Welcome to MormonThink


MormonThink is concerned with truth. As such, we attempt to correct misinformation about the LDS Church made by critics and defenders of the faith (including the Church itself). We present a range of perspectives and viewpoints, privileging those we believe are the most accurate, consistent and empirically valid.

Please start by reading the Introduction.

“Well, we have nothing to hide. Our history is an open book. They may find what they are looking for, but the fact is the history of the church is clear and open and leads to faith and strength and virtues.”

President Gordon B. Hinckley
(Prophet, Seer & Revelator)

~ Dec. 25, 2005 interview with The Associated Press


Top Current Stories


Video on the Church essays - 1/29/15

Brother Jake made an entertaining and informative 4-minute video on the Church's essays. Of particular note is he makes mention of how the Polygamy in Kirtland and Nauvoo essay is not listed with the other essays on the Church's website: Brother Jake Presents: A Gospel Topics Commercial


Salt Lake Tribune: Podcaster’s exploration into 'difficult' LDS issues lands Dehlin disciplinary hearing - 1/16/15


NYT: John Dehlin, Mormon Critic, Facing Excommunication - 1/15/15


MormonThink's response to Church Essay on Joseph Smith's Polygamy - 1/8/15

An editor at MormonThink has compiled a response to the LDS essay entitled 'Plural Marriage in Kirtland & Nauvoo' which was published on the LDS.org website in Oct 2014. Please read Plural Marriage in Kirtland & Nauvoo - Response to LDS.org


Indian Origins and the Book of Mormon - Dan Vogel - 12/16/14

Award-winning author Dan Vogel has released his latest video on Mormonism.

The purpose of this video is to explore the intellectual and theological discourse about Indian origins in the New World that preceded Joseph Smith’s dictation of the Book of Mormon in 1829 and how the Book of Mormon may have participated in that discussion.

Indian Origins and the Book of Mormon - Dan Vogel


What the “Mormon Moment” Actually Accomplished - 12/2/14

Many Americans are still wary of the church. But Mormon culture is changing. Read full article


Huffington Post -  What Do We Know About Mormon Leader Joseph Smith's Wives? - 12/1/14

After officially acknowledging earlier this month that founder Joseph Smith had multiple wives, some of them as young as 14, officials at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are now facing two important questions.

Who were these women, and what are their stories? Read full article


MormonThink's Response to the December 2014 Ensign article "The Answer to All the Hard Questions"

Continuing with the recent efforts to shore up the devout who may be entertaining doubts, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint's December 2014 Ensign issue published "The Answer to All the Hard Questions," by R. Val Johnson, MormonThink has provided a response to it


Avery Wright has added a new piece:

"The Flat Earth Society" - You are being directed to the top of the page so you can look at all of Avery's writings - The Flat earth Society is the last item in the TOC.


Daily Beast article: God vs. the Internet. And the Winner is… - 11/17/14

The Daily Beast has a new piece up, "God vs. the Internet. And the Winner is…," by Michael Schulson (http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/11/16/god-vs-the-internet-and-the-winner-is.html) that touches on the recent LDS essays. His main focus is on how the internet has created a "crisis of authority" because of the shift in who frames the narrative of a religion. He features Mormonism and how the internet has caused the Church to make changes in how much information they disseminate to the general membership. MormonThink is also mentioned in the article and is linked to twice.

To read article: God vs the Internet


MormonThink's Responses to Current Issues - 11/14/14

We have added a new section where MT editors respond to some of the current issues effecting the Church. Read the latest:

Response to those who say members should have known more about Joseph Smith's polygamy


MormonThink's response to the Newsroom: The official publication for news media, opinion leaders and the public article, Church Provides Context for Recent Media Coverage on Gospel Topics Pages, November 11, 2014.


NY Times Article: It's Official: Mormon Founder Had Up to 40 Wives - 11/11/14

Mormon leaders have acknowledged for the first time that the church’s founder and prophet, Joseph Smith, portrayed in church materials as a loyal partner to his loving spouse Emma, took as many as 40 wives, some already married and one only 14 years old.

Read Full Article


Dan Vogel video on the Book of Mormon Witnesses - 10/24/14

Award-wining author Dan Vogel has just come out with his latest video on the Book of Mormon witnesses. This is the second of two parts. Dan examines the Three Book of Mormon witnesses and does an in-depth analysis of their testimony.

In this video, I discuss how relying on the published Testimony of Eight Witnesses has led many to incorrectly assume the experience of the eight men was completely natural and physical. I present evidence that the eight witnesses saw the plates in vision and offer four possible scenarios how that occurred. I also discuss the apologetic resistance to new evidence regarding the experiences of the eight witnesses.

Book of Mormon Witnesses - Pt 2 - The Eight - Dan Vogel

Book of Mormon Witnesses - P1 1 - The Three - Dan Vogel

Other Videos by Dan Vogel on the Witnesses


Brent Metcalfe on mormonstories - 10/15/14

Mormon historian Brent Metcalfe did a series of 6 podcasts on mormonstories. It is one of the best podcasts we have heard. Brent gives firsthand insights into the Mark Hofmann bombings, interactions with General Authorities from his experience working in the Security Dept of the Church and examining the Book of Mormon. The podcasts are numbered 493-494, 497-498 & 499-499b. Link to mormonstories podcasts



New Approaches to the Book of Mormon: Explorations in Critical Methodology by Brent Metcalfe

With the very high interest in Brent Metcalfe's six-part podcast on mormonstories, readers may want to check out Brent's ground-breaking work from 1993 on the Book of Mormon. Brent edited a series of essays written by some of the brightest experts on the BOM including Dan Vogel, Stan Larson and Edward H. Ashment.

The book is also available for free online at Signature Books.

It should be noted that the printed edition is preferred as the online version does contain some mistakes per Brent.


Mormon leaders spread word about controversial essays - 9/24/14

Salt Lake Tribune article:

For about a year, the LDS Church has been posting on its website carefully worded, scholarly essays about touchy topics from the faith’s history and theology.

Did Mormons really abandon polygamy in 1890? Did Brigham Young order the Mountain Meadows Massacre? Do Latter-day Saints believe a man can become like God? How did the church’s ban on black men holding the priesthood come to be? Read full article




For other stories, see What's new? and Latest News on Mormonism