1661: Growing Up As a Grandson of a Mormon Apostle (Joseph B Wirthlin)- Greg Gerritsen Pt 1


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Join us for Part 1 of our 2-part interview with pilot Greg Gerritsen – grandson of the late and much believed Mormon or LDS Church apostle Joseph B. Wirthlin. In this series, Greg shares with us many fascinating stories about his experiences with his grandfather including:

  • The tendency of LDS church members to overly worship General Authorities, along with the unhealthy obsession some Mormons have with “access” to General Authorities.
  • The undying love Elder Wirthlin had for his wife (Elisa), his family, and for football.
  • The extent to which nepotism, cronyism, and patronage play a part in the selection of LDS church General Authorities.
  • The downsides/sacrifices of being an LDS church Apostle/General Authority.
  • The existence of divisions and “cliques” in the LDS church quorum of the 12 Apostles.
  • The unhealthy pressures and expectations put on the children and grandchildren of LDS General Authorities, that often lead to a familial emphasis on “public appearance” over healthy relationships.
  • The “code” that exists within families of LDS General Authorities to never do or say anything to bring dishonor to the family name or church, including speaking out about a loss of faith, which leads many descendants of LDS apostles to lie about and/or hide their loss of faith.


1662: Losing Faith as the Grandson of an LDS Apostle (Joseph B. Wirthlin) – Greg Gerritsen Pt. 2


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Join us for Part 2 of our 2-part interview with pilot Greg Gerritsen – grandson of the late and much believed Mormon or LDS Church apostle Joseph B. Wirthlin. In this series, Greg shares with us more of his own journey in the Church including:

  • Greg’s mission experiences, many made more difficult by knowledge of his relationship with Elder Wirthlin
  • What Greg learned at Weber that began affecting his testimony
  • How often General Authorities miss out on family activities and events in service to the Church
  • How the Church deals with aging apostles once they begin to lose lucidity
  • How Greg lost his LDS testimony in spite of descending from the Mormon “elite,” and what led him to want to tell his story.

Also, Greg shares his opinion on whether his grandfather actually “saw” Jesus Christ as an LDS apostle. We hope you enjoy!!!

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Show Notes:

Part 1

Part 2


  1. VFanRJ September 21, 2022 at 10:14 am - Reply

    Time very well spent listening to Greg’s experiences. So many insightful anecdotes both from John and Greg.

  2. Cheryl Bleyl September 21, 2022 at 4:21 pm - Reply

    I am an active member and do listen to certain episodes of your podcast. I think Greg did a great job and absolutely did not disrespect anyone with what he shared. He made some statements that are so true, like, “Man-Worship”. How us members take time away from their families and such. Thank you Greg for being brave to share your experiences. It really opened my eyes.

  3. Bill Jones September 23, 2022 at 8:40 am - Reply

    Kudos for the Dame Lillard Reference–JD flexes as a serious NBA fan!!

  4. Sydney Spangler September 25, 2022 at 2:58 pm - Reply

    Loved these interviews and they’ve left a significant impression. Greg is an incredibly insightful, sincere, honest person. It was so lovely to hear about his relationship with and the respect he has for his Granddad (who himself seems to be on some level what many of us longed for the Church to be) – yet at the same time so clearly recognizing the problems with the Church’s truth claims and treatment of people as secondary to its own interests. Also very interesting to hear about life as part of the “Mormon elite,” with lots of touching (and funny) stories. Really great lessons here.

  5. Troy September 26, 2022 at 8:53 am - Reply

    Thank you Greg and John for this episode. I listen to a fair amount of Mormon Stories but I rarely have the stamina to listen to an entire episode, let alone TWO full-length episodes with the same individual. I could have listened to hours more of Greg’s story. Thank you Greg, for sharing your story. So much of what you said, particularly in the second episode, resonated so strongly with me. For example, the feeling of freedom when one allows one’s self to be okay with not knowing, and the marriage-saving wisdom of two spouses allowing each other to have their spiritual journey when it is best for them (I’m also one of the rare miracles of faith journeys not destroying a marriage).

  6. Nefer Polund November 8, 2022 at 7:32 am - Reply

    Greg what a powerful conclusion regarding “having questions ” it was really well said: ” the problem is them preventing us having that discussion”

  7. Kalli November 18, 2022 at 4:04 pm - Reply

    Thanks for sharing. I enjoyed and was touched. I would have liked to hear more about his grandma. And how he viewed her or if she was lesser than. After all, none of us even knew her name. How is that dynamic within the family?

    I left with a high level of respect for Joseph B Wirthlin which is a sign of an interview well-conducted.

  8. C A Brown January 20, 2024 at 11:09 pm - Reply

    Has he had a stroke. His speech pattern is labored and awkward.

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