Dear friends, How incredibly thankful I am for my faith in Jesus
Christ, a faith which is strengthened daily by my study, by my prayer, and by my
service. I am a Mormon by choice and could not be happier.To those
who once hated the LDS Church because those of black lineage were not given the
Priesthood (and who now hate the same Church because a prophet of God repeatedly
petitioned God for their inclusion and was finally given that permission), to
those who hated the LDS Church for once providing and caring for multiple wives
(and who now hate the Church for a prophet of God repeatedly petitioning God for
a reprieve from this practice until it was granted and the practice was
relieved), to those who have no true interest in understanding but wish instead
to dish blame, ridicule, scorn and misunderstanding, I simply say we love you.
Don't let pride and vanity and your assumed learning rob you of true happiness.
Taste the fruit.True answers are on the internet. I use it daily.
But you have to know where to find them. Learn how to sift through internet
chaff. Great blessings await your success.
Clear up misconceptions? Family ties, community service, devotion to personal
beliefs: that describes every religion.What the public wants to
know is:How would an LDS president lead, if his leaders opposed his
position?With the factual history of the (3) major doctrinal reverses that
the SLC church has made, how likely is it that a President Romney would reverse
(i.e., flip-flop) on any given position?You will never satiate the
public's concern or curiosity on how Mormonism works until you answer honestly
that a living prophet means new revelations are possible on any day. Just give
them the Articles of Faith. They can read.This article clarified
nothing, obscured the one hang-up Americans have with a religion where a modern
prophet calls the shots. That's the game changer for Mitt and he won't
overcome it with his business acumen. If he'd follow in his gr.gr.grandparents'
steps of undeniable allegiance to his church, he'd win over many more. Give us
the candor of Orson and Parley P. any day over the suave, whitewashed flipping
PR manager. Thou dost forget that we still have libraries and Journals of
It matters not that the temple ceremony has changed, or that blacks have
received the priesthood, or that polygamy isn't practiced as it was before the
manifesto or that men can be sealed to more than one women in the temple.What statement do you think those statements make? Does it mean that
Joseph Smith didn't see God and Christ in the grove, that he didn't receive the
golden plates and through the power of God we have the Book of Mormon or that
John the Baptist didn't come to Oliver and Joseph and restore the Aaronic
Priesthood or that Peter, James and John returned the Melchizedek Priesthood or
that all the keys were restored in the temples?Do you think that it
means that millions haven't received a witness of the truth through the Holy
Ghost, exactly as Christ said, of the Book of Mormon, Joseph Smith and the
restored gospel?I don't know if any of you have any posts available
to respond but your grave concerns about things LDS have nothing to do with the
truth of the LDS church. The blind-faith whines are a non-starter
for me. It shows ignorance on your parts!
I'm not sure what the purpose of Thinkman, Brahmabull, Mormoncowboy and the like
is on these pages. If you don't believe in the teachings of the LDS church,
great. That's your choice. That's exactly why we are on this earth is to have
the ability to choose God or not. To learn about His truths and through those
truths return to His presence.If you don't believe in God, the LDS
church, Joseph Smith, Book of Mormon, religion, Satan, heaven, hell, or anything
else God-related that's up to you.What I don't understand is your
attempt to tell others that they don't know what their religion teaches and how
anyone who still believes in that religion doesn't use their brain.Or how because of doctrinal changes that somehow the LDS church isn't the
Lord's church or prophets are false.What doctrinal changes did
Christ bring when He came to the earth? How did the Jews feel about these
doctrinal changes?As I understand the principles of the gospel there
will be line upon line, precept upon precept; here a little, there a little.
Joggle Your claims of uninformed uneducated persons in third world
countries not having the ablity to make informed decisions would also have to
apply to them not having the ablity to make informed decision regarding all of
the anti-LDS people and anti-lds literature in the world as well. They do not
know the 100% truth(the professed reason is not guarenteed truth)of why a given
anti-LDS really wants to attack the LDS. They do not know the real honest truth
of why anti-lds people want to dedicate so much time to attacking the church and
its doctirines. They would not know of any hidden agendas by anti lds people and
gay activists for attacking the church as well. They also do not have the
resources to do the research to find out that many anti-lds claims and published
literature are often half truths at best and in many cases outright slanderous
lies. It works both ways.
When I said "I know all this..." -didn't mean to sound arrogant. God
loves and will help ANY/ALL of us understand truth, IF we reach out to Him.Thinkman, please don't get hung up with nit picking. I understand that
things should make sense, and the gospel does, but I think there will always be
something that can bother us. Human history, even concerning Christ's church, is
not going to fit into tidy little boxes that make perfect sense because we are
fallible, complicated beings with freedom and that messes things up quit a
bit.Can prophets make mistakes? Yes! They are human. But that
doesn't mean they aren't called to help lead us in following Christ. Of course
we are to use our mind/will to come to our own conclusions through studying
things out AND through prayer- because we don't always come to the correct
conclusions on our own, because we CAN'T possibly know ALL the facts.
Fortunately, God does. In this life, I don't think any of us, even
prophets, have all the answers to EVERYTHING. With some things we do need to use
Faith, but God will give us enough, if we seek it.
Clarkhippo - I know the LDS isn't affiliated with the other sects. The problem
is, president Hinckley said polygamy is NOT DOCTRINAL. He could have clarified
it if he wanted - he didn't. Furthermore, how do you think polygamy is different
in those sects than with the early mormons? With the early members there were
underage marriages, forceful polygamous relationships, everything that goes on
with them now. Many women were forced into it, and some were underage, which
isn't right. Snowman - Coffee, tobacco, and strong drinks were used
in the tabernacle when it was first constructed. Brigham said that they should
not be banned, but used with prudence. Hot chocolate and any soup taken hot was
also categorized under "hot drinks" just as Joseph revealed it. Beer
was used regularly, and many will justify this of course, and meat was advised
to be used in winter and famine. So yes the word of wisdom has changed, and
therefore, doctrine has changed. Justify, rationalize all you want about why,
but it did. Why not just obey it just as god revealed it to Joseph Smith??? Odd.
Joseph Smith drank beer (yes after the word of wisdom was given).
Anti-Mormon literature was distributed at the conference. Oh, and by the way,
Huckabee was one of the keynote speakers at a portion of that conference in Salt
Lake City in 1998.So tell me again, Brother Huckabee, how it is that
you didnt really know much about the Mormon church but you had heard some rumor
that maybe the Mormons thought Jesus and Satan were brothers and you thought you
would ask Zev Chafets for clarification on Mormon doctrine?As I
said, dishonest mischaracterization of the church, or deliberate fomenting of
anti-Mormon sentiment. Keep your eyes and ears open, well be subjected to a
bunch more of it.
Im from the south (Texas) where, like Utah, anti-Mormonism is a full-fledged
industry. I have attended meetings sponsored by Protestant and Biblical
Christian denominations (as they call themselves) where out-of-town guests were
brought in to bash the LDS Church. One such instructor I spoke with did this
for a living, working out of the Dallas / Fort Worth area and traveling
throughout the south with a slide show and anti-Mormon publications. The local
church (in my small town of less than 4000) that sponsored this particular guy
was affiliated with the same national church organization as Mike Huckabee.So Huckabee cannot claim with any sincerity that he is so unfamiliar
with the Mormon Church. His church, particularly the leadership, is STEEPED in
anti-Mormonism here in the south.And if thats not enough for you,
dont forget that back in 1998 the Southern Baptist Convention had decided to
hold its annual conference in Salt Lake City, into the belly of the beast as it
was described, where conference-goers were instructed on how to witness to
Someone mentioned Mike Huckabee earlier. As with many of the negative posters
on this and other sites, his actions in the 2008 Republican presidential primary
are a prime example of what the LDS Church, and otherwise sincere investigators
of the Church face in today's world. Dishonest mischaracterization of the
church, or deliberate fomenting of anti-Mormon sentiment.Recall
during the 2008 primary campaign the interview Huckabee had with Zev Chafets of
the New York Times Magazine. Huckabee was asked specifically about Romney's
religion. Huckabee feigned general ignorance, but then volunteered, "Don't
Mormons believe that Jesus and the devil are brothers?" The Jesus and
Satan/Brothers one-liner is well known and has LONG been a common dig aimed at
raising eyebrows among non-LDS Christians. When questioned later about the
comment, Huckabee tried to pretend he was just asking an honest question of the
interviewer, as if the Baptist minister and former head of the Arkansas Baptist
Convention would, in any sincerity, be asking a Times reporter for tips and
insights on Mormon belief.Continued below...
to Thinkman:How do you know that it wasn't in God's wisdom to wait
for African Americans to receive the Priesthood? That it has absolutely NOTHING
to do with racism and everything to do with wisdom?Maybe we members
of the church wouldn't have been ready to accept it, or citizens of our nation
might have heaped enough persecution on the early Saints to destroy the church
etc... WHO KNOWS. One can guess all day long, but my point is, God knows what He
is doing. No matter who you are,(even prophets), with some things in
life, we DO have to go on Faith. But God does give us enough to help us, IF we
seek him in humility. That means using BOTH our mind (reasoning out things,
seeking historical facts and information) AND our heart (praying, asking for
God's Spirit to enlighten us, trusting that He loves us).The
scriptures say that God is no respecter of persons, that the worth of souls is
great, that God is Love, and I know all this because I have felt this in such a
deep personal way.
Snowman,A man who has married a woman in the temple and if that
woman dies the man can marry and be sealed to another woman and therefore,
polygamy is alive and well in the LDS church if not in this life then in the
next.Coffee was never part of the Word of Wisdom and the Utah
Mormons, Brigham, John Taylor and my ancestors were coffee drinkers. The LDS
church came out in the late 1800s saying that coffee was not to be bought
anymore because of economic conditions and coffee was deemed a luxury.Temple ordinances have changed in my lifetime. I went in 1987. A major
change was made to the Endowment ordinances in 1990. Another major change was
made to the washings and annointings in 2005. I won't go into details as I
don't want to offend you or anyone of the LDS church. There were also other
major changes from the original ordinances that Joseph Smith introduced prior to
the 1990 changes. It isn't hard to find this stuff, or at least it wasn't in
the early 199s when I saw documents in the BYU library showing those changes.1978 wasn't very long ago. Sad
Thinkman: There is no polygamy in the temple. Coffee Was and is still part of
the Word of Wisdom ( section 89 D&C). Temple ordinances have not chamged.
None of the scriptures have changed. And Every worthy man has been able to have
the Priesthood since 1978.
@Brahmabull 2:49President Hinckley was talking about modern-day
polygamy. The kind practiced by Warren Jeffs, Tom Green and others. These groups
are not affiliated in any way with the LDS Church and never have been. And the
form of polygamy they practice is much, much different than anything practiced
by the early LDS Church.I do not want to put words in your mouth
Brahmabull, but I do know there are some critics of the LDS Church who believe
the practice of modern-day polygamy is being quietly sanctioned or endorsed by
the LDS Church. This is utter nonsense and no matter how much people like
President Hinckley try to explain this, many people refuse to believe it. If you
believe this, please provide your source.
@standfanBeing faithless is not at all lonely! You can't assume that
all people are the same and have a need for faith to be happy or fulfilled. My
understanding is that the stories in the Bible themselves cannot serve as
examples of eyewitness accounts since they came as products of the minds of the
unknown authors, and not from the characters themselves. The consensus of many
biblical historians put the dating of the earliest Gospel, that of Mark, at
sometime after 70 C.E., and the last Gospel, John after 90 C.E. This would make
it some 40 years after the alleged crucifixion of Jesus that we have any Gospel
writings that mention him!I'm not saying that many of the standards
in the Bible aren't relevent or true, but rather that religious belief is not
needed for them to be common sense and useful in society. Good or bad simply
comes from inside each of us. Lack of faith doesn't make you a bad person nor
does having faith always make you a good person. My foundation comes from within
myself. You might say it is based on new knowledge and is remodeled as that
Zack;I realized at the time I phrased the statement that way there would be
someone who would bring up what is done in the temple. I cannot speak for every
situation, but in my situation my relatives who have more than on wife sealed to
them were legally and lawfully married to said spouse--one woman at a time. I
believe there is a difference in worldly law and celestial laws and the plural
marriage done in the temple refers to the latter.
dlw7 wrote:"[Polygamy] is not the doctrine of the Church at this
time. If you practice it, you are excommunicated from the Church. End of
Story!!"I respectfully disagree, though it may appear my
disagreement is on a technicality. Plural marriage is still practiced, and it is
still the doctrine of the Church. Faithful Mormon widowers are often sealed to a
new wife without canceling the sealing to their deceased wife. The 1890
manifesto banning the plural marriage to multiple living women at one time did
nothing to retract the doctrine of plural marriage. The Church has never made
such a retraction.
Joggle @ It must be a lonley place to be faithless. Furthermore the lack thereof
does not change Truth. You see truth is truth. It never changes. Because you or
I may choose to belief or not belief really matters not to the truth. Many of
the authors to the Bible were eyewitness to what He said and did. There
testimony is not heresay. If you or I tell the story or choose to believe, then
it's heresay we believe in. Then the question arises what is truth? You choose
not to believe, or have faith. I choose to believe and have faith that it's
true. So I quess my question is by which scale do you judge others or life by?
Or to which scale or standard do you live by and hold others too? The Golden
rule? That's from the Bible you don't believe in? I'm not trying to knock you
down here, I am just really really curious. Because from the outside looking in
it sounds like a building without any foundation. And you probably think the
same of me. So what is your scale or standard?
It never ceases to amaze me how the comments get so far afield from the topic of
the article. However, Mormons used to practice polygamy. For a variety of
reasons it was ordered by the President of the Church after direct revelation to
cease this practice. So we don't anymore. It is not the doctrine of the Church
at this time. If you practice it, you are excommunicated from the Church. End of
Story!! When you believe in a religion you accept its teachings--all of
them--and you can't pick and choose which ones you will follow. Sometime people
become disenchanted and want to redo Mormonism to fit their thinking and we have
the issues that have been brought up on the previous comments. The Church is the
Church and a higher Authority than me and you makes the changes.
@standfanWith all due respect to YOUR beliefs....I do not believe
the same. It is impossible to use scripture toward me to argue an opinion.
People here seem to make many false assumptions that most people here are
religious. I've explored religions and belief thoroughly and have found religion
to be lacking in credibility/probability. I neither believe the Bible to be the
word or inspired word of God or that Jesus was a divine. In fact, my research
says no one has the slightest physical evidence to support a historical Jesus;
no artifacts, dwelling, works of carpentry, or self-written manuscripts. All
claims about Jesus derive from writings of other people. Hearsay does not work
as evidence because we have no way of knowing whether the person lied, or simply
based his or her information on wrongful belief or bias. The Gospels did not
come into the Bible as original and authoritative from the authors themselves.
Although the historical Jesus could've been a real person which myth made
divine....I believe the Bible was written by man to explain the world during a
time of ignorance and to control society. I would fight my own mind to
Clark hippo/humble Abeille - you have never heard president Hinckley say
polygamy is not doctrinal? You certainly haven't looked too hard into it then.
Here is the quote. Interview with Larry King. Aired September 8, 1998 "I
condemn it, yes, as a practice, because I think it is not doctrinal." There
it is. NOT DOCTRINAL. Yet, the early leaders of the church said it was
doctrinal."The only men who become Gods, even the Sons of God,
are those who enter into polygamy. Others attain unto a glory and may even be
permitted to come into the presence of the Father and the Son; but they cannot
reign as kings in glory, because they had blessings offered unto them, and they
refused to accept them."- The Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of
Discourses, Vol 11, p. 269So yes it was and still should be a
DOCTRINE whether it is practiced or not. That sounds like doctrine changing to
me. Let me guess - you will dismiss the statements above as OPINION because they
go against what your arguement is. If any quote suppored what you said you would
immediately quote it as if it were doctrine instead. Standard LDS procedure.
"takes on the notion that Mormons are all from Utah, and all
Caucasian....he writes that "the church's demographics are changing
rapidly, especially throughout the western hemisphere.""meaning more and more caucasians are leaving? =)
@Fred VadarThat's my opinion! Many people (not all) have limited
information resources, are uninformed about many things....are often illiterate
which often translates into uneducated, but it doesn't translate into them being
stupid. I never said anything about race or not being smart enough. If you'd
like to present a reasonable argument, please feel free to do so....instead of
insinuating things I never said or meant. In other words....please refrain from
trying to attribute statements to me that I never said. Can you prove my opinion
to be untrue? It's perfectly logical to say that people in poor, uneducated,
illiterate third world countries don't have the information resources to make a
truly informed decision concerning a religion. The same thing could be said
about any atheist prothylizer doing the same thing.....as well as Catholic
missionairies (etc). I'm sorry, but I think it's more important to help these
third world people out of poverty through education and aid than to convert them
into a religion that seems to give them minimum facts. Sure the LDS Church helps
in other ways, but they could do so much more in that direction with their
wealth. Do you disagree?
Joggle my friend. First off you say the LDS church takes advantage of third
world countries. Then you say you have a problem with organized Religion. So in
reality you disagree with Christ. In Ephesians 4:11-14 it was Christ himself
that organized His Church. If He was perfect, then His Church He organized must
also be or He would cease to be pefect. We as people are not perfect, but His
organazation is. And you must not have ever read Matthew 28:19-20. Again the
Savior said "Go ye therefore and teach ALL nations,baptising them etc.
" So we believe in and follow Christ and we are condemed for doing it. Got
it. News flash the whole world isn't rich. But it still doesn't change the Lords
decree to go teach and baptize them. Apperently He loves them all. And so do we.
And we surely must have taken advantage of them when we sent 100's of tons of
food and clothing to those countries that were devistated with natural desaters,
and asked nothing in return. So excuse us if we don't agree with you. We care
more about what Christ did, and told us to do.
@LDS Revelations:I find it interesting that you apparently didn't
read the posts I was referring to, or don't you find the following Eurocentric
and racist?LValfre: "Today, the biggest conversions are
overseas in area's with limited resources and education" [i.e. not smart
enough to know better]; "So of course the church is growing...in areas
where the people are desperate and poor" [i.e. poor people aren't smart
enough to know better]; "Its dwindling amongst whites and the educated
[i.e. non-whites aren't smart enough to know better]Joggle:
"The LDS Church takes advantage of poorer third world countries where
information, education, and literacy are limited" [i.e. non-white,
illiterate and not smart enough to know better]Yeah, that was total
spin by me. Not.
Yeah, like everyone knows all that is found on the internet is truth! Wake up!
Just because more is available--so accessible--does NOT guarantee it's true!
This is especially true when someone has an anti agenda as we are seeing in this
thread. Perhaps we're gaining in 3rd world countries because they are
teachable. Not to say that all who are wealthy and educated aren't, but history
has proven over and over what can happen--when we don't focus on the spiritual
things. Makes me think of the great and spacious building...
ClarkHippo said - "If you read 1st Nephi in the Book of Mormon when Lehi
explains his dream of the Tree of Life, you next read how Nephi prayed to learn
for himself the meaning of the dream. Each of us can do this for ourselves if
there is a doctrine or teaching we don't understand or need help with in our own
lives." I agree with you ClarkHippo. It is interesting that for
me I really feel (for a while now) the promptings I have received as I have
prayed and pondered upon the Church has been - "Let go of all this stuff.
Forget what you do or don't BELIEVE about Mormonism and focus on the Savior and
on serving and loving others." It is interesting that people
who ask God about the Mormon Church do not always receive the same answer. But I
think each will be blessed if they follow the promptings they do receive.My promptings have NOT been the stereotypical pray, pay and obey and it
will all work out. It has been focus on your family and those you can serve and
love. I guess it is time I do that!
@Utter Nonsense 10:55Your point is a valid one, although I think
most of the misunderstanding of LDS doctrine within church membership are ones
which come from oral histories that have gone down the generational pipelines
rather than the standard set doctrines we read in the standard works.A good example of this is the "White Horse Prophesy" which I have
heard in so many different versions I've lost count. This is when personal
revelation comes into play. If you read 1st Nephi in the Book of
Mormon when Lehi explains his dream of the Tree of Life, you next read how Nephi
prayed to learn for himself the meaning of the dream. Each of us can do this for
ourselves if there is a doctrine or teaching we don't understand or need help
with in our own lives. James 1:5 isn't just simply about praying to
know that the gospel is true, it also means we can ask God about anything we are
@Brahmabull 10:35You said - "All the mormons who claims the
"anti's" are spreading lies and twisting I find that ironic because
the apologists do that too."Then you said - "The hang up
on the polygamy thing, for me, is this: modern mormons are so wish washy with it
- it is almost like they don't even believe in the principle anymore. They claim
it was never a doctrine."Who said Polygamy was never a
doctrine? I've never heard President Hinckley or anyone else make this claim.
The church has suspended the practice, but that doesn't mean it wasn't
doctrine.How can you accuse LDS apologists of twisting their
arguments when you're doing the exact same thing? @Thinkman 11:38You said - ' "As God is man once was..." couplet that Hinckley
said "we no longer teach that." 'Your other points are
valid ones which can be discussed, but this one is a total fabrication. What
President Hinckley did say was, "I don't know that we teach it. I don't
know that we emphasize it."Major, major difference. Hinckley
was explaining this is a doctrine which we don't know the full details of yet.
I remember on my mission having to defend the LDS church and why it practiced
polygamy openly and still in temple marriages.Also, I had to defend
why the LDS church took until the late 1970s to give non-whites the priesthood.
I always questioned that particular doctrine myself and was told by bishops,
stake pres and my mission pres that I need to just accept that I don't
understand God's ways. Quite frankly, it was a racist policy to be sure and
that is why the LDS church is considered to be a white-only or white-mostly
religion. Sad. I don't see the LDS church as racist. Surely, most members and
its leadership are not and there possibly are some if only very few, just like
many religions have some people who may be racist.
To all those who think I have an axe to grind concerning the LDS Church:Rather than making false personal accusations toward an opposing or
disagreeing opinion please present your argument without them. I don't have an
axe to grind with the LDS Church nor do I have an anti-LDS agenda. I simply
disagree with organized religion as a WHOLE. I did NOT say ALL LDS are
illiterate, disadvantaged people, but the fact is there are many in third world
countries who are. When you can prove that missionairies only go to wealthy,
educated and literate households than I will be happy to present my supportive
facts as well. The LDS Church has done nothing to me personally! There are GOOD
aspects to the Church, but I personally recognize the less than stellar aspects
as well whether some want to recognize them or not. While I don't
expect LDS to agree with me in a forum such as this....I do think it is
unnecessary to make PERSONAL attacks. Dispute the argument instead of attacking
the messenger. I'm not attacking people personally. I'm only disagreeing with
aspects of the LDS religion and I'm presenting my opinion.Thank you!
Utter Nonsense:Once again, you present an argument from an
over-generalization. You claim that millions of members worldwide are not smart
enough to understand their own religion. I assume that if they were smart and
enlightened and reasonable like you and 3/4 of your family that the membership
in general would also leave the Church? That argument is based solely on
selective observation. You offer nothing substantive to tie these two together.
No credibility!You claim to have left the Church. Yet, here you
are - unable to leave the Church alone. I feel it's going to be hard for you to
ever find peace with your decision under such circumstances - but more power to
you. You exercised your freedom of choice to sort of leave, why do you
criticize that same right for others to worship God to the dictates of their own
Why does it seem there is a pervasive attitude among the LDS of "Look at
us! Look at us! Aren't we wonderful!"?It is almost
religious exhibitionism, and it is really unattractive.
Brahmabull -If you believe the Holy Bible, you MUST agree with the
fact that God, in the very least, permitted polygamy. Abraham, Isaac, Jacob,
etc. ALL had more than one wife. Does that mean polygamy is 'Doctrine'? Not
necessarily.If you believe the Book of Mormon is scripture, you MUST
agree with the fact that, at times, God prohibits polygamy (Jacob 2:27). Does
that mean that monogamy is 'Doctrine'? Nope.Doctrine never changes.
Even though some early Church members expressed opinions on polygamy being
Doctrinal, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints NEVER accepted
polygamy as 'Doctrine.' Many early writings point that out - including the
Journals of my 3G-Grandfather (and he was a polygamist). So, what do
I believe about polygamy? I believe that, at times, God requires it of certain
individuals. I also believe that, at times, it is sinful to engage in (which is
the case today). Requirements of the moment should not be confused with Doctrine
- one changes with the situation, the other does not.Just thoughts
of someone who 'is clearly not in a sound mind.' (How I love my admirers)
"Most of the misunderstandings are held by the Mormon church members
themselves. They don't really have an idea what their real church history or
changing doctrines are about. "And even more sadly, they're not
willing to read or look into it. The church says to avoid any non 'LDS
approved' literature. "When the brethren have spoken, the
thinking is done."
@ Fred VaderI find it interesting that the only person calling LDS
converts in the 3rd world 'dumb' is you. The point made by others was many of
these people don't have access to information and are only getting the Church's
view of Mormonism. Clearly the advent of the Internet has a profoundly changed
the how the LDS Church is viewed in the 1st world and I think likely has had a
negatively impacted conversion there. The comments were merely suggesting that
the lack of this information source is part of why conversion rates in the less
developed world are still high.I think you're spin on this point is
a little misleading. It certainly is easier though to paint a comment as bigoted
than actually addressing it's contents
About me: Served an LDS mission, married in the temple, taught gospel doctrine
for 5 years, served in multiple leadership positions, 5th generation Mormon.The LDS church has done much good. However, it also has led to much
division of families as hard core LDS members attack and disown their own family
members who stray from the church especially for doctrinal issues. That has
happened to me and over 20 of my close friends over the past few years. Those
friends and myself came to the realization that the LDS church conveniently
forgets or hides its past. There are many reasons why the LDS church is
misunderstood and it has mostly itself to blame with its ever-changing
doctrines:-polygamy illegal, but not in temple marriages-"As God is man once was..." couplet that Hinckley said "we no
longer teach that"-coffee being a staple of the early Utah Mormons to
now being an evil drink-changing temple ordinances that have happened
multiple times in my own lifetime -Book of Mormon text changes -Book
of Abraham being taken from funeral texts.-Adam is God Doctrine-Only
whites get priesthoodI could go on but I have only 200 words.
Lots of cultures have sacred rituals. Sacred for me means that someone has to
make a special effort to get the knowledge. That doesn't apply just to Mormom
Lvavre and Joggle I don't get it??? I see no place in the scriptures that say's
or suggests one is omitted from keeping God's commandment for paying tithing if
he is poor. Please provide the refereance if you have it. I do recall the
Saviors story of the Widow's mite. It's not about Money. It's about faith in
following His word. Like father Abraham and Jacob. It was His way of testing
Abraham. Who do you think you are to even suggest someone disobey God's
commandments? In Malachi the Lord promises to open the windows of heaven to
those that obey. It say's nothing of omitting the command if you happen to be
poor. And you wonder why we have so many different Religions in the world? It
reminds me of the pharmacist who had a percspition that called for enough
medicine to cover the face of a dime. He didn't have a dime so he used two
nickles. Most of the problems begin when people try to make un-authorized
substitutions to the Lords formula. I'm quite sure you have no authority to
change God's commandments. In fact I'm positive. And I'm sure the poor wanted
the promised blessings.
Anybody who comes on here and boasts about their degrees and their income is
clearly not in a sound mind. All the mormons who claims the "anti's"
are spreading lies and twisting I find that ironic because the apologists do
that too. Every time the church edits a part of their own history, and take it
out of books hoping nobody will notice they are doing the exact same thing. The
hang up on the polygamy thing, for me, is this: modern mormons are so wish washy
with it - it is almost like they don't even believe in the principle anymore.
They claim it was never a doctrine. Well any who think that haven't done their
studies - at all. It is not hard to find quotes of early bretheren saying it was
doctrine. So we come to a quote by President Hinckley (who I loved as a servant
of god) and he says that polygamy is "not doctrinal." Hmmmmmmmm.....
either it is doctrinal or it isn't. He could have just said we believe in the
doctrine but don't practice it right now. But he made it clear we don't believe
in it anymore. That is a problem.
Dnews monitor board..Just a quick note, Enough with the double
standards, there was nothing wrong with my last comments. If your going to let
people slam and stir up issue regarding the church then what I said about Joggle
and The other anti small minded people does not need to be denied. What a joke.
FDRfan wrote,"Night TraderThanks for speaking up. We need a
zillion more, at least, like you."Amen to that!
Indeed this is a sign of the times when good things are made to be evil, and
evil made out to be good (see Isaiah 5:20) The Bible is replete with verses
similar to the aforementioned one. Having served a mission in St. Louis, MO,
considered to be a "bible-belt" mission, this anti-Mormon spew is the
same yesterday, today and forever. Can't the haters come up with any new
materiel? -Polygamy-defeated-Whites Only-defeated-Women being
inferior-defeatedI guess there must really have to be opposition in
@CougarBlueI agree, my understanding is that the saving ordinances
of the temple are done by women for women under the direction of the Priesthood.
I don't know why women don't have to be ordainded to do temple work and men do.
Seems that women are priveledged not second class.Women have been
giving discourses and prayers in LDS congregations a century longer than other
established religions.Women are "Set Apart" by laying on
of hands to perform callings under the direction of the Priesthood with
authority.The Priesthood in the LDS church is not male and rests
equally on both female and male members. Regardless, on this earth, only males
"hold" the priesthood.
no fit in SG: Yes the polygamy thing will be there forever because it is part
of the churchs history.
Night TraderThanks for speaking up. We need a zillion more, at least, like
I am LDS and a 29-year-old bachelor who finds polygamy reprehensible. Let me
find one wife first. It bears mentioning not all Church members lived polygamy
even when it was in place. Of course, playing devil's advocate is so easy. Most
people that play that role don't believe in a religion strong enough themselves
to fight for it so sorry about that. At least on my mission in Tucson and El
Paso, evangelicals told me what they want to believe. In Utah, generally people
only want to bash.
Incite Full wrote:If [those who point the finger of scorn at the LDS
Church] had a better alternative they'd share it without the need to tear down
othersI think there is some truth to this. In that spirit, I offer
another way. The Book of Mormon promise (Moroni 10:3-5) is not a reliable way to
ascertain truth. Speaking of the principle in general, Steven Hassan wrote, A
common technique among religious cults is to instruct people to ask God what He
wants them to do. Members are exhorted to study and pray in order to know Gods
will for them (Combatting Cult Mind Control, p. 70). I offer reason as an
alternative. As Galileo said, I do not feel obliged to believe that
the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended
us to forgo their use. I suggest sense, reason, and intellect are gifts of God
that we are to use instead of relying on a method that provides contradictory
results among the children of men.
It is unsettling to have people comment about what I believe without me in the
conversation. As soon as someone in or out of the LDS faith says, "Mormons
believe..." they better be quoting the Articles of Faith. Everything else
is just their own personal interpretation.Aaron Sherinan's article
is uplifting to me because he only tells what he believes as a Mormon and had
faithful perspective. Michael Otterson didn't get into theology and had
interseting journalistic facts about the demographics of Mormonism.On the other hand, Johanna Brooks perceptions and interpretations of what
Mormons believe made me cringe. I have an arguement for nearly every one of her
points as to waht I believe personally as a Mormon. She should only be speaking
for herself with terms, "I believe..." "My understanding in what
I have read..." etc. In fact we should all be so careful.
ClarkHippo wrote:'can't help but laugh whenever someone makes a comment
like, "The LDS Church is losing members because of the Internet." People who say things like this must think everything on the Internet is
100% truthful.'I don't think anybody is saying the info on the
Internet is 100% accurate. To be sure, there is a lot of contradictory info out
there. However, information (both accurate and inaccurate) about the LDS Church
is much more accessible now than it was in the 1980s largely because of the
Internet. For example, I stumbled upon the problems the Church faces regarding
its claims about the Book of Abraham on the Internet quite by accident. I think
it's much more unlikely that I would have discovered this without the Internet.
@LValfre and Joggle. I'd like to know where you get your information!I am currently serving a humanitarian service mission in the jungles of a tiny
island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. I've been here almost two years. This
mission has cost me nearly $100,000. I haven't converted anyone to Mormonism. I
am here to serve.This is a society who's citizens feel only a sense
of hopelessness. Education, nutrition, labor laws, and human rights are nearly
non-existent. Most men live to drink. We spend a good portion of our time trying
to save young wives who are consistently beaten by drunk husbands.The church spends $millions here, annually. I get to help the local branch
president prepare the bank deposits from tithing and donations. Lets put it this
way. The cost of gas to drive to the bank is a greater sum than the deposit.
Believe me, the church is not doing this to get rich, or rob the poor. My wife
and I are on the front lines.. and have been twice in our lives... what have you
Just red Brooks article. Her statement in myth 4 shows she still has a long way
to go to understand the temple ceremony and what she states as "unequal
No need to worry about Harry Reid being influenced by Salt Lake. When the First
Presidency sent out a rare call to action for members to call their senator in
favor of the Defense of Marriage Bill, Harry Reid not only didn't stand in favor
of it, he stood on the Senate floor and rebuked it.
Fools mock, but they shall mourn. We all walk within the light we have. It is
only natural that those who point the finger of scorn at the LDS church do so to
justify their own lack of direction and purpose. If they had a better
alternative they'd share it without the need to tear down others who are making
a better life. Keep the faith, my fellow saints. It's a rough ride, but the
destination is worth all the bumps and bruises, and even the occasional mistaken
byroad. The world's fixated on cynicism, criticism, selfish
selfindulgence, addictive entertainment at all costs, and intellectual nihilism.
All are killers to the human soul, creating knee-jerk monsters out of beings
that once had both the capacity to think and feel, but now are left with
What none of these comments address here, is why Mormons have to explain,
redefine and defend their religion 181 years after its founding. When I was
growing up in southern Cal in the 1960's, we knew exactly what and why we
believed our 'wacky' doctrines. We proudly admitted our new revelations aka
flip-flops and didn't equivocate on quoting our prophets' dislike for other
religions, their false authority or sole reliability on the Bible. That was the
Mormonism of Mitt, too, before his make-over.We didn't whitewash our
past polygamy or Joseph and Brigham's wives. It was God's test and command, end
of subject. We didn't like the black priesthood prohibition, but we knew we
weren't prejudiced. We gave away Books of Mormon at doorsteps and put their
diorammas at Visitor's Center's entrances, not in their basements. We told
investigators that we didn't trust the Bible as accurate, rather than offering
them in info-mercials as is the new twist for the past ten+ years. We weren't
taught a lot about the Mountain Meadows massacre, so we just ignored it. But we
didn't care about any masonic oaths and it was too late once we knew anyway..
I can't help but laugh whenever someone makes a comment like, "The LDS
Church is losing members because of the Internet." People who
say things like this must think everything on the Internet is 100% truthful.If that were the case, that must mean the Holocaust never happened, the
CIA killed John F. Kennedy (or maybe it was the Mafia, the Cuban government or
Lyndon Johnson, depending on which site you read) 9/11 was orchestrated by the
Israeli government and President Obama is really a member of the Taliban.Those things must all be true because I read them on the Internet.
I am 7th generation Mormon, Wiley Handcart Co., DUP (Daughters of the Utah
Pioneers), born & raised 35 yrs in church, temple-married, BYU-educated,
held every presidency position, taught in all auxillaries, blah-blah. I am
proud of my Mormon heritage, my 2 gr.granddads who did their prison-time rather
than ababdon their plural families. I love my large LDS family, my prestigeous
relatives and professors. My family are teachers, professors, doctors &
lawyers, one Wyoming politician, 85% returned-missionaries, farmers, parents,
and hard-working people.Does that give us a corner on the market of
truth? Cause we have our divorces, inactives, and ex-Mormons, too. I can give
you the same profile for Catholic and Muslim friends, too. What does Truth have
to do with strong, civil-minded, religious groups? The Taliban have an ethical
code of life, a prophet, an angel-inspired revelation and polygamy in both
lives. But their prophets have never changed their revelations and flipped on
their core beliefs. They still don't allow apostacy, just as the SLC leaders do
not.After God answered my prayer 25 years ago, my loving family
abandoned me for becoming Born-again. Truth is better by far.
And please don't forget that EVERYTHING on the internet is true.
I just love how many of the people commenting on these articles know more about
the religion I've been fully participating in for 45 years than I do. Not just
the ones on here, I mean the comment boards on these other websites. They
twist, misrepresent, and outright lie about what I believe. And denigrate me
for being stupid, dumb, brow-beaten, brainwashed, etc. After all, they're
getting their information largely from people who have made a living trying to
tear down the Church - hey, no conflict of interest there! They obviously must
have my best interest at heart... um, yeah. Fact is, active adult
members of the Church have had people telling them all their lives this same
kind of tripe. You aren't telling us anything new, that we haven't heard
before. We hear you - we just come away with different conclusions than you do.
Because we're willing to listen to both sides, both yours and the Church's
side, to reason it out, to pray about it, and make an informed decision.
I think that is people still do not understand the "Mormons" then they
do not want to understand them. We are the 4th largest church in the US and a
major religion in the world. With the internet and all the other opportunities
to understand us, if we are misunderstood then those that say they do not
understand us choose to do so. Take for examply Mike Huckabee. Last year he put
out little tidbits at a time saying as he used little barbs that he really did
not know who the mormons were. Really? What did he do during his theology
classes that he should have taken for the ministry, sleep? Some people do not
want to think anything other than what they want to. They are afraid to learn
the truth about something like it may hurt them. If others like their religions,
great. Don't dis on ours. We dont dis on yours.
I've always been curious about the anti-LDSers. (is that a word? lol) They are
always trying to tear down what I believe, but they never give me reason to
believe something else. If someone were to tell me (like a grown-up, not a 4
year old) what they believe and what makes them so happy in their beliefs, I
would take them a lot more seriously.
It's dwindling amongst whites and the educated. Pride cycle?
I really appreciated the comments in this article by Aaron Sherinian. I loved
"faith is something you do as much as you feel or think."I
struggle tremendously with certain LDS beliefs and history. And the more I read,
pray, and ponder the more it seems I struggle. Throughout it all it seems I keep
hearing God tell me to stop worrying about what I BELIEVE and start worrying
about what I am DOING. This article reinforced that for me.If I (if
all of us) would take the same amount of time we spend worrying about what we
BELIEVE and go out and instead DO things for those in need we would make a huge
difference in the lives of others and ourselves. I mean, what do we
really think we are going to be asked about after this life? (I know Joggle,
maybe nothing ;)) Is it more likely, "how did you exercise your faith by
loving and servine others?" OR "so, how did you finally come down on
that whole polygamy thingy?" Yeah, I think it is time I start forgetting
this nonsense about what I BELIEVE and start DOING!
no fit in SG:The Quoran makes it clear that a man can have up to
four wives providing he can adequately care and provide for them, and there are
known polygamist Muslim groups here in the US as well. I doubt that
HBO will be developing a Muslim based Polygamist series any time soon-not
because of the lack of interest but out of a lack of courage and not wanting to
offend the PC police. Curiously, I have noticed that very few if any
of those who routinely crtisize and condemn the LDS for practiging poligamy,
ever mention let alone condemn the teachings in the Quoran regarding plural
marriage and the fact that Muslims accross the world practice polygamy. The fact that this crowd of LDS naysayers fail to critisize and to
condemn the Muslim practice of polygamy and the Muslim scriptures reveals that
in many cases their objection to the LDS church is really not polygamy.
Polygamy is just the topic they choose to fixate upon. The real issue/gripe is
as captain ahab once said-a little lower layer.
@ Joggle: Contrary to your comments, opposing information is extremely
strong in poor countries. Other churches are very strong there. Higher
education is NOT what impedes the spread of the church amongst the educated. It
is the pride that inevitably impedes their teachability as assume they have
nothing else to learn.@ Lvalfre: The church does exactly what
you said it should be doing. Paying tithing is a personal choice.@
no fit in SG: Your judgmental attitude towards all LDS people says more
about you than any of them. You are likely of the same royal lineage as them,
and no one is claiming your intelligence to be inferior to theirs. Contrary to
your claims, most LDS people are very willing to discuss any scripture with you,
assuming you are sincere and teachable. Church members likewise are more than
happy to discuss any aspect of the temple that could possibly be relevant to
you. But if your only goal is to mock and denigrate temple activities, they
respectfully decline and request that you live so as to obtain a recommend and
find out for yourself what goes on.
No fit -The covenants I make in the temple are both sacred and
secret. I don't discuss them with anyone - even with other endowed members of
the Church. The covenants I make with God are between he and me alone. If you
really want to know them, I have a suggestion: study the gospel, join the
Church, be faithful in obeying all the commandments of God, then go to the
Temple and find out for yourself. This path is open to all - including you. Now,
how evasive is that?As far as what's in the scriptures: I'd be happy
to discuss any of them with you, in detail, if it were possible to discuss them
with the intent of listening and learning from each other. I've studied them for
many decades. However, that's not your intent. Your intent is to tear down, not
build up. Therefore, discussing these subjects with you would be useless, as you
wouldn't want to hear what I was saying anyway.And as far as Warren
Jeffs goes - I guess you know what he said better than I do. Personally, I don't
listen to the man.
I find it interesting that the supposedly Internet and morally enlightened
LValfre and Joggle/Jiggle use Eurocentric racist comments to try and attack the
Church and it's growing membership. Or don't you think that calling new members
of the church "dumb, third-world, illiterates" is Eurocentric or
Why is it that you always change the subject and refuse to discuss what is in
your scriptures and what takes place in your temples? Oh, yes, that is
sacred, not secret.Isn't that what Warren Jeffs said?
"the fact that it is a faith of action that encourages people to take their
faith in relation to Jesus Christ and put it into practice every day, not just
on Sunday, and not just when they're on their knees praying, but in how they
approach their communities and workplace and how they can make relationships
better."I think this is a fair point to make about LDS people.
You could also say this about many other religions/organizations. Personally I
think religion is a contrivance of man. So I can take the middle man (God) out
of the equation and try to be kind to others the best I can. The benefit is you
don't have to deal with the fear, guilt, and shame of not meeting a standard set
by some man made God. You are accoutable to yourself.
Loving this tennis match. Abeille is ahead!!
LOL! Looks like I can't win. Being a member of the LDS Church means I'm
obviously an idiotic, bumbling, uneducated, destitute fool to LValfre and
Joggle, but I'm some type of 'super duper, highly intelligent, superbly
educated, fantastically employed, royal, not-very-humble LDS Mormon lifer' to no
fit in SG. I'm either a fool or I lack humility. Oh well.The one
thing I DO agree with, no fit, is I'm an 'LDS Mormon lifer.' You can mark it
down and don't forget it. You (and LValfe and Joggle, too) might not like my
beliefs. You have that right. But I have every bit as much right to believe as I
choose, and I have every right to point out fallacies in your posts.As far as polygamy is concerned - get over it! It's been banned by the LDS
Church for 121 years and results in excommunication for any member trying to
live it. Funny, though. When consenting adults decide to live together and men
father children through multiple women, well, that's your right, isn't it? When
Men tie themselves legally to more than one woman (Polygamy), well, that's
outrageous! Seems hypocritical to me.
This article brings out the anti-LDS. I don't think that my wife would agree
with the statements regarding women in the Church as exposed by Johanna Brooks.
It is apparent that Joggle and LValfre have a anti-LDS bias. All more the need
to attempt to correct mis-information.
For you super duper highly intelligent, superbly educated, fantastically
employed, Royal(you all seem to like to add this "royal lineage" thing
when you describe yourselves), not very humble LDS Mormon lifers:You may
want to vote for making some "adjustments" during your church
meetings. Your scriptures(re: Doctrine and Covenants), will keep this polygamy,
etc. topic in the public eye forever. You all will have to keep fighting this
same battle over and over and over again.Hey, good luck on that.
And I bet you were born into LDS too ... or were you converted later in life?
To: LValfre 11:50 a.m., said, "Here's a mission, instead of converting
these people, try building them homes and teaching them sustainable ways to
farm, fish, or attain food. That's what they really need ... education. Not
misinformation."You must be unfamiliar with the LDS Church
Welfare Program and the Perpetual Education Fund. Even intelligent people WITH
internet service don't always know where to find the truth.Now you
LValvre and Joggle certainly seem to have an axe to grind. I can tell you from
first hand experience that being faithful and living Christ's teachings,
including paying an honest tithe, is more likely to build character, promote
happiness and help bring someone out of poverty, than any other single thing one
can do.As for the issue of "information availability" in
developed countries being a hinderance to missionary work, I agree - to a point.
I would, however, characterize much of the "information" as
"mis-information" or as red-herrings to the gospel message. Most of
the mis-information and/or red-herrings are either wrong, taken out of context,
irrelevant, or deal with personal failures of imperfect people, and are
certainly not valid refutations of the restoration message. I have gone through
dozens of these topics with many troubled people and found that most of the time
the issue is not the topic at hand, as once resolved, there is ALWAYS another
topic of concern. In most cases, there is generally a deeper seeded issue of
faith, confusion or a wounded spirit driving the angst, and the topics at hand
are simply proximate scape-goats.
Thanks, Northern Lights. You said it in a much more kind way than I would have.
To think that those who are educated know better than to believe in the gospel
as taught by the LDS Church is sheer lunacy. And I like your challenge to them,
which bears repeating: LValvre, Joggle - post empirical facts to back up your
statements. If you can't do it, feel free to read the Pew Forum's research on
the subject. You'll find that the LDS faithful are generally more knowledgeable
and more wealthy than the average - even here in America. You'll also find that,
unlike most religions, the more education LDS faithful receive, the MORE active
they are in church. I might not be the best example, as I only have two degrees
(one in Accounting and one in Computer Programming), graduated Summa Cum Laude
('With Highest Honors', for those who don't know what it means) with a 3.94 GPA,
and make a 6-digit income (well, we are in a recession, after all). And neither
my education nor my ability to make a good wage has one thing to do with my
belief in the gospel. God loves ALL his children.
So, LValfre and Joggle, you are arguing that the LDS Church is comprised only of
illiterate, disadvantaged people? I know many who would take exception to such
a generalization - present company included. I caution against
over-generalizing your argument, expecially without any empirical facts to back
it up. The mission of the Church is to help ALL come to Christ
regardless of race, nationality, or economic standing. For those blessed with
greater education and wealth, the Bible does warn against trying to serve both
God and mammon (riches). Somehow, your argument seems to support that
particular religious principle. Don't know if you intended to do that, however.
@JoggleTo make matters worse, these are the people who need the most
help and money. These aren't the people who should be tithing 10% of their
miniscule incomes. Here's a mission, instead of converting these people, try
building them homes and teaching them sustainable ways to farm, fish, or attain
food. That's what they really need ... education. Not misinformation.
Joggle - it appears you have too much of an anti-LDS agenda or bias for your
comments to be taken seriously. Perhaps you might consider not just the
increased membership of the LDS faith in "poorer third world
countries," but also the tremendous good the church is doing in providing
food, water, clothing, preventive and proactive medical care - and hope; we work
hard to bring hope for a better life - to millions of people living in those
countries.What have you done lately to lift someone's burden, other
Behind those statistics and demographics, Otterson notes, "are real people
of incredible cultural and ethnic diversity."You betcha! The
LDS Church takes advantage of poorer third world countries where information,
education, and literacy are limited. These countries are prime targets for
gaining members. Opposing information is less likely to be available. The U.S.
is a much less ripe country for pursuasion into the religion because there is so
much opposing information available.
The church has suffered more and more loss of interest and belief since the
internet took hold and much of the church history, alterations, lies, and truths
came out. Today, the biggest conversions are overseas in area's with limited
resources and education. These people don't have internet to learn more about
the church. They only get the 'milk' but never the 'meat'. So of course the
church is growing ... in areas where the people are desperate, poor, and looking
for some kind of answer. It's dwindling amongst whites and the educated.
Thanks for the article. It's interesting how, in our age understanding (often
shallow), Mormonism is still so misunderstood. Perhaps this is, in part, due to
those who intentionally foster misunderstanding (some will probably be here
shortly). We are more diverse and closer to ancient Christianity than other
Churches I've attended, and are truly re-established Christianity.
"Fifteen Mormons now serve in Congress, including Senate Majority Leader
Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and few seemed to worry that the LDS Church was influencing
his debt-ceiling proposals."Very strong implication the the LDS
Church does not approve of Harry Reid. I do not believe that. The perception
that the Church is strongly right wing Republican is really saying the Church is
lying about its neutrality.