Truth and Reconciliation: Late Night Thoughts on the 40 th Anniversary of the Lifting of the Priesthood and Temple Ban

Just as the Civil Rights Act of 1968 did not end racism in the United States, so the lifting of the priesthood and temple ban for blacks of African descent in 1978 did not end racism in the LDS Church. Even with the Official Declaration in 2012 and the publication of “Race and Priesthood” in 2013, racism in the Mormon church and culture continues as a significant problem. While changes in policy have produced positive shifts, this paper argues that nothing short of a formal truth and reconciliation commission undertaken by the Church will resolve the complex social, religious, and spiritual issues surrounding the priesthood and temple ban.

Bob Rees