Under leadership of...

The Early Church (1830)


Joseph Smith Jr.
(Community of Christ archives)

Although the church had been functioning by August 1829, it was not officially organized until April 1830 in Fayette, New York. At this organizing conference,  Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery were accepted as leaders of the church. The church began to grow quickly, spreading through family, neighborhood, and friendship networks.

However, there was often hostility from family members and other ministers who were concerned about claims of a contemporary prophet and additional scriptures.

The early church had a strong missionary sense. They felt a special call to bring ministry to the native Americans who were seen as descendants of people spoken about in the Book of Mormon. In the fall of 1830, four men, including Parley P. Pratt, were sent on the first mission to the western limits of the United States. They took a detour to Kirtland, Ohio, so that Pratt could share the gospel with his former pastor, Sidney Rigdon.


Oliver Cowdery
(Community of Christ archives)
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