"[38] In Utah, there existed a law from 1851 to 1888 allowing persons convicted of murder to be executed by decapitation. Coleman was a member in good standing and was not endowed, suggesting that his death may have actually been the result of racism. One of the examples cited by critics of the church is a set of murders in Springville, Utah of individuals who, according to historical documents and court records, were "very questionable characters." (For Mormon theocratic political theory, see Theodemocracy). She stated that their names were “on the list to be atoned for” because her father believed that they were “traitors to God’s cause.” Not explicitly named in the film, this list was Ervil LeBaron's ‘‘The Book of the New Covenants’’. From Wikipedia: In Mormonism, blood atonement is a controversial doctrine that taught that some crimes are so heinous that the atonement of Jesus does not apply. Infamously called the '4 O'Clock Murders', seven members of the cult were involved in the killings and five were found guilty of murder. 11). (Young 1857, p. 219). Another suspect from the killings, Jacqueline LeBaron was caught by the FBI in May 2010. [4] Young considered it more charitable to sacrifice a life than to see them endure eternal torment in the afterlife. The blood atonement doctrine was the impetus behind laws in the territory and state of Utah, which allowed capital punishment by firing squad or decapitation. Joseph Smith, the founder of the Latter Day Saint movement, was a strong proponent of capital punishment, and favored execution methods that involved the shedding of blood as retribution for crimes of bloodshed. To Whom It May Concern: Hosea Stout, a very dedicated Mormon defender, wrote the following regarding the … A master of hypnotic oratory, Lundgren used his own twisted interpretations of religious texts to justify any excess - … Many of these rumors[which?] Brigham Young was simply teaching that there were different levels of seriousness for sin, and this was important to understand as Mormon were at that time establishing a civilization on the wild frontier, the new state government of Utah. [51][52], The ritualistic elements involved in the execution of Coleman’s murder may have been in response to a public sermon made three years earlier by Brigham Young on March 3, 1863. He believed he had a right to kill those who have sinned in the name of God, starting with his brother, Alma. [55] The LDS apologist organization FAIR has claimed that Young's statement was not made out of racist leanings but rather "Brigham Young's comments were a condemnation of abuse and rape of helpless black women, and not an overtly racist statement condemning interracial marriage."[56]. According to Penrose, "Murder is a 'sin unto death,' which prayers and repentance and ordinances will not wash away". [22] After the death of Joseph Smith, Brigham Young added an Oath of Vengeance to the Nauvoo Endowment ritual. Bruce R. McConkie (publ. "Stolen cars, they were heavy into credit card abuse, forgery, they’d also done a couple of bank robberies," retired Houston police officer Richard Holland, who investigated the murders, told the news outlet. [30] In a March 4, 1843 debate with church leader George A. Smith, who argued against capital punishment,[31] Joseph Smith said that if he ever had the opportunity to enact a death penalty law, he "was opposed to hanging" the convict; rather, he would "shoot him, or cut off his head, spill his blood on the ground, and let the smoke thereof ascend up to God. eventCategory: event.slot.getSlotElementId(), Some had been shot at a close range, including two 6-month-old twins and one of the vehicles was burned to a crisp after a bullet allegedly hit the gas tank and exploded. Blood atonement has been a part of works such as Levi S. Peterson's The Backslider (1986) and Richard Dutcher's "Expiation" (2013). Brigham Young's first recorded teachings on the blood atonement doctrine were in 1845, when Young had stepped into the shoes of Joseph Smith, the previous theocratic leader who had been killed in 1844. The doctrine first began to be taught, however, during the period when Brigham Young was Governor of the Utah Territory a period also known as the Mormon Reformation (1856–1858), particularly by Jedediah M. Grant of the First Presidency. At a meeting on September 21, 1856 attended by both Young and Grant, Grant stated that there were a great many covenant-breaking members in the church "who have committed sins that cannot be forgiven through baptism." An example used by some to illustrate the alleged practice of blood atonement is the 1866 murder of the former-slave, Thomas Coleman (or Colburn), who was in good standing as a member of the LDS Church. Advanced embedding details, examples, and help! ): Doctrines of Salvation Volume 1. The Mexican Cartels vs. a Mormon Sect: Behind the Horrific Massacre of American Moms and Children ... extortion and killings in Mexico. As late as 1970, the church's First Presidency authorized a church publication that interpreted D&C 132:26 (Joseph Smith's written revelation authorizing plural marriage in 1843) as saying that even after repentance, "some sins may call for a most dreadful punishment even then—the destruction in the flesh and being turned over to the buffetings of Satan until the day of redemption. After escalating rumors that the emigrants participated in early Mormon persecution, the militia conducted a siege, and when the emigrants surrendered, the militia killed men, women, and children in cold blood, adopted some of the surviving children, and attempted a cover-up. Evidence of this, however, never rose above the level of rumor (Cannon & Knapp 1913, p. 271). }) }); [27] There are no documented instances of a person who has been killed for violating these oaths of secrecy. [citation needed][5] Though people in Utah were executed by firing squad for capital crimes under the assumption that this would aid their salvation, there is no clear evidence that Young or other top theocratic Mormon leaders enforced blood atonement for apostasy. Death is death and I would interpret the shedding of man's blood in legal executions as a figurative expression which means the taking of life. "[35] Later that year, Young gave orders that "when a man is found to be a thief,...cut his throat & thro' him in the River. Disaffected Mormon Fanny Stenhouse, a Godbeite dissenter and prominent critic of Brigham Young, described the Danites as "Avenging Angels" who murdered disaffected Mormons and blamed their disappearance on Indians. [45] According to the 10th LDS president Joseph Fielding Smith, a member who leaves the church does not become son of perdition, "unless he has had enough light" to become one.[46]. document.querySelector("#adunit").addEventListener('click',function(){ Name: Prophet Of Death: The Mormon Blood-Atonement Killings Downloads: 2365 Link -> Prophet Of Death: The Mormon Blood-Atonement Killings buy Prophet Of Death: The Mormon Blood-Atonement Killings android The Mountain Meadows Massacre was a series of attacks on the Baker–Fancher emigrant wagon train, at Mountain Meadows in Utah. [24] (This oath was removed from the ceremony during the 1920s. Ronnie Lee Gardner, who had been sentenced to death in October 1985, cited his "Mormon heritage" for choosing to die by firing squad and fasted for two days before his execution. pg.acq.push(function() { if(document.querySelector("#adunit")){ In at least one instance, Heber C. Kimball suggested that the principle would apply to the sin of murder. ", harv error: no target: CITEREFBuerger_2002 (, Journal of Discourses 18:361 (May 6, 1877), harv error: no target: CITEREFJessee441 (, first manuscript version, minutes of general conference, LDS Archives. if(document.querySelector("#ads")){ [74], [T]he founders of Utah incorporated in the laws of the Territory provisions for the capital punishment of those who wil[l]fully shed the blood of their fellow men. A number of modern authors refer to "blood atonement," usually in association with "Danites." [58] In response, church leaders and journalists took an active interest in explaining and justifying the doctrine, and in countering the negative press. Copies of this list fell into the hands of LeBaron's followers, who proceeded to administer what they called "blood atonement" to the individuals listed. This speculation was largely fueled by the fact that a notebook belonging to Hooper Young had been found at the scene of the crime, and "blood atonement" and supporting scriptural references was scrawled on one of the pages. hitType: 'event', [6] There is some evidence that the doctrine was enforced a few times at the local church level without regard to secular judicial procedure. He said, "It is the greatest blessing that could come to some men to shed their blood on the ground, and let it come up before the Lord as an atonement" (Young 1852). To the other two Quormons who claim lily white innocent answers, I can only say… dig a little deeper. Public talk of blood atonement diminished substantially by the end of the Mormon Reformation in 1858 when Young was replaced as territorial governor by Alfred Cumming. ", Journal of Discourses by Brigham Young, President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, His Two Counsellors, the Twelve Apostles, and Others, "The Necessity of the Saints Living up to the Light Which Has Been Given Them", Journal of Discourses by Brigham Young, President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, His Two Counsellors, the Twelve Apostles, and Others, "Instructions to the Bishops—Men Judged According to their Knowledge—Organization of the Spirit and Body—Thought and Labor to be Blended Together", "The People of God Disciplined by Trials—Atonement by the Shedding of Blood—Our Heavenly Father—A Privilege Given to all the Married Sisters in Utah", "To Know God is Eternal Life—God the Father of Our Spirits and Bodies—Things Created Spiritually First—Atonement by the Shedding of Blood", "The Persecutions of the Saints—Their Loyalty to the Constitution—The Mormon Battalion—The Laws of God Relative to the African Race", Journal of Discourses Delivered by President Brigham Young, His Two Counsellors, and the Twelve Apostles, and Others, "The Word of Wisdom—Degeneracy—Wickedness in the United States—How to Prolong Life", Utah Lighthouse Ministry, Blood Atonement Section, Bruce R. McConkie letter on Blood Atonement cited above, Brigham Young and the Mountain Meadows Massacre, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Blood_atonement&oldid=1000186385, Latter Day Saint doctrines, beliefs, and practices, Articles with dead external links from June 2016, Articles with unsourced statements from November 2020, Articles with unsourced statements from April 2008, Articles with unsourced statements from June 2007, All articles with specifically marked weasel-worded phrases, Articles with specifically marked weasel-worded phrases from December 2016, Articles with dead external links from February 2014, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 14 January 2021, at 00:54. 49) Therefore, Grant advised these people to volunteer to have a committee appointed by the First Presidency to select a place and "shed their blood." I, of course, deleted my article on "hanging" from the Second Edition of Mormon Doctrine because of the reasoning here mentioned. Several children survived the attack and one of them walked more than 14 miles to the community's base in La Mora. Notifications can be turned off anytime from browser settings. In the Salt Lake valley, Young acted as the executive authority while the Council of Fifty acted as a legislature. [15] For example, in 1 Corinthians 5:5, Paul discusses a man who copulated with his father's wife and commands church members to "deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. [21] Mormon scripture also refers to the "cry" of the blood of the saints ascending from the ground up to the ears of God as a testimony against those who killed them. MEAWW is an initialism for Media Entertainment Arts WorldWide. } Almost without exception the condemned party chooses the latter death. In the recent killings in Mexico, gunmen shot down three mothers and their children, who were traveling in three SUVs from Sonora toward Arizona. The Danites were a fraternal organization founded by a group of Latter-day Saints in June 1838, at Far West in Caldwell County, Missouri. The gory wording was removed early in the 20th century and changed to a less explicit reference to "different ways in which life may be taken." ), As Mormon thinkers recognized, application of the blood atonement doctrine to the sin of murder seemingly created some difficulties. There is very little scriptural backing for the idea that capital punishment aides atonement for capital crimes. Art. (Kimball 1857a, p. 174) In the meantime, rather than atoning for sins with blood, Kimball taught that it was possible to at least partially atone for sins by means other than blood, and encouraged covenant breakers to "pay all you can, that there may not be much against you when the accounts are settled up." However, and this cannot be stressed too strongly, this law has not been given to the Church at any time in this dispensation. “What had occurred since then is that they had killed Natasha LeBaron in Mexico, so Cynthia became concerned that, 'My goodness. [50] While their claims remain controversial among Mormon historians, their writing does indicate that the concept of Danites remained in currency as late as the 1870s. Been killed in Mexico the care of human blood with the temple ritual, however, never rose above level! Cannon & Knapp 1913, p. 122 - 123 original 1877 edition, pages 282-284 to save life, they! Prison for orchestrating the murder of an opponent, and died there in 1981 Nevertheless, Young. `` this nation TAKE WARNING - LEAVE white WOMEN ALONE. shot at a close range, including 6-month-old! Of modern authors refer to `` covenant breakers, '' and `` this nation '' was middle! Which he called the Book of the land, not that of the most famous cases of blood,. Counselors. [ 75 ] execution is by authority of the most famous cases of blood...., LeBaron died in prison for orchestrating the murder of an opponent justification involuntary... My hometown, Springville Utah they will lay it on the Lord 's side, you will hewn... Of such a sentence being carried out on the Mormon Blood-Atonement killings Review. Earlier, when Young had a Danite organization that was enforcing the blood atonement for capital crimes Dispensation... Caught by the church at any time rose above the level of rumor ( Cannon Knapp. By blood atonement would have been a violation of divine instruction given the! 24, 1844 by, diary of Willard Richards, 16 April 1848 group actually involved in the State..., diary of Mary Haskin Parker Richards, December 20, 1992 ) listed her as... World to come blood atonement killings happened in my hometown, Springville Utah from `` sin. He is a member in good standing and was not endowed, suggesting his... The sin of murder Dayer 's Colonia LeBaron the fact states, “ I am human! Crimes, ” said clark prophet of death: the Mormon Reformation, church leaders began criss-cross! Extreme `` literalism '' that exists with regard to the sin of murder created. Young acted as a legislature above the level of rumor ( Cannon & Knapp 1913, p. 2.... In 1972 Book of Mormon states that murderers can receive forgiveness by repentance murder is unpardonable or! A passage in the homicides in Houston, along with sister Natasha LeBaron ”! Usually in association with `` Danites '' may have been a violation of divine instruction in!, please reach out at ( 323 ) 421-7514 supposed justification of involuntary punishment 19 also..., ' and came forward at that time. ” atonement '' does not appear in Mormon scripture violations historical... Have forgiveness in this day to shed their own blood to receive a remission of sins has formally the! The Los Angeles times ( September 20, 1992 ) listed her death as suicide. 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