MormonLeaks dumps four new documents about LDS Church

Return To Article
Add a comment
  • elpis Blue Springs, MO
    March 17, 2017 3:15 p.m.

    Bishops in the past were criticized by Brigham Young for taking too much on the side. According to historian Michael Quinn who reviewed the church accounting history while at BYU under Leonard Arrington it was on 8 Oct 1860 that BY went after the bishops; "he was contending against the principle in many of the Bishops to use up all the tithing they could for their own families". Brigham decided to cap the revenue share the bishops received as compensation to 8% of tithing collected. Brigham Young also capped max salaries to stake presidents to 2% of all tithing received for the stake.

  • elpis Blue Springs, MO
    March 17, 2017 3:13 p.m.

    With all this news I think it is important to remember that formal fixed salaries for general authorities was not instituted until 8 Sept 1887 by Wilford Woodruff. A salary of $120k in the present day is appropriate for someone who has an average age well over 60years old and is retired. Giving talks once in awhile, studying the scriptures 20hrs/week and traveling from time to time to other countries, is no big deal for $10k/month and good life and health insurance with other perks such as calling and election made sure, second anointing, ordination to godhood and king and so forth.

  • hankel Butte, MT
    Feb. 20, 2017 4:12 p.m.

    There are so many in our nation who think it's their "job" to pry into the business of others, and they are masters at trying to use insinuations to stir up trouble.
    There is little doubt in my mind that the living allowances given to church leaders is, in many, if not all cases, below what they could be making in their professional lives. One way or the other, it is not for me to judge. I have perfect confidence in how church money is managed. Anyone who has served as a ward clerk (which I have) will tell you that the church expects church money to be managed impeccably, and this is the way it should always be.

  • Metallicwyrm utah, UT
    Jan. 16, 2017 9:26 p.m.

    "All of us contribute our time, our talents, our means, and travel--all to help the work. And we're not paid for it in money."
    - Elder Boyd K Packer

  • Wastintime Los Angeles, CA
    Jan. 13, 2017 2:19 p.m.

    summarizerer

    "That being said there are many Churches where leaders get grossly overpaid."

    And of course there are churches that we just don't know how much (total compensation) the leaders are paid because they do not practice financial transparency.

  • summarizerer Berryville, VA
    Jan. 13, 2017 11:26 a.m.

    @Uteofferouus

    "When I was a young missionary, many of my companions were critical of other churches because they had paid ministers or pastors rather than a "lay clergy". I'm sure in many other churches there are members who volunteer time to serve without being paid - much like our church."

    I agree we don't need to be critical of other churches. We should simply focus on the message and benefits of our own religion.

    That being said there are many Churches where leaders get grossly overpaid. I think missionaries and other teachers should be careful when calling other other clergy men and women though.

  • Uteofferouus Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 12, 2017 5:03 p.m.

    @summarizer:

    Thank you for expanding upon my comment - you have provided a very good description of why the LDS Church can honestly claim that we are a church with a "lay clergy". I do not think it would be out of line however if the verbiage were modified just a little to say something like: "the LDS church is a church that functions overwhelmingly with a lay clergy". When I was a young missionary, many of my companions were critical of other churches because they had paid ministers or pastors rather than a "lay clergy". I'm sure in many other churches there are members who volunteer time to serve without being paid - much like our church. We also frequently distributed a church pamphlet that portrayed one of the foundational blocks of the "true church" as having a "lay clergy". I believe we can be less critical of other churches who have some of their principles paid for their full time work in the ministry - just like our church.

  • goosehuntr Tooele, UT
    Jan. 12, 2017 4:48 p.m.

    No one could ever pay me enough to do what they do. I would never be good enough to do what they do. What they deal with day to day for an international organization with unbelievable demands is staggering... And these men are in their 80's and 90's. Puhleeeeeze!! What would you like to be doing in your 80's and 90's? These men are warriors that go to battle each day for the Redeemer of the World.

  • texascamp Grand Junction, CO
    Jan. 12, 2017 12:08 p.m.

    Like many, I'm astounded at how little they receive for living expenses. I have heard that mission presidents get something like $60,000-$70,000. "Dear Lord, please don't call my husband to be a mission president." To leave a successful career and do full-time service for the church would be financially crippling to my family. No matter what career you are in, if you leave it for a time and then return to it, it is like starting over. And if you leave it forever, you are really giving all. But, I'm not a David, or an Abraham, or a Joseph. God will never call me for the big jobs, because I'm not as faithful as Eyring, or Bednar, or even my mission president.

    The fact that the church pays a living stipend for its full time servers, also prevents family dynasties from taking over the church so to prevent that only the wealthy can serve in these life commitment callings. Brilliant! It is the great and grand design of the church that assures us that none of us are too small and insignificant to be called to serve!

  • summarizer Midvale, UT
    Jan. 12, 2017 11:54 a.m.

    @Uteofferouus

    "It also is not unreasonable for the church to be transparent and open about this considering that we have placed a fair amount of emphasis on being a church with a “lay clergy” over the years."

    We have emphasized the Church being a "lay clergy" because the Church overwhelmingly is so.

    There are roughly 4000 stakes and districts in the Church, and somewhat more than 30,000 wards and branches. Let’s not even count the counselors. Let’s not count area authority seventies or scoutmasters or high councilors or Relief Society presidents or any of the other unpaid workers in the Church. That still makes something on the order or 34,000 bishops and branch and district and stake presidents. None of them are paid.

    There are currently, by my count, 108 General Authorities. That’s 0.00317647058 of the number of local unit leaders (bishops and stake, district, and branch presidents) in the Church.

  • Big J Bountiful, UT
    Jan. 12, 2017 9:13 a.m.

    @ Kaydell - Layton, UT

    Here is the text of a verse in the Book of Mormon. What is your interpretation of this verse? What is the LDS Church's interpretation of this verse? Alma 1:26

    The key is “when they are done.” Full time general authorities are never done imparting the word. I on the other hand do not do my calling full time. Therefore, I return to my regular labors.

  • Uteofferouus Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 12, 2017 8:11 a.m.

    @sam54ttt:

    We clearly understand that the General Authorities are paid from the church’s “business ventures”. So what, those are still church resources and church funds and who does the church belong to? Just because your salary as a dentist is way above average citizens does not have anything to do with the significant salary ($120,000) being paid to the General Authorities. It is not unreasonable that a church leader who has to quit his job and work full time for the church should receive a reasonable income. It also is not unreasonable for the church to be transparent and open about this considering that we have placed a fair amount of emphasis on being a church with a “lay clergy” over the years.

  • Flashback Kearns, UT
    Jan. 12, 2017 8:05 a.m.

    This is a big yawner. I read a book called Mormonism: Shadow or Reality while on my mission. In that book the big "revelation" about paying a living allowance to the brethren back in the 60's was "revealed". I did a big yawn and said so what?

    If President Eyring gets a living allowance, that is because he deserves it. He taught at Stanford for a few years, then was the president of Ricks College for a few years. Then he was head of the CES. Then he became a member of the Presiding Bishopric, then an Apostle. When did he have a chance at any type of retirement, pension, 401K or anything else? President Monson is the same way. When did he have a chance to work long enough to get some type of pension? He was in his 30's when called to be an Apostle.

    Matthew Cowley in a talk back in the early 50's talked about this very subject. So any of you that are going to lose your testimonies over this need to re-examine how you think.

  • Big J Bountiful, UT
    Jan. 12, 2017 7:04 a.m.

    This is a "much a do about nothing." I'm personally shock at how little living allowance they receive.

  • Kaydell Layton, UT
    Jan. 11, 2017 11:16 p.m.

    Here is the text of a verse in the Book of Mormon.

    What is your interpretation of this verse? What is the LDS Church's interpretation of this verse?

    Alma 1:26

    And when the priests left their labor to impart the word of God unto the people, the people also left their labors to hear the word of God. And when the priest had imparted unto them the word of God they all returned again diligently unto their labors; and the priest, not esteeming himself above his hearers, for the preacher was no better than the hearer, neither was the teacher any better than the learner; and thus they were all equal, and they did all labor, every man according to his strength.

  • Meckofahess Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 11, 2017 9:44 p.m.

    These salaries ($120,000) are not insignificant. The current median household income for Utah (the headquarters of the church) is $62,912. So that salary is significantly higher than what the average Utahn makes. Most fair minded people can understand how a church leader who works "full time" for their church and gives up their regular job to do so should have a reasonable income. However, studies have shown that an average LDS Bishop devotes 32 hours per week to the church (on average) which really is not much less than the general authorities put in - and they do it for no compensation and must maintain their full time jobs. In my opinion, we should be humble about how we view these salaries and try to view it in context.

  • christoph Brigham City, UT
    Jan. 11, 2017 9:33 p.m.

    Money is over rated of course. Whenever I see a principal in public schools making 6 figures, I feel sorry for the principal and vice-principal, and why? Few last. Burn out and heart attacks and what money does to relationships is not worth it. They deserve it, the principals and vice-principals, they earn every penny, yet it can't be sustained over time. Something always has to give. The gospel is a burden that makes our lives easier.

  • christoph Brigham City, UT
    Jan. 11, 2017 9:29 p.m.

    Everyone who lives in America is rich, such a rich wonderful country, with rule of law and people go to jail for breaking the law. Some people are work horses behind the scenes and get little sleep over decades, and these are those called to the highest offices. We are all "set for life" with faith and community and family.

  • jmort Templeton, CA
    Jan. 11, 2017 8:07 p.m.

    @sam543ttt

    "I made more money as a first year graduate from dental school in 2000 than Elder Henry B. Eyring. Substantially more. The full-time leaders of the church are not paid from donations from the members of the church, ie tithing or fast offerings. They are paid from the church's business ventures profits."

    1) How do you know how much money President Eyring received? As I noted above, the article provides very limited information, certainly not enough to draw the conclusions you are drawing. The article only discusses the "base" living allowance. But what does "base" mean? Where I come from, it means that other amounts are also paid. We don't know what they are.
    2) It is little comfort to me to know that member contributions were first invested and then the income from the investments used to pay leaders. Why is it comforting to you? More information/disclosure is needed in this area too.

  • Wastintime Los Angeles, CA
    Jan. 11, 2017 7:28 p.m.

    @Riverton Cougar

    "In an overly-simplistic view, stipend and salary are the same: money that is given to you."

    Thank you. The real issue here, of course, (and the issue I originally raised) is whether or not the top clergy are paid, not what the payment is called. So, if somebody gives you money in exchange for something (no matter what for) have you been paid? Unless it is an amount that you may have to give back, I would submit yes... under any definition. Calling payments interest, dividends, royalties, stipends, salaries, etc., is irrelevant. You have been paid.

    Similarly, accepting money for abstaining to do something still constitutes being paid. For example, payments under non-compete agreements (in the M&A world) are still payments constituting income, even though work is forbidden to be performed. Payments made to Church leaders to keep them from working elsewhere are analogous.

    Your attempt to make the Church look like it does not pay its top leaders is, to use your words, "very feeble".

  • ThinksIThink Seattle, WA
    Jan. 11, 2017 6:54 p.m.

    @Bluto,

    You said:

    "Shock shock....General authorities are given a living allowance !
    What's next?
    -Joseph Smith had more than one wife?
    -The Lords's Prophets are not perfect?
    -There are various accounts of the first Vision?
    -The Church has business holdings?
    -Women can indeed wear slacks to church?
    -Some BYU students can indeed wear beards?"

    Why do you pick the things that are not a shock? Why not mention the shock that the papyrus used to translate the Book of Abraham was found to be a run of the mill Egyptian funerary text. Why not the shock that the Book of Mormon mentions plants and animals that did not exist in the Americas at that time?

    You pick the easy ones and look past the shocks that have no answers.

  • Misty Mountain Kent, WA
    Jan. 11, 2017 5:50 p.m.

    I think there are two issues here. One is that the Church has always presented itself as having a lay--i.e. unpaid--clergy. It's widely known that missionaries have to pay their own way. But even if a missionary is from a well off family, he is not allowed to live in housing which could be considered luxurious (which, in Central America, means having heat and hot water--and don't think heat isn't a big deal because it's a tropical climate; in the highlands it dips below 40 in the January mornings.) Missionaries are supposed to live like the average ward member. Here that means a cheap apartment.

    The second is the amount of these stipends. Salt Lake City housing is relatively cheap It's not Honolulu or San Francisco. And money is fungible; if the stipends were not so high, the Church's income would be higher and members who really can't afford tithing would--perhaps--not be so pressured to pay the full 10%.

  • ReadMineFirst Ft. Collins, CO
    Jan. 11, 2017 5:27 p.m.

    Did anyone happen to see the article in Forbes magazine regarding the salaries of University Presidents? Part of that article read: Renu Khator, president of the University of Houston and chancellor of the University of Houston system, is the first woman and Indian immigrant to lead a public university system in Texas. She also happens to be the top-earning public college executive in the country, having taken in a stunning $1.3 million in total compensation this past fiscal year.

    I can only imagine what President Eyring's salary would have been had he been chosen to be the President of Stanford University, where he once taught. Or how about Elder Kim Clark who was the Dean of Harvard Business School? I count my blessings that these wonderful men of God have chosen to serve the Lord. Remember President Benson's saying? "Who does God's work gets God's pay!"

  • sam543ttt herriman, UT
    Jan. 11, 2017 3:46 p.m.

    Here's news for Mormon leaks: I made more money as a first year graduate from dental school in 2000 than Elder Henry B. Eyring. Substantially more.
    One more note to those against the church. The full-time leaders of the church are not paid from donations from the members of the church, ie tithing or fast offerings. They are paid from the church's business ventures profits. This was stated in the article but I guess many of you do not understand this point.

  • Riverton Cougar Riverton, UT
    Jan. 11, 2017 2:59 p.m.

    @wastintime

    In an overly-simplistic view, stipend and salary are the same: money that is given to you. And that's the dictionary's job, to provide the most simple definition.

    The difference in this case is that employees who receive salaries receive their pay as compensation for the work they put in. General authorities receive stipends to compensate them for not being able to find employment, and therefore still have money to use for their living expenses.

    Either way, the Church does not have a paid clergy, and the stipend allows the general authorities to be selected from anyone, not just the ones who are wealthy enough to retire at their current age, even though it seems that most receive less than they were before.

    Your attempt to make the Church look like they pay their leaders for their work, like an employee, is very feeble.

  • 2close2call Los Angeles, CA
    Jan. 11, 2017 2:05 p.m.

    @IdahoGirl "And I will not ever be commenting on a MormonLeaks article again. They obviously are disgruntled exMormons with nothing better to do with their time."

    This kind of comment seems like an unfair dig at exMormons. As an exMormon apostate myself, I have specifically chosen not to comment either way on the appropriateness of the salaries of the LDS paid clergy on this article because it no longer concerns me. I suspect most commenters who do have an opinion are currently members.

  • sashabill Morgan Hill, CA
    Jan. 11, 2017 1:48 p.m.

    What MormonLeaks is doing sound like the same kind of conspiratorial theorizing and innuendo which has been thrown at Jews and other minorities for generations. Portraying a religion or group as (1) big, (2) wealthy,(3) powerful, and (4) sinister, is one of the oldest games in the book. ("Protocols of the Elders of Zion," anyone?)

  • summarizer Midvale, UT
    Jan. 11, 2017 1:48 p.m.

    @Is it true

    "...If others have no issue with General Authorities receiving so much allowance then what's the harm in being fully transparent about how much that allowance is."

    If it isn't an issue then why are you trying to make it into one? Why is it so important to you to know the exact stipend which LDS leadership make?

    The leak has given an idea of how much general authorities make and so you already have a clue into how much they receive.

    "If members have to account annually for their financies each year..."

    I don't share with others how much I pay in tithing and others don't share with me. It is a private matter between Myself and God.

  • Wastintime Los Angeles, CA
    Jan. 11, 2017 1:38 p.m.

    @Riverton Cougar

    "A lot of reaching here. A stipend is NOT the same as salary. Your description is very deceiving; sure, most mention "salary", but they almost all say it's a form of salary, or a regular amount paid to someone in the form of an allowance or salary. In fact, several definitions specifically include the exact notion for which the Church uses it for: a payment made for living expenses."

    I believe it is you who are reaching in your attempt to differentiate stipend from salary. As you conceded, "they almost all say it's a form of salary". So in conceding that it is a special subset or "form" of salary (used to pay living expenses), you have conceded my point that is it salary. I would add that most people who earn salaries use those salaries to pay their living expenses, so the distinction you are trying to make is meaningless for practical purposes.

    I would also add that the Internal Revenue Code does not distinguish between "stipends" and "salaries"; they are both gross income under IRC Sec 61. "Parsonage" is a subset with a (tax) distinction, but we are not discussing that here.

  • Is it true England, 00
    Jan. 11, 2017 12:45 p.m.

    I thought the idea of making comments was that every one could voice their opinion. Why is it that some feel a person must be apostate if they disagree with some thing. News for those who's narrow mindedness leads them to label individuals as apostate for having a different view to yours but that my fellow earth family is exactly how this church operates . In fact it invites the opinions of its members all the way up to the First Presidency and the tweleve. Do they disagree on things, sure they do, do they invite each to openly give their opinion, absolutely but at the end of the debate they sustain the file leader. It's ok not to agree with the amount of financial support General Authorities receive, that doesn't equate to not supporting them. I personally sustain and support but personally disagree with the amount of financial support received. That's one of the blessings of this Church, you can have such feels and express them with out that making you apostate. I also disagree with drinking cafffine drinks, shooting animals for sport, eating meat not sparingly but that doesn't make me apostate either.

  • Is it true England, 00
    Jan. 11, 2017 12:28 p.m.

    In the teachings of President Ezra Taft Benson, he speaks to the Sister of the Church and asks them to come home from the work place. He then states, "two incomes take family life beyond the norm". I don't think that he was under the impression that the norm is 130 dollars a year. This isn't an issue of sustaining leaders as called of God it's a case that clearly, If others have no issue with General Authorities receiving so much allowance then what's the harm in being fully transparent about how much that allowance is. We would request this and expect it of our political leaders why not the Church?. If members have to account annually for their financies each year to the leaders, why shouldn't the leaders also have to account for how much they receive to support them in their roll. Some one much wiser than I declared, Where much is given, much is required!

  • Riverton Cougar Riverton, UT
    Jan. 11, 2017 11:56 a.m.

    "Stipend equals salary. Look up the definition of stipend. It is a fancy English name for salary. In almost every definition of 'stipend' I can find, the first word describing it is 'salary'.

    The top clergy is paid, the lower levels are not.

    If I ask my boss to start calling my salary a stipend, the amount will be the same, it will still be taxed the same, and I will spend it on the exact same things. Then I can tell everybody that I am not compensated for my work, but receive a stipend to cover my expenses!"

    A lot of reaching here. A stipend is NOT the same as salary. Your description is very deceiving; sure, most mention "salary", but they almost all say it's a form of salary, or a regular amount paid to someone in the form of an allowance or salary. In fact, several definitions specifically include the exact notion for which the Church uses it for: a payment made for living expenses.

    The general authorities are not employees of the Church. However, since their work does not give them time to be employed elsewhere for income, they are given a stipend to compensate so they can still pay living expenses.

  • disowned117 South Jordan, UT
    Jan. 11, 2017 11:49 a.m.

    Just to put things into perspective, they are not supposed to make anything. So any comments in regards to what they make is really incorrect. Another, the amount they receive whether it is for bare necessities or a lavish lifestyle is subjective. Either way this is interesting stuff.

  • wquirke Ireland, 00
    Jan. 11, 2017 11:44 a.m.

    I'm not quite sure where people get their information from, but, the Janitors in Europe were not just sacked! I am employed by the church here in Ireland. I was asked if I wanted to take a severance package. The severance was the same as what you would get if you were working for any other company doing the same work. If you didn't want to take severance you didn't have to. I chose not to. I was given other jobs to do to make up my time. So nothing sinister there!

  • Houstonian Katy, TX
    Jan. 11, 2017 11:36 a.m.

    How much do you think they will earn in the private sectors if they choose not to serve the Lord? I would say many times more.
    I am very grateful for their willingness to serve the Lord and everyone, giving up money and worldly glamour and reputation.
    My teenage son asked me, " Can you name any FAMOUS Mormons?" Yes, we have so many business executives, great professors, etc who put the Lord first by giving up their professions and fame to serve the Lord! This is the true church and I am trying to follow their examples in my humble way.

  • summarizer Midvale, UT
    Jan. 11, 2017 10:59 a.m.

    @Wastintime

    "The top clergy is paid, the lower levels are not."

    The top clergy responsibilities entail more than clergical work, the lower levels don't.

    The top clergy are very much involved with the Church in more than clergical /religious related activities, the lower levels are not.

  • Wastintime Los Angeles, CA
    Jan. 11, 2017 10:37 a.m.

    Stipend equals salary. Look up the definition of stipend. It is a fancy English name for salary. In almost every definition of "stipend" I can find, the first word describing it is "salary".

    The top clergy is paid, the lower levels are not.

    If I ask my boss to start calling my salary a stipend, the amount will be the same, it will still be taxed the same, and I will spend it on the exact same things. Then I can tell everybody that I am not compensated for my work, but receive a stipend to cover my expenses!

  • Bluto Sandy, UT
    Jan. 11, 2017 10:33 a.m.

    -First of all, the LDS Church should find out and fire the person who leaked the pay stubs.
    -Then hold a Church court, for said offender.
    -Then file charges.

    Shock shock....General authorities are given a living allowance !

    What's next?

    -Joseph Smith had more than one wife?
    -The Lords's Prophets are not perfect?
    -There are various accounts of the first Vision?
    -The Church has business holdings?
    -Women can indeed wear slacks to church?
    -Some BYU students can indeed wear beards?

    Time to grow up people.

  • summarizer Midvale, UT
    Jan. 11, 2017 10:22 a.m.

    @It is true

    "These leaders already have their flights covered if on assignment and their homes if they are sent to Preside in an Area Presidency, along with a vehicle."

    They are on assignment by the Church what would you expect them to do? Sell their home in the states and ship their vehicle overseas for a 2 - 3 year assignment?

    "This kind of allowance is far beyond the living income of most LDS families...How can this level of personal funding every be justified?"

    Why would this allowance be necessary for others besides those that are in fulltime service?

    "It's odd but recently the church in Europe sacked employies where worked as cleaners of local chapels."

    Not sure about veracity of this statement but the Church eliminated janitors within the US back in 2010. It makes me doubt the truth of this.

    "It's really not good and puts these leaders in a whole new light."

    It really doesn't put them "in a whole new light." As other have stated the stipend or allowance has been known about for years.

  • ajwslm Longview, TX
    Jan. 11, 2017 10:18 a.m.

    How grateful I am to KNOW that the Book of Mormon is true, that the Plan of Salvation as taught by the Church is the "plan of salvation unto all men," that temple ordinances are necessary for salvation, and that Jesus Christ himself allows imperfect men to officiate and direct His perfect Church.
    When you come to KNOW these things and others unique to the Church are true, nothing else matters.

  • Is it true England, 00
    Jan. 11, 2017 9:40 a.m.

    The question that most people will have is who is setting the level of allowance. These leaders already have their flights covered if on assignment and their homes if they are sent to Preside in an Area Presidency, along with a vehicle. This kind of allowance is far beyond the living income of most LDS families, especially those faithful who have been obedient and where the mother has followed the council to stay at home and raise a family. How can this level of personal funding every be justified. It's odd but recently the church in Europe sacked employies where worked as cleaners of local chapels. These were often the most humble of saints earning just a low income cleaning. But we then learn of general authorities receiving an increase in their allowance which is already so rediculosly high. It's really not good and puts these leaders in a whole new light. And it doesn't really matter if it comes out of tithes or not, it still results in a leadership of highly financed people living and receiving an income far beyond the norm of the majority of the people. These are not executives, they are or should be Church representatives of He who's name the Church is.

  • IdahoGirl Pocatello, ID
    Jan. 11, 2017 9:28 a.m.

    And I will not ever be commenting on a MormonLeaks article again. They obviously are disgruntled exMormons with nothing better to do with their time.

  • summarizerer Berryville, VA
    Jan. 11, 2017 8:33 a.m.

    @scotchipman

    "The whole point of the leaked documents in that the LDS Church has always claimed "no paid clergy", all they need to do is open up their financial records and show that some leaders at the top of the corporation are paid and stop with the "no paid clergy" nonsense."

    It isn't nonsense man. The people receiving living stipends are not only clergyman but they are also involved in managing the affairs of the Church. Which may or may not be religious in nature.

    I could be considered part of clergy and I don't get paid and haven't ever gotten paid. I also haven't had a role in the Church (besides missionary) that was a full-time 24 / 7 position. For probably 99% of the Church the same be said.

    People that are receiving stipends multiple roles in life. I'm sure they put in at least an 8 hour day working on not only religious problems but also are involved in other issues with which the Church is invested in.

    If their only job was to do a few things on Sunday then you might have a point.

    It is fairly absurd how nit-picky critics get to try and cause problems.

  • runnerguy50 Virginia Beach, Va
    Jan. 11, 2017 8:00 a.m.

    The Church really needs to open it's books. As a member I feel I have a right to see where the money goes.

  • summarizerer Berryville, VA
    Jan. 11, 2017 7:48 a.m.

    @Man of Letters

    "That said, particularly when money is involved, the potential for abuse or misuse becomes significant. More thorough disclosures would build trust in the Church and in those who handle or benefit from tithes. It would also reveal discrepancies or mismanagement which might require correction."

    Where is the fire? Where is even the smoke? The Church already has an auditing department that audits the churches finances and reports every year during conference.

    While yes the Church could be more transparent but why does it need to? What have Church leaders done to suggest they have or are doing anything the would be considered untrustworthy?

  • ThinksIThink Seattle, WA
    Jan. 10, 2017 10:00 p.m.

    I have to concur with a number of other posters here. This leak is not news.

    I knew years ago the church had paid clergy.

  • wtrfdsf Spanish Fork, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 9:16 p.m.

    I think this article was extremely tactless. Elder Bruce D. Porter passed away less than two weeks ago. His funeral was last Thursday. As a member of his family, I know how hard he worked and the sacrifices made by his family. He was called as a General Authority when he was only 42. He has four children. How do you suggest he was to support them while working more than full-time for the church? Mr. McKnight is obviously classless.

  • 6thGenMormon Hughson, CA
    Jan. 10, 2017 7:48 p.m.

    This is such old news, at least 31 years old, probably more. From Elder Hinckley in October 1985 conference (look it up):

    "I should like to add, parenthetically for your information, that the living allowances given the General Authorities, which are very modest in comparison with executive compensation in industry and the professions, come from this business income and not from the tithing of the people."

    The allowance is from commercial interests, not tithing. And as I understand the quote, it is for all GAs, not just the 12 (15). Maybe that will be the next "leak"...?

  • One of Vai's Cousins DC, Washington
    Jan. 10, 2017 7:40 p.m.

    1. For top leadership of large, successful organizations, this a rather small amount of compensation.

    2. The time for secrecy in the church is coming to an end. It has only hurt the image of the church. This is one example in which the unreasonable need to keep things secret (leadership compensation) is far more damaging than the truth (that most leaders take a pay cut to serve).

  • Norman Roy Odessa, MO
    Jan. 10, 2017 7:21 p.m.

    This isn't news. An allowance or expense account is not a salary. If these men had to pay their travel expenses and all that is required to function in their individual office... out of their own pockets... the price would be prohibitive. This is just another attempt by apostates to discredit the work. People of faith are not interested in garbage.

  • DEJ Canada, 00
    Jan. 10, 2017 6:04 p.m.

    Is my eternal salvation dependent on this information? I think not. Next...

  • BB Santaquin, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 5:53 p.m.

    @Man of letters
    I don't think any transparency of this kind is needed... either you believe they are prophets, seers and Revelators, or you don't... I for one believe they are, so it is between them and the Savior (whose church it is) what they do and don't receive...

  • windsor City, Ut
    Jan. 10, 2017 5:36 p.m.

    pianoplayermom said: "Once again, we hear of people leaving the church, but they just can't leave it alone."

    So true.
    I know countless people who have left the LDS Church and there is NOT ONE that can leave it alone.

    The law of averages would suggest otherwise, but there is seriously not one.

    Joseph Smith said
    "Before you joined this Church you stood on neutral ground. When the gospel was preached, good and evil were set before you. You could choose either or neither. There were two opposite masters inviting you to serve them. When you joined this Church you enlisted to serve God.
    When you did that you left the neutral ground, and you never can get back on to it.
    Should you forsake the Master you enlisted to serve, it will be by the instigation of the evil one, and you will follow his dictation and be his servant."

  • ute alumni SLC, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 5:02 p.m.

    Why doe anyone care? If you donate then it not your money to direct where it goes. Most of the GAs make MUCH more money than what they are given. 24 /7 job, no privacy always helping others and constant travel......no thanks. Not enough money in the world to do that work. Thanks for their service.

  • Riverton Cougar Riverton, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 4:49 p.m.

    "I am a little embarrassed that, on my mission, I confidently and repeatedly taught that there is no paid ministry in the church. I had no idea that anyone was paid (except maybe the janitors). I believed it was a sign that the LDS church was true.

    I wonder how many missionaries are still out there doing the same thing? How many Sunday School classes are teaching that? Primary classes? That should probably be corrected."

    As somebody already brought up, living allowance is different. I remember on my mission being asked if any ministers were paid, and answering that general authorities received just enough to have their living expenses paid for (since they leave their job to become a general authority), but no actual salaries. I don't think it is swept under the rug, but it isn't brought up a lot.

    ---

    To those comparing Wikileaks to MormonLeaks, there's a big difference in why the outrage is different: one exposed corruption in an organization while the other didn't. Conservatives would be smart to not praise Wikileaks so much-- it's only a matter of time until GOP stuff gets leaked.

  • Thrive Provo, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 4:34 p.m.

    I hope the female leaders in our church are paid the same living wage. Does anyone know if they are?

  • coltakashi Richland, WA
    Jan. 10, 2017 4:30 p.m.

    $120,000 a year is equal to the salary of many young men and women who have just earned a law degree or an MBA with exceptional credentials in school. President Eyring has a PhD and taught organizational management at Stanford. The people who have been called as full time general authorities have been at levels in their careers where they made several times that in compensation. If they sent out their resumes, they could easily find employment that was much more remunerative. They and their wives (including wives who had to give up their own careers because their time is devoted to service alongside their husbands) are making substantial financial sacrifices to serve in the Church. As to the confidentiality of income information, ask your doctors and your lawyer what their income is. The proper answer is, none of your business. And there is no doubt that they work hard and long hours. Whoever stole this information is a thief, and the people who issued it were violating privacy.

  • byugraduate Las Vegas, NV
    Jan. 10, 2017 4:27 p.m.

    Just post some high level financial statements. That would be a step in the right direction. We don't need secret combinations.

  • gratefulmouse san angelo, tx
    Jan. 10, 2017 4:26 p.m.

    I always knew that the general authorities received a stipend otherwise how could some become general authorities unless they were. I hate to see this kind of talkt. we always tell others that we are not a paid clergy. its obvious that those called to be in positions that take up all their time need to be paid somehow especially the younger ones with children. I also hate for it to look like its a job...and your being paid to do a job...nit picky feels so unspiritual. I am a nit picky person with my own finances. most of us do not make anywhere near the 100,000 mark. we raised 5 kids and took care of housing and healthcare within a much lower amt.. my husband and I are now retired and we make even lower then what we use to make.. we don't have the responsibility of traveling all over the world though...there are so many people making way to little in the united states and pay isn't keeping up with cost of living. I feel as long as the general authorities are doing their part and paying their tithing etc....why should anyone think about it..after all....I also feel if I'm doing my part and paying my tithing no matter what we get the Lord will bless us ....

  • MoreMan San Diego, CA
    Jan. 10, 2017 4:25 p.m.

    If there is nothing to be ashamed of, why all the secrecy and NDA's?. Besides most GA's will be taking a pay cut based upon the makeup of the Q70.

  • jmort SLO, CA
    Jan. 10, 2017 4:22 p.m.

    People are jumping to unwarranted conclusions here with very limited information. In fact, the article raises tons of questions while providing very limited substantive information.

    For example , the article says "a letter from the faith's Presiding Bishopric to Elder Bruce D. Porter on Jan. 2, 2014, appears to be a memo stating that the General Authority base living allowance has been increased from $116,400 to $120,000."

    What is meant by the word "base" in that sentence? Does "base" mean the beginning amount a first-year GA receives? Does it mean that there are additional amounts like bonuses or other fees paid? I don't think we can by any means jump to the conclusion, just from this leak alone, that the "base living allowance" (of $120K in 2014) is the total remuneration received.

    "Ministers" receive tax benefits in the form of excluded income for the amount designated for housing ($21.5K according to the article for President Eyring in 2000), and they can elect to be exempt from federal self-employment taxes. Query how the after-tax income of GAs living in Utah compares to the after-tax income of other Utahns?

  • KevinSim Springville, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 4:19 p.m.

    I think transparency is great, and I'm extremely happy to see the LDS Church becoming more and more transparent every day. But the person posting that her/his bank can give a detailed description of where all her/his money was at any given time forgets one very vital point. The LDS Church is not a bank. It's not even a society of believers, as many other churches effectively are. The LDS Church is God's organization He has chosen to take His message to the world, and God runs it however He wants to run it. If the LDS Church currently chooses to not publish the salaries of general authorities, I am completely confident it is because God has never inspired them to publish those salaries.

  • KevinSim Springville, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 4:13 p.m.

    Grandma 20 posted:

    =16. "These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto
    =him:
    =17. "A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,
    =18. "An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running
    =to mischief,
    =19. "A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among
    =brethren."

    McKnight certainly is sowing "discord among brethren"! Or at least he's trying to.

  • scotchipman Lehi, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 3:54 p.m.

    I'm sure we can all agree that the amount these top leaders are paid (living allowance?) is low for a comparable position in other corporations, yes the LDS Church is a corporation and set up as such. The whole point of the leaked documents in that the LDS Church has always claimed "no paid clergy", all they need to do is open up their financial records and show that some leaders at the top of the corporation are paid and stop with the "no paid clergy" nonsense. I personally think anyone spending more that 10 ish hours a week working for the LDS Church should be paid which would include all Bishops.

  • mhenshaw Leesburg, VA
    Jan. 10, 2017 3:44 p.m.

    >>I am a little embarrassed that, on my mission, I confidently and repeatedly taught that there is no paid ministry in the church.

    And you taught the truth.

    There's a difference between a salary and a living allowance. Living allowances aren't negotiated; they aren't based on one's job title, previous experience, or personal qualifications; there are no raises or performance bonuses, retention bonuses, stock options, no promised pensions, etc. But even if you consider them "paid, the amount they receive is small relative to work they're asked to perform. Show me another organization in this country with 15 million+ members whose board of directors works 6 days out of 7 for less than $100,000/year. Given their professional qualifications, I'd say we're getting a bargain.

    I also note, BTW, that if the Church didn't give the full-time General Authorities a living allowance, then the only people who could be full-time General Authorities would be people who are personally wealthy. Then Church critics would complain about *that*, saying the LDS Church is just led by a bunch of rich people. There's no satisfying the critics.

  • Glen Danielsen Yorba Linda, CA
    Jan. 10, 2017 3:34 p.m.

    " I do agree that more transparency ... is needed. The world has changed and while I don't think it was wrong to not publish these things in the past, it is now a necessity in the present."

    sharon-0791, the Church has Always had the transparency you and others pine for. The truth spoken was and is that some of the General Authorities receive a modest stipend. Beyond that, is it necessary to give dollar amounts in order to be 'transparent'? To a reasonable public, I don't think so. To apostates, anti-Mormons, and Mormon Liberals whose hobbies are to 'expose' the Church or take potshots at it, no amount of transparency is enough.

  • Don Bugg Cheyenne, WY
    Jan. 10, 2017 3:22 p.m.

    AT - Elk River, MN suggests that there is no real difference between tithing funds and the funds that are used to pay living allowances. I can't agree: One important distinction is that tithes are tax-exempt, whereas the money used to compensate some general authorities comes from profit-seeking investments and businesses that are taxed.

  • PacificCreek Puyallup, WA
    Jan. 10, 2017 3:10 p.m.

    President Monson was in his 30s when he was called as an apostle, President Hinkley was in his 40s. How many of us could accept a lifetime calling at age 30, 40 or even 55 and live out your life on savings? I would guess the answer is very close to none. The fact is that these General Authorities work their tails off until they die, while taking 1 day off a week. They make a huge sacrifice to do so in travel, time away from family and for many of them cutting their careers short. A living allowance is more than reasonable for these leaders.

    I once sat in first class on a plane and ended up sitting across the row from Elder Holland. I don't know this for sure but I'm guessing he ended up in the front of the plane for the same reason I did. Because he is in a plane almost every week and has status with the airline! I'm sure a critic of the church could turn that story of Elder Holland sitting in first class to a tale of leaders spending the churches money on luxuries but I doubt that is true.

  • Grandma 20 Allen, TX
    Jan. 10, 2017 3:09 p.m.

    Proverbs 6:16-19

    16. "These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:
    17. "A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,
    18. "An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief,
    19. "A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren."

  • pianoplayermom Rancho Cucamonga, CA
    Jan. 10, 2017 2:55 p.m.

    Once again, we hear of people leaving the church, but they just can't leave it alone. I didn't know the general authorities of the church received a living allowance, but I'm relieved to know that they do. They accomplish so much and give so much of their time, and taking their age into consideration and all, I'm happy to see they receive something.

  • MelRC New Zealand, 00
    Jan. 10, 2017 2:52 p.m.

    Leaking the details was not an attempt at "transparency", it was trying to shame individual people (you bad greedy buggers) and by association try to villanize the Church (you bad greedy organisation). The leak was petty. I think some folk get a bit wound up about stuff and seek any opportunity to try and reveal information that they think will hurt the Church as an organisation, while over-estimating the shock-horror factor of non-news.

  • rubbergoose bountiful davis, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 2:36 p.m.

    Gee I wonder if this is any difference that Clinton selling her office of secretary of state, to busininesses and people who donate to her foundation in return for using her considerable influence to grant donors privelages such as contracts and monopolies in other countries. Is there a difference in getting a salary for your needs or getting paid under the table for nefarious activities? What if go to work tomorrow and get paid for my eight hours of service or take a bribe and give illegal favors? How many people in country call good evil and evil good?

  • So. Cal Reader San Diego, CA
    Jan. 10, 2017 2:34 p.m.

    Re: BrianK - I'm sorry your a little embarrassed. I am not. I, too, served a mission and shared the same information. And I continue to share the same info. with the youth I teach. The very clear clarification is that there is no paid ministry from tithe paying dollars of the church. When general authorities are called prior to retirement age and with children in the home, how do we expect one who spends 100% of their time proclaiming the gospel and building the kingdom to pay for common necessities of life-- rent, food, gas, etc.? I have zero issue with this information being shared, nor am I embarrassed in any way.

  • Duh West Jordan, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 2:23 p.m.

    This is nothing new, so what if the General Authorities get a living allowance. I worked for the LDS church for 3 years and recieved a paycheck. You can't expect to work full time for nothing otherwise you can't run that religous organization. There isn't a single religous organization out there that is not run by donations from its parishioners and the LDS church invested their money wisely so that the workers are paid through the interests of their investments, good for them. On the other hand, it is laughable that people are equating Assange and Snowden in the same breath. Assange is just publishing information given to him as is Mcknight and I have no problem with that. Snowden committed an act of treason by breaking federal laws and stealing classified information and that by definition of the law is treason. I have no sympathy for Snowden. Assange has bigger issues to deal with then wikileaks and that is another issue for another day.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 2:06 p.m.

    @ Counter Intelligence, I don't justify these leaks nor the Wikileaks. But as pointed out by other commenters, the situational ethics of condemning these leaks and lauding Assange is appalling. That Clinton was victimized should not give you glee. It should instill fear for our future as a free nation.

  • sharon-0791 CA, 00
    Jan. 10, 2017 1:53 p.m.

    Do all General Authorities and Mission Presidents utilize the financial assistance available to them? NO
    A number of years ago the mission president in our area was the son of Elder David B Haight (who was still alive at the time). He was also a financial advisor to many of the general authorities. He shared at an institute class that I attended that some of the brethren did utilize funds because they were called at younger ages and weren't financially independent yet. Others (like his father) were older and in some cases already retired when they were called. He said his father had no need for financial assistance but others who were called when they were younger and in some cases still had children at home when they were called did and actually used Elder Eyring as an example of that.
    I have no problem with it. I do agree that more transparency would be good and is needed. The world has changed and while I don't think it was wrong to not publish these things in the past, it is now a necessity in the present.

  • malty South Jordan, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 1:37 p.m.

    Seriously, is this really the first time anyone has heard of this? It's been common knowledge forever.

    For those that are struggling with this new information -- did you know that there are also people that work for the church and are paid a salary (secretaries, accountants, web designers and programmers....).

  • BrianK Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 1:25 p.m.

    I am a little embarrassed that, on my mission, I confidently and repeatedly taught that there is no paid ministry in the church. I had no idea that anyone was paid (except maybe the janitors). I believed it was a sign that the LDS church was true.

    I wonder how many missionaries are still out there doing the same thing? How many Sunday School classes are teaching that? Primary classes? That should probably be corrected.

  • Glen Danielsen Yorba Linda, CA
    Jan. 10, 2017 1:22 p.m.

    "Folks, fess up. The LDS Church has paid clergy."

    False statement. No Bishopric member or Stake Presidency member receives pay. No Relief Society presidency member receives pay. No Seminary teacher receives pay.

    I think the person in Church administration who transmitted the private Church documents is guilty of violating a trust, and should face discipline.

  • Man of letters Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 1:10 p.m.

    65TossPowerTrap: "Does that mean you would like the world to see how much tithing you pay or don't pay? I didn't think so."

    My initial reaction to reading this was somewhat dismissive, though I I do think that there is merit to the position that, just as you give only your word that you are paying a full tithe, you are likewise accepting that those who receive and disperse your tithes are likewise bound by the honor of their callings.

    Members of the Church believe that they are commanded by God to give tithing to the Church. This is an act of faith in God, and is not dependent upon whether or not your offering is stolen by a local clerk, or if you do not agree with how it might be dispersed by the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve, or anything other than your faith in the God who gave the commandment.

    That said, particularly when money is involved, the potential for abuse or misuse becomes significant. More thorough disclosures would build trust in the Church and in those who handle or benefit from tithes. It would also reveal discrepancies or mismanagement which might require correction.

  • nocarnations San Mateo, CA
    Jan. 10, 2017 1:08 p.m.

    @65TossPowerTrap, I think we are both adults here- so I think we both know that transparency is not all or nothing. I consider Wells Fargo Bank to be transparent in their practices. I put money in and I expect that they will tell me- by line item- what they are doing with my money. But I don't know what you or Linda down the street have in your accounts- because an expectation of personal privacy is different than a non-profit's transparency. If Wells Fargo started hiding where they were putting my money- I would pull my money out immediately. Such it is with the church- the onus is on them to tell us where our money goes. I think moving toward transparency is ultimately extremely beneficial to a worldwide church. I should add- I am totally fine with what the General Authorities receive from the church- and am grateful for their service.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 1:01 p.m.

    @blackattack;

    Your comment would be relevant if this were "Zion" (hint, it isn't, it's just another corporation).

  • Man of letters Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 12:56 p.m.

    In my opinion, greater transparency would do enormous good. There are several reasons for this, but one for me is that when we are left to find this information through third parties, the points of view of said third parties will influence our perspective to some degree or other. Likewise, when we find this information ourselves (through government tax documents for instance), we are left with many questions with no source for an explanation. For instance, I recently spoke with a few friends who found themselves appalled at the percentage of tithes that are sent to BYU Provo, information which they found through foreign government disclosures.

    As "AT" mentioned previously, the Church used to give a more thorough accounting of how tithes and other finances had been handled. Today, such information is more difficult to find, requiring searching through government records from such countries where disclosures are mandated and publicly available, or through leaks such as those mentioned in this article.

  • The Meliorist Grande Cache, 00
    Jan. 10, 2017 12:52 p.m.

    It's a little higher than average salaries, but given they are likely to be needing residence in Salt Lake City (which isn't a cheap place to rent) and that they left jobs which paid a whole lot more than that, I think the pay grade is completely in line. And don't forget that most of them will be giving 10% of that right back and we really have a non-story here.

    In fact for most the tithings they paid before their service is still probably more than they will collect in their stipends.

    And did anyone mention the hours they work (including weekends, travel, flights, ... .

    Nothing to see here folks. Like I said when they leaked the Church Handbook of Instructions, the reason the Church doesn't make it public in my opinion is for humanitarian reasons; it saves the world from a text that would be painfully boring to anyone not needing it's direction.

    Did anyone find anything shocking in it? Didn't think so.

  • ThinksIThink Seattle, WA
    Jan. 10, 2017 12:35 p.m.

    "You can leave the truth, but you can't leave the truth alone."

    Folks, fess up. The LDS Church has paid clergy.

  • summarizerer Berryville, VA
    Jan. 10, 2017 12:35 p.m.

    @strom thurmond

    "Every dime the church has is the result of a donation at some point.

    That is a fact."

    While your statement presents some facts it limits / ignores some practices that the church engages in that generates money. If the Church sat on the donations received instead of investing it then your statement would be correct.

    Part of what the Church has is through wise investing practices. If the Church hadn't invested the money they received at some point in the investments in which they have they would not have the money which they gained through those investments.

    So part of the money that the church has is because of wise investment rather than donation.

  • 65TossPowerTrap Salmon, ID
    Jan. 10, 2017 12:27 p.m.

    "As an active member of the church, I feel like the church should operate with much more transparency. "

    Does that mean you would like the world to see how much tithing you pay or don't pay? I didn't think so.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Jan. 10, 2017 11:56 a.m.

    Oh, now I get it...

    WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is a Mormon Republican HERO!
    but
    MormonLeaks founder Ryan McKnight is the DEVIL!

    BTW --
    Whatever happened to integrity? Maintaining one's moral compass?
    You know -- what is right is right, and what is wrong is wrong?

  • nocarnations San Mateo, CA
    Jan. 10, 2017 11:46 a.m.

    As an active member of the church, I feel like the church should operate with much more transparency. We live in an age where "secrets" are revealed- where doors should be open. I wish the church would do it themselves and if they won't do it, then I'm absolutely okay with someone doing it for them. We shouldn't need to be worried about what is being "leaked". Everything our leaders do in their callings should be above board.

  • body and health Durban North, 00
    Jan. 10, 2017 11:46 a.m.

    they are most welcome to whatever amount for the labour they perform in the world,

    let all be self reliant and work as hard and long as they do... before we comment via underhanded methods, about other peoples hard honest days work, every day

  • 65TossPowerTrap Salmon, ID
    Jan. 10, 2017 11:32 a.m.

    Good job McNight - you didn't tell the world how much General Authorities are paid - you told the world how much they aren't paid. President Eyring doesn't make much more than I do.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Jan. 10, 2017 11:32 a.m.

    "A lot of conservatives have vigorously condemned Assange and Snowden"

    Yup. They sure did. But you have to cherry pick the time and issues.

    Hannity in 2010 expressed his feelings that Assange should be in jail. Today he gives him a huge platform. Tell me. what changed?

    Situational ethics is what that is called.

    BTW, I dont think the Mormon leaks issue is damaging at all. Of course the high ranking church officials should get some money. And the amount is not unreasonable.

    But, one must admit that the circumstances between Assange and Mormon Leaks is pretty similar. And I have not been inconsistent in my feeling on either.

    All that is an aside to having a foreign country attempting to sway the outcome of a US election. I assure you that I will be firmly against that every single time.

  • strom thurmond taylorsville, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 11:14 a.m.

    "Not all general authorities and other church leaders accept a living allowance. Many have retirements, investments and other sources of income. "

    Do you have any way to substantiate this claim?

  • Oh Really? HERRIMAN, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 11:11 a.m.

    So the second-highest (or third, if you count the Pres. of the Quorum of the Twelve) receives an allowance of less than $81,000 yearly.

    I'd hardly call that greedy or out-of-line, and it makes sense that some stipend be available for these positions so that individuals other than people of substantial means can be called.

    If this were Jesus' time, the ministers would've lived by "purse or scrip," meaning, the kindness of people offering food and lodging. That seems consistent with general donations providing for these individuals, rather than having these people standing on the corner of Temple Square or asking for donations when they went out to Stake Conferences. Those actions would seem more untoward, I think, and "Authorities" putting their hand out to members would seem coercive. This does not.

  • mhenshaw Leesburg, VA
    Jan. 10, 2017 11:11 a.m.

    >>Every dime the church has is the result of a donation at some point. That is a fact.

    No, it's not. But even if it was, so what?

    I would have zero objection to my donations being used for the living allowance of general authorities. They receive far less to live on that many leaders of other Churches--in fact, there are many CEOs in the this country who make more individually than the Twelve receive in living allowances *collectively*. The General Authorities don't live ostentatiously, they get no performance bonuses, and, in the case of the First Presidency and the Twelve, they will never retire. Those 15 men will work six days out of seven, keeping long hours and intense travel schedules would wear out men half their age, literally until they die. I doubt many of their critics would be willing to sign up for such a job for the same living allowance.

  • strom thurmond taylorsville, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 10:50 a.m.

    "They aren't spending this money on private jets and million-dollar mansions like Televangelists do…but oh, how the ex-Mormons wish they were."

    Look at Utah tax records on the properties these men own. This is inaccurate.

  • strom thurmond taylorsville, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 10:48 a.m.

    Every dime the church has is the result of a donation at some point.

    That is a fact.

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 10:40 a.m.

    JoeBlow - Far East USA, SC
    Esquire - Springville, UT

    A lot of conservatives have vigorously condemned Assange and Snowden
    If there was any glee, it is the fact that Hillary got bitten by her own behaviour, including an unsecure server which was set up to keep her true feelings out of the public consciousness. The exposed info would not have been damaging if it wasn't supportive of already existing allegations of amorality. Not sure where the scandal is here. Is anyone surprised Mormon leaders get paid? Or talk about social issues in private?

    The converse is also true; how can you justify acceptance of mormonleaks but be offended by WikiLeaks?

  • Oh Really? HERRIMAN, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 10:39 a.m.

    So, guys who work six days a week, travel hundreds of thousands of miles and 11 months of the year, stay at times in hotels with no heat, travel sometimes to countries that are deprived and semi-safe, and the pay doesn't come out of my donations. Whatayaknow.

  • There You Go Again St George, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 10:36 a.m.

    It's ok to accept the work of assange.

    It's not ok to accept the work of McKnight.

    C'est la vie.

  • Rocket Science Brigham City, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 10:35 a.m.

    Usually salaries in non-government entities are kept in confidence. On the other hand You can look up government salaries and see what they are. Not all general authorities and other church leaders accept a living allowance. Many have retirements, investments and other sources of income. Some general authorities and mission presidents accept a living allowance that makes it possible for them to serve coming from more humble financial situations or at much younger than retirement age. Most area authorities continue in their jobs or careers and receive no allowance.

  • t702 Las Vegas, NV
    Jan. 10, 2017 10:26 a.m.

    I don't have a problem with making this info public. I have faith that the brethren will do all and beyond that is required of them. My job is to take care all that is given unto me to the best of my ability and donate based on what the thick book says - anything beyond that is non of my business.

  • Johnny Triumph American Fork, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 10:07 a.m.

    It's clear that those in higher Church leadership are not there to get rich. If they wanted to get rich they'd be off in the corporate world.

    As to the discussion of ethical means of obtaining these documents - it would seem the only ethical way to get them is with permission of the Church, in which case anyone or any news outlet could just write about them. I think it's amusing that the Leaks guy would be asked about ethics, posting anything that is not public information or that does not come with the blessing of the Church (in this case) is not ethical. By hosting this site in the first place he is telling us that he has no ethics about obtaining information.

  • 1aggie SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 10:07 a.m.

    "President Gordon B. Hinckley discussed them in a worldwide broadcast of the faith's October 1985 general conference.

    "I should like to add, parenthetically for your information," he said, "that the living allowances given the General Authorities, which are very modest in comparison with executive compensation in industry and the professions, come from this business income and not from the tithing of the people."

    Transparency is healthy, especially for "charitable" organizations which make truth claims and ask for donations, regardless if compensation ccmes from the profit-making or non-profit arm of the church.
    Average CEO pay in Utah is nearly $3 million. So, "modest in comparison" could be substantial. The church could've given a compensation range for various levels of authority without specific names.

  • Man of letters Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 9:54 a.m.

    I am glad to see the Deseret News covering this. It shows a level of journalistic professionalism that, I must admit, I have missed in recent years.

    Likewise their coverage of the leaked meetings with the Apostles and First Presidency was also very well written and considered.

    I am happy to see an increase in willingness to discuss difficult and challenging topics from this site. Good job!

  • skeptic Phoenix, AZ
    Jan. 10, 2017 9:49 a.m.

    The Mormon church needs to open itself to honesty and transparency. It claims to represent a god of light and truth, a god that doesn't hid in secrecy. A god that is open and available to all his children equally. It is time for the church to live up to its beliefs.

  • Baccus0902 Leesburg, VA
    Jan. 10, 2017 9:47 a.m.

    I find the article interesting and relevant. I only wish the information would have been always treated as public information by the church.

    Regarding the amount of money the General Authorities receive, I agree wholeheartedly with all those who indicated that is a small amount for all the work they do. Actually, I'm sure there are many, many employees of the church around the world that make more money than the GAs.

    I disagree with many of the stances of the church and some teachings of the leaders. But, I have to say I have never doubted that the brethren are honest, dedicated individuals in the service of their God.

  • KevinSim Springville, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 9:40 a.m.

    Mightymite posted:

    =It not overly shameful but it is still a pretty impressive salary any way you
    =look at it. This is quite a substantial amount when there is is a clear claim
    =that there are no "paid" clergy.

    On the 21st and 22nd of this month about a large number of people from nine congregations will gather together in my stake center in Springville, Utah for stake conference. The stake leadership will be there, and the visiting authority is an Elder Pinegar, an area authority seventy, a member of the Fifth Quorum of the Seventy I think, whose calling involves leadership over several stakes. None of the people at that gathering, not even Elder Pinegar, gets paid for their church service. That's what the LDS Church means when it says we have no paid clergy. Sure, at levels higher than Elder Pinegar's, leaders of the Church get paid. That's because their callings take up almost literally all their time. What's the LDS Church supposed to do, let the general leadership starve?

  • Facts are friendly Sandy, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 9:36 a.m.

    Although the amount doesn't stun me, it would be my hope that those GA's that are independently wealthy forego the salary. I may be a dreamer, but I hope that's sometimes the case.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Jan. 10, 2017 9:32 a.m.

    "This gentleman gets significant news coverage by saying: "I don't care if it's true. I don't care if it's stolen. I don't even care if it's relevant." And he has an audience? Sad. "

    Just like Julian Assange. And yet, some of the same people who decry Mormon Leaks are in full support of Assange.

    Isn't it hypocritical to support one and not both?

  • illuminated Kansas City, MO
    Jan. 10, 2017 9:27 a.m.

    "And commanded them that they should take nothing for their journey, save a staff only; no scrip, no bread, no money in their purse: But be shod with sandals; and not put on two coats."
    Mark 6:8-9

    I'm blown away how people can reconcile those verses with how the Church operates today with over 40 billion in the coffers and six figure salaries for its leaders. Blown away.

  • very_angry_man Arlington, TX
    Jan. 10, 2017 9:18 a.m.

    So, if the leaked amounts are true, then since most of them are successful professionals or senior corporate executives by career, most of them are accepting a pay cut to be full-time ministers.

  • dmb Lehi, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 9:12 a.m.

    The leaders of the Church are good, honorable men. In this talk, "Where is the Pavilion?" Elder Eyring said this about his income when he was President of Rick's College (now BYU Idaho). "As I sought to do His work, I felt close to Him and felt assurance that He knew of my affairs and cared deeply for my happiness. But as they had at Stanford, worldly motivations began to present themselves to me. One was an attractive job offer, extended just as I was finishing my fifth year as president of Ricks College. I considered the offer and prayed about it and even discussed it with the First Presidency. They responded with warmth and a little humor but certainly not with any direction. President Spencer W. Kimball listened to me describe the offer I had received from a large corporation and said: “Well, Hal, that sounds like a wonderful opportunity! And if we ever needed you, we’d know where to find you.” They would have known where to find me, but my desires for professional success might have created a pavilion that would make it hard for me to find God and harder for me to listen to and follow His invitations."

  • taatmk West Jordan, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 9:05 a.m.

    To me, this speaks FAR MORE toward the ethics and morals of the publisher than it does anything else...."I don't care" how the material was obtained. Wow. Kind of like, I don't care if documented child slave labor made these shoes, I ignore that and wear them anyway.....

  • Play Nice Herriman, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 8:54 a.m.

    How grateful I am for the general authorities. Imagine managing 15 million members. It never ceases to amaze me. Those that leave the church, just can't leave it alone.

  • TedJosiah Alpine, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 8:35 a.m.

    "Those talented individuals leading the church are clearly taking major pay cuts to engage in the Lord's work."

    They should not be paid at all. That's the meaning of the phrase "lay ministry". In all of our scriptures, the Bible, The Book of Mormon, and the Doctrine and Covenants, Christ calls on his disciples (particularly his apostles) to leave behind worldly concerns, including money. (Matthew 6:24-28, 3 Nephi 13:25-28, D&C84:78-83). Particularly poignant here is the reminder that "Ye cannot serve God and Mammon."

    Let's not kid ourselves about $120 K being a living wage. The vast majority of church members support entire families on a fraction of this amount.

  • caljimw Orem, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 8:26 a.m.

    This gentleman gets significant news coverage by saying: "I don't care if it's true. I don't care if it's stolen. I don't even care if it's relevant." And he has an audience? Sad.

  • Samwise Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 8:21 a.m.

    Considering all the traveling they have to do, and the fact that their callings take way more of their time than a full time job, those amounts are actually quite modest. The Church has always been open about the fact that GAs get a living allowance. It also fits perfectly into how the law of consecration would work if all LDS members practiced the law of consecration.

    Frankly, knowing around how much they are given as a living allowance is not really news worthy. The most news worthy thing to come out of this article actually is the fact that the head of Mormon Wikileaks doesn't care if the information he releases was obtained illegally or othrwise unethically. That, in and of itself, is objectively unethical.

  • blackattack Orem, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 8:09 a.m.

    "Those who fight against Zion shall never such happiness know."

  • mightymite , 00
    Jan. 10, 2017 7:52 a.m.

    It not overly shameful but it is still a pretty impressive salary any way you look at it. This is quite a substantial amount when there is is a clear claim that there are no "paid" clergy. The call for financial disclosure and transparency is alive and well. I am sure this this is pretty tame compared to other items that are held from the public.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Jan. 10, 2017 7:37 a.m.

    "Asked how he would feel if he learned that he was trafficking stolen documents, he said that isn't something he takes into consideration. He said his only ethical consideration is whether he believes the information should be public."

    So, thoughts on this? Is there a distinction to be made here vs the hack of the DNC stuff?

    To me, you either accept it all as OK, or you condemn it all. Situational ethics always seems to come into play in politics.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 7:30 a.m.

    @ toosmartforyou, the disregard for stolen documents sounds like Trump and most of the GOP, doesn't it?

  • antodav Tampa, FL
    Jan. 10, 2017 7:16 a.m.

    It isn't anybody else's business. Sad, pertty, and envious people will look at this information and use it as an excuse to claim that church leaders are somehow greedy, but given their enormous, global responsibilities and the fact that being a general authority is essentially a full-time job, the amount seems fair. They aren't spending this money on private jets and million-dollar mansions like Televangelists do…but oh, how the ex-Mormons wish they were. They need something to justify their hatred. They will need to keep looking elsewhere.

  • AT Elk River, MN
    Jan. 10, 2017 7:01 a.m.

    Good for MormonLeaks for publishing this. Back in the day, the LDS Church was more transparent in it's financial disclosures - devoting a portion of General Conference to describe how it was spending money.

    The comment in the article about tithing funds not being used for stipends, is really a distinction without a difference. Why don't we just agree that any funds the Church uses are "sacred funds" and note that general authorities are paid using sacred funds that reflect the sacrifice of Church members.

  • JSmithOhio Powell, OH
    Jan. 10, 2017 6:55 a.m.

    While it is completely unethical for individuals to steal and disseminate private information as has been done here, the information provided only builds confidence in the church. Those talented individuals leading the church are clearly taking major pay cuts to engage in the Lord's work.

  • KellyWSmith Sparks, NV
    Jan. 10, 2017 6:11 a.m.

    Personally, I find the revelation of the amounts surprisingly low. Notice that we never hear the leadership asking for enough donations to buy a personal jet to take them safely around the world to save more people. But this won't be the end of the leaks, not when the publisher cares not that they may be stolen. As long as he get viewers, which translates into more money for himself, he won't stop.

    After all, he may need his own jet.

    In reality, this is just another example of, "fingers of scorn pointing towards those who have partaken of the fruit of the tree of life."

    We should do as Nephi says and "heed them not."

  • The_Whales_Blowhole Tooele, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 5:54 a.m.

    yay.....another non-story....yawn.....

  • JMOpinion Orem, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 4:55 a.m.

    Is that all they make? Doctors, lawyers, business professionals leaving careers to devote full time service to the church they love. McKnights release is non news and this self proclaimed judge and jury must live a very boring and meaningless life if this is what he devotes his time to.

  • Herbert Gravy Salinas, CA
    Jan. 10, 2017 2:34 a.m.

    A non-story. Next?

  • Shuzzie53 HAYWARD, CA
    Jan. 10, 2017 12:55 a.m.

    Wow! They make a living wage. Fascinating.

  • toosmartforyou Kaysville, UT
    Jan. 10, 2017 12:41 a.m.

    Attitudes expressed about not caring if an item is stolen property is not surprising as that isn't part of the publisher's agenda or ethics.