home
RSS
With 'I'm a Mormon' campaign, church counters lily-white image
Ruth Williams passes out bulletins at the Third Ward in Washington, D.C., a diverse Mormon church.
November 2nd, 2011
11:32 AM ET

With 'I'm a Mormon' campaign, church counters lily-white image

By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Washington (CNN) - The scene at a Mormon congregation here on a recent Sunday would surprise Americans who think of Mormons as young white missionaries in stiff white shirts, black ties and name tags.

Yes, there are white missionaries handing out bulletins at Washington’s Third Ward - what Mormons call their congregations - but there's also Ruth Williams, an elderly African-American woman, decked out in her Sunday best, doing the same.

White, black, Asian and Hispanic Mormons mingle before the service begins. As it gets under way, an African-American tween plays a video game on his smartphone in one pew as a 30-something white woman across the aisle taps away on her iPad.

How Mitt Romney's Mormon faith helped shape him

On this Sunday, the Sacrament - what Mormons call the remembrance of the Last Supper and what other Christians call Communion - is said in French, a nod to the area's burgeoning West African population.

It is not a special multicultural celebration Sunday. For this growing Mormon congregation in northeast Washington, it's just another weekend.

“It’s 30% Caucasian, 30% African-American, and the rest is a combination of first-generation immigrants from around the world,” says Bishop Robert Nelson, the lay leader of this congregation.

A diverse group of congregants from the Third Ward listens to a sermon.

Washington's Third Ward is a near mirror image of the diverse neighborhood it serves, jarring with the Mormon Church's image as a faith-based club for upper-class whites.

Explain it to me: What's Mormonism?

And the Mormon Church, officially called the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, says the ward represents the diverse face of modern Mormonism, a message it has been trying to spread as part of a yearlong nationwide push to counter its lily-white image.

Since January, the LDS Church has spent millions on an "I'm a Mormon" advertising campaign that features television commercials, billboards and bus signs with Mormons from African-American, Asian, Latino and other ethnic backgrounds. Just last month, the campaign entered 11 new major media markets in Texas, Indiana, Nebraska, Washington, Georgia and Arizona, hitting cities like Atlanta, Denver and Phoenix.

(You won't be seeing the ads in Iowa, South Carolina or Florida. With Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman, both Mormon, competing in the Republican presidential primaries, the church says it wants to steer clear of politics.)

The Mormon Church even used the ad campaign to launch a shot across the bow of the hit Broadway musical "The Book of Mormon," buying a digital "I'm a Mormon" billboard just down the street from the theater where the show is playing.

The musical satire, co-produced by the creators of the television show "South Park," shows earnest white American Mormon missionaries and their misadventures in proselytization in Africa.

But the billboard shows a very different face of Mormons. There is an African-American couple playing Frisbee on the beach, a Latino grandfather and granddaughter, a goateed motorcycle sculptor.

Opinion: Who says Mormons aren't Christian?

An official church website, Mormon.org, lets those interested in the church search for Mormons from diverse ethnic backgrounds and features videos from the likes of black soul singer Gladys Knight and Brandon Flowers, frontman for the rock band The Killers.

"It's to say, 'We're like you,' " said Kathleen Flake, a religious scholar from Vanderbilt Divinity School. "It's an attempt to combat stereotypes so that absolutely people are more open to see the normalcy of Mormonism."

The LDS Church says its attempt at an image makeover is as much a reflection of demographic reality as it is a PR effort. While young white missionaries may still be Mormonism's public face in the United States, they are no longer fully representative of the Salt Lake City-based church.

“Our doctrine is we’re all sons and daughters of God," says Stephen Allen, managing director of the LDS Church's missionary department. "Skin color or anything else is not a significant issue to us.”

Video: Defining Mormonism

As head of global missions, Allen supervises the 52,000 19- to 25-year-old missionaries knocking on doors around the world.

He's also executive director of the “I’m a Mormon” campaign, which began in nine markets this year.

“In terms of targeting, we’re not specifically targeting or avoiding any particular group," Allen says. "We send our missionaries all over the world to anywhere people will listen.”

As the church’s efforts to win converts has expanded internationally, “following the American flag around the world,” as Flake puts it, the LDS Church has grown more diverse.

“We’re in most of the free world right now,” Allen says. "We have a presence in Russia and Ukraine and the Baltic countries. We have a growing presence in Africa ... Nigeria, Kenya … then we have, Japan, Korea, Taiwan. There are small congregations in India, and the church is growing in those places.”

The church's membership has doubled since 1988, to 14.1 million Mormons worldwide.  Six million Mormons live in the United States. Many of the church's members live in the American West and Northwest, in some of the whitest states in the country.

But like many other churches, there has been explosive growth in the LDS Church in Latin America. There are more than a million Mormons in both Mexico and Brazil. There are nearly a million Mormons in Asia and 300,000 in Africa, according to church statistics.

“This attempt to emphasize diversity and to emphasize a wide range of people who are Mormon does reflect, in a lot of ways, what’s been going on in reality for a while,” says Matthew Bowman, an editor at a Mormon studies journal called Dialogue.

Even in the United States, the perception of who Mormons are has changed.

“We’ve done a lot of research to see what people think of us and what their perception is,” Allen says. “Twenty-five or 30 years ago, if you said, ‘When you think of the word Mormon, what comes to mind?’ the answer would have been Mormon Tabernacle choir, polygamists, racists, the Osmonds [singers Donny and Marie].”

While that's less the case today, Allen says many people still don't know what a Mormon looks like - or don't know that there are Mormons from minority backgrounds.

A spokesman for the church said it doesn't keep statistics on members' race or ethnicity.

But “it’s no longer just a predominantly white church,” Allen says. “In our early history, you know, it was founded in upstate New York in the United States and was very much a white congregation, but today it’s very diverse.”

The complexion of the average Mormon ward reflects the neighborhood where the building resides. “Mormon wards are not self-selecting,” says Richard Bushman, a visiting professor at the School of Religion of Claremont Graduate University. “In Mormon congregations, they are just geographical boundaries, and wherever you live, you go to church.”

There is no church shopping. Congregants can’t go to another ward if they don’t like the music or the doughnuts at the social hour, as in many other faith traditions.

In Washington's Third Ward, two new converts who had recently been baptized were welcomed into the church on a recent Sunday. Both women were young African-Americans. The men who formed a circle around them and prayed over them were all white.

Unlike the ward, the church's global leadership in Salt Lake City is mostly white.

It was not until 1978 that African-Americans could serve in priesthood positions in the church, a prohibition that extended back to Mormon leader Brigham Young in the 1850s.

"When you see in that ad campaign Mormons, including African-Americans, they are trying to  communicate against that stereotype that Mormons are racist, there's no question about this," says Vanderbilt's Flake. "They are trying to say, 'That's not fair. That is not who we are. Even if we were, we are not now.' "

Allen says the "I'm a Mormon" campaign was designed to assist the small army of young Mormon missionaries out knocking on doors.

"Our feeling was anything we could do to help them was really important," he says. "And helping them means softening people’s hearts.”

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Belief • Jon Huntsman • Mitt Romney • Mormonism • Politics • United States

soundoff (2,530 Responses)
  1. It's Funny

    I find it amusing that atheists and Mormon bashers are so drawn to this article. Their comments come across as either ignorant and misinformed or as if they're trying to convince themselves of their own disbelief. The only things more annoying than religious zealots are misinformed anti-s and smug atheists.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
    • LynnC

      Ignorance is bliss... the haters responding to this article are some of the happiest people I've never met!

      November 2, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
    • dont ask

      It's just amusing that people defend their religious beliefs as if they are so much more informed and knowlegable than those "atheists and mormon bashers" you speak of. No one should believe everything they read. Ask questions, design experiments, raise doubt, try try again...these are ways to live by.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:07 pm |
    • Reasonably

      Nope – just trying to ensure those that read the article dig deeper to uncover the hypocrisy of the mormon message. What did their book say about people of color before the late 70s? It's not bashing if it's truth, right?

      November 2, 2011 at 4:08 pm |
    • anothersmith

      Mormonism is a cult. Book of Morons is more to the truth and trash novel at best.
      People will believe ANYTHING. Stupid 144k believer.
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jonestown

      November 2, 2011 at 4:14 pm |
    • It's Funny

      Reasonably, how very noble of you to waste your time making sure people aren't "misinformed." I'm sure your motives are pure and not otherwise motivated. And anothersmith, thank you for providing me further amusement. You definitely don't have an unhealthy hatred of Mormons and a have a sound understanding of the subject matter.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
  2. Doc Vestibule

    CLARIFYING PREVIOUS POSTS

    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is all about the money.
    "Ti.thing is an important test of our personal righteousness. President Joseph F. Smith (1838-1918) said: “By this principle it shall be known who is for the kingdom of God and who is against it. … By it it shall be known whether we are faithful or unfaithful” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph F. Smith [1998], 276)."
    To make sure congregants are paying up, each year they must go before a Bishop for a Ti.thing Settlement.
    A member is questioned in a one-on-one interview with the Bishop to ensure the member is paying a full 10%.
    Those members who are not paying a full 10% lose their temple recommendations and are prevented from entering the Temple and therefore are in serious jeopardy of losing their Celestial blessings.
    If a member cannot get into the temple, they cannot learn the secret handshake, secret password, secret "new name" and special “sealings”.
    Without these, the member will be unable to pass Joseph Smith and the angels who guard the entrance to the Celestial Kingdom.
    Mormons are told: "if a dest.itute family is faced with the decision of paying their ti.thing or eating, they should pay their t.ithing." (Lynn Robbins, General Conference, April 2005).

    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints looks upon dark skin as a curse from God, despite such statements to the contrary as "I would not want you to believe that we bear any animosity toward the Neg.ro. Dar.kies are wonderful people, and they have their place in our church."
    – Joseph Fielding Smith, Look magazine
    It is clearly laid out in The Book of Mormon.
    In the book of Jacob, the Lamanites are "filthy" and "cursed with a sore cursing upon their skins" becuase of the sins of their fathers. And as a warning, Jacob says "I fear that unless ye shall repent of your sins that their skins will be whiter than yours, when ye shall be brought with them before the throne of God."
    . Under the direction of President Spencer W. Kimball, the First Presidency and the Twelve removed the policy that denied black people the priesthood in 1978, but did very little to disrupt the multiple discourses that had fostered the policy in the first place. Tare Church members today who continue to summon and teach at every level of Church education the racial discourse that black people are descendants of Cain, that they merited lesser earthly privilege because they were "fence-sitters" in the War in Heaven, and that there is a link between skin color and righteousness.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:01 pm |
    • anothersmith

      Moronism is about a con-man's legacy.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
    • Howard

      Great post. Amazing that they just 'started' admitting other races in the last 20 years...Um...yeah..that is a little too recent to think that they are beyond racism. They are lily white. I bet they have no elders who are other then white.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
    • Collin

      The last paragraph of your comment is completely false. Much of what you say before it is true, but so what? It's a volunteer organization and if you don't believe in the church, no one is forcing you to do so. If you don't believe in the celestial kingdom, why do you care if you aren't let into it?

      November 2, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
    • Collin

      Howard,
      Go to blacklds.org and learn.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:06 pm |
    • Leroy McMath

      Collin,

      You have to try doing some thinking for yourself.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:07 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Collin
      You admit that the LDS are extorting money from congregants and that the inst/itution is fundamentally racist, yet respond with "so what"?

      November 2, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
    • Collin

      No I do not admit that it is fundamentally racists or that it is extorting money from its members. It has no power to force members to do anything. If you think it is racist, then go to blacklds.org and see what black mormons say about it. I have never met any mormon (and I know hundreds) who advocates any policy of discrimination and I have NEVER heard doctrine in sunday school advocating discrimination of any kind. I have had mormon leaders who are black, polynesian, hispanic and asian and I have treated them with respect and they treated me with respect.
      Former mormon leaders grew up in a racist america and were often much more forward thinking than others. Even the quote from Joseph Fielding Smith (if it is true) was an expression of love, even though it showed bias and insensitivity. He felt like he was giving a complement, even if it was not done tactfully. Can you honestly tell me you are giving mormons a fair shake, trying to hear both sides? Or do you have an ax to grind?

      November 2, 2011 at 4:18 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Collin
      Let's see – if you don't prove to your bishop that you gave your full ti.the, you don't get your eternal reward.
      Where I come from, PAY OR DIE is extortion.
      And just becuase you've met lotsa non-white Mormons doesn't mean that the scripture isn't fundamentally racist!
      Have you ever heard of Uncle Tom?
      Dark skin is the Mark of Cain and those people are spiritually inferior.
      Over and over again, the idea that white = good is hammerred home in the Book of Mormon.
      1 Nephi 11:8, 1 Nephi 11:13, 1 Nephi 12:23, 1 Nephi 13:15, 2 Nephi 5:21, 2 Nephi 30:6 (1830 edition), Jacob 3:8, Alma 3:6, 3 Nephi 2:15, Mormon 5:15

      How about this:
      Dr. Lowry Nelson – a Mormon himself – sent a letter to the Mormon First Presidency questioning the official racist doctrines.
      The reply he received said, in part:
      "From the days of the Prophet Joseph Smith even until now, it is has been the doctrine of the Church, never questioned by any of the Church leaders, that the Neg.roes are not ent.itled to the full blessings of the Gospel.
      "Furthermore your ideas, as we understand them, appear to contemplate the intermarriage of the Neg.ro and White races, a concept which has heretofore been most repugnant to most normal-minded people from the ancient partiarchs till now. God's rule for Israel, His Chosen People, has been endogamous."
      – George Albert Smith J. Reuben Clark, Jr. David O. McKay

      November 2, 2011 at 4:36 pm |
    • yul

      Racism was an issue among most religious organizations- not just the LDS.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:58 pm |
  3. Dan

    These adds show that the Mormon church is mostly concerned about image. More people would like them if they actually focused on doing good works without worrying about how they are perceived. Spending millions of dollars to try to convince people that they are normal seems kind of vain. And it's strange that they want to portray themselves as working mothers and other types that don't fit the Mormon stereotype. They are taught at church that all mothers should stay home, then they have advertisements about Mormon women in the workplace? This must be confusing for active members. The ads should say "I'm a Mormon, but I'm normal, and I'm insecure about my image. Please like me!"

    November 2, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
    • Mormon Academic

      "and other types that don't fit the Mormon stereotype."

      Did you read what you just wrote? The point of the "I'm a Mormon" campaign is to inform you that your idea of what Mormons are and what the LDS Church teaches are different from reality. The LDS Church teaches that mothers best serve their children by being in the home. But the idea that mothers cannot work outside the home has been gone for 50 years. My wife has a Ph.D., is a successful business owner, and is a Mormon. Stereotypes are often poor reflections of reality.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
  4. slkwly

    So, i guess until the 1970s, God, or "their" God, did not love anyone with dark skin, even though he created them. And if their book of mormon (or bible) states that dark skin is a curse from God, how could go against that and allow people of color in to their religion? And why would any person of color want to belong to that organization knowing thats what it says?
    Also, does this affect white ppeople who belong to the church and decide to get a tan?

    November 2, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
    • Collin

      Mormon leaders in the 50's 60's and 70's researched this issue and concluded that the church's policy of excluding africans from the priesthood had no basis in LDS doctrine. So Spencer Kimball and the quorum of the twelve apostles sought to change it, and did change it, in 1978.
      The LDS church does not teach that people who are not members automatically go to hell. For more specifics, go to a mormon.org.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
    • yul

      Blacks were excluded in other churches LDS embraced them, just wasn't given the chance to hold the priesthood.

      November 2, 2011 at 5:00 pm |
  5. Mike Osmond

    Wow! It's amazing what a huge talking point this is, and how many misunderstandings there are about the "Mormon" Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

    I am a member of the Church, and I invite anybody who is truly curious, to ask a Mormon what they believe. You wouldn't ask a Mormon what a Catholic, or Baptist believes... You'd ask one of them.

    If you are really curious about what we believe, please visit our website: http://www.mormon.org

    Thank You.
    Mike Osmond

    November 2, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
    • Leroy McMath

      You guys sure love that website.

      I'm sure Nazis thought Mein Kampf had all of the answers too. Don't listen to the know-nothing Jews.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
    • Mike Osmond

      Hi Leroy,

      If you truely want to know what we believe, I'm not sure if there's a better place for you to start.

      All the best,

      Mike Osmond

      November 2, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
    • PaulyMcBee

      Better than ask a mormon: Read, study, and reasonably investigate the LDS church. An honest, unbiased look at their doctrines and principles is the best way to see the truth... Prayer, testimony, peoples experiences...while informative (for good or bad) are personal and subjective. Dig deep... dig very deep and research the history of the mormon church. The internet is a great starting point and resource for further study.... I mean, really, do you want to base knowledge about mormonism upon TV commercials and anecdotes?

      November 9, 2011 at 7:01 pm |
  6. Rebel

    Mormons certainly need to be prayed for; their disillusioned version of what Christianity really is warps those that they "witness" to.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
    • Jonesy

      Well, we (Mormons) believe Christ is savior of mankind. I believe that entails Christianity.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:13 pm |
  7. Jim Bob

    How sad that they can't be pround they're white. Religion truly is a crutch for the weak and mentally infirm.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
    • Leroy McMath

      You are racist. No magic panties.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
  8. Monti

    Interesting, the founder of the Mormon church was a criminal and looked at rocks in his hat. Grown ups today actually believe the man's line of crap which is less than 200 year sold. AMAZING!

    November 2, 2011 at 3:58 pm |
    • Erik

      I'm an MD/PhD and I believe it with all my heart. If you understood anything about God and how we works, it would not be so unbelieveable.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
  9. Trodizzle

    Religion is pretty lame, all of them. Just be honest people, we don't know the truth as to what happens after we die. Accept that and move on.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:58 pm |
    • Jonesy

      Yes. The search for truth must end now!

      Let me guess, you're anti-science too?

      November 2, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
  10. JIN

    Mormons can try all they want to to insist that they aren't bigotted. However, until they stop insisting that Jesus, Mary and God are all "pure white blue-eyed" people, they are still a bigotted organization! This is a foolish thing to believe in any event.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:58 pm |
    • Collin

      I've been a mormon all my life and never heard that in sunday school. Maybe you can point to something from church literature that shows that the church teaches that?

      November 2, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
    • jnemesh

      @Collin REALLY???? Take a look at ALL of the paintings contained in the Book of Mormon and at ANY of the illustrations presented at services. ALL of these depict Jesus as white, the angels as white, and the whole "lost tribe" as white! It may not be spoken of (at least not until you are shown the "deeper truths" of your faith), but it IS practiced!

      November 2, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
    • Howard

      Agreed here, despite what Colin posted. I have been on the tour of the temple in Salt lake city. Animatronics and all. Jesus and Mary are clearly shown as white people! Give me a break Colin! Your literature is no different from Jehovah Witnesses whom show Jesus with shorter hair and always slightly buff (looks like a California surfer).

      November 2, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
    • mum2brady

      I am LDS, and I don't know anywhere that church doctrine says Christ was blue-eyed. He was jewish and from Jerusalem – so I would doubt that he had blue eyes 😉 If you could show me where it is actual church doctrine that he was white and had blue eyes, I'd love to see that 🙂

      November 2, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  11. Occupy the Media

    Hmm. A Mormon PR campaign before a Mormon is soon to be named a Republican presidential nominee. I wonder if there's a correlation. Anyone know where Karl Rove was during the filming of this propaganda?

    November 2, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
  12. waycist

    They should be promoting their whiteness rather than distancing themselves from it.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • Leroy McMath

      you must not have gotten the memo from the smurfs and divine aliens......

      BLACK PEOPLE ARE OK WITH THE MORMANS NOW!!!!!!

      It was all a huge misunderstanding. (and it looks kind of bad to be racist.)

      November 2, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
  13. Skeptical

    This story is misleading. In 1978, the Mormon church allowed African Americans to join the priesthood. However, currently African Americans can go no higher than the certain office. The Mormon church still discriminates against African Americans and would never allow an African American into its leadership. It is also funny, how in the Mormon church God only talks to these, "lily white" men. The so-called prophets/presidents of the church. If any African American wants to join the church then that is their right as an American. In the Bible, God stated, "It is written". He did not write, "It is written and I will tell John Smith and Brigham young the rest".
    I applaud the Mormon church in trying to diversify their membership, but I think they have a long way to rid themselves of the racist perception that sits with their church.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:56 pm |
    • Mormon Academic

      Helvecio Martins, Joseph Sitati and other men of color who have reached the highest levels of LDS Church leadership salute you!

      November 2, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
    • grim

      What are you talking about – do you have 1st person knowledge or just idiotic ramblings.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
    • Lars J

      You're right – this whole public relations effort may eventually implode for one outstanding reason: if enough interest is created, the average American may actually pay attention to the small print in Mormon theology. That will not be good because while most Americans know little about even their own faiths, they will intrinsically know that the occult-like ideas about death, reincarnation (its not called this but it is essentially their belief), sin and grace, et al will mystify and trouble most. The best relationship the Church can have with Americans is arms length where little is actually know about the Church's theology.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
    • anothersmith

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jonestown

      November 2, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
    • Tim

      Not true. Joseph W. Sitati is black and a "general authority"–one of the highest levels of leadership in the LDS church–and he's not the first black general authority in the LDS church. There are also blacks in other leadership positions–bishops (who oversee congregations) and stake presidents (who oversee groups of congregations).

      November 2, 2011 at 4:11 pm |
    • Mormon in Atlanta

      Your post is completely untrue. Many African Americans hold callings throughout the church. Here in Atlanta, what would be considered the highest calling (Stake President – the leader who is called to preside over all the Wards in the Atlanta area) is African American. Race is not a determining factor whatsoever.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
    • Brian

      Skeptical is the one who is misleading. The LDS Church currently has a General Authority from Kenya named Elder Joseph W. Sitati. They've had other General authorities of African descent in recent years as well. These men are called by the Church leadership through prayer and revelation. If God chooses a man of African descent as an Apostle in the LDS Church, I will be thrilled and gladly sustain him. So will nearly every Mormon across the world. Color means nothing in the LDS Church. We're all God's children.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:18 pm |
    • Stephen

      Simply not true. A man of any race has the same opportunity the in LDS church.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
    • Lars J

      Regarding blacks in leadership, the Church has been anxious to fix this "problem". But history is a harsh reality for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. What can't be denied is that the Church got "religion" on the civil rights issue only when it was clear that the country was changing drastically on the issue. For generations the Church was openly discriminatory about it. The Mormon Scriptures teach the God is changeless and His word is eternal. But the Church found a way for God to "change His mind" on this. The more you know about it, the more superficial are their teachings.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:31 pm |
  14. Robert Kent

    Why do theists believe they have a monopoly on the afterlife? Google "Simulated Reality" and "Quantum Archaeology".

    November 2, 2011 at 3:56 pm |
    • Fred

      Do you have a brother named Clark, born in Smallville and moved to Metropolis?

      November 2, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
  15. Mike

    My name is Mike and I'm NOT a Mormon! I'm an ATHEIST. BITE ON THAT, MORMONS!

    November 2, 2011 at 3:55 pm |
    • Leroy McMath

      You get no magic panties.

      November 2, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • Collin

      Wow, I am amazed at the intellectual power of your comment. I am so ashamed now of my beliefs and bow before your superior brain. (eye-roll).

      November 2, 2011 at 3:58 pm |
    • anothersmith

      Athiest agnostic of the blue folded hats clan are far more righteous.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
  16. Liberty427

    I had a very good job which I have no more because my boss was one of these a ss wipes. I didn't buy into their spiritual underware and all the rest of the crap that goes with this church. From that point on I was unworthy.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:55 pm |
    • heeler

      Perhaps referring to your employers religion as "underwear," and "crap" is what got you canned.....Nobody likes being discriminated against, and it sounds like you aren't the most open hearted person. I've had plenty of mormon friends, and one mormon boss, all of whom respected my choice not to join the club.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
    • anothersmith

      My "former" boss was a mormon as well. I bet he heard one of my jokes about how morons are mormons. Definitely one of the 144,000 types. Makes me wish there was a hell.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
  17. MJ_4FL

    If people/public would spend half the amount of time researching the truths of the LDS Church and truely what it stands for as they do bad mouthing the church or researching ANTI-MORMON litature, their mouths and posts would stop cause they know they would be wrong!! Visit mormon.org....... get the facts!!!

    November 2, 2011 at 3:55 pm |
    • bananaspy

      Same story from every silly religion. You've actually got it backwards, the more one learns about a religion, the more absurd it seems, not the more sane.

      November 2, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • Matt

      Religion and facts are mutually exclusive.

      November 2, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • Thinkformyself

      Most that leave the Mormon church do so because of research they learned on mormon.org!

      Its all MADE UP! You might as well believe in the tooth fairy.

      November 2, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • Skeptical

      Does the Mormon church allow African Americans into the church leadership?

      November 2, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
    • JW

      More absurd.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:01 pm |
    • jnemesh

      I lived in Provo, Utah for 4 years, had a Mormon girlfriend, let the missionaries and the bishop come over to talk, and attended services. I KNOW this "religion" is full of it...I have seen it, I have lived it. I have actually read the Book of Mormon. I know everything I need to about this cult...ahem, religion. Ask your Mormon friends about how the Book of Mormon came to be sometime...its entertaining to say the least!

      November 2, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
    • anothersmith

      Oh ye of such brainwashedestness. Mormonism is a cult. Book of Morons is more to the truth and trash novel at best.
      People will believe ANYTHING. Stupid 144k believer.
      You too can be a member–> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jonestown

      November 2, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
    • Howard

      But you discriminate against my people and openly so. Sorry, but it is true. I would have no problem with you and yours if you kept your damn laws off my body and out of my family affairs.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  18. Ray

    Mormons believe god was human and now lives on planet KOLOB with his many wives. they believe that if you are a good mormon, you too will be a god and have your own planet to god over......

    November 2, 2011 at 3:55 pm |
    • XenuRulerOfTheUniverse

      Kolob? I think I visited there once on the Battlestar Galactica, right after taking over Alpha Centari on my way to Earth.

      November 2, 2011 at 3:56 pm |
    • anothersmith

      ...so, you're saying smith was a follower of mohammad?...another moron.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:11 pm |
    • eric

      First of all, that's not official doctrine, and is not pertinent to anyone's salvation. It's speculative stuff. A Mormon could go through a long life of active membership in the church, never care about "Kolob" and still be good and worthy, according to their doctrine. Second of all, those that have speculated about this have said that Kolob is actually the star nearest to where God "lives." Not a planet, so you're actually not accurate, even in your misleading comment. There's a lot about the universe we don't know. Mormons will be the first to admit that. Would you?

      November 2, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
    • ArmyCBTEngr

      Mormons believe that god was a human and now lives on planet Kolob with his many wives. they teach that if you are a good mormon, you will be a god and given your own planet to rule over in the "celestial kingdom" this is a FAR cry from Christian teachings and beliefs.

      Actually we believe that Christ did indeed live on the earth and while he is a God- he created everything including Heaven and Earth while also dying for the sins of man, we believe he, the Lord and Holy Ghost are two distinct beings that are unified in purpose which is to bring the gift of eternal happiness to those who hearken to the teachings of Christ.

      Also, I don't know anything concerning Christs wife and I'm not sure where you heard that we believe him to be a polygamist.

      As far as becoming like God, we believe him to be our Father in Heaven and therefore, being his children, we have the opportunity to be like him.

      Anyways have a good one.

      November 2, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
  19. Sean

    I am not a fan of their religion or fan of Romney. I have no love for a president that rides in the same cart with their religion. Mormons and the rest of the nation seeing eye to eye and voting Romney in? Doubtful at best, the south will never vote him in.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:55 pm |
  20. government cheese

    Lily white? Is it OK to say midnight black?

    November 2, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
    • hmmwaitasec

      and that my friend, is the real question!!!

      November 2, 2011 at 4:01 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39
Advertisement
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.