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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. J.C

    So fast and pray. It's no skin off my nose. I think it's foolish to assume that all Mormons will vote for Romney, or pray for him either. There are a lot of Mormon Democrats. Harry Reid for one. There's a Mormon Democrat (Scott Howell) running against Orrin Hatch ( a Republican Mormon) for Senator from Utah. I'm really sure Howell won't be fasting and praying for any Republicans. And the town where the writer of the original email lives- Price, Utah – Is in Carbon County- a solid blue county in a red state. No wonder Mona Williams is a little nervous. Likely all her neighbors have Obama signs in the front yard.

    September 28, 2012 at 10:22 pm |
  2. Ireporttwo

    Maybe they should tell him to stop lying too. Fast for that.

    September 28, 2012 at 10:19 pm |
    • Scott

      You're confused Ireporttwo. The Mormons are fasting for Romney, not your beloved BoBo ;)

      Scott

      September 28, 2012 at 10:54 pm |
  3. Ron

    “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.”

    Then you must admit that if God loves this country and has a hand in everything, He also loved Obama being president and wants him re-elected. Unless, of course, God only loves this country when a person you approve of is in office, and the rest of the time he hates it.

    September 28, 2012 at 10:18 pm |
  4. Hey

    full on bulimia isn't going to save this guy.

    September 28, 2012 at 10:18 pm |
  5. MCP123

    this guys not a mormon...he's really a baptist...

    His grandfather was a mexican... planet there by russian communists in 1955... he inherited his communist nature after studying under various mexican subject matter experts.

    September 28, 2012 at 10:15 pm |
    • Athy

      How about making your comment again. But make it in readable English this time, please.

      September 29, 2012 at 3:15 am |
  6. Robert

    Who cares what the Mormons do? Blacks make up more than 12% of the population in the United States and will vote at a rate of about 98% for Obama. Mormons make up less than 2% of the population of the US and even if they all were conservative (which they are not) it wouldn't make up for the blacks that will vote for Obama ONLY because he is black.

    So what's the problem here......stop all your whining.

    September 28, 2012 at 10:14 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      It must be nice to have such a simplistic view of how things work and how people vote.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:15 pm |
    • Robert

      There is absolutely no reason to look at this any other way than simply. All you knuckleheads are worrying about nothing. All this noise is political and news manipulation. It's all BS and you are fools for even listening to any of it.

      Millions of dollars are being spent to convince the 2% of morons that don't know how they are going to vote yet. Period.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:19 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @HG,

      it's pretty accurate in this case though.

      http://projects.pewforum.org/2012-presidential-election-candidate-religious-groups/#all-registered-voters

      95% of Black Protestants will vote for Obama. They represent 6.9% of the population.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:20 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Robert,

      arguably, that's the scariest part of the process. The whole outcomeof the Presidential election will be determined by a handful of people in a handful of counties in OH, PA, (and maybe WI and FL) who make up their minds in the polling station.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:22 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      I don't think it is that simple. Correlation does not mean causation, and find it to be more along the lines that a large amount of blacks see the democrats as the more inclusive party, especially with the current GOP. Please note that I'm not talking about all blacks, but to say that 98% of blacks are only voting on race is completely ignorant.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:27 pm |
    • Robert

      Well HawaiiGuest, you can believe anything you want. But you are still dumb to think it's all that complicated. All the emotional energy being wasted over nothing is more comical than the election is.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:43 pm |
    • Sandra

      Polls getting so bad for Mitt Romney I saw a guy scraping a Romney bumper sticker off his car " It was Paul Ryan"

      September 28, 2012 at 10:44 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      Gee what an insightful and in depth refutation of my post. You should write for AiG you're so good.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:56 pm |
  7. ihavelegos

    It's amazing that so few know anything about Mormons. Most people probably don't know that they fast. Or what they do in their temple.

    I have no idea how Romney became a presidential candidate when so few people really know what core Mormon values really are.

    September 28, 2012 at 10:11 pm |
  8. keyser

    Why is their god demanding a fast and prayer. Is it to change this god's decision that Romney will lose and convince the god it was wrong? Or is it to grovel before the god and beg it to take sides in the election? And if the god is in charge of the election why are we voting? And why is the young student afraid for the future of our country if Romney does not win since all is in the hands of this god. Is he afraid the god will not protect him?

    September 28, 2012 at 10:08 pm |
  9. ElmerGantry

    JPX stated

    ______________________

    JPX
    I know, right? It's so ridiculous that people pray to imaginary gods for things. I mean, really, do they really believe that a magical man in the sky cares about the outcome of this election? What will they think when Obama wins? It's 2012, people, enough with the Bronze Age thinking!

    September 28, 2012 at 8:11 pm | Report abuse |

    ________________________

    Exactly right JPX.

    IN THE 2008 election Sarah Palin famously stated on national television that regarding the election, that god would do the right thing on Election Day.

    LOL

    September 28, 2012 at 9:59 pm |
    • keyser

      LOL. That's great! It reminds me when that Baptist preacher ran in the presidential primary in Iowa and after he won he told the media that this god told him he was going to win the presidency in the upcoming election. Some people are such fools.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:12 pm |
  10. sarah

    Mormons, open your minds. There's so much beyond the church's mind control. I know you don't think that way, but it's true. You are raised to not know how to think out of the box.

    September 28, 2012 at 9:59 pm |
  11. Jim

    I'm going to do my part too. I'm going to feast all day Sunday.

    September 28, 2012 at 9:55 pm |
  12. Sandra

    Just in from Fox News "so you know it true" Mitt Romney's Campaign is so Dead The Mormons just Baptized It.

    September 28, 2012 at 9:55 pm |
    • Lord Golob from Kolob

      Even on Kolob, that is very funny. Kakakakakakaka, as we say.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:00 pm |
    • ElmerGantry

      Now that is funny.

      Thanks for the laugh!

      September 28, 2012 at 10:03 pm |
    • ElmerGantry

      Like I stated this is funny. May I suggest the following enhancement?

      Shepard Smith with the following FOX NEWS ALERT This just in, Mitt Romney's Campaign is so Dead The Mormons just Baptized It.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:11 pm |
    • End Religion

      fyi, i will not pay you royalties when i steal that joke from you.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:45 pm |
  13. FU

    Let's all just remember Romney believes in magical underwear and that "god" lives near a planet called Kolob.

    September 28, 2012 at 9:54 pm |
    • Lord Golob from Kolob

      Shhhhhh. We Kolobians try to be discreet when we use your planet for a latrine. Mittens Rmoney is getting us way too much exposure.

      September 28, 2012 at 9:56 pm |
  14. sparky

    Hungry Mormons = VICTORY!!!

    September 28, 2012 at 9:39 pm |
    • End Religion

      i get it now. I thought all this talk of fasting meant Mormons were going to run everywhere on Sunday. My mistake...

      September 28, 2012 at 10:47 pm |
  15. Gast

    I may be Mormon, but if I'm going to fast and pray for a candidate, it won't be Romney. His campaign and stances do not jive with my interpretation of my religion.

    September 28, 2012 at 9:32 pm |
  16. Ariel

    Fast and pray is so 19th century. Send an email to planet Kolob instead.

    September 28, 2012 at 9:26 pm |
  17. steve

    ROFLMAO. Sacrifice a lamb first. Lets get this magic right.

    September 28, 2012 at 9:26 pm |
  18. Yeah, I'm Referring To You

    I see what is a real curiosity on here. It would seem to me, that those who belong to the Mormon church would be supportive of this woman who seeks prayer, even if they don't agree with her in doing so, instead of going to great lengths to be critical of her. Something is not right with that.

    September 28, 2012 at 9:23 pm |
    • Scott

      I don't understand what part of the article you are referring to. Please explain.

      Scott

      September 28, 2012 at 9:29 pm |
  19. mmr

    Sen Reid was such a moron for trying to stir up the Mormons against Romney. He would have been far better off without his stupid comments fueling their fire... One of these days we will be smart enough to get rid of Reid and the problems he just keeps causing.

    September 28, 2012 at 9:10 pm |
    • End Religion

      if one is not smart enough to see through the fraud of religion, it does not bode well for those same people to be "smart enough" to work together to get Reid out of office.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:00 pm |
  20. Scott

    It's quite hilarious to what the religion haters, of which a lot of libs are, go non-linear on news articles like this one. Hey religion haters, if there is no God as your claim, then why are going darn near losing it when it comes to your comments about this Mormon broad? Be sure to clean up all the foam once you've stopped foaming-at-the-mouth :)

    Scott

    September 28, 2012 at 9:08 pm |
    • Scott

      That should have said "... to watch the religion haters..."

      Scott

      September 28, 2012 at 9:15 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      When religious people will vote lock step with a candidate that spits on the first amendment and cannot keep his religion out of his politics, then there is just cause to oppose Romney and all who support him. The same thing happened to Perry. We don't want a repeat of George W. Bush.

      September 28, 2012 at 9:26 pm |
    • Ireporttwo

      Hey Scott God is in control right? Well accept that he put Obama in office and stop rebelling against authority. Romans 13 read.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:25 pm |
    • Earthling

      If religious people would keep their nonsense to themselves, people like me wouldn't have anything to say about it. But when they flash it around like a pervert in the schoolyard, you can bet your favorite body part we're going to say something about it.

      September 28, 2012 at 10:32 pm |
    • Wes

      Scott, actually this time you sound like the one who's foaming at the mouth. Or are your communication skills that poor all the time?

      September 28, 2012 at 10:39 pm |
    • Scott

      Absolute correct Ireporttwo. God will put people as evil as Hitler, Mao, Pol Pot and Obama in office if it serves His purpose.

      Scott

      September 28, 2012 at 10:57 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.