ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

At Symposium of Mormon Academia, Author Reveals Anew on Prophet of Mormonism’s Third-Largest Denomination

Updated on September 4, 2018
Rhett Wilkinson profile image

Rhett has won 12 awards from the Society of Professional Journalists or Religion Newswriters Association. He's on Twitter @rhettrites.

Source

“The church … tucked him away,” Daniel Stone told attendees of the 2018 Salt Lake Sunstone Symposium, a conference of critiques of Mormonism.

Growing up in that religion, The Church of Jesus Christ (Bickertonite), Stone was interested in William Bickerton, the religion’s founding prophet.

Stone is a PhD candidate studying American religious history at Manchester Metropolitan University in the United Kingdom. He realized that Bickerton’s story as told by the Monongahela, Penn.-based church comprised “heritage history versus the actual history."

So Stone researched and wrote a book, “William Bickerton: Forgotten Latter Day Prophet.” He submitted the first five chapters to the apostles of the church, for which he is a deacon, before silence from the leadership ensued. He was later permitted to publish it independent of the church.

“I hope this is as close to the history as we have,” Stone said.

Sidney Rigdon was a high-ranking church elder in the church started by Joseph Smith, who began the overall Latter-day Saint movement. After Smith died, various men strived to claim they were the successor to Smith and/or start another church. Rigdon went to Pittsburgh and created “a church of Christ” that resembled Joseph Smith’s church at the time it was in Kirtland, Ohio.

When Rigdon was “big news” in the Steel City, Bickerton joined his religion, Stone explained.

But the church went bankrupt and Rigdon left Pittsburgh for New York. He said that if anyone asks where he went, “I have gone to hell on a 1,000 years’ mission,” Stone reported Saturday morning in Sandy, Utah.

Bickerton was converted to Mormonism through The Book of Mormon and wanted to stick with that Latter-day Saint movement. He met with missionaries from Brigham Young’s church that moved to Utah. They talked about similarities and differences, Stone said.

“He joins the LDS church,” Stone noted. “William Bickerton is a devout Mormon.”

But then Young practiced polygamy in his church, as Smith had done. Bickerton couldn’t stomach it, Stone said.

But still, he maintained belief in the book distinctive to Mormonism. He also noted that Joseph Smith prophesied of the Civil War and believed that the "choice seer" in The Book of Mormon was not Smith, but a Native American, given Mormonism's doctrine of "Lamanites."

And Bickerton had a dream of being on “the highest mountain on Earth,” where he was told, “you are in a good place.” Bickerton was also told that if he departed from that place, he would “tumble” into a “chasm,” Stone reported.

Bickerton proceeded to create The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints. (It's the same name as Young’s church except for a hyphen between “Latter” and “day”).

He was very much an “evangelist preacher,” Stone said.

“He believes in a spiritual feast,” Stone added at the Mountain America Credit Union Exposition Center. “He believes in speaking in tongues, prophecy, restoration.”

Bickerton departed from the church after believers got upset with him about “conduct” that amounted to him being friends with a woman who was married.

“He’s no longer the prophet of the movement,” Stone reported.

Stone’s book begins with a quote from Job that was read at Bickerton’s funeral, Stone said.

Community of Christ Seventy John Hamer was a co-presenter with Stone. The book was published by Signature Books.

© 2018 Rhett Wilkinson

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)