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Personal e-mail urging Mormons to fast and pray for Romney goes national
Though not sanctioned by the LDS Church, an email chain is asking Mormons to fast and pray for Mitt Romney before debates.
September 28th, 2012
11:18 AM ET

Personal e-mail urging Mormons to fast and pray for Romney goes national

By Jessica Ravitz, CNN

(CNN) – A Utah woman unwittingly started a grassroots campaign when an e-mail she sent to her five children and a handful of friends urging a day of prayer and fasting for Mitt Romney started making the Mormon rounds.

Mona Williams, a Price, Utah, member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, wrote last Sunday evening to tell people closest to her how frustrated she is with the state of the country.

“A lot of my frustration is because I feel I don’t know what to do to really make a change. Well, this time I do,” she wrote. “I am asking you to join me and my family on Sunday Sept. 30 by fasting and praying for Mitt Romney. That he will be blessed in the debates,” the first of which is next Wednesday.

“I know that seems like such a small thing, but I believe ‘from small things, great things can come about,’” she continued. “I know that fasting and praying brings about miracles.”

The message that was intended for a group of about 10 people has since cropped up in Mormon inboxes around the country, including in Colorado, California and Nevada, BuzzFeed reported.

The attention that has followed has left Williams both floored and uncomfortable. When she was contacted by CNN affiliate KTVX on Wednesday, she said, “You could have pushed me over with a feather.”

“Can we just pretend this didn’t happen,” she asked with a laugh when CNN reached her Thursday night. She spoke to fears about those who dismiss people of faith, or take what she and others consider sacred and make it ugly.

“I’m simply a woman with faith,” she told CNN. “I am just a woman who believes that God loves this country and his hand is in whatever happens.”

The shaping of a candidate: A look at Mitt Romney's faith journey

It's common for faithful Mormons to fast for a day each month while offering prayers for a particular purpose.

And for Williams, who works as an aide to special needs kids, it’s prayers – not money – that she has to give to her candidate of choice.

But she also sees that she has struck a chord with those who are like her.

“We’re very silent. We’re not very in your face. I’m not going to go stand up and march … And I’m not going to chew on someone’s backside,” Williams said. “But I can use my faith. It’s a very personal, passionate thing.”

The e-mail was not sanctioned or cleared by Mormon church officials. In fact, the church “is strictly politically neutral and does not endorse political candidates,” LDS Church spokesman Michael Purdy told CNN in a written statement.

Explain it to me: Mormonism | Video: Mormonism defined

The Student Review, a student-run paper at LDS Church-owned Brigham Young University posted Williams' message – or at least a version of her message that was forwarded - online, and the responses reveal a community rich with a variety of perspectives.

“I cannot tell you how scared I am for the future of our country,” wrote an unnamed student who is heading toward graduation. “What I do know is that Mitt Romney is a worthy priesthood-holding leader who has the potential to do a lot of good for our country. I know the Lord takes worthy men and makes them qualified for miraculous experiences.”

While another student answered that Romney’s name should be added to the “Temple Prayer List,” others fired back, calling such rhetoric “completely ridiculous” and “embarrassing.”

With or without Romney, D.C. a surprising Mormon stronghold

“You assume that if we fast then God will bless Mitt Romney to win,” wrote Ryan. “Who are you to say that it’s God’s will that Mitt Romney wins? I’ve been an active member my entire life and I can’t support Mitt Romney with a good conscience. Just because he is a member of our church does not mean all of his policies are correct or even moral.”

Added Jay: “The Lord DOES care about who leads our country, He just doesn’t care what party they are from. Only we look at party, whereas the Lord looks on the heart.”

It's precisely with her heart that Williams will fast and pray this Sunday, because that, she said, is what she can do.

"Whatever happens in this country," she says, "at least I've done my part."

- CNN Writer/Producer

Filed under: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints • Mitt Romney • Mormonism • Politics

soundoff (2,123 Responses)
  1. Socrates

    Mormons fast and pray for Romney to their ghost. I hope they let us know the response of their ghost.

    September 28, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
  2. Texas Boy

    Jesus Christ is my Savior, and by His Grace I am saved.

    P.S. I happen to be a Mormon too.

    September 28, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
    • 24 Hour Crisis Center

      Texas Boy, why are you a Mormon?

      September 28, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
    • Sly

      Why do you need a 'savior'? Did you do something wrong?

      Besides, I thought the hippie with the holes in his hands died for all of us, so we can do what ever we want now?

      It's cool though – with all those gorgeous teenage virgin chicks up in Heaven I'm going to really enjoy every moment.

      Can we say 'savior' the moment?

      September 28, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
    • Texas Boy

      I am a Mormon for a number of reasons. I have seen both sides of life, both with and without Christ. I appreciate the majesty that God has not closed the heavens that He has an ongoing awareness of His children through revelation from modern day prophets as well as direct revelation and inspiration. I have witnesses miracles and have a knowledge that Christ is My Savior.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
    • Texas Boy

      Additionally I find life immensely fulfilling just by living its tenets.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
    • 24 Hour Crisis Center

      Texas Boy you didn't answer my question. Why Mormon?

      September 28, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
    • Sly

      Texas Boy ... I'm just messing with you. Seriously, I think it's great that all people are happy following their beliefs.

      You have your god, hindu's have theirs. Muslims have Allah. Jewish people have some god ... Plenty to choose from.

      And I'm no one to talk, since I believe that Barry Bonds is God. I've seen many many miracles out of Him. I know he's not perfect ... but he's a good enough God for me.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
    • derf

      But Texas Boy, you think Jesus is just some guy off on a planet of his own having a really big old time. Does he have time for your salvation thingy? Probably not.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
    • truth be told

      Mormons are not Christian, so the Jesus Christ they accept is not the Christ of God. The Mormon Jesus is no different than the Jesus people curse by.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
  3. Dubya Romney

    Somebody should forward Chris Christie this letter.

    September 28, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
  4. fideauxdon

    I heard that they also plan to not change their Sacred Underwear until Mitt is elected. That should really do great things for the Tourism Folks an Utah, Nevada, Idaho and a few other states.

    September 28, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
    • Dubya Romney

      Yes, the Holy skidmarks.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
  5. Eat up, Mormons.

    Is a fast something like a hunger strike, then? Are they refusing to eat until Willard gets elected? And just what material good do they think it will do anyway?

    September 28, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
  6. Stevo

    Some real bigots on this board.

    September 28, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
    • Towelie

      Do you wanna get high Stevo?

      September 28, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
  7. 2020

    That tells you how desperate Romney is.

    Unfortunately, the lattest saint was fired by Romney, out of service.

    September 28, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
  8. snowboarder

    the parties should have a fast-off. the collective american waistline could use it.

    September 28, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
  9. Willis

    It Is an Absolute Fact that in 1978 the Lds caved when being forced by the Us to let Men of COLOR be Preist in the Cult Called Mormonism. The Head Tabby Nackle announced to all of its MILLIONS of Members a Stupid Ass Story that Dead Smitty called Dead Briggs & they had a Pow Wow with Head Tabby Nackle & decided that BLACKS could serve as Preist. Im not makin this up, Mormons are Really that BRAINWASHED.

    September 28, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
    • snowboarder

      cult = an unpopular religion
      religion = a popular cult

      September 28, 2012 at 3:16 pm |
    • youreright

      Yes, and "priest" = adult male who is a leader of a family. They also couldn't go to paradise and become a god...

      What a load of c rap!

      September 28, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
    • rickwh

      Who knows, all of this praying may bring in the mothership. I don't recall exactly which planet Romney's god lives on so I hope the commute isn't too bad.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
  10. usa

    The Democrats had to vote God back into their platform – and they didn't even do it with a 2/3 majority. Where's the headline on that?

    September 28, 2012 at 3:12 pm |
    • Steaming Pile of Mitt

      That is disgusting that only 1/3 voted correctly to keep religion out of politics.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
    • snowboarder

      just a couple of christian activists trying to force god on the rest of us.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
    • Steaming Pile of Mitt

      How do you feel about Mormons believing there are millions of Gods and that they will all become one after they die and rule over their own planet?

      September 28, 2012 at 3:16 pm |
    • Sly

      Ha ha ha ... now that's hilarious "God on a political Platform".

      We all know the only God is Allah, and yes, there are 79 Virgins waiting up there.

      Come on folks – do the math - there are likely hundreds of thousands of gorgeous teen-age virgins up there, and NO LAWS!

      I will break Wilt the Stilt's record in just over 3 weeks – and that's ONLY with teenage virgin chicks.

      Heaven will be ... well ... 'heavanly!'.

      Can you say "Allah Ackbar – young chicks are GREAT".

      September 28, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
    • LastDinosaur

      There were headlines about that – when it happened. This is several weeks later, and that shouldn't have been an issue in the first place. Check out the First Amendment sometime. Maybe read a few biographies of the founding fathers to get a sense of how appalled they would be with the notion that anyone in 2012 should think that the country they fought to establish is a "Christian nation."

      Politicized nods to God are a relic of the Cold War mentality, rooted in a fear of "godless Communism." Get over it.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
    • Saboth

      I'm ashamed they had to vote God back into the platform. Because he shouldn't have been in there the first time. Separation of Church and State, please.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
    • Fearless Freep

      Democrats dont need God in thier platform.
      All are welcome.

      September 28, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
  11. Rewind

    Maybe Advberg can fast and it will kill him/her...whatever the Phuck IT is! lol!!!

    September 28, 2012 at 3:11 pm |
  12. Steaming Pile of Mitt

    Lobsters are on sale for 4.50 a pound, I am chowing down tonight for Obama!

    September 28, 2012 at 3:11 pm |
  13. buzz

    They are not holding their breath.

    September 28, 2012 at 3:10 pm |
  14. Michael

    Yeah. That should work :)

    September 28, 2012 at 3:10 pm |
  15. AMERICA NEEDS MITT ROMNEY

    Top Ten Reasons to like Mitt Romney:

    1. He is a plastic cliché of what makes white Americans feel comfortable.

    2. He is a good husband, just like Obama.

    3. Robs from the poor and gives to the rich. Can't be concerned about the poor and elderly if it gets in the way of profits.

    4. He can’t really speak. At all.

    5. Highly intelligent. Believes in sky fairies, space aliens and magic underwear.

    6. Has no experience beyond his silver spo.on. Cannot relate to average Americans but he knows the rich quite well.

    7. Lives in the past and is completely out of touch with the 21st century. Just like the evangelical Right likes it.

    8. Has five sons who are not high. Obama has two daughters who do not do drugs too, however they are black.

    9. Oh yes.....he's a MORMON. No need to be afraid of a hom.ophobic, racist, delusional cult that hopes to become Gods.

    10. And one more point.....pundits say because of his wealth, he can't relate to ordinary Americans.

    His dad didn’t help at all except for his privileged lifestyle, personal loans, college education and connections at the highest possible levels to guarantee success via nepotism. Obama only had to do everything on his own.

    The Republican Party. The party that would stop teaching science in schools and hope to return American to the Iron Age.
    Republicans care about…Republicans. Let's keep it that way.

    September 28, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
    • A Traveler

      Sadly, many republicans are going to read your posting and be convinced that you are serious.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
  16. RogerFrancis

    Mormons will vote enmasse for Robmey like Blacks do for Obama.

    September 28, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
  17. Phil

    Yep, the comments are about as reprehensible as I expected. Congratulations, Internet!

    September 28, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
    • Towelie

      You're a towel Phil.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:11 pm |
    • Phil

      Thank you, Towelie

      September 28, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
  18. Sly

    God did not hit 762 career homers by fasting. Religious people generally are poor readers. "Be fast and play", not "fast and pray". Barry Barry Barry!

    September 28, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
  19. derf

    Hey Mormons! I'm having a really big BACON CHEESEBURGER right now and I was thinking about Mitt's chances and all so I thought I'd let you know how great my BACON CHEESEBURGER is tasting right now. Wish you all could have one. Bye!

    September 28, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
    • Mormon101

      um...you're not making any sense. if you wanted to consume something that Mormons don't, try tobacco products, alcohol, or tea. Mormons abstain from those things as a sort of personal code of health...bacon cheeseburgers not included. Although..maybe they ought to be. lol. Moderation in all things is the key, friends.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:18 pm |
    • smitty

      Oh man, that whole bacon cheeseburger remark made me break down and eat!

      September 28, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
    • derf

      Hey Mormon101! You mean even if you weren't fasting for Mitt you couldn't have a beer with your BACON CHEESEBURGER? Not even a full pint of SMOOTH THICK CREAMY STOUT with hints of chocolate and molasses?

      September 28, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
  20. Rose

    Oh my , better get word out to Christian churches to pass the word to fast for Obama. Got to cancel out the mormon fast for Romney.

    September 28, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
    • Ancient Texan

      But what if the Christian Churches have already fasted and prayed and decided that Obama is not the right choice for America?

      September 28, 2012 at 3:12 pm |
    • youreright

      Ancient Texan... go third party, but don't vote for a cultist!

      September 28, 2012 at 3:18 pm |
    • A Traveler

      @ Ancient Texan - I'm not sure how much credibility texans have after bush jr. and Rick Perry. I am certain that nothing fails like prayer.

      September 28, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
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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.