the process is not over. Additional meetings are expected in the month of December. A beautiful design has been completed for the temple, but it is not available for public view. An Italian residence that once stood on the temple site and housed full-time missionaries has already been razed in preparation for the temple complex. (1)

On September 6, 2009, a special fast was held for the temple by members in Rome and many former missionaries and friends in anticipation of a review of the Church's request by City officials later that month. Plans call for a complex of buildings that include the temple, a meetinghouse, and a patron housing facility. Although just a small section of the site was originally permitted for construction of the temple, recent zoning modifications—a miracle in itself—allow the entire parcel of land to be used for construction of these buildings. (2)

On February 24, 2009, Elder Dallin H. Oaks met with all of the missionaries of the Italy Rome Mission in a spiritually charged meeting. That evening, he was the speaker at a special member and investigator fireside. His comments focused on preparing for the temple. He spoke of paying tithing, preparing to be ordinance workers, and of receiving what the temple offers: knowledge, covenants, and promised blessings. He urged all in attendance to pray daily that the hearts of the government officials would be softened in regards to the temple. Elder Oaks had already met with these officials to discuss its construction, which he said went very well. (3)

Temple Site

The Rome Italy Temple will be built on an elevated 15-acre site in northeast Rome near the Grande Raccordo Anulare, the circular road (beltway) that surrounds the city. The picturesque country site, punctuated by an exiquisite stand of olive trees, sits on the outskirts of the city at a freeway interchange. (4)

Building sites in Rome must be examined for Roman ruins before construction is permitted. The inspection is carried out by digging trenches every 10 to 15 feet across the property. The day the temple property was to be inspected, Church members in Rome held a special fast. No ruins were found over the entire property, yet an old Roman village was discovered just 100 yards beyond the property boundary line. The Church purchased the property in the late 1990s. (5)

Temple Announcement

Italian members met the announcement of the Rome Italy Temple with the animated cheering and enthusiasm you would expect to see in a sports arena during a last-second win, explained President Massimo De Feo, president of the Rome Italy Stake, in a recent interview. He also added that since the temple announcement, the Stake is seeing the baptism of full families for the first time. In just the past five years, the number of stakes in Italy has grown from three to six. And temple attendance at the distant Bern Switzerland Temple has been much higher from the Saints in Italy than from any other country in the temple district. (6)

President Thomas S. Monson's announcement of a temple to be constructed in Rome was met with an audible gasp and smiles from the congregation gathered in the Conference Center for the Saturday morning session of the October 2008 General Conference. (7) The Rome Italy Temple will be the first temple in Italy and in the Mediterranean region.

Temple Facts

The Rome Italy Temple will be the twelfth temple built in Europe and the first built in Italy.

A charming home, which stood at the highest point of the temple site, was razed to make way for the Rome Italy Temple. It served for a time as an apartment for the full-time missionaries.

Temple History

The growth of the Church in Italy has not been without its opposition. Just three years after the Saints arrived in the Salt Lake Valley, the first missionaries arrived in Genova, Italy, on June 25, 1850, including Elder Lorenzo Snow, who would become the fifth president of the Church. Over the next three years, 221 people were baptized and organized into three branches. But most proselytizing in Italy stopped in the early 1860s in the face of local opposition and because of a request from Church leaders for Italian members to immigrate to Utah. An attempt to reopen missionary work in Italy in 1900 was refused by the government.

The Church was finally reestablished in Italy in 1951, following the conversion of Vincenzo di Francesca, who happened to find a burned copy of the Book of Mormon with a missing cover and title page. Italians who had joined the Church in other countries began to return to Italy during this period. They attended Church with LDS serviceman stationed in Italy in various branches. By the end of 1964, Church records showed 229 members in Italy. That same year, Elder Ezra Taft Benson, an apostle who would become the 13th president of the Church, petitioned the government for permission to resume missionary work. Permission was granted, and missionaries began to proselyte on January 27, 1965. By 1978, membership has grown to over 7,000 and increased to 14,000 by 1990. Today there are over 22,600 members organized into 6 stakes and 7 districts. (8)

Although missionary work had been allowed in Italy since 1964, the Church began in 2000 the lengthy process of seeking a concordat with the government that would grant it state-sponsored status. This status was granted to the Roman Catholic Church in a concordat signed by Mussolini—a relationship that was perpetuated into Italy's post-fascist constitution. Since 1984, however, the Catholic Church has had to share this level of government recognition with other religions operating in Italy. Approved churches become concordates, which receive tax funds and other rights from the government similar to those received by the Catholic Church. (9)

At a London fireside, Elder Kenneth Johnson of the First Quorum of the Seventy related events that have contributed to the Italian government's official recognition of the Church. In October 2006, he accompanied other high-ranking Church leaders, including Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, to a meeting in Rome to make a case for the Church to the government. President Uchtdorf noted the Church's longtime presence and reputation in Italy, but the presiding government official seemed unmoved. Instead, he related that he had traveled—without announcement—to Salt Lake City in preparation for the meeting. Two Italian sister missionaries had served as his guides on Temple Square. He noted the deep impression left on him by these two Italian citizens, and then inquired when the Church might build a temple in Rome. Once these papers are signed, Elder Uchtdorf replied. The officer signed. In April 2007, Prime Minister Prodi gave his signature, and then it proceeded to Parliament. (10)

With legal recognition still stalled in Parliament in late 2009, the Church took the step of hiring a Washington, D.C., lobbyist to help push through the approval. A. Elizabeth Jones, a former high-level State Department employee and ambassador to Kazakhstan, who is now an executive vice president at APCO Worldwide, is lobbying the U.S. embassy in Italy to support the Church's application. The intesa—an Italian term referring to an "understanding" with the government—would carry certain privileges including facilitating the authorization of bishops to perform civilly recognized marriages and making the renewal of visas for missionaries easier. (11)

1. President and Sister Pacini, "Special Fast December 6, 2009," Facebook 3 Dec. 2009, 7 Dec. 2009
2. President and Sister Pacini, "Fast for Temple," Facebook 28 Aug. 2009, 29 Oct. 2009
3. Karen & Will, Online Posting, e' Felice Italian 28 Feb. 2009, 29 Oct. 2009
4. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints News Release, "New Temple Site Locations Announced," 7 Oct. 2008
5. "Rome Italy Temple News," Online posting, 9 Nov. 2008
6. Massimo De Feo, "Massimo De Feo—Stake President in Rome, Italy," Mormon Channel: Into All the World 29 Apr. 2009, 13 Jun. 2009
7. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints News Release, "Church Continues Temple Building Throughout the World," 4 Oct. 2008
8. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints News Release, "First Temple Announced in Rome," 4 Oct. 2008
9. Peggy Fletcher Stack, "LDS Church Wants to Be Official in Italy," The Salt Lake Tribune 9 Sept. 2000: A1
10. John F., "Two LDS Senators in London," Online posting, 21 May 2007, 6 Oct. 2008
11. Carrie Levine, "For Italian Job, Mormons Ask a D.C. Insider for Help," The National Law Journal 6 Oct. 2009, 29 Oct. 2009

(Story Update!!!)

Jane Parker, who is the late Elder Wirthlin's daughter, told us the following story today in Relief Society. She went to a talk by a lawyer for the European Area (each area of the Church has a legal department.) The talk was about the ability to have a temple built in Rome, Italy.

He stated that they knew they needed to have contact with the cardinals of the Catholic Church to see if they would approve or go along with our desire to have a temple built there. He heard of a reception at which the cardinals would be present, and the legal department for the church was also invited. He approached one cardinal
and talked to him about the issue.

The cardinal said, "We will support you in any effort you want because of your support of Proposition 8 in California."

Jane's comment was that she doesn't think the Church people in California who worked so long and so hard on getting that proposition passed and many even suffered persecution probably know that they were the instruments in getting a temple built in Rome, Italy.

Please allow me to add a little more to this inspiring story. (Joseph I. Bentley)

The lawyer mentioned was John Zackrison -- a friend of mine who told LDS attorneys attending our Annual JRCLS Leadership Conf. about this last month. John told us that the Church has owned this temple site for several years. But it was close enough to the Vatican that in order to build a temple there, it required consents from both the Mayor of Rome and the Pope.

At the reception John met the one Cardinal who was charged with approving the temple on behalf of the Pope. The cardinal arranged a followup meeting and John invited the European Area President to attend. He could not attend, but sent his counselor. At the meeting the cardinal soon discovered that both he and the counselor spoke French.
Then they discovered that both of them were from the same city(Bordeaux). And, then, they learned that both had gone to the same school!

Who can deny the Lord's hand in all of this?

Joseph I. Bentley, Director
Orange County Public Affairs

Monday, February 1, 2010

The Un-Read Letter

I was recently told that after I took the time to write him this letter, that it was erased before reading it. The letter was to You Tube user, "thejizzman99" My letters probably get ignored all the time but the fact that he returned to rail me, I decided at that moment that this letter must really be worth something and should live on someplace else.
I put it here, on my blog as, "The Un-Read" letter. My only request from others is that you be upfront and honest with me. If I'm going to write you a letter and you already know in advance that you won't be reading it, please give me the courtesy of at least letting me know. Give me some kind of clue that says, "I'll not accept anything that you say." and say this, for all I care, so I at least know how unreasonable you intend to be.
I value your time and if you value mine, I would appreciate knowing that my time will be well spent and not just tossed in the garbage. I take careful time and plan out these letters. Let me present the filth to you, in its entirety, so you can judge for yourself. To read this letter in context, one must know that it was like giving a child a pill that he would not swallow but since it was never taken, I have little doubt that the person this letter was intended for will ever overcome his self-inflicted wounds...
Josh Nelson

The Letter Proceeds as follows;

As an anti-Mormon myself once, there is hope even for you. Is it hard to kick against the pricks? Are you a "Saul of Tarsus-type?" or are you just a kin to the men who fought against God in yester-year? (Acts 5:33-39)

Acts 5:
33 ¶ When they heard that, they were cut to the heart, and took counsel to slay them.
34 Then stood there up one in the council, a Pharisee, named Gamaliel, a doctor of the law, had in reputation among all the people, and commanded to put the apostles forth a little space;
35 And said unto them, Ye men of Israel, take heed to yourselves what ye intend to do as touching these men.
36 For before these days rose up Theudas, boasting himself to be somebody; to whom a number of men, about four hundred, joined themselves: who was slain; and all, as many as obeyed him, were scattered, and brought to nought.
37 After this man rose up Judas of Galilee in the days of the taxing, and drew away much people after him: he also perished; and all, even as many as obeyed him, were dispersed.
38 And now I say unto you, Refrain from these men, and let them alone: for if this counsel or this work be of men, it will come to nought:
39 But if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God.

(In the letter, I did not quote the scripture but since he erased my message altogether, I didn't want this scripture to also fall by the wayside. It is a very revealing look into those men who fight against God. It almost makes someone wonder if they're really in the right since fighting against the true word of God has never went well for those who do.)

I was once encircled about with everlasting darkness and destruction; but in God's great mercy, he opted to return me to the everlasting light unto salvation. I was preserved by the "Hand of God" and now I'm encircled about with his matchless bounty. I was preserved by the hand of God from a serious accident and while I was recovering, it was made known to me that I was given a chance to repent of my flight from God, having left my first love and undoubtedly, I helped many follow down forbidden paths and they are now lost because of my foolishness in attempting to live as my own person thinking I knew of myself.

I've been redeemed of and commissioned by the Christ as an instrument in his hands to work once again in his vineyard. No unholy hand can divert me. I covenanted to never leave him again. I'm God's go to man forever, so I hate to break it to you. I can only pray that they will notice the mask that you wear and the wolf that lies beneath. God has always proved and by sore experience of my own, that his wisdom is greater than the cunning of the Devil and of those who subject themselves unto him. Although they shall speak louder than some may be able to bear, I am prepared and have put on the whole armor of God.

My only question to you is simply this... how much longer will you endure living with so much wreckless hate against the Lord's established Zion. What chance do you have that the Lord could soften your heart as he has softened mine? Only time will tell. If God can find an honest bone in your body, he can show you the error of your ways if you humble yourself before him, as I was made to do.I was brought low unto nigh unto death until I would mend my ways and return to the fold. One thing he has shown me and he can show unto you is WHO the correct enemy is, even Satan.

Until you know with a perfect knowledge that he is fighting against Zion and enlisting any and all who are willing to join his campaign, you will merrily fight against the Lord's established truth on the earth. They'll continue to do so under the guise of fighting for the cause of God trying to save the damned Mormon's when they are doing all that they can to stand against the fiery darts of the adversary and keep the covenants in which they made. I find it a sad situation when someone as intelligent as you are unable to humble himself and become as a "Little Child" but this pointless argument and debate ought not to be "Childish." That is not what Christ meant about being as a little child, unfortunately...

Good luck to you. Hopefully, the Lord will see fit to grace your life with a life altering experience... and he may, if he discovers that you are not past feeling. He'll work with anything that he sees as whole about the person and he can work with it. If one is rotten to the core and himself is a dead tree that brings forth bitter, the Lord of the Vineyard has not choice but to remove the tree and cast it into the fire.

I sincerely hope this is not your fate. I am eternally grateful that God was able to pluck me out from where you now stand as a disturber of his kingdom to then be like unto Paul, who did much good for the
"Cause of Christ." I bid you well and good luck in this life. I sincerely hope that the hand of providence finds a way to channel the passion that you have and use it for building up of his kingdom on earth...

Josh Nelson