Rock Waterman is the author behind the brilliant blog, Pure Mormonism.
I had the opportunity to interview this subversive Mormon writer. His views are unlike any other that I’ve run accros online; devoutly committed to The Gospel Of Jesus Christ, unafraid to reject cultural baggage that gets passed off as “gospel”. Here are a few excertps from his blog:
How Corporatism Has Undermined and Subverted The Church of Jesus Christ
Back in 1887, the church found itself in a famous staring contest with the federal government, and our side blinked. The United States Congress punished us by dissolving the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and seizing all of its assets, including the Salt Lake temple and all of temple square.Whether the government actually had the authority to do all this is a question for another time, but in 1890 the Supreme Court upheld the dissolution, and the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, as a legal entity, simply ceased to exist. We had to do a lot of serious butt-kissing just to get our stuff back, but there was no question that the church itself was not returning any time soon. At least not in any form Joseph Smith would have recognized. Or Jesus Christ, for that matter. Read more: http://puremormonism.blogspot.com/2010/10/how-corporatism-has-undermined-and.html
Go Ahead And Skip That Temple Wedding
Don’t get married in the temple.By all means, get yourselves sealed in the temple, especially if you lovebirds plan to stick it out for time and all eternity. But before you get sealed, do what the early latter-day Saints always did: get married first. Don’t confuse getting sealed with getting married. The sealing is a priesthood ordinance, while a wedding is -and was always meant to be- a public celebration of your union.Somewhere down the line, we Mormons began conflating these two events into one. Exactly how and why that occurred makes an interesting and convoluted tale. Read more: http://puremormonism.blogspot.com/2011/02/go-ahead-and-skip-that-temple-wedding.html
Too Bad I Don’t Like Beer
In 1843 the church’s newspaper, the Nauvoo Neighbor, advertised ale and beer available at the Nauvoo Brewery. Joseph Smith oversaw a fully stocked bar located at his home in the Mansion House. In an 1844 journal entry Joseph Smith mentions that he stopped in and “drank a glass of beer at Moesser’s”. He mentions this in passing as if it was no big deal, because to him it wasn’t.This was eleven years after Joseph received the revelation known as the Word of Wisdom, so you can’t say he didn’t know better. The fact is, beer was not proscribed by Section 89; it was prescribed.Within three years of the saints’ arrival in the Salt Lake Valley, breweries were operating at the mouths of every river canyon from Logan to Nephi. Most of the saints were immigrants from England, Denmark, and Germany, and these Teutonics brought with them their old-world brewing skills. A sizable brewery once sat close to where the Provo temple is now, and the Henry Wagener Brewery took up a massive 150 acres just across the street from where the “This Is The Place” monument now stands. So many breweries appeared so fast that by 1851 the smell emanating from all these operations provoked the city council to declare them a nuisance. Yet they continued to operate.Beer was manufactured and consumed by faithful members of the church who never gave a second thought to the idea that there might be anything wrong with it. Most would have applied Benjamin Franklin’s famous declaration regarding wine to their beer and ale, that it was “proof that God loves us and loves to see us happy”.By the time Johnston’s Army arrived in 1857, ushering in a steady stream of thirsty gentiles through Utah, things really took off for the Mormon brewers. Beer was available everywhere, including the church owned ZCMI where both Mormons and gentiles could stop in to grab a brewski any day but Sunday. read more: http://puremormonism.blogspot.com/2009/06/too-bad-i-dont-like-beer.html
A great show, Paul and Rock. I’ve read nearly the entire Pure Mormonism website and would recommend it to any thoughtful, seeker of truth. If you resonate to a particular post make sure to read the comments afterward which are excellent as well. I admire your sense of humor, Rock, and fact that you do your homework before you write something. My faith has not been shaken by evidence that church leaders are indeed mortal. Infallibility is not true for the Catholic Magisterium and it’s not true for the Mormon leadership. Rather, my faith has been strengthened by Rock’s view that Joseph Smith was a unique connection for us to Jesus Christ and Jesus Christ is uniquely committed to us all.