The official manuals of instruction for Priesthood and Relief Society lessons, titled Teachings of Presidents of the Church, are little more than farces from a historical standpoint.
The following is from the introduction to the first manual, subtitled "Brigham Young," © 1997 by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, page v., last paragraph, beginning with the third sentence. Comments, in italics, are mine:
"Each statement has been referenced, and the original spelling and punctuation has been preserved;"
So the words themselves have been changed? Why? What's there to hide?
"however, the sources cited will not be readily available to most members."
Why not? Wasn't Brigham Young a prophet of God? If so, shouldn't his words be readily available to all the world, and all the more especially the church's own membership? Once more, what's there to hide?
"These original sources are not necessary to have in order to effectively study or teach from this book. Members need not purchase additional references and commentaries to study or teach these chapters. The text provided in this book, accompanied by the scriptures, is sufficient for instruction."
What if I want to purchase these additional references? Why bother telling me I don't need to? Why all the fuss? Are there going to be contradictions or misquotes if I do? Again, what's there to hide?
And the following is from the introductions to both the second and third manuals, subtitled "Joseph F. Smith" and "Harold B. Lee," respectively, © 1998 and 2000 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc., page vii (in both). The comment in italics is mine:
"It is not necessary or recommended that members purchase additional commentaries or reference texts to support the material in the text."
Why is it not recommended?