Periodicals; Mormons; Religious thought; Philosophy and religion
Independent national quarterly established to express Mormon culture and examine the relevance of religion to secular life. It is edited by Mormons who wish to bring their faith into dialogue with human experience as a whole and to foster artistic and scholarly achievement based on their cultural heritage. The journal encourages a variety of viewpoints; although every effort is made to insure accurate scholarship and responsible judgment, the views expressed are those of the individual authors and are not necessarily those of the Mormon Church or of the editors.
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Bradley, Martha Sonntag ; Roberts, Allen Dale
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Pretender to the Throne? R.C. Evans and the Problem of Presidential Succession in the Reorganization
Pretender to the Throne? R- C- Evans and the Problem of Presidential Succession in the Reorganization Roger D. Launius Born into a poor Canadian family living in St. Andrews, Ontario Province, on 20 October 1861, Richard C. Evans rose to fame and power experienced by few other members of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.1 In this process he spent over forty years in the leadership of the Reorganization, working for two church presidents, Joseph Smith III (1832-1914) and Frederick M. Smith (1872-1946), as a seventy, apostle, member of the First Presidency, and bishop of Canada. Yet he left the Reorganization in 1918 over a complex set of issues that reflected the problems of both his own consuming ambition and the unusual administrative and procedural policies in the Reorganized Church's method of choosing its leaders.2 Evans struck out on his own, denounced the Reorganized Church and its leader, and founded his own church organization. His dissent represented an important episode in the development of both the Reorganized Church and the Mormon dissenting tradition. 1. Basic information on the life of R. C. Evans can be found in Roger D. Launius, "R. C. Evans: Boy Orator of the Reorganization," John Whitmer Historical Association Journal 3 (1983): 40-50; Roy A. Cheville, They Made a Difference (Independence, MO: Herald Publishing House, 1970), 258-67; F. Henry Edwards, The History of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Independence, MO: Herald Publishing House, 1973), 5:605-607; W. Grant McMur-ray, '"His Reward is Sure': The Search for R. C. Evans," Restoration Trail Forum 11 (May 1985): 5-6. 2. The current succession of W. Grant McMurray to the Reorganized Church's presidency, the first non-Smith to hold the office, points up the importance of this earlier controversy.