Skip to comments.The excommunication of Elder George P. Lee
Posted on 09/02/2009 6:11:50 AM PDT by Colofornian
Twenty years ago today in Mormon history . . . . . Elder George P. Lee, the first American Indian General Authority of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was excommunicated.
In 1975, after Lee served as a mission president in Arizona, he became a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy, one of the presiding bodies of the LDS church. Lee was 32. His autobiography proved to be popular. "Silent Courage: An Indian Story: The Autobiography of George P. Lee, a Navajo" went through nine printings.
Lee felt a kinship president of the church Spencer W. Kimball, who had had lived with a Navajo family while growing up and had many American Indian friends. President Kimball championed the American Indian during his presidency and created various programs to assist the American Indian.
After serving as a general authority for fourteen years, ten of those years under Spencer W. Kimball, Elder Lee was excommunicated on September 1st, 1989 for "apostasy and other conduct unbecoming a member of the church." Lee was the 1st general authority to be excommunicated since 1943, when Apostle Richard R. Lyman was excommunicated for living in an adulterous relationship.
While the public was unaware at the time of the excommunication, Lee had been molesting a twelve-year old neighbor under the pretension of polygamy.
After his excommunication Lee publicly released letters illustrating differences he had with church leaders. They expressed concern with the church's termination or phasing out of Indian programs during Mormon Church President Ezra Taft Benson's administration, including the church's Indian Committee, missionary programs, education programs, & financial assistance.
Lee also believed Lamanites would play a prominent role in establishing the "New Jerusalem" in the last days, with white church leaders playing a secondary role.
Most Mormons believe American Indians are Lamanites who descended from Book of Mormon peoples (Israelites that colonized ancient America). American Indians were therefore considered direct descents from the tribes of Israel, whereas those of European decent were typically thought to be "adopted" into the house of Israel when baptized into the LDS church.
Lee felt the Book of Mormon taught the Lamanites would play the dominant role in the last days with assistance from those adopted into the house of Israel. His promotion of this belief was apparently one of the issue surrounding his excommunication.
The LDS church has a policy of not commenting on excommunications, and has not released information regarding Lee's claims.
Four years later reports circulated that Lee had molested a 12-year-old girl under the guise of polygamy in 1989. Lee's letters stated he had been accused of polygamy by church leaders, a practice forbidden by the Latter-Day Saint church since 1890. Lee later pleaded guilty of the molestation charge.
In 2007 he was jailed for failing to register as a sex offender but on March 29th 2009, he was removed from Utah's sex offender registry and remains a free man today.
'Tis so surprising that the genealogical "experts" can't even get Native American blood right re: its descendency.
From the article: Four years later reports circulated that Lee had molested a 12-year-old girl under the guise of polygamy in 1989. Lee's letters stated he had been accused of polygamy by church leaders, a practice forbidden by the Latter-Day Saint church since 1890. Lee later pleaded guilty of the molestation charge.
Apparently all Lee did was to do what Mormonism's top leaders did in the 19th century: Seduce a young girl via promise of "marriage." The only difference was Joseph Smith and Brigham Young & other Lds leaders involved 15 yo girls. Lee went younger.
People need to understand that under Lds ex-communication guidelines, its own founder and a good chunk of their past "prophets" would become ex-communicated.
You left out it all depends on what the next divine phone call, divine email, divine text message will instruct. Maybe everybody up and move to Patagonia.
I suppose if you were a protestant and had a wrist watch during the Salem Witch trials you would be burned at the stake.
It is not wise to judge people of the past by today’s standards.
Excuse me, but between today and a certain man named "Moses" the standard of adultery has been the same. And even between now & the beginning of peoplehood -- what Jesus referenced as "at the beginning" -- the standard was one wife:
"Haven't you read," he replied, "that at the beginning the Creator 'made them male and female,' and said, 'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh'? So they are no longer two, but one. (Matthew 19:4-6)
And if you're not talking about either adultery or polygamy, you're not going to become the pedophile's apologist, are you, by trying to tell us that sexual relationships with young teens (on top of already existing marital relationships) was A-OK as long as you hit some "ripe" spot on a calendar?
Lee was excommunicated for failing in his assignments. In his public letter he showed a lack of humility and support for church leaders.
Yeah well, that's pretty standard worldly wisdom, funny you can pitch it to sound holier-than-thou.
FYI, people of faith DO NOT view their past as recorded in scripture as a poor standard by which they may be judged.
DNA researchers around the world are shocked.
Moses had TWO wives. See Numbers 12:1
So what? (Many men these days have more than one wife)
The problem is that you're reading into the text that Moses had more than one wife simultaneously. You can't tell us when Moses' first wife died and when he married his second wife, can you?
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