Among the many religious movements, Mormons clearly stand out. It is one of the largest movements in the Latter-day Saint movement. Adherents build on the teachings of Joseph Smith, Jr., who published the Book of Mormon in 1830. This work is revered by believers on a par with the Bible. The author himself claimed that the records are a translation of the ancient chronicles compiled by the prophet Mormon and his son Moroni.
Since then, this religious trend has spread quite strongly, its positions in the United States are especially strong. Even the 2012 Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney was a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Despite the obvious presence of Mormons in American life, even there they do not have a very good idea of what this movement is. It is not surprising that this religion is overgrown with numerous myths, some appeared due to ignorance, misinterpretation of the subject, and some are deliberately spread by ill-wishers.
Mormons practice polygamy. The church officially abandoned polygamy as early as 1890. Then its head, Wilford Woodruff, issued the "Manifesto", which advised Mormons not to enter into such forms of marriage, which are prohibited by the laws of the country. However, not everyone complied with the instructions of the President of the Church, it was the poet who in 1904 the new President, Joseph F. Smith, published the second Manifesto. Since then, any Mormon who practices polygamy openly or secretly must be excommunicated. The same groups that continue to live in polygamy are radical movements in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. And this happens outside the main majority of millions of believers. True, despite this, it is worth noting that the Doctrine and Covenants of Scripture describe the practice of plural marriage for Mormons. Men are allowed to have more than one spouse, but women are allowed to have only one husband. Some believe that Mormons believe because of this in the existence of polygamy in heaven.
In old Utah, Mormons were forced to practice polygamy, as there were more women than men. In fact, in the middle of the 19th century, when this practice took shape, there were still more men than women. The Mormon apostle John Widtso wrote about this in his book Testimonies and Agreements. In his opinion, the Church, through polygamy, tried to provide for a larger number of parishioners of the weaker sex with the help of men. Although it is believed that there have always been more women than men in the Church, this is not supported by evidence. On the contrary, there have always been more men among Mormons. So there is no historical evidence to support such a myth.
Mormons are not Christians. Mormon theology differs from traditional Christians in key ways - in understanding the nature of God, in relation to Jesus Christ, in revelation and scripture. Traditional Christians believe in the Trinity, that God, the Holy Spirit and Jesus are one. Mormons believe they are three different beings. Traditional Christians believe that the Bible is the only word of God, while Latter-day Saints believe in both the Bible and other scriptures, including the Book of Mormon. Nevertheless, it is Jesus Christ who is considered the main figure for the faith of Mormons, they are loyal and worship him. Christ is the Son of God and the savior of all mankind. So, as in the case of Christianity, in this case the believers also worship Jesus.
All Mormons live in Utah. Many people really call this state a whole state within a state. In Utah, Mormons live quite compactly, of which 62 percent are here. There are many believers in the neighboring states. However, there are congregations and small groups of Latter-day Saint followers throughout the United States. Mormons are quite common all over the world, they are already present in more than 100 countries. Their numbers are growing rapidly in Africa and Latin America. In fact, there are even more Mormons outside the United States than inside this country, 8.2 million versus 6.2. In Utah itself, Latter-day Saints are gradually losing their positions, by 2030 this will no longer be the largest religious denomination in the state.
In Mormons, men and women are not initially equal. Even the Apostle Paul said that in the Lord there can be neither a husband without a wife, nor a wife without a husband. So in the eyes of God in marriage, both spouses are equal. It is divinely designed that fathers should preside over their families, providing protection and everything they need. The duty of mothers is to take care of children. In fulfilling their duties, a man and a woman should help each other as equals.
Women cannot lead or make speeches in Mormon churches. Mormon clerics are really only men over the age of 12. Women can lead women's and children's organizations, conduct scripture studies, provide religious services, and speak from the pulpit. So their position is not at all as powerless as it is presented. Back in 1842, Joseph Smith founded the Relief Society, which was dedicated to helping those in need. Having grown, it is almost the largest women's organization in the world.
All Mormons are Republicans. In fact, there is no political unity in the ranks of believers. In 2011, researchers at Trinity College in Connecticut conducted a survey that showed the following results. It turned out that only 60 percent of Mormons across the country consider themselves Republicans; 14 percent of believers generally declared their support for Democrats. Mitt Romney became the first Mormon to be nominated by a major political party for president. He represents the Republicans. However, the most senior Mormon in the country is not Romney, but the leader of the Democratic majority in the US Senate, Harry Reid, representing Nevada. But the official policy of the Church itself provides for neutrality in political matters. Outside the United States, Mormons' political leanings run the gamut - from left to right, from socialists to conservatives.
Mormons baptize the dead. In fact, dead bodies are not used in such rituals. Mormons have living volunteers who represent deceased ancestors. Indeed, there is a ritual known as baptism of the dead. It resembles the usual baptism for the living. However, this ordinance is performed exclusively in Mormon temples. The candidate representing the deceased dresses in white and stands waist-deep in water. Then the baptist, also dressed all in white, says the words: “Being empowered by Jesus Christ, I baptize you in the name of [the name of the deceased] in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen". After that, the candidate sinks briefly under the water. The spoken words practically coincide with those spoken during the usual baptism. This ceremony does not mean that the deceased automatically becomes a Mormon in heaven. Latter-day Saints believe that in order to do this, a person must make his own choice during life. Those who have been baptized posthumously are never included in the church lists and are not counted in the community.
Mormons do not control births. There are more children in religious families than the average American family. However, this is not because Mormons lack birth control. The Church says that having children is the privilege of married couples, but the decision about how many offspring should be in the family and how much space they should take up is very personal and intimate. This is decided by the couple herself together with the Lord. Mormons believe that sex is more than just a way to conceive children. The handbook states that sexual relations in marriage are divinely approved not only for the purpose of procreation, but also as a way of expressing love and strengthening emotional and spiritual ties between a man and a woman.
In their temples, Mormons are naked. The rituals taking place inside the temples are closed to the public. This gives rise to fantasies and speculations about what is happening inside. In fact, the participants wear mostly white robes to participate in the ritual performances. They show the expulsion of Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden, the experience of the mortal world, and the return to the kingdom of God. At each stage of the ritual, participants make promises to God. Also in the temples couples of Mormons unite, for living together both in this life and in the next.
If a Mormon becomes President of the United States, then he will be just a puppet in the hands of his church. The Mormon Scripture addresses this issue directly. Doctrine and Covenants, Section 134, adopted by the church as early as 1835, states that religious influence should not extend to civil government. And today, Mormons declare political neutrality, specifying that they reserve the right to solve issues that are of significant importance to the community in a non-partisan manner. In other words, Mormons can defend their interests, but not through political means. True, there is evidence that lawmakers at the federal and local levels are lobbying for Mormons. But this does not mean that the church calls them or forces them to do so. The document on Mormon neutrality says that elected officials must make their own decisions, although not everyone can do this. Politicians do not have to be in agreement with each other or even with the public position of the Church. Officials must make their choice based on the best decision for the constituencies and constituencies they represent.
Mormons don't believe in the Bible. The Bible, especially the King James version, is part of Mormon Scripture. In addition to it, Latter-day Saints accept the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants, and the Pearl of Great Price as scripture. The Bible is especially often used in religious discussions and debates, it is cited in sermons, missionary activity is unthinkable without this book. Latter-day Saints believe that the Bible truly is the word of God when translated correctly.
The Mormon Church is the fastest growing in the world. In fact, the sheer number of adherents of Catholicism and Islam makes these world religions the fastest growing, both in relative and absolute terms.
There is no paid ministry in the Church of Latter-day Saints. All senior officials in this denomination in Salt Lake City are offered pay for their service. Although small employees receive no money, Doctrine and Covenants 42: 71-73 explicitly states that they should be rewarded for their work.
Reading the Book of Mormon will teach you all about Mormon doctrine. This sacred book has failed to strengthen the unique doctrine that is the foundation of faith for Latter-day Saints. Therefore, the Book of Mormon does not play a special role in the practices for subsequent deification.
All of Joseph Smith's prophecies have come true. If this were true, then Jesus would have returned to Earth in 1891. This is evidenced by the Documentary History of the Church (DIC) 2: 182. Civil war was to engulf all nations (Doctrines and Covenants (DIZ), 87: 1-3), and the sinners of the Smith generation would be erased from the face of the planet (DIC, 1: 315), a temple was to appear in the city of Independence, Missouri, with the generation of people who lived in 1832 (DIZ).
The time when the Book of Mormon was created has been proven by archaeologists. To date, there is no evidence to support the age of this Mormon scripture. Inside the Church itself, there are more and more supporters of the fact that the Book is not a truly historical document. No reputable archaeologist outside the Mormon movement views the Book of Mormon as an important archaeological artifact of the New World.
Brigham Young never taught that Adam was God. This religious leader not only taught that Adam was the Archangel Michael, but also called him our Father and our God, the only one with whom it is worth dealing and believing in him. Young said: “So let all who hear these doctrines ponder before indifference to them. After all, they prove their salvation ”(Diary of Lectures 1: 50,51). It is worth noting that Young himself called this point of view a doctrine, not a theory, on which modern Mormons rely.
Mormons are greedy, so they practice self-sufficiency. In fact, self-sufficiency means being prepared for potential and emergency situations. In this case, personal independence, diligence and frugality, as well as self-respect increase. This is how new opportunities for serving others and caring for those in need are achieved.
Mormons are prohibited from consuming caffeinated beverages. In 1833, The Word of Wisdom was published, which also spoke about the health of believers. The founder of the Church, Joseph Smith, condemned the use of tobacco, alcohol, and strong drinks. The latter were later classified by church leaders as coffee and tea. However, nothing was said about the reasons for classifying them as harmful. Many believers decided that this was because these drinks contain caffeine, which is why people began to avoid any liquids with this stimulant - for example, soda with syrup. Recently, the Church officially clarified its position, which explained that it is alcohol, coffee and tea that are prohibited. This allowed the young Mormons to launch a petition and ask for plain Coca-Cola to be sold at their training locations.
The Church categorically prohibits abortion. In 1973, an official position was announced, which is still valid today. Although the Church of Latter-day Saints is generally opposed to abortion, rare exceptions are recognized when a mother's life or health is at stake. Such a measure is also allowed if a woman has been raped and is very worried about it. But in any case, the abortion should first be discussed with a local priest and through prayer receive confirmation from God about the correctness of the chosen decision.
Mormons don't dance. Some confuse Mormons with the Amish, who are indeed extremely conservative. In fact, dancing is welcome in the Latter-day Saint Church. It is a long-standing treat for Mormons, with Joseph Smith and Brigham Young participating. Dance youth groups of Mormons, in particular between Brigham Young University, have generally received international recognition.
Mormons donate whatever they want to the church. The Church strongly encourages parishioners to give tithes to their own needs. Such a tax was known from the Old Testament. The tithe fund is used for the construction of new buildings, funding for missionaries, and education. The Church emphasizes that such donation is not a matter of money, but of faith. It is an honor and an opportunity, not a burden.
Mormons provide humanitarian assistance only to Mormons. Since the Church began keeping records of its aid in 1985, 167 different countries have received it, worth a billion dollars. In many of these countries, there are no Mormons at all, and some are not even Christian. More than 53,000 Mormon missionaries serve the world today. All of their ministry is aimed at helping the hungry, the naked, orphans and widows, regardless of their faith.
Joseph Smith died like a lamb led to the slaughter.The story of the martyrdom of a leader is very popular not only in religion, but also in other areas of life. In fact, Joseph Smith died in a shootout using a pistol secretly delivered to him at Cartridge's prison. The Documentary History of the Church, published six years after the events, states that Joseph Smith pulled a six-shot revolver from his pocket. He pulled the trigger six times, but only three times the pistol fired. Then the preacher realized that two or three people were injured and then died. However, some Mormons object to the use of the term "shootout." The battle can be a fight between equal parties, and with a gun there will be a shootout. Journalists, however, did not see this as a problem, considering the clash of the pogromists and those who defended themselves with weapons not the actual murder of Smith, but a shootout.
Mormons worship Joseph Smith. The Church has officially declared that it is not worshiping Joseph Smith, the Prophet, but its God, the eternal Father, Jesus Christ who rose from the dead. The Prophet is revered as an instrument in the hands of the Almighty.
Mormons have racial restrictions. The Church has no racial or color restrictions on those who wish to join. Likewise, priests can be black and Asian, European.