By Kent Larsen
LDS Man Muses on History of Kirtland
KIRTLAND, OHIO -- In an article looking at "the soul of Greater Cleveland,"
the Plain Dealer talked with LDS Church member Gary Brimhall of Orem, Utah,
who took time out of a business trip to Cleveland to visit Kirtland. While
walking in the Kirtland Cemetary, next to the Kirtland Temple, Brimhall told
the Plain Dealer, "These are our ancestors and those were amazing, amazing
Brimhall tells the Plain Dealer some of the basics of Mormon history in the
area. "This was the first house of worship for the followers of Joseph
Smith," says Brimhall. "This was a prominent place in Mormon history, and
it's really important to be aware of church history."
Brimhall doesn't dodge a difficult question of Mormon history, after
encoutering the grave of Guy W. Smith, who Brimhall says was a polygamist.
"Well, you know that man was a Mormon because of the way it lists his wives.
I come from polygamist stock myself. I'm not ashamed of it. I'm just glad I
don't have to do it." Unfortunately, some of Brimhalls description of
polygamy would be disputed by most Mormon historians.
Brimhall also mentions an LDS dentist who was in the audience of David
Letterman's "Late Night." According to Brimhall, Letterman asked the dentist
what he would have to do to go inside an LDS Temple. "Well, the dentist told
him, 'You have to become a Mormon,' which means he would have to be baptized
a Mormon. Then he told him, 'You have to stay worthy and keep the rules for
a year.'" Brimhall found the conversation amusing, "I don't think
Letterman's going to be a Mormon anytime soon. It's not a church for the
lazy. If you stay active, there's a lot you have to do. He is never going to
follow all those rules."
A glimpse into the soul of Greater Cleveland
Cleveland OH Plain Dealer 29Oct00 N6