Source:When the Prophet Speaks, Is the Thinking Done?

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"When the Prophet Speaks, Is the Thinking Done?"

"When the Prophet Speaks, Is the Thinking Done?":

It is often stated by critics of the Church that the LDS people are blind followers of the prophet, and that the Church expects and cultivates such blind obedience. A quote which they choose to offer in support of this misconception is that ‘when the prophet speaks, the thinking is done.’ This statement originally appeared in the Improvement Era, in June 1945, as the Ward Teaching message for the month....The appearance of this message caused much concern among many inside and outside of the Church. Dr. J. Raymond Cope, the leader of the First Unitarian Society in Salt Lake City, was one of those concerned. He decided to express his concerns about the impact of this message in a letter to President George Albert Smith in November of the same year. The letter was cordial, and expressed the feeling that such a message was “doing inestimable harm to many who have no other reason to question the integrity of the Church leaders… this cannot be the position of the true leaders.”

President Smith responded to Dr. Cope with a letter of his own, designed to clarify the point, at the first of December. The letter, reproduced in full below, should lay to rest any misconception about whether the Church or its leaders expect blind obedience in any degree.[1] —(Click here to continue)


  1. "When the Prophet Speaks, Is the Thinking Done?," FairMormon.