April 4, 2005
To Elder Packer,
Your comments at General Conference (and prior comments you have made) concern me greatly. You call yourself an apostle of Jesus Christ yet your words and actions show you more to be a pharisee in your beliefs. You and the Mormon Church leadership are leading the membership down the primrose path to hell.
The validity or falsity of Mormonism hinges upon its early history. Prior and present leaders of the Mormon Church have stated that the Church stands or falls on Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon. How else would we learn what those involved in the church's origins and history actually said and did, without consulting "dusty old books”? Is not the Bible a dusty old book? What about the Book of Mormon if it truly is the word of God? You quote scripture stating that people will suffer great penalties if they speak out against Joseph Smith. This scripture states that the penalties will be given for people who do this when Joseph has not sinned. But what if he did sin? Which he did; perjury, lying, pedophilic behavior, etc. How can you as a supposed apostle of Jesus condone these types of actions?
As to Joseph Smith and the warning that penalties will be severe for talking out about him, it is intellectually dishonest to make outrageous claims about someone (i.e. Joseph Smith) and then expect everyone to just accept your word and not investigate. If you hold up someone as next to Jesus in perfection, that individual should be subject to the most intense scrutiny possible. And should pass the scrutiny. If you have to hide their past and whitewash what happened then you are taking part in intellectual dishonesty and you are corrupting the people who are in your charge and trust.
I would expect an apostle of Christ to embrace the truth and to look for it. Not to hide the truth from people as you do, Elder Packer. You should repent of this and embrace the truth and stand for truth no matter if you think it is worthy or not.
As with my prior letters to President Hinckley asking difficult questions, I expect this letter to go unanswered as well. However, you cannot hide from truth and your lack of a response tells volumes.
William E. Wilson