Native Americans


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“And the skins of the Lamanites [Native Americans] were dark, according to the mark which was set upon their fathers, which was a curse upon them because of their transgression and their rebellion against their brethren, who consisted of Nephi, Jacob, and Joseph, and Sam, who were just and holy men.”

- Book of Mormon, Alma, chapter 3, verse 6

“After the people again forgot the Lord and dissensions arose, some of them took upon themselves the name Lamanites and the dark skin returned. When the Lamanites fully repent and sincerely receive the gospel, the Lord has promised to remove the dark skin. The Lord declared by revelation that, ‘before the great day of the Lord shall come, Jacob shall flourish in the wilderness, and the Lamanites shall blossom as a rose.’ The dark skin of those who have come into the Church is no longer to be considered a sign of the curse. Many of these converts and delightsome and have the Spirit of the Lord. Perhaps there are some Lamanites today who are losing the dark pigment. Many of the members of the Church among the Catawba Indians of the South could readily pass as of the white race; also in other parts of the South.”

- Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith, Answers to Gospel Questions, v. 3, p. 123, 1953

“The day of the Lamanites is nigh. For years they have been growing delightsome, and they are now becoming white and delightsome, as they were promised. In this picture of the twenty Lamanite missionaries, fifteen of the twenty were as light as Anglos; five were darker but equally delightsome. The children in the home placement program in Utah are often lighter than their brothers and sisters in the hogans on the reservation.... At one meeting a father and mother and their sixteen-year-old daughter were present, the little member girl-sixteen sitting between the dark father and mother, and it was evident she was several shades lighter than her parents on the same reservation, in the same Hogan, subject to the same sun and wind and weather. There was the doctor in a Utah city who for two years had had an Indian boy in his home who stated that he was some shades lighter than the younger brother just coming into the program from the reservation. These young members of the Church are changing to whiteness and delightsomeness. One white elder jokingly said that he and his companion were donating blood regularly to the hospital in the hope that the process might be accelerated.”

- Prophet Spencer W. Kimball, General Conference, Oct. 1960

“The Lord has never indicated that black skin came because of being less faithful. Now, the Indian; we know why he has changed, don’t we? The Book of Mormon tells us that; and he has a dark skin, but he has promise there that through faithfulness, that they all again become a white and delightsome people.”

- Apostle LeGrand Richards, Interview by Wesley P. Walters and Chris Vlachos, Aug. 16, 1978, Church Office Building, available online at: http://www.lds-mormon.com/legrand_richards.shtml

“Verily, I say unto you, that the wisdom of man, in his fallen state, knoweth not the purposes and the privileges of my hold priesthood, but ye shall know when ye receive a fullness by reason of the anointing: For it is my will, that in time, ye should take unto you wives of the Lamanites and Nephites, that their posterity may become white, delightsome and just, for even now their females are more virtuous then the gentiles.”

- Prophet Joseph Smith, Jr., 1831 revelation, recorded in a letter from W.W. Phelps to Brigham Young, dated August 12, 1861

“In addition to this, and to co-operate with it, it has been made known by revelation, that it will be pleasing to the Lord, should they forma matrimonial alliance with the Natives; and by this means the Elders, who comply with the thing so pleasing to the Lord, and for which the Lord has promised to bless those who do it abundantly, gain a residence in the Indian territory, independent of the agent. It has been made known to one, who has left his wife in the state of N.Y. that he is entirely free from his wife, and he is at liberty to take him a wife from among the Lamanites. It was easily perceived that his permission was perfectly suited to his desires. I have frequently heard him state, that the Lord had made it known to him, that he is as free from his wife as from any other woman; and the only crime that I have ever heard alleged against her is, she is violently opposed to Mormonism.”

- Ezra Booth, Ohio Star, December 8, 1831

“Martin Harris... claimed he had a revelation when he first came to Kirtland for him to go to Missouri, and obtain a Lamanite squaw for a wife to aid them in propagating Mormonism. Martin told me soon after Joseph, the prophet, left Kirtland, that two years before, he had told him that as his wife had left him he needed a woman as other men.”

- S.F. Whitney, Naked Truths About Mormonism, 1888, p. 3

“We are now going to the Lamanites, to whom we intend to be messengers of instruction... We will show them that in consequence of their transgressions a curse has been inflicted upon them – in the darkness of their skins. We will have intermarriages with them, they marrying our young women, and we taking their young squaws to wife. By these means it is the will of the Lord that the curse of their color shall be removed and they restored to their pristine beauty...”

- Prophet Brigham Young, quoted in The Abominations of Mormonism Exposed, pp. 58-59

“Vine Deloria Jr., a Sioux Indian and political science professor at the University of Arizona, made a similar observation. ‘...Mormons and Indians share a common heritage, but he complained Mormons are taking Indian children off reservations and indoctrinating them in the church's beliefs.’
“Deloria continued by stating, ‘...he sees great parallels between Mormons and Indians in the 1840's to the 1890's when the federal government tried to break down their social structures.’ He said the Mormon Church Placement Program threatens Indians."

- Salt Lake Tribune, April 9, 1984

“We are greatly conscious of the fact that among the Lamanites – as well as among all peoples of other countries – we have a responsibility to see that the gospel touches their hearts and minds and that they understand it.”

- Prophet Spencer W. Kimball, October 1980 General Conference, Ensign, November 1980, p. 76

“... when non-Mormon Indians are asked about the program [LDS placement program for Native Americans], their response is invariably bitter and hostile as they explain that many Indians view the program as a form of kidnapping that takes away the Indian community’s most prized people, its youth.”

- Bob Gottlieb and Peter Wiley, “The Kids Go Out Navaho, Came Back Donny and Marie,” Los Angeles Magazine, December 1979, p. 140

"That tribe, or most its people, are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon). Those Indians, at least as many
as I have observed, were white and delightsome; as white and fair as any group of citizens of our country. I know of no prophecy, ancient or
modern, that has had a more literal fulfillment."

- George Edward Clark, quoted in McKeever and Johnson, "Pure and Deligtsome," Mormonism Researched, Spring 1994, p. 5

"The Lamanites [Native Americans], now a down-trodden people, are a remnant of the house of Israel. The curse of God has followed them as it has done the Jews, though the Jews have not been darkened in their skin as have the Lamanites."

- Prophet Wilford Woodruff, Journal of Discourses, v. 22, p. 173