John Corrill, A Brief History of the Church of Christ of Latter Day Saints, 1839

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction
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But there were many obstacles in the way. The dissenters kept up  a kind of secret opposition to the presidency and church. They  would occasionally speak against them, influence the minds of the  members against them, and occasionally correspond with their ene mies abroad, and the church, it was said, would never become pure  unless these dissenters were routed from among them. Moreover,  if they were suffered to remain, they would destroy the church. Se cret meetings were held, and plans contrived, how to get rid of them.  Some had one plan, and some another, but there was a backwardness  in bringing it about, until delivered from the pulpit  what I call the salt sermon; “If the salt have lost its savour, it is  thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out and trodden under  the feet of men,” was his text, and although he did not call names in  his sermon, yet it was plainly understood that he meant that dissen ters, or those who had denied the faith, ought to be cast out, and lite rally trodden under foot. He, indirectly, accused some of them with  crime.
This sermon had the desired effect. Excitement was produced,  in the church, and, suffice it to say that, in three or four days, several  of the dissenters became much alarmed, and fled from the place in  great fright, and their families soon followed, but their property was  attached for debt. Necessity compelled others of the dissenters to  confess and give satisfaction to the church. This scene I looked upon  with horror, and considered it as proceeding from a mob spirit. Thus  the work of purifying was commenced, and now it must be carried  out. Another thing was in the way; there was a good deal of mur muring, finding fault, and complaining against the first presidency, and  others of the leaders, for various causes, but, more especially, on ac count of money which the presidency had borrowed from time to  time, during the building of the in , and the car rying on their mercantile and banking operations. Some of the debts  had been paid, but several remained unpaid, and many who had lost  their farms, in paying the debts, felt bad, and they mur mured and complained to that degree that the presidency and church  got tired of hearing it, until they became determined to have it stop ped.

Chapter 17

CHAPTER XVII.
 
Secret society formed—Presidency upheld—Former revelations referred to—Organi zation——Intentions—Perversions—Object of gathering—Tyran ny exercised—New constitution—Names of society and numbers.
 
Some time in June last [1838], a few individuals began to form a society  that should be agreed in all things. In order to this, they bound them selves under very close restrictions. As this society began to increase  they secretly entered into solemn covenants, before God, and bound  themselves under oath to keep the secrets of the society, and cove [p. 30]
But there were many obstacles in the way. The dissenters kept up a kind of secret opposition to the presidency and church. They would occasionally speak against them, influence the minds of the members against them, and occasionally correspond with their enemies abroad, and the church, it was said, would never become pure unless these dissenters were routed from among them. Moreover, if they were suffered to remain, they would destroy the church. Secret meetings were held, and plans contrived, how to get rid of them. Some had one plan, and some another, but there was a backwardness in bringing it about, until delivered from the pulpit what I call the salt sermon; “If the salt have lost its savour, it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out and trodden under the feet of men,” was his text, and although he did not call names in his sermon, yet it was plainly understood that he meant that dissenters, or those who had denied the faith, ought to be cast out, and literally trodden under foot. He, indirectly, accused some of them with crime.
This sermon had the desired effect. Excitement was produced, in the church, and, suffice it to say that, in three or four days, several of the dissenters became much alarmed, and fled from the place in great fright, and their families soon followed, but their property was attached for debt. Necessity compelled others of the dissenters to confess and give satisfaction to the church. This scene I looked upon with horror, and considered it as proceeding from a mob spirit. Thus the work of purifying was commenced, and now it must be carried out. Another thing was in the way; there was a good deal of murmuring, finding fault, and complaining against the first presidency, and others of the leaders, for various causes, but, more especially, on account of money which the presidency had borrowed from time to time, during the building of the in , and the carrying on their mercantile and banking operations. Some of the debts had been paid, but several remained unpaid, and many who had lost their farms, in paying the debts, felt bad, and they murmured and complained to that degree that the presidency and church got tired of hearing it, until they became determined to have it stopped.

Chapter 17

CHAPTER XVII.
 
Secret society formed—Presidency upheld—Former revelations referred to—Organization——Intentions—Perversions—Object of gathering—Tyranny exercised—New constitution—Names of society and numbers.
 
Some time in June last 1838, a few individuals began to form a society that should be agreed in all things. In order to this, they bound themselves under very close restrictions. As this society began to increase they secretly entered into solemn covenants, before God, and bound themselves under oath to keep the secrets of the society, and cove [p. 30]
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