The Foundations of Faith features priceless pieces of Mormon history. Now anyone can see Joseph Smith’s works including a page of the original Book of Mormon.
The Mormon religion, established in 1830 by Joseph Smith, has kept its founding a secret from the general population. As the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has come under increasing criticism for being secretive about its founding, it has finally decided to make several documents detailing the Mormon history available to the general community.
Mormon History: A Priceless Collection
Last week a priceless collection of 26 books and other documents was revealed by leaders of the church. Among the documents are journal entries from Joseph Smith himself, a book of commandments, and even a page from the original Book of Mormon. This single page is considered the most valuable piece in the collection because of its great importance to the church. It is said that Smith dictated the entire book in a single draft over a period of 2 to 3 months, a feat so extraordinary it is credited as from the gift and power of God.
Foundations of Faith
The Foundations of Faith exhibit represents the first time since the faith’s founding that the general population has been given access to so many sacred documents. Valued at well over several million dollars, the security of the documents has always been a concern. Over the last several decades, with membership swelling to over 15 million, there have been increasing requests for more transparency. This exhibit is the Church’s attempt to provide the public with that transparency, even discussing some of the more controversial topics in its short, but rich history. Controversial topics include a past ban on black men comprising the lay clergy, as well as a well-known history of polygamy. Not only have the vaults been unlocked for all to see, but several scholarly articles have been released that explain and clarify these controversial topics. It hopes not only to satisfy the public’s interest in Mormon history but also to generate interest in their faith.