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In support of the 2021 “Come Follow Me” curriculum, the Interpreter Foundation is hosing a virtual fireside series that seeks to enrich individual and family scripture study through a series of livestream presentations by faithful scholars on selected capstones of Joseph Smith’s final years. An initial presentation on the events of Joseph Smith’s martyrdom on June 27 the anniversary of Joseph Smith’s martyrdom) will commemorate that event. Later, from October 18 through November 15, weekly firesides will describe events and doctrines relating to Joseph Smith’s glorious, final teachings—including the restoration of the fulness of temple ordinances and blessings, his courage in the face of continued attempts on his life, the preparation of the Quorum of the Twelve for his departure, boldly countering the aspirants for leadership of the Church, the successful gathering of the main body of the Saints under the direction of Brigham Young, and sealing his prophetic life and testimony with his blood. Time will be set aside for viewer questions following each presentation.
Presentations are scheduled for Sunday evenings at 6:00 PM Mountain Time. Online links for viewing the events will be available a few weeks prior to each presentation.
First Fireside – True to the End: The Culmination of the Earthly Ministry of the Prophet Joseph Smith in His Martyrdom at Carthage
R. Jean Addams
June 27, 2021 (Anniversary of Joseph Smith’s martyrdom)
6:00 p.m. MDT
This fireside will begin by describing the premonitions of Joseph Smith about his impending death in the years preceding his tragic martyrdom. We will review the series of circumstances that led to his and his brother Hyrum’s demise at the hands of the mob that stormed the jail in Carthage. The little-known story of Joseph and Hyrum being rowed across the Mississippi River in the very early hours of the Sunday prior to their fateful trip to Carthage to consider options and secure legal counsel while out of the reach of his enemies will be told. The story demonstrates the devotion of the Prophet to his people and to the incredibly challenging destiny God had appointed for him. It further demonstrates the love of the Smith family and the Saints for their son, husband, brother, and friend. In all these events, the hand of God was clearly present during the tragedy and eventual triumph of the Prophet’s mission as a witness of Jesus Christ and His Restored Church.
R. Jean Addams is a lifetime Mormon History enthusiast, independent historian, and author. He and his wife Liz reside in Woodinville, Washington. He recently completed his twentieth year as a volunteer Institute of Religion instructor. He holds a BS in Accounting and an MBA from the University of Utah and is happily retired. Addams has presented and published several articles dealing with the “Redemption of Zion” and the “Church of Christ (Temple Lot).” His most recent articles include: “Zion’s Printing & Publishing Company: From the Redemption of Zion to Corporation,” (Journal of Mormon History, April 2020) ; “The Return of the LDS Church (1900-1907) to Jackson County and the Redemption of Zion,” (John Whitmer Historical Association Journal, Fall/Winter 2018); “The History and Acquisition of the Original Temple Lot Property in Independence, Jackson County, Missouri,” (Mormon Historical Studies, Spring 2019); and “A Contest for Sacred Space,” The Ancient Order of Things: Essays on the Mormon Temple (Signature Books, 2019). He is the author of Upon the Temple Lot: The Church of Christ’s Quest to Build the House of the Lord, (John Whitmer Books, 2010). Addams is a past president of the John Whitmer Historical Association, and a member of the Mormon History Association, the Sons of the Utah Pioneers, and the Missouri Mormon Frontier Foundation. His interests, besides family, include fishing and skiing.