(The topic of LDS/Mormon history and doctrine). . . .
My family on both sides are generational Mormons. On at least one side, my father's, my great grandparents were part of the famous "handcart" Mormon pioneers who trekked (by foot, pushing their belongings in handcarts) from the Midwest plains to Utah; a tough, determined folk.
On the other side, I have Mormon pioneers and settlers who established towns in northern Utah, one of whom was an official church historian (more on him at a future date, I plan . . . as I am in touch with a family archivist who has collected a quite interesting history on that fellow, who ended by blowing himself up with a lot of church documents in an explosion of discontent . . . and perhaps insanity, I've learned in recent years).....
Anyway, I went to "Sunday school" at the LDS church as a child, received the missionary lessons at age 15 and got baptized at that time. Always a voracious reader, and especially concerning spiritual and/or religious topics, I began reading and studying all I could of LDS church history and doctrine. I was first a "deacon", then ordained a "priest" in "the church" and was months away from going on an LDS mission at the age of 19 going on 20. I also taught Sunday School for young adults in a "ward" in Davis, California, where I lived at the time.
Indeed, it was my serious and dedicated self-study of Joseph Smith's teachings . . . that began my leaving "the church". Just months before becoming an ordained "elder" and going on mission, I was stunned to read that LDS doctrine, in essence, considered The Fall . . . a GOOD thing and necessary for the "eternal plan of spiritual progression" whereat . . . because of Lucifer and Eve's disobedience to God, humans got physical bodies and were able to thus procreate ( a necessary feature of becoming a "god") . . . . . .
I realized that this insidious teaching meant that, to the Mormon mind, the end "justified the means" and such thinking and belief would allow any member to justify anything--any sin or evil, so long as the purpose was deemed "good" . . . since, according to Smith and logical deduction from his various teachings, God Himself was a liar and trickster who got what He wanted using deception. . . .
Since that time, years ago, I have continued to study LDS history and doctrine and maintain a large library on the subject(s) . . . including a full multi-volume set of "the Church's" own authorized history, along with books by about various "prophets" and "apostles", also church approved, plus many books more critical of the religion from insiders and scholars who have left or been excommunicated.
I know what I'm talking about on the subject.......
Every year in Manti Utah . . . "the Church" puts on the Manti Miracle Pageant, which is a (propaganda) play of sorts with music, actors and lighting and effects . . . portraying the story of Joe Smith and the coming about of the LDS Church . . . and it has become a hotspot over the years for street preaching Christians to go to and witness to the throngs of thousands of LDS who attend. Christians now come from all over the world to this thing every year. We ourselves haven't gotten down there yet to join some of our Christian friends who go, but hope to some day . . . . . .Some of the fellows that go down there whose clips you can find on Youtube from previous years are Matt Slick, Bill McKeever, Aaron Shafovaloff, Rob Sivulka, Keith Walker, Bobby Gilpin....... Here are a few clips from the recent event which are starting to show up on YouTube: