Welcome to MormonVoices. Our volunteers respond to public discussions and comments from public figures that misrepresent The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We encourage and direct Mormons to get involved in online discussions and thereby help shape the public understanding and perceptions of the Church. Please join your voice with ours, and become a member of MormonVoices.

MormonVoices is an independent organization that is supportive of, but not
controlled by or affiliated with, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

List of reliable sources on Mormonism

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon church) has grown from an obscure American sect to a major worldwide branch of Christianity, but increased prominence does not always lead to increased understanding. The best way to learn about a unfamiliar belief system is to ask its own adherents rather than relying on possible misinformation or bias from others. Therefore, the church’s own websites at mormon.org and lds.org should be the starting point for anyone interested in researching Mormons. Another excellent and more systematic resource is the Encyclopedia of Mormonism, available online.

Probably almost all Mormons have had the experience of a friend or colleague reciting a “fact” about Mormon faith or practice that is actually false. Many other snippets of “common knowledge” about Mormons are based on truth but are distorted or misinterpreted.

Fortunately, there are several scholars and journalists, both Mormon and non-Mormon, who have written clear and accurate explanations of Mormon belief. MormonVoices presents this list of suggested sources:

The Mormon People by Matthew Bowman

The Book of Mormon: A Biography by Paul Gutjahr

What’s Wrongwith Mormons? A Good Tree Cannot Bring Forth Evil Fruit by B. Jay Gladwell

Our Search for Happiness by M. Russell Ballard

By the Hand of Mormon: The American Scripture that Launched a New World Religion by Terryl L. Givens

Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling by Richard L. Bushman

Mormonism: The Story of a New Religious Tradition by Jan Shipps

Mormonism: A Very Short Introduction by Richard L. Bushman

The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ

Joseph Smith—History

Hymns

Many other books could be included here, but have not been for the sake of brevity. Many others have not been included here because they are not useful sources. This is not to say that only positive accounts by Mormons are worth reading; some authors above are not Mormon and yet produced excellent and accurate work that deals fairly with criticism of the church.

But some authors, whether intentionally or accidentally, have produced works which confuse more than enlighten. For instance, Stephen Mansfield’s new book, The Mormonizing of America: How the Mormon Religion Became a Dominant Force in Politics, Entertainment, and Pop Culture, aims to be an extremely thorough analysis and yet its explanations sound quite foreign to Mormon readers. It is clear that the manuscript was not prepared in consultation with a knowledgeable Mormon, which has resulted in a book full of errors and misinterpretations. These cloud the book’s good points and open the question of whether the author intended to be fully accurate or merely to tell the most gripping story. Other recent books suffer from the same flaws.

Individual Mormons are often eager to answer questions about their beliefs and will do so without turning the exchange into an attempt at conversion. Anyone curious about Mormon doctrine and its possible implications for society are encouraged to consult reliable sources and actual Mormon church members. Attending Mormon Sunday services is another excellent way to learn, first-hand, about Mormons and their beliefs. We extend our gratitude to all who make the effort to understand our faith.

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MDL.org is now MormonVoices.org

Mormon Defense League is now “Mormon Voices” and our new URL is www.mormonvoices.org. You have automatically been forwarded to our new website. Our mission is the same, but our emphasis will be to help members become involved in critical conversations online.