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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. *

    Has God forgotten us? Why aren't there prophets today like there used to be? God lives and has not forgotten us. Living prophets once again walk the earth to bring us the light of revelation and scripture and you can see and hear them Saturday and Sunday in General Conference! Tune into LDS.ORG.

    October 5, 2012 at 8:25 am |
    • End Religion

      we'd surely like to forget about the concept of god...

      October 6, 2012 at 5:00 pm |
  2. hammerofastraea

    Thats kinda Native American if I don't say so myself as a full blooded dark skinned Native American.

    October 5, 2012 at 2:34 am |
    • Jesus Christ

      Wha????

      October 5, 2012 at 8:22 am |
      • hammerofastraea

        Fasting cleanses and purifies the flesh so that the spirit can see truth more clearly! Like the gnostics would call freeing the immaterial from the material so that nous may be achieved.

        October 5, 2012 at 9:22 pm |
  3. donner

    At the next debate, Obama needs to look Romney in the eye and ask him to explain planet Kolob to the American people. And that will be the end of the diaper wearing cult member.

    October 5, 2012 at 12:29 am |
    • Jimbo

      I am an ex-mormon. I don't believe in the tenants of the faith or any religion for that matter, but I do know a lot of Mormons are generally very good people with high moral standards. What is Obama's religion??? In the end it doesn't matter so much. What matters is what kind of President will they be. Personally I think the "Kolob believeing" Mormon will do the better job.

      October 5, 2012 at 1:00 am |
    • Jimbo

      Of course ANYBODY with sense would know that I'm STILL a mormon and I'm spreading my pathological LIES just like ALL mormons do.

      October 5, 2012 at 8:23 am |
    • End Religion

      I can't imagine it happening. Politicians rarely answer questions in a straight-forward fashion anyway. He'd either dodge it by covering it up in his "personal beliefs" or he may just ask Obama about the talking snake from his religion. It's a can of worms none wants to open, which is what allows many Christian cult members to vote with a wink and a nod for the "crazy" Mormon.

      October 6, 2012 at 5:06 pm |
  4. Kittn

    Funny, since Mormons believe in multiple gods, that god is made of flesh and blood, that at death 'they' can progress to their own planet-and that jesus christ is not the only way to salvation. They believe in only 3 of the 5 tenants of the christian religion-that is why a mormon baptism isn't recognized by methodist, protestant, lutherans etc. Always wondered how evangelicals ever got past the mormon's not adopting the main christian belief-that our salvation is only through jesus christ. just saying.....And 'they' label Obama who has always been a Christian as an Islamist.... Irony & Hypocrisy

    October 4, 2012 at 9:20 pm |
    • Andrew B.

      Not sure where you got the idea that Mormons don't believe Jesus Christ is the only path to salvation. I live in Utah and I have read their literature and their Book of Mormon. It clearly states in both that the only path to salvation is through Jesus Christ.

      If you want to criticize Mormons, fine, there's plenty to criticize, but do it with the truth bro......

      October 4, 2012 at 11:18 pm |
    • Jimbo

      Andrew B. The point that Kittn is stating is that WE mormons believe in multiple gods. That means we aren't christians. THAT'S the important FACT.

      October 5, 2012 at 8:24 am |
    • Sergio Roa Prado

      We believes in God , the eternal father, and in Jesuchrist our savior: In our prayer we ask and thanks to God in the name of jesuchrist......to us there are only one God to serve, only one savior......the rest are personal commentaries.

      October 5, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
  5. mormoncandidate dot com

    Yeah, Romney's a Mormon, don't you know!?!

    October 4, 2012 at 8:17 pm |
  6. Robert Lawler

    So I guess the worshiping of false idols is a-ok in Mormonism?

    October 4, 2012 at 6:41 pm |
    • End Religion

      the worshiping of false idols is a-ok anywhere, anytime. See you at the ballgame! Or rather, see you at the movies! or rather, see you at the Rolling Stones concert next week!

      October 5, 2012 at 12:50 am |
  7. caesarbc

    Romney did well in the debate because of their fasting... however... he lost the entire Catholic vote because of this childish stunt.

    October 4, 2012 at 6:41 pm |
  8. kiwilogic

    Joseph smith was a convicted fraudster before he started the mormon church...... how the hell can anyone believe his rubbish. I know you need an absence of logic and reason to have faith but come on mormonism is a bigger joke than pretty much all other religions, which are a joke in themselves. All this woman achieved is maybe a little weight loss from not eating, fasting and talking to yourself are not going to help romney win the election, to be honest i wish someone bombed the next debate to take out romney and obama so another front runner can come into the fold, america is a country in decline

    October 4, 2012 at 5:57 pm |
    • Seldom Seen Mike

      Yeah, it is all pretty hard to believe. I read Jon Krakaurs (SP?) book on Mormonism and when I finished it, I couldn't believe how many followers they've amassed.

      He did find some treasure though...

      October 4, 2012 at 10:30 pm |
    • End Religion

      the treasure he found was: gullible people and how willing they are to give him money

      October 5, 2012 at 12:52 am |
  9. melanietoulouse

    a mormon for POTUS?! LOL of the LOL! Wake up guys! mormons baptize dead people, believe Jesus and John the Baptist came to America... Yeah, sure they could walk on water!:-) They are polygamist, too!;-) I've been to Utah and SLC: you have to see it, to believe it! Prez-Obama will win, yesss!

    October 4, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
    • Seldom Seen Mike

      Most Mormons are NOT polygamists, idiot. I've been to SLC and all over the canyon country of Utah and I've never met a Mormon I didn't like. They're decent people.

      However, they shouldn't be voting for Romney just because of of his religious views.

      October 4, 2012 at 5:19 pm |
  10. DWN

    Mormonism doesn't have the same Christ as the Bible. The Bible says Jesus was born in Bethlehem. The Book of Mormon says Jesus was born in Jerusalem. Yet Joseph Smith said the Book of Mormon was the most perfect book on earth! Christ said he was the bread that came down from heaven. Bethlehem is sometimes translated "house of bread." Even Mormon leaders have said they worship a different Jesus than the traditional Jesus of the rest of us Christains. Its either the Jesus of the Bible, born in Bethlehem or the Jesus created by Joe Smith, Sidney Rigdon, and Oliver Cowdery that was supposedly born in Jerusalem. You can't have it both ways. Will the real Jesus please stand up? Oh, by the way, the Mormon version of Jesus destroyed many cities in the Americas at, killing perhaps millions of mythical people. It is painfully clear that the Mormon Jesus that was created in the late 1820's is a fake.

    October 4, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
    • DWN

      Check it out for yourselves. Alma 7:10 says Christ would be born in Jerusalem. You might say, well, that was just a man speaking. Beginning in Alma 7:9 I will quote and you will see that it was supposedly the Holy Spirit talking. " But behold, the Spirit hath said this much unto me, saying: Cry unto this people saying - Repent ye, and prepare the way of the Lord, and walk in his paths, which are straight; for behold, the kingdom of heaven is at hand, and the Son on God cometh upon the face of the earth, And behold, he shall be born of Mary at Jerusalem" In the Book of Mormon the Holy Spirit testifies falsely! What could be a worse or more shameful fraud. Counterfeiting the Holy Spirit is an incredibly serious sin.

      October 4, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
    • lroy

      Agreed. But as a devout pro-life Catholic, even I will fast and pray (and light a candle) for Romney to get elected if it'd help. After all, God help us if Obama is re-elected. Our Lady of the Americas pray for us.

      October 4, 2012 at 5:13 pm |
    • Jason

      Bethlehem is a suburb of Jerusalem. In the Book of Mormon, Alma was referencing the much larger and well known city of Jerusalem so that his audience could have a better understanding of where Christ's birth would be. It's kind of like me saying that I'm from Phoenix when technically I lived in Gilbert. I don't think that would be considered dishonest.

      October 4, 2012 at 9:41 pm |
    • Sergio Roa Prado

      When a city is near to another it produce a Conurbation, in simple words two cities are the same. That is the case with Jerusalem and Belen.

      October 5, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
  11. marcindc

    The way you supporters of the nation’s community organizer are whining and name calling about a minor side story concerning one woman’s faith and views says more about you than anything else. You Obama supporters keep clutching your skewed oversampled polls, pretend your community organizer has not been President for the last four years and keep chanting "Hope and Change" and "Forward"...we'll see how that works out in November. Without the cover and pampering by the press, last night’s debate clearly showed your faux liberal god for what he truly is...a man clearly in over his head and incapable of distinguishing between talking points, policies, and facts. I wish we had achieved what the community organizer had promised the American people in 2008 and not what we ended up with, another lying corrupt politician dedicated to a government of the lies, by the lies, and for the lies of the liberal contingent of the Democratic Party.

    October 4, 2012 at 10:33 am |
    • Peteyroo

      MarredCindy, first let me apologize for what Mother Nature has done to you and all the other conservative/evangelical bedwetters you associate with. When she set evolution in motion lo these many years/eons ago, she stacked the deck against you. You made sure that you and your friends got single-digit IQs and no imagination while giving atheists and moderate, decent, loving, kind Democrats all the brains and good looks. She also made sure you could be on your knees while performing your two favorite activities (praying is one of them). You should thank her for that.

      October 4, 2012 at 11:02 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Petey, way to dismantle the opposition on the strength of your position and the record of your candidate.

      October 5, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
  12. Atheism is healthy for children and other living things

    exactly :-)

    October 3, 2012 at 11:49 pm |
  13. Chance

    I live in Utah, I want out of Utah! its not the land, its beautiful, its the sheeple! the law they push on eveyone who lives here, and there is no separation of church and state. I want out to get away from the mormons, I certainly do not want to see one in teh white house. If ya think its jsut another religion, why not do some digging? its no more bizarre than any other, aside from Scientology, but its not what anyone would consider christian, at least not any christian, but the mormons argue that they are. I would suggest a book called the god makers, and another called no man knows my history. I dare you to read them. The church has banned them, no member is allowed to discuss them and reading them can get you booted from teh church. No man especially is great, it has all the foot notes, and those tell you where, page number, edition, everything, in the churches own history and books, where the information is, and what was said or done. They hate facts, and I hate living under their greedy self righteous thumb.

    October 3, 2012 at 6:09 pm |
    • marcindc

      Here's a clue genius...instead of wasting your time commenting on a blog about hating where you live...take out a map and find the nearest major interstate highway and start driving towards somewhere like San Francisco or Los Angles...I'm sure there are a lot of Utah residents willing to assist you in your moving plans if it’s too overwhelming for you to figure out yourself.

      October 4, 2012 at 10:45 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      If you move to California you don't even have to be a legal American citizen to get free services from the tax payers and you can live any way you want.

      October 5, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
  14. DWN

    If any of you are under the mistaken notion that Mormonism is a christian denomination I submit the following from the 1984 Melchizedek Priesthood Manual "If we get our salvation, we shall have to pass by him (Joseph Smith) if we enter into our glory, it will be through the authority he has received. We cannot get around him." Christ is the Melchizedek Priest! Yet Mormonism and Freemasonry think they get to steal it away from him.

    Or how about this ridiculous statement? "The whole Earth shall bear me witness that I, like the towering rock in the midst of the ocean, which has withstood the mighty surges of the warring waves for centuries, am impregnable ... I combat the errors of ages; I meet the violence of mobs; I cope with illegal proceedings from executive authority; I cut the gordian knot of powers, and I solve mathematical problems of universities, with truth - diamond truth; and God is my right hand man." (D.H.C., Vol. 6, p. 78). Now if that isn't an ego fully out of control, what is? Above God now? Smith was a lying lunatic.

    Or how about this anti-christian lunacy? "I have more to boast of than ever any man had. I am the only man that has ever been able to keep a whole church together since the days of Adam. A large majority of the whole have stood by me. Neither Paul, John, Peter, nor Jesus ever did it. I boast that no man ever did such a work as I. The followers of Jesus ran away from Him; but the Latter-day Saints never ran away from me yet.” (History of The Church, 6:408–409 " (D.H C., vol. 6, p. 408-409)., Smith. Well, if he is greater than God the Father, it should be no surprise that Smith thought he was greater than God the Son!

    But I guess since CNN has copped out and calls mohammad a prophet...

    October 3, 2012 at 4:55 pm |
    • marcindc

      So sayeth DWN the anonymous blogger and self anointed prophet of truth...Amen! I’m guessing the Mormon faith along with other religious faiths will be around and remembered much longer than the self important ramblings of the anonymous prophet DWN and his/her religious bigotry have died and return to dust.

      October 4, 2012 at 10:58 am |
    • DWN

      So marcindc, do facts matter in your universE? PS. I am a bible based Christian. I am not going to show quotes if they aren't substantiated. So which of the above quotes were not accurate? I am guessing you have no idea what you are talking about.

      October 4, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
  15. DWN

    Lin Sea, all of those not related to Smith that saw with their "spiritual eyes" the phoney golden plates left the church. Every last one of them. Martin Harris, who was tricked into paying for the printing of the Book of Mormon, changed his religious beliefs a half dozen or more time after becoming a Mormon. Oliver Cowdery, who put most of the Book of Mormon on paper left as well. Smith called him an adulterer and counterfeiter. According to Joseph Smith "Such characters as McLellin, John Witmer, David Witmer, Oliver Cowdry, and Martin Harris are too mean to mention; and we had liked to have forgotten them." History of the Church, Vol 3, p232

    October 3, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
    • Pr0tege

      What you fail to mention however, is that many of them (Martin Harris and Oliver Cowdery included) later came back and rejoined the church. Additionally, none of the 3 witnesses of the Book of Mormon (Martin Harris, Oliver Cowdery or David Whitmer) ever denied seeing the plates...they all left over other disagreements.

      October 4, 2012 at 12:56 am |
    • DWN

      Why did they leave in the first place. The chaos around Smith and Rigdon was incredible. Smith and Rigdon fought all the time. Smith's men claim an Angel threw Rigdon around a room and badly injured him. What in actuality happened was Smith's goons beat him up. They may have been the same goons who destroyed the printing press of the Nauvoo Expositor, the fledgling newspaper that was going to expose Smith's rampant polygamy, sometimes with young teenage girls. Why even try to defend the indefensible? Smith was against freedom of the press, he was a polygamist, which he lied about, and he shot two people while attempting a jailbreak. That would make him a murderer as well. Smith was a false prophet and a consummate scoundrel.

      October 4, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
    • DWN

      The chaos around Smith and Rigdon was incredible. Smith and Rigdon fought all the time. Smith's men claim an Angel threw Rigdon around a room and badly injured him. What in actuality happened was Smith's goons beat him up. They may have been the same goons who destroyed the printing press of the Nauvoo Expositor, the fledgling newspaper that was going to expose Smith's rampant polygamy, sometimes with young teenage girls. Why even try to defend the indefensible? Smith was against freedom of the press, he was a polygamist, which he lied about, and he shot two people while attempting a jailbreak. That would make him a murderer as well.

      October 4, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
  16. derp

    This seems like a good idea. Every time I see mormon women on TV they are fat. Fasting would be good for them. Mormon men deserve better. At least one of their six wives should be thin.

    October 3, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
    • lroy

      Hate to break it to you pal, but there are fat Catholics, fat Jews, even fat Muslims (at least in this country). We're just a fat country.

      October 4, 2012 at 5:18 pm |
  17. Patricksday

    Corporate America has shown how much they care about the American workers, they have downsized them to the point where they now do the work of two people, multi tasking out of their minds, while the CEO's continue to get Bonus money and raises, not making any sacrifices what so ever, and some how its the working classes fault the economy is the way it is? The Rich are going to do just fine regardless of who is President, they have proven they have no interest in Job Creation with living wages after 10 years of record Tax Breaks. I dont want to be shopping for medicare coverage with a voucher at 70 years of age with health issues. Say NO to CEO Romney, America is not for sale.

    October 3, 2012 at 1:07 pm |
  18. amlowlife

    Why does she get all the pub? I just sent out an email to my contacts list urging them to turn the debate into a drinking game. Every time they say "America" ya gotta take a drink. I wouldn't recommend fasting prior to this, people...

    October 3, 2012 at 11:46 am |
    • lroy

      Drink what? Devout Mormons are not allowed to drink coffee or tea or any alcohol. I don't even think they can have chocolate milk (now THAT'S strange).

      October 4, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
    • jerd

      i'm a former mormon. left and never looking back. i just have to clarify, chocolate milk is an okay thing to drink. caffeine is not prohibited. and mormon puhSSy is awesome.

      October 4, 2012 at 8:36 pm |
  19. amlowlife

    “I am just a woman who believes that God loves this country and his hand is in whatever happens.”

    So, if Obama should win then it was god's will so what's the big whoop?

    October 3, 2012 at 11:19 am |
    • Zeus Christ

      exactly!

      Just sit back and let god do his magic.

      October 3, 2012 at 12:42 pm |
    • teresa

      Hello, God does not pick anyone to be president, just like he did not pick your husband- wife- job-car-ect. Prayer is the souls sincere desire and I am LDS and my prayer is for the American people. God gave free agency and would never interfere with it for anyone on anything. The scriptures are full of wicked Kings, hello he did not choose them. People choose and some times they choose wrong and place their faith in some one who is deceptive. They pay and so will the nation. So pray you know the difference. That he will answer for you, but first try believing in him and then choose one that will reflect his wishes. WE are free to choose, we can loose that God given gift so be smart and less critical. All LDS women are not fat, America women and men can choose that too. So remember before you speak , know what you are talking about,

      October 3, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @teresa

      LOL talk about circular reasoning and confirmatory bias. Are you a poe, or just unaware of how insane your post is?

      October 3, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
    • derp

      @teresa

      Cookoo for cocoa puffs

      October 3, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @teresa,

      apparenly you haven't seen the ads for christianmingle.com.

      "Find God's choice for you ... " etc.

      October 3, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
    • Becca

      All Catholics and Protestants should fast and pray that Gov. Romney wins. Our country needs a change.
      God Bless.

      October 4, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • DWN

      Mormonism is neither Protestant or Catholic. But to be frank about it, it is very nearly Catholic in that Catholicism and Mormonism each mistakenly believes they were given authority directly from God and believe they have the so called Keys of Peter. Neither really believe other Christian groups have the Authority to Baptize. They both stumble when Matt 18:18 is applied in context. Matt 18:1 makes it pretty clear that Jesus was speaking to all the disciples and not just Peter saying in verse 18"...Whatever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."

      October 5, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
  20. Brian Jenkins

    Great idea. This is the only thing that can help Romney win. More prayer, more fasting. All other options (logic, ideas, etc) haven't worked.

    October 3, 2012 at 11:00 am |
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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.