DeWayne Hafen: Interview to Dale Von Atta, 1978

As a teenager, DeWayne Hafen helped Ross LeBaron in his machine shop while LeBaron taught him about the Church of the Firstborn. When Hafen met him again as an adult, LeBaron was hesitant to ordain Hafen. The reason was Hafen’s previous affiliation with The Church of the Firstborn of the Fullness of the Times. Even though Ross LeBaron considered his brothers’ organization a “counterfeit” of the true Church of the Firstborn, he wouldn’t “steal” someone who “belonged” to them.

DeWayne Navy

DeWayne Hafen in the 1960’s. 

In this interview given to journalist Dale Van Atta in June 1978, Hafen speaks of his disillusion with the two main leaders of the larger LeBaronite church, Joel and Ervil LeBaron. “There were deals for wives, women, money, land… A lot of people told me I was a damn fool. Everyone else was dealing for something. I wasn’t dealing for anything”. Continue reading

Edsil Allred: Patriarchal Blessing of Ross LeBaron, 1934

Ross LeBaron interview

Ross Wesley LeBaron in June, 1977. | Image: Dale Van Atta. Courtesy of L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Brigham Young University.

Central, Arizona   February 9, 1934

Blessing, given by Patriarch Edsil Myron Allred on the head of Ross Wesley LeBaron, son of Alma Dayer LeBaron and Maud LeBaron, born November 16, 1914, in Overton, Nevada.

Dear Wesley: In the name of the Redeemer of Israel, I place my hands upon your head and give unto you a Patriarchal Blessing, which will be of great worth to you in future life, if you study the same and live up to every privilege that comes before you.

You were chosen in the spirit world to come to earth and take a tabernacle and be a representative in your father’s family in counsel and advice, and to cherish the mother that gave you birth.

You are a true Israelite, a descendant of Abraham – the great Patriarch, and a direct lineage of Ephraim, that the Lord spake, and the ancients apostles said would come to earth in the last days; and you were blessed by coming through such noble lineage. The Lord blessed you with a strong and active body. He would be much displeased if you defiled this body in any way. Therefore, I would say unto you, cultivate good habits and refrain from the evils of the world, that your body may be clean and pure, that the Spirit of the Lord may dwell with you. Continue reading

Articles of Faith of the Church of the Firstborn

ARTICLES OF FAITH

of

THE CHURCH OF THE FIRST-BORN

1. We believe in Michael, the Eternal Father, and His Son, Jesus Christ, and in Joseph Smith, the Witness or Testator.

2. We believe that men will be punished for their own sins, and not for Adam`s transgression; for He partook of mortality, that He might bring forth mortal bodies for His spiritual offspring.

3. We believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel of the First-born.

4. We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are; first, Faith in Michael the Archangel, and His Son Jesus Christ, and in Joseph the Testator; second, Repentance; third, Baptism, by immersion for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost. Continue reading

Steve McKinley: Ross LeBaron On The Endowment

Ross Wesley LeBaron, in January 1983

Steve McKinley recollects a conversation with Ross W. LeBaron about the endowment in 1995. The “ambiguous answer” given by Ross, according to Steve, made him “feel better about the changes [made by the LDS Church] in the endowment”. He says he realized that “the reason the endowment was taken away by the Lord was because people didn’t understand it. It didn’t work for them. … It made them responsible for things they didn’t understand.” In this interview, Steve also talks about the way Ross LeBaron gave him instructions and tells an anecdote on Ross’s excitement while watching a music concert on TV.

See the first part of this interview here.

Ross LeBaron: Keys of The Priesthood

 

Transfiguration of Jesus, by Carl Bloch.

THE KEYS OF THE PRIESTHOOD

“What are the keys of the priesthood”?  “This generation is not worthy to know”.  John Taylor.

Neither is this generation. Ross W. LeBaron.

There is a very good reason why the orders of the priesthood were not taught in plainness. All one has to do is to look around themselves and see the many claimants to the keys, powers and authority of the Holy Priesthood and they will understand.

By not understanding the truth, they have all claimed the wrong keys, to the wrong office, of the wrong order, of the wrong priesthood, of the wrong dispensation.

“For your iniquity was your mother put away”. Isaiah ch. 50.

The finger of God is pointed directly at the offspring of the Mormon Church; for doing the same as the mother Church, in signing their manifesto and rejecting those holding the keys of the priesthood. Continue reading

Ross LeBaron: The Heir of Joseph Smith

Ross LeBaron Revelation Firstborn

Ross Wesley LeBaron in January, 1984. | Photo courtesy of Tom Green

REVELATION given to Ross W. LeBaron, at East Mill Creek, Utah, in the spring of 1940. While walking home, a distance of about two miles, I was praying to know whether it was the Lord’s will that my sister Lucinda should marry John Butchereit or not. My father would not give his consent, but I felt that he should.

As I was praying, I heard a voice say, “It is my will that they marry”. While I was under the spirit, the thought came to me to ask other questions concerning things that I would like to know about; and I asked the Lord how the sealed records would come forth, and I heard a voice say, “The sealed records are now in the hands of the Indian prophet”.

(It has been twenty-one years, and some times it makes me wonder; but that is what the voice said, and the scriptures confirm that they will come forth through the Indian prophet.)

As I walked along. I was contemplating my relationship with the Fundamentalist people, and feeling very downcast and rejected, and I heard a voice say, “The Lord will give you more intelligence than any man among them.”

(I wondered by what principle or for what reason the Lord would give me more intelligence than any man among them.

I was later reading the story of Enoch; and it seems that he was also wondering why he was the Lord’s servant.

I had understood for some time that I was the patriarchal heir of the prophet Joseph Smith; but neither the Church or the Fundamentalists had an office in their  organization for an heir of the prophet, so I considered it an honor with no responsibility.

I told my wife of the manifestation concerning Lucinda, and she went to see Bro. John Y. Barlow, who was at that time head of the Fundamentalist council.

He told her that he agreed with my view on the matter, and that some day I would be head of the group.

A few nights later as I lay in bed I heard a voice say. “John and Lucinda are married”; which I later found to be true.

I told John and Lucinda, and also my wife before they told me. John said, “May-be you are right”.)

At the dedication of John and Lucinda’s home in the summer of 1940, I met for the first time, Heber Chase Kimball; who introduced me to his grandfather’s cane; which I had before read about. He said that he was the heir of his grandfather, Heber C. Kimball, and I told him that I was the heir of the prophet Joseph Smith.

We were friends as long as he lived, his home was my home; and my car carried his last earthy remains to their place of rest, at St. David, Arizona.

In the death of Joseph W. Musser and Heber Chase Kimball, it is as though an age of time has passed away and as if we are entering a new era in which something is lost that cannot be replaced.

In Bro. Kimball and his family, I found true friends, and in Brother Musser, an understanding of all things that I ever discussed with him.

I knew that Bro. Musser held the Key and power of endless lives; for the Lord revealed it to me; and he knew that I held the patriarchal Keys of the house of prophet Joseph Smith; for the Lord revealed it to him, and he confirmed it on April 3rd, 1951.


Reference

LeBaron, Ross Wesley. “Behold, I say unto you: THE REDEMPTION OF ZION must needs come by power…” [The Yellow Book]. The Church of the First-born. [circa 1962], pages 5-7. Spelling and capitalization as in the original.


Note

Information on the canes owned by Heber Chase Kimball and others can be found here, here and here.

 

Steve McKinley: Ross LeBaron’s Teachings on Agency

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Ogie’s Cafe, in West Valley, UT meeting place for Ross LeBaron’s Church of the Firstborn in the 1990’s. | Photo: Antonio Trevisan

“Steve, do you know why the planets stay in orbit?,” Ross LeBaron asked. In this interview, Steve McKinley tells about meeting Ross LeBaron for the first time and his teachings about agency.


Reference

McKinley, Steve. Interview given to Antonio Trevisan on April 11, 2014.

The Improvement Era: Excommunication of Ross LeBaron and Thelma Cox, 1944

In its November 30, 1944 edition, The Improvement Era announced the excommunication of Ross Wesley LeBaron and his wife Thelma Elena Cox LeBaron. Their names were part of a list of 33 men and women who had been excommunicated from the LDS Church in the previous months of 1944. The Church magazine stated they had been both excommunicated on April 18, in the Third Ward, Liberty Stake (Southeast area of Salt Lake City, Utah). By the time, Ross and Thelma had been married for about eight years. The couple later separated.

Three of Ross LeBaron’s siblings were also listed: Ervil M. LeBaron, Alma Dayer LeBaron and Benjamin T. LeBaron. Their excommnication had occurred in June that year, in the Mexican Mission. The magazine might have missed another LeBaron though: Joel LeBaron.

Joel and Ervil LeBaron were serving as LDS missionaries in Mexico when they learned of Alma being on church trial. They abandoned their mission to go to the aid of their brother and were both excommunicated on the same date. This picture of the Mexican Mission, taken in 1943, includes Joel and Ervil LeBaron. Continue reading

Christopher Blythe: The Crafting of a New Religious Movement

The following is an excerpt from historian Christopher Blythe‘s master thesis on Ross LeBaron, submitted to the Utah State University in 2009. In his work, Blythe characterizes Ross LeBaron as “a religion maker in the same sense as Joseph Smith or Jesus Christ, in that he brought forth new concepts, which diverged from previous orthodox norms” (p. 04).

Ogie’s Cafe, in Salt Lake City, Utah used by Ross LeBaron and associates for “priesthood meetings” | Photo: Antonio Trevisan

The Crafting of a New Religious Movement

In order to teach students the intricacies encapsulated in a “full-fledged” religion, Catherine Albanese has developed a system of four Cs: Code, Community, Creed, and Cultus.[1]  The first category, Code, embraces the notion that religions necessarily introduce a system of morals and ethics by which adherents make life decisions.  The second category, Community, includes social structure and hierarchy, as well as the manner in which believers relate to the non-believing world.  The third category, Creed, includes not simply a formal statement of belief, but a discussion of beliefs and theology embraced by the community of believers.  Finally, the fourth category, Cultus, is a technical word simply meaning ritual which embraces both formal ceremony and the practice of the believers. (For example, this includes informal prayer, the study of scripture, and sermonizing.)  In this section, Albanese’s convenient system is used in order to study the religion developed by Ross Wesley LeBaron.  Yet, before we discuss the basic four categories introduced above, a fifth C of particular usefulness when studying Mormon traditions – the claim – is presented. Continue reading

Ross LeBaron and Robert Eaby: Declaration on the Civil Rights Act of 1964

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OFFICIAL DECLARATION

To Whom It May Concern:                                       The following was sustained….

Inasmuch as a Civil Right’s Law has been enacted by Congress, forbidding discrimination against race, creed or color: which Law has been pronounced constitutional by the court of last resort: I hereby declare, that the Mormon Manifesto of Oct. 6, 1890, has been made null and void by said Civil Right’s Act of Congress, signed July 2, 1964.

And that the worthy Saints, by said Act of Congress, have had restored to them their former right’s and privileges, in relation to the Church and Kingdom of God, that were practiced by them before the various discriminatory laws were enacted against them and their religion.

I also declare, that the said Civil Right’s Act of July 2, 1964 was signed at the end of the 120 year period from the martyrdom of Joseph and Hyrum Smith, June 27, 1844. Continue reading