The Church at the Turn of the Century

Church History in the Fulness of Times Teacher Manual, (2001), 68


  1. 1.

    In 1898 the Lord instructed President Lorenzo Snow not to wait to reorganize the First Presidency.

  2. 2.

    The Lord promised to remove the Church from financial bondage if the Saints would pay their tithing.

  3. 3.

    Missionary work expanded during the administration of President Lorenzo Snow.

    Suggested Approaches

  • Discuss the financial difficulties the Church faced because of the plural marriage persecutions of the 1880s. The reform inaugurated by President Snow in the spring of 1899 eventually proved successful in freeing the Church from debt.

  • Discuss the various things done during Lorenzo Snow’s administration to expand missionary work.

    Theme Sources

  • Comprehensive History of the Church, 6:356–85.

  • Readings in LDS Church History, 3:253–70.

    Additional Sources

  • Maureen Ursenbach Beecher, “Leonora, Eliza, and Lorenzo: An Affectionate Portrait of the Snow Family,” Ensign, June 1980, pp. 64–69.

    Places President Snow in his family setting and details his relationship with his gifted sisters.

  • Francis M. Gibbons, Lorenzo Snow: Spiritual Giant, Prophet of God (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1982).

    A one-volume history of the life, career, and Church service of President Snow.

  • Thomas C. Romney, The Life of Lorenzo Snow (Salt Lake City: Deseret New Press, 1955).

    Written at the invitation of LeRoi Snow, a son of President Snow, this book includes much information furnished by LeRoi.

  • Eliza R. Snow, Biography and Family Record of Lorenzo Snow (Salt Lake City: Deseret News Co., 1884).

    An account of the life of President Snow by his sister.

  • Joseph F. Smith, “The Last Days of President Snow,” Juvenile Instructor, 15 Nov. 1901, pp. 688–91.

    President Snow’s second counselor recounts the final events in the life of Lorenzo Snow.

  • Seiji Katanuma, “The Church in Japan,” Brigham Young University Studies, Autumn 1973, pp. 16–28.

    Traces the beginning of missionary work in Japan under the leadership of Elder Heber J. Grant.

  • Murray L. Nichols, “History of the Japan Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1901–1924,” master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, 1957.

    A history of the Church in Japan from its opening by Elder Heber J. Grant in 1901, under the direction of President Lorenzo Snow, until it was closed in 1924 by President Heber J. Grant.

  • Francis M. Gibbons, Heber J. Grant: Man of Steel, Prophet of God (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1979), pp. 110–34.

    Elder Grant’s call to open the Japanese mission, and the struggles he encountered in doing so.

  • F. LaMond Tullis, “Reopening the Mexican Mission in 1901,” Brigham Young University Studies, Fall 1982, pp. 441–53.

    Deals with missionary work among the Mexican people in the late 1800s and early 1900s.

  • Diane L. Mangum, “The First Sister Missionaries,” Ensign, July 1980, pp. 62–65.

    Based on the diaries of the sister missionaries describing their experiences in Great Britain.

  • Calvin S. Kunz, “A History of Female Missionary Activity in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1830–1898,” master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, 1976.

    A detailed history of the first sister missionaries.