Misc.: Church

I have in the back of my pantry a file cabinet with a lot of old files. Some are notes from my college classes; some are files on Church subjects. There are files on things like New Testament, Book of Abraham, JST, Old Testament, Modern Scripture, and so forth. There is also a thick miscellaneous file of Church stuff with the captioned label. These are not active files; I haven’t added to them for probably 20 years or so. So the archivist in me was curious: What did I think was of sufficient import or interest that I decided to save it in a file? The following inventory of that file contains the answer:

1. a. 7 pages of handwritten notes on the Nauvoo Expositor
b. A facsimile edition of the Expositor [which the Nauvoo Christian Visitors’ Center people helpfully passed out at the City of Joseph pageant one year; I was very grateful for my own copy!]
c. A copy of Dallin Oaks, “The Suppression of the Nauvoo Expositor” from Utah Law Review 9:862 et seq. [I believe these were background materials for a presentation I gave on the Expositor at the Chicago chapter of the J. Reuben Clark Society.]

2. Photocopy of Daniel C. Peterson and Stephen D. Ricks, “Comparing LDS Beliefs with First-Century Christianity,” The Ensign (March 1988).

3. 4-page handout for an EQ lesson I gave once on “Original Sin.”

4. A thank you card I received from my SP (also an old friend) after speaking in conference one year: “I felt richly rewarded in hearing your remarks at our Saturday evening session of Stake Conference. Your talk was both spiritual and precise. You reminded us of fundamental issues that are critical to our salvation. It is my privilege to have known you for so many years. You are a master teacher. You lifted my soul.”

5. A letter with instructions I received for a ward Xmas program, at which my wife and I had agreed to portray Mary and Joseph.

6. A 3-page handout with words to old Xmas carols, such as Thys Endere Nyghth (one of my favorites).

7. A 2-page outline of a talk on Melchizedek Priesthood.

8. A single page of notes captioned Lesson 26 Ideas – “Teaching Your Sons to Honor Womanhood.”

9. A copy of the outline for the Xmas sacrament program I put together one year. The only talk was closing remarks by the bishop; the entire program was readings and music (primary, choir, congregation). I didn’t originally plan it this way, but I decided to memorize all the readings. There was a totall of something like 120 verses and it took me 2-1/2 months (mostly while driving in the car), but the result was fantastic; maintaining eye contact with the audience makes all the difference in the world.

10. An old, completely obsolete Chicago temple schedule.

11. A single page of Teach by the Spirit Ideas.

12. A yellowed article from the Chicago Tribune, “Mormon Elder Admits Tall Tales.” (I assume you can guess who that one was about.)

13. An old Nauvoo pamphlet with a map of the sites, and a stack of Old Nauvoo pamphlets for specific sites.

14. A photocopy of a PFS article in the SL Tribune about Avraham Gileadi’s The Last Days book being pulled.

15. A lesson outline for “Agency.”

16. A lesson outline entitled “Word of Wisdom.”

17. A lesson outline entitled “Holy Ghost as Comforter.”

18. A letter with a list of questions from the Mutual girls; apparently in preparation for a lesson I was to give on the Millennium.

19. A Church News article from November 5, 1988 on Blood Atonement.

20. A lesson outline for “The Oath and Covenant of the Priesthood.”

21. A Dear Abby column on Mormons and Christianity.

22. 4 pages of notes on The Hofmann Forgeries.

23. A SL Tribune from August 1, 1987 with complete Hofmann coverage.

24. Copy of the Salamander Letter from the Church News.

25. Four Church PA releases relating to aspects of the Hofmann affair.

26. The program for “An Evening at the Polysophical Society,” an EQ social at the University of Illinois student ward, November 5, 1982 (Michael Hicks was our EQP; he wrote about this event in his “A Quorum Memoir” published in Sunstone).

27. A letter asking me to do a presentation for a Valiant A class.

28. A couple of Xian pamphlets on how to be saved.

29. A longhand copy of a couple of quotations from JS and BY on Bible translation.

30. Notes for an Easter talk.

31. Notes for a lesson on Succession in the Presidency.

32. Notes for a talk or lesson in the FV.

33. Ideas for a lesson, apparently on developments in the first part of the 20th century Church.

34. Notes for a lesson on the BY-led Exodus.

35. A handwritten translation of material from the beginning of 1QS.

36. Notes on Facsimile 2.

37. My old PGP insert for what is now D&C 137 and 138.

38. 23 Questions Answered by the BoM.

39. A couple of handwritten examples of colophons.

40. Hebrew and Greek alphabets (hand copied from Strong’s).

41. Apparently a handwritten outline of the three special lessons directed to the Jews that the Church published in the 1970s.

42. 3 index cards, apparently for a talk on being a “peculiar” people.

43. Note I received from a member of my GD class [later to become our Stake Patriarch]: “In all the years of attending Sunday School classes, I have never experienced a better teacher than you. Your presntations are excellent! Your preparation is exceptional! Your spirit and testimony are marvellous!”

44. Ideas for Lesson #1: “The Family: Scriptural and Doctrinal Foundations.”

45. Ideas for Lesson #3: “The Family and the State.”

46. Four handwritten items of legal bibliography re: 19th century Utah law.

47. Religious Studies Center pamphlet.

48. Photocopy of Newsweek article showing protestors at the Dallas temple in full temple clothing.

49. Newspaper article about Saints Alive.

50. Photocopy of a DHO “I Have a Question” from the Ensign about distinguishing HG from our own wishes.

51. Class handout (not mine) on Preparation and Prayer.

52. Pamphlet “Are Mormons Christian?” by Bill Forrest.

53. Copy of BRM’s Seven Deadly Heresies talk (for which I happened to be present).

54. Chronology from Nightfall at Nauvoo.

55. Letter from Jack Welch dated September 7, 1981 responding to my expressed interest in FARMS. Also some early FARMS newsletters and catalogs.

56. Handouts (not mine) for a church lesson on evolution.

57. Several old Eisenbrauns catalogs.

58. An old Simi Valley Stake Seventies Project catalog.

59. Notes for a lesson on “Preparation for Temple Worship.”

60. Notes for a lesson apparently on excommunication.

61. Paper with “Some Family Ideas.”

62. BYU flier with a picture of S. Kent Brown (my old boss) touting his project to microfilm Coptic records.

63. A galley for a Michael Hicks Sunstone column, “Nietzxche’s Stomach.”

64. A ward Easter program at which I spoke and my handwritten text of the talk.

65. Handout for a Michael Hicks lesson on the Resurrection.

66. Handout for a single adult fireside “I Have a Question” with a list of questions addressed by the panelists.

67. A memo from Bill Russell, then MHA President, on publication of papers.

68. A photocopy of Nibley’s Victoriosa Loquacitas.

69. 21-page typewritten ms. of an early paper I wrote entitled “The Essential Nature of the Marriage Ordinance in the Mystery of Godliness.”

70. Handout (not mine) on what the Lord has to say about learning.

71. Copy of Nibley’s “How Firm a Foundation! What Makes It So.”

72. Page of notes on the Vulgate.

73. Anti tract on Adam-God.

74. Photocopy of that Newsweek article on Quinn v. Packer.

75. Handwritten copy of letter I wrote to Jack Welch, occasioning his response itemized above.

76. Guidelines for Priesthood Home Teaching.

77. Another letter to Jack Welch suggesting a proposed project.

78. A Dialogue pamphlet.

79. Handout (not mine) of Some Measures of the Effectiveness of “Divine Economics.”

80. Copy of Nibley’s “What is a Temple?”


  1. Tell me more re: #28.

  2. Kevin Barney says:

    #28 I think were a couple of pamphlets I picked up on my mission. They’re pretty generic pamphlets on how to be saved. One is titled “Have You Heard of the Four Spiritual Laws?” The four laws are:

    1. God loves you, and offers a wonderful plan for your life.

    2. Man is sinful and separated from God. Therefore, he cannot know and experience God’s love and plan for his life.

    3. Jesus Christ is God’s only provision for man’s sin. Through him you can know and experience God’s love and plan for your life.

    4. We must individually receive Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord; then we can know and experience God’s love and plan for our lives.

    The other one is titled “how to find life” and is a retelling of the Nicodemus story. This one comes from the American Bible Society.

    If anyone else is curious about a particular item, let me know and I’ll try to describe it in more detail. I’ll leave the folder out for the next day or so.

  3. This makes me wish I hadn’t tossed some things.

  4. Kevin, you rule. Even your junk drawer is cool.

  5. Left Field says:

    It would be a stretch to call mine a “file,” but I do have a box of church stuff. A few highlights:

    A random church program from 1976

    Detroit Chapel Dedication program, 1993

    Old issues of the Restoration Research newsletter.

    Photocopies of some Dialogue and Sunstone articles: The Second annointing in LDS Theology and practice; Interview with Lowell Bennion; But Dick Tracy landed on the moon; Poelman revises conference speech; Seers, savants, and evolution; A religion of clerks; and many others

    Chicago Temple open house program. (Don’t ask me where I got this; I wasn’t there.)

    Several unused tithing envelopes, some going back to the early ’70s.

    The line of authority for my patriarch

    Lubbock Temple architect’s drawing

    Anti-Mormon tracts I was given at BYU

    BYU Universe Extra for June 9, 1978: “BLACKS GET PRIESTHOOD God reveals new policy to LDS Prophet”.

    Mimeographed seminary handout on the Law of Common Consent

    Random church program from the Ft. Meade-Laurel Ward, Chesapeake Stake, 1973

    Handout on historical polygamy statistics I got at a BYU seminar.

    Scout troop roster from 1973

    To young men only

    Flipchart pages, ca. 1980

    Kirtland Temple brochure

    A badly typed mimeograph scam attempt that was placed under my windshield wiper at church in the early ’80s. “The L D S Warehouse (L.D.S.W.)” “AREN’T YOU LUCKY TO BE A MORMON?” “For us here at L.D.S.W., we feel aglow with spreading our love for our dear brothers and sis…” blah blah blah. You can order a bronze bust of JS for only $849; “Favorite recipies of the wives of the LDS prophets” Gold embossed pages $35; 2.5 x 5 ft oil painting of the general authorities for $250; Wall mural of the general authorities “(Perfect for your ward!)” 20×7 feet, $700. Baby layette kit, $250. Etc. Oddly enough, they only accept cashier’s checks.

    RLDS brochures

    Program from the Detroit Center RLDS Congregation for July 7, 1996.

    St. George and Arizona Temple Brochures from the 1970s.

    Missionary discussions and new member lessons from when I was a stake missionary about 12 years ago.

    My Aaronic Priesthood personal record book from the early ’70s.

    My Top Pilot Flightbook, ca. 1966

    And that’s just a fraction of what’s in the box.

    Yes, I am a packrat.

  6. Kevin Barney says:

    Left Field, I love it! Thanks for the listing. (I have an AP workbook from the early 70s, too.)

  7. Whose pantry ISN’T bursting with handwritten examples of colophons? I practically have no room for food, what with all of the damned handwritten colophons.

  8. What a wonderful way to reflect on life! I’m going to do that when I get back to Utah!

    The greatest save from the past that I know I have is my old film strips and projector. MSFH was the greatest church movie ever made. The film strip is even better almost as if it were made for that medium. I’m proud to still own mine. And I can still repeat great swaths of the dialogue on command.

  9. Latter-day Guy says:

    “To young men only”

    An Elder I lived with left that pamphlet on his companion’s bed, having altered the title to read “To Elder S—- Only.” It was hilarious; I think it was the same Elder who could do a spot-on Packer impression, and would always start in talking about “little factories.” He was awesome.

  10. SteveP, can you still do or hear the “beeps” on the filmstrip from your mission, when you watch the movie now? I can :-) And The First Vision!