Letter to Editor, 22 January 1840

gious Society is fostered and an other proscribed in  its spiritual privaleges and the individual rights  of its members as citizens denied
<10> I believe that all religious Society Societies have a right  to deal with its <their> members for disorderly conduct  according to the rules and regulations of such so cieties provided that such dealing be for fellow ship and good Standing but we <I> doo not be lieve that any religious Society has authority  to try men for <on> the right of property or life to take  away <from them> this world’s goods or put them in Jepar dy either life or limb neither to inflict any  fisical [physical] punishment upon them They can onley  excommunicate them from their society and  with their with draw their <from their> fellowship
<11> I believe that men should appeal to the  Civel law for redress of all wrongs and grieve ences where personal abuse is inflicted or the  right of propperty or character infringed where  such laws exist as will protect the Same but  we <I> believe that all men are Justified in  defending thems Selves their friends and prop erty and the government from <the> unlawful assau lts and encroachments of all persons in times of ex igincies where immediate appeal cannot be—  made to the Laws and relief afforded
<12> I believe it just to preach the Gospel to  the Nations of the Earth and warn the Righteous  to Save themselves from the corruptions of the world  But I do not believe it right to interfear with  bond Servants neither preach the gospel to nor  baptize them contrary to the will and wish of  their masters nor to meddle with or influence  them in the least contrary to the wish to cause  them to be dissatisfied with their Sittuations  in this life theirby jeopardiseing the lives of men  Such interfearence we I believe to be unlawful  and unjust and dangerous to the peace of  every government allowing human beings to  be held in Servitude
<13> It has been reported by some vicious or de[s]igning  characters that the church of Latter Day Saints  believe in having their pro[p]erty in common and  also the leaders of sade church controlls Said—  propperty This is a base fabrication without  the least the least shadow or collering of any th ing to make it out of but on the contrary no  persons feelings can be more repugnant to such [p. [3]]
JS, letter, Brandywine, PA, to the editor of The Chester County Register and Examiner, 22 Jan. 1840; unidentified handwriting with signature of JS; four pages; private possession.