125 years ago today - Jun 9, 1899; Friday

Presidents [Lorenzo] Snow and [Joseph F.] Smith were at the Office. Sister Zina D. H. Young called, accompanied by Sisters Bathsheba W. Smith, Clara Cannon, Minnie J. Snow and Phoebe Y. Beatie. They propounded this question: Shall non-members of the Church be permitted to become members of our Relief Society? Sister Zina stated that she had answered the question in the negative, but in order to satisfy some of the sisters, she had invited the ladies present to hear what the First Presidency had to say about it. The rules of the Relief Society were then read, one of which gave any person the privilege of becoming a member of the organization. These sisters feared that if non-members of the Church should want to join the Society, they might do so, and in some Wards, where they are numerous, they might out-vote the Church members and take possession of the Society's ward property.

The Presidency took the view that membership in the Relief Society should be confined to members of the Church in good standing, and that the rules should be changed accordingly. It was understood that this would be done.

These sisters also asked the question--Is the Relief Society required to pay tithing? President Smith took the ground that it was not required to do so, as the Society's means was already Church means and subject to the authority of the First Presidency. President Snow took the same view. Apostle Brigham Young [Jr.] and Elder Angus M. Cannon were also present, and took part in this hearing.

[First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve minutes]

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