Letter to William W. Phelps, 22 July 1840
- Source Note
On 22 July 1840, JS wrote a letter to , who was then living in , Ohio. Phelps had been a prominent leader in the but was excommunicated in March 1839 after he testified against JS and other church leaders in a November 1838 hearing in . In June 1840, Phelps sent a letter to JS requesting forgiveness for his past actions and asking to be readmitted into the church. Phelps’s letter was accompanied by a letter from and , two members of the , who were preaching in Dayton. Hyde and Page supported Phelps’s attempt to regain fellowship within the church, stating that Phelps was “willing to make any sacrifice” to become a member of the church again. Phelps’s letter was read before the Saints on Sunday, 19 July 1840, and the congregation voted “with one voice and uplifted hands” to restore him to fellowship. JS wrote this letter three days later to inform Phelps of the decision and to express his personal joy at Phelps’s repentance.The original letter is not extant. copied it into JS Letterbook 2 before the letter was sent.
Missouri, State of. “Evidence.” Hearing Record, Richmond, MO, 12–29 Nov. 1838, State of Missouri v. Joseph Smith et al. for Treason and Other Crimes (Mo. 5th Cir. Ct. 1838). Eugene Morrow Violette Collection, 1806–1921, Western Historical Manuscript Collection. University of Missouri and State Historical Society of Missouri, Ellis Library, University of Missouri, Columbia.
Osborn, G. The Poetical Works of John and Charles Wesley: Reprinted from the Originals, with the Last Corrections of the Authors; together with the Poems of Charles Wesley Not before Published. Vol. 6. London: Wesleyan-Methodist Conference Office, 1870.