Comments about ‘Hal Boyd: Mormon gospel not money gospel: A reply to new essay on Mormonism from Harper's Magazine’

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Published: Monday, Sept. 26 2011 6:00 p.m. MDT

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Woods Cross, UT

Well, to whom do I give this months love gift? Oh, wait, already did. Nevermind.

Layton, UT

Some of my neighbors in Ohio still believe Mormons have horns. Strange, must be no Mormons around here (I am in Ogden, UT right now) and our landlord must be lying about being a Mormon since I have seen no horns (other than on cars, bikes or noisemaker types) since I have been coming here.

Provo, UT

You can tell by the cover art that the Magazine really knows it's subject-not!

American Fork, UT

It costs a lot to have the horsepower on hand to create a rebuttal to every negative press article.

Salt Lake City, UT


Yeah it does cost a lot of money to "have the horsepower on hand to create a rebuttal to every negative press article"--so thank goodness for the FOR-Profit side of the Church like Deseret News. Which, by the way, you just helped support by reading the article and clicking though its five pages.

Murray, UT

Whether you're Mormon or Catholic it's the person, not the religious institution the wants to accumulate wealth. We as people put money ahead of the welfare of others or our own salvation. I worked for a millionaire in California that was a devout Baptist, the guy didn't donate a penny to his church, said, " they have enough money". I also worked for a part owner of a engineering firm, he'd come into my office each month a day early asking for his distribution check, although a mormon the guy spent every penny he earned it seemed.

Regardless of religion, faith or agnosticism, it's just common sense to be debt-free. I'm 55 and I just paid off my house and I have such a feeling of relief.


There is no freedom like owing nothing to a creditor.

Ogden, UT

A fine response, Mr. Boyd.

Mr. Lehmann is indeed off if he thinks LDS scripture encourages personal acquisition of wealth as a virtue. I don't think I can count the number of times the Book of Mormon instructs its followers to give freely to the poor and to not become obnoxious about wealth.

Which is all the more baffling to me that so many LDS members seem to admire material wealth & those who have it, and place the wants of the rich over the needs of the poor. I've read LDS scriptures cover to cover. The Tea Party plank of self reliance is in there, but the rotten board of money worship and social Darwinism sure isn't.

South Jordan, UT

Its hard to help others, if you can't get your own financial house in order.

Sandy, UT

This article, and others like it, is benefiting by the debate over it. It is not worth taking the time to publish an editorial about an editorial that only a VERY small fraction of the population will ever see. The online version is not even available to the general public without a subscription to the magazine. Why give them free publicity?


The current state of the press wouldn't be in such a mess if every reporter, in this country and elsewhere, took the time to just do a little research before they publish their articles. Thank you Mr. Boyd.


You did a fine job clarifying the inconsistencies of magazines's article, I appreciate that.

Salt Lake City, UT

Well, in light of this discussion I would like some simple yes or no answers. Does the Church disapprove of social security? Does the Church disapprove of medicare? Does the Church disapprove of so-called Obamacare? Does the Church believe in any kind of governmental safety net. May a socialist be a member in good standing in the LDS Church?

Glendora, CA

Hmmmmm. Let me guess. I think Mr. Lehmann just might be a democrat.


kiaoraguy: Yeah! When I was stationed in Germany, even one little girl, perhaps just 6 years old, already knew that Latter-day Saints prayed a big differently than displayed on that cover. She demonstrated to her principal "arms crossed in prayer."

Monterey, CA

Marxist - The church has no official stance on any of the things you mentioned. They are for the eternal salvation of our souls, not for politics. They stress self-reliance, living within your means, and helping the poor. The church has its own welfare system that is available to members if needed and if the members seek to utilize it. They have no stance on members using Government welfare programs, other than try to be self-sufficient. And, yes, you can be a socialist and in good standing in the church. There are many members who are.

Charlottesville, VA

Hopefully the average Harpers reader is astute enough to tell propaganda when s/he sees it. This article does a good job of pointing out some of its inaccuracies.

And look at the cover illustration--complete invention! Mormons don't pray like that, if they're supposed to be missionaries they ought to have name tags, and I know of no church publication that resembles that red book they're all holding as if it were the Book of Mormon or the Bible.

Layton, UT

Faith is a scary thing to those who fear. Religion has not always arrested the wicked parts of human nature. I think the fear and mistrust of mormonism is understandable and forgiveable--and most mormons love to forgive and forget.

Most of us just want to be ourselves.

Articles that mischaracterize my beliefs do so because they have an underlying agenda in conflict with my personal beliefs. The curious thing they never comprehend: The same rights that give me the chance to disagree peaceably with them, are the same rights that give them the chance to hold to their beliefs.

Personal agendae should be brought to light, not hidden behind sensational attacks. Why do certain political/social/religious factions mischaracterize mormons?

Because we don't need them, we don't "need" to buy their products, we don't validate their worldview. Their power and influence does not "need to" affect us. We could go on living our lives, they could cease to exist and we would go on happily without them.

We offer a viable alternative--and that's threatening.

Ultimately attackers only expose the weakness of their own agenda.

The tragedy, then, are those who buy the attacker's lies.

Prayers for them.

Danbury, CT

I don't agree at all with the doctrinal or visual premise of Lehmann's article (Lehmann means "someone in charge of a fiefdom). But I will say however that there is a very visible segment of our culture that places an inordinate importance on riches and wealth as a sign of righteousness. Look at how we promote the Huntsmans, Marriotts, etc. in our media and conversations. How many Stake and Mission Presidents are successful, wealthy businessmen ? Our leaders tend to be on the rich side. Take a look at the HUGE houses on the Wasatch Front and the obsession in our youth with expensive style and fashion. I am astounded whenever I meet a youth group from Utah or SL counties at the clothes and fashion.

Maybe you don't see it anymore, if you live on the Wasatch Front, but the evolution into a wealth-obsessed society is apparent from the outside. I don't believe our scriptures or leaders promote wealth for one second, but many of the rest of us do.

I think a little healthy introspection on "where would he get such an idea" could be a healthy one...

Swedish reader
Stockholm, Sweden

This is only the beginning. If Mitt Romney becomes a presidential candidate (and certainly if he is elected) more malicious stuff will be published. We as Mormons will have to show others by the way we behave that this kind of ill-willed misrepresentation isn't true. It amazes me that a magazine such as Harper's don't check out the facts better before they publish something. In Sweden, where I live, the editor of a magazine or newspaper is legally responsible for what is printed in it. If I were the editor, I'd be very reluctant to publish something so obviously non-objective, no matter who it's about. Oh, and by the way "marxist": the Church isn't opposed to social security or any form of joint funding of medical care, nor does it propagate for them. We are encouraged to use our own judgement is the way we vote and to remember the Saviour's teachings on how to treat others. Read Matthew 25 to see how he said to treat the poor and the ill.

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