34 comments for “President Hinckley on Larry King “Live” Tonight!

  1. December 26, 2004 at 11:27 pm

    Was this “regularly scheduled”? Or does Larry want someone to comment on the “biblical”/”end of the world” earthquake/devestation?

  2. December 27, 2004 at 12:49 am

    It was taped on Thursday, Lyle, so they didn’t talk about the earthquake.

  3. December 27, 2004 at 4:05 am

    and at least in philly, it was pre-empted by earthquake/tsunami news

  4. Randy
    December 27, 2004 at 10:12 am

    I missed it. Anything noteworthy?

  5. David King Landrith
    December 27, 2004 at 10:32 am

    It was your typical softball, Larry King interview. President Hinckley, though, came across as charming, humorous, and affable. Not quite what you might expect from reading Alma, but very good by today’s standards.

  6. Will
    December 27, 2004 at 10:46 am

    CNN has posted a transcript of the interview here:


  7. Kaimi
    December 27, 2004 at 1:29 pm

    It was kind of funny yesterday in priesthood — the Bishop told everyone about the interview, and noted that Larry King’s wife is LDS (is that true? I’m not sure) and that he’s very friendly to the church. He ended with the line “Larry King is practically a Mormon himself.”

    Given that Larry King is most famous (apart from his professional career) for the number of wives he had, I’m not sure that that’s the kind of statement we want to be making.

    (However, in King’s defense, he married his seven wives in seriatim — and following divorces — rather than all at once).

  8. December 27, 2004 at 1:52 pm

    Larry King’s wife is LDS. He has mentioned it several times himself. His wife is the sister of former BYU QB Bret Engemenn (sp?). LK has had Pres. Hinckley on his show several times now and is very fond of him and the church. While not LDS himself, Mr. King is certainly a “friend of the church”….

  9. danithew
    December 27, 2004 at 3:31 pm

    I watched a tiny bit of the interview last night and read the transcript this morning. It’s pretty good stuff. The Church has been in the habit of giving prominent personalities a copy of their genealogy. My bro-in-law has told me that this might be a new missionary approach as well — apparently it’s a pilot program in CA right now to try bringing different people a copy of their genealogy or to offer them a copy of their genealogy. I don’t know much else about it though.

  10. D. Fletcher
    December 27, 2004 at 3:48 pm

    Larry’s wife is Shaun Engeman, one of the cousins of the King family (no relation to Larry King, the King family were entertainers, the King Sisters, anyone?)

  11. Marc D.
    December 28, 2004 at 3:56 am

    I have a friend who is gay and a great member of the church but he was devastated when he heard this part of the interview.

    ‘KING :But as the mores have changed – for example, I know that the Church is opposed to gay marriage.

    HINCKLEY: Yes.

    KING: Do you have an alternative? Do you like the idea of civil unions?

    HINCKLEY: Well, we’re not anti-gay. We are pro-family. Let me put it that way.

    And we love these people and try to work with them and help them. We know they have a problem. We want to help them solve that problem.

    KING: A problem they caused, or they were born with?

    HINCKLEY: I don’t know. I’m not an expert on these things. I don’t pretend to be an expert on these things. The fact is, they have a problem.’

    So my friend has a problem and so do thousands of others in the Church. You would think a prophet of the Lord would pray to the Lord to know if it’s born that way or a choice but when you read about how he doesn’t seemed to be very sure about the answers he gets (example the way he ‘thinks’the building of the conference center was an answer he got from the Lord)I would not call this interview faithbuilding.

  12. December 28, 2004 at 10:30 am

    I believe, President Hinkley handled himself very well in that portion of the interview. There are a lot of things to be said for the church’s position and it is probably too time consuming to go into them in a short interview like this one. Pres. Hinkley did the best with his time.

    No member of the church should be shocked at this statement its a pretty common belief the church has had for some time.

    As for why Hinkley couldn’t say where the cause came from, and this is my opinion only, isn’t it possible that both are valid. Some people make a choice and others are born that way. In that sense no one could make a blanket statement that everyone has the same cause, just that they share the same problem and we would like to help.

    King, and perhaps others will try to focus on the problem statements rather than the anti-gay pro family statement. Remember Christ loved the sinner but hated the sin. This is the sentiment I think President Hinkley was trying to convey.

  13. December 28, 2004 at 1:17 pm

    Perhaps “faith building” is believing the best of an individual; esp. a prophet; e.g. that he _has_ prayed about it & the Lord simply hasn’t answered.

  14. Marc D.
    December 28, 2004 at 3:32 pm

    If he had prayed about it he would have received an answer.

    KING: When you pray, what is that? What’s occurring? Are you talking to God? You’re a prophet, so God talks to you.

    HINCKLEY: I’m talking to God, yes. I do pray. Of course I do.

    KING: What do you do when they’re not answered?

    HINCKLEY: Well, they are answered, but not always just the way you’d want them.

  15. December 28, 2004 at 3:37 pm

    Hm…I don’t suppose that “but not always just the way you’d want them” also includes the possibility of “no answer for now”? Or that an “answer,” i.e. a response, can also include a response of no “definitive” or explanatory answer?

  16. Ivan Wolfe
    December 28, 2004 at 7:26 pm

    Or a partial answer?

    Maybe God didn’t tell Hinckley what causes homosexuality, but did tell him it was a “problem”?

    Or an answer Hinckley doesn’t understand yet and needs a few months/years to ponder?

  17. ptf
    December 29, 2004 at 10:40 am

    My main concern when watching the interview was that Hinckley kept answering with “I think so” when he should have simply said “Yes”.

    for example:

    KING: And that came from something higher than you.

    HINCKLEY: I think so.

    This concerned me since I had just recently read Ballard’s talk on Pure Testimony from the last conference.

  18. danithew
    December 29, 2004 at 10:49 am


    I had the same reaction to President Hinckley’s use of the words “I think so.” It sounded more like an opinion than personal knowledge. As I more or less stated above, I feel a bit out of place being critical of our prophet. So I decided he must have had good reasons for not sounding more affirmative/positive in his responses to some of Larry King’s questions.

  19. ptf
    December 29, 2004 at 10:57 am

    The only explanation that I can come up with is that his priority was gentle PR in the hopes that people will then be open to talking to a member or the missionaries. But as a member I kind of gasped!

  20. cooper
    December 29, 2004 at 11:15 am

    Oh my! a 94 year old prophet used “I think so” instead of yes. Please people. Even 94 year old prophets, especially after losing the love of their life just a few short months ago, have problems expressing themselves occasionally. When you factor in the emotion of the season, missing her dearly, and being asked to “preform” during this first holiday season since her death could simply have been too much. He is a prophet of God. There is no ambiguity there and to pick apart everything he says in a simple interview is wrong.

  21. danithew
    December 29, 2004 at 11:15 am

    We’re so accustomed to hearing absolutes such as “I know” in testimony meetings where members are gathered together. I wonder how often we soften that “I know” to “I think so” or “I believe” when we are in settings that are much less populated with Mormons. Perhaps it is a way to show some respect and appreciation for the differing beliefs and feelings of others who are listening or participating in a discussion.

  22. danithew
    December 29, 2004 at 11:43 am


    The reason we pick apart everything he says is because he is a prophet of God. Otherwise it probably wouldn’t be as big a deal to us what he says. At the same time I don’t really disagree with the substance of what you are saying. I think we should allow him as a prophet to follow the inspiration he receives and not doubt that he knows what he is doing and why he prefers a certain approach to this situation over another. This is Larry King after all. If the questions were being asked by a mob guy pointing a gun at him then perhaps he’d have that “dyed blue through and through” type of approach to the situation.

    It appears that this discussion of President Hinckley’s “soft” approach to this interview is being disussed on two threads simultaneously.

  23. ptf
    December 29, 2004 at 2:00 pm

    I’m not trying to pick apart the prophet. I was more just expressing my personal reaction to the interview. What he said and the way he said it caught my ear. I certainly wasn’t looking for faults. I was more looking for possible explanations… and the responses definitely give some possible reasons, amongst them the fact that he is human and subject to age, loss, stress, etc. as you suggest.

  24. Sheri Lynn
    December 30, 2004 at 10:38 pm

    I don’t have cable, and didn’t get to see it, but I don’t recall that we’re advised to take CNN as a scriptural source. I believe this was a gentle prophet talking to gentiles. He could stand on a wall condemning them, but how well would that work today? I think there’s a reason we’re supplied with a living prophet. People are no longer particularly inclined to listen to shouting from the city wall.

    When he talks to us, on the other hand, he need not be diffident.

  25. tanya cuckow
    January 7, 2005 at 9:40 am

    with reference to the comment “I THINK SO” the empheses should be on the I not the word think.

  26. K.Buckle
    January 9, 2005 at 12:01 am

    President Hinckley is a prophet of God. He acts as a link to God and was representing the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. So what he said regarding the gay issue is not just his (as Shaun would say) ” sheer idiotic views,” but God’s divine opinion as well. I definitely do not believe that God’s opinion is idiotic.
    In regard to the ‘I think so’ argument, I see it as a form of answering in the affirmative. I think that if President Hinckley had answered any other way then he would have seemeed a little aggressive. Well as agressive as a 94 year old prophet of God can be. And that may have been damaging to missionary work.
    The prophet did a great job. It would be a hard thing to do to represent millions of people while Larry King is asking controversial questions.

  27. Tom Haws
    January 10, 2005 at 6:30 pm

    The more personally pertinent question is not whether President Hinckley is a prophet of God, but whether I am myself. He ought to be at his age, and so should any other mature believer. Anybody who is not has simply taken quite apathetically the challenge to walk in the light, to seek, ask, and knock. The earth is full of true prophets.

    Said Moses, “Would that all the Lord’s people were prophets.”
    Said Amos, “Their old men will dream dreams and their young men will see visions. The whole earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord.”
    Said Mormon, “If such things are done away, wo be unto the children of men.”

    Let us call mightily on God and walk ourselves in the light of his love.


  28. Pete Smith
    January 18, 2005 at 3:13 am

    I was just amazed when I read some of these comments. I am a gay member of the church who has chosen to live a life of chastity and stay within the church. Posts on both sides of this issue just seemed to be missing the boat to me.

    First off — somebody had the audacity to say that if the President Hinckley said it, it is also God’s opinion. That is shear ingorance. One of the prophet Joseph Smith’s greatest fears was that the people would try to make him out to be a pope figure — one who was supposedly infalliable and whose every word was the word of God. He taught repeatedly that a prophet was only a prophet when he was acting as such, the rest of the time he was just a man. An offhanded comment in an interview can hardly be claimed to be the will and mind of the Lord. He is a prophet though, and when he speaks the word of the Lord, it is true and binding upon us.

    Ok, now the other side. I think a lot of this discussion about if he could have known or not about why people are gay and so forth really misses the point. He didn’t know, and said he didn’t. That is not being feeble as so many suggest, that is being *humble*, like a prophet is supposed to be. There is no need to make excuses for him.

    Could he have known? Maybe the Lord would tell him ig he asked, and maybe not because the church wasn’t ready for the answer. I would honestly be really suprised if it was something that he did spend time praying about. The question of whether a gay person is born that way, or whether it is developmental doesn’t really matter. I didn’t choose it either way. That is all that matters to me. Nothing is solved, or even helped, by knowing this. And it is probably a combination of the two anyway. There is no salvific value in the knowledge for anyone, so why would a prophet spend his time praying about it? He is really busy, has the entire human race on his mind, and thus has a whole lot more important things than that to be spending his prayer time on.

  29. derren
    January 18, 2005 at 9:00 am

    The President of the Church was invited for the 4th time as a guest for Larry King Live on Cnn.
    I was delighted to see him talking outside a Mormon environment. He appeared powerful as always. However it was another big disappointment for me to hear him saying that he believes I ‘’have a problem’’ since I am gay. It was a disappointment for me also to hear the Prophet enodorsing such openly a Neo-Con agenda, whith social consequences that I prefer not to mention in this post.
    I understand the theological point of view of the Church (I still belong to), but at the same time I found inappropriate the use of the word ‘’problem’’ to describe someone’s sexuality.
    However I found extremely interesting the statement made by the Prophet himself when he claims he is ‘’ not expert on these things – whether someone is born gay or whether he lately becomes gay’’. This statement has potential revolutionary implications that no-one has yet spotted.
    When the Prophet is inspired by God via a revelation he does not express any theological hesitation. Taling at Larry King Live he did.
    It happened when he claimed ‘’not to be an expert on these things’’ – question being whether he belived someone borns gay or actually becomes homosexual later.
    Hinckley did not have an answer for that and the consequences for that, in my view, are tremendous. Not knowing theologically if someone is or is not BORN gay means that there is NOT an official position over the issue. And claiming that someone is eventually BORN gay requires the need for a space for gay people in the Salvation Plan. Very often I mentioned my belief about the possibility than in the next decades the Church would eventually endorse a same-sex-marriage policy, not because of the changes that it would be challanged to face within society, but because a Revelation would come.
    I believe in fact that the Salvation Plan as it is know today is incomplete. The Church is in fact not ready for such a revolutionary concept. However I do believe that this Revelation would eventually come, and the Prophet’s words made my belief even more stronger.
    A black Prophet ? – King asked – ‘’there could be’’ – Hinckley said.
    A gay Prophet ? – I ask – ‘’there will be’’ – I hope.

  30. ADMIN
    January 18, 2005 at 11:38 am

    (See http://www.timesandseasons.org/misc.php#policies ).

  31. derren
    January 19, 2005 at 4:54 am

    If the last entry from admin is referred to me I do want to specify that I have read and understood the policies and that there is nothing in my post that is in contrast witht he rules of the forum. My wish of a gay Prophet is just my personal view and is not intended in offending the person of President Gordon B. Hinkley. Your last entry prooves again how difficult it is to express a point of view that is not coherent with yours. There is no freedom of speach in this forum on matters like this. I think I always gave an intersting imput. Admin shows it is not appreciated. Better leave this forum, a real shame, since it is extremely well done. Goodbye. A free-thinker.

  32. Kaimi
    January 19, 2005 at 7:39 am

    Umm, Derren,

    The admin note was not directed at you. We got (and removed) some very over-the-line comments yesterday. The removal of inappropriate comments (which followed yours, but are now gone) makes it look like the admin note was meant for you. It wasn’t.

  33. derren
    January 20, 2005 at 1:03 am


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