History of the Church Series
This daily feature is an introduction to a full article by Lisle G. Brown. Each Wednesday we focus on an aspect of church history, beginning in New York in the early 19th century and progressing throughout the year to Utah in the 20th century. To read the full text of this article, follow the link below.
In the spring of 1831 "about two hundred men, women and children", all Latter–day Saints, left western New York and moved to northeastern Ohio. These New York Mormons moved in response to Joseph Smith's revelations, in which the Lord promised them that if they moved to Ohio He would endow them with power from on high. This irresistible promise of an endowment motivated the Saints to build the temple at Kirtland, Ohio. There Joseph Smith introduced the Church's first sacerdotal ordinances of washings and anointings. A Pentecostal outpouring of the Lord's spirit accompanied these rites, which the Prophet called "an endowment indeed." In addition, temples were planned for the central gathering places of the Saints at Independence and Far West, Missouri. And so it was at Nauvoo. In January 1841 Joseph Smith received a revelation containing the Lord's approval of the Saints' labors. The revelation stated that the ordinances administered in the Nauvoo Temple would surpass those of the Kirtland Temple.