“In a church where members speak approximately 170 different languages as
their first language, only God knows the number of his prophets.”No. There are 15. More if you count the Seventies, but they are still quite
easy to count by mortal men. The gentleman who uttered this quote misunderstood
the particular scripture to which he was referring. Diversity in the
Church is rich, richer in fact than most other Christian denominations, which
typically tend to divide themselves up into racially segregated congregations.
The Church’s diversity was one of the things that surprised me the most
when I first became exposed to it. That is probably less evident in Utah than it
is in other parts of the country, which causes some people to develop a very
myopic perception of it. But it’s certainly there, and as is plainly
visible from perusing the Ensign, ethnic diversity in Church leadership is just
as rich as that in the body of the Church itself. Admittedly, there
is a great deal of political homogeneity in the Church (particularly, though not
exclusively, in Utah). But then again, some political beliefs are simply
incompatible with the Gospel. Including conservative Republican ones.
If diversity means Nationality-then the Church is already diverse, but the more
the merrier. . If it's skin color-most Church members probably have the
medium brown skin shared by most people on earth, but there are members of every
hue across the world, as well as in my Ward and Family, and the more the
merrier. If it's gender, most active members are probably female, but males
are doing well also. If it's sexuality, I think the focus on the Church is
eternal pro-creative families, sealed by faith in Christ, and I don't see a
need to change that but we should encourage all to benefit from faith in Christ.
There are some who would mold The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints to
their "vision". There are some who would analyze it and make
"suggestions" for improvement. There are others who would criticize it
for what it is. I say, praise God for what it is and what it has done. People
forget, this "new face of Mormonism" is a result - in most cases - of
the Church itself reaching out and sharing information it has no obligation to
share, but distributes in order to build good will and allay concerns. The Church is still the custodian of the priesthood of God. It is still
the champion of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is still the preeminent
proponent of the Book of Mormon. It is still an ensign to the world. And by
revelation, it will remain those things. The gospel will not be taken from the
earth. It is reaching out to every nation, kindred, tongue, and people. The
work is accelerating and will continue to do so until Jesus Christ returns.All this is happening, but not without opposition, as He Himself warned.
He invites us to join Him in this work.
Diversity suffocates in an authoritarian church that requires conformity. After
generations of austere isolation from ‘the world,’ the LDS Church is
emerging from its cocoon at what sometimes seems like a snail’s pace. But
the face of Mormonism is incrementally changing.
I'm really pleased with the opening up of a more public historical
anthology. For too long, when only a few had access it was easy for them to
pick facts out of context and confuse issues that are really quite
straightforward. It's like some people had gone through the cereal box and
picked out all the raisins, claiming that the box was still full of them.
It's nice to see that the cereal box is mostly cereal and that the raisins
taken out of context now add good flavor to the whole.
Look at the most recent conference ensign and take a look at the leadership
pictures. Diversity in the leadership of the church is shockingly lacking.
I've run across a large degree of diversity in the faith. Some hold to the
teachings of past Apostles and Prophets and some adhere to new ones. Some hold a
literal belief in the BOM and many see it as non-literal. Some believe in
evolution others are completely opposed to it. Fortunatley the tent is very
large and the spirit speaks to us all differently.
There is only one God the Father, and there is only one Jesus Christ. If you
accept that, then you must accept the idea that they created all of us. Having
considered this, it is simply not reasonable to think that man can change who
God the Father and Jesus Christ are. They are unchanging, it is mankind that
must "change" to meet the God Head, not the other way around.
God's laws are higher than those He gives us to live, simply because of our
own weaknesses, but as we learn to follow those God has appointed to lead us, we
cannot go astray. To follow any and every "whim" of society, based on
who is most persuasive is a serious invitation for disaster.
I concur with islandboy. The church is quite diverse socially, ethnically,
culturally, politically, and economically, but the dominance of the Wasatch
Front-centric image of the church obscures this. I believe this is changing
slowly, but in my experience Utahns seem inclined to ignore the fact that
they're a minority within the church in the US, much less the rest of the
world. Much of the rest of the world views Mormons the same way, resulting in
unfortunate stereotypes that don't reflect a vibrant, diverse
membership.And Esquire is quite right about leadership. I hope that
General Authorities increasingly reflect the international church.
Maybe diversity is weak in Utah, but everywhere else the members are very
“Yet … the growth of Mormonism in Africa … has been quite
modest, and compared to other traditions, disappointing.”"The main reason for this is the church’s lack of accommodation to
African cultures and worship styles, he said."I can think of a
more compelling reason.
Diversity is still weak, especially in the leadership. I suspect that will come
over time. But if the Church remains predominantly of one political persuasion,
true diversity will be slower than it should.