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April 7th, 2012
08:48 AM ET

Taking a rare tour of a Mormon temple

By Eric Marrapodi and Brian Todd, CNN

Kansas City, Missouri (CNN) – Elder William Walker slipped white booties over his black wing-tip shoes and instructed his guests to do the same as he led them into the newest Mormon temple in the world.

This day was the first chance the public had to see inside the sacred space for the area’s 49,000 Mormons, and it was also one of the last.

On May 6, when Thomas S. Monson, the head of the 14 million member Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, dedicates this temple, the doors will close forever to the public. The church said it expects as many as 100,000 visitors in Kansas City before the temple will be closed to the public.

After that, only temple-recommended Mormons will be able to walk through the heavy wooden and stained-glass doors.

“This is a sacred space, set apart place for only those who are devout followers of the faith,” Walker said.

For Mormons, temples serve as places of contemplation, instruction and worship experiences, like weddings and posthumous baptisms.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

The 67-year-old Walker is the executive director of the Temple Department, and he is the point man for the church’s 137 temples.

Walker is a top official in the LDS church as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy and he reports directly to Monson. The Canadian-born hockey fanatic has been a lifelong member of the church. He graduated from Brigham Young University, served a Mormon mission to Japan and spent time in the private sector working in securities and investment banking before being called to serve the church full-time in 2002.

Kansas City’s temple is the latest to open. The church has announced it will build 29 temples across five continents. Construction is under way in Paris and Rome, and temples are planned for Peru and South Africa.

“We’re building temples where the church is grown and have a concentration of members,” he said.

Outside the new Mormon temple in Kansas City, Missouri.

Inside the temple the required first stop is the Recommend Desk. After the dedication, only Mormons who have a recommend card are able to enter and participate in worship. The personalized cards are given by local church leaders to adherents who profess to be living in accordance with church teachings.

As he explained the process, Walker reached into his wallet, pushed his Utah driver’s license aside and pulled out his recommend card, which was endorsed by Monson, his bishop. Walker said his credit-card-sized recommend card, like all others, is only good for two years.

CNN was invited by church officials to tour the temple with Walker before its dedication. The church denied CNN's request to film inside the space, saying it was against church policy. The LDS church provided still images after the tour, which accurately depicted key parts of the temple. In a rare move, CNN was permitted to film inside the front of the temple at the Recommend Desk, but no farther.

"It's not about secret. It's about sacred,” Walker said after the tour, making what the church sees as a key distinction. “We feel that it's a very sacred and special place and therefore it is reserved for those worship functions and those ordinances that take place in the temple. It's not about secret."

Walker said the policy is not unlike that for Shinto shrines in Japan, where he served his mission.

But it's a thin line between sacred and secret. Public tours of the temple are only available when they are first built or undergo massive renovations. After that, outsiders and Mormons who are not temple recommended are kept out, even from wedding ceremonies.

In the sealing room, where eternal weddings take place, Walker points out the altar at the center of the room. The bride and groom kneel facing each other and the officiant stands off to the side. The room is richly decorated with Swarovski crystal chandeliers and massive gilded mirrors on either side of the room, and Walker raves about the design on the white carpet, carefully explaining how local artisans cut the meticulous pattern by hand.

Despite the grand size of the building, each room is small: This is the biggest of the three sealing rooms, and its capacity is just 49 people.

Guests are welcome at Sunday worship at one of the church’s 18,000 meeting houses, Walker is quick to note. The temple, he observes, “is a sacred, special place that’s unique. There are only 137 of these temples in all the world.”

The temple also contains a gleaming baptismal font. Though it’s a point of pride for Mormons, it has been controversial elsewhere. A church ceremony called “proxy baptisms” by Mormons includes posthumous baptisms of Jews, some of whom have protested the practice.

The baptismal font at the newest Mormon temple.

However, in Mormon doctrine, baptism is essential for salvation. While converts to the faith are baptized in services at local wards, the weekly meeting place for services open to the public, proxy baptisms take place only in the temple and in private.

The proxy baptisms are supposed to be for Mormons’ ancestors who were not of the faith. Walker said the baptism serves as an invitation to accept Mormonism as an avenue into heaven.

Explainer: How and why do Mormons baptize the dead?

At the temple, Walker took his visitors through the process as it is supposed to work.

The font rests on 12 oxen, which he said represent the tribes of Israel.

Adherents change into white gowns he jokingly referred to as "jumpsuits," provided by the temple. A male priest leads the proxy into the waist-high water, gives the blessing and the name of the ancestor, then the proxy is lowered into the water, fully immersed, then brought up to the surface. The desk next to the font has a small monitor and a light. That person's job is to record the act for the church's central database.

When the temple begins operation, Walker said, this is a scene that will play out “hundreds of times a day.”

But some Mormons have used the church’s extensive genealogy database to baptize others who are not Mormon ancestors, such as the murdered Jewish reporter Daniel Pearl and holocaust victims like Anne Frank. It’s a practice that has outraged Jewish leaders.

“When people violate the church policy of doing baptisms for those who our leaders have said we’re not going to do that, they’re acting on their own in contradiction of church policy,” he said. “We’re unhappy about that. We love our Jewish friends. We don’t want to offend them or anyone else by our religious practices.”

“We’re sorry. We live by our word and when we say we’re going to do something, we’re going to try and do it,” Walker said.

He promised disciplinary action.

“We’re now tracking those who’ve done this contrary to church policy and we’re going to shut down their access to the church’s database, Family Search, so they can’t do this.”

He acknowledges interest in proxy baptisms, and other Mormon practices, has spiked thanks to Mormon Mitt Romney’s run for president.

While the church takes no position on party politics nor allows its officials to endorse candidates, Walker can see some good coming out of Romney's run for the White House.

“I think it’s perfectly understandable people who are considering him would want to know more about the church he espouses,” he said. “In many ways it may be a good thing that people will want to know more. Maybe some of the old ideas about the church that have persisted in American culture can change.”

Watch The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer weekdays at 4pm to 6pm ET and Saturdays at 6pm ET. For the latest from The Situation Room click here.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Belief • Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints • Content Partner • Faith Now • TV-The Situation Room

soundoff (4,366 Responses)
  1. biologixco

    Dont be a fool.
    Would YOU buy Kool-Aid from Jim Jones? NO!
    Check out EXmormon.org for an INDEPENDENT analysis of the mormon cult

    April 13, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
    • Denise

      Jones Kool-aid, virgin birth, talking snakes -fraud and nonsense, all of it.

      April 13, 2012 at 5:56 pm |
    • dcsouthgw

      Mormons are replying not because we like to argue with you, (while your comments and poetry have made me smile), but because we just want innocent passers-by to be able to see a reasonable response to your unfounded claims about mormonism. Keep up the poetry though...I might make a book of it and send you a rough draft.

      April 13, 2012 at 6:06 pm |
  2. kolobian brainwasher

    Come to my temple.
    Come close my pretties!
    Help! They've got me!
    Ahh hahahahahahahah
    God save us!

    April 13, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
    • dcsouthgw

      I have been reading your posts and I find it funny in most where you seem to be mocking Mormons and then in other you claim to be friends to us. It seems a bit disingenuous. On a side note, do you have an anit- mormon poetry book or are you just making it up on the fly, because you are pretty good.

      April 13, 2012 at 5:33 pm |
  3. no kolob for me thanks

    As an EX mormon.
    I have to thank God for only one thing.
    Freeing me from the bondage of mormonism and allowing me to believe in MYSELF
    Thank you God

    April 13, 2012 at 5:15 pm |
    • snarkylou

      We didn't want you anyway.
      Don't let the door hit you in the butt

      April 13, 2012 at 5:18 pm |
    • no kolob for me thanks

      Now there's the real mormon love...

      April 13, 2012 at 5:19 pm |
  4. biologixco

    Just go to exmormon.org for more info.

    April 13, 2012 at 5:02 pm |
    • Bender Armand

      I often find myself looking at these religious articles, mostly just to see the comments at the bottom. I am Christian, but that doesn't mean that I hate other faiths, races or nationalities. If I expect people to respect my beliefs, then I feel that I need to respect theirs, no matter if it aligns with my beliefs or not. Does this have limitations? I guess so, for example I don't condone organizations such as the KKK, even if they believe they are simply acting according to their faith. In that sense I agree that I am a hypocrite, but perhaps I will not be condemned for such a view, seeing as my thinking follows the human rights idea of "all created equal" and that every man has the right to "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" (or property if you follow the original quotation, ha ha!) Back to my main concern: as viciously as religious fanatics attack those who choose to not believe, we find that the self proclaimed atheists bite back in similar kind, both parties creating a battle ground where there is no "victor" and no one can walk away without being hurt or perhaps hurting another human being. One would hope that the true "fruits" or "proofs" of religion would be found in the actions and characters of those who follow. I would also hope that those who follow the guidance of current secular understanding would be judged in a similar fashion: are they decent human beings? In the end, why should a fellow Christian hate me? Am I not a fellow brother, a child of God along with them? Or why should a Jew hate me? Am I not simply a Gentile that is trying to follow the law according to my understanding? And what of Atheists? Am I not just a fellow hairless monkey, trying to survive along with them? As I see it, every human being deserves a measure of respect.

      April 13, 2012 at 5:08 pm |
    • no kolob for me thanks

      Hairless monkeY?
      Say WHAT>?
      Too many spin cycles in that brain washer buddy

      April 13, 2012 at 5:12 pm |
    • Denise

      Bender, try getting further along with understanding evolution before commenting sideways about it. Right now, you are just showing the smart folks how ignorant you are. And you are pretty fscking ignorant.

      April 13, 2012 at 5:54 pm |
  5. heguido

    "Can you spell H Y P O C R I S Y?"
    No, you are doing it pretty well. ;-)

    April 13, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
  6. Barry G.

    The Jesus we serve taught that it would be easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle, than for a rich person to enter the knigdom of heaven.

    What do you in the LDS believe about the pursuit of wealth and greed?

    Again Jesus taught: Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. But woe to you who are rich, for you have received your reward. (See: The Gospel of Luke; The Sermon on the Plain.)

    Again the Jesus we serve taught that no person can serve two masters, one either serves God or they serve their own selfish desires, by the pursuit of wealth.

    April 13, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @Barry G.

      I always wondered what it would cost to make a really huge needle...

      April 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • heguido

      A good disciple should be willing to leave everything to follow Christ, when He requires it. This is the concept of "consecration", which must not be confused with a "vow of poverty".
      As a matter of fact, the concept of "consecration" is very related to the Temples, so I invite you to keep on investigating The Church of Jesus Christ.

      April 13, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • Barry G.

      heguido,

      I don't recall Jesus, the Apostle Paul, James or any other New Testament writer stating that this was a suggestion. They are all clear about the corruptive influence of wealth and the pursuit thereof.

      Jesus taught his disciples to pray: Give us this day our daily bread.

      Paul wrote: We brought nothing into this world, and we will bring nothing with us when we leave.

      The Old Testament figure, Job(e) said: Naked I came into the world, and naked I shall leave.

      Finally Jesus taught: What does it profit a man or a woman if they gain the whole world, yet lose their soul!? Or what shall a person give in exchange for their soul?

      When Christianity became legal in 315 CE, many of the faithful saw this as a threat to their salvation. Jesus taught that they must be suffering servants and that they must deny themselves, take up their crosses and follow him.

      When the emperor Constantine embraced Christianity and protected its followers, they were no longer persecuted and began living lives of comfort, privilege and wealth. Many saw this as a threat to their very salvation, so they departetd from the comforts of society and moved out into the deserts. This began the monastic movements.

      From this point forward, many became who remained in society became pseudo or nominal Christians, and sadly this is still true today.

      Jesus said: Not everyone who calls me Lord will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only those that do the will of my father in heaven.

      Jesus also taught that few would be saved.

      Many sa

      April 13, 2012 at 2:39 pm |
    • heguido

      I didn't say it was a "suggestion"... Is a commandment.
      Please read carefully next time.
      Confusing "Consecration" and "Vow of Poverty" is like confusing "Give your life for Christ" and "Suicide". One thing is to be willing, another is to have to do it.
      The issue here is that if you love wealth more than you love God you are in problems.

      April 13, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
    • Nonimus

      Just out of curiosity, what is the concept of "Consecration" based on? i.e. how is it derived / where is it found?

      April 13, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
    • Phil Ollero

      "we can not serve God and mammon" Mammon means the world. Jesus said "seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and these shall be added unto you". As long as we put God ahead of worldly things , he will give us what we need. And of course pursuing our desiires righteously. It has been said that money is the root of all evil but the real quote is this: the love of money is the root of all evil. God wants all of us to be happy and if the pursuit of richess makes us happy, as long as we are honest with our dealings, it's alright with him.

      April 13, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
    • Stephanie

      By the way people, the "Eye of the Needle"referred to the name of a gate in the wall around the city of Jerusalem. It was relatively small compared to other gates or entrances into the city and it did not allow for many camels to enter side by side. Only 1 camel at a time could go through and if it was heavily laden, it would be difficult. Its not being wealthy that is the sin, it is the LOVE or LUST for wealth that is the sin. Many people are so caught up in what wealth provides them that they lose sight of the good wealth can do. That being said, there are also many people who make a lifestudy of poverty. Who allow their families to live on the edge of disaster because they don't want to work or they prefer to live off others. What does your religion say about that?

      April 13, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
    • Joshua

      Barry, your analysis is well taken, but coming from a religious tradition that also builds beautiful churches (Roman Catholic), I have to interject this. In exodus God makes very elaborate requests for his temple. The church is God's house, and according to David's analysis should be greater than our homes. A Jewish interpretation might suggest that God only wants the one temple, but that is a different argument.

      Furthermore, Jesus never suggested the Christian community should be poor. In Acts we see the followers of Christ giving of what they have to the group. I don't see how the group holding wealth is in violation of Christ's intend.

      April 13, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
    • Nonimus

      "God wants all of us to be happy and if the pursuit of richess makes us happy, as long as we are honest with our dealings, it's alright with him."

      Well, first time I've heard it put that way. How does that fit with Luke 16:19–31 and whole rich man getting into heaven thing?

      April 13, 2012 at 4:43 pm |
    • dcsouthgw

      If we are seeking first for the kingdom, then God is adding the money and what God has added cannot be evil. Lots of prophets from the OT were very wealthy, because they were added unto by God. I still don't understand why we straining at a gnat here. It is a pretty straight forward commandment. Just because you have some money doesn't mean that you sought for it.

      April 13, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
  7. Luke

    Be careful biologixco, sounds like you got the gander of the mormon faithful
    You might get a one-way ticket to Planet Kolob if you aren't careful
    Wah hahahahah

    April 13, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
    • heguido

      Don't worry, he refuses to be "chosen". ;-)

      April 13, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
    • biologixco

      Chosen?
      For a one way ride to the fiery lake?
      One more time:
      There is ONE God
      There is ONE Word of God
      And its not the book of mormon
      Now go cast that stone into the fiery lake you are about to live in.
      And you know in your heart that is true.

      April 13, 2012 at 1:01 pm |
    • heguido

      biologixco,

      And why do you believe in the Bible? I hope that your answer is not "Because the Bible says that the Bible is true".
      I do hope that it is because what it teaches, and how do you feel while you read it, and what happens in your life when you follow its teachings...
      Well, at least, those are the reasons why I believe in the Bible. Of course, those same reasons make me believe in The Book of Mormon.

      April 13, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
  8. Sarah

    Thanks Biologixco for your wisdom
    You are obviously a wise person who believes in what they say
    I was going to go with friends to that new temple
    But thanks to your word of wisdom, I've decided not to go
    You might have just saved at least one person

    April 13, 2012 at 12:37 pm |
    • biologixco

      Thanks Sarah,
      Glad someone out there can think for them self
      You can find God in your own heart and your own house without joining ANY religion.
      You dont have to "beat the bible" to be a good, morally upstanding person.
      Visit an Evangelical or Baptist church.
      There you will find friends that can clarify the meaning of what I say.
      But God forbid
      Stay away from cults!

      April 13, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • Stephanie

      Your decision is your decision. The temple is a beautiful building, like many buildings of other religions the believers of that faith show their love for God by building a beautiful place to comune with God and to honor God. Ever seen a Catholic Cathedral? Ever seen a large Jewish Temple? Ever seen the Crystal Cathedral? Ever seen the large Baptist mega churches in the South? No different than the LDS church wanting a beautiful place to get closer to God. Am I LDS? No, but the true believers of that church are very family oriented, kind and do not force others to believe as they do. If you believe in hour heart what the LDS preach-become LDS. If you believe in the Catholic, Jewish, or any other faith's message or rules about God-then join them. Believe however you want, but give everyone else the same choice.

      April 13, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
  9. biologixco

    Lies and deception are provinance of a cult.
    Since Heguido's vocabulary is a little limited...
    Provanance: The place of origin or earliest known history of something
    Read about Joseph Smith, Kolob and Magic underwear.
    But HINT: DONT look in the Bible for these terms.
    You won't find them.
    And THAT is what makes mormonism blasphemy!
    Got a comeback for that one?
    You can't fool Americans. A proud and pragmatic people they are...
    Thanks Heguido. You've convinced me to stay until this blog officially ends.
    woo hoo!

    April 13, 2012 at 12:29 pm |
    • heguido

      You said you were leaving, but you are here. Why am I not surprised?
      As I said before, you are indeed doing God's work, but not exactly in the way you think. Now there are scores of people investigating "mormonism". And that's awesome!
      Good to have you back, brother.

      April 13, 2012 at 12:44 pm |
    • biologixco

      Your argument about good and evil prompted me to stay.
      To let you have the final word on that would be capitulation
      Thanks

      April 13, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • heguido

      As far as I know there are some other words not included in the bible: Catholic Church, Methodist Church... First Baptist Church...
      I'm afraid to further with your way of reasoning...
      You must know that the Bible is a compilation of sacred text, and it even mentions some other sacred books we can't find in it. What would we do if we find them? Accept the Bible saying that they are sacred texts, and therefore include them? Or call the Bible blasphemous for modifying... itself?
      You must also know that the Bible shows the importance of Prophets, Apostles, Angelic visitors, and Revelation from Heaven...
      But, as I said, there is really only one way to know if something comes from God. Asking Him.

      April 13, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
    • Stephanie

      It amazes me how ignorant people can be. You believe word for word in a bible that was written a couple hundred years AFTER the death of Christ, and translated from Arabic or Greek to English by basically ignorant monks. You belittle the beliefs of people who don't believe exactly as you do even though they are kind, loving people just like the people in your church. If we all stopped belittling people who don't believe like we do and spend more time behaving as Jesus preached maybe we would all be better off. When Christians stop insulting each other, when we stop stealing or taking what does not belong to us; when we stop lying and cheating; when we stop gossiping and tearing each other down to make ourselves look more important or smarter; when we stop putting people beneath us because they believe a little differently-then we can say we are true children of God.

      April 13, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • Joshua

      Stephanie:

      Modern scholarship suggests the whole of he new testament was written within 100 years of Jesus' death. Though admittedly some works like the gospel of John and Revelations were likely in the early 2nd century. Some books, like Matthew and Mark are almost definitely first hand accounts of Jesus' life. Even the gospel of John, though as stated completed later was likely expanded from an earlier version, actually written by the John that knew Jesus.

      That is a lot of first hand written books about a historical figure of that period. As they have been put together in an anthology (the New Testament) they might appear to a lay person to be a single source, but they are multiple independent works by multiple authors.

      April 13, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
      • biologixco

        And conversely,
        the book of mormon was written LESS THAN 100 years ago!

        April 13, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
  10. heguido

    There's an old dated battle between Good and Evil, and the prize is the soul of God's children. The enemy's favourite battleground is the human mind. There he can use his long experienced weapons: Mockery, Lie, Deception... But there is a fortress whithin each of God's children that he can't reah, no matter how hard he tries, nor how loud he granhes his teeth. is the human heart.
    People recognize the true of the teaching of The Church of Jesus Christ not because of the "reasons", but because of what they "feel" when they hear the truth.
    Those who read The book of Mormon with a sincere intention, ponder about it, and ask the Lord about it's truth, do recieve His answer directly to their hearts. He, and only He commanded ancient prophets to write it, and a modern prophet to translate it for us to have it. There are millons of witnesses how gladly testify about it.

    April 13, 2012 at 11:28 am |
    • Luke

      Mormonism is a meatgrinder of people's souls
      Want to live in a fiery lake in the afterlife?
      Stay away.
      You were warned

      April 13, 2012 at 12:43 pm |
    • Luke

      Commanded ancient prophets to write it?
      Holy smokes, Batman.
      I smell a LIE!
      Joseph Smith was the originator of this mormom nonsense around 1820.
      Thats not ancient and thats NOT GOSPEL.
      Can we believe anything you say?

      April 13, 2012 at 12:48 pm |
    • heguido

      "Mockery, Lie, Deception... and FEAR!"
      Thanks for the reminder, brother biologixco!

      April 13, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
    • heguido

      Oh, my mistake... It was brother Luke! ;-)

      April 13, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
  11. biologixco

    Dearest misguided mormon brother Heguido:
    When one reads the obfucated responses the mormon robots have been programmed to give, a singular truth reveals itself.
    Mormonism is a cult and not a religion. (GASP!)
    And since big words like "OBFUCATION" and "CULT" might be outside your level of vocabulary, here is a little added info.

    OBFUCATION: To totally obscure with non-germane information in a verbose manner, with the intent to provide a non-answer, and provide total befuddlement. (im smiling, cuz that hits you like a hammer on nail)

    CULT: A relatively small group of people having religious beliefs or practices regarded by others as strange or sinister.

    Strange?Like Planet Kolob and Magical underwear?
    Cat's out of the bag, folks!

    April 13, 2012 at 10:49 am |
    • biologixco

      And with that dear friends,
      Im leaving this blog. Its getting stale.
      Mormons may cheer my departure, but I hold no grudge against my mormon friends.
      I spoke the Truth to the best of my abilities.
      And IF I was to prevent just ONE person from joining mormonism
      God shall smile upon me.
      Thank you.

      April 13, 2012 at 11:12 am |
    • dcsouthgw

      You are really fixated on Kolob and "magic underwear". One is just a planet somewhere in the universe that Abraham was told about and the other refers to temple garments that members who attend the temple wear. I am not sure why you think they are magic since mine are made out of poly cotton. You can even get them in silk. Hanes would probably do just as well for you though. I'll even say a prayer over them for you.

      April 13, 2012 at 5:47 pm |
      • biologixco

        They are magic cuz Joseph Smith told you so.
        Not because I said so.
        Poly cotton is good though.
        You'll want something to absorb all that perspiration.
        It gets hot when you get close to that fiery lake.
        (wink)

        April 13, 2012 at 6:06 pm |
    • Denise

      All religions are cults, pretty much. Funny how many Christian sects there are though, with each one claiming that its particular brand of bizarre myths is for real. Crazy stuff, what religious fools fall for.

      April 13, 2012 at 5:49 pm |
    • dcsouthgw

      Mr. Biologixco: again if find myself asking you for sources. Please show me where Joseph Smith called temple garments magic. I feel like a broken record, and yet you still don't know how to validate your statements. I guess you really don't care if anyone believes you.

      April 15, 2012 at 3:49 am |
  12. heguido

    It is very interesting to see History repeating itself.
    The first "angry" commentaries on this article were paraphrases of:
    "Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?"
    Although the "Mormon" church is highly involved in humanitarian efforts, and the caring of the poor (Just google "LDS Humanitarian") some people tend to (actively) ignore it as they try to portrait the church as frivolous and a money waster.
    Members of the church all around the world willingly fast a whole day each month, and donate the money they save by doing this (and often a lot more) to take care of the poor.
    Not only that, believing in God's admonition to Malachi they pay theyannual t ithes, and they feel privileged to do so. Certainly, as promised, "the windows of heaven" are opened for them " and "a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it" is poured out for them.
    Members are also involved in many "service activities" throughout the year, helping their communities, and even other religious denominations (Like the First Southern Baptist Church of Bountiful) to build their own chapels, or take care of the existing ones.
    Temples now, as those of old, are build to be "The House of the Lord", so "mormons" put their best in building them, just like the israelites in the days of old.
    Finally, everybody is invited to enter. Thousands of young and adult members of the church go to "every corner of the world", at their own expenses, serving missions to invite all people to enter the Temples.
    Do you want to know what it requires to enter? Just ask a missionary or a "mormon" friend.

    April 13, 2012 at 8:14 am |
    • biologixco

      Blah blah blah.
      There is one simple truth:
      There is only ONE God
      There is only ONE Word of God.
      The Bible.
      Not the quran.
      Not Dianetics.
      CERTAINLY NOT THE BOOK of MORMON.
      Its blasphemy!
      How on God's Green Earth, if you are really Christian, can you dispute THAT?
      You KNOW I speak the truth here.
      Repent dear brothers of your misguided ways.
      I beg of you.
      Have a great and pleasant Spring day!

      April 13, 2012 at 10:57 am |
    • Denise

      biononlogico: There are No True Scotsmen. Dig it?

      April 13, 2012 at 5:51 pm |
    • Denise

      My dog's better than your dog.

      April 13, 2012 at 5:52 pm |
  13. Dave

    What is very interesting about mormons is how they treat history like a lump of clay.
    Heguido is a master of this technique.
    If it doesnt just fit to portray mormonism in a positive light, they mold it and assauge it to make it
    fit their need. I have a few questions about mormonism, but I can't find answers at LDS.org or mormon.org. And when Ive seen similar questions here, the mormons have deflected the question with the mormon sidestep, or simply dismissed the questioner with ridicule. Biologixco has asked some excellent questions, but you treat him like an ugly stepchild and don't answer him directly. It makes you guys look wishy washy.

    April 12, 2012 at 11:15 pm |
    • heguido

      You have many questions, like: "Wonder how many virgin wives they had to auction off to afford it?"

      Gimme a break!

      April 13, 2012 at 6:41 am |
    • Kev

      History in of itself tends to be spun like a lump of clay. Latter-Day-Saints spin it one way, others like biologixco spin it another way. It can also be said that if anything about the LDS is seen in a positive light that others like biologixco will mold it and shape it to fit their interests. It may be good then to get a more holostic view of things. It's also good to experience to find out as well. As Socrates would put it that to know the good is to do the good, and as Latter-Day-Saints put it to not just beleive it, but find out for yourself, and even pray about it.

      April 13, 2012 at 7:04 am |
    • dcsouthgw

      It is hard to defend something when he provides no context, sources, etc. He can make any statement he wants.

      April 13, 2012 at 8:31 am |
  14. JohnnyAnonymous

    While I am personally of the opinion that religion is a complete work of fiction, I must say they do make a very nice looking temple.

    April 12, 2012 at 10:45 pm |
    • Dave

      It is a beauty.
      Wonder how many virgin wives they had to auction off to afford it?

      April 12, 2012 at 11:06 pm |
  15. biologixco

    Is a candidate’s religion relevant?
    With a startling 50 percent increase of recently polled American voters claiming to know little or nothing about Mormonism, another 32 percent rejecting Mormonism as a Christian faith, a whopping 42 percent saying they would feel “somewhat or very uncomfortable” with a Mormon president, and a widespread sense that the religion is a cult, the issue is clearly more complicated than religious bigotry alone.
    Let me digress:
    32% of American voters reject mormons OUTRIGHT (haha a full 1/3!)
    42% of American voters and UNCOMFORTABLE with a mormon leader (whoa!)
    Americans got your number.
    And when they discover more about Planet Kolob, Magic Underwear and the White Horse Prophesy,
    We will prevent the mormon White Horse Prophesy from becoming reality.
    Say NO to ROMNEY 2012!

    April 12, 2012 at 10:11 pm |
    • dcsouthgw

      dan birdsong wrote this on this very site, "In June, a Gallup Poll found that only 76% of Americans would vote for a Mormon. The Pew Center found that while 68% say being a Mormon wouldn’t matter to their vote, 25% say they would be less likely to vote for a Mormon candidate."
      See how easy it is to find evidence if you look for it. Sources are important.

      April 13, 2012 at 6:46 pm |
  16. biologixco

    Furthermore, my mormon friends,
    Despite a solemn stricture against any act or tolerance of gambling, Mormons have been heavily invested and exceptionally influential in the Nevada gaming industry since the great expansion of modern Las Vegas in the 1950s.
    Explain that one my friends.

    April 12, 2012 at 9:51 pm |
    • biologixco

      Can you spell H Y P O C R I S Y?

      April 12, 2012 at 9:53 pm |
    • dcsouthgw

      You need to cite your sources. You are just making statements, allegations about what the church/Joseph Smith said and none of which I have ever heard of before, so they must be really out there. Start by stating who is making the claim and where they got their information from and please don't just say go to exmormon.org. They are not a source, but report the alleged stories that come from alleged sources.

      April 13, 2012 at 8:30 am |
    • biologixco

      The veracity of the article this statement came from can be verified.
      The article was very recently written by Sally Denton.
      http://www.salon.com/2012/01/29/mitt_and_the_white_horse_prophecy/singleton/
      Lets see, now the mormon robots will come back with a counter attack.
      Like. Salon HATES Mormons
      Salon? Who's THAT?
      Sally Denton just hates us and says everthing mean about us.
      The White Horse Prophesy was rejected by the church (But mormons secretly, quietly maintain the cause internally)
      People throw mud at you and it sticks, but you throw flour back in their face in return.
      People are on to this mormon 2 step.
      VOTE NO MITT ROMNEY 2012
      Its one of the prime signitures of a cult.

      April 13, 2012 at 10:21 am |
    • biologixco

      Here is a quote of mormon mumbo jumbo:
      “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is opposed to gambling, including lotteries sponsored by governments,” the church states on its website. “Church leaders have encouraged Church members to join with others in opposing the legalization and government sponsorship of any form of gambling.”
      Thats a LIE.
      Try some of these articles out:
      Nevada Town Booms With Proceeds From Gambling Mormons
      Source: http://www.nytimes.com/1993/06/14/us/nevada-town-booms-with-proceeds-from-gambling-mormons.html

      Reid's unabashed support of Nevada's gaming industry - he has been derisively labeled "the Senator from [Nevada casino] Circus Circus" - has seemed to put him at odds with Mormon teachings against gambling. In 1845, LDS President Brigham Young called gambling an "abomination."
      Source: http://www.adherents.com/largecom/lds_Reid.html

      Romney faces tough decision with stance on online gaming
      source: http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2011/nov/24/romney-faces-tough-decision-online-gaming/

      Im tired of being called a liar and EVERY statement questioned.. Your "religion" is a corrupt cult.
      Obsfucation is your middle name and your very game...
      Gotcha.

      April 13, 2012 at 10:36 am |
    • heguido

      You are the first one to cry for the "mormon politicians" not to "impose" their beliefs on others, just to call them "hypocrites" when they don´t.
      I don't know, and I really don't care if that information is true or not. I don't gamble and never did, because I believe is wrong.

      April 13, 2012 at 10:44 am |
    • biologixco

      Brother Heguido:
      Your response says it all:

      "I don't know, and I really don't care if that information is true or not."

      You know Im right dont you...
      Repent your misguided ways whilst you still can.
      Your fellow Americans really DO care about you.
      Have a great day my mormon friend.

      April 13, 2012 at 11:03 am |
    • heguido

      Fellow Americans? Wrong again.

      What I meant is that those articles where (I guess) about the behaviour of some particular members of the church, and not about the doctrine of it. So, I don't care. if some "mormon" goes to a casino, that's between him and God. i made my own convenants to Him, and I only respond to Him.

      April 13, 2012 at 11:10 am |
    • dcsouthgw

      The article about gambling in Nevada/Utah border towns is like 500 words long about how this one town near Salt Lake gets "by some estimates" 90% of its gamblers from utah. It probably has something to do with proximity, but it doesn't state how they got to that number or who gave it to them. They quote one mormon woman anonymously in the article about how its a way to get away from the restrictive lifestyle. Hardly thorough, investigative journalism. Need I remind you that Salt Lake City is one of the least LDS populated utah cities per capita, like 50-60%, so its not just mormons attending. They also contend that Mormons just like any church have varying degrees of faith among their members, so there could be plenty of non practicing Mormons going there. Again, once the source is checked, it is less damning evidence.

      April 13, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
    • dcsouthgw

      I find it funny how you think you are being attacked when I am asking you to support your claims. Anyone can write anything and sound like they know what they are talking about, but completely fabricate it. The first art you cited didn't cite any of their sources and was the size of a 9th grade "What did you do over the summer" assignment. The other 2 articles are about Sen Reid and 2 or 3 other mormons in Nevada politics not coming out against gambling in a gambling state and Romney not coming out against online gambling. This amounts to 4 mormon politicians who aren't necessarily gambling themselves, but not trying to keep everyone else from doing it. Sounds like these are Mormons in politics who are exercising their free choice and not trying to force them on everyone else. I should be thanking you for painting us in such a good light.

      April 13, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
    • biologixco

      Thank you DC south for your wonderful and meticulous exercise in OBFUCATION>
      OBFUCATION: To totally obscure with non-germane information in a verbose manner, with the intent to provide a non-answer, and provide total befuddlement.

      How many times did they have to run you through the Kolobian brainwasher to get you to spit a paragraph like that out?

      April 13, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
    • dcsouthgw

      I read that article on "white horse prophecy" and am still not sure where they get the white horse part of it. The original prophecy is pretty straight forward and has nothing to do with a conspiracy. Sally, the writer is far from an objective writer. She cites her other works at the end and their all anti-mormon propoganda. Not one positive thing about the Mormons mentioned in the article, just conspiracies and many uncited claims still, which tells me you are just parroting her schpiel and not looking for the actual evidence like who actually was saying their is an inner circle in the church that thinks there will be a mormon president to save the country and when did they coronate Mitt as their guy. Alot of reputable writers and journalists have covered mormonism, try 60 minutes, 20/20, pbs series on Joseph Smith, and Larry King. These kind of journalist use what is called a balanced approach. They try to evenly discuss negative and positive parts so as not to bias the reader to their view. For all we know any one of them feel the same way about our church as you do, but they want people to come to their own conclusion and not just robotically follow their opinions.

      April 13, 2012 at 5:59 pm |
      • biologixco

        woohoo.
        antimormon propaganda
        I about spit my Cool aid on my computer monitor when I read that. You must have spun for one too many cycles in that brain washer
        hahaha

        April 13, 2012 at 6:08 pm |
    • dcsouthgw

      Mr. Biologixco: You still didn't address any of my criticisms of your sources, but just reverted to the same old brainwashing line. I gave you specific reasons why your sources were weak and all you had to do was give better proof that they weren't, like Hary Reid and Mitt Romney were closet gamblers, or that sally denton who sourced the article you cited, has ever written one balanced article about the Mormons. You could have even mentioned the reputable journalists that I mentioned who have done pieces on our church and said why they weren't reputable. It sounds like you want us to just believe your words and not worry about their veracity.

      April 15, 2012 at 3:57 am |
  17. biologixco

    Called a “militant millennial movement” by renowned Mormon historian David L. Bigler, Mormonism’s founding theology was based upon a literal takeover of the U.S. government. In light of the theology and divine prophecies of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, unamended by the LDS hierarchy, it would seem that the office of the American presidency is the ultimate ecclesiastical position to which a Mormon leader might aspire.
    We will prevent that from happening.
    VOTE NO ROMNEY 2012!

    April 12, 2012 at 9:49 pm |
  18. Muneef

    The Message;

    O Prophet, fear Allah and do not obey the disbelievers and the hypocrites. Indeed, Allah is ever Knowing and Wise. 33:1

    And follow that which is revealed to you from your Lord. Indeed Allah is ever, with what you do, Acquainted. 33:2

    And rely upon Allah ; and sufficient is Allah as Disposer of affairs. 33:3
    --

    And [mention, O Muhammad], when We took from the prophets their covenant and from you and from Noah and Abraham and Moses and Jesus, the son of Mary; and We took from them a solemn covenant. 33:7

    That He may question the truthful about their truth. And He has prepared for the disbelievers a painful punishment. 33:8
    --
    There has certainly been for you in the Messenger of Allah an excellent pattern for anyone whose hope is in Allah and the Last Day and [who] remembers Allah often. 33:21
    -–

    There is not to be upon the Prophet any discomfort concerning that which Allah has imposed upon him. [This is] the established way of Allah with those [prophets] who have passed on before. And ever is the command of Allah a destiny decreed. 33:38

    [ Allah praises] those who convey the messages of Allah and fear Him and do not fear anyone but Allah . And sufficient is Allah as Accountant. 33:39

    Muhammad is not the father of [any] one of your men, but [he is] the Messenger of Allah and last of the prophets. And ever is Allah , of all things, Knowing. 33:40

    O you who have believed, remember Allah with much remembrance 33:41

    And exalt Him morning and afternoon. 33:42

    It is He who confers blessing upon you, and His angels [ask Him to do so] that He may bring you out from darknesses into the light. And ever is He, to the believers, Merciful. 33:43

    Their greeting the Day they meet Him will be, "Peace." And He has prepared for them a noble reward. 33:44

    O Prophet, indeed We have sent you as a witness and a bringer of good tidings and a warner. 33:45

    And one who invites to Allah , by His permission, and an illuminating lamp.
    33:46

    And give good tidings to the believers that they will have from Allah great bounty. 33:47

    And do not obey the disbelievers and the hypocrites but do not harm them, and rely upon Allah . And sufficient is Allah as Disposer of affairs. 33:48
    --–

    Indeed, Allah confers blessing upon the Prophet, and His angels [ask Him to do so]. O you who have believed, ask [ Allah to confer] blessing upon him and ask [ Allah to grant him] peace. 33:56

    Indeed, those who abuse Allah and His Messenger – Allah has cursed them in this world and the Hereafter and prepared for them a humiliating punishment.
    33:57

    And those who harm believing men and believing women for [something] other than what they have earned have certainly born upon themselves a slander and manifest sin.33:58
    ---

    O you who have believed, fear Allah and speak words of appropriate justice.
    33:70
    He will [then] amend for you your deeds and forgive you your sins. And whoever obeys Allah and His Messenger has certainly attained a great attainment. 33:71

    April 12, 2012 at 7:03 pm |
    • biologixco

      Dear Muneef,
      Why do you feel the need to keep cut + pasting numerous quran quotes without ancillary information to support your point?
      We could read the quran if we wanted to, but I won't be wasting my time in that endeavor.
      Christians don't subscribe to that mumbo jumbo, so why force the issue in this blog?
      I will, however concede that the similarities to the book of mormoon and the quran are uncanny.
      Two peas in a blasphemous pod.
      Go sit in the corner until you have a real contribution to make here.
      Thank you.

      April 12, 2012 at 9:31 pm |
    • JD

      You claim you won't read the Book of Mormon or the Quran yet somehow you know they are similar and blasphemous? Your blind bigotry to religions that you know nothing about is disgraceful.

      April 13, 2012 at 12:15 pm |
    • Muneef

      And among them, [O Muhammad], are those who listen to you, until when they depart from you, they say to those who were given knowledge, "What has he said just now?" Those are the ones of whom Allah has sealed over their hearts and who have followed their [own] desires. 47:16

      And those who are guided – He increases them in guidance and gives them their righteousness. 47:17
      -–

      Then do they not reflect upon the Qur'an, or are there locks upon [their] hearts? 47:24
      -–

      So have they not traveled through the earth and have hearts by which to reason and ears by which to hear? For indeed, it is not eyes that are blinded, but blinded are the hearts which are within the breasts. 22:46

      April 13, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  19. heguido

    Terrie Lynn Bittner,
    biologixco knows all of this, it's been told to him almost a hundred times, but he chooses to ignore it. He say he is no liar, so maybe he has a very, very bad memory. And when his soul-mate is not around he answers his own comments. You get to enjoy it after a while.

    April 12, 2012 at 7:01 pm |
    • biologixco

      Heguido, the mormon LDS church is on a mission, as we speak to rewrite history regarding its checkered past.
      Now you know as well as I that the WHITE HORSE PROPHESY was not contrived out of thin air.
      And the simple fact is: Your modern contemporaries have brought the issue to the forefront. Most recently, Glenn Beck, who was fired from his show at Fox exactly because of it! . Fox KNOWS the significance of this even though they never spelled it out publicly when they FIRED him. Its a radioactive issue and they know it.
      And what about Willard (MITT) Romney?
      Romney avoids mentioning it, but Joseph Smith ran for president in 1844 as an independent commander in chief of an “army of God” advocating the overthrow of the U.S. government in favor of a Mormon-ruled theocracy. Challenging Democrat James Polk and Whig Henry Clay, Smith prophesied that if the U.S. Congress did not accede to his demands that “they shall be broken up as a government and God shall damn them.” Smith viewed capturing the presidency as part of the mission of the church.
      Now Heguido you can't dispute those facts. YOU are the LIAR!

      April 12, 2012 at 9:45 pm |
  20. biologixco

    My mind's made up, but I still can't see
    Why mad mormon followers are after me.
    Let me tell my story once again.
    MITT ROMNEY is their elder and their HIGH PRIEST
    But this man he comes with the mark of the beast!
    Let me tell my story once again.
    Secret society comes up with the White Horse Plan,
    Americans will figure out ROMNEY's NOT their man!
    But let me tell my story once again...

    April 12, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
    • Terrie Lynn Bittner

      If you research the topic, you'll learn the White Horse prophecy was denounced by the church in the 1800s. It was a fabrication of one person and after researching it, church leaders declared it false because it didn't meet the guidelines for how God presents revelation. Romney is a high priest, but most Mormon men are–it doesn't mean he has any special power or authority over the church. It's simply a level of priesthood that most older men achieve at one point or another, usually when they are called to be a bishop or a stake president, as he was. (These positions are similar to a lay pastor or head of a diocese; neither are paid positions.) Not everything you hear about Mormons is true, so it's important to go to the source. If someone were writing about you, you would want them to check the facts with you first, so lies weren't spread. Jesus taught us to treat others as we ourselves want to be treated–so check with a real Mormon first. LDS.org or Mormon.org will give you authentic information.

      April 12, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • ?

      Glen Beck was fired from Fox News because he constantly referenced the Prophecy. You Mormons realize we have access to computers, right?

      April 12, 2012 at 5:37 pm |
    • biologixco

      Please go to exmormon.org for an independent view.
      Think for yourself.
      Would you go to scientology to find out science? NO!
      Don't get sucked into a cult!
      Talk to someone who USED to be a mormon FIRST
      EXmormon.org

      April 12, 2012 at 5:38 pm |
    • huckleberryhoney

      Would you talk to someone who used to be a doctor for medical advice? Or would you go to someone who is currently practicing medicine?

      April 12, 2012 at 6:32 pm |
    • heguido

      huckleberryhoney,

      That's not a good analogy. Is like taking medical advice from a doctor that was fired for being a bad doctor.

      April 12, 2012 at 6:51 pm |
    • biologixco

      Here's a better analogy.
      You wouldn't buy Kool-aid from Jim Jones would you?
      Then you wouldnt go to LDS.org or mormon.org for an accurate INDEPENDENT assessment of mormonism.
      Now there's the PERFECT analogy, eh heguido?

      April 12, 2012 at 10:21 pm |
    • Nonimus

      Go to the Masons to get the true facts about Freemasonry!

      Oh, wait, they're not supposed to tell you, are they.

      April 13, 2012 at 2:11 pm |
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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 and Eric Marrapodi with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team.