Category: Mormonism/Mormon Church

Research resources: Apologetics Index entry on Mormonism

Mormons agree to stop baptizing Jewish Holocaust victims

Since 1840, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have been encouraged to perform baptisms in temples for their deceased relatives. The Denver Post writes: However, the Mormon baptism of hundreds of thousands of Jewish Holocaust victims created a 15-year controversy for the Salt Lake City-based church. On Sept. 1, the church made an agreement with Jewish leaders, acknowledging that the practice had “unintentionally caused pain,” with an LDS pledge to American Jewish leaders to stop the practice. Yet church critics say it’s easier said than done, and the Holocaust exception doesn’t stop the secret proxy baptisms

The Mormon Church is a cult of Christianity

Republican Senate candidate Sharron Angle on Monday disavowed a claim by her former pastor that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a cult, the Las Vegas Review Journal reports.

Angle’s former pastor, John Reed of Sonrise Church in Reno, last week called the Mormon Church a cult. But the term cult has different meanings, depending on the context in which it is used. For instance, while the Mormon Church has some cult-like elements, it generally is not considered to be a cult in the sociological sense of the term.

However, theologically the LDS Church is a cult of Christianity. That is, while it claims to be Christian in nature, its doctrines and practices violate the essential doctrines of the historic Christian faith.

In its defence the LDS Church often points out that its full name includes the words ‘Jesus Christ.’ Which is almost as clever as insisting that you can buy a $20 ‘Rolex’ in Tijuana…

Suspect in Mormon church attack was former member

The suspected gunman in the fatal shooting of a Mormon church official in Central California was mentally ill and believed the church had wronged him when he was a member in the 1980s, family members said Monday.

Kenneth James Ward, 47, would go through delusional spells when he blamed the Mormon church for his troubles, according to his younger brother, Mike Ward.

“When my brother had one of his episodes, he conjured up in his mind that he thought that the Mormons were sending him to hell. He would tell me that,” Mike Ward, 44, said in a phone interview from his home in Bakersfield.

What the Mormons do not tell you in their ads

It’s an extreme makeover, image-style. Fearing that they have been mistakenly stereotyped by the public, Mormons have launched an aggressive advertising campaign to prove that they are just like everybody else.

“We want to help people understand that we are not who they think we are,” said Ron Wilson, the church official overseeing the campaign. “We’re no different than you. In fact, we might be your next-door neighbor.”

To a certain extend that may be true, but there’s a lot the Mormon Church doesn’t tell you in the ads — just like the LDS missionaries on your doorstep are not upfront about Mormon theology either.

Theologically, Mormonism is a cult of Christianity. Simply slapping the name of Jesus onto a church doesn’t make it Christian in the same way the name Rolex on a $25 watch on sale in Tijuana doesn’t mean you get the genuine article.

In the end, no amount of advertising takes away from the fact that the Mormon Church has plagiarized and repackaged the Christian faith.

Ousted LDS leader dies

George P. Lee once enjoyed such widespread respect as the first and only American Indian LDS general authority that many Mormons believed he someday might become an apostle or even higher.

But such talk ended in 1989, when Lee, who died this week at age 67, was excommunicated for “heresy” and “conduct unbecoming a member of the church.” Later, he admitted to attempted child sex abuse, and his wife divorced him.

“George P. Lee is one of the truly tragic figures in modern Mormon history,” Armand Mauss, an LDS sociologist in Irvine, Calif., said Thursday. He was “both created and destroyed” by changing Mormon teachings and policies regarding native peoples.

Lee claimed his ouster was triggered by his opposition to the faith’s shifting approach to its Indian members.

The doctrines of the Mormon Churchtheologically a cult of Christianityfrequently change, in part because the church’s scriptures have many internal problems requiring edits and ‘new revelations’.

Gay Mormons condemn LDS role in Argentina

Affirmation, a support group for gay and lesbian Mormons, is criticizing the LDS Church for its efforts to thwart the legalization of same-sex marriage in Argentina.

Last week, Argentina became the first Latin American nation to allow gay marriage. Mexico City also sanctions such unions.

Despite the LDS Church’s claim that it had not taken a stand on Argentina’s move to allow gay marriage, a high-ranking church official did join other religious leaders there to plan opposition to the bill.

Mormons wonder: Why are we still talking about polygamy?

In the July 2010 issue of Ensign (an official Mormon magazine), LDS apostle M. Russell Ballard urges Mormons not to be sidetracked by the polygamy issue. “This ended in the Church as an official practice in 1890. It’s now 2010. Why are we still talking about it? It was a practice. It ended. We moved on. If people ask you about polygamy, just acknowledge that it was once a practice but not now and that people shouldn’t confuse any polygamists with our church.”

Christian apologist Rob Bowman answers Ballard’s question by enumerating the reasons why Mormons cannot plausibly claim that polygamy is an “irrelevant issue.”

“Polygamy in America is the cultural offspring of the LDS Church, and they cannot divest themselves of their responsibility for it by disowning the child,” Bowman concludes.