Blacks and the LDS Priesthood

NEW STATEMENT BY LDS CHURCH DISAVOWING PAST TEACHINGS ON RACE & PRIESTHOOD RESTRICTION – December 6, 2013

EQUALITY & PRIESTHOOD (Scriptural compilation of the Lord’s command for all to be equal and to ordain to the priesthood all who will embrace the gospel work.)
Segment 3 of the Blacks in the Scriptures DVD Series

BLACKS AND THE LDS PRIESTHOOD (A partial chronology concerning Blacks and the LDS priesthood)
Segment 4 of the Blacks in the Scriptures DVD Series

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was established in 1830, at which time, its first president and prophet, Joseph Smith ordained all men unto the priesthood.  The only qualification is that they embrace the teachings of the Savior Jesus Christ and the promised restoration in preparation for the Second Coming of Christ.  After the death of Joseph Smith at the hands of a mob, it would be three years before Brigham Young was officially named as the next president, leader and prophet of the church.

In 1847, President Brigham Young began the practice of withholding the priesthood only from men of Black African descent.  It would be another two years before any official statement was made.  Even though there was never any clear explanation as to why there was a change in course from what the prophet of the restoration had begun, the practice was continued on through the years with a number of exceptions.  Enoch Abel, the son of Elijah Abel who was a Black man and ordained to this priesthood by Joseph Smith himself, was ordained to the priesthood in 1900.  Then in 1934, his son, Elijah, was also ordained to the priesthood.  There was much speculation as to why the priesthood was withheld from Blacks, in addition to attempts by church leadership to squash the ever growing possible reasons.  However, in light the absence of the originating justification and the inequality of man at the time, the created folklore permeated the LDS church.

The practice even managed to survive through the Civil Rights Movement, and then in 1978, then President Spencer W. Kimball announced a revelation which ended the priesthood ban.  At that time, many of African descent came into the church from all over the world.  It was genuinely assumed that the problem was now officially over.  However, again in light of the lack of explanation as to why the change in course, as well as the addressing of prior teaching, the majority of the members of the church continued, and continue to teach those things which the mere occurrence of the change contradicts.

This has created an incredible stumbling block for people of all races in and outside of the LDS church.  Missionaries and members don’t know how to answer the questions had by critics or investigators, and those who think they do unintentionally reinforce the discriminatory reputation the church is labeled with.  Many who see the blessings of the gospel or who would see them, can’t or won’t allow themselves to “look” because of the inability to receive adequate answers to past teachings and current scriptural passages.

The Blacks in the Scriptures DVD series was launched on General Conference weekend, October 2007.  Since then it’s made it’s way into twenty-one countries and has been responsible for removing the walls and clearing the way for hundreds of souls to come unto Christ, and hundreds more who have left the LDS church due to these issues, have now returned after viewing.  Blacks in the Scriptures answers the long unanswered questions by simply utilizing the scriptures.  Therefore, it leaves viewers with a better understanding, and a greater reliance upon scripture study and the spirit of the Lord as each viewer prays to receive a witness of the truthfulness.  This DVD series will help those not of the LDS faith obtain clarity and truth pertaining to the Blacks and the LDS doctrine.  It demonstrates the consistency of God, as men learn line upon line, grace for grace.  LDS teachers, missionaries and members can now comfortably answer the questions that have always made them cringe, if just a bit.  Blacks in the Scriptures is a must have for any one who has ever had challenges or questions regarding Blacks and the LDS Priesthood and the relating issues.

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