Speaking in Tongues, Mar. 15, Tues. [1920]

-- Mar. 15, Tues. [1920]
[James E. Talmage Journal] ... Upon my arrival at Springville this morning I was met by one of the Bishops, who requested that I meet the four Bishops of Springville together with certain relatives of the parties who have recently been dealt with in the Tintic Stake, and to this I assented. I was taken to the home of Bishop Bringhurst of the Springville 2nd Ward, where I found assembled the other Bishops and several women who were related to the unfortunate brethren and sisters with whom we have had to deal. They assured me that they sustained the action of the High Council, and of the direction given by the Church, and that in view of the facts they could not well see how the Church could do otherwise than disfellowship or excommunicate the offenders. But they wished to know whether those who had incited the West Tintic movement, and who had in some degree induced people to go out upon the land and live in the strange order thereon established, were to go free. They informed me of conditions that have long existed in Springville, this consisting essentially in the holding of meetings by women, and participated in by a few men, at which meetings messages were asked for. They told of alleged inspiration and revelation coming through women, and particularly of the frequency with which the gift of tongues was indulged in; and averred that by these means directions were sought as to individual and other affairs. Thus, they say, that business enterprises, land purchases, change of residence, mating in marriage, etc., were determined by this clique, as through prayer and fasting some Â"messageÂ" had been given directing them what to do.

I counseled with the Bishops on the matter, and urged them to greater diligence in the regulation of the affairs of their respective wards, particularly with regard to people holding meetings of a professedly religious character, and the encouragement of publications supplicationsfor Â"manifestationsÂ" out of the ordinary.

In all these alleged proceedings, many of which were conducted with semi-secrecy, the dominant thought seems to have been that individual inspiration, direction through speaking in tongues, and particularly dreams, were superior to all counsel or direction through the ordinary Church channels.

It seems to me that the evil one is particularly busy in thus trying to undermine the faith of the people, that is of the few who are willing to be thus led, and in planting the germs of spiritual disease, generally in a soil of excessive piety.... (1)

-- March 28, 1923
In an Idaho Relief Society meeting, a Sister Nelsen, the mother of the Relief Society president, spoke in tongues after which her daughter interpreted, saying that the "Presidency of the Relief Society were chosen and set apart before they came into mortal life." The First Presidency instructed the stake president to inform Sister Nelsen that "the gift of tongues was given to the Church for . . . the purpose of preaching among peoples whose language is not understood. . . . This being the case, the sisters of Relief Society will readily perceive that it was entirely unnecessary for Sister Nelsen to resort to speaking in tongues on the occasion referred to, as all present spoke the same language. . . . It would be well to advise Sister Nelsen to let speaking in tongues alone and to confine her speech to her own language, and then she will be responsible for what she says." [First Presidency, Letter to Heber Q. Hall of Boise Stake, 28 March 1923, First Presidency Letterpress Copybook, LDS Church Archives.] (2)

-- Sep 9, 1935
... I send you, herewith, a copy of a letter from Heber Crook of Argentina, South America, together with a carbon copy of my reply ... He says that he has relatives and friends who speak in tongues and prophesy, and wants to know if we agree with the Elders who say that these people receive their information from the Evil One. It is our belief that only members of the true Church are entitled to speak in tongues by the inspiration of the Lord. I am sending you, herewith, extracts from one of my sermons in which I relate two experiences in my own life dealing with the gift of tongues.... (3)

-- Oct 23, 1946
BYU campus newspaper reports that professor of religion Richard Thomson, announced in a class that "during a vision last night, it was made known to me that 'you bet' is the anglicization of "hubet," the pure Adamic word for "you're welcome." Either the word has survived relatively intact for many millennia, or else it was revealed to the true Saints in the nineteenth century as part of the restoration of all things. Personally, I support the latter view." This announcement leads to the creation of the "Hubet Society of BYU" (HSBYU), which in turn leads to an attempt to create an Adamic 101 course. The entire movement is crushed when Jesse Wright, Provo Central Stake president, speaks at a BYU fireside and calls Professor Thomson, who lived in the stake, "insane," "an apostate and a heretic." Professor Thomson soon disappears from BYU. (4)

1 - James E. Talmage Journal, Transcription reproduced by Trevor Antley, Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University
2 - Dan Vogel and Scott C. Dunn, '"The Tongue of Angels": Glossolalia among Mormonism's Founders,' Journal of Mormon History Vol. 19, No. 2, 1993
3 - Heber J. Grant, Letter to W. Ernest Young; Heber J. Grant, Letter to Zelda A. Merritt
4 - On This Day in Mormon History, http://onthisdayinmormonhistory.blogspot.com

LDS History Chronology: Speaking in Tongues

Mormon History Timeline: the gift of Tongues