Editor’s note: Mormon Times is highlighting two new books on President Lorenzo Snow, the fifth president of the LDS Church, whose teachings will be the topic of study in Relief Society and Melchizedek priesthood quorums in 2013.
"Latter Leaves in the Life of Lorenzo Snow" is well-researched and very carefully put together by author Dennis B. Horne.
That's evident in the fact that there are 52 pages of introduction bookended by five appendixes and more than 100 pages of bibliography.
Horne left no stone unturned in his effort to explain and honor the life of the fifth president and prophet of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
It couldn't have been easy.
There is limited material to work with, especially compared with other latter-day prophets. (Some material is believed to have been burned by one of his descendants.)
Horne draws heavily from the biography and family record written by the prophet's sister, Eliza R. Snow, and from the manuscript prepared by former newspaper editor and bishop, Orson F. Whitney, in 1890. He also uses a lot of stories and anecdotal information about Joseph Smith because Snow was the last prophet to have known and had the confidence of Joseph as an adult.
He recites the time Snow recalls being in the woods and feeling the presence of his God, a conversion experience that filled him with ecstasy and healing powers.
He explains the impact Snow had on the organization of the LDS Church, emphasizing the need for all members to pay a full tithing and thus pulling the church out of deep debt.
He also includes Snow's personal feelings about eating meat among other issue — and reminds the reader to remember the era and the times. Horne candidly discusses Snow's 18-month imprisonment, of which 11 were spent behind bars.
It's a hefty book, even sandwiched between all the foreword and the sourcing (including editorials and pieces published in the Deseret News, The Salt Lake Tribune and The Salt Lake Herald), not one to pick up for a light read.
But it's valuable reading and includes photographs and stories that bring the lesser-known prophet to life, one often described as a peculiar man, one who lived quietly but powerfully, serving missions, leading, organizing, healing, teaching and obeying his God.
Another book about President Lorenzo Snow
Recently released books about the Doctrine and Covenants
"The Savior in Kirtland" by Karl Ricks Anderson
"Little-Know Stories about the Doctrine and Covenants" by Dan Baker
"You Shall Have My Word: Exploring the Text of the Doctrine & Covenants: the 41st Annual Brigham Young University Sidney Symposium"
"Doctrine and Covenants Encyclopedia: Revised Edition," by Hoyt W. Brewster Jr.
Sharon Haddock is a professional writer with 35 years experience, 17 at the Deseret News. Her personal blog is at sharonhaddock.blogspot.com.