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Businessweek’s Mormon caricature cover draws fire
The cover is a caricature of a painting that shows John the Baptist blessing Mormon leaders Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery.
July 13th, 2012
04:57 PM ET

Businessweek’s Mormon caricature cover draws fire

By Dan Merica, CNN

(CNN)-– Reaction to a recent Businessweek cover was swift and direct, with some bloggers and commentators going as far as to call the magazine exclusive “bigoted” and “out of bounds.”

The article – titled “How the Mormons Make Money,” by Caroline Winter – is an in-depth look into the business side of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, with much attention given to the tax benefits the church enjoys and the extent of its holdings of property and stock in multinational corporations.

The magazine cover, the aspect of the article receiving the most criticism, is a caricature of a well-known Mormon painting that shows John the Baptist blessing two Mormon leaders, Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery.

Next to John the Baptist is a thought bubble that reads, “… and thou shalt build a shopping mall, own stock in Burger King and open a Polynesian theme park in Hawaii that shall be largely exempt from the frustrations of tax.”

In response, Smith replies, “Hallelujah.”

Michael Purdy, spokesperson for the church, responded to the cover in a statement to CNN, “The Bloomberg Businessweek cover is in such poor taste it is difficult to even find the words to comment on it.”

Purdy’s disapproval extended beyond the cover. He said the article was “biased, inaccurate and speculative” in nature. “The article misses the mark and the cover is obviously meant to be offensive to many, including millions of Latter-day Saints,” Purdy wrote in an e-mail.

Multiple calls and e-mails by CNN to representatives at Bloomberg went unanswered.

CNN's Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the big stories

Others reserved their criticism for the magazine's cover. Mormon blogger Joanna Brooks  wrote that while the cover was certain to ruffle some Mormon feathers – it already has – the article was a “generally balanced and straightforward assessment of LDS Church finances and enterprises.”

Even still, Brooks wrote, the shock of the cover image will keep most readers, especially Mormons, from taking the article seriously.

“Today, I’ve been in contact with a few of the sources for the article, and they believe the mocking cover image will lead most Mormons to dismiss the entire article as an anti-Mormon hit piece,” wrote Brooks. “Trying to sell a few magazines, Businessweek destroyed an opportunity for a serious discussion.”

The vastness of the church’s holdings are quite remarkable, especially considering the relative age of the church and the size of its membership, the article says. According to Businessweek, a recent study by Ryan Cragun, a sociology professor at the University of Tampa, estimates the church receives around $8 billion in tithing from members each years and is worth around $40 billion.

Those estimates would be tough to solidify, said Rusty Leonard, CEO of MinistryWatch.com, a site that keeps a database of Christian ministries and nonprofits for donors to use and evaluate.

The IRS does not require churches, which are tax-exempt, to file disclosure forms with the government. Leonard said that makes the totality of church holdings difficult to pinpoint.

“They get tax-free status as a church and they get the freedom to do what they want to do with their money,” Leonard said. This is true, he said, for everything from a local congregation to a large entity like the Catholic Church. But the difference, according to Leonard, is that people can see what is going on in their own congregation, something they can’t necessarily do for an entire religious body.

“When you are talking about an institution, like the Catholic Church or the Mormon Church, if they don’t voluntary disclose, you don’t really know what they are doing,” Leonard said.

When asked about the $40 billion figure provided by Cragun, Doug Anderson, public affairs manager for the Mormon Church, refused to comment.

The idea of Mormon hit pieces has been common in recent months, especially because likely Republican nominee Mitt Romney is a member of the faith, leaving conservatives and Mormons alike to worry that his candidacy will open the door to unfair characterizations of the church.

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Nancy French, a blogger for the website Patheos, spoke to this concern in her column about the cover.

“Can you imagine if they’d made a cover mocking your religion?” French wrote. “It will only get worse between now and November.”

The church-owned and operated Deseret News paper wrote an editorial that not only went after the reporting – “the corners cut in this week's Businessweek story do a disservice,” read the editorial – but also went after the legitimacy of Businessweek itself.

“In an earlier era, Businessweek was known for intelligently introducing its audience to useful conceptual approaches,” the editorial said. “But in this week's edition, Businessweek seemed out of its depth on the very issues it should own.”


soundoff (1,352 Responses)
  1. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer really changes things,

    July 16, 2012 at 4:26 am |
    • just sayin

      But stupid never changes at all.

      July 16, 2012 at 4:29 am |
    • Jesus

      Prayer does not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!; '

      July 16, 2012 at 10:22 am |
    • skytag

      There is no objective evidence that prayer changes anything. Brainwashing children with fairytales about imaginary friends is not healthy.

      July 16, 2012 at 7:19 pm |
  2. chuckie

    Ya gotta love it. Obama has been called a Kenyan, a Muslim, a Marxist, a Socialist, not a citizen, unAmerican, a traitor, you name it. But a little attention turned on the Mormon church is taboo. If Romney can't stand a little heat like this, Putin will eat him alive.

    July 15, 2012 at 8:24 pm |
    • .

      This election isn't about the mormon church. It is about a presidential election. I don't think it is necessary to call anyone a moron and I know you are not one, but I think you know your comment was dumb and ignorant.

      July 15, 2012 at 8:29 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      What about chuckie's comment was dumb or ignorant? Every point he made was salient, and his opinion about Obama eating Romeny alive was just obvious IF this sort of satirical criticism is too much for Romney's camp.

      July 15, 2012 at 9:29 pm |
    • Moby d!ck caught by his mouth

      So it's CONFIRMED that it wasn't about the Church but just another LAME political stance against Romney that should be shaken like a dust on our feet.

      July 16, 2012 at 10:19 am |
    • Bride of Chooky

      Ey, series of DIMBULBS! It was oBUMa who was under attack, NOT the whatever Christian denomination or religion he is affiliated with.

      July 16, 2012 at 10:26 am |
    • LinSea

      Hardly, chuckie. Anti-Mormon literature has been around as long as the church has. There's a whole industry devoted to it. I was in high school before I ever saw a newspaper article that wasn't a complete hatchet job, full of lies and ridiculing the church. And every time there's an article about Romney, the bigots come out in droves on comment boards.

      July 16, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
  3. Bigrigtruckdriver

    In a similar Presidential campaign, the Kennedy family was scrutiunized for being devoted Catholics.
    Religious intollerence, as well as bigotry, flourishes in journalism just like in other areas of society.
    It is a shame.

    July 15, 2012 at 7:03 pm |
    • Now that

      was well said Bigrig

      July 15, 2012 at 9:51 pm |
  4. Reality

    AND THE INFAMOUS ANGELIC CONS CONTINUE TO WREAK STUPIDITY UPON THE WORLD

    Joe Smith had his Moroni. (As does M. Romney)

    "Latter-day Saints like M. Romney also believe that Michael the Archangel was Adam (the first man) when he was mortal, and Gabriel lived on the earth as Noah."

    Jehovah Witnesses have their Jesus /Michael the archangel, the first angelic being created by God;

    Mohammed had his Gabriel (this "tin-kerbell" got around).

    Jesus and his family had/has Michael, Gabriel, and Satan, the latter being a modern day demon of the demented. (As does BO and his family)

    The Abraham-Moses myths had their Angel of Death and other "no-namers" to do their dirty work or other assorted duties.

    Contemporary biblical and religious scholars have relegated these "pretty wingie/horn-blowing thingies" to the myth pile. We should do the same to include deleting all references to them in our religious operating manuals. Doing this will eliminate the prophet/profit/prophecy status of these founders and put them where they belong as simple humans just like the rest of us.

    July 15, 2012 at 5:51 pm |
  5. reason

    Why is it that we can no longer have civil discussions about issues. Business week writes a misleading piece that has millions believing that the companies owned by ths LDS church do not pay taxes (which they do) and the church gives almost nothing to charity, by comparing one LDS program to the total charitable giving of other churches. Intead of addressing the real facts, the discussion has devolved into name calling and unproductive posturing. Take the moral high ground.

    July 15, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
    • Reality

      There are different opinions as to what a religion really is or what a non-profit is. To be fair therefore, there should be no tax-exemptions for any group and that includes the Democratic and Republican Parties. Faith and community initiative grant monies should also be cancelled and there should also be no tax deductions for contributions made to charities and non-profits.

      July 15, 2012 at 11:30 pm |
    • Mickey1313

      I agree with reality.

      July 15, 2012 at 11:48 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Mickey and reality agree but that is not the law of the land. Many people have forgotten (or perhaps they have not) that the power to tax is the power to destroy. The reason religions are exempt from taxation is fundamental to the preservation of the first amendment right to freedom of religion. If the state is granted to power to destroy religion, they will eventually do so. The lesson of history tells us that religion is often the last bastion against the oppression of the state. So, beware people who propose taxation of religion; they have an agenda beyond taxation.

      July 16, 2012 at 1:00 pm |
    • Primewonk

      Actually Bill, religion is almost always the cause of oppression of a people.

      July 16, 2012 at 1:04 pm |
  6. chuckie

    Before i can vote for Mitt Romney, he needs to do an hour long TV show talking about the Mormon church and what he believes in. And it can't be on Fox News.

    July 15, 2012 at 5:06 pm |
    • reason

      Did you apply the same standard last election? I think it is a good idea to know what people believe, but the same people going after Romney completely avoided Rev. Wright. Whatever standard we apply, we should apply it to everyone.

      July 15, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
    • chuckie

      And Obama left Wright's church after it was proven to be incendiary. Will Romney leave the Mormon church as well?

      July 15, 2012 at 8:20 pm |
    • Mirosal

      According to the U.S. Consti'tution, it's supposed to be irrelevant what a person running for office believes. I refer you to Article 6. Please read it. All this stuff about faith is taking away from the real points of the election, because faith is moot. If you want "god" in office, then write "god" in on your ballot. Go ahead, do it. We'll see who or what shows up at the steps of the Capitol on Jan 20th, 2013.

      July 16, 2012 at 5:02 am |
    • A theist

      N1 Mirosal

      I've been here on this blog for quite a while and I know that you're not a religious one. But I salute your take on this particular issue.

      chuckie aka moby schtiek code name evolve one et' al are rather oBUMatards than irreligious.

      July 16, 2012 at 11:40 am |
  7. T dog

    Evolved one why you care so much about Mormons If you don't like them so much? Btw your a troll.

    July 15, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
    • evolved one

      You are not making much sense......and I do believe that I am far too articulate to be labelled a troll. Having strong opinions and ability to poke holes in flawed arguments does not a troll make.

      July 15, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
  8. Does the Book of Mormon

    Have a chapter that explains why smitty and his followers were allowed to give their prepubertal daughters to older men to take as their wives? Doctrinal child abuse, perhaps?

    July 15, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
    • evolved one

      Male privilege.....look at the structure of the present-day "chu rch".....all-male heirarchy and women are there just to be incubators for future paying congregants.

      July 15, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
  9. Bob

    Mormonism, Christianity and many other religions are anti-American. They are anti-capitalism since they oppose a free market and optimal pricing of goods, and they are anti-free speech. True conservatives should oppose these religions, as should reasoning liberals. Mormonism and Christianity are also racist and bigoted, given that they present "chosen races" and are unfair to women, among other reasons.

    Christianity, particularly that flagrantly practiced and grossly over-preached by evangelists, is also anti-science and is therefore putting our young people and our future workforce at a disadvantage relative to competing nations that now have better science education without religious bias and without the ancient supersti-tions that block modern understanding and technological and medical progress.

    Therefore, if we want to keep our great country the greatest in the world, a status that is increasingly questionable and under threat, Americans need to overthrow the power that religion has in the US, and ultimately get past religion entirely. We need to take our freedom back from the power-holders and practitioners of these religions, and push back hard against the idiocies that religion represents.

    Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement. Be free of religion and other superstitions.
    http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

    July 15, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
    • evolved one

      Careful dude, some do-gooder out there just might feel that you are being angry and will want to counsel you and save you.....hahahahah......btw, with regards to your inclusiveness – thank you for saying what you did. I shudder for the future of this country if someone like a Romney or a Santorum were to take over the highest office of the country.....I would urge any and all who do think outside of the box to read margaret Atwood's book, The Handmaid's Tale – a book about a future where America no longer exists except as some theocratic republic based on Old Testament scripture. Scary stuff and not too far off the mark if one does their research at what is said behind certain closed doors.

      July 15, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
    • bob

      This great country as you aptly called it was founded by men and women that believed in god. That is why our pledge of allegiance, national anthem, and even our currency all reference god.

      July 15, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
    • Robert

      (formerly bob) didn't intend for name confusion. Also many of the great scientists were and are men of faith, predominantly Christian. Even Charles Darwin who is used frequently to attack religion was himself a Christian. I do not believe that science and religion on opposing forces at all.

      July 15, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
    • Bob

      Robert, none of your points are valid support for religion in the present day, and nor do they rebut what I said.

      So think about this, regarding your particular god: if it really exists, then why can't it produce clear, incontrovertible, current evidence for itself. We have reasonable grounds for doubt in the absence of that, so your god is either unreasonable or doesn't exist.

      July 15, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
    • Bob

      evolved one, thanks. Yes, have that book by Atwood. Good points about that comparable.

      July 15, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
    • Robert

      Neither is their proof that religion is the cause of our country's faults. I have seen far to many lazy students both religious and not and i think that is more of the problem. Kids want instant gratification and don't want to spend the hours necessary to earn a degree in the sciences. the only predictions of the future that have credence are based on the results of the past. If men of faith were able to lead this country from nonexistence to greatness then great men can again lead this country regardless of religious belief. I am not here to tell you anyone is or is not a great person but to discount someone due to religious status is illogical given the history of our country. As an aside evolved one must be the most articulate troll ever imagined.

      July 15, 2012 at 4:55 pm |
    • evolved one

      Wow, just because someone has an opinion that may not jibe with yours it does not make them a troll.

      July 15, 2012 at 5:33 pm |
    • Bob

      Robert, stop dodging. Answer my question.

      July 15, 2012 at 6:39 pm |
    • Bob

      And neither have I stated, Robert, that religion is the only problem. It is one of many. That does not make it not worth eliminating.

      July 15, 2012 at 6:41 pm |
  10. evolved one

    For those of you commenting that it is atheists who are dictatorial, hypocritical and arrogant.....if you are so happy within your chosen belief systems why worry about what someone else has to say about it? Seriously. Go on about your business and leave the rest of us to ours......in other words, stop trying to convince us that your way is the only way, that your morality is the only morality and that only through submission to a god can one be happy......you certainly do not see folks like myself out there going door to door and telling folks what they must do in order to feel "loved". Really, get over yourselves.....

    July 15, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
    • .

      So, you beg the question, evolved. Why are you here? This is a blog about faith! What is an atheist doing on a "faith blog". Are you not secure in your own beliefs?

      July 15, 2012 at 2:44 pm |
    • evolved one

      You don't seem to get it oh nameless one.....atheists do not have a belief system. That seems to be too deep a concept for many of you to grasp. I am here because of the issues as raised by the magazine cover. I am here because I believe in separation of church and state. I am here because I believe any church that operates as a corporation should pay taxes.

      My, my but aren't you a wee bit touchy about your "faith"......so much for that security blanket.

      July 15, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
    • isn't that ironic?

      "I am here because I believe in separation of church and state."
      And..
      "I am here because I believe any church that operates as a corporation should pay taxes."

      LOL!

      @evolve one.

      It's pretty obvious that you have NOT evolve yet. Go back to your shell.

      July 16, 2012 at 11:45 am |
    • skytag

      Nameless one: I come here to discuss the issue being discussed. I see no reason to believe I shouldn't participate in a discussion simply because it's targeted at people who embrace fairytales about an imaginary friend.

      July 16, 2012 at 7:17 pm |
  11. evolved one

    Yeah, right, read Alma blah blah blah.....did and I also read some of Ken Bower's screed out of his tome, "Hiding in Plain Sight – Unmasking the Secret Combinations of the Last Days". You people are fearful of those of us who would dare to think independently and question patriachal delusional dogma.

    July 15, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
    • .

      Evolved one, I just have to ask; what in the world are you so angry about? Are you a former member of the church who is disgruntled over something? Anything I can do to help?

      July 15, 2012 at 2:11 pm |
    • evolved one

      Angry? hahahahaha.....oh so because i have the temerity to question a "faith" that seems more Grimms Fairy Tales that means I must be angry? Once again, arrogance on your part to assume my demeanor is one of anger simply because I am not a blind follower of a paternalistic code. Wow.

      July 15, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
    • .

      I expected a snide remark, but come on, one doesn't attack something the way you do without some kind of history. What are you so angry about?

      July 15, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
    • evolved one

      Perception vs. Reality.......your perceptions do not equal my reality. LOL

      July 15, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
  12. .

    If you really want to know about Mormonism, just go to mormon.org. There are kind people there who will answer your questions one on one. It will make you feel better and have a better day. It will make you a better, more loving person

    July 15, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
    • evolved one

      Wow......more arrogance and hypocrisy.

      July 15, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
  13. evolved one

    Jesus died for somebody's sins but not mine.......Patti Smith

    July 15, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
  14. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    July 15, 2012 at 1:15 pm |
    • evolved one

      So does free will.....

      July 15, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
  15. Jesus is the most powerful figure known to mankind (Fact)

    Belief is based off of opinion, it can either be true or false. Atheist and some scientist believe there is no Creator (God), but creation created itself. Christians know that there is a God due to the evidence all around us. There is a difference between believing and knowing. Scientist cannot give solid physical evidence proving that love exists. Yet doesnt pretty much everyone know it exist? There is less evidence that love exist then there is evidence that God exist. There are physical things all around us proving God's existence. What evidence can anyone prove that love exist? Scientist have never seen black holes nor can they prove that they exist yet they say they know it exist. Is this not faith? They say gravity exist as well as wind is this not faith? So who is really blind Christians or atheist? The answer is crystal clear. Just a reminder John 8:47-"He who belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God." John 15:19-"If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you."

    July 15, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
    • evolved one

      Flawed logic dude.....and to speak of love and hate within the same screed? Make up your mind - as a "christian" is it not your duty to unconditionally "love" all of god creatures (including non-believers) or is cherry-picking god-approved? LOL.....

      July 15, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
  16. The Book of Mormon speaks about modern atheists

    Read Alma 30:13-18 and see why it's (The Book of MOrmon) the most correct book in the face of the earth.

    July 15, 2012 at 12:48 pm |
    • evolved one

      My oh my but is arrogance one of your must-attain virtues? Congratulations......arrogance achieved! Delusional, paternalistic hooey......Joseph Smith was a pervert.

      July 15, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
    • Does the Book Of Mormon

      Tell you what to do if someone gives you a wedgie while wearing your magic underwear?

      July 15, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
    • Enlightened one

      Evolved one is a sadistic pervert who loathes himself. That is why he calls others perverts, because he is one himself. He is a loathsome, arrogant pervert!

      July 15, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
    • evolved one

      Well Enlightened One is that magic underwear cutting off the circulation to your pea brain? Gotta love the lame attempts at hurling insults. Oh btw, you really do assume wrongly of me, on several counts....hehehehe.....but that is quite typical behaviour of one who is heavily ensconced in the patriarchy.

      July 15, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
    • IKYABWAI

      Enlightened one must be a perv, who calls others who call others pervs, pervs..... ad infinitum

      July 15, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • A challenge to every atheists

      Read Alma 30:13-18 and see how the Book of Mormon speaks about you all atheists.

      July 15, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
    • Get Real

      A challenge to every atheists
      "Read Alma 30:13-18"

      Big news from Joseph Smith's magic talking hat?!!

      July 15, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
    • one-celled plant

      @evolved one

      Arrogance is in your moniker claiming something that you aren't yet and afraid of.

      July 15, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
    • evolved one

      Love it when all these so-called christians come out a spittin' mad at us infidels....they really do practice such a loving system of beliefs.....hahahahaha

      July 15, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
    • A challenge to every atheists

      Read Alma 30:13-18 and witness and marvel how a man with less education perfectly described atheists today in a book (he) translated more than centuries ago.

      July 15, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
    • Does the Book of Mormon

      Not have any advive on magic underwear wedgies? They can run off at the mouth in alma about something that shows how ignorant smitty was, but has no practicle advice.

      July 15, 2012 at 1:53 pm |
    • SCUBA

      @A challenge to every atheists,

      It sounds like they held you under the water too long...

      July 15, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
    • CrapSpot

      "evolve one" has been practicing the TYPICAL atheist's principle.

      For theists, it is arrogance and bigotry but for atheists, it is absolutely okay.

      July 15, 2012 at 2:02 pm |
    • Bizarre

      @A challenge, Was this you on a Mormon chat board a while ago?

      "I could never stand to wear it [a bra] over [the "garment"] and felt bad that I wore it under . After about 20 years I finally asked my Bishop what the rule was and he said it didn't matter one way or the other and if it was more comfortable to wear it under that it was fine.
      If your Bishop says differently, you just have to ask around until you find one that agrees :-)"

      http://mormondiscussions.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=12289

      July 15, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
    • AtheisIsCrap

      And "evolve one" is the "perfect" example.

      July 15, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
    • JWT

      What possible reason is there for knowing what the book of mormon says about anything. The church – as with most things – is known by what it does not what it says,

      July 15, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
    • A challenge to every atheists

      No more talks, just read! (Alma 30:13-18)

      July 15, 2012 at 2:51 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      I read it an am not impressed. It's just like when the bible calls nonbelievers 'fools,' or other cults tell their members that their family and friends wont understand. The atheist guy who got struck dumb was just offering the naturalistic viewpoint which makes the most sense. Of course the religious nutjob is going to call that viewpoint wrong and blasphemous and your cult is going to present the story as a warning. Duh.

      July 15, 2012 at 5:43 pm |
    • A challenge to every atheists

      The most common ridicule to theists from atheists:

      Blind faith and No prophecy are best described in chapter 13

      Brainwashed, delusioned, foolish are best described in Chapter 16.

      Most common belief and principles of atheists:

      No Christ, to see is to believe, no proof no existence are best described in chapter 15

      No atonement; self-dependency and righteousness; logic and clinging to their own understanding and strenght; no sin; are clearly elaborated in chapter 17 and no after life-the last part of chapter 18. And last but not the least...

      The common practice and purpose of atheists for all people are clearly revealed in chapter 18.

      The book was first published more than 1 and a half centuries ago and was translated by a man who has less education.

      No it wasn't about about korihor being struckdumb but the KNOWLEDGE and WISDOM behind it.

      July 16, 2012 at 11:20 am |
  17. HeavenSent

    I hurt my leg and could not kneel to pray, as the young men in the picture, so I just bent over and jesus came in hard behind me. Turns out I like it up the asz. Jesus loves me and my asz knows it.

    July 15, 2012 at 12:42 pm |
    • Jimtanker

      Jesus loves you still.

      July 15, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Yes he does, praying he comes again soon, slightly bent over, praise the lord.

      July 15, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
    • Guest

      It's idiotic comments like yours is one of the reason there is such a backlash against gay people in this country. People will see your comment and think that you are all like that. Such ignorance on your part. Think about it.

      July 15, 2012 at 1:24 pm |
    • HeavenSkunt

      Jesus loves everyone even to filthy, pathetic and miserable creatures like me, Jimtanker, et'al

      July 15, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Idiots make idiotic comments, i was thinking, such as it is I live for the love of jesus. Amen.

      July 15, 2012 at 1:47 pm |
    • CrapSpot

      I'm not sure if HeavenSent is talking by/to himself or to his phony stalker.

      July 15, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
  18. .

    The early members of the church lost everything they had. They were driven from place to place and finally were thrown out of their lovely city of Nauvoo, lost their homes, their businesses and farms, some lost their families, and finally on the treck to Salt Lake City, many lost their lives. My own great grandfather was in the Willey-Martin handcart company where many froze or starved to death. Do you think he joined the church for personal gain? You are seriously disillusioned, my friend!

    July 15, 2012 at 12:41 pm |
    • evolved one

      Live in the now.......your so-called church is built on heaps of filty lucre.

      July 15, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • evolved one

      correction – heaps of "fil thy" lucre.....

      July 15, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
  19. evolved one

    "You dont get rich writing science fiction. If you want to get rich you start a religion....." - L. Ron Hubbard

    July 15, 2012 at 11:55 am |
  20. .

    Why I am a mormon.  Mormon is a nickname given to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  We call ourselves saints because that is what the Christians called themselves in Jesus’ time.  It is Latter-days because we are the Church of Jesus Christ of modern times which are the latter days.  The church is organized on the same principles as the original and ancient church of Jesus Christ on the foundation of living apostles and prophets and with priesthood authority from God.  Our beliefs are summarized by the Articles of Faith:
    “We believe in God the eternal Father, and in His Son Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost.
    “We believe that men will be punished for their own sins, and not for Adam’s transgression.
    “We believe that through the atonement of Christ all mankind may be saved by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel.
    “We believe that the first principle[s] and ordinances of the Gospel are: (1) Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; (2) Repentance; (3) Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; (4) Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost.
    “We believe that a man must be called of God by prophecy and by the laying on hands, by those who are in authority, to preach the Gospel and administer in the ordinances thereof.
    “We believe in the same organization that existed in the primitive Church, viz: apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, evangelists, etc.
    “We believe in the gift of tongues, prophecy, revelation, visions, healing, interpretation of tongues, etc.
    “We believe the Bible to be the word of God, as far as it is translated correctly; we also believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God.
    “We believe all that God has revealed, all that He does now reveal, and we believe that He will yet reveal many great and important things pertaining to the kingdom of God.
    “We believe in the literal gathering of Israel and in the restoration of the Ten Tribes; that Zion will be built upon this [the American] continent; that Christ will reign personally upon the earth; and that the earth will be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory.
    “We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the di ctates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may.
    “We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers and magistrates, in obeying[,] honoring, and sustaining the law.
    “We believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to all men; indeed we may say that we follow the admonition of Paul, ‘We believe all thing[s], we hope all things, we have endured many things, and hope to be able to endure all things. If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report, or praiseworthy, we seek after these things.
    “Respectfully, &c., Joseph Smith” 
    Anyone who would like to know more about the church can go to mormon.org.

    July 15, 2012 at 11:28 am |
    • penseur

      It's all pie in the sky, friend.

      July 15, 2012 at 11:56 am |
    • evolved one

      So, do you get heaven credits for that spew? Paternalistic hooey. And btw, removing your name tag – what purpose does that serve? You had one displayed earlier. So, what do you have to hide?

      July 15, 2012 at 11:58 am |
    • Evolved one

      I just realized that the one spewing hooey is me! I just realized that I am not evolved at all, but am a miserable jerk! Now do you understand why some people are reluctant to use an identi ty?

      July 15, 2012 at 12:30 pm |
    • evolved one

      Excuse me? So, you change my name to one with a capital E and think you are being so clever? This is what happens when you spend your life ensconsced in the land of fairy tales.....you regress. Whatever makes you happy I suppose...LOL

      July 15, 2012 at 1:07 pm |
    • D.V.

      To the person that makes the statement: "Why I am a Mormon". Don't go to "Mormon.Org" if you want to know about the Mormon Church go to the official and correct name of the Mormon Church: The Corporation of the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints tells a more accurate story about the real purpose of the Mormon Church as set forth in its Articles of Incorporation. All the rest is just an illusion.

      July 16, 2012 at 7:22 am |
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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 with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.