Leaving L.D.S. Church

From The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to Independent Fundamentalist Mormon

Gary, Vicky & baby at LDS chapel

1985 – Gary, Vicky & baby at LDS chapel.

Gary, Vicky & family at Rock

1998 – Gary, Vicky & family at Rock

For those who have asked me “WHY?” I left The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints — here you go.  (There are more details in the 7 page letter that I wrote to my family nearly thirty-one years ago).

To begin with, it was not easy leaving my security within the LDS faith.  During this transition, I was confused, sad, and angry.  I was also concerned for all my loved ones that I was leaving behind (probably similar to how my LDS family members feel about me today.)

I was a young mother of two small children when my husband started meeting with an LDS couple who knew their church history.  Although they believed in the early teachings of Mormonism, and that the LDS Church had gone astray, they remained members (possibly waiting for the “setting in order”).  During this time, I was teaching in the Young Women’s program and studying the scriptures, and much of what my husband was teaching me made sense.  While I was reading about the last days and horrible calamities around the corner, and how we would prepare for the Lord’s Second Coming, Gary was teaching me about polygamy and gathering to the tops of the mountains.

Before leaving the mainstream LDS Church, Gary and I traveled to Utah to meet Ogden Kraut, and his plural wife, Anne Wilde.  It was at Anne’s home that we learned more about the “fullness of the gospel” and what was required of God’s chosen people in this last dispensation (polygamy, gathering, United Order, Law of Consecration, wearing long garments, etc.).  After reading several of Ogden’s books, we moved to Utah and became Independent Fundamentalist Mormons.

During my transition into Mormon Fundamentalism, I wrote a letter to my family describing why we were leaving the mainstream L.D.S. Church to follow early teachings of Mormonism.  This letter is packed with good information for LDS members interested in learning why many individuals leave the mainstream church to follow early teachings of Mormonism.

I find my type-written letter disturbing. It is no surprise that I ended up joining a fundamentalist group and living in a rock, preparing for the last days.

There were so many factors that played into my departure from the mainstream LDS Church.  During this time, I had a temple recommend meeting with my bishop that did not go very well, especially after he asked me if I sustained Ezra Taft Benson as a “prophet, seer, and revelator.” I told my bishop that President Benson didn’t prophesy, have a seer stone or see into the future; he hadn’t even revealed any new scriptures. I could only sustain President Benson as a “President” of the LDS Church.  I was asked to go home and pray.

No matter where I turned for answers, including turning to religious leaders and away from my husband if he was leading me astray, no one could offer me intelligent answers.

My letter leaving the LDS Church has the historical context needed for an open-minded individual, who can leave their biases behind, to follow a young inquisitive couple out of the mainstream LDS Church into Mormon Fundamentalism.  Although I no longer believe in Mormonism and its early teachings, I continue to believe that the Mormon Fundamentalists are living closer to the original teachings of Mormonism than LDS members.  On the contrary, LDS members are following the laws of the land by not living polygamy.

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