A Brief History of the anti-Mormon Activities of Jim and Judy Robertson
The Robertsons became disaffected and decided that their mission in life was to fight the LDS Church. Mr. Robertson loved putting on anti-Mormon lectures and showing The God Makers film, which had just been released. The film provided a vehicle to get him into unsuspecting churches to vent his spleen. Tape recordings of Mr. Robertson's lectures reveal a man who is not adverse to bending the truth, even to the breaking point.
In his early LDS career, Mr. Robertson was a counselor in a branch presidency. In the LDS Church a "branch" is the smallest congregational unit. A "branch presidency" consists of a branch president and two counselors. This presidency is in charge of the branch. A branch president is under the jurisdiction of either a stake president or mission president.
Mr. Robertson rationalized that since as a "counselor" in a branch presidency he was addressed as "President," that therefore he was actually president of a branch. Because a branch president can be compared in function to a bishop, Mr. Robertson further rationalized that he could legitimately claim that he served as a bishop.
However, in LDS practice, though branch presidencies and bishoprics have similar functions, there is a difference in their level of authority. One of the best ways of seeing this difference is to note how bishops and branch presidents were set apart for their callings at the time Robertson began making his claim. In a bishopric, the bishop was set apart by a member of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles while a branch president was set apart by either the stake or mission president, both of whom were under the jurisdiction of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles. While that procedure has now changed, a counselor in a branch presidency is not a Bishop.
Mr. Robertson got away with this nonsense even though it was pointed out to him quite clearly that there was a significant difference between a counselor in a branch presidency and a bishop. After bilking some generous people out of money with his anti-Mormon rhetoric, Mr. Robertson and his wife decided to go on a mission to Samoa. They spent several years there and have bragged about their success. However, a former Samoan Mission President told Stan Barker that, though the Robertsons had some initial success in leading members away and slowing the growth of the Church, the trend later reversed and the LDS Church grew faster than it ever had before.
Mr. Robertson turned leadership of Concerned Christians over to others while he was in the south seas, and resumed command when he and his wife returned home.