Michael Otterson: What lies ahead for the Mormons?

Published: Friday, Nov. 9 2012 2:00 p.m. MST

Reflection of the Salt Lake Temple during the Saturday morning session of General conference Saturday, Oct. 6, 2012. Michael Otterson argues that the Mormon moment, instead of ending, is simply the beginning of the full integration of American Mormons into the American story.

Scott G Winterton, Deseret News archives

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Our take: Between The Book of Mormon Musical and the first Mormon presidential candidate, the LDS Church and its members have received an influx of attention during the past year. Mormons graced the cover of Newsweek and starred in NBC Rock Center's "Mormons in America." After Election Night, some feared the "Mormon moment" would end as Mitt Romney's presidential run came to a halt.

In this piece from The Washington Post's On Faith Blog, Michael Otterson, head of Public Affairs for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, argues that the Mormon moment is simply the beginning of the integration of American Mormons into the American story.

It was a long way from American presidential politics, but as Romanians gathered around their dinner tables one day last week, a national television station aired a 20-minute segment on Mormon core values — close families, hard work, clean living and helping others.

Romanian Mormons were surprised, but pleased. With fewer than 3,000 of them in the country, they aren't used to being on prime time.

Three days later and 1,500 miles to the west, curious journalists turned up at Mormon Sunday worship services in at least six separate congregations in France. The following day the church's volunteer press spokesman in Paris took another dozen calls from reporters.

During that same week German, Spanish and Belgian media seemed to be falling over each other to add their own little waves to the tidal surge of worldwide attention that has washed over The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, especially in the past year.

Nowhere has that scrutiny been more intense than here in the United States. Dozens of interviews, hundreds of TV reports, thousands of articles and blog posts. Such is the consequence when a member of a minority religion is nominated by his party as a candidate for president of the United States.

Read more about the possible future of the 'Mormon Moment' on The Washington Post.

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