When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the religious bands of denomination which have divided brother from brother, and to assume among the Powers of the Kingdom, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all men through Christ are now one priesthood, and that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of personal Calling. That to secure these rights, churches were in good faith instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the consent of the churched, each being led by a common spirit and an uncommon baptism; however when any Form of Governance be it spiritual or political becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right and the responsibility of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new practices, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to best assure both personal destiny and Kingdom mission as described by the Word of God.
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that spiritual practices long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.
But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism to the degree that one’s nation no longer is affected by presence of such religious institutions, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such practices, and to provide new constructs for their future spirituality and that of their children.
And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.