In 1834, Joseph Smith and members of the Zion’s Camp unearthed a skeleton that was described by Joseph as the remains of Zelph, a renowned white Lamanite prophet who fought in the epic last battles of the Book of Mormon.
Because of the absurdity of the story, as well as its obvious conflict with apologists’ Mesoamerican Book of Mormon model, Zelph is something believing Latter-day Saints may be counseled to “put on the shelf,” along with other historical and doctrinal quandaries. The name “Zelph on the Shelf” pays homage to that concept. Besides, it’s also just really catchy.
This site is run by three post-Mormon millennials who have a love for writing and a little too much time on their hands. All three were once true-blue, dyed-in-the-wool believers who, after sincere and thorough investigation of Mormon truth claims, decided they could no longer remain active members of the LDS church.
The use of pseudonyms serves various purposes. All three contributors live in Utah and prefer not to complicate their personal and professional lives. Posting as controversial historical figures also affords readers a chance to investigate further into the skeletons in the church’s closet (or, you know, shelf).
The two-pronged mission of Zelph on the Shelf is to:
1) Reduce suffering by raising awareness about important issues regarding Mormon doctrine, history, practice, and culture.
2) Validate the needs and experiences of those who have undergone or are undergoing the excruciating process of questioning or leaving Mormonism.
Writing about Mormonism is also therapeutic for the writers. Sometimes errors are made (give Brother Zelph a break!), and so corrections are welcome. Feel free to comment on posts or reach out on the Zelph on the Shelf Facebook page. We welcome content submissions, but acknowledge that not all can be published.
Posted articles are the views of their respective authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the other Zelph on the Shelf writers, Ex-Mormonism generally, shelves of any kind, or the warrior-prophet Zelph himself.
A word of caution—we try to maintain a balance of serious and funny, so you’ll have to use your spiritual eyes to discern which is which (also, our funny articles are labeled “satire”).
Ex-Mormonism life is exhilarating and beautiful. We are sincerely grateful for all the support and love that we have received since beginning this endeavor. We love sharing the journey with you!
Peace and love!
PS. If you would like to donate to Zelph on the Shelf, click the button below! Hey, it beats tithing. And we really really really appreciate it. 🙂