If you are investigating Mormonism (the "Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints" or "LDS Church"), you are probably studying it in private meetings in your home with missionaries from that church. Here are some of the key things that they are probably telling you:


Here is a summary of important facts about the Mormon church and its history that the missionaries will probably not tell you. We are not suggesting that they are intentionally deceiving you -- most of the young Mormons serving missions for the church are not well educated in the history of the church or in modern critical studies of the church. They probably do not know the all the facts themselves. They have been trained, however, to give investigators "milk before meat," that is, to postpone revealing anything at all that might make an investigator hesitant, even if it is true. But you should be aware of these facts before you commit yourself.

Each of the following facts has been substantiated by thorough historical scholarship. And this list is by no means exhaustive!

Although we cannot possible include the evidence in this summary without making it overly long, we will be happy to provide you with the details of the evidence on any point, at your request.


If you should decide to become a member of the LDS church, you should be aware of what your life in the church will be like. Although you will find yourself warmly accepted by a lively community of healthy, active and generally supportive people, many of whom are very happy in Mormonism and could not imagine their lives without it, there is another side:

Consider very carefully before you commit yourself, and remember that any doubts you may have now will likely only increase.

Examine carefully both sides of the Mormon story. Listen to the stories of those who have been through an unhappy Mormon experience, not just those Mormons who may speak glowingly of life in the church.

The Mormon missionaries are often charming and enthusiastic. They have an attractive story to tell. At first it sounds wonderful. But remember the old saying, "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!" Be careful not to fall into the trap of believing something simply because you want it to be true. Mormons may tell you that those who criticize the church are lying, misquoting and distorting. If you examine the sources used by the critics, however, you will discover that most of their source material is from official or semi-official Mormon writings. You, too, should examine those sources.

Is Mormonism a "cult"? Many experts on religious cults see in Mormonism the same fundamental characteristics as cults which have entrapped the unsuspecting, even though most people think of "cults" only as small, unknown groups. Use a "cult checklist" to evaluate Mormonism, or any group, before you commit yourself.

To get more information about the other side of Mormonism, or to see the evidence supporting any of our statements about the church, feel free to contact us. Our only aim is to make sure that you hear both sides. We promise not to preach at you, but only to provide you with facts to balance the Mormon story.

Please indicate the topics on which you would like more information and evidence for what the missionaries won't tell you:
The First Vision Stories, the 1820 "Revival"
Joseph Smith's "Moneydigging," the 1826 Trial
The Book of Mormon Witnesses
The Method of Translating the Book of Mormon
The Civilization of the Book of Mormon Compared to Actual Ancient American Civilization
Mosaic Law in the Book of Mormon
Changes in the Book of Mormon Since 1830
Book of Mormon Doctrine Compared to Present-Day LDS Teachings
B. H. Roberts and The View of the Hebrews
The Endowment Ceremony; Freemasonry
Joseph Smith's Unfulfilled Prophecies
The "Martyrdom" and the "Kingdom"
The Church's Rewriting of History

Disasters Under the Prophets:
  The Kirtland Bank    The United Order    Zion in Missouri
  The Mark Hofmann Forgeries and the Mormon Murders

Everlasting Doctrines Now Abandoned:
  Adam-God   United Order    Plural Marriage (polygamy)   
  The Curse of Cain    Blood Atonement

Joseph Smith's Other Translations:   The Book of Abraham   The Kinderhook Plates

Your Life as a Mormon:
Worthiness Interviews    Tithing    Obedience to Authority    Closing Your Mind
Your Marriage    Homosexuality    Position of Women
Cult Checklist    Other:_________________________

Your name:_______________________________________
City:_________________________ State:____________ Zip:________
PLEASE NOTE: No one will call on you unless you request it.

Please call me: My phone:____________________
I would like you present at my next meeting with the missionaries on (date, time)_____________
Please send your request for information to:

This version of the INVESTIGATOR'S INFORMATION TRACT is intended to be downloaded and printed for handing or mailing out. To do that, press the "Save As" button on your browser. Then, when you are off-line, use any text editor to view and edit the source file which you have saved. It contains instructions on how to edit it for use as a hand-out.
If you are viewing this on line, you may wish to see the the version formatted for on-line viewing, with links to documentation on the Internet, at INVESTIGATOR'S TRACT.
This article is Copyrighted 1997 by Richard Packham and This article may be freely distributed in print and on other web sites only when used in its entirety and as long as this Copyright notice is included.

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