Mom of 2, the problem is that no matter how much good we do, the best people say
of us is "Those Mormons are nice people, but boy are they nuts." We're
not comfortable with that characterization, because some of our
"nutty" beliefs are actually quite important to a full understanding
of the purpose of life in our view. And that full understanding has so much more
potential to change people's lives and make them happy than our kind acts of
service alone. I think maybe that if people can see that we put our pants on one
leg at a time, a few of them they might think twice before simply dismissing our
sincere religious beliefs as fairy tales. They might actually give those beliefs
some fair consideration, and they might even sit and think about what they would
mean to them personally. It's worth it if even one person does that.
I would assume that the ad campaign was worked out long before the broadway
production was mounted. Nothing the church does is the result of people standing
around the water cooler and saying, "Hey what about this? Let's do it by
The best kind of "advertising" anyone can do, on a church or
individual level, is to live a good life. Help your fellow man. The LDS church
does this already, but I think it would be better PR for them to donate the
money to a good cause instead of putting up ads telling everybody how normal
they are. Don't force everybody to look at you and see how mainstream you are;
just go about your life quietly and do the best you can, and people will notice
on their own.
Ernest, why would we want to take away Central Americans and Africans? Are they
somehow worth less, because many of them aren't as educated as people in New
York? That doesn't sound very Christian at all. Blessed are the meek, for they
shall inherit the earth...Many that are first shall be last and the last shall
be first...Inasmuch as ye have done it unto the least of these my brethren...
Are you seeing the pattern here? It's no surprise that people who think they
know everything aren't joining the LDS Church. I don't think that is a bad
thing, except as to the standing of those people in the eyes of God, but that is
their choice. I'm okay if people still think we're weird after seeing the ads.
Of course we are different. I think the point of the ads is to show that
different can be a very good thing, not necessarily to show that Mormons are
normal. I know this will be lost on very many people, but many of those simpler
folks that Jesus speeks so highly of will get it. That's really all that matters
Hey, c'mon, that's not fair! My family are converts and everyone has a college
degree in my family (two in business, two in the humanities/languages), two of
us are bilingual, and I am trilingual. Both my sister and I aspire to advanced
degrees, but as that takes additional time and money, we aren't there just yet.
I will admit that finding whole families of "highly educated" folks is
rare at times, but perhaps that is because being learned and being humble aren't
often compatible. Who knows? I have noticed that a growing trend in convert
baptisms is smart, educated teenagers whose friends introduce them to the
Church, and often that is how families are converted. In fact, that is how my
Mormons view these ads and believe they look great, they have a biased view.Non-mormons view these ads and think mormons are still wierd. Take away
Central American and Africa and convert baptisms are down and when there are
converts they aren't exactly educated types who are getting baptized.
@Mormoncowboy:Hmm... I find quite a few entries in the campaign by people
that are pretty much like your "Hi I am Bob, I work for a construction
company..." I found a guy who worked in a bakery, a mother who raised her
kids and now is trying to go back to college, a single mom with 4 kids who
"works for the government in an 8 to 5 job," a professional
housecleaner, a guy who works in the sheetmetal industry.If highly
educated people show up on the profiles more than you would like, it is probably
because those are the people more likely to read internet sites like this and to
take the initiative to write a blurb about themselves.
@Pagan "Why do mormons feel the need to shove their chosen lifestyle in our
face?"You have it wrong. Mormons invite, not shove--mainly
because they believe their religion promotes happiness and they want to
share.On the other hand, part of the reason they feel the need to
share their beliefs is because of all the shoving the world is doing into the
faces of Mormons' children: Gays don't invite; they try to shove
their lifestyle choices into educational curricula and they try to illogically
compare their lifestyle choices with race discrimination, and they try to pass
laws making criminals of those who disagree with their lifestyle choices,
meanwhile forgetting all about laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of
religion.Pornographers don't invite; they try to shove their filth
into our homes and onto our children's cell phones, to enrich themselves.The entertainment industry doesn't invite; it creates outrageous
"entertainments" based on hurtful and false stereotypes that mock our
religion, to enrich themselves. What if the Broadway musical had been a mocking
attack on the "values" of gay people? Think it would win Tony Awards?
I doubt that this campaign is working. It's been largely upstaged by the
excellent "I'm An Ex-Mormon" series on YouTube. You see tons of
"dislikes" for the "I'm a Mormon" videos, and tons of
"likes" for the Ex-Mormon ones. Waste of money that could be better
spent on charity.
Joggle,Prove to me that Satan does not exist. Well, you cant. But
lets say there is no Satan of legends. So what you telling me is that many
people are just plain evil. Well that is a very negative view of the world. I
dont think most people plan on being evil or doing evil things. I never seen a
child that was evil by nature. So if you think we make up satan, well its
better then how you look at people as being evil in nature in a mass scale.
@cg1020cgFirst you have to prove Satan exists! I'm certain you
can't....so the case is NOT closed....far from it!People believe in
Satan ecause they need a reason for evil.... and blaming it on someone is easier
then just accepting that evil simply exists.
Hmmm, to those on this blog that question why would the LDS church put up these
advertisments or question the need for our church or any church to engage in
advertisment. Well, how many times is Satan advertising on the tv or print for
people to follow him? Case closed!!!
Wow! So many opinions about what the church should or should not do with it's
money. If you believe The Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-day Saints is the
true and only church out there run by Christ himself; then you shouldn't have
issue with how or what the leaders do with our tithe money. It's to further the
gospel. I think this is a great idea. I know this is going to open many doors
for people to really know about The Book of Mormon and not what this crazy
Broadway show has to say about it. I can't wait to hear the stories of
conversion this will bring about.
I remember when Conan O'Brian and Andy Richter did the "Mormon Song"
on the tonight show. It was full of gibberish and at the end they admitted they
didn't know enough about Mormons to do a full song. It was great as it made fun
of those that mock Mormons ignorantly. I think there is an interest though to
know more. This campaign can help.All Mormons like raspberry shakes and
trampolines! (Perhaps Utahns, but not just Mormons.)
If the intent was to clear up understanding's then the Church would have
approached the campaign by creating a forum where members submit their bio's
freely, without requiring approval. All bio's would be accepted and posted.
They're not! Instead we get attractive couples who represent middle to high
income brackets telling us how succesfull and interesting they are, and plus
"they're Mormon". How about, "Hi, my name is Bob. I
work for a construction company in Southern Utah, and I'm just a regular guy. My
wife and I have been saving up for three years to remodel our kitchen, and
here's a picture of my family. Oh, and I'm a Mormon".
Advertising religion? I don't think so. This could be an
opportunity clear up obvious misrepresentaions and misunderstandings created by
"but do they know what it means to be a member? Lots of folks are putting
forth incorrect ideas of what it means to be a member of the Church, this
campaign just clarifies the issue. "I don't think this campaign
does anything to tell people what being a member means. The incorrect ideas
people have about the church typically deal more with doctrine than "wow, I
didn't know Mormons could be engineers" type things.
The church is not trying to win a popularity contest, its just trying to state
who we are and what we believe. Insted of letting others define us. xscribeIts because our leader, Christ, said "take this gospel
to the entire world." So we are just trying to follow the true sheppherd.
Sorry, "I'm a Mormon" just seems pathetic--like saying "I'm not a
nut" or whatever. Sometimes it seems the "business" side of the
Church warps/dominates the spiritual side.
Re: "Why do mormons [sic] feel the need to shove their chosen lifestyle in
our face?"We could ask the same question of you, substituting
"LGBT activist" for "Mormon."
Maybe some clarification would be in order. The advertising is there to show
that the caricature of the Church and its members is not factual. There are
many kinds of people who are members of the Church, and we don't wear black
suits and hats and chinstrap beards or practice polygamy, we don't protest at
funerals or worship any other than Jesus Christ. People are very
aware of Mitt and Jon's religion, but do they know what it means to be a member?
Lots of folks are putting forth incorrect ideas of what it means to be a member
of the Church, this campaign just clarifies the issue.
If you have to take out ads proclaiming how normal you are, chances are good
that you're not. This just screams "desperate" to me.
I am an atheist.
@Pagan"Why do mormons feel the need to shove their chosen lifestyle
in our face? :) "That's pretty funny. Maybe the LDS Church
does have something in common with the LGBT community.
Somebody mentioned the humanitarian work the Church does. If you look at the
data the Church provides, over the past 25+ yrs it translates to $25 million/yr.
I would like to see the Church expand it's humanitarian efforts both here and
abroad. The Catholic church in our area provides supper M-F to the homeless
(our Relief Society participates 1/mon). Another (non LDS) church in our area
provides sleeping quarters for homeless every night. A teacher recently told me
she knows/believes there are children living in cars in our school district.
And there was an article in DN not too long ago about a medical clinic in SLC
serving homeless children which always runs short of funds. The need is so great
I suspect there will be a lot of New Yorkers who see these ads and simply laugh
and make a snide remark, but if this whole campaign results in one person
joining the church, it was worth it. As far as the people it alienates, they
weren't interested anyway. It's the same thing with how the church sends out
young, inexperienced, naive 19 year olds as missionaries. The pure in heart will
listen to them. The people who don't take them seriously were never going to
listen anyway. In light of the many widespread misconceptions that
people have about Mormons, I think this advertising campaign is very
appropriate. I also think it is a bit inacurrate to say that the aim of the
campaign is to show that Mormons are normal. Of course we're not normal. Look
around you. Normal is broken. Who in their right mind would want to be normal?
What I think the campaign is trying to show is that although we are different,
we still put our pants on one leg at a time. We're different for sure, but you
don't have to join a convent or give up electricity to be a Mormon.
@Theeng2I find the exact opposite! Opposition is alive and well on
the internet.....and I think the LDS Church is rightfully concerned. The
religion can no longer hide behind the Mormon curtain!! This is why it is trying
to defend itself. I mean no offense, but as somebody who lived outside the
Mormon bubble most of their life....you may be normal people with jobs and
hobbies, but your culture and lives aren't as normal as you seem to think.
Moving here was a culture shock for me. Sincerity or genuineness is not a
virtue I commonly find in Mormons! One of my first encounters involved "the
persecution complex" coming out of thin air without saying a word! Although
misconceptions can occur with just about anything....you all see your religion
as something it is not and the public often rightfully sees "the
religion" for what it is! Many converts find a different truth after they
join and learn about the Church from within. That's why so many leave or become
inactive. The Church paints a picture of normalcy that isn't true.
% New Yorker: I appreciate your follow up and I am not ignoring your kindness.
It is just that it is a lengthy discussion and I don't know that the DN approves
of it. But in a nut shell: I see nothing parsimonious about accpteing a believe
in the Book of Mormon. To the contrary one must jump through a million hoops of
contriditions and unsubstantiated claims. There is no prove or evidense for a
historical Book of Mormon. And therefore, the law of parsimony and the kiss
pricipal are applicable. The believe in the Book of Mormon is no more than a
desire to believe in a work of fiction that one finds comfortable, useful,
inspiring and important to ones life purpose. I suppose. I do believe that the
Book of Mormon has build charactor in many believers, but I also belive it has
kept many from discovering their true identities. Ie: one major example the
Instead of getting enraged about the smut musical remember this. There is such a
small percentage of the population who will ever see the musical, and those
people are mostly regular broadway patrons, who recognize it for what it is. The
vast majority will never see it, and they will soon forget the specifics of what
the play is. All they will remember is something about a play about something
about the Mormons. In most cases that exposure will elevate the existence of the
LDS church into a new recognition, however minimal.
The campaign doesn't bother me much, I don't mind proselytizing. Still, the
"And I'm a Mormon Campaign" should be rather discouraging to the
lower-class Mormons (economically) who seem not to get fair representation from
this campaign. The Church is sending out a subtle message here of who they
prefer to represent them. Not the meek, humble, the poor, that Jesus mentioned
in the Sermon on the Mount, but rather the successful and impressive!
I personnally love it when there is a "big todo" about the Church. It
brings out those who are honestly seeking something and they will investigate
the Church. As a missionary, we could always tell when a local congregation
would have their "anti-Mormon nights". We would tract the following
day and find more investigators that resulted in more converts for us.Keep up the work all you anti's, we love to convert those who are truly
@ Pagan Since when is the LDS Church has the "need to shove
their chosen lifestyle in our face?" I guess we could respond with
"since when do we need people like Pagan to seek out and read articles
about us and then make rude comments"?It is you who chose to
read the article, or read billboards or anything else that is Mormon. If you
don't like it you can ignore it and go about your life.
We need to have ads like this to counteract people like Warren Cole Smith.
RE: J-TX, You state: "Funny, Sergio, I missed your conference talk last
April. Oh, you're NOT a prophet? Well, then, I guess you DON'T speak for God and
Jesus, then, do you?"Thank you for your response J-TX. I guess
I have been reading too many of the Mormon posts where they tell us what God
says,thinks, acts and does, so I got carried away and started thinking like
them. Thank you for bringing me back to reality. If I get carried away again
just bring me my coffe, that usually wakes be up and gets me back on track. I
hope you are having a real good day.
Really, New Yorker? That is rad! I served a mission in Queens/Brooklyn/Long
Island in the last few years and spent some time in the Plainview, NY chapel
built from the Salt Lake Temple model walls created for the 1964 World's Fair in
Queens. I found out about the Church from grandparents and a friend in middle
school with a less-than-soft touch but an earnest heart. And I couldn't be
@ Pagan | 8:53 a.m. June 15, 2011 "Why do mormons feel the need to
shove their chosen lifestyle in our face? :)"Because they are
proclaiming the gospel of Christ and trying to save people ... according to what
they believe.They are all sorts of messages being thrown into our
faces everyday: Political, moral, religious, and commercial. You find the
message distasteful because it goes against your agenda but many find joy and
fulfillment in the LDS message.I find many messages distasteful
because they go against MY beliefs or are designed to separate people from their
money.I often find your prolific comments as an effort to
"shove" your lifestyle in others faces. I know that you see it
differently.I realize that everyone has a right to speak.At
least the LDS message is, in my opinion, an effort to help people. I'm pretty sure you believe the same way about your message.
I would say 1 out of 50 sites on the internet is pro LDS. If we're trying to
get the record straight we have a lot more work to do with the internet.
I think the I'm a Mormon campaign is refreshing and interesting. I trust the
church leadership to be judicious in how they spend money. And these spots are
sure to increase top-of-mind awareness in viewers, which may be just what the
missionaries need as they contact people. We have to remember that
there are millions of people who really have no idea who we are or what we
believe. And if this campaign can put them at ease just a bit and tell them,
"Hey, we're normal people with jobs and lives and hobbies and
culture," they might be more accepting.
@ed in atlThanks for your humor....but unlike your imaginary
friend....atheists are REAL!!
'Funny, Sergio, I missed your conference talk last April. Oh, you're NOT a
prophet? Well, then, I guess you DON'T speak for God and Jesus, then, do you?' -
J-TX | 9:14 a.m. June 15, 2011 So...it's ok for one person
to talk to God... but not another? I'm not trying to
DENY your ability to believe. It is your choice. But I am, and have every
right to, point out that religion dosen't make any sense.
During the polygamy years, we were seen as very odd. Now today in 2011, we are
the normal ones when it comes to marriage. So, YES!!-- today we are normal
and ordinary: it is society that is not. If a person can't say no to gay
marriage, they will never say no again the rest of their life.
Sorry, skeptic. In the story of the great feast in Luke 14, "the lord said
unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come
in, that my house may be filled. For I say unto you, That none of those men
which were bidden shall taste of my supper." The word "compel"
here is the Greek "anagkazo" which can also be taken to mean
"entreat."My personal story is that I found the Church in
1964 only because of the Mormon Pavilion at the New York Worlds Fair. It was a
bold move by the Church that included producing "Man's Search for
Happiness" and building a mock-up of the Salt Lake Temple facade. In 2001-2
I was street preaching in Mannheim and Aachen Germany standing on a turned-over
soda case. No, the scriptures make it fairly clear that the prophet hasn't gone
astray on this.Sorry that I haven't heard from you yet about the BOM
While I am confident that the advertising campaign motives are sincere, the LDS
hierarchy are certainly astute businessmen.I would have to believe
that they have done a cost/benefit analysis of this campaign. And
one factor in that equation would have been new tithing money from potential
converts from this campaign.I am not suggesting that it is only
about the money, but that its impact was considered.
@ sergio | 8:53 a.m. June 15, 2011 "God doesn't approve and Jesus doesn't
like this kind of pandering to human emotions. They look to hear the voice of
truth sayers." Funny, Sergio, I missed your conference talk
last April. Oh, you're NOT a prophet? Well, then, I guess you DON'T speak for
God and Jesus, then, do you?
@ joggleI don't believe in athiests!!
God doesn't approve and Jesus doesn't like this kind of pandering to human
emotions. They look to hear the voice of truth sayers.
Why do mormons feel the need to shove their chosen lifestyle in our face? :)
@Honor Code | 1:29 a.m. June 15, 2011I wouldn't get my knickers in a
twist too much about the LDS Church spending some money on advertising. A major
facet of the Church's mission is to "proclaim the Gospel," and this is
just one of many ways in which it attempts to accomplish that mission.With regard to other things the Church could do that would benefit many,
perhaps you've heard of LDS Humanitarian Services? Or the LDS Perpetual
Education Fund? Or LDS Social/Family Services? If not, you could Google them
and learn a little more about a few of the many things the Church does for the
benefit of people (most without any regard for the recipient's membership or
affiliation status with the Church).
I'm not certain this is necessary. An ad campaign of this nature can cost well
into seven figures. It definitely will raise curiosity and perhaps open some
doors for missionaries, but it seems to me it would be better to spend the money
on humanitarian initiatives.
Re: "I just don't understand the need to advertise one's religion . . .
."I've never understood the need to ridicule or demonize
another's religion. Unless there is some ulterior motive. Such as defeating a
Mormon running for office because you disagree with his positions, but recognize
that a disingenuous attack on his religion is more likely, at least
historically, to defeat him than an attack on his politics.For
This type of political advertising seems awful cheesee for a main stream
religion and not too church like.
They seem kind of desperate. We went from "we are a peculiar people"
to "look we're totally normal".
Truthseeker | 12:25 a.m. June 15, 2011 SLO, CA I swear we Mormons
seem to have an obsession about being with the "in" group like some
popularity contest. Instead, we ought to just live the Gospel, be engaged in
humanitarian efforts in our communities with others and forget about ourselves.
There is an age old adage when it comes to dealing with smut...."I won't
dignify that with a response" I'm going the multimillion $
"glitz" route I think the church could be see as running scared. It's
also possible that somew will construe this as a back door way to support a
political candidate (I mean SERIOUSLY) who doesn't know Mitt's Mormon?) and get
around having to report the $ spent as campaign contributions. There was plenty
of flack over reporting after the prop 8 fiasco. A lesson about
"apprearances" should have been learned.
Dear xscribe: the "ulterior motive" is sharing the Gospel of Jesus
Christ. That's all.I think it's great and I'm glad to hear that the
"Book of Mormon Musical" is actually opening doors for the
missionaries in New York. I'm not surprised.
Spending "money" on advertising is foolish!!! I can think of a lot of
other things the church can invest in that would benefit many and it's not
I swear we Mormons seem to have an obsession about being with the "in"
group like some popularity contest. Instead, we ought to just live the Gospel,
be engaged in humanitarian efforts in our communities with others and forget
Advertising won't change minds "overnight," but it can open doors, and
that's one of the main purposes of it. It's why missionaries are so excited.Over time, as public figures who are Mormon make the news (in good ways,
though), advertising will help even more.The gist and feeling of an
ad has a lot to do with how it's perceived and accepted, as well. I'd expect
that to be effective, based on the few ads I've seen so far.
The quality of the Mormon Church has always maintained a high standard. I hope
in the attempt to defend our faith and the "Book of Mormon" we don't
loose focus on Jesus Christ the corner stone of our faith by commercializing
ourselves. Many will watching how we conduct ourselves. Let us not lower
our standards. Concerned
This is exactly what the Church should be doing in light of "The Book of
Mormon" musical and the attention it has drawn. Way to take the high road!
@ Joggle: Not sure about an atheists' ad campaign but the "I'm an
ex-Mormon" campaign is already in full swing. I was unaware of it until I
accidentally clicked on one while watching a video on youtube and realized I
wasn't listening to a real Mormon. There will always be opposition to everything
the Church promote, and former members will always be among some of it's most
bitter and vocal foes.
I just don't understand the need to advertise one's religion, unless there is
some ulterior motive, such has voting a Mormon into office, for example.
I wonder if the atheists will respond with an ad campaign!! That would be
Wow! I can actually agree with Chris B's comment for a change! Keep up the
good work fellow Mormon's! I am a Mormon and Proud of it!
Wonderful campaign. Now if we can just get Huntsman to say 'I am a Mormon'
instead of 'tough to define.'
I don't care too much what the Mormons do or dont do, but it does seem like
anything related to them gets the liberals bent out of shape - and to me thats
funny. So keep up the good work Mormons.