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'I'm a Mormon' campaign extending to 12 U.S. cities

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  • c.baker huntsville, al
    Oct. 5, 2011 12:45 p.m.

    to WA Alum&Dad . . . This "campaign" worries me. When we "are TAUGHT what to say when people ask" . . . shouldn't we be asking why? It seems we are in an all out battle to take over the Internet, and I want to know why. No wonder non-Mormons think we are so strange.

  • Mom of 2 Eagle Mountain, UT
    Oct. 3, 2011 12:13 p.m.

    I hate this idea. It's ridiculous. It makes the LDS church look greedy and desperate.

  • Gary Federal Way, WA
    Oct. 1, 2011 2:11 a.m.

    Actually according to the article, it was tested FIRST in New York City and found to be very successful in removing many of the myths that surrounded people when asked what they knew about a Mormon. Surveys showed that many people still did not know what LDS was, but recognize more what Mormon was and many also thought they knew enough, but really didn't. The myths are what the church wants to dispel in a good way. People simply need to be made more aware of the church beliefs. No one is being compelled to believe. Rather just to allow people to be more informed rather than believing myths.

    It's true that in the past, we were encouraged to label ourselves as LDS or by name of the church. That has now changed by Pres Monson where we are encouraged to use Mormon as well. The church simply wants to spread the message of what the Mormon beliefs are and to show that the Mormons consist of normal people all around us, that we are not a strange people and like our neighbors in many ways with values. So I don't think any Mormons need be negative about this.

  • O'really Idaho Falls, ID
    Sept. 30, 2011 11:53 p.m.

    To Bricha

    I don't think getting the message out "any way possible" is always the best policy. It's possible to be overbearing and flaunt oneself too much. I watched from a distance one time while an over-enthsiastic missionary tried to engage in conversation with a woman in an outdoor mall. She turned and walked away, clearly not interested. He followed her, still talking to her back as she hustled away.

    It's very possible to offend and permanently antagonize some who actually would be interested if approached from a different angle. People are suspicious in general of advertizing that is overdone, repeated ads on TV or the radio, for instance "Headon-Apply directly to the forehead!", the furniture or car salesman who won't leave you alone, or full page ads in the newspaper. They're pretentious,obnoxious and expensive. A common reaction is, "What are they trying to sell me?" Many people dig in their heels and become more determined not to give them their money or the time of day. While this Mormon campaign may inform a few, I fear it will more likely annoy many more. It feels too calculated, "in your face" and insincere.

  • O'really Idaho Falls, ID
    Sept. 30, 2011 11:18 p.m.

    @ AZRods...One can be a full-fledged, card-carrying member of the church and still be critical of some new program or other. I am one. Have been all my life and intend to be for eternity.

    This particular campaign rubs me wrong. I'm sensitive to it because I'm friends with enough people of other faiths who roll their eyes at it and become annoyed when these ads come on TV. I think there are more effective ways to reach people and teach them of Christ besides monster sized banners on the sides of buildings. It's as if the idea originated from the heart of the BYU Sports Fan Club. It smacks of self centeredness, focus on outward appearance to the point of insecurity and trying to convince the world that "We are so cool". The Gospel isn't about who we are. It's about Jesus Christ, his atonement and the Plan of Salvation.

    It's fundamentally wrong for anyone to join the church because they relate to a member who drives a Harley or surfs or paints. Wrong motive. It should be because they feel the spirit, yearn for baptism and the salvation that only Jesus Christ can provide.

  • Canuk SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Sept. 30, 2011 9:37 p.m.

    As my husband would say to business associates when they asked him about his religion - "I'm a Christian - Mormon trained". And that seemed to answer their questions.
    I don't want to be like every other church, as some of you have stated, but I want others to know that we don't have horns. I don't want our religion
    watered down, and it isn't. If you read some of the things that are
    said about Romney and his religion, you have to know that there are
    some weird ideas out there. Funny no one talks about Harry Reid's
    religion, or much about Huntsman's religion.

  • Canyontreker TAYLORSVILLE, UT
    Sept. 30, 2011 8:13 p.m.

    And I'm a Mormon Christian.

  • mightymite DRAPER, UT
    Sept. 30, 2011 7:51 p.m.

    Poorly run campaign that just drains financial resources that could be used to help others rather to persuade others.

  • Ms.W South Jordan, UT
    Sept. 30, 2011 7:10 p.m.

    I'm not a big fan of nick names. Why don't they use "I'm LDS"? "Mormon" is not who I am. I'm a member of the LDS church.

  • bricha lehi, ut
    Sept. 30, 2011 4:50 p.m.

    O'really

    I thought I might give my two cents to your response. While of course everyone is entitled to their own opinion, I disagree with you and think this campaign is a great thing. As we believe, the entire Work and Glory of our Heavenly Father is to bring about our immortality and eternal life. So in that respect I think that Christ would be advertising Himself since it is only through Him that we can return to God. Knowing this why wouldn't we try to get this message to every living soul any way possible. I hope to be able to return to God after this life, and I really hope there is a HUGE crowd there with me :)

  • bricha lehi, ut
    Sept. 30, 2011 4:40 p.m.

    I wish I could recommend more than once for raybies comment :)

  • WA_Alum&Dad Marysville, WA
    Sept. 30, 2011 4:35 p.m.

    There has been a big effort here in the 17 Seattle/Tacoma stakes to be ready for when we come online this coming week. Two weeks ago we used the Sunday School and Priesthood/RS time blocks to teach the members how to make their own profiles on Mormon.org and what to say when acquaintances ask "why is your church doing this?" 50% of adults in the early test markets had someone ask them this question. 100% of the youth did.

    If "I'm a Mormon" and Mormon.org work as planned (and I think they surely can), Mormon.org will allow any member who desires to be, a true member-missionary anywhere in the English-speaking world. Remember writing your testimony on the inside cover of a Book of Mormon? This is that supercharged and on steroids. Thirty years ago as a full-time missionary, I could only have dreamed about a program like this.

  • comeonman PAYSON, UT
    Sept. 30, 2011 4:35 p.m.

    i believe the church is doing a good job when it comes to their im a mormon ad campaign. but i wish they would also try to emphasize more that we are Christians. i believe that is the key to reaching people. people all over the country and the world for that matter have so many mis conceptions about the church and i believe promoting the fact that we are christians will help tremendously.

  • hatumai Holladay, UT
    Sept. 30, 2011 4:32 p.m.

    I'm sorry but this campaign is a waste. We're going to ridiculous lengths to look normal to a small segment of the population that's too radical to care. We're ordinary enough to most people, and we just look bizarre when we make a fuss over it.

  • DanielWayneLewis SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Sept. 30, 2011 4:01 p.m.

    I don't know if trying to be like every other church, or even simply trying to give off that impression, is the right idea. If I wanted what was offered by the Evangelicals or by the Catholics, etc, I would have joined those churches a long time ago. One thing we have to watch out for is becoming just another variant of the Evangelicals. I joined the LDS church not because it is the same or similar to every other church, but because it is different.

  • no fit in SG St.George, Utah
    Sept. 30, 2011 2:25 p.m.

    Keeping a vigilant watch for:
    I'm a Genuine Jew: Mainstream Moslems are your Neighbors; Here Comes a Lovable Lutheran; Catholics are Charismatic; Epic Truths from the Episcopalians; Methodists are Truly Moderate; Buddhism is Better, and so on.....

  • ulvegaard Medical Lake, Washington
    Sept. 30, 2011 2:01 p.m.

    This isn't about trying to be more popular or shoving anything into anyone's face. As stated by AZRods, the mandate was given and has been reaffirmed in every dispensation -- the gospel must go forth; not to be the most popular kids on the block, not to increase tithing coffers with additional converts.

    Granted, many don't accept our explanation, but our convictions declare that the saving ordinances of this gospel must be proclaimed to the world that each person might choose for themselves, having a knowledge of the choice laid before them. Maybe people will hate us for these campaigns, others may come to love us and some won't think twice about it either way. So it is and so it has always been, but we must reach out until the gospel has reached every nation and sounded in every ear and then the Great Jehovah will say "The work is done." and not until then.

  • USMCer POST FALLS, ID
    Sept. 30, 2011 1:07 p.m.

    Here in the Northwest, the ads have been good and positive. Keep it up!

  • AZRods Maricopa, AZ
    Sept. 30, 2011 12:36 p.m.

    It's easy to see who would just prefer that the LDS just sit back, be quiet and go quietly into the night.
    That is not the message The Savior gave when he sent his diciples to go forth and proclaim the gospel to every kindred nation tongue and people.
    That advice was not just for ancient times, but for our times, and God's purposes don't change.
    Critics and borderline members have always been ashamed of or critical of the church and more specifically of Christ himself.
    The fact that many in the LDS church perform good works in their communities, and yet we are still relatively unknown is a very good reason to increase our exposure.
    That requires that members be who they claim to be and live the way they should.
    But it also gives people a much greater understanding of who we "really are" vs the decades of missinformation and misunderstandings that the church has passed through.
    So just as the anti ads have their right to present their "version" of OUR religion, I see nothing wrong and everything right about proclaiming who we are and what we believe. Sorry if that offends someone;)

  • Kami Bountiful, Utah
    Sept. 30, 2011 12:01 p.m.

    @ ed in atl, to be honest, though, when LDS help in a community effort they tend to want to have labels so that everyone recognizes who they are. There are MANY MANY groups that volunteer after weather disasters and most of them don't wear labels; thus, their group is not very identifiable. When I help in community activities with the church I chose not to wear the "recommended" label. And I help in many community activities that don't involve organized church members.

  • bebot SHAWNEE MISSION, KS
    Sept. 30, 2011 11:59 a.m.

    Stephen Colbert put it best when he said sarcastically Mormons are crazy for believing Joseph Smith got gold plates from an angel, but every other Christian and Jew isnt because Moses got the ten commandments from God in the form of a burning bush. Atheists can make strong arguments and are free to judge against all religions, but for a turtle to call a tortoise slow is ridiculous. Not sure why Mormons are always attacked for having weird beliefs. I do think that many Mormons are very different from the rest of the world, in good ways and bad. All religions are weird to people outside that faith. I don't feel like I relate to many of the members because of the "social Mormon culture" that I heavily dislike. Being outside of Utah is a breath of fresh air, people seem to be genuine and not try to be perceived as perfect saints. Too much attention and judgement is focused on sins that can be easily identified like tithing, word of wisdom, shopping on Sunday, ect. Instead of the serious problems like honesty(look at consumer complaints about dishonest summer sales companies that are 95% recently returned missionaries.

  • ed in atl Duluth, GA
    Sept. 30, 2011 11:42 a.m.

    We are excited to have this media blitz in the South. If people would just open their hearts and minds to us. We did good works in B'ham for tornado relief and I heard someone comment the 2 groups that helped most were the Mormons and people from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

  • BCA Murrieta, CA
    Sept. 30, 2011 11:32 a.m.

    I am a Mormon. I no longer go to church and no longer believe. Know what else? My type of Mormon is very much in the majority of all Mormons, when you consider the church world-wide.

  • cymrul West Valley City, UT
    Sept. 30, 2011 11:27 a.m.

    These advertisements could really backfire. It could look like the Church is trying to shove jsut how "normal" they really are down people's throats. Also, if people get curious and start to Google and get sent to anti-LDS websites wouldn't that make the whole thing counter productive?

  • tyndale1 Pullman, WA
    Sept. 30, 2011 10:47 a.m.

    re: no Fit in SG

    Yes, absolutely this would still be happening whether or not two Mormons were running for President. This is not about politics. It is about correcting misconceptions, one of the greatest of which is the one you just sited. We have candidates and influential individuals on both sides of the aisle and think you really need to consider the individual and the platform and not the religion.

    On the other hand, I am not so sure this would be happening if the "Book of Mormon" Musical hadn't come out, and been so popular. It begs for some clarity on what Mormons believe and who Mormons really are. This campaign promotes the best asset the Church has, the individual lives of our membership, as our greatest PR campaign.

    I like the explanation that since we can't move our members into all these neighborhoods physically, we can at least introduce you to who we are collectively.

    I think the campaign could also help members better live up to what is expected of them personally. I know it makes me proud to be a Mormon. I want to live my life better and be an even better neighbor.

  • O'really Idaho Falls, ID
    Sept. 30, 2011 10:24 a.m.

    I agree with Kami and pmmccombs. I dont like billboards. As members of the church, our actions and genuine love/service for others, our clean lifestyle and contributions to society and a positive article in the newspaper every now and then should be the only ads we need (besides the missionaries). I don't believe Jesus Christ was about advertising himself. He was about doing good for others and sharing a really important message. I have a hard time believing he'd want a 40 ft poster of himself draped over a building.

    I have lived out of Utah for over a decade. I think this big of a campaign isn't necessary. It's frankly embarrassing. The areas where I've lived where the church is best accepted were the areas where members of the church worked side-by-side on positive community projects with people from other faiths, where members of the church were stellar citizens and formed genuine friendships with their neighbors, where the LDS youth are high achievers, friendly and cheerful and lived their standards without apology. When we get so focused on our image it tends to annoy and alienate others rather than draw them to us.

  • no fit in SG St.George, Utah
    Sept. 30, 2011 10:18 a.m.

    Just wondering if this would be happening if Mitt Romney and John Huntsman were not running for President of the United States.................

  • Tom in CA Vallejo, CA
    Sept. 30, 2011 10:17 a.m.

    "Makes you wonder how your tithing dollars are being put to use."

    RANCH:

    Not me.

    The one thing I will never have to wonder about is how the Church uses its money. You should learn more about it before you chuck your next grenade.

  • pmccombs Orem, UT
    Sept. 30, 2011 9:51 a.m.

    Nothing says "commodity" like a billboard campaign. In the 21st century, even our religion is factory-made, correlated, standardized, packaged in pretty colors, and sold to the masses. We are more interested in appearances than in substance--heaven forbid that anyone should think ill of us. We'll rest easier once everyone understands that we're just another harmless subculture; another shade of vanilla with a few happy quirks sprinkled on for flavor.

  • Kami Bountiful, Utah
    Sept. 30, 2011 9:22 a.m.

    Personally, I don't like billboards of any kind.

  • carver Enterprise, UT
    Sept. 30, 2011 9:16 a.m.

    Ranch.

    I think most of us pay our tithing to the Lord Jesus Christ and don't plan on asking him what he did with it.

  • tyndale1 Pullman, WA
    Sept. 30, 2011 9:14 a.m.

    One of the problems the Church has is that although they do such good in the world, and although they are the fourth largest denomination in the United States, they are still not known by the majority of Americans. Many of these people, if they knew we existed and if they knew we were decent and caring and normal human beings, and if they knew where to find us, be they of whatever nationality they may be, they would be more open to listening to our doctrines and joining our great cause and having the wonderful blessings of this gospel of Jesus Christ in their lives. So this campaign is incredibly effective in doing that, with our help.

    The Apostle Paul said: "ye are our epistle". The lives of our members speak volumes when we try to determine what is the end result of being a Mormon. It is fantastic to be a Mormon. I absolutely love it. We care and we bless lives. Now that is not unique or exclusive to our faith, but it shows we are at least like you, if nothing more. That is a step forward in perception to many.

  • sfcretdennis Nice, CA
    Sept. 30, 2011 8:52 a.m.

    I think this is great, all churches should do the same so everyone will be able to understand each other and may be there well be less greaf given to someone ells believes.

  • J-TX Allen, TX
    Sept. 30, 2011 8:26 a.m.

    Raybies had the best comment on this post. If you don't understand it, watch Steven Colbert more often....

  • Canyontreker TAYLORSVILLE, UT
    Sept. 30, 2011 7:23 a.m.

    As few as 2 years ago if you Googled "Mormon", which most missionary contacts do, you were hit with lists of anti-Mormon propaganda. I think this campaign may have turned that around.
    If you are interested in this subject than click on your favorite LDS sites to improve the search results. Join the conversation too.

  • JKayDS EULESS, TX
    Sept. 30, 2011 7:15 a.m.

    L. Kaiser
    You are always going to have people offended about something that we do!
    I don't know where in Redmond you live but I remember living in Washington and I can NEVER remember when we or anyone I knew had missionaries tracking their streets once a week..I know as a missionary that we did not do that.
    Weather people questions our motives or not should not be a deciding factor here. What is important is missionary work and getting people to understand who we are.
    We have PLENTY of good works going on all the time and to those that find the truth of the church through these avenues, to them this also could be classified as "good works."

  • Everest American Fork, UT
    Sept. 30, 2011 7:10 a.m.

    Good works are the best advertisement. Every member should be a walking, talking billboard of the faith. But although Americans don't believe Mormons have horns, they do believe Mormons are outside the mainstream and "dismissible" because of their differences. So, some media advertising helps. The Mormon doctrine is different than other faiths- that's true- but the members of the Church are pretty much like everybody else, with the same challenges, weaknesses, temptations, sins, jobs, hopes, dreams, and heart as the rest of the population. Somebody recently told me he was reading the Book of Mormon just to see what the fuss was all about. He may not join the Church, but it's always nice when someone actually knows something before dismissing and disparaging. Have a good weekend all.

  • GAmom Athens, GA
    Sept. 30, 2011 6:45 a.m.

    Agree Ute Alumni and JP!! And for those of you who are having fits about this--obviously you haven't been very far outside the Utah area. Tons of other churches have billboards advertising their churches and ministers. This is common in most areas as I've traveled and especially here in the south along the interstates are you going to have fits because they do it too? And what about the big TV ad campaign done in the last year by the Catholic church? Is that just as horrible as the LDS church doing it or are you being selective in your rants? And Bobosmom--yeah for small town Nebraska!! Wish it was also going to the Norfolk area, the BEST small town in Nebraska!

  • raybies Layton, UT
    Sept. 30, 2011 6:08 a.m.

    High Five a Tiger!

  • John Robert Mallernee Gulfport, MS
    Sept. 30, 2011 1:30 a.m.

    Greetings:

    Members of The Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-day Saints can also create individual profile pages on the Church's official MORMON web site, where they can answer questions, offer opinions, and share personal experiences and/or testimony.

    That web site even provides an automatic Internet link "button", labelled, "I'M A MORMON", which you can embed on your own (not the Church's) web site.

    The "I'M A MORMON" button is prominently featured on my own web site, "OUR ETERNAL STRUGGLE", which is my personal journal.

    Having a personal journal (which we're commanded to do) is a lot easier and far more interesting on the Internet than tediously writing in a book, because a web site journal can include VIDEO, and be interactive!!!

    Thank you.

    John Robert Mallernee
    Armed Forces Retirement Home
    Gulfport, Mississippi 39507

  • L Kaiser REDMOND, WA
    Sept. 30, 2011 12:10 a.m.

    I think people who are offended by this view religeon as a private matter. When they see billboards and missionaries walking their neighborhood streets weekly, it may come across as pushy. People start to question the motives, many believe actions speak much louder then words/PR statements so they feel its a poor decision to spend money on the advertising. The good works and churches actions should be enough PR, if its not I begin to wonder what we could do to accomplish more through works and not billboards. The "im a mormon" business cards missionaries pass out are creating more trash in my neighborhood then spreading the gospel. Let our actions be our advertising, not clever quotes on billboards and business cards. I found that im the minority in this belief last sunday however.

  • Wyclif OREM, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 10:42 p.m.

    One of the many misconceptions that people have about Mormons is that think they are from a cookie-cutter mold. This campaign is fantastic at showing the diversity of lives of those who embrace The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They are individuals as unique and as interesting as anyone in America. If you have not yet visited mormon.org, give it a try. You will see what I mean. I love the videos the most, but the printed testimonials are also quite interesting. The videos are also available on Youtube and on Facebook. Just search for mormon.org on either of those pages.

  • JP Chandler, AZ
    Sept. 29, 2011 9:13 p.m.

    One of the missions of the church is to proclaim the gospel. Why would any faithful tithe payer be upset at the church for using tithing funds for that purpose? This gives reluctant member-missionaries an easy way to get involved in mission work.

  • ute alumni Tengoku, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 8:46 p.m.

    ranch
    I don't know of any tithe payers that wonder how the church uses the LORD'S money.

  • christoph Brigham City, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 8:26 p.m.

    One reason why the Lord's church disappeared 1900 years ago: no advertisement, billboards, newspapers, airplanes, trains, automobiles, printing presses, microphones, magazines, cell phones, computers, technology, etc.

  • American man WOODS CROSS, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 7:04 p.m.

    bgl,Santa Monica,CA:

    Please explain who is protesting? And how did you come to that conclusion?

  • Hawkyo SYRACUSE, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 6:57 p.m.

    I think this is great. It will hopefully help those LDS members who shy away from public settings share their religion in a comfortable and open way. Open dialog can go a long way towards building relationships based on similarities instead of focusing on the differences.

  • coltakashi Richland, WA
    Sept. 29, 2011 5:56 p.m.

    There is a large LDS presence here in Washington State, with LDS members being as many as 12 to 15% of the people in the Tri-Cities of Richland, Kennewick and Pasco (totalling around 250,000 total population) in the south central region of the state. The general population likely has no appreciation for how many LDS are among their neighbors.

    So will Mormon.org focus on members who are in the region of each target market so people who visit the site can find LDS who are in their home state?

  • Colorado Reader Littleton, CO
    Sept. 29, 2011 5:52 p.m.

    Looking forward to it in Denver! A great way to share our beliefs and show how much common ground we have with our neighbors and friends.

  • Ted H. Midvale, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 5:50 p.m.

    palintram and hutterite,

    I'm glad this campaign bothers you. I think it is hilarious when something so insignificant causes people to throw fits(if not an outward fit on these boards I'm positive inside its causing you to throw a three year-old like temper tantrum).

    I love that all things LDS upset you so. I absolutely love it.

    Oh, and because I know you'll love this: I'll pray for you. And enjoy conference this weekend!

  • bgl Santa Monica, CA
    Sept. 29, 2011 5:34 p.m.

    Methinks they dost protest WAAAAAAAAY too much.

  • bobosmom small town, Nebraska
    Sept. 29, 2011 5:33 p.m.

    Interesting they would put Lincoln and Hastings Nebraska together. Lincoln and Hastings aren't that close together. Lincoln is by the KS border and Hastings is I'm the central part of the state. But I'm glad they are doing it as well as in Omaha.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 5:30 p.m.

    The PR machine rolls on.

  • Andermart Pullman, WA
    Sept. 29, 2011 5:05 p.m.

    We are so excited for the TV and Billboards to come here to the Pacific Northwest. We are also ready for it. What a great tool to dispel myths and misconceptions about our faith, to help people understand that we not only believe in but also try to follow Jesus Christ, and to give millions here an avenue to easily locate an LDS Church to visit, or to simply receive additional and accurate information about the Church. It is a great time to be a Mormon. Bring it. It will also help us bridge the gap between the names Mormon and LDS, or The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

  • Ranch HUNTSVILLE, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 5:04 p.m.

    The LDS Church has put their PR machine into overdrive.

    Makes you wonder how your tithing dollars are being put to use.

  • CT98 Saint George, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 4:58 p.m.

    I wonder what the cost is of this marketing campaign? I'm not trying to start anything just purely curious. I would imagine the cost would range in the tens of millions. I personally like the campaign and have really enjoyed the "I'm a Mormon" videos online.

  • Clarissa Layton, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 4:50 p.m.

    Awesome!

  • Palintram Holladay, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 4:05 p.m.

    Oh no . . .