History of the Church Series | BYU Studies

History of the Church Series

April 26, 2017
History of the Church Series
Give Up All and Follow Your Lord: Testimony and Exhortation in Early Mormon Women's Letters, 1831–1839
Janiece L. Johnson

This daily feature is an introduction to a full article by Janiece L. Johnson. 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.

Women composed a significant portion of the early converts who would follow Joseph Smith over hundreds of miles and through the fires of persecution. Lucy Mack Smith, Rebecca Williams, Phebe Peck, and Melissa Dodge represent well the dedication and testimony of such early Latter-day Saint women. Despite separation from loved ones and the dangers and difficulties they would face as Church members, religion was the guiding factor in their lives. These women testified of the value of their experiences and exhorted others to "give up all and follow your Lord" regardless of the trials that were required of them.