Tuesday, February 5, 2013

History of Mormonism: Emma Smith

Born on July 10, 1804, in Harmony Township, Pennsylvania, Emma Hale Smith became a great contributor to Mormonism, mainly due to her participation in being the Relief Society President and the wife of Joseph Smith Jr.
She met Joseph Smith Jr. in 1825, while he and several men were working. Joseph stopped by her house often, but Emma's father, Issac Hale, would not allow her to get married because he considered Smith's occupation disreputable. Ignoring her father's wishes, Emma and Joseph got married Afton New York, on January 17, 1827. Afterwards, Joseph and Emma went to the Hill Cumorah, and Joseph dug up the Golden Plates to be translated. Word spread quickly about Joseph finding a "Gold Bible" in the hill, and it caused Joseph and Emma to move back into Harmony, and meet with Emma's grumbling father. With his help, she and Joseph had a small house to live in. Joseph would translate the plates, and Emma would be the scribe (Emma never saw the plates in person, although she felt them when they were covered. Joseph would look into a hat where the Urim and Thummim was when translating). While in Harmony, Emma gave birth to a son named Alvin, after Joseph's older brother. Alvin lived only a few hours.
In 1829, Joseph and Emma moved in with David Whitmer in Fayette, New York. While there, Joseph was able to finish the translation, and with the help of Martin Harris, he was able to print the Book of Mormon.
Later, while the Church was established, Emma talked to Joseph about the elders using tobacco, which led to the revelation of the Word of Wisdom. Joseph also received a revelation about Emma being an, "Elect Lady," and she would later gather hymns for the church and later become president of the Relief Society.
Emma moved with Joseph many times, and witnessing many of her newborn children dying soon after birth. In her marriage with Joseph, she was able two have two children that would live. After Joseph died, the Church was thrown into disorder. Sidney Rigdon, Emma Smith's son Joseph Smith lll, and Brigham Young, were all wanting to be the next president of the Church. When Brigham Young spoke at a meeting with many members, many of them witnessed how Brigham both looked and sounded like Joseph Smith. They knew that both this revelation and the spirit in their hearts that Brigham Young would become the next president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Sidney Rigdon and Emma Smith would depart, creating churches of their own. Emma's church was the most successfull non LDS church, and would be later known as the Community of Christ.
Three years after Joseph's Death, she married Major Lewis C. Bidamon, a non-member of the Church.
In 1871, Emma Smith Died peacefully in Nauvoo, Illinois.

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