6 months ago we left the LDS church

***Update.  This post seems to be recirculating, and while I would love to reply to everyone’s comments, this post was written a year ago, and I am no longer interested in reading any of the comments or replying to them.  Feel free to find me on Facebook if you have any specific questions for me personally.  I wish everyone the best in their faith journey and hope you find happiness and love in wherever your life story takes you.  Let’s all be happy and respect peoples differing beliefs!**

This is my story.

I grew up in very faithful and committed home. The church culture I grew up with determined a lot of choices I made over my life. From what I wore, what I ate, and who I considered for marriage. As well as how I viewed education, motherhood, and a career. I grew up with love and support and I always knew of my value in my home and ward family. Mormonism is a culture as well as a religion and I never questioned the truthfulness of it’s teachings, it just was. It very much shaped who I am today. All my family and most of my friends growing up were Mormon. I am not ungrateful for the way I was raised. I was taught to love and serve. I was taught to work hard, have clean language, and have faith in God and the restoration through Joseph Smith. My parents always loved me and wanted the best for me and sacrificed everything for me and my siblings. We were/are a good family. I always knew my parents loved the Lord and strived to follow his teachings in the scripture and from latter day prophets of the church. They are GOOD people. About as good as they come.

Fast forward to summer 2015.

For at least the past last 3 years I struggled with my husband losing his faith. I didn’t understand it. I didn’t want to understand. I just waited and hoped and prayed that he would figure it out and come back to the truth. I didn’t understand why he had to overthink everything and question his beliefs. It broke my heart. I always knew there were some church history issues but I was taught to not look into it and definitely not to look on the Internet to ready anything that is “anti Mormon”. So why was he doing this? I didn’t want to lose my faith so I figured it was my job to be the “strong one” and to teach my children regardless of what he was going through, because surely he would come around eventually and we would have our happy eternal LDS family. This was my dream.

I didn’t talk to many people about it over the years but one day Josh told me that he wanted to let me know how he felt, what he had been going through, and to just be open and honest with me. Knowing this would likely be a long conversation we set aside a specific time a few days later. When that day came, I had my dad give me a priesthood blessing for comfort and strength. I always felt close to my dad growing up especially when we would talk about spiritual things. He was my spiritual giant and I loved those close moments we would spend together. This was no different. I left feeling like I could do this, I could be the strength my husband and children needed and I wasn’t alone.

That night blew my mind. I can’t even describe the feelings of emptiness and betrayal I felt once everything was said and done. I felt like he was throwing away all the temple covenants we had made and was being foolish. The prospect of my eternal family were slowly slipping away from me and I sobbed ALL NIGHT LONG. He was patient with me. He loved me and hugged me and poured out his love for me and our children. He told me that even though he felt this way he would always come to church and sit beside me and never tell the kids about how he felt. He would still pray with us as a family and read scriptures with us. He told me that he has never loved me more and that he would always be here for me and the best dad he could be. I believed him. But I still wanted my “mormon family” so I gave him “Moroni’s challenge”. I asked him if he would read nothing but the Book of Mormon until he completed it and to pray and ask the Lord if it were true. He did. He almost finished it, but about 2 weeks into it and after a few discussions with him and another friend of mine, I decided that I wasn’t being fair. I was asking him to do something the I wasn’t willing to do myself. I hadn’t been willing to be open to the possibility that I MIGHT be WRONG. It just hadn’t ever crossed my mind! When I finally realized how closed minded and prideful I was being, I forced myself to be humble and accept that I COULD be wrong.

So down the rabbit hole I went. I knew that there were multiple accounts of the first vision, so I read those first. Then I started a book he recommended called “Rough Stone Rolling” which is written by a faithful member of the church. It is a long and boring book. It would take me forever to read. I asked him if he had anything else I could read that might be helpful. He then sent me a Mormon Stories interview with the author of the CES letter and I promptly listened to it and within a few days I had finished the CES letter as well. Before I was even through the CES letter I knew I had lost my faith. I read the essays on the church website and FAIR’s responses to the CES letter and other issues I felt I needed further clarification to. FAIR danced around most of the topics and never really gave any clear explanations to the MANY problems with early church history as well as CURRENT issues with the church. I spent several days sobbing, on my knees, and contemplating my new found information. I knew the church wasn’t true. Joseph Smith never saw God and Jesus Christ, and the Book of Mormon was not a literal book. (though it does have some inspiring stories) We were only a couple months away from baptizing our nearly 8 year old daughter and I felt sick about it. I knew we couldn’t baptize her into a church we didn’t believe in. One thing I have always been is honest. I can’t pretend. I have to be authentic. I didn’t hate the church, I just didn’t believe in it anymore. I love my family. I didn’t want to hurt them but I wanted them to know how I felt. So we sat down together and constructed a letter. Josh wrote a portion that explained his faith crisis and I wrote my part about losing my faith. We put it together and sent it to all our family. We have family members in various cities and it would be impossible to meet in person with everyone. We also didn’t see a phone call to each of them being a very good idea since word travels fast and we didn’t want anyone to hear it secondhand before we finished our phone calls. So we sent the email to family and a few close friends and waited for the wrath to be poured upon us!

One thing that a lot of people don’t understand is that this isn’t a “phase”, we aren’t “going through something”. What we have discovered and believe to be true can not be undone. I can’t change history and I can’t change science to make this work. The mental gymnastics I would have to go through to make the LDS church work again is not going to happen. I love the people in the church and at a local level I believe people are being true to their beliefs and are good and honest and amazing people. Mormons are good people! The teachings of the church like honestly, charity, service, compassion etc are GOOD teachings, but they are not exclusive to LDS people. What the church does very well is it takes people morals and tells them that they are a “natural man” and an “enemy to God” and then “sells” them back their morals in order to be able to make it to heaven, and I am not buying it anymore. I am a good person too. I am still ME. I haven’t changed. But I do view the world differently now. A LOT differently. And… I like coffee. 😉

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1,003 comments

  1. I my thoughts on this will help someone because it saddens me to see my brothers and sisters leave the fold. But I, we, still love them. For some of them, they discovered something to cause them to question their faith. It has shaken their faith in the gospel. Even Peter denied Christ 3 times. Perhaps his faith was shaken when he saw Jesus being tortured by the Romans. If he is the son of God, why does he allow that to happen? After all, Jesus worked miracles, didn’t he? But like Peter I hope those who have left, will come back to the fold.

    For those who do leave the church, where will you go? Where will you find a church that teaches of our divine worth, that we lived with Heavenly Father and Mother before we were even born into this life? Where will you find a church that teaches that Heavenly Father has a way for those who were never taught the gospel to be saved and we are the key to have that done for them by baptisms for the dead?

    Someone posted that they should follow Christ. That’s a good answer. I ask, which Christ will you follow? The Catholic Christ? The Baptist Christ? The Presbyterian Christ? The Nicene Christ? And on and on. I imagine that is a difficult question to answer. Perhaps they follow their own personal interpretation of what Christ teaches, who he is, and what he means to us. And that’s why we have so many Christian churches today.

    For me, I have to stay focused on my own personal testimony. I had to ask myself if Joseph Smith actually saw the Father and the Son. Not if his teachings were doctrine. Not if he was a great leader. Not if he was a perfect person. But did his vision actually happen. Did they really appear to him? That answer does not come without sincerity, honesty, with a real desire to know the answer and it can only come from personal prayer and from the power of the Holy Ghost. It is a personal experience that’s hard to describe. Perhaps those who leave the church did not have that personal experience to begin with or it was so long ago that they have forgotten what that experience was like.

    Another thing that has helped me stay focused is to ask myself if the Book of Mormon is really ancient scripture written by profits of God or is it fake. That meant I had to read it with an open mind to the possibility that it could be true and I had to pray for that answer. No one can give me that answer except by the power of the Holy Ghost. And along with that, did the 3 witnesses and the 8 witnesses to the Book of Mormon, actually have the experiences that they testify they had or was that all a lie too? Was everyone just lying?

    If either the answers to Joseph Smith’s vision and the Book of Mormon are true, then what else matters, really? Those 2 are what matter to me. That is my secure foundation of the gospel. That is my safe harbor from the criticisms of this world. I don’t need a testimony of everything. Can I repeat that? I do not need a testimony of everything. I do not need to have a testimony regarding every historic question that comes up or to every scientific question or to every doctrinal question.

    The book of Ephesians says “That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive.” I do not have to be “tossed to and fro” with every question that comes up. I guess that’s why Pres Uchtdorf said it best, “First doubt your doubts. Don’t doubt your faith.” I don’t need a testimony of every question that is asked. We just need a testimony about the most important ones we need to have. What we do not know now, will be answered in the Lord’s own due time. I take great comfort in that.

    To those who have left, please come back. I pray you will. You are my brothers and sisters and I love each of you. No one can promise it will be easier but it will be worth it. I know it will.

    1. Go to LDS.org and read the gospel topic essays, particularly the one about Joseph Smith and the different first vision accounts. His FIRST hand written recorded version is nothing like the first vision account that has always been and continues to be taught. I’ve come to the conclusion as to why the teachings in the church are so repetitive…because the more you are told or taught something the more your mind believes it and eventually turns it into truth.
      If every member took the time to read the gospel topic essays, more and more members would leave because of the cognitive dissonance(the feeling of uncomfortable tension which comes from holding two conflicting thoughts in the mind at the same time) it causes. In a sense the church has published it’s own ‘anti’ Mormon material. Good for them for being a semi transparent.

      1. I left the church in 2015 after finding the Gospel Topics essays and researching those topics, then realizing there were literally dozens of major problems with the church. It’s been a difficult process and there are still steps to take (my husband left a year after me but we still have to tell some TBM family members and I would like to formally resign from the church). I feel so much more optimistic about life now and I feel as though I can see people for who they are and love them for who they are. There is no more guilt or shame, but I feel as though I’m even more motivated to be a good, moral person and to serve others. Only now, it comes from within myself and not from an organization telling me how I should feel and what I should be doing with my life. I’m also lucky that my children are young and only one of them will have memories of going to church when he is older.
        I agree, I’m glad the church has finally started to be a little bit transparent, even if the essays are quite apologetic. The only thing is, I feel they were forced to write them since members were finding the information elsewhere. I highly doubt they simply made the decision to be more honest and transparent. But still, it’s progress.

      1. Because that is what they need to teach to retain members. In actuality the members are the most ignorant because of the way the church conditions their minds to think.
        In my experience, in stepping away from the church I have never felt more liberated and free in my forty years. I actually think for myself, searching within myself finding the reasons and meanings as to why I think the way I do, rather than let my thinking be controlled by the religion and it’s beliefs. I still choose to not drink coffee or alcohol but it is no longer because I am told not to or I won’t receive blessings. That choice is mine and mine alone and basically is because I don’t enjoy the taste of either. Those who choose to stay will always have a hard time understanding those of us who have left. Don’t feel bad or sad for us and we’ll do the same for members who choose to stay.

    2. Even though I know logic can’t counter faith (it is by definition not logical), I’m going to break it down for you logically, and still hope that you understand.

      Where will we go? Anywhere we like, actually. More places than you can or will, most likely. We’re not being told how and what to think with blinders on. Reminds me of a cartoon with a person seeing the sky from a hole in the ground, and someone trying to help them out of it. “The sky is so beautiful!” Says the person in the hole. “Come see it from out here!” Says the person sitting on the edge of it with a hand down to help.

      Follow Christ? Ive seen how his “adherents” behave, and they’re nothing like the man they espouse to be their leader. If that’s what it means to be Christian, then, no thanks; it makes me glad I got out. The entitledness and pedistalizing oneself over others is appalling to us on the outside. You aren’t better than me, for any reason.

      The several different versions of the first vision tell me something. If someone accounted the same story to you 5 times, with important details 5 different ways, would you believe them? I know I wouldn’t.

      If you look at the original “signatures” of the 3 and 8 witnesses, they’re not actual signatures. They were all pretty clearly written by the same hand. Ask any handwriting expert, they’ll tell you the same.

      If the inside historical accounts of events regarding the history of the church are different than the outside accounts, why is that? Why would there be so much discrepancy? Why would the inside historians need to make the emotional play to persecution to their own if the outside accounts aren’t accurate? If they are accurate, why would the church push so hard to keep that from their membership and tout it as evil? Accuracy is honesty. What would the church have to gain by being intentionally dishonest? Well, it helps them build an emotional case against logic, and leaving the church. The saying “Fake as a 3 dollar bill” is rooted in church history, and is tied to Joseph Smith directly. (See the Kirtland Anti-Bank scandal accounts from outside the confines of the church lens, and you’ll understand)

      Doubt is healthy. Its your brain’s natural reaction to something that seems or feels “off” without causing you huge amounts of distress. Citing direction from the inside doesn’t give incentive to those of us who have left. It only proves to us how hopelessly lost you are on the inside, because you can’t come forward with anything from outside that lens that gives us a reason to return. It’s like quoting from Hitler’s book Mein Kampf about how great Nazism is (or better yet, quoting Heinrich Himmler or other Nazi leadership), and how that’s the way we should think about it. We’ve already discounted your internal source as untrustworthy, so it has no relevance to us anymore. Find an outside source that confirms what you’re delivering. More like how Max Planck and Hendrik Lorentz confirmed parts of Einsteins theory of relativity. They did it without using Einstein’s work or writing. They literally did the math themselves.

      “In the Lord’s due time” is a scapegoat when you don’t actually have a good answer. It’s like telling an outsider “because it magically will be the way I want it to be.” It has no power to anyone but the believer.

      I’m not trying to convince you of anything, because likely you’ll just double-down in your beliefs. I just wanted to give you some perspective.

  2. “If a man will compare the richness and variety of the universe,” wrote A.E Housman, “and inspire his mind with a due measure of wonder and of awe, he must contemplate the human intellect not only in its heights of genius but in its abysses of ineptitude.” Some recognition or awareness of our ineptitude can prompt one to live with faith. A testimony is a gift and a talent and functions like the senses, like hearing, it is an absolute thing. You either have it or you don’t; but like hearing, it may be strong at one time and weak at another and as mortals is never in perfect operating condition and may even vanish at times. But like hearing it does not produce the things that it hears. To those that can’t hear, it would be impossible to explain to them that hearing is not a function of imagination. Many of those that leave the church view our testimonies as imagination.

    The Mormon church is not an end, but a means. In heaven there is no church. The order of eternity is the family. I’ve always viewed the church as scaffolding to construct a sound and solid building – I attend church to make myself a better person and become more aware of my blind spots and flaws. It works very well for me but I understand it might not work for others.

    I’m paraphrasing Archbishop Williams in saying that being human is learning how to ask critical questions of your own behavior and how to adjust them against a model of idealized truth about the purpose of humanity. We all act out of self-interest to one degree or another. We see the various balancing acts we engage in of selfish interests and security versus finding our way to a life that manifests something, a life that does not just solve problems of survival and profit. He said, “Our job as human beings is to imagine ourselves – using all the raw materials that science, psychoanalysis, and economics provide us – in hope that the images we discover and shape will have resonance and harmony with the rhythms of what Christians and others call the will and purpose of the Almighty God.”

  3. I’m sorry, but if you’ve never read the Book of Mormon, you were never a faithful member.

    There is a reason the Book of Mormon is called the Keystone of our religion. The prophets have counseled, admonished, and commanded us to read the Book of Mormon, and to become familiar with it and have a testimony of it.

    If you never did that, do not be surprised when you leave the Church. I hope you find you way back, but that will not happen until you finally gain a testimony of God’s word revealed in these last days.

    1. “I’m sorry, but if you’ve never read the Book of Mormon, you were never a faithful member.”

      Funny. The church had no problems sending young men on missions despite them not having read the Book of Mormon. It wasn’t until the bar was raised that this became a mission standard. Heck, even Elder Oaks himself has stated during General Conference that one of the ways to gain a Book of Mormon testimony is to bear it. Think about that for a moment. Someone doesn’t know if something is true, you tell people it’s true, and then voila… it’s now true!

      1. How many Mormons study the bible. If you read the new testament, you will find that is goes against all of what the Book of Mormon is about,

      2. About 5 years ago, I was a Primary president. I was instructed by the manual to give my testimony at the end of each Sharing Time of what we had discussed that day. I couldn’t figure out why, but often when I “testified” of whatever the topic was, I felt as though I was lying. For example, I had almost always paid my tithing because I knew I was “supposed” to in order not to rob God. However, I had never noticed any particular blessings come from paying tithing. In fact, the only thing I noticed was that I had less money, and sometimes not as much as I needed! I was supposed to testify that paying tithing would bring extra blessings, but I had never had that experience. I got on lds.org to learn more about giving a testimony. It was there that I saw Boyd K. Packer’s instruction that “A testimony is to be found in the bearing of it!” That quote left a huge crack in my shelf. An apostle stating that we should lie until we believe what we’re saying? How could I believe ANYONE’S testimony if that’s the case? It’s so deceitful. After that, I decided I was only going to bear my testimony in Primary about things that I TRULY believed. I probably sounded a little strange because I was not saying the typical things like, “I know this is the true church” or “I know Joseph Smith was a prophet” but at least I was able to live with myself at the end of the day.

    2. Read the gospel topic essays…it refers to the book of Mormon solely for spiritual purposes, not historical in any way. Funny how it was always thought to be historically true, to the point of the people going on book of Mormon vacations/tours to Mexico or South America or wherever, but now the Church is saying no it is not true history.

  4. My only goal and desire is to follow Jesus Christ. I have looked, studied, read, and considered a multitude of philosophies and theologies. I hear voice like ones on this thread that say the LDS church is wrong and you simply need to follow Jesus Christ. Ok then, how do I follow him? If not through the LDS church then which church? Every single one talks about Him differently, some say you have to be baptized, others don’t. Which is it? If following Jesus Christ is vital for my salvation which doctrine of Christ do I follow? I have found in the LDS church, the most comprehensive and full explanation on how exactly, the gospel of Jesus Christ is applied in my life. If that is not a concern for you that is fine. But I read stories like this and time and again they explain how they lost their faith, there were too many unanswered questions and they couldn’t follow it anymore. That’s fine, but then what is the answer? Was your true desire and intent from the beginning to follow Jesus Christ or to follow a religion? Because the entire purpose and mission of the LDS church is to help God’s children follow the Savior. So if not the LDS church which one? There is never an answer, just a ‘you need to find it for yourself’ response. Are there still questions about church history? Sure. I wonder some times why I read the same things that cause others to doubt and lose their faith and it has no affect on me. I don’t know the answer, it just doesn’t. Jacob, Nephi’s brother said the Jew’s were blind because they looked beyond the mark. The mark is the Savior, maybe try turning your focus on to Him, if you truly and sincerely have Jesus as your focus maybe you will be able to find the faith needed to calm your concerns about the questions you have. A sincere best wishes for you as you journey forward.

    1. I am with you on everything you said. I think though that in trying to help people in the church to accept modern day revelation we say Book of Mormon is Keystone of our religion and if it is true then Joseph Smith is a true prophet and therefore the church is the only true and living church on the face of the earth. They attack those two things which in there mind proved that the church is false simple logic. What should be done is what you probably do is to look at the whole puzzle instead of two pieces so you can see the whole picture which is a picture of Christ describing him perfectly

    2. Hi …Ok then, how do I follow him?….The answer is in the BIBLE! John 14:6 King James Version (KJV) Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. It may sound to simple or even overly profound, but pray about it. Pray to Jesus to show you the way. There are many organized churches, but only one Jesus. ~ We all have a different journey, because it is a personal relationship with the God of the Universe and He asks us to believe on His Son, JESUS. Try reading the New Testiment of your Bible. Thanks.

    3. So thankful we can find these answers in the Bible alone! All that other stuff is unnecessary… Jesus Christ paid the penalty for our sin, and gave a way to mend that broken fellowship with God. That gift alone is all we need… we just have to accept it!! People and religions around me change, but my God never changes! So thankful for that promise!

      1. Raechel, Thank You for sharing. That is absolutely the truth you are sharing. Hopefully peoples eyes and hearts will be open to receive it. THE GOOD NEWS. 🙂

    4. I understand that religion is a controversial subject and that people get emotionally tied to their beliefs. What people don’t want to understand is that this woman has found her Sovereign independent reality and you are not accepting her Newfound ideology. Her belief is hers and hers alone. It is not your right to judge her or tell her what she should and should not do. She is a grown woman entitled to her own beliefs. I trust that she has a relationship with God the Creator and that her story is sincere and already well thought out. Give her love and kindness. That’s all I have to say about that.

    5. Ryan, you say your only goal and desire is to follow Jesus Christ. I’m with you there! But then you search for how to do that by comparing churches. I don’t downplay the importance of the church, but a church is authoritative only as long it is faithful to God’s word. Your quest to follow Christ should not be about sorting through churches; it should be about sorting through the Bible for who Christ really is and how to know him.

    6. I grew up LDS and was what one would call a “Molly Mormon”. I could give a ten minute talk with a moments notice. I could recite the plan of salvation like the back of my hand. I had a close relationship with my Savior. I had a great loving family who weren’t perfect but an awesome family. So why did I leave? Knowledge is powerful. My boyfriend at the time had me questioning my beliefs. I researched and read many books. I felt deceived and hurt. I hadn’t planned this to happen. I had a plan for my future and suddenly it was ripped from beneath me. Sure I could ignore what I knew. And after I moved to Utah and married a local boy I did just that. I pretended. I went to church and participated in activities but it all felt fake. It wasn’t genuine at all. So I stopped. Years and years went bye. I had more kids and my daughter wanted to go to church but not the Mormon church. We tried lots of different churches. It wasn’t until I found a non-denominational church did I feel at home. People dressed anyway they felt comfortable. Nobody cared or whispered. Everyone seem to be there to praise Jesus and learn about the Bible. There are so many Bible stories I never even heard of. I knew lots of Book of Mormon stories. I was in awe at watching the smiles and love for Christ radiate from these people. I loved that they had coffee in their hands. I loved that the guy in front of me had tattoos even though I don’t. I loved that I recognized one of my kids pediatricians. This place was represented by all colors and walks of life. I could feel the spirit not whispering a soft voice but shouting at me!! I found the place to truly grow in my relationship with Jesus Christ. I haven’t looked back since that beautiful day. Now my husband and son attend with us. I still sometimes get teared up when the 4 of us are sitting in the pew at church drinking our coffee and praising God. This is what I waited for my whole life and didn’t even realize. 💜💜💜

    7. How about I can follow the God that I believe might exist, one that doesn’t expect me to try to make sense of why He would choose a con man and sexual predator to lead His restored church? Why do you think everyone has to follow the same Christ that you believe in? Do I have to join a religion to do this? Absolutely not. I find so much more time for introspection and spirituality when I’m not being told how to do so. Not to mention, I am free to love and not judge others for their beliefs or their lifestyle. Since leaving the LDS church, for the first time, I am learning how to truly be “Christlike” in the way I was taught to be. It’s not complicated, it’s not loaded with guilt and shame, I don’t need to worry about being separated from my family if I have a cup of coffee with my scrambled eggs. You wouldn’t believe me I’m sure, but life is so much better outside of the confines of the church.

  5. Faith is an exercise. If you don’t actively use it, you can loose it. It’s a spiritual exercise, just like physical exercise, it must be maintained. And just like physical exercise, once you so called let yourself go, it’s extra hard to get back into shape vs staying in shape. But it is possible to get back into shape. It just has to be something you want. I am speaking from personal experience when I say this. And I personally empathize with her in this story. The agony I feel for her, following her husband’s example. She wants a family so bad, a family she feels like she belongs in. And she doesn’t know any other way. The sorrow she felt over losing her husband spiritually is a sorrow no woman with children should have to endure. Sorrow can and in some cases does break people. But again, it doesn’t have to. When I lost my 17 year old son four years ago, my sorrow tested my faith. And to a point, the sorrow won. But I have become stronger because of it. I haven’t let that sorrow continue to define me or my family. I am getting stronger every day, and I have a long way to still go. I know I can do it. Because I know who my Savior is. I know what He means to me. I know what He did for me. He offered to accept my pain and sorrow if I was willing to give it up. My testimony of my Saviors love for me is undeniable. I would give up everything in this life to be able to allow him to heal what I can’t and never will be able to heal on my own, ever. I’m grateful for those in my life who never gave up on me. And I hope one day to be able to return that love to someone else.

    1. I am sorry for the loss of your son. I am also sorry that you can’t give yourself credit for your own inner strength and determination that has helped and will continue to help get you through this life. All of that, whether you’re a follower of Christ or not, was already within you. I don’t understand why so much credit has to be given to God or Jesus. Well I do, in the LDS faith minds are conditioned to think we can’t do anything without God or Jesus. I find that extremely sad.

  6. I chose love. I will love you and not judge you if you feel like leaving your religion is right for you. The LDS church has brought me and my family so much joy so I choose to believe. Too many undeniable events have happened in my life so I can never deny the LDS church, Jesus Christ or God the Father. All our hard questions will be answered one day. I chose to follow Christ and be a good person, and I love all the principles the LDS church teaches. There is too much good. I am sorry for members and non members who aren’t loving and accepting. We need to all love one another and accept people’s choices to be LDS or not to be. The LDS church is a great fit for me. ❤️

    1. I love this response here from Jo. I used to love coffee too – I will tell you there is so much more to satisfy me in the gospel truths and light though and the sacrifice is a small one. Today, I wish you continued priesthood blessings and the love of the Savior in your heart. We all can know the details of all truths one day and I know it can and will continue to be hard to endure but the Lord will guide you. I am thankful for the counsel we can receive on fear from our prophets as we all face this too from time to time. I encourage you to look on Youtube for the talk to CES by Jeffrey Holland to see if you can receive comfort that I found in his words and from the Holy Ghost.

      1. Funny how coffee is the only thing you took away from this story. This is why you and every other Member on here will never really understand until you allow yourself to consider “what if I’m wrong “. I also know what your thinking right now… Even if I’m wrong I’m happy in the Church. That is great and you all have the right to be happy and practice what you believe but I would argue that you can’t say this ahead of really being open to the possibility that your wrong. Your Prophets have said that if Joseph was a fraud then the Church should be harmed.

        Get over the coffee. This is not why she left the Church.

    2. You seem like an undeniably compassionate person and I like that. I have met many LDS people who are fantastic and I have met others that are very judgemental period I look into the church but I could not see myself there. After Reading This Woman’s story her decision is right for her. I respect her for standing up and believing in God but not in what she does not feel is right for her or her family. I respect your wishes and anyone else’s viewpoints. Have a blessed day.

  7. I was also oncein a time and place of reading up onand lostening to many things that alegedly “prove” the LDS churc is not true and everything was fake and all that was done since was from ego. I read and listened with an open mind. I’llbe honest and you will learn in a minute why, I dont remember what I read or what was said but I know it was several weeks of constant ongoing and nonstop information that I could not stop or get enough of. For the first time ever I wondered. Forthe first time ever I wanted answers from Members, the kind they couldnt give me because some were sacred things they couldnt speak of. I struggled with not knowing any more, so mich I felt ill. I finaly found scripture about asking for answers and being spacific with him on what Iintended and how to help me know the answer. So My ONLY DESIRE has ever been to fallow and serve God. So I told him that. Then I told him that I would fallow him where ever that was no matter what. I promissed that whatever I learned of his teachings in that place I would follow and do what he asked. Then I got down to the question. If the things I hadbeen reading and hearing about are true and of him, to keep them fres in my mind and give me peace, then help me to know where to go to find more of the teaching to bring me in that direaction and I will do and follow what I learn to come closer to thee. then I gave the other choice, If the LDS church is the true church and all the thing I had been reading and hearing are false, please earase my mind and make me forget everything that I have read and heard and help me to feel peace and I will do and follow the things I learn there to come closer to the. The minute that I finished saying that, My mind was completely erased of all the things I read and heard and this overwhelming feeling of peace and love overcame me and it was the kind that made me feel like there wasnt a floor under me, that I was as light as air. After pausing a soaking in that fealing fir as long as I could,I tested it and triedto remember the things from before. I couldn’t! itsnot that I couldnt remember it never happening, because I remember reading I remember having people talk to me, and I know that it was information against the church. I just cannot forthe life of me recall the spacifics of what aI read or heard! Not even a little! That was as clear as it could get for me. One thing I did believe in, is God and his abilty to answer my prayers if I know how to comunicate with him. That was the day I learned that the church is true. and the things written against it are also against God, from what I see. The one thing I have learned and that I do know, is that those who loose their testimony of the LDS church in this way, never had it. Not one of knowlage. There is nothing wrong with that ether. They are also right, that its not a phase for them. They will follow what they truly believe, and the truth is, if they aredoing that in all honesty with all their heart with their only desire being to be right with God and do what he would want them to do, then thats what they will be judged for and that is as good as some one who is a worthy member of the church. because full heartedly giving your everything you believe to God is giving your part. The only time we need to worry about a soul is if we know they know what weknow to be truth and they are lying and preaching against it and living against it just because they dont like it. We really are taught better than Most LDS members behave, but sadly most are afraid of loosing the sould of their families while in this world, and shoot themselves in the foot setting up electric fences and putting on leishes and controling and removing freedom and adding judgement to make their children afraid enough not to get snaired by the devil. What these misguided members dont realise is they are trying to conform to the adversaries original plan, by controling instead of guiding and giving choices. The worst one I hear aboit is keeping kids away from non member kids, when we are taught to go out and find the lost sheep. The question Im sure God may ask these misguided members is, how will you teach yoir children to find any lost sherp if they are only staying close to those who have already been found, and how will you if you do the same? “Love one another as I have loved you.”
    ONE ANOTHER! not ONE AMORMON! lol! We who know the gosple is true should strive to live it the way it is meant to be. not the way scared paranoid parents thought they should do things to keep their kids in line. the gosple was meant to guide gently with love giving knowlage, of God and his teachings and also help us with things he knows can keep the body sttong. God would have us guide with love! he would not have us control or chastize, with anger, because that is not the true teachings of the LDS church. Sadly anger and control are the true nature of the NATURAL MAN, so they will fall to their natural state sometimes. This is why we say The church is TRUE but the people are far from perfect at teaching it all perfectly!

  8. If an alternative were offered I would find this person’s narrative compelling. However, a series of “doesn’t make sense” assertions and “I like coffee” is short-sighted and feeble at best. What had she searched out that makes more sense than the gospel of Jesus Christ as restored in the Latter-Days? If the teachings are right and true and you follow them, you have everything to gain. If they are wrong, and you follow them faithfully, what have you lost? A life unwcumbered by weaknesses that include “I like coffee”-isms. If you can give an argument in support of what is BETTER for leading and guiding lives, than argue that rather present an argument against. You have taken the path of least resistance and seek for others to follow? Wow.

    1. Liking coffee is okay! Yet another way the church is controling the minds and lives of its followers. Causing them to be totally judgemental because someone chooses to drink or wear or say or think or do or be or see something that is different from the religious beliefs. Without realizing it, members of the church are being taught to judge, even against their own active members let alone people who have left the religion. It’s sad.
      Believe it or not…IF there is a God, because after all NO ONE really knows, members of the LDS religion are NOT going to be treated any better or any different than every other human on this earth. God is not a respector of persons.

    2. Your main point is good. To me as an evangelical Christian, the LDS Church clearly teaches a lot of great things (belief in a God,faith in Christ, in the importance of serving your fellow man/woman, and many other things), in addition to teaching some serious errors (plural Gods, the bible being corrupted, salvation through LDS Temple endowments, for example). IMO its much better to be a spiritually mature Mormon than have no faith, better to be a Mormon than withdraw from any church at all. I hope the Taylors work toward finding something even better, rather than just rejecting some things that aren’t true.

      As for what makes more sense than the ‘Restored’ Gospel: I’d challenge Mormons to find out what traditional Christian Gospel actually says, from traditional Christians, before saying it isn’t true and needed completely ‘restoring’. I think you’d find that the Gospel, as presented in both the Bible and the Book of Mormon didn’t need ‘restoring’ in the Latter-days, rather, it needed more people to try to live it.

  9. Jennifer Alvey Johnson March 23, 2017 at 7:39 am

    re-written due to many mistakes while writing the fist time.

    I was also once in a time and place of reading up on and listening to many things that allegedly “proved” the LDS church is “not true” and everything I ever learned was fake. I read and listened with an open mind. I’ll be honest and you will learn in a minute why, I dont remember what I read or what was said, but I know it was several weeks of constant ongoing and nonstop information, that I could not stop reading or get enough of. For the first time ever, I was wondering. For the first time ever, I wanted answers from Members, the kind they couldnt give me, because some were sacred things they couldnt speak of. I struggled with the Idea of not knowing any more, so much that I felt ill. I finally found a scripture about asking God for answers and being spacific with him on what I intended to do with his answer, and how to help me recognize the answer. So if you cant already see this, My ONLY DESIRE has ever been to fallow and serve God, So I told him that. Then I told him that I would fallow him where ever that was no matter what. I promised God that whatever I learned of his teachings in what ever place, I would follow and do what he asked. Then I got down to the questions. I first asked, If the things I had been reading and hearing about are true and from him, to please keep them fresh in my mind and help me feel peace, then help me to know where to go to find more of their teachings so it can bring me in the right direction to follow what I learn and come closer to him. then I gave the other choice, If the LDS church is the only true church and all the things I had been reading and hearing are false, please earase my mind and make me forget everything that I have read and heard and help me to feel peace and I will do and follow the things I learn In the LDS church to come closer to him. The minute that I finished saying that, My mind was completely erased of all the things I read and heard and this overwhelming feeling of peace and love overcame me, it was the kind that made me feel like there wasn’t a floor under me, that I was as light as air. After pausing a while to soak in that feeling for as long as I could, I decided to test it. I tried to remember the things from before, but I couldn’t! Its not that I couldnt remember it like never happening, because I remember reading and I remember having people talk to me, and I know that it was information against the LDS church. I just cannot for the life of me recall the spacifics of what aIl I read or heard! Not even a little! That was as clear an answer as it could get for me. The LDS Church WAS true! One thing I did believe in that whole time wad that God had the ability to answer my prayers if I knew how to comunicate with him. I always knew if I was clear with him and my desires were pure and were truly about following him, he would give me an answer. So, that was the day I learned that the LDS church IS true, and the things written against it are also against God. The one thing I have learned and that I do know, is that those who loose their testimony of the LDS church in this way, have just never had it. Not a testimony of knowlage. There is nothing wrong with that ether. They are also right, that its not a “phase” for them. They will follow what they truly believe, and the truth is, if they really are doing that in all honesty with all their heart and their only desire is to be right with God and do what he would want them to do, then thats what they will be judged for and that is just as good as some one who is a worthy member of the LDS church. We are taught that full heartedly giving your everything to God is giving your part, right? The only time we need to worry about anyones soul, is if we know for sure that they know what we know to be true, and they are lying and preaching against it, and living against it just because they dont like it. Members really are taught better than most Members behave, but sadly most are so afraid of loosing the sould of their families, they shoot themselves in the foot, by setting up electric fences and putting on leishes and controling and removing freedom and adding judgement to make their children afraid enough not to get snaired by the devil. What these misguided members dont realise is they are proceeding with the adversaries original plan, by controling instead of guiding and giving choices. The worst, is keeping their kids away from non member kids! One of our biggest teachings is to go out and find the lost sheep. The question God may ask these misguided members is, how will you teach your children to find any lost sheep if they are always with those that are already found, and how will you, if you do the same? We are taught “Love one another as I have loved you.”

    that is

    ONE ANOTHER!

    not

    ONE AMORMON!

    lol! duh!

    We who know the gosple is true should strive to live it the way it is meant to be lived. not as scared paranoid parents who want to keep their kids in line. The gospel was meant to teach us to guide gently with love giving knowledge, of God and his teachings, and giving choices. God would never have us control or chastise, with anger, because that is not the true teachings of the LDS church. Sadly anger and control are of satan, and the true nature of the NATURAL MAN, so they will fall to their natural state. This is why we say the church is TRUE and Gods PLAN is Perfect, and even though God asks us to overcome the “natural man,” the majority of, especially LDS people, are NOT perfect at all.

  10. This was written by a anti Mormon to to try and change a few people with no faith. I have herd these story’s for years and they are all the same just to tear down the church. Don’t believe what you hear on the web 90% of it is trash anyway. Believe in what you are and don’t take trash that someone try’s to destroy another’s faith. They try to make it sound so sweet and so believable it’s all junk and meant to destroy ones faith that is good and is right. The picture is not the family or person who wrote this article. There is anti Norman literature all over the web don’t believe it and stay away from it it will destroy what faith you have. They make it sound so good what they are saying, but this has been happening for years and years. These people fell threatened by the religion and they have to do anything they can to destroy it.

    1. That’s your right not to believe what she is saying. How do you know if she is not Mormon in the first place? You don’t. You’re saying this is false literature. You really don’t know and your assumptions or making you sound kind of ridiculous. People have a right to question religion and to see if it is for them. If you believe in something fine but don’t tell somebody else if they are at fault for not believing and that somehow they are threatened by your religion. You are wrong. Enough said.

      1. People have the right to believe what they want. Growing up in the LDS faith, I was subjected to many good LDS people. I was also subjected to many LDS people that helped me understand that being a good person comes from the heart, and how you treat other people, not religion. The LDS church has missionaries, websites, and a public broadcast of general conference, doing exactly what this article is doing, with a different message. Because someone posts like this, doesn’t make them anti-mormon. This article clearly says she doesn’t hate the LDS church, or it’s people, and it’s heart felt. If you are putting her and her family down, you are one of the reasons some decide to question the LDS church, or any other as they are affiliated. Let people believe what they want, and like the LDS church does, tell others of their experience and belief. Although to the LDS church, this seems negative and “anti-mormon”, let those struggling with what a lot of us have been through, feel comfort and know they are not alone. The LDS church isn’t a must believe religion, like all other religions, it’s an idea. Religion brings comfort to many, and confusion to others. It’s your choice, but its not for everyone.

    2. Shane, you’re an anti human. I can hear the fear in your voice, I can read the doubt that you have between the lines. You are so scared that she and many others like her may be right you don’t know how to handle it any other way, than by lashing out. Joseph Smith married others men’s wife’s… that is true, not anti Mormon. he took the endowment from the masons, that is also true. Another Fact. he didn’t “translate” anything, Emma said that he would sit with his head in his hat for hours and ramble on and she would scribe for him. Blacks being excluded from God’s “True” Church because of the way they were in the pre earth life, I thought we taught that man should be punished for his own sins??? Shane, relax and love brother. It’s ok if the “Church” isn’t “TRUE”, it’s still good, just needs to get better, that’s all. Joseph is a great dude, just isn’t living up to all the hype. That doesn’t make him all bad either. Hell, the Book of Mormon may very well be an inspired writing and “no man can draw closer to God than living by it’s precepts than by any other book” doesn’t make it historically factual. You seem like a good dude, relax, be open minded. It’s scary as hell, you’re going to look stupid for thinking you had the corner on truth, it’ll pass. The Church is good, it does a ok job teaching us about Jesus. It does a way better job teaching us about the Church, which really, has nothing to do with Jesus. Take the challenge man, read everything you can about the church’s history you’ll be amazed at what you find, the hard part is what you do next. Me, I’m still in. It’s like eating my favorite food after it fell in the dirt. I’m still going to eat it, but I’m not going to eat the part that has dirt all over it, I’ll throw that part a way and keep eating until I come across more crap. One love brother. Hang in there. No one on nothing is true or perfect. Not even 200 year traditions. That i can testify of.

    3. There is nothing ‘anti’ Mormon about this post. It is simply someone sharing their experience. But of course anyone or anything that doesn’t agree fully with the religion is ‘anti’. More baloney you’ve been fed and have partake of obediently. Good job, your blessings are on their way (said very sarcastically, just in case you thought to take it seriously)

  11. Hey Taylor 🙂 I’ve never seen this blog. I really appreciated this article. I love how brave you were in being honest with yourself. I am sure so much good will come from your family being united in this decision. My husband left the church 3 years ago for a number of reasons. I could relate to all your feelings. I won’t go in to why I’ve stayed in the church even after grappling with its sometimes ugly history. I read this article after hearing an NPR INTERVIEW the other day and thought it was interesting. It basically talks about why we believe what we do. This article kinda says you’re the exception to the rule. Way to be exceptionall! Ha. Anyways. I thought you might find it interesting.

  12. I think it is important to realize that it is faith in Jesus Christ that saves a person. I dont believe the book of Mormon is correct, but I do believe that the Bible is the inspired God breathed book which is truth. I think history backs the truth behind the Bible. It’s great that you and your husband chose to dig deeper into what you believed and why. A wise person understands what thet believe.

  13. Good for you, I left the LDS Church in 1984, I have studied most religions thoroughly. Leaving was the best decision I have ever made. I will be praying for you.

  14. God wants all of his children to be happy, no matter what. I believe that is his ultimate goal for us. I think it is very brave of you to go through this process, I am a non member who grew up in a LDS community and married into a devout LDS family, so I have varied experiences with the LDS faith community. Some are good and some are, well…. Based on my experiences, I want to assure you that your faith association does not make you a good person. Being a good person comes from your heart, with or without a religion. I hope that your new journey continues to be full of blessings, happiness, and love. God bless!

  15. I, like you and your husband, and many others, went through the same process. I grew up in a strong, religious, LDS family. I had doubts when I was a teenager, but didn’t want to disappoint my family when I was required to advance due to the requirements as I turned certain ages. I didn’t serve and LDS Mission, but have held several high leadership callings, one of those 2nd counselor in a bishopric. I tried to make myself believe, but eventually had to know. After hearing so many different accounts of how the church began, yet the LDS faith stuck with one, I needed to find out the truth. My search, for the most part, was very private. Those I consulted with told me not to look into it, “Just believe what you’re told.” Was one piece of advice from a family member. I did my research and was very confused, so I turned to the life of my father. He is a GOOD man, and was convert to the LDS church in the early 70’s. He left the church later on, and my mother stayed faithfully involved. They would later divorce, but that doesn’t make anyone a bad person. I used his life experience, who he is, and what he is to determine this, God doesn’t judge based on religion. Religion is an idea, a way of thinking, and dictates how a person should think and live their life.

    My journey led me to the research of my father’s life. My father drinks alcohol, drinks coffee, chews tobacco, and doesn’t claim any religious affiliation. He is also a very hard worker, obeys the law, pays his bills, and is genuinely nice to everyone. I have never heard him speak ill of anyone, he just listens, and is such a great listener. He doesn’t judge anyone for anything. He accepts and loves. This was the person I wanted to be. It took some time to figure out how to do this. After realizing this, I consulted with my two youngest brothers, who I am very close to. I expressed my feelings and concerns, then learned that both had recently left the LDS church. I had no idea! I also learned they hadn’t told our mother about this, for fear of how she would react. I felt so much comfort in my decision at this point. I didn’t feel alone, and made my decision to leave LDS church. I received my letter from the church, on December 28, 2015, letting me know I was no longer a member of the LDS faith. I was very emotional, and felt so much relief and freedom. In the days to come, following the letter, I felt closer to God than ever before, the feeling has continued and has grown. I felt like I could have a personal relationship with God, without a church leader in the middle. After receiving my letter, and knowing my brothers hadn’t told our mother, I called her the next day to tell her what I had been going through for so long, and to let her know about my decision, and about the letter. My youngest brother was living with her at the time, so I made sure he was there when I told her. I was very amazed with how supportive she was! I love my mother, my father, my family, friends, and for that matter, my fellow man, regardless of religious affiliations, or not. I don’t hate the LDS church, and I don’t hate the members. I live in a predominate LDS neighborhood in Elk Ridge, Utah. I get along with my neighbors, and we are all friends.

    My mother continues in her beliefs, attending her meetings and doing her temple work, and is a good person. My father is still who he is, a good man, the lady he married is a good lady, and I love her dearly. I am at ease with my decision. I teach my children to make religious decisions on their own, for themselves. I teach my children to make decisions regarding religion for them, not because someone else wants them to, or because it’s expected by others. I will never tell my children they can’t be associated with the LDS church, and if they are, I will never try to persuade them against it. It is an individual choice, and the choice should be your own.

    My wife and I separated in about October of 2015, and shortly after, went through a divorce. We have two children together, one of which turned eight in August of 2016. I struggled with her wanting to get baptized, because when I would ask her why she was doing it, “Mom and Mima want me to, they said it’s what I’m supposed to do.” My response was simply this, “You should do it if it’s something you want to do, and you shouldn’t do it for someone else.” This brings me to one aspect I struggled with for so long with the LDS church. Although I don’t hate the church, I strongly disagree with a child being baptized at eight. My daughter telling me her reason for being baptized, made me realize children don’t make this decision, their parents and leaders make it for them, then lead the child to believe they decided. They are then tied to a religion based on others beliefs, and expected to do what that religion wants them to do their entire life. They don’t get to really decide on their own. This was my exact experience growing up, and what ultimately led me to seek and find the truth, and finally decide on my own.

    This year I turned 46, I believe in God, I am not affiliated with any religion, and I am happy. I believe I will be with my family when I pass, and as others follow. I drink alcohol, and… I like coffee!

  16. This is literally my story line by line! I left a year ago after my husband had been out for a couple years. I remember all those feelings! Congrats 🙂 I hope everyone still treats you with RESPECT!

  17. I have noticed a very interesting phenomenon among some people who used to belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. It is best summed up by the quote, “They can leave the church, but they can’t leave the church alone.”
    I used to belong to the Lions Club, but through my inactivity, I have become a nonmember. I have fond memories of those days, but I also enjoy my current life of not having to attend their weekly meetings, pay their dues (and fines) and, at times, listen to some very boring speakers. Nevertheless I have never blogged about my sliding into inactivity or disparaged them. They have gone on just fine without me and do a lot of good in the world. I find no need to put them down or try to get current members to leave their fellowship.
    I am a strong advocate of liberty, freedom and agency. If you no longer wish to be active in the LDS church or perhaps even do not want to be a member, I hope you find joy in your life in other ways. Life is too good to be consumed with negativity.
    The scriptures refer to this phenomenon as “kicking against the pricks” which would be like kicking a prickly pear with your bare foot. The prickly pear doesn’t care, and you just get stickers in your toe. It doesn’t make sense.
    I feel sorry for the people who, when they no longer want fellowship in the church, become advocates of despair and discouragement to others.
    I know many people who have left other churches to join the LDS church, but they don’t blog negative things about their former church and its members.
    Here is something to think about. What if, many years from now, you find that the LDS church was not as bad as you once thought and, as unlikely as it seems now, you decide to rejoin? Following the proper steps, you can do so, but what of those who you have caused to lose their faith and testimony? How are you going to make them whole?
    My advice is, follow your conscience, seek help from a loving God, exercise your agency, find peace and joy in your life, but be careful about destroying someone else’s faith.
    Seek for truth wherever it is to be found and enjoy your life.

    1. What if, many years from now, you find that the LDS church was not as bad as you once thought and, as unlikely as it seems now, you decide to rejoin? Following the proper steps, you can do so, but what of those who you have caused to lose their faith and testimony? How are you going to make them whole?

      She is not in any way responsible for individuals and the decision that may have been, in a very small way, influenced by her. They made their own choice.
      Leaving the church myself, for many of the same reasons, it is not a decision made ‘lightly or lazily’ as an apostle once referred to it as being. More than anything a post like this helps those who have stepped away in finding a commonality among fellow ex-members.

  18. I never question my testimony of the church even when I was excommunicated from the church. I made that choice myself because I knew the choices I made were wrong and I was unfaithful to my wife at the time. That mistake took me down a path of dark road that I do not want to travel again. Even through good did come from it in the end when I met my fifth wife Julie and we lived together for year but eventually we got married. Two different denominations but she was exposed to the church. I did come back into the church and was rebaptized when I married my second wife Karen we talked about going through the temple and getting sealed to each other. But too many bad apple came into the marriage when we got together that landed me in trouble with law. When you don’t stay on on your neorological disorder medication it tend to put you on a rollercoaster ride that I don’t wish anyone upon. But I have had my issue with church since I came home and went through temple and was married the first time with my wife of twelve wonderful years and yes we had up and down in those twelve years but who doesn’t. But I question a lot of things about the church and its doctrine. But one thing I have found traveling this road with out the gospel in my life that nothing is more truer than the gospel it self. That the vision of Jospeh Smith is true whether you want to believe it or not it is true. That the Book of Mormon is the word of God written by ancient prophet here in America content testifying of Christ. This is what I found in all my studying and research there is no other truth than these. For those who right other wise are false writers that have not found the truth for them self and they are like Anti Lehi or Gantin Robers in the Book of Mormon teaching false doctrine leading those members away from light of Christ. They will have to answer for their action. I have to say I never knew a lot about the past history of the church until know as adult. Like the branching of from the church after Joseph Smith was killed. The Reorganized Church is branch of from the church. I never knew Joseph Smith pratice poligamy until know. I was not raised close into the church even though my mother was faithful later day Saint member herself she didn’t take time to make sure we got to church. If we did make church I went my older siblings that when they would make sure I would make it there with them. Not leaving me in the middle of block between the church building and home crying my eyes out. I had to seek for truth of gospel for myself to find my testimony. I served faithful mission married in temple my first time excommunicated found my way back to gospel even after all that I knew about the church member I knew they were faulty but the gospel was true more true than anything on this earth.
    What I am trying to say is even after finding out about history of the church I found myself like you and your husband questioning the one religion I have come to know to true. I asked myself “Is it still true? Even with what I know now is the Gospef of Jesus Christ still True?” The only way I knew I was going find an answer was through Heavenly Father he is the only person I trust in this world that will give me the right answer I’m looking for. I know he will not lead me astray. He hasn’t and he never will because I faith in him even when I haven’t been worth enough to receive his counsel. I know he will always be there for me. We as individual have to faith in Heavenly Father and have a strong testimony in our Savior Jesus Christ it does not matter if your LDS or not you must have a strong testimony of Savior Jesus Christ he is the key stone to why we are here. Not because Joseph Smith Vision or what he translated to be true. But have a testimony of our Savior Jesus Christ. That this is his church the only church he has astablish upon the face of earth. Why it is only true church his church is because it cares the power of the Priesthood to act in God name. I testify to you that if you read the words of Parley P. Pratt his on words written in his own book about his life among the church and things that he witness I testify to you, you will know those things which are taught are true. I read history of the church from several different members which one of them is grand father and I can testify his words speak planner than those letters that you read from CES and from your friend. I can have read accounts from grandfather Thomas Eward Ricks who was young man came across with Brigham Young and followed him and did the will of Lord save many lives for those came after them. His journal can speak a thousand times more than those Letters. My grandmother and her brother was young when they came to America as members of the church. I can have read his journal you see the testimony in him and her of the truthfulness of gospel. If I could half the member these men where oh great my joy would be. You want to sit there and base you faith on words of letter written by man that is your choice. You and your husband. But I have say to you the only way you honestly and truthful know is kneel and pray to God. I challenge you and you husband together to read the Book of Mormon together and take that promise at the end to heart. I also double the challenge and take the promise( Mathew 5:1?) If lack wisdom let him ask of God knock it shall be given seek ye shall find. Take these two promises that are given to man and use them to find you answer then tell me what say then. You have choice to walk in the light of Chirst or in light of Darkness your choice. This is all I have to say. I have found my way to light of Christ I know what I have and I know what is truth I other testimony of truth written in their own hand writing. My God has born testament to these truth to me it up you and husband. I just have to say this I love you both no matter what choice you make. You will always be my brothers and sister to me. I pray that you find peace in your soul and find what you are looking for that will make both happy. This your choice that you made I hope you made the right one for right reason. I love you both May God be you and family.

  19. I have been struggling with some personal issues So the other day I went to speak with the guy that gives the sermon is that the deacon. I am really having a stuff time deciding if I do want to become a member of the Mormon church. Yes I do believe in God but I am not so sure this is what I really want to do,

  20. I agree about things not adding up in the LDS church. I do not have anything against the people or their choices. I do believe in God and Jesus Christ! But I do not believe anyone has to go to church or extra meetings to be saved! You don’t have to be baptized in any religion to be saved! I believe in the Holy Bible! I don’t believe in the Book of Mormon! It comes down to what you believe not what anybody else! You can stay home read your scriptures, say your prayers, talk to your family about what you feel is right! I’m not a religious person and I sin everyday no matter what but my sins are not going to make me live in hell for all eternity!!! I will NEVER stop believing in God nor Christ! I will never sent them, they will never sent me regardless of my beliefs as for whether I should be baptized or what religion! As long as I don’t worship a false God or follow a false teaching!

  21. I would encourage you to read The Book of Mormon. Joseph Smith could not have written it. It was as he said translated with divine help. If it is true, I would submit he was indeed a Prophet and the Church is true. Simple enough.

  22. I originally posted this on April 21, 2016. I can’t find it anymore and I’m not sure why it was deleted (if it was) when over 900 other comments have not been deleted. I saved my original comment on a word document, as it was kind of my own little history. Since people seem to be enjoying this blog post and its comments again, I decided to repost and add my experience to the discussion.

    Hi, I went through something very similar about four years ago. Only it wasn’t my spouse who brought on my doubts. It was just an innocent internet search. I was immediately shocked and convinced that everything I’d ever believed was false, that I’d been duped. The next morning, as I was waking, my very first thoughts were, “and the elect shall be deceived.” I went to the Bible (that I still chose to believe) and read every chapter that mentioned the elect being deceived. They were all about preparing and watching for the signs before Christ returns. I knew that I was going through my experience to prepare me for Christ’s return, so either I had been deceived to believe Joseph Smith was a prophet, or I was being deceived to believe he wasn’t. I cleared my slate of what I believed and studied anything and everything for over nine months (including Rough Stone Rolling, which I read slowly, looking at it from both angles, if JS was a prophet, and if he wasn’t. I also studied main stream Christianity’s take on polygamy, watched pretty much EVERY Mormon Stories broadcast, etc). When I confided in ex-mormons to help me understand some of my past powerful spiritual experiences they wanted to also convince me that Christ wasn’t our Savior and there wasn’t even a God. So the ex-mormons ended up pushing me back in the other direction because while I was willing to deny the truthfulness of the LDS church at that time, I wasn’t willing to deny some of my own spiritual experiences. I wasn’t content just deciding what I didn’t believe, I was determined to find truth and decide what I DID believe. After trying to decide what I believed by study alone I decided that was impossible and I was going to have to rely on the Holy Ghost (I’d had some undeniable experiences with the Holy Ghost in my life, but none of them convinced me that the church was true, yet). I continued going to church and was asked to serve in the primary presidency, I felt I couldn’t say No, since I wasn’t sure about where I stood yet. I wanted to move forward with even the tiniest bit of faith while I continued to study, but I had a hard time teaching the children any of the B of M stories, so I taught other good things instead. Then I heard a new convert get up in Sacrament mtg and bear her testimony, she shared how her testimony came to be, and specifically her testimony of JS (It was the FIRST time someone had mentioned him in a testimony in those nine months). I felt the warmth in my chest, not emotion, but a physical warmth. I decided it was probably the spirit because I’d had the spirit speak to me that way before, when having to make a decision once before. I’d read all the anti-mormon stuff about how we go by our emotions and I knew I was not willing to make any decisions based on emotions. I continued in my tiniest bit of faith that had grown a little bit, and I was asked to be Primary Pres. Then one Sunday I was filling in for a teacher last minute and began teaching the scheduled lesson without any preparation. It was the lesson on the war in heaven before we came to earth. I just started teaching without thinking too much about it. Then I wondered to myself, “Do I really believe this story?” I decided that since I believed JS was a prophet and the church was true, then that’d mean I believed this story too, so I chose to believe what I was teaching. I had that little conversation in my head and even paused teaching while I was thinking about it. Then I continued teaching and even though I wasn’t looking for an answer at all, I felt light come into the top of my head and fill my entire body. It was NOT an emotion, it was NOT something I was seeking, so I knew I wasn’t tricking myself into feeling it (like all the anti-mormons think we do). It was a physical feeling of light/warmth filling my entire body from the head down. I knew it was confirming that what I was teaching was true. I hold onto that experience like an iron rod! I try to stay open to anything and everything being true and not true, but I’m not closing myself off to anything. When I see stories like yours the number one thing I wonder is, “So what DO you believe?” Do you share that on your blog anywhere? Oh, and one more tidbit, I also read every word of the CES letter, actually after I’d already heard of most of his issues and studied them elsewhere. The thing that stuck out to me the most, regarding the CES letter, is that I’d found some very easy ways to explain some of his issues and if he wasn’t even open to understanding some of the easily explained things then his letter sickened me and made me realize that he wasn’t sincere and wasn’t seeking truth, he had an agenda. So now I am in a place where I LOVE the gospel, I feel like I have a REAL testimony now and that I didn’t before I started doubting. I am preparing myself for the Savior and watching for the signs of his coming. Yes, there are still some things that I don’t understand, but right now I can’t help but notice all the amazing good things going on in this world that support the truth of the B of M and the simple gospel truths I was taught growing up. But, for all the people who have left the church and think that all the people in the church just don’t know about the CES letter, etc. I can proudly say I know about ALL the issues people have with the church, and can still say I BELIEVE, because the ONLY way to know what is true is through the HOLY GHOST. The HG did testify to me in a way that I cannot deny. It was not an emotion. I look forward to hearing how your story ends. Stay open to anything and everything and, please, if you have a post that shares what you DO believe let me know. Thanks! 🙂

  23. I appreciate your struggle. What I hope you know is that you don’t have to give up the many good things you had in the LDS church – Celebrating being children of God, loving christ, a loving community, service to your neighbor,and inspirational worship exist in places outside the LDS church – in evangelical and Lutheran and Methodist and nondenominational and Catholic churches. All the good things about the LDS Church are available, but without the errors Joseph Smith fell into (plural Gods, blind obedience to church leaders, exhaltation, celestial and even earthly polygamy). Try your local Methodist church! Or Lutheran. Or Catholic. Or Baptist. Or…

    One other thing: having read the book of Mormon, closely, I can tell you that the theology of the Book of Mormon is actually more Baptist than Mormon. The Book of Mormon’s views of God, Christ, how you are saved, and church structure, and polygamy, agrees with traditional Christianity, and disagrees with the current LDS teaching.

  24. It’s sad to see another blogger trying to make money of their exit from the LDS Church. The ads on the blog are evidence of that. Just like John Dehlin and Jeremy Runnells, the more controversial you can be the more $$$. People making such a big decision as leaving the LDS Church I hope are not doing so based on superficial perusal of difficult issues such as the CED letter or a blog such as this. I too have had challenges to my faith with these issues, but once I looked into the issues presented in the CES letter I realized how many assumptions and biases it contains. People will continue to devalue faith, and find carnal security by doubting God. The Church isn’t perfect, but it’s the best organization I’ve been a part of, and when I live the gospel as taught in the Church, I’m a better man. It provides me happiness not found elsewhere, and believe me I’ve looked elsewhere. i couldn’t believe the anger, narcissism and downright obsession with the Church among ex mormons. I wish all of Gods children peace in their search for truth, I just hope they can search for truth from primary sources and not from bloggers trying to make money

    1. “I realized how many assumptions and biases it contains?”

      There aren’t KJV verses copied directly into The Book of Mormon? Complete with translation errors? Complete with translations errors and differences from the JST of The Bible?

      There isn’t a complete lack of archaeological evidence for a Israelite migration to The Americas?

      There isn’t a complete lack of DNA evidence for an Israelite migration to The Americas?

      Joseph didn’t publicly lie about polygamy and polyandry?

      Joseph didn’t just make up The Book of Abraham after looking at a piece of common Egyptian funerary text?

      Wow. Good. That’s a load off my mind.

      1. There are reasonable answers to all of your questions. I’ve struggled with each of those questions at one point in my life. The CES letter takes only anti evidence into account, and than jumps to huge conclusions without a well thought out analysis. Just a few examples.

        No archeological evidence for the BOM? That would imply you know where the BOM took place, which if you do, you should let me and the prophet know. We have no idea where the BOM took place, so why would you expect there to be significant archeological findings? We don’t even know where to look? What percentage of the American has been “dug up”? It’s a very small percentage, not to mention the real possibility of the evidence non existing due to water/earthquake damage ( as mentioned in the BOM). And perhaps most importantly there is archeological evidence of people living in the Americas around the time of the BOM. How would one identify it as being from BOM peoples. Do you expect there to be rocks engraved with “Lamanites were here” written in English? How would someone ever know that the things we have uncovered weren’t from the Lamanites? The FACT IS WE DO NOT KNOW. CES letter makes a massive jump to a conculsion that is not supported, and would be laughed at in any academic publication.

        Next up DNA evidence. I don’t know what your background is, so I’ll try to keep it simple. Assuming Lehi’s crew consisted of 20-50 people, and they migrated to a continent with millions of people, would you expect their DNA to leave a footprint? The answer is most likely not. They likely lived in a limited geographic area, and we have no information about if they intermingled with people already there. Our understanding of the human genome is rapidly advancing, but as a physician I recognize how very little we do know. ( and what we do “know” is likely flawed, just like science of all generations). Also, there is some evidence supporting Israelite migration, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genetics_and_the_Book_of_Mormon#Factors_affecting_DNA_composition_of_the_New_World_population But again this proves nothing, just as the anti arguments prove nothing.

        In terms of the Book of Abraham, the papyri obviously weren’t original documents written by the hand of Abraham, they date hundreds of years off. But just like most historical records, the papyri likely contained the words of Abraham copied and passed down. We have such a small percentage of the papyri, how can you jump to such huge conclusions? Also, there is evidence supporting that the Book of Abraham came from a different scroll, I believe it was called the large scroll ( need to verify the name), and the scroll we have is an entirely separate document, aside from the facsimiles which as we now know frequently did not correspond to the text written next to it. Far too often we are trying to interpret the past from our time, in our language which never works. Finally, there is significant evidence supporting the Book of Abraham being historically accurate with details about ancient Egypt that Joseph couldn’t have known.

        I could go on. But as I mentioned above, there are reasonable answers to all your questions. Faith will always be required. If we had a perfect knowledge, it would be IMPOSSIBLE to have faith. Faith requires not understanding everything. I understand why people have doubts and concerns, because too many of us spend our times in the Church without really studying or reading about our history, and they are surprised when they do. There has NEVER been a smoking gun ex-Mormon argument even after all these years. There are so many theories and arguments against the Church, which shows how weak the arguments are. If there was one strong argument, that’s all that would be needed. But since there is not any definitive proof against the Church or Joseph, there are 1000s of possible reasons why he wasn’t a prophet. Joseph Smith was either a Prophet ( which he was) or he was the GREATEST con man of all time.

        To those struggling with your faith, I’m sorry! It’s such a hard thing to go through. A faith crisis takes out the whole foundation of your life. But I promise there is peace and hope to be found, regardless of what conclusion you come to. In order to prevent anymore traffic to this blog, this will be my last comment, but thank everyone for your words, kind or otherwise 🙂

      2. There is no currently known archaeological evidence for The Book of Mormon. There are no domesticated horses (or saddle wearing tapirs). No chariots. No steel swords. No massive cities featuring Reformed Egyptian, Jewish-style temples. No massive battle-grounds as described in the book. Yet, we find evidence for Clovis and Anasazi cultures easily. Is that proof that there isn’t any BoM artifacts? No. But it justifies skepticism. The time to believe something is after you have evidence; not before.

        DNA evidence is missing, even according to believing geneticists: http://www.mormonstories.org/three-geneticists-respond-lds-essay-dna-book-of-mormon-michael-ash/

        Does that mean there isn’t any? Nope. Again, it justifies skepticism. The time to believe something is after you have evidence; not before. Combine that with the lack of evidence above. More and more skepticism is justified.

        The name Abraham does not appear on that papyri. Even according to The LDS Church, Mormon and non-Mormon scholars agree that there are no characters on that papyri that match the “translation” proposed by Mr. Smith.

        https://www.lds.org/topics/translation-and-historicity-of-the-book-of-abraham?lang=eng&old=true

        Does that mean that “Abraham” wasn’t on the other pieces of papyri? No. I justifies skepticism. Again. The time to believe something is after you have evidence; not before. Our skepticism is exponentially justified once more.

        If faith is required, why bother looking for evidence at all?

        Me: “There’s no evidence for the events in The Book of Mormon.”
        Believer: “You’re right. But it doesn’t matter. I believe it. I have faith.”

        Me: “There’s no DNA evidence for Israelites in The Americas.”
        Believer: “You’re right. But it doesn’t matter. I believe it. I have faith.”

        Me: “There’s no evidence that Joseph translated The Book of Abraham from Egyptian papyri.”
        Believer: “You’re right. But it doesn’t matter. I believe it. I have faith.”

        Good enough. Nothing I can say can touch you. If you want to play in the world of science and evidence, however, faith is disallowed. Where we have evidence, we don’t need faith.

        Cheers,
        Justin

    2. The last thing on this bloggers mind when sharing her experience is to make money. The thing you should strongly consider is what the LDS church does with your tithing money. No doubt it goes toward temples and other such buildings, but have you ever thought about the apostles and how they encourage members to pay tithing when they themselves do not. They get paid by the church therefore they don’t pay tithing because there is no point. Giving the church back it’s money…no point, right. Seems quite hypocritical to me, not practicing what they preach. That should be a pretty big deal to active members. But it’s not because members think that the definition of being faithful is not questioning, especially the higher ups because they are all knowing, when in actuality it’s just being down right ignorant.

    3. By the way the ‘truth’ that led her (and me and thousands of others) away from the church was found on LDS.org. You should take a look for yourself. I did and I can tell you that happiness can definitely be found outside of the LDS church. If you don’t think so you’re not looking hard enough, most likely because you don’t want to. If the religion makes you a better person, good for you. Some people need the discipline though a lot of people, myself included, have found they don’t need organized religion to feel safe and to feel good about themselves.

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