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Our Heritage: A Brief History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
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Our Heritage: A Brief History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

4.31  ·  Rating details ·  3,218 Ratings  ·  85 Reviews
The central message of this book is the message declared by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints since its beginning. Joseph Smith, the first prophet of this dispensation, taught:

“The fundamental principles of our religion are the testimony of the Apostles and Prophets, concerning Jesus Christ, that He died, was buried, and rose again the third day, and ascended
152 pages
Published 1996 by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (first published 1980)
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Jul 27, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: religion
I was quite amazed at how gripping this book was to me. Its a very simple history of how the LDS church began, and follows the travels and movements of the early latter day saints. Unlike many religious books, this one does not focus on spiritual upliftment, but really is just a simple historical book of facts. With this said however, I was pleasantly surprised to find that the book filled me with a surprising sense of love for those around me and a broader understanding of the pure Christan gos ...more
Elijah Christopher
Jul 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I have long appreciated what the early Saints sacrificed for me, but studying the early Saints again through Our Heritage: A Brief History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has caused me to come to an even deeper realization of how little I do for the Church compared to how much the Church does for me. The Church is able to serve us, and we are able to serve God because of these Saints, who with faith without measure, served the Church in ways that deep down I would have to ques ...more
Jan 05, 2009 rated it liked it
Easy read, I tried to wait and read it with the class, but wanted to get it over with. It was a very informative read, but I I think that it still is vary basic. A lot of the info I'm skeptical about after my Utah history class that tore those Mormon myths to pieces. Especially the frozen river, the crickets, and the plentifulness of the SLC valley. I think it's good for people with a limited knowledge of the history of the church. I liked the random facts and stories about the presidents and th ...more
Jul 29, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: lds-doctrinal
This book provides an excellent account of the establishment, growth and progress of the LDS Church since its inception in the last dispensation up through the administration of President Gordon B. Hinckley.
Stephen Greco
Oct 19, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
This book was a quick and easy read about the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I would recommend that every member of the LDS faith read this book and anyone who is just curious about the LDS faith and our beliefs read this book. Very easy to understand. Quick read. Well worth the time.
Jonathan Inman
Mar 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
Insightful stories. Often, the vantage tries to stay unbiased, but not always. When some controversial topics came up, details were avoided though question naturally would rise.
But mostly, overall, it was very informative and inspiring.
Dec 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I think this is the first year I have read this book through, and I'm so glad I did. For such a small book, it really is a very good history of the Church, with a good mixture of overview and detaill
Aug 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This was just fun to read and get a brief history of the church in chronological order.
Nov 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This has been a great companion book for this year's study of the Doctrine and Covenants in Gospel Doctrine Sunday School class.
Wanyou Israel
May 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Great book about the church history
Nov 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Not nearly in depth enough and covers zero controversial issues. Would recommend reading this right before reading Saints and then Rough Stone Rolling.
James Van Leeuwen
Jul 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
A decent overview of the present history of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Jul 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
I read this through book years ago, but was inspired to read it again after teaching a Sunday School class the preparation for which had me read parts of chapters three about the Missouri years. The book is short, informative, and includes a selection of interesting stories from the times portrayed.

I am interested in getting more detail, but this book fills its intent as a short summary history of the church very well.
Lisa Rector
Feb 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: EVERYONE!
As the subtitle says, Our Heritage is a A brief history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. The little book can't expound upon everything that happened while the church was established, but the accounts and stories are enough to show that building up the church of Zion was a great undertaking and that the church was established by men of God and founded upon principles of righteousness. I enjoyed reading about the sacrifices of early saints. This is our heritage, and it is a grea ...more
Harry Burnside
Feb 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
A very inspirational book showing how the Church grew from an initial membership to what is now over 15,000,000. The highs and lows of that history and the dedication of members of the Church to make the work go forward and onward to greater achievements in the future.
David S. T.
Nov 12, 2011 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: People who love whitewashed history
Shelves: religion
I read this curious about the history of the Mormon church. This book has a primary purpose and that's to make the Mormon church look as good as possible, it never really felt trustworthy for any facts, I'd have to look up other accounts on everything presented. Plus they skipped most controversial subjects such as the Mountain Meadows massacre (in Utah apparently all the Mormons did was help each other and outside groups such as the Indians). They did mention Polygamy which Joseph Smith was div ...more
Feb 13, 2017 rated it liked it
I read this book to fulfil a goal "read a book about church history" it is also part of the sunday school ciriculum this year. I neither enjoyed or hated it. it is just one of those books you read because you need too. it is informative, and fairly easy to read. it is what it says it is. a brief history of the church of jesus christ of latter day saints. it is part of the approved missionary library for our church. it can be found for free through the gospel library app or online at
Dec 30, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: religious
A wonderful concise overview of the history of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, beginning with Joseph Smith's experience in 1820 that led to the Restoration of the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Of course there is much more to every story and many more stories to tell, but this book really helped me gain a deeper appreciation for those faithful prophets and saints who came before. Their examples of faith in the midst of adversity and persecution strenghten my faith and t ...more
Nov 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
First of all the book is a bit outdated so the most recent president President Monson and his legacy aren't included although his name has appeared.

The book was an interesting read and in the parts where they were moving from one chosen location to another read like other settler accounts. The history sounded right while I would love to look into it more.

It also includes a history of the oldest Presidents starting after Joseph Smith. The information included their terms, the main goal while in
Rebekah M.
Mar 28, 2011 rated it liked it
I read this book for a stake challenge in preparation for Pioneer Day. From Joseph Smith through all the Presidents of the Church ending with Gordon B. Hinckley, I loved the little tid bits and odd facts from each of their lives. The early saints sure endured a lot and the growth of the Church is very drastic. It was neat how this book is set up like a time line so I could see the Church's progress and growth with membership numbers, # of temples, # of missionaries serving, etc. It is very brief ...more
Oct 06, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book. As I was waiting outside this morning for the bus in 40 degree weather and freezing my toes because I had sandals on, I thought about the pioneers and all they suffered and endured. My 10 minutes was nothing compared to them walking barefoot on freezing ground. It really increased my appreciation for what they did so we could have the gospel today. Like Elder Holland said on Sunday, you know the gospel is true because no one would do something like that otherwise. We ...more
Feb 14, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction, religious
I really liked this book. It is a good overview of our church history. it does not cover any given time period or contraversial aspect. I can not imagine giving up everything, like to pioneers did. There stead fast testimonies, wrok ethica is inspiring. I found it was interesting about the different leadership styles, personalites and what each president had accomplished. It still amazes me how big we have grown and all that has been accomplished.
Aug 08, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2010
This is a really quick and basic history of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. The book moves along quickly and has a brief summary of what each of the Presidents of the Church focused on during their time of service. If one is really interested in this topic there are many other books that have much more details and information, but that kind of detail is not the purpose of the book.
Feb 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
"Our Heritage" is a short and simplified history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. It is easy to read and contains some inspiring accounts of those who participated in the church's development. I highly recommend this book to anyone who is interested in learning more about the Mormons.
K Baker
Sep 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I will never forget Ila Mae Barnes' excitement every four years as we would re-read this little book that changed the world and the eternities. What an honor to visit teach her for years until I was asked to go with my husband as he home taught her until her passing. Be nice to see her in heaven someday...
Jun 14, 2010 rated it liked it
This is pretty basic book about the history of the church, like the title says. If you want more detail, you will have to read other things. This is a great overview for people who do not know much about the LDS church, but also for members who want a basic knowledge of our history. I would recommend reading the book for that reason.
Apr 05, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
interesting read. I didn't realise this group of people had battled so much to establish their religion in the early years. I wonder why it hasn't made them more tolerant as a religious group. Not much to be said on polygamy either.
The LDS fascinates me and always has long before I met a good friend who is a Mormon.
Sep 26, 2010 rated it liked it
totally worth a quick read. this was meant to replace 'a truth restored' in the mormon basic beliefs canon. if you are wondering who that 'joe smith' guy is than you can start here, with this ca 150 pg book. the only reason it's not getting a higher rating is because it's not particularly riveting... it's just a good down and dirty history of lds people.
Sep 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A very informative and inspirational read.

Reading about the pioneers of the Church of Jesus Christ, is profound in that it gives you a vision of how very dedicated , faithful , righteous , courageous.. they had been!

It strengthens my own testimony and inspires and motivates me to be as strong even amid persecutions, as they have been.
Feb 14, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Enjoyed learning about each Prophet's legacy! Every Prophet had his own section that was just long enough to understand who they were and what they brought to the church. It was a chronological discussion of our church's early events and full to the brim of member's short stories. It reminded me of the purposes of this church - to teach and bless its members one at a time.
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