Online here: https://speeches.byu.edu/talks/john-w-welch_thy-mind-o-man-must-stretch/
In the passage below, he provided a key that explains why, after all these decades of pursuing M2C* as the "only plausible setting" for the Book of Mormon, the M2C scholars have brought the Church to the point where even BYU professors in the Religion Department no longer believe the Book of Mormon is a real history.
On other issues, LDS intellectuals have also capitulated to the critics. They would do well to reconsider what brother Welch taught in this lecture.
The following passage is especially meaningful to me because for decades I too accepted M2C. It was only when I took the intellectual journey brother Welch advises here that I realized what a mistake M2C is.
As you read the passage below, think about how the M2C scholars approach President Oliver Cowdery's essays published as Letters IV, VII and VIII.
I've reformatted the passage to make it clearer, but otherwise it's a direct quotation (blue) with my comments (red).
Under its second bullet point, the BYU Mission Statement speaks of “the pursuit” of truth. It doesn’t speak of “inventing” or “voting on” truth, but rather of “pursuing” truth. We expand our knowledge by looking for things, pursuing things that exist beyond our current understanding.
But a special joy attaches to the discovery of a new insight that began with the thought that something was wrong but turned out to be right.
It’s the joy of finally seeing an odd little puzzle piece snap into place in the bigger picture.
It’s the joy that comes from the great gospel principle of reversal: that by small things come great purposes; that the Lord’s ways are not always the world’s ways (see Isaiah 55:8);
In direct contradiction to this passage, Book of Mormon Central insists on closedness over openness, boldly inhibits further grown, and absolutely forbids further questions that have anything to do with the teachings of the prophets about the New York Cumorah.
Brother Welch continues in this part of the lecture to discuss fiduciary duties. He says, "how much in need we are of a more robust legal approach to the duties owed by people in positions of greatest trust."
I ask, who in the Church has a greater fiduciary duty than teachers at BYU and CES? Parents and Church leaders have given these teachers tremendous trust and responsibility to teach the youth of the Church, but what are they doing with that trust?
They are teaching the youth that the prophets are wrong about the New York Cumorah. They teach them the Book of Mormon by referencing a fantasy map. And they teach them to trust the intellectuals over the prophets.
In my view, that is a serious breach of their fiduciary duty.