-- May 5, 1898
The First Presidency and Twelve discussed the Word of Wisdom. One member reads from the twelfth volume of the Journal of Discourses a statement by Brigham Young that seems to support the notion that the Word of Wisdom was a commandment of God. Lorenzo Snow, then President of the Council of the Twelve agrees, saying that he believes the Word of Wisdom was a commandment and that it should be carried out to the letter. In doing so, he says, members should be taught to refrain from eating meat except in dire necessity, because Joseph Smith had taught that animals have spirits. Wilford Woodruff, then President of the Church, says he looks upon the Word of Wisdom as a commandment and that all members should observe it, but for the present, no definite action should be taken except that the members should be taught to refrain from meat. The minutes of the meeting record that "President Woodruff said he regarded the Word of Wisdom in its entirety as given of the Lord for the Latter-day Saints to observe, but he did not think that Bishops should withhold recommends from persons who did not adhere strictly to it." (1)
-- Thursday, May 12, 1898
[Apostle John Henry Smith Diary] Salt Lake City
I surrendered 2047 shares of Groesbeck Co. old stock and am to take the new.
I had a short visit with Prest. Lorenzo Snow and we talked over in a frank way the financial condition of the church and what we would do as to having an understanding with the presidency in regard to those affairs. (2)
1 - On This Day in Mormon History, http://onthisdayinmormonhistory.blogspot.com
2 - Jean Bickmore White (editor), Church, State, and Politics: The Diaries of John Henry Smith, Signature Books in association with Smith Research Associates, Salt Lake City, 1990, http://bit.ly/johnhenrysmith
LDS History Chronology: Lorenzo Snow
Mormon History Timeline: the life of Lorenzo Snow
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