Mormon visits: Episode 1
A few weeks ago I spotted a couple of young guys riding bikes. They were wearing cycling helmets, black trousers, and white shirts with ties. I knew instantly that they were Mormons.
I’ve little or no knowledge of Mormonism so I thought it might be a good opportunity to learn. I stopped the car and introduced myself. I told them in advance that it is very unlikely I will become a Mormon, and that I am just interested in what they believe plus why they believe it. I told them I am more interested in their brains than their religion. I gave them my address and we arranged a day/time to visit me.
This was two weeks ago. In our first meeting we just chatted about every day life, where they were born etc. At their age they are sent to a foreign country and expected to proselytize to people all day every day, I learned that they get to speak to family once a week via Skype, but other than that they are told not to use the Internet at all. They completely immerse themselves in what they are doing. I wanted to spend some time talking to personalities instead of the scripts they had been taught, in the hope it would give them a bit of “me time” back.
We discussed the story of how Jesus’s disciples had all been killed except John, who had been interned on an Island to spend the rest of his natural life trapped. I was also told about how Joseph Smith had been shown where some gold plates were which he translated into English. Our already over-run meeting came to an end with the following
- Next week we will discuss the history between John and Joseph Smith.
- We will discuss what was on the plates, who said they were there, and how they were translated.
They claimed that the BoM was perfect and unaltered. I asked if this meant there was only one edition. They told me there were many, but they only contained printing changes (grammar/spelling/typefaces etc). They left agreeing that if *we* could see a potential misunderstanding in the text then an all knowing God would also be able to see them and would have written the text differently rather than having humans change it at a later date thus making it look like a man-made religion that evolves.
They closed with a prayer just as they had opened with one, and left. I refused their offer of a book of Mormon, I told them I would buy an 1830’s edition reprint.