Customer Reviews for

Leaving the Saints: How I Lost the Mormons and Found My Faith

Average Rating 3.5
( 63 )
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(35)

4 Star

(7)

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(4)

2 Star

(3)

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(14)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

11 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

One who studies other faiths besides his own

I found Martha Beck¿s account of her religious experience to be fascinating. Her wit and writing style make for an outstanding read. The outrage concerning this book comes from one segment of American society... people associated with the LDS church. Although I am no...
I found Martha Beck¿s account of her religious experience to be fascinating. Her wit and writing style make for an outstanding read. The outrage concerning this book comes from one segment of American society... people associated with the LDS church. Although I am not Mormon, I have conversed with Elders of the Mormon Church and studied the Mormon religion. Ms. Beck has not revealed anything that has not already been disclosed. A person with an open mind will see how painful it was for the author to separate from family and friends due to the tenants for the LDS Church. Ms. Beck does express rather well her issues with the LDS Church and its leadership as well as her admiration and love for her Mormon friends and family. Some say that what she has written is derogatory and an attempt to defame a religion. Lamentably, the most incensed are the ones who need to consider what Martha Beck has written and explore for themselves the possibility that her points may have merit.

posted by Anonymous on January 28, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

9 out of 20 people found this review helpful.

A church still persecuted

It is okay to write your story and I am not saying Martha Beck isn't telling the truth about what happened to her. There is molestation going on in every religion. The LDS church that I know is a family oriented, loving, christain church. It is definitely not a cult....
It is okay to write your story and I am not saying Martha Beck isn't telling the truth about what happened to her. There is molestation going on in every religion. The LDS church that I know is a family oriented, loving, christain church. It is definitely not a cult. That is absurd. It is 12 million members strong and growing rapidly all over the world. This church is perfect in its beliefs but the members are not perfect and there are wrongs done every day in any religion. I was not born into the LDS church but into a Pentecostal home. I suffered physical and sexual abuse for 17 years. This doesn't mean that the Pentecostal religion is a cult or the members all monsters. As an LDS member, I believe in Jesus Christ and the Bible. Also the Book of Mormon as a second witness to the Bible. There is nothing sinister or cultish about this church. It is a great, magnificent following of people dedicated to serving and following Jesus Christ and living our lives to one day return to our Heavenly Father. What happened to Martha was not the LDS churches fault, it was the fault of her Fatehr who was wrong and what he did was horrific, but he doesn't stand for this great church.

posted by Anonymous on December 29, 2006

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2008

    One who studies other faiths besides his own

    I found Martha Beck¿s account of her religious experience to be fascinating. Her wit and writing style make for an outstanding read. The outrage concerning this book comes from one segment of American society... people associated with the LDS church. Although I am not Mormon, I have conversed with Elders of the Mormon Church and studied the Mormon religion. Ms. Beck has not revealed anything that has not already been disclosed. A person with an open mind will see how painful it was for the author to separate from family and friends due to the tenants for the LDS Church. Ms. Beck does express rather well her issues with the LDS Church and its leadership as well as her admiration and love for her Mormon friends and family. Some say that what she has written is derogatory and an attempt to defame a religion. Lamentably, the most incensed are the ones who need to consider what Martha Beck has written and explore for themselves the possibility that her points may have merit.

    11 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 15, 2007

    A voice for those who don't dare speak

    I laughed, I cried but most of all I found comfort in learning that I was not the only one to go through all of this. To see that my life and experiences in Mormon-land were so identical to someone else is very healing. Like Martha, I also had to leave. This book has helped me to cope knowing that I was not alone.

    10 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 2, 2007

    Harrowing

    The book wasn't what I had expected - I had expected the story of an intellectual's gradual distancing from the LDS Church rather than the gripping story of her coming to terms with childhood sexual abuse. Nonetheless, the story is brutal, honest, well-written and actually (at times) even funny.

    9 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2006

    A church still persecuted

    It is okay to write your story and I am not saying Martha Beck isn't telling the truth about what happened to her. There is molestation going on in every religion. The LDS church that I know is a family oriented, loving, christain church. It is definitely not a cult. That is absurd. It is 12 million members strong and growing rapidly all over the world. This church is perfect in its beliefs but the members are not perfect and there are wrongs done every day in any religion. I was not born into the LDS church but into a Pentecostal home. I suffered physical and sexual abuse for 17 years. This doesn't mean that the Pentecostal religion is a cult or the members all monsters. As an LDS member, I believe in Jesus Christ and the Bible. Also the Book of Mormon as a second witness to the Bible. There is nothing sinister or cultish about this church. It is a great, magnificent following of people dedicated to serving and following Jesus Christ and living our lives to one day return to our Heavenly Father. What happened to Martha was not the LDS churches fault, it was the fault of her Fatehr who was wrong and what he did was horrific, but he doesn't stand for this great church.

    9 out of 20 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2008

    The Manson Family didn't think they were a cult either...

    Those who have berated the author for her brutally honest memoir of her life in the mormon church are only upset because they cannot see the forest for the trees. I was raised Lutheran, baptised mormon at 19 and left the church at 22 and never looked back. I DO know what the church is all about, I have been through the temple ceremonies and have even worn their 'garments', thats magic underwear to the layman. And I can say that this 'church' is without a doubt a cult. No, not every religion is considered a cult and if you believe this then you need to educate yourself. The 'church' is highly secretive (temple ceremonies) and at it's center is the idolization of Joseph Smith. He's pulled one over on millions of people for over 100 years now, including me. Wake up and smell the coffee, your 'church' is a cult and kudos to the author for having the guts to speak out about something so personal. I highly recommend this book to everyone and no, I will not be praying for anyone's salvation.

    8 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 4, 2007

    'Your soul will know the truth'

    When I read these words towards the end of the book, something opened up inside me. As an ardent reader of memoirs, autobiographies and bios, this book will remain on my shelf as a favorite. I received the book as a gift and I hope the giver knows just how many gifts are found within the pages for me. I'm drawn to the authors sense of curiosity, her need to know more and not to stop with the facts (her assertion) of the abuse to herself. Personally I have no doubt about her assertions as to her own experiences. Additionally I relish her own search for her understanding of the 'whys' behind the abuse. This is something that has been helpful and healing for myself. We may never truly know why abuse occurs specific to an abuser, but I find it helpful to look beyond the act or events to see the world that created a place for such abuse to occur. This is a book I recommend to many in various aspects of my life. An excellent read, engrossing, life savingly humorous and fascinating.

    7 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 14, 2006

    Brave, Honest, Well-Written

    I am amazingly impressed with Martha Beck's honesty about such difficult subjects as religion and sexual abuse. I couldn't put the book down. Her writing is clear and honest about her family, Mormonism, and her struggle to cope with her father's sins. She still manages to be entertaining and write with a style that keeps you laughing out loud at her descriptions and clutching your chest at the heart-wrenching way she was treated both by her family and her community. It would have much easier not to write this book but the fact that she did and that so many people have been helped as a result makes her a hero in my book. After reading it there is little wonder that the Mormon community would rally around the Church. You see them with the single star ratings.

    7 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2006

    A glimpse into the 'creepy' mormon religion.

    Well written and very informative. This book provides a factual insight into the creepy, ultrasecretive non-christian religion exposing factual truths that this church's leaders would rather keep hidden. I highly recommend this book.

    7 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 11, 2009

    Couldn't put it down

    Thank you, Martha Beck, for a very honest, personal, heart-wrenching story of your life with the Mormons. My experience doesn't come close to yours, I was raised in a very "normal" Catholic environment. When I went off to college I left it behind--like so many of my cohorts in the 70's-- religion seemed unnecessary and anachronistic. At age 28 I met and married a non-practicing mormon. But over the next 15 years I came to discover the "cultish" nature of his family and upbringing, a culture which turned out to be nightmarish for me and my children. Slowly the beliefs and indoctrination began to unwind and I learned the bizarre reasons for my growing discomfort around my husband and his family. I won't go into detail, suffice it to say that everything you revealed rang true and I have passed the book along to my grown children. I hope it will help them deal with the confused feelings of abandonment they have experienced since "we" walked out on their father.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 12, 2005

    Heartfelt

    Ms. Beck's courage is most striking in her story. Though recovered memories are highly controversial, many of her other experiences with the church are quite truthfully told. This is her story, not a bash-fest. She never expresses hatred towards the Mormon church; she does create a clear picture of how the church operates and why it didn't work for her. Please give her a chance to tell her story- approach it without bias, and you may be surprised by the truth in it.

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2005

    Compelling!

    Bravo! I could hardly put the book down! Beck describes Mormon culture with humor, sensitivity, and accuracy. I was a devout Mormon for 26 years before leaving the LDS Church after finding many contradictions in doctrines, Church history being revised, and learning that Joseph Smith married other men's wives. It takes courage to stand for the truth, especially when it means losing every thing you thought you knew, including your loved ones and 'friends' when they shun you for 'apostatizing.' 'Leaving the Saints' is a compelling account. I, too, 'lost the Mormons' and found Jesus of the Bible! Hallelujah!

    6 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 9, 2009

    Balance the negative with the positive...

    I didn't know much about this religion except that I work with several great LDS folks and have many friends who are LDS also. I know some who have left the church for various reasons. That said and from a non-LDS objective view, I felt the angst of this book. It was very clear the author had been through extremely traumatic experiences in her life of which her recovery from was stifled, by the shame and guilt instilled in this family over religion. While the same could be said about Catholocism, Lutheran or other religions (all have the guilt and shame going...) I found this book's perspective to be a cross between light- hearted and traumatic. It swung like a swing from one mood to the next, leaving me emotionally exhausted in some areas. It is a truly gripping read however and one that left me feeling like saying, 'but hey what about the good things about this religion?'. I've read about many religions - I'm not biased, they all have good and bad to them. For that reason, I caution for people out there to get a balance of the good and bad about the LDS religion. If I only read this, I would be thinking 'bad' about this religion, without giving it a fair and balanced chance.

    5 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 14, 2005

    The TRUTH about the 'one true church'

    This is another excellent book written about the deception that riddles the Mormon faith. Most books have been written by former Mormon's who finally saw through the lies. Martha Beck wonderfully expresses the truth behind the facade of the Mormon Cult. Her ability to find humor, despite the violations of her father and the Mormon hierarchy, are a true testament to her resilience. Most Mormon's would rather believe that things like this do not go on within their community, however, the TRUTH is that sexual abuse among children is rampant within Mormonism. Kudos to Martha for bringing the truth to the public. Hopefully this will enlighten the people that the Mormon Missionaries are trained to prey upon.

    5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 14, 2005

    Leaving the Saints: How I Lost the Mormons and Found My Faith

    This Author is on the forefront and is a pioneer of telling the TRUTH. Every chapter offered AN AWAKENING. It¿s as though the black cloud has been lifted from my nightmares and I could see the light beaming threw the bedroom blinds. As I turned the pages I was there once again. Because I really was. Not with Martha Beck in Utah. I lived the nightmare in California where the cultic followers are abundant. Unfortunately, My mother was born into the cult of Mormonism and so there we were, like prey for the SAVAGES(that dressed extremely nice with big houses) garnishing their white teeth as they attempted to take our souls for their own desires; NOT GODLY OR ANYTHING THAT IS EVEN REMOTELY RELATED TO CHRISTIANITY. I read this book with enthusiasm and perseverance while I desperately held back my repressed anger that had turned to RAGE over the years. In this book as we see the light shinning on evil they become very argumentative or repressed but they refuse time and time again to be wrong and see the TRUTH! Amazing, they are supposedly stoutly educated? Please I beg, if you are a Mormon or Exmormon and are having emotional difficulties seek counseling outside of the cultic Mormon Forced Stronghold. My Family is still active in the cult and I have been threatened and I fear for my family¿s safety. Not an hour in the day goes by that I don¿t pray for their salvation. Although, many fear the truth behind the history of the Mormon Church and for good reason but don¿t give-up! Pray and ask your Lord and Savior with all sincerity for the courage to continue to seek the truth and ye shall find. I now live the life The One and Only True God had intended me to live with faith in Him; not false Prophets.

    5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2005

    Diana Kline, author of 'Woman Redeemed'

    This is an amazing memoir about the life of a woman who grew up betrayed by those who should have protected her. I can easily relate to her pain because my book talks about the same subjects and having grown up Mormon in an abusive environment. Very sad but very true, sexual abuse is an all-too common occurance in the Mormon church, while its leaders go to great lengths to cover up the scandals and crimes. I applaud Martha for her bravery in dealing with an issue that most people would rather stick their heads in the sand about. Her honest, witty, and moving account is nothing short of a masterpiece in literature.

    5 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2005

    Leaving the Saints: How I Lost the Mormons and Found My Faith

    This book fully was meant to enrich the lives of many. The book was written as a journey that was meant to be shared. This Author has gone through (Eyes-Wide-opened) and shared unthinkable childhood memories that can never fully be understood by a true loving human. This dark secret doesn't have to live in shame and self-destruction any longer. This author has open many positive doors to many mormon-women that are living in denial and shame. The Author explains how we can over-come the unthinkable and help others, as well. And those who are still trying to cover-up for a 'church' that practices False-Biblical Teachings and ideals an monstrous (Not a True Godly man) icon by the name of Joseph Smith are more lost than the gentiles. The author discusses the known programming-classes (Primary) that given to and demanded to be taken by small, innocent, naive, easily misguided children(Should be a loving parents first RED-LIGHT). I exscaped from mormonism more than a decade ago and everything that was written is exactly true. They made sure I lost everything including my family. But God was right, They could never take away what 'The One-True God' had given me, FAITH in the truth.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2011

    This is a

    Wonderful book about family, religion and secrets needing healed along with wounds from these areas. Is about Ms. Beck's search for truth, healing, and the power of love and forgiveness in her quest.

    Uplifting and gut wrentching as she battles her own inner struggles and the willingness to see it through.
    Her sense of humor is hilirious and adds levity.
    I recommend reading her book Expecting Adam first. It ties into this as a flow. A mixture of Spirit and being grounded. Fear into Love.
    If in a period of crises now or to be of help if one comes, Expecting Adam can be a human/spiritual REALness. Was also a catapult for this book, Leaving the Saints.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 4, 2008

    Dazed and Confused

    I failed to see the point of this memoir besides Beck trying to find someone to blame for the misfortunes in her life. She used a controversial religion to attract attention but the book was more about her childhood abuse. If she had left the church out of the book, it would have meant a lot more.

    4 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 21, 2007

    perspective please...

    The moment a microcosm is magnified to present a master view of any mass it has lost its veracity. While these experiences sadly may have happened, they are instances connected to the individual and do not provide a realistic representation of a worldwide organization. Those who take it to be so linger in ignorance...they the blind imagining sight.

    4 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2006

    A page turner, reads like a novel

    I couldn't put this book down. People say the Da Vinci code was an exciting story of conspiracy, but this book tops that, considering Martha Beck's is a true story. This is also a great book to read for someone who wants to learn how to overcome being a victim of sexual abuse.

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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