Great Newsweek Interview with President Hinckley

Newsweek‘s latest issue for the week of Oct. 17 has a tremendous interview with President Hinckley: “Solid, Strong, True.” (Thanks to Dale of Appleton, Wisconsin for the tip tonight.) And take a look at the cover! The issue has a lot of coverage about Latter-day Saints.

Here is a sample from the interview:

What do you believe is Smith’s most meaningful contribution, not only to the church but also to the world?

His greatest contribution I think is defining the nature of deity. He saw the Father and the Son. He spoke with them. They were beings of substance. They were in form like a man. And they could express themselves and he could speak with them. Such an interpersonal relationship. And such a warm and reassuring thing to know the nature of God.

Amen! And thank you, Newsweek, for the timely coverage.

One more passage:

The church has strict codes of living that members are held accountable for. Why do you still attract so many followers?

We live in a world of shifting values. The family is falling apart. Parents failing in what they ought to do. And they find in this church something that expects something of people, that has standards and holds to those standards and speaks of requirements and definitions and so on. And they find here a rock that is solid and strong and true and isn’t wavering with every gust of wind.

And another amen.


Author: Jeff Lindsay

19 thoughts on “Great Newsweek Interview with President Hinckley

  1. I loved President hinckley on Larry King live a while back. His responses to questions about the church’s sordid history were classic. Right out of the LDS apologist’s playbook.

  2. I guess Newsweek is getting a bit fairer on religious reports. The article about the Church runs for three pages, at least in the website. The focus is quite balanced and presents the Church in a positive light. I enjoyed the comment made by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, about Mormonism not being Christian.

    The published interview was a bit short, in my opinion, yet I enjoyed President Hinckley’s remarks on the contribution of Joseph Smith. But that is a topic for a completely different post.

  3. “Isn’t a 4th century Christian a Christian?”

    I think what Elder Holland meant is that the beliefs and practices of the LDS faith are more similar to the early 1st century Church whereas what is professed by the groups of today as “Christian” is more a result of 4th century thinking, especially the Council of Nicaea in 325, which established the view of the Trinity shared by most Christian denominations today.

    This is not the view (of the Trinity) that the LDS faith shares, so thus we are not Christian. We are held to a standard which did not exist when Jesus walked the earth and did not exist for several hundred years after His death. The members of the Church at Antioch (and presumably elsewhere) were called Christians in the decades following Jesus’ death, without the Council of Nicaea and their “enlightened” understanding of the Trinity.

    And AG, It was Mr. Geisler who said we are not Christian because we “deny almost every one of the major fundamental doctrines of Christendom” (read the Trinity. Oh, and maybe Original Sin.)

    Elder Holland said “I am devastated when people say I am not a Christian, particularly when generally that means I am not a fourth-century Christian.” In other words, our Church is held to standards that did not exist until the 4th century but because we don’t follow those standards, we aren’t Christian.

    I leave it to you to figure out who is correct. As for me, if the choice is between following what the practices and beliefs were when Christ walked the Earth or what state-sponsored Councils came up with as “Christian,” I choose the former with no regrets.

  4. Hey Samuel:

    You are right, my honest mistake. It should have read: “I enjoyed the comment made by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, surprised by those who say that Mormonism is not Christian.” My apologies. Norman Geisler is only repeating very old claims. Jeff has collected several the issues in this page. It is worth taking a look. When critics of the Church deny it a place in the Chirstendom, the divergence of the Trinity, which leads them to assume that LDS are polytheistic is also wielded. The relation between faith and works has been also utilised. The previous two links are highly recommendable.


    Yes a 4th, 5th, 18th and 21th century Christian is a Christian. The only problem is how you define what is a Christian. As Samuel indicated, when Latter Day Saints are branded non – Christians, the standards that they use would have ruled out even the first Christians. We are condemned by having extra biblical scriptures and revelation, when the standards they use, such as the Trinity, were developed AFTER the Bible was completed. That is the context of Elder Holland’s comment.

  5. I loved the line from “anonymous,” above, about “the church’s sordid history.” Funny. Right out of the anti-Mormon’s playbook.

  6. I think the 4th century christians should spend more of there time being christians, instead of spending there time spreding anti-mormon crap.

  7. I admire Gordon Hinckley. I was sorry that the interviewer did not ask him a couple of questions regarding the current political scene in the USA. Like what is his take on the war in Iraq?, or does he feel that the US government is focused on the correct problems facing our country? I think his insight would have been very valuable


  8. There have been a couple of President Hinckley’s statement during General Conference over the past couple years that indicate he did not look favorably on our involvement in Iraq. I forget which conference it was in.

  9. It sort of looked like they were written questions and written responses to me. I wouldn’t be bothered or surprised if that was the case — it is the best way to be sure you say what you mean to say in the responses.

  10. Sorry all, this is completely off topic and hopefully not too unwelcome, but I don’t know where else to turn. My wife and I are wondering about the church’s policy on use of the “morning after” pill. Is it considered abortion? I don’t want to provoke a discussion on this topic, just to clarify church policy. Thanks for your help.


  11. As far as I know that has not been addressed that I have heard of… I would pray about it and you will know if it feels right or wrong. It seems like a fuzzy issue, but then again I am not an expert on it, so maybe you should read about what it actually does. I would think(my opiniion only) that if it kills a fertalized egg that it might not bee good. Again, don’t go by what I say, Pray about it. If there is policy on it I guess that would be good too, but I don’t think there is.

  12. I wanted to respond to a previous post that President Hinkley seems to be opposed to our involvement in Iraq. I had the exact opposite impression based on his past comments. In the conference at the time we went to war with Iraq, he said, “In a democracy we can renounce war and proclaim peace. There is opportunity for dissent. Many have been speaking out and doing so emphatically. That is their privilege. That is their right, so long as they do so legally. However, we all must also be mindful of another overriding responsibility, which I may add, governs my personal feelings and dictates my personal loyalties in the present situation…there are times and circumstances when nations are justified, in fact have an obligation, to fight for family, for liberty, and against tyranny, threat, and oppression…I believe that God will not hold men and women in uniform responsible as agents of their government in carrying forward that which they are legally obligated to do. It may even be that He will hold us responsible if we try to impede or hedge up the way of those who are involved in a contest with forces of evil and repression.

  13. Maybe this is turning into a political discussion of the Irak’s war. I’ll chip in. President Hinckley’s views are actually condemnatory. He wishes it would be over quickly and that peace can be restored (see President Hinckley at Larry King ).

    I do not support the Irak ocuppation. It was done under false arguments. The rationale presented for it was not logical. The ‘forces of evil and repression’ can be found in most countries. Saddam was actually helped by the US. When a lot of atrocities happend, the US kept silent, because he was cooperative. Just remember Manuel Noriega and Panama. George Bush Sr., when in the CIA office, made that drug dealing references of Noriega were ‘stricken’ from his records of intelligence. When Noriega did not cooperate, it was all brought back. Same story, different character. I guess that the saying of Roosevelt (I’ll remove the profanity)” A … yes, but our … ” is still true. It is interesting to note that the US and Britain provided a lot of Irak’s weaponry. The arguments were the weakest. The motivation was more to do with the Irak’s oil reserve (consider what did the American forces protected first, oil fields or the vast historical wealth of the National Museum.)

    I agree that we must fight for family and freedom, but in the book of Mormon set ( Alma 43:45 ) the fight starts when an identified enemy comes. The Nephites didn’t invade other lands just for the sake of retaliation. I know this is a sensitive issue to some, especially those that have relatives that are fighting in Irak or, worse, have been killed during this battle. I do not wish to offend anyone. But I do make my point that the Irak war was unjustified, unnecessary and its cost will have to be payed by the generations to follow. For sure, the world is not a safer place.

  14. I hope that the political discussion will not go on for very long. If it does, I’ll feel obliged to get involved, and I don’t want to do that. I don’t think it would be healthy for this blog if it were to turn very much toward politics.

  15. Most likely, you don’t know me. So you’re almost certainly not qualified to pronounce any judgment on my personality or character, one way or the other.

    It is true, though, that, on another thread which had already gone political, I responded politically. I will do that, if I think seriously misguided and historically mistaken political comments are being made and if they rise to a level where I think I should respond. It’s not a question of self-control, or of my losing self-control. I said that I would do it, and I did. I would prefer that the conditions did not exist here where I felt the need to do it, because I do not believe that this blog was intended to focus on politics.

    If you wish to criticize me personally while remaining anonymous, there is a message board on which that is a major and regular occurrence. You will find considerable and enthusiastic support there for your project.

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