Close X

USA Today: Mormon president can do no wrong to religion's members

March 31, 2011
source: USA Today

Photo from USA Today.

MR says: Written in anticipation of general conference, the author tries to explain the role of a modern-day prophet.

Mormon President Thomas S. Monson, his two right-hand men and 12 apostles will take to the podium at this weekend's General Conference and offer sermons that many Mormons will treat like faxes from God.

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints consider these 15 men "prophets, seers and revelators" and look to them for divine guidance on issues as profound as the role of the Holy Spirit and as seemingly trivial as using "thee" and "thy" in prayers.

Mormons don't use the term "infallibility" to refer to their leaders and readily acknowledge that they are imperfect men. In practice, though, Mormon belief comes awfully close to that standard.

"We pay lip service to the prophet's fallibility," said Edward Kimball, son of late church President Spencer W. Kimball. "But when you come down to specifics, we can't think of any incidents where a prophet was wrong."

Read the rest of this story at

FEATURED SPONSOR BYU Idaho Faculty banner Mar. 2015

Comments 9 comments

john_k said...

07:39 PM
on Apr 01, 2011

Report Abuse

Nonsense, nonsense and more nonsense! Obviously we don't stand by Joseph Fielding Smith's statement that man would not get to the moon because we have doctrines concerning when a prophet speaks for the Lord and when he speaks for himself. But when a prophet speaks for God, reverence would dictate that it not be trivialized by calling it a fax from heaven.

lmj said...

10:35 PM
on Apr 01, 2011

Report Abuse

Clearly the writer only picked part of quotes that would support the views that she obviously believed. Not much homework was done here in regards to gathering information. It's like only picking out a few minutes of a person's life and judging that person based on that few bad minutes! Shame on you!

tybenham said...

06:48 AM
on Apr 02, 2011

Report Abuse

It becomes difficult to see with spiritual eyes and hear with spiritual ears when distractions reduce visability and hearing. Finding fault is easy to do under these circumstances. The Lords anointed are imperfect mortals with a mantle of authority to speak for and represent the Savior as special witnesses. When media attention is given positive or negative it will always bring questions to the minds of the readers thereby opening the door for discussion. The Lords ways are not always mans ways and meaningful prayers are not always answered in the way one may expect. To the writer of USA Today, thank you for noticing, I would ask, would you like to know more?

r.s._lds_canada said...

11:57 AM
on Apr 04, 2011

Report Abuse

I echo the sentements of the previous writers and add, when you need advice about an electical problem in your home, do you go inquire from a plumber as to the solution? Maybe you should actually inquire to the proper source before making yourself look incompetent on the subject.... ooppps, too late! USA Today, do your homework before handing in the assignment! VERY dissapointed in the content of this article.>:/

happymoma54 said...

08:52 AM
on Apr 06, 2011

Report Abuse

I wonder why some of you have not learned the Golden Rule. If you actually believe the workings of the church then you know this kind of behavior and bashing is not proper behavior.

onapodium said...

01:53 PM
on Apr 07, 2011

Report Abuse

One of my favorite Brigham Young stories takes place during the time that the US Army was coming to Utah Territory in response to things that had been heard about the Mormons, and church members were scared that the same sort of abuses and terrors that drove them into the wilderness in the first place were about to happen again. At first, Brigham Young told the saints to arm and defend themselves, but than, rather abashedly came back a short time later, and told them that the previous statement had been from Brigham, the man, but now they needed to hear from Brigham, the prophet of the Lord, whose mandate was far different. The saints were then told to refrain from violence and to submit themselves quietly to the influx and authority of the army, and to treat them with respect and curtesy. What could have ended up as yet another tragic chapter in the history of the saints, ended peacefully, and no lives or property were lost during the event. This story illustrates what we believe, which is that when our prophet speaks on behalf of the church that we are recieveing direction from the Lord himself, just as prophets of old did. That does not mean that outside of their responsibility to speak the word of God, that they cannot be fallible. However, when one reaches the point of wisdom and spiritual acumen that enables them to be the mouthpiece of the Lord, they are less likely to make very many errors than most other folk, and I would be far more likely to trust and respect anything that came out of their mouths than I would just about anyone else.

debbie720 said...

02:51 PM
on Apr 11, 2011

Report Abuse

Let's take a good look at any of the Presidents in my lifetime (the past 45+ years)that I have been able to personally observe. LDS or not, anyone would be hard pressed to find fault with their teachings or their personal lives.

jea said...

02:55 PM
on Sep 28, 2011

Report Abuse

I do believe president Thomas S.Monson and the twelve Apostles, of the Church of Jesus Christ Of Latter Day Saints, will talk about things God wants all members and nonmembers need to know concerning His Gospel.

bridget said...

12:37 PM
on Oct 09, 2012

Report Abuse

The problem with most Mormons is that they, themselves, do not know the Lord, so they fail to recognize the fact that Brother Monson does. They don't recognize when Brother Monson is expressing an opinion that the Lord has, and they don't get that, while they don't take their trespasses seriously, the Lord does. It is absolutely untrue that Brother Monson has no ability to speak for himself. But the fact of the matter is, whether you want to admit it or not, Brother Monson is privy to what the Lord thinks, so you'd better take what he says seriously, not just poo-poo it. Never aggrandize things a prophet supposedly said above what the Lord has said, because a prophet won't disagree with the Lord. Most of the so-called disparities members come up with are figments of their own imagination. If they really knew what the Lord thought for themselves, they would see the prophet is a lot wiser than they give him credit for ... especially in the fact that the prophet is willing to listen to the Lord, when most of the rest of the members just plain won't.
Leave a Comment
Login to leave a comment.