An interesting piece. Racism has existed in the Church, and still
does. The Priesthood ban is one of the most lamentable policies we ever had.
All I can say is we owe a deep apology to many. I know black people who were
interested in joining the Church until they found out they were in an inferior
position because of the ban. It also shows how an opinion, statement, or other
non-doctrinal matter can take root and evolve into "doctrine", when in
fact it is not really doctrinally based. We've ween this many, many times
before.The incident of the sacrament being withdrawn reminded me of
a time when my non-priesthood father-in-law came to church on the day my oldest
daughter was blessed. On that day, he joined the circle during the blessing of
the baby, and he took the sacrament. And you know what? It didn't matter.
It didn't change a thing. Being inclusive is far, far more important than
being exclusive. This goes for a lot of things in the Church. Sadly, exclusion
is far too pervasive.
It'll be neat when people aren't set apart, even in a positive way,
for their skin colour.
So sorry to hear he has bone cancer. A good man.
The concern raised by this topic regarding the history of blacks in the church,
however, has less to do with blacks than it does with how something that was
once taught as doctrine (not misunderstood by the masses, but TAUGHT as
doctrine) by early prophets and leaders of the church can be brushed aside as
folklore by more recent prophets and leaders. Think about it for a minute: If
the priesthood ban had no doctrinal basis from the beginning (as we're now
being told), a revelation would not be needed to overturn it, instead, church
leadership would only need to own up to their prejudices and start giving worthy
men the priesthood. But for years leading up to and even beyond time of the
revelation received by Spencer W. Kimball, the priesthood ban itself (not the
theories that have circulated regarding the reasons for the ban) was taught as a
doctrinal fact. Now even the ban itself is tossed aside as non-doctrinal, along
with the absurd theories behind the ban. So what of today's doctrines will
be brushed aside in future years when they fall out of favor?
Regarding blacks and the priesthood--either the brethren made a mistake or God
didn't want blacks to have the priesthood. Either one is quite problematic.
This article is supporting evidence that denying blacks the priesthood was a
mistake and not what God wanted. It really does raise the question of how much
we can trust the brethren to be doing what God wants. I believe that the
apostles and prophets are called of God and I also believe that they are human
and make mistakes. These facts make it difficult sometimes to distinguish
doctrine from policy and from practice.It definitely pertains to the
Ordain Women discussion. While I think it is possible that God doesn't want
women to have priesthood, the church statements haven't stated that
clearly. I would feel better if the official church responses would say "We
asked God as a group of brethren and we all got this answer from God." What an admirable man, though.
@Kinderly--I think if you read Elder Oaks' talk from April
Conference, you will find he referred to the pattern that only men are ordained
to offices in the priesthood as "divinely decreed."
While I was in high school in Utah back in the 70s, I only recall one black
student attending my school. He was immediately popular possibly because he
played football but I think mostly because of his cheerful nature. Even in those
years, it was becoming a matter of the content of one's character rather
than the color of one's skin. We had a few Hispanic students and I
considered most of them my friends. There were few instances of discrimination I
witnessed but most of them were from earlier generations.Pertaining to the
priesthood, don't overlook the history of the Aaronic Priesthood which in
Old Testament times was held only by direct descendants of the tribe of Levi,
which is why it is also referred to as the Levitical Priesthood. Exclusion of
groups of people didn't start with the blacks in modern days. Even the
Savior himself sent his apostles out first to the Jews only later were they to
go to the Gentiles. If you have faith in God, you must trust in His timetable
and His revelation of those times through His prophets.
@ Left FieldYour premis that a priesthood ban without doctrinal basis
would not require a revelation to correct is incorrect. Actually a revelation is
exactly what would be needed. Take a look at the Doctrine and Covenants. How
many times are revelations given to correct misunderstandings of the gospel. How
many times in church history would the phrase "Behold you have not
understood", be appropriate when dealing with the members of the church.
Perhaps if they understood, there would have been no problems with milk and
butter.The problem is, we are mortals living in an imperfect world, trying
to see eternity through clouded eyes. But I know our leader's eyes are less
clouded than mine and I trust them. I truely believe that if they make a mistake
in guiding us it will be corrected. Their job is to lead us, my job is to
search, ponder, and pray and strive to be more Christ like in my dealings with
Those commenting on this article are brave souls.I have recently wondered
if those making questioning statements fear.....
Joseph Smith said something to the effect that a prophet is only a prophet when
he is acting as such? This implies there are times a prophet is not always a
prophet. So where is the dividing line? Where does personal revelation of the
hearer of the word come in? There are some interesting issues here. It is not
always so black and white.@ kiddsport, I fear you are trying to
rationalize the exclusion of blacks from the Priesthood. There was no valid
basis for it. None. It was clearly in conflict with the 2nd Article of Faith,
which I take as a fundamental principle of the Gospel. (The Articles of Faith
are utterly brilliant).@shadow01, when you say "our
leader's eyes are less clouded than mine", I don't know you, but
as a general rule, I cannot agree. They have many of the same weaknesses,
biases, etc. as the rest of us. Sometimes it clouds judgment. Back to my
earlier point, it is not always so clear cut. As gods in training, we have to
tread on difficult ground for ourselves and not be led around by our noses.
Left Field:A slight correction is in order: The church's essay
indicated that the past justifications regarding the priesthood ban do not
constitute church doctrine today. It did not say the ban itself was not
doctrinal. This is a big difference.Please also keep in mind
President McKay, as president of the church, prayed to the Lord about lifting
the ban on various occasions. On one occasion, President Mckay felt nothing. On
another occasion, President McKay felt impressed NOT to lift the ban at that
time. At another occasion, God impressed upon President McKay to quit asking
about Him about it. In other words, God permitted the ban to remain
for a time but we don't know the reasons (yet). The church also indicated
in its essay we don't have all the reasons why the ban was implemented per
lack of historical records.Don't lose your faith in the
Brethren. They are authorized servants of Jesus Christ and hold all the
priesthood keys for this dispensation. You can trust the Brethren and what they
teach -- they are inspired by the Lord.
I know Darius and have always found him to be a strong loving person. He's
been losing his hearing in recent years, but his handshake is still firm and
people are drawn to him. I'm glad to see him receiving this wonderful
recognition from his church.
John K. Penn, the first of two African-American members of the quorum of the 12
apostles in The Church of Jesus Christ (WHQ: Monongahela, Pennsylvania) was born
the son of freed slaves in Virginia in 1867. He was a member of that quorum from
1910 until his death in 1955.
Having faith sometimes means that we have to take a step or two in the dark. I
don't know why the ban was not lifted until 1978, or why the earlier church
leaders spoke so forcefully against blacks having the priesthood. One day this
will be revealed to us.I do have faith that these men are the
leaders God has chosen. They are men with weaknesses, like all of us, but they
have also been prepared by teir experiences to lead us today. To
me, there is no correlation between this and women holding the priesthood. That
men carry the priesthood is clearly doctinal. It is in scripture. Also, I hold
the priesthood so I can bless the lives of others. It is not a status thing.
Those who demand the priesthood under the fallacy of "equal rights" do
not understand it or its power.
@ Esquire:It appears you are spreading some personal opinion as
fact. Would you please provide some proof or evidence of these 2 statements of
yours: - That racism still exists in the Church today. -
That Joseph Smith said or even insinuated that a prophet isn't always a
prophet. That statement of yours facilitates people with questionable
testimonies to have an excuse in picking and choosing which commandments and
which doctrine they will accept. Rationalizations to not follow
God's prophets have existed for as long as prophets have.For
those who would like actual facts rather than just opinions (which are being
tossed about quite freely in this comment section) regarding the history of
Blacks in the Church, they should go to lds.org and find the link to a very good
article that articulates the issue in a cogent manner. @ Left
Field:Per your suggestion, I thought about your comment for a
minute. I came to the conclusion that your opinions on this matter are
incorrect. As your moniker insinuates, perhaps you are indeed somewhere out in
left field.If people have a testimony, they will follow the
prophets. If not, they won't.
To Left Field about revelation and the Priesthood:Christ taught the
12 that he was only called to teach the House of Israel. Before his ascension,
he commanded them to teach and baptize all men. Fast forward to Joppa. Peter receives a revelation he does not understand. Cornelius, who lives 2
days journey away from Joppa also receives a revelation. Cornelius send his
servants to Joppa to bring Peter to his home. Peter hears Cornelius'
testimony and baptizes and confirms him and all of his household. Peter returns
to Jerusalem, where some of the 12 think he has apostatized because of his
actions. He repeats the whole story and the 12 can see this was the will of God.
Later, Paul receives a revelation which converts him and he becomes
the great Apostle called to teach and baptize non-Jewish people.Does
this sound familiar? How else can God let his will be known to his children on
the Earth, but by revelation. Thus President Kimball received a revelation so
that there would be no question as to what was the will of the Lord.
I would imagine that those today who have an issue with the Church not allowing
women to hold the Priesthood would also find fault with Christ himself for not
choosing any women to be a part of his 12 apostles whom He personally called one
by one in the New Testament. In spite of that fact, most people
still ascertain that Christ wasn't (and isn't) racist or chauvinistic.
To even insinuate such a thing would be ludicrous and irresponsible. The members of the Godhead, who act in one accord, decide whom and when which
people will hold the Priesthood of God. His timetable is not ours to question.
Nor will I. Nor should anyone who has made a personal covenant with God to
follow His prophets upon the earth. Those prophets simply acts as
God's mouthpiece on earth. If a person doesn't believe that, then
perhaps membership in His church is not for that person... until further
personal theological progress can be made.
Be of good cheer Br. Gray - cancer is a tough go, but you're up to it.Thanks for your many years of assistance in the church and for your own
faithfulness, it wasn't as easy a path for you as most. God Bless.
To those who have kindly disagreed with my initial comment, thank you for your
polite discourse. To those who were less cordial in your disagreement,
congratulations on getting that past the comments review committee. And to those
who question why I stated that the ban, and not just the rationale for it, is no
longer considered doctrinal, please note that Brother Gray, who contributed to
the writing of the essay on LDS.org, is quoted in this article as saying that
"I gathered enough information to suspect the priesthood restriction was
likely of man and not of God..." Additionally, commenting on the Church
essay, LDS historian Richard Bushman remarked that the church statement
"drains the ban of revelatory significance, makes it something that just
grew up and, in time, had to be eliminated." In other words, the statement
repudiates not just the rationales, but the ban itself.
@ Brio, to answer your question:John A. Widtsoe, _Evidences and
Reconciliations_, p.236–39"This is an old question. It was
asked of the Prophet Joseph Smith and answered by him. He writes in his journal,
"This morning . . . I visited with a brother and sister from Michigan, who
thought that ‘a prophet is always a prophet'; but I told them that a
prophet is a prophet only when he was acting as such" (Joseph Smith,
_History of the Church_, 5:265). As for racism, if you don't
think it exists, then you will never acknowledge it regardless of the evidence
presented to you. It may usually be subtle, but it's there.
Sounds like a wonderful man. I have a tremendous amount of respect
for individuals such as Bro. Gray who, despite the mistreatment and unfair
judgements of others remain true to their beliefs. He is much more valiant than
I could ever dream of being.
Darius Gray is a great man, Utah is a better place because of him. He is close
friends with Pastor France A. Davis of SLC's Calvary Baptist Church, who is
also a great man.Another great man, though of more modest social
stature, was Nelson Styles, who attended Calvary Baptist in SLC for a very long
time, and was an employee of the Hotel Utah, though he was not allowed to stay
there as a guest.These three individuals, and many more, have been
genuine pioneers within this society, founded by pioneers. I'm very glad
this entire topic is seen so differently than it was in the past.
Re: Esquire "Racism still exists in the church today."Newsflash: racism still exists in the rest of the world. I don't
know why people constantly berate the LDS Church for its transgressions and
imperfections. The Catholic Church, Islam, any major world religion has plenty
of past transgressions. In the end we're all imperfect people who need God.
Same goes for national governments. American government has skeletons in their
closet's past history, but the same goes for any organized government of
any European nation; namely England, France, Germany, Italy, Turkey, I could go
on. Think about how grievously people are oppressed in many third world nations
by government. The possibility for unfairness and oppression exists in any
organized or governing body, and you're joking yourself if you think
otherwise.I think in the end what LDS people share is that a perfect
God shares the gospel through prophets whose mission is to do their best to
share a message that we can be saved through Jesus Christ and that everything
can be made right in this imperfect world someday. Most importantly, we can
learn the truth of this for ourselves through sincere study and prayer.
RE: 1.96 Standard Deviations. The Gospel in Africa had, great early scholars
like Augustine. His mother, St Monica was a Berber, someone who is from North
Africa. So St. Monica would certainly not have white skin.Augustine
was a major influence, on the Reformation theologians, they have the African
church to thank for a great deal of their theology." Tertullian( A.D.
170-215) brown North African not Black sub-Saharan Africans. If these men had
been Americans they would have been classified as Black." Athanasius,(A.D. 296-373)This black African was one of the most important
people in the history of Christianity.(Act 13:1 KJV)”.. at
Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called
…(black G3526) and Lucius of Cyrene… and Saul.”
Versus (3Nephi 19:25,30)". . . they were as white as the countenance …
and behold the whiteness thereof did exceed all the whiteness . . . nothing upon
earth so white as the whiteness thereof . . . they were white, even as
Who is Darius Gray that he is penning official statements for the Church? It
seems to me that the flurry of recent press releases is causing more harm than
good. One need only read the comments to see that people are more confused than
I have had the pleasure of meeting Darius Gray at a fireside a number of years
ago. I have read his books (with Margaret Blair Young) about the early black
saints. A friend of mine was once a college roommate with Bro. Gray. I have
read many articles by him and about him, including his own story about joining
the church. I have tremendous respect for Bro. Gray.
Red Corvette: The amount of rationalization given by those who hate
the LDS Church never ceases to astound me.Here is an example of the
"acting as a prophet" concept: I worked with a grandson of one of the
Apostles. The work environment was terrible. the grandson told a few of us
that he spoke with his grandfather and the counsel was to find another job. One
of the others we worked with (LDS member) took that to mean that all of us
members should leave the company.The apostle was acting as
"grandfather" in that case, not as an apostle.We have to
always be careful when taking comments by prior leaders out of the context they
were made in. Blacks holding the priesthood was not a major issue until the
1970s. When it became one, the prophet asked the Lord and received an answer...
I once found a quote from Brigham Young where he simply declared that the Blacks
would be the last to receive the Priesthood. I don't know if that was
inspired or not, but it sure seems like it came true.
I make no claim of knowing Bro. Gray well. But I attended one of his firesides.
There he seemed quite intellectually capable and in command of a range of
facts. He has resolved himself to the history. I suppose it remains for the
rest of us to do so as well.
Esquire, I have no problem with your quote by Joseph Smith, as long as it
is taken in context and as it was meant. The same statement that he made, could
be held true for any member of the priesthood or relief society that has been
called to a position of responsibility. A title is nothing, if it is void of a
life worthy enough to be matched with it.Prophets are human, and they too can
make mistakes and fail to act even when the spirit prompts. That being said, all
of our prophets have been amazing individuals that have helped guide the LDS
church to where it is today. Without their dedication, love, ability to listen
to Heavenly Father, and devotion to doing what was asked of them; the LDS church
would be nowhere near the size it is today nor have the respect and acceptance
that others around world have given it. Every single prophet has added something
to the church during their time as acting president, and it is very evident that
those contributions would never have been capable, had it not be with the
assistance of divine intervention.
I would like to reply to "Left Field": I think you raise an important
question. Why would a ‘revelation’ be necessary to change the
doctrine if that was not a true doctrine? Non-Israelites were denied access to
the Lords Church (not just the priesthood but membership) during the early
Christian church. Was that doctrine or policy? Did the Lord say Gentiles could
not be members? If yes, when and where did he teach that doctrine? Or where the
early brethren in that time influenced by their culture and old religious
traditions in such a way that they adopted a policy that become doctrine in
their minds? If that was the case then why did it take a revelation to the
prophet (Peter) to change the doctrine? Perhaps God allows us to progress on
our own, and just like with or own children some things we correct right away
and some we wait until the child is old enough to accept the answer. We
believe all that God has revealed, all that He does now reveal, and we believe
that He will yet reveal many great and important things pertaining to the
Kingdom of God.
RE: Twin Lights, “He has resolved himself to the history. I suppose it
remains for the rest of us to do so as well.” Because,Criticizing
our(Mormon) leaders endangers our own salvation.”--The Latter-day Saint
Woman: Basic Manual for Women, Part B, p. 106.RE: RedWings.
“Therefore go and make disciples of All nations=(*ethnos/ethnicity),
baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy
Spirit”,(Mt 28:19).*The human family, black or white. Also,“Go
into all the world and preach the gospel to Every creature.”(Mark 16:15)
March 3, 1836, Joseph Smith gave escaped slave and dear friend, Elijah Abel; the
priesthood.He risked even more persecution, from the already violent mobs.He
proudly called Bro. Abel as called member Quorum of the 70; at a time when
racial divide was leading to a civil war.Brother Able was one of 7 who attempted
to rescue Joseph Smith.He continued on faithfully, and died an active member in
the SLC. My friend, and non-member historian, was the one that found the
forgotten grave. I will never forget the spirit in our home, the day he found it
and called Pres. Hinckley from our phone.He knew it was too important, not be
known by the members; President Hinckley agreed. This find, lead to a
monument and what I believe is the recent release by the church the Priesthood.I
believe that Bro Abel's ordination and calling as a 70, was fore-ordained
for not only during his life, but to help spark important conversations
today.Finding his grave was no coincidence.The finder, traveled from Missouri
because of a feeling that wouldn't leave.Because of Darius Grey and Elijah
Abel; millions of future generations will become members.
What a great article.I was especially touched by the last story when he
gave a priesthood blessing to his sister.Thanks brother Gray for your
faithfulness, your tenderness, your humility, and your great spirit. I have no
doubt that you were one of the great and noble ones that Abraham saw before the
@ WesternPointThat was well said.
The LDS Church has never had a doctrine of infallibility related to its leaders.
The Church has had to learn and grow the same way a person does. Have mistakes
been made? Yes. What does that mean going forward? Love God and thy neighbor. We
all have prejudices but can overcome them by following these two great
commandments. Am I going to follow the prophet? Yes. Am I going to stir up
contention to fight against their teachings? No. We need to be kind to each
other. Even those that disagree with us should be loved. That doesn't mean
we have to accept any kind of wickedness, and can teach against it in all its
forms. However, we need to remember that there is a mote in each one of our eyes
and show love to those that may be living contrary to God's command in
their own way. Racism has no place in the Church, nor does any other form of
hatred. I am trying to change, may we all do so.
Sharrona,Criticism of the Lord's anointed is something we
should be quite careful of. From the NIV:Then the Lord came down in
a pillar of cloud; he stood at the entrance to the tent and summoned Aaron and
Miriam. When the two of them stepped forward, he said, “Listen to my
words:“When there is a prophet among you, I, the Lord, reveal
myself to them in visions, I speak to them in dreams. But this is not true of my
servant Moses; he is faithful in all my house. With him I speak face to face,
clearly and not in riddles; he sees the form of the Lord. Why then were you not
afraid to speak against my servant Moses?”
Brother Gray researched, studied, but smartly, in the long-run, hoped the answer
would come. It did through the channel that has proven most reliable--through a
living prophet. He is a proper example to all of us. Most especially to those
that feel they can "force" revelation through their public protests.
Brother Gray wondered and questioned, but did not overstep his stewartship by
believing he had a more direct channel to revelation. Thank you.
It is possible, that in my opinion, some things are left in place to create men
like Brother Grey. Sometimes Kings wear thorny crowns. What will my test be?
Will I remain faithful to what I know to be true, even though there appears to
be contradictions? There are things that I absolutely know that form the
foundation of my life. There are a lot more things I don't. But, in the
words of Elder Holland, I have doubted my doubts, but not my faith. So into the
dark we step holding fast to what we know, in pursuit of what we don't.
Truth known is "as a lamp unto our feet." If we are faithful to what we
have received, we will receive more. If we harden our hearts to what we know,
we will receive less until we know nothing. Humility in the pursuit of truth is
of absolute importance. God bless us all in answering the questions..."What
is truth?"...and how will I know it when I find it? Maybe an additional
question is "What will I do with it when I find it? I hope to do just what
Bro. Grey did.
Sharrona:Not sure what your point was with the scripture you posted
to me? Blacks were baptized members of the Church for a long time before the
Priesthood ban was lifted. Many received the gospel and were baptized even
though they could not hold the Priesthood. We shoudl be careful
when taking scripture out of context, or using the Lord's words in petty
arguments. His Words are far more valuable than that...
@RedWingsThe priesthood ban was stated as doctrine, saying it was
not a big issue implies you were banned from the priesthood and didnt mind
it.@KaladinOn points of doctrine the church has indeed
erected ex cathedra regarding what the prophets say. The prophets have stated
the priesthood ban was doctrine, they now say it wasnt doctrine.@Twin LightsRight we should not criticise church leaders even when
they are wrong? I know Elder Oaks said that but I will refuse that thank you
RE: RedWings, The Priesthood of the believer. Martin Luther, “…you
are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special
possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of
darkness into his wonderful light.(1Peter 2:9 NIV).Twin Lights,
”the Lord's anointed”?For no one can see me and live. (Ex
33: 18-20)… The LORD often appeared, but not in His full shekinah glory.
Gen. 17:1.(Moses)endured, as seeing him who is invisible (Heb
11:27).the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in
Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined
the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true. Acts 17:11.
i.e…J S, Lectures on Faith, Q. What is the Father? A. He is a
personage of glory and of power. (5:2.). What is the son? First, he is a
personage of tabernacle. “(1 John 4:1).. test the spirits to
see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the
world…..verse 12 No man hath seen God at any time..
To "UT Brit" prove it. Give us a verifiable source that states that the
Blacks would never have the Priesthood. I can only find quotes that state that
it was not yet time for them.You do realize taht there is a fine
line between criticizing a church leader and apostacy right?
Years ago Darius was at a fireside in St George, Utah I attended. I have
remembered a statement he made about being in a minority. His remarks went
something like; Be the only Black Mormon in a White Catholic School!
Sharrona,The point here is not about Moses seeing God (which is a
great topic for another day). Rather that the Lord told Miriam and Aaron quite
forcefully that it was not their place to criticize the prophet. If you are
going to respond, please respond just to that one issue which you raised
previously.UT Brit,I make no claim that church leaders
are never wrong. The local church leaders I know certainly make no such claims.
But there is a method for disagreement outlined in the scriptures of counseling
with folks privately. To declare publically that the prophet is wrong is to
take upon ourselves that mantle – we essentially declare that WE speak for
the Lord. I would have great care making such a declaration.
It should also be recognized that America's history of racial
discrimination has included animus toward American Indians, Mexicans, Asians and
Polynesians, yet the Mormons have from the earliest times of the LDS Church made
serious efforts to recruit people in all those groups into the Church. The
first missionaries to Tahiti were there in 1846, and the large number of
converts among native Hawaiians led to BYU-Hawaii and the Temple in Laie.
Missionaries started work in Japan in 1901 under apostle Heber J. Grant, and
were restarted in earnest after World War II, despite the wartime propaganda
that stirred hatred among other Americans. Today there are close to a million
Mormons in Asia and Polynesia, including over a third of all Tongans, and
100,000 Japanese, and many thousands in the Philippines, Taiwan and Hong Kong.
Membership in Mongolia has mushroomed since the end of the Cold War, with almost
10% of the capital city now LDS. In Latin America, there are a million Mormons
in Mexico, a million in Brazil (including many with African ancestry), and
100,000 in the Dominican Republic (again, many with black ancestry).
To declare publically that the prophet is wrong is to take upon ourselves that
mantleI don't need to do that, they clearly stated that
themselves in the essay, seriously has everyone actually seen it yet, I have
read so many comments that the ban was inspired somehow. It wasn't, 100%
man made, due to prejudice.Please allow this comment through DN
UT Brit,Could there be a slight possibility that D&C 1:38 may
shed some light on this? The Lord himself declares in here that "...though
the heavens and the earth pass away, my word shall not pass away, but shall all
be fulfilled, whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is
the same." If the Lord did not intervene all these years to correct this
issue, doesn't that mean that perhaps it was really his will for that to
happen and allowed his prophets to declare it? Not that he doesn't love
his black children but maybe perhaps because he knows what's best for them
and that then was not the time, thus he inspired his prophets to teach that
though they couldn't hold the priesthood then, they were nevertheless
promised a day and time in the future where they will all receive the blessings
of the priesthood and none will be denied access to it. Remember there were 12
tribes of Israel and he commanded that only the house of Levi should hold the
priesthood. Were the other 11 tribes unworthy of his love? I doubt it.
I have enjoyed all programs that have Darius Gray involved in them. He is a
great missionary for Heavenly Father. I am so proud to see him receiving this
coltakashi, Just to correct and support your point, there are over
688,000 LDS members in the Philippines. When I served my mission there from
98-2000, there were around 450,000 members. In just 14 years, there have been
nearly 200,000 members baptized; a rate that has earned them 2 temples added to
the one in Manilla. For those that look at our faith as a white only faith, they
are truly not looking at the church as a whole. If you were to look at the Utah
membership, you would see more white members due to the population of Utah as a
whole. That being said, there are several branches and wards, that are spanish,
tongan, samoan, filipino, and that speak other languages other than english.
These wards and branches are growing at an enormous rate, due in to the fact
that the seeds that were planted many decades ago, are finally starting to show
that all are welcome under the LDS canopy.The many rumors, lies, and even
mistakes by former members, are being corrected, cleared up, and shown that the
doctrine shows love of all.