A Note from Matt Grow
Managing Director, Church History Department
I recently finished reviewing a densely packed binder with 488 pages of small type, the draft of the last volume of The Joseph Smith Papers. It was a bittersweet experience. Covering Joseph’s final six weeks, the volume illuminates that tumultuous era that led to the tragedy at Carthage.
The experience was bittersweet not only because I was reading about Joseph’s final days but also because I have spent much of the past decade working with the Prophet’s papers. I have worked with tremendous colleagues who have, with exacting professional standards and personal faithfulness, published more than two dozen volumes. The book that I just reviewed, Documents, Volume 15, will be published in spring 2023.
The Joseph Smith Papers, though intended for scholars, has influenced more than just the academic world. Its findings are reflected in changes in almost 80 section headings in the Doctrine and Covenants (2013). It is the foundation for volume 1 of the Church’s new published history, Saints. The project’s website is well integrated into the 2021 Come, Follow Me curriculum.
The Joseph Smith Papers has blessed the Church and helped “millions [to] know Brother Joseph again.” This all has been possible through the generosity of the Larry H. and Gail Miller Family Foundation. The Millers’ philanthropy has enabled the Church to move forward with this monumental project.
I wish each of you the best as you consider how you can bless the Church and the world with your own philanthropy.