There’s some discussion happening over at 9M concerning changes to Boyd K. Packer’s most recent General Conference talk. While I find the changes to his (probable) statements on homosexuality fascinating, what I’m actually curious about are the changes concerning the Family Proclamation.
In his spoken talk, Elder Packer stated concerning the Family Proclamation:
Fifteen years ago, with the world in turmoil, the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles issued “The Family: A Proclamation to the World,” the fifth proclamation in the history of the Church. It qualifies, according to [the?] definition, as a revelation, and it would do well that the members of the church [to?] read and follow.
The written talk now reads:
Fifteen years ago, with the world in turmoil, the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles issued “The Family: A Proclamation to the World,” the fifth proclamation in the history of the Church. It is a guide that members of the Church would do well to read and to follow.
So the Family Proclamation has been downgraded from a “revelation” to a “guide.” While a “revelation” can certainly be a “guide,” I don’t think the switch can be written off as insignificant on a technicality like that. If the Family Proclamation was truly considered a “revelation,” it makes little sense to alter that description in the printed version.
What does it say about the revelatory process experienced by the leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints when one of its apostles shows confusion on whether something is a “revelation” or just a “guide”? Does this have any bearing on the question of whether or not the prophet has a “bat-phone to God“?