Examining the claims of Jonathan Neville and the Heartland movement

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Those who live in glass houses, pt. 12

(Part twelve of a series.)

glass houseNetflix recently debuted their three-part documentary series, “Murder Among the Mormons,” about forgerer and murderer Mark Hofmann.

Ever eager to use a current event as a cudgel with which to attack his foes, in a March 10, 2021, blog post, Jonathan Neville once again compared Mark Hofmann to scholars who disagree with the “Heartland” theory of the Book of Mormon:
Erasing Church history for ideological reasons, the way our Church historians and our M2C* citation cartel does, is just as destructive to the pillar of social trust as Hoffman’s [sic] effort to create new history through forged documents.

Censoring actual history is the mirror image of forging historical documents.

Both produce a distorted understanding of history that undermines social trust. They just take different routes to get there.
Since Neville thinks it’s okay to compare those with whom he disagrees to a sociopathic serial killer, perhaps this is a reasonable time to ask:
Which side of the Heartland/“M2C” debate promotes forgeries and pseudo-history for money?
—Peter Pan
* “M2C” is Jonathan Neville’s acronym for the theory that the Book of Mormon took place in Mesoamerica and that the hill Cumorah in the Book of Mormon is not the same hill in New York where Joseph Smith received the plates of Mormon.


  1. Neville once again manages to top himself.

  2. There is a banner on the top of Neville's blog which contains this quote:

    "However, we think their single-minded focus on the Mesoamerican/two-Cumorahs theory (M2C) undermines their mission and contradicts the Church's policy of neutrality."

    Book of Mormon Central is not affiliated with the Church, just as the FIRM foundation is not. Since they are both independent organizations, how can Johnathan make that accusation when the organization he belongs to is ALSO biased towards it's geographical approach? NEITHER organization is neutral, and that's okay because they are not affiliated with the church. I am utterly baffled at his accusation. Why does Book of Mormon Central have to be neutral but FIRM does not? That's what his implication seems to be.

    1. I also tend to disagree with him on which side has the “single-minded focus.”

    2. Absolutely. Ever since I came across this blog, I've been spending the last few months reading material from Rod Meldrum, Hannah Stoddard, and Neville. From what I can tell the Leaders of the Heartland Organization seem to be quite active in their attempts to:

      -Undermine Church Curriculum and those who develop it
      -Discredit scholars who hold differing opinions from them
      -Use attacking/insulting language that caters to people's enmity (much like an abrasive talk show host such as Sean Hannity)
      -^In doing this, gather more followers to their cause and bring in more revenue for FIRM

      The wording Neville choses in his blog creates enmity, pride, and tribalism among those who absorb the content. Calling anyone who disagrees with him part of a "cartel" is the very antithesis of what the Savior taught us about contention. Sad all around.

      You mentioned some time ago that you have some knowledge of forthcoming machinations/material from Neville and his group that was disturbing. I'm curious if you can elaborate on that yet?

    3. I wish I could say more at this time, but I need to verify my sources and determine what can be published.

      If true, it's very disturbing—but unsurprising.

    4. Understood. I'll stay tuned.


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