Thursday, August 28, 2008

If history doesn't matter...

This is a letter that I have wanted to post for a few days now but I did not feel right about using someone else’s work. But, as I read it again, it is just too spot-on to not post. It was written on by a lady named “howdimissthat”. She is the wife of a Bishop and has doubted the church for a while now. She just started to discuss her issues with her husband because it came time to renew her temple recommend and she could not do it unless she lied and she was not willing to do that. I respect her honesty and love reading what she has to say. This letter is in response to her sister’s comments on how the history of the LDS church is not important. It is with her permission that I am using this.

Yes, history is history, but the church is based and exists because of its history. Without the grove, the prayer, we have nothing, no history no church. As Pres. Hinckley said either the first vision happened or it didn't, you can look up the rest of that quote if you would like but it is history so maybe it doesn't matter anymore. The church is based on its history. A testimony is based on truth. If the history has been tampered with, and the church exists because of the history, then what do we base the testimony on? The history is our salvation. Every revelation is based on its history, when it came, how it came, who was told, what was said, that's its history, no history means it never happened. How many times have we been told if we don't know the history of our country we are bound to repeat the same mistakes from the past. History is critical to keep us from repeating the same mistakes. If history doesn't matter then a good portion of the BoM was unnecessary, it is a history of the Lamanites, only the doctrine should have been passed on if the history wasn't important to our salvation. The Bible, a history book, is it unimportant to our salvation too?

I don't expect perfection or a pretty past but I do expect honesty. The history isn't the biggest problem; it's that I have never been told the true history, just the white washed version. If history doesn't matter why change it to make it more palatable? Leave it as it was originally recorded. Changing it changes everything. The lesson manuals are full of history, their version, not the facts. If history doesn't matter why bring it up at all, anywhere? If history doesn't matter why re-enact the pioneer trek. If history doesn't matter why did the church build a museum to contain its history or a new library? If history doesn't matter why repent, it's history and history doesn't matter. If history doesn't matter why are we told to keep a journal, it is a history and of no value and there is nothing to be learned from it. If history doesn't matter why are we continually told to follow those who have gone before us and learn from their history? Or are we to handpick only the best stories and let the rest go as unimportant. Or should we change the history to better reflect what we prefer to believe?

Satan is the father of all lies, we have been told lies, I did not create the lies I only discovered them but I am paying a high price for not accepting the lies, being honest with myself and with my family. I couldn't quote all the scripture about the importance of being honest and the importance of honesty to our salvation; do those scriptures exclude the leaders? Is the beginning of the 13th article of faith still in effect? Are the ordinary members the only ones expected to be honest with our fellow men?

I have only been offended by the lack of honesty in presenting our history. It is shameful we exist because of our history and then deny its importance when it becomes a problem. This has nothing to do with the trust and love I have for my husband. This has nothing to do with the trust I have in the Lord. This has nothing to do with expecting perfection, I do not expect perfection. I do expect honesty; I don't think that is too much to ask from men of God.

I could not agree more!


  1. What a powerful letter.

    This was one line that stuck out in my mind. I feel the exact same way.
    "I did not create the lies I only discovered them but I am paying a high price for not accepting the lies, being honest with myself and with my family."

    Thank you for sharing this letter.

  2. If history doesn't matter my grandmother has wasted years and years doing extensive family geneology. I guess I'm wasting time doing journaling, scrapbooking, all of my photography. Who cares what they looked like way back when, right? No, I'm sorry I can not agree that history doesn't matter. I think it does matter and it matters quite a bit! When someone commits a crime the court not only looks at what they have done at that moment but also at their past history before deciding anything. When you go to get a home loan to buy a house they check your credit history before approving you and for how much, etc. Why? Because we can learn a lot from history!

  3. Opps! I left the last comment and didn't sign it.


  4. I think it's embarrassing history that doesn't matter.

  5. Give pops a medal, I think he's hit the nail on the head.

    Wow I wasted years in school with World History, European History, American History... who cares what those rebel fighters did in the 1770's? Doesn't matter -we're a country now right? And the thousands of people who've died since to maintain our country, no need to remember that.

    I think what her sister is really saying is TRUTH doesn't matter to her. Excellent letter Soy Yo, thanks for posting.

  6. Wow, that is a wonderful letter. Very powerful. And if history doesn't matter, why are we told to preserve our family history and do work for the dead?

    Thanks for sharing- fabulous.

  7. Wow. I agree with 'your wife' - very powerful.

    thanks for sharing

    -from an interested follower or your blog