Amidst a flurry of national news coverage about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' transparency in discussing its early history, including such controversial subjects as plural marriage, the LDS Church released a statement today shedding light on its purpose for releasing nearly a dozen in-depth essays on topics of special public interest.
These essays, according to the statement, "are meant as a personal resource for members as they study and teach about the history and doctrine" of the LDS Church. In addition, the church acknowledges that "we live in a world where there is so much information available on every topic. And particularly in the age of the Internet, there are both good and bad sources of information. As a church, it's important for us to research and provide official, reputable, historically accurate information about our history and doctrine."
The statement also provides specific context for its essays on the long discontinued practice of polygamy or plural marriage, some of the most discussed essays in other news outlets. It notes the recent essays gather what has been "known among long-term and well-read members, historians and Church leaders ... into a single location as a convenient means of placing these resources in the hands of all members."
In total, the LDS Church has released 11 essays on history and doctrine over the past year, each addressing LDS topics that have generated some scholarly debate and online polemics.
Read the LDS Church's complete response on mormonnewsroom.org.