Well, this is trickier given a conservative yet ignorant bishop (the worst opponent you could have). In THAT situation (which isn't the one I'm in), you can insert real info, but cite benign sources (e.g. the Ensign, apostle quotes, church sources). Just be certain of your sources, and always cite them. If you cite sources that are questionable to a conservative TBM, you may end up in hot water.@hawkgrrrl
When I speak of historical issues, I personally endeavor to be more accurate and more complete, similar to what you outlined in your last note, although I disclose even more.
Would you mind sharing some insight into how you do this? From my standpoint (our bishop is very VERY conservative especially for Bay Area, CA and has no clue about church history) this a very daunting thing for me. I don't know how to raise my hand in class and answer a question with historical "fact" (as closely as we know) without being viewed as heretical.
In my ward, our previous GD teacher brought up many of these points in the course of the lesson. He is very scholarly and knowledgeable. Our current one, not so much. But as an example, the new guy threw out the question: "What was the process to translate the BOM?" A loaded question, if ever there was one. SSSA (Standard Sunday School Answer) might be "through the U&T," but you could add the peepstone hat thing quite easily because it was in the Ensign (cite your source). You could answer that one method was that JS put his face in a hat to block out the light and the words appeared below as if written on a strip of parchment.
I agree it's hard to swallow this, and in a way I'm disappointed by it. OTOH, why are they in these roles? Probably because they live very good lives of service for a very long time, they are kindly, they are good examples, they have some leadership experience, some experience in the world, and to some extent, they've played the internal political game well enough to get where they are (or been pedigreed - that seems to help too) - in short, they "fit in." There's nothing on that list that says they read intellectual books or have depth of knowledge of history. Some doubtless do know quite a bit - I would bet that there are some that are interested. But the idea that any of them are spending time poring over dusty tomes in a vault is unlikely. GBH may have been more knowledgeable than TSM. Each person has his own interests to pursue.hawkgrrrl wrote:
I want to reiterate my argument that many of the church leaders aren't aware of some of the intricacies in the history.
I must admit this is a bit hard for me to swallow in spite of the Marlin Jensen quote. Who looks in those vaults after all? And don't they ever read the books written by the myriad of Mormon historians? Are they too busy writing their own faith-promoting obedience books? What about President Hinckley. He spent his lifetime in the church and wrote "Truth Restored." Surely he had to run across some of this stuff?