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Romney’s loss closes out ‘Mormon moment’
Mitt Romney attending church on Sunday earlier this year.
November 8th, 2012
03:20 PM ET

Romney’s loss closes out ‘Mormon moment’

By Dan Merica, CNN

Washington (CNN) – Mitt Romney’s defeat appears to close out a years-long “Mormon moment,” a period of national fascination with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

It has also provoked Mormon disappointment; Romney would have been first Latter-day Saint in the White House, culminating a decades-long process of growing Mormon acceptance and influence.

But prominent Mormons and religion experts say Mormons should be heartened that Romney’s candidacy appeared to help mainstream the relatively young faith, which was founded in 1830 in upstate New York.

“Part of the Mormon moment was curiosity and much of that curiosity has been satisfied,” said John Green, professor of political science at the University of Akron.

“There will always be people who disagree with them,” Green said, “but the sense is that this community is part of the broad middle of American society.”

As stories about the LDS Church graced the covers of magazines and front pages of newspapers, the church’s press office was working overtime to answer questions from around the globe. A church that prefers to keep private became very public.

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“Without question there has been an increase in interest in the Church over the past several years,” church spokesman Michael Purdy told CNN. “Although there have been exceptions, this attention has given people the opportunity to know who we are and what we believe.”

It also meant more publicity for aspects of the church that many Mormons would prefer not dwell on, like the church’s onetime practice of polygamy (the church banned the practice more than 100 years ago) and its denial of the priesthood to black members until the late 1970s.

But even the uncomfortable questions were good for the church, said Richard Bushman, a Mormon scholar who has served as a local Mormon leader.

“So long as those objections and criticisms were kept under wraps, they just sort of festered there,” Bushman said. “Getting them out in the open where people could speak candidly, that in a way clears the atmosphere.”

Coverage of Mormonism also led to some level of misinformation. One example: On the TV show “The View,” on October 18, 2012, Whoopi Goldberg asked Ann Romney, Mitt Romney’s wife, about how she would relate to soldiers.

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“As first lady, if you get the job, it’s going to entail a lot of things, and one of those things is going to be talking to the mothers whose children are coming home in bags, you know, from wars,” Goldberg said. “Now, I know - I believe that your religion doesn’t allow you to go fight.”

Goldberg was wrong. Mormons are actually known to enlist in the military at higher levels than others. “No, that's not correct,” Ann Romney told Goldberg. “We have many, many members of our faith that are serving in armed services.”

Purdy, the church spokesman, says such exchanges were ultimately beneficial.

“A good deal of misinformation has been replaced with a more accurate picture of the Church, its doctrines, and its members across the world,” Purdy said. “That is a good thing for all involved and we look forward to these opportunities continuing.”

But with Romney’s loss, interest in Mormonism is expected to dwindle. Joanna Brooks, a well known Mormon blogger and author says it’s only a matter of time until that interest returns.

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

“There have been many Mormon moments, and there will be many more to come,” she said. “Mormonism remains a vibrant and distinctive force on the American religious landscape, and as a young religion with a new global reach, the Mormon story is still unfolding.”

The last Mormon moment, she said, was a good one: “This is a moment in which the nation proved that it was capable of having a discussion about candidates and platforms without openly subjecting either candidate to a religious test.”

Though Romney’s faith garnered plenty of coverage - from Time’s cover story “The Mormon Identity,” to New York Magazine’s “Where is the Mormonism in Mitt Romney?,” - neither the campaigns nor outside groups made much, if any, mention of it.

Romney’s bid seemed to improve relations between Mormons and evangelical Christians, many of whom have long seen the LDS Church as a cult. In May, Romney spoke at Liberty University, founded by Jerry Falwell.

Follow the CNN Belief Blog on Twitter

Weeks before the election, too, the Rev. Billy Graham met with Romney for the first time and removed “Mormonism” from a section of his website devoted to cults.

“The Billy Graham business, for me that was symbolic that evangelicals instead of just dismissing Mormonism, (they) now need to talk a little more about what they mean,” Bushman said.

According to exit polls on Tuesday, 79% of white evangelical Christians voted for Mitt Romney in 2012. That’s an even higher share of the white evangelical vote than John McCain got in 2008, when he was the Republican presidential nominee.

“From the point of view of religious tolerance and acceptance, there were some really positive trends,” Green said. “It does suggest that the path towards greater religious tolerance has continued.”

Green raised the subject with his students after Tuesday’s election. At the end of the conversation, Green said one non-Mormon student’s comment encapsulated the strides Mormonism made in the last year.

“They aren’t any stranger,” the student joked, “than anyone else.”

– CNN’s Allison Brennan contributed to this report.

- Dan Merica

Filed under: 2012 Election • Mitt Romney • Mormonism • Politics

soundoff (1,823 Responses)
  1. baconaddict

    billy graham can remove mormonism from his list of cults, but that doesn't change reality.

    frankly, i'm not sure why the country is fascinated by him in the first place. soon he'll go back to the dust as we all will.

    in any case, anyone who DOESN'T think mormonism is a cult needs to take a few minutes to read about the destruction this cult causes on lives of ex members.

    http://www.exmormon.org/

    A site for those who are

    Questioning their faith in the Mormon Church

    And for those who need support

    As they transition their lives to

    a normal life.

    We are not affiliated with any religion

    and we do not advocate any religion.

    November 12, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
  2. Janet

    As a mormon reading a lot of the ignorant, mean-spirited comments on this board helps confirm for me why I am delighted to see the "mormon moment" pass. Ignorance and spite make for an ugly mix and Mitt Romney and mormons generally are better off without having this crap spouted about the church.

    November 11, 2012 at 7:21 pm |
    • Cj

      As a fellow Mormon, I second you.

      November 12, 2012 at 12:12 am |
    • Jonah

      Yes, I third you, but, I can't bear all the defamation and libelous sm ut and lies to go without an answer. Also, I believe that many honest and si ncere people read these posts, but don't comment, so it is for their sake that I think someone ought to give them the truth. This is a very depressing place, however, sort of the abode of the da mned and I don't blame anyone for not staying long. I recommend mormon.org for a spiritual uplift.

      November 12, 2012 at 11:45 am |
    • baconaddict

      people are better off without the cr ap the mormon church spouts off.

      which, is no crazier than any religion if we're totally honest. but...

      http://www.exmormon.org/whylft44.htm

      an interesting take from a byu graduate and former stake/ward bishop?

      November 12, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
    • Jenny Porter

      Wow, that's a lot of anger you have going on there Janet, CJ and Jonah...seems you can be angry and tell non-mormons off, but can't take it. Hmmmmm.
      You're just so, "in the world, but not OF the world." Seems like a belief such as that, would indeed hinder your growth in the real world.
      Grow up people. We can hate your cult as much as we like to; just like you hate anybody that says you're not going to become Gods....

      November 12, 2012 at 6:17 pm |
    • End Religion

      Yes, Mormons, back into the safety of your echo chambers.

      November 12, 2012 at 6:54 pm |
  3. diana horton

    i don't have a problem with mormons. i have a problem with the book of mormon. i think it is a made up bunch of crap. i think mitt spoke as if he would bring alot of his religion to the white house. and i think that is what scared alot of women. everytime he opened his mouth i kept thinking what about seperation of church and state. for that reason alone i was glad he lost.

    November 11, 2012 at 12:14 pm |
    • Jonah

      "And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost. " ( Moroni 10:4 )

      God, himself, will reveal the truth of the Book of Mormon through the power of the Holy Ghost. I testify in Christ's holy name that it is true.

      November 11, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
    • End Religion

      lol@jonah

      November 11, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
    • No Rombo

      I agree Mormonism is a Cult and Joseph Smith was a drunk treasure hunter. Meadow Mountain Massacre was a horrible tragedy made worse by the LDS after they removed the cross from the memorial. The descendants were outraged at the callous nature of the LDS church. I guess this election proves their magic underwear does not work after all.

      November 11, 2012 at 2:47 pm |
    • Kev

      No Rombo Latter-Day-Saints don't believe in magic underwear. The church didn't endorse either candidate, and there were quite a number of LDS, including myself, who voted for Obama, so what are you talking about?

      November 11, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
    • Jonah

      No rombo, are you a descendant of someone who was killed in mountain meadows? Well, I am a descendant of someone who was killed by the mobs in Missouri. You have no right to talk about things that you know nothing about. You speak as if those people in the wagon train were innocent. They were not! They bragged the entire length of the state of Utah that they were the very mobsters who had rap ed, plundered and murdered the mormons in Missouri. They had blood on their hands! My own great, great grandfather, Edmund Durfee was shot in the back while he tried to herd his family to safety in Far West. Then, they began to brag that they were going to meet up with a military force in California and come back and murder all the mormons in Utah! The Saints had to take them seriously. They had already lost many dear ones at these peoples hands! In great alarm they decided to strike first.

      November 12, 2012 at 11:54 am |
    • End Religion

      that is hilarious. A religion founded by a drunk treasure hunter! It would be telling except that there's another religion founded by a science fiction writer who, on record, claimed he was going to start a religion, Scientology, which i still "practiced" by thousands today. I just never will understand how some can be so easily duped. it's not as if the evidence that Mormonism and Scientology are hoaxes isn't overwhelming and easy to find.

      November 12, 2012 at 7:39 pm |
    • End Religion

      unfortunately jonah the facts of the slaughter do not align with your church's propaganda on the matter. As a multi-generational I suppose you'll never bother seeking sources outside the church or using critical thinking but you might want to consider it. i would say you're not doing anyone any favours staying ignorant on religion and history but that would be wrong - you're benefiting Mormonism by staying dumb, and that's just the way they want you. Keep tithing, my friend!

      November 12, 2012 at 7:45 pm |
    • Bob

      So, Jonah, you clearly can't produce a prophecy with dates in it. K, thanks. You deluded twit. J. Smith sure conned your lot well.

      November 12, 2012 at 8:32 pm |
    • Kev

      So Bob, if an event was prophesied and the event came to pass but no specific date was given, it never even happened? You could question the validity of the prophesy, but questioning it doesn't automatically debunk it.

      November 12, 2012 at 10:29 pm |
  4. DrGuest

    I know one belief The Mormon Faith apparently has no problem with....LYING! It didn't seem to bother Romney to tell lie after lie after lie after lie after.....lol

    November 11, 2012 at 8:38 am |
    • Jonah

      My, what an imagination you have!

      November 11, 2012 at 10:29 am |
    • No Rombo

      Dr. Truth
      Romney was the Great Mormon God of lies! Go home Mitt Willard Romney your church and religion will have to wait on another planet in the afterlife for you to rule.

      November 11, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
    • Monomachos

      It was the Obama campaign / MSNBC that adopted the tactic of calling its opponent a liar – when in fact Romney did not lie at all. The tactic is called "the Big Lie" – just keep repeating it until enough foolish people believe it, with religious bigots, looking for anything to discredit Romney, the first to accept it. The Obama campaign repeatedly lied about about Romney and what he would do ('eliminate abortions"; "take away contraception", give a tax break to the rich" "raise taxes on the middle class". The sad thing is that so many Americans fell for it.

      November 12, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
  5. Jonah

    “Since the organization of the Church of Christ, … on the 6th of April, 1830, we have had the satisfaction of witnessing the spread of the truth into various parts of our land, notwithstanding its enemies have exerted their unceasing diligence to stop its course and prevent its progress; though evil and designing men have combined to destroy the innocent, … yet the glorious Gospel in its fullness is spreading and daily gaining converts; and our prayer to God is, that it may continue, and numbers be added of such as shall be eternally saved.”
    “The Standard of Truth has been erected; no unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing; persecutions may rage, mobs may combine, armies may assemble, calumny may defame, but the truth of God will go forth boldly, nobly, and independent, till it has penetrated every continent, visited every clime, swept every country, and sounded in every ear, till the purposes of God shall be accomplished, and the Great Jehovah shall say the work is done.” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith, Chapter 11: The Organization and Destiny of the True and Living Church)

    November 11, 2012 at 8:32 am |
    • Bob

      Jonah: just more from J Smith's con artist imagination. Prophecy is worthless without dates. Anyone can say bad stuff will happen and be right eventually. Show the dates in the prophecy or stow it.

      November 11, 2012 at 11:17 am |
    • eric calderone

      In the end, the God of the LDS church is incompatible with that of traditional, orthodox Christianity. An exalted man who lives on a planet near the star Kolob is far away from the omnipotent, omnipresent, eternal and unchanging God of Christianity. This fact is vitally important, for the LDS church and the Christian Church have two very different Gods. If one of those Gods is true, the other must necessarily be false – a creation of one's man's imagination.

      November 11, 2012 at 12:29 pm |
    • Jonah

      1 Verily, thus saith the Lord concerning the wars that will shortly come to pass, beginning at the rebellion of South Carolina, which will eventually terminate in the death and misery of many souls;
      2 And the time will come that war will be poured out upon all nations, beginning at this place.
      3 For behold, the Southern States shall be divided against the Northern States, and the Southern States will call on other nations, even the nation of Great Britain, as it is called, and they shall also call upon other nations, in order to defend themselves against other nations; and then war shall be poured out upon all nations.
      4 And it shall come to pass, after many days, slaves shall rise up against their masters, who shall be marshaled and disciplined for war. (Doctrine and Covenants, Doctrine and Covenants, Section 87)

      This prophesy was made in December of 1832, nearly 30 years before the civil war began.

      November 11, 2012 at 12:37 pm |
    • Jonah

      Amen, Eric. The protestant God was a creation of Constantine, a prophet of God? No! He was a rank pagan and he fused Greek mysticism with a little christianity and invented the god of the nicene creed!

      November 11, 2012 at 12:42 pm |
    • Keeping It Real

      Jonah,

      "... some insist that as early as 1832 no one but Joseph Smith could have known that the United States could be plunged into a civil war. The fact is, not far from Smith's Kirtland, Ohio headquarters, a newspaper called the Painesville Telegraph printed a story from the New York Courier and Enquirer ent'itled "The Crisis." The article spoke of the "probabilities of dismemberment" stemming from discontent in South Carolina and Georgia over states rights. It is interesting to note that the date of this article is Friday, December 21,1832, just four days before Smith received his alleged "prophecy." –http://www.mrm.org/civil-war

      November 11, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
    • End Religion

      lol@jonah

      November 11, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • eric calderone

      Constantine? Constantine's christian mother, St. Helena, raised him with Christian beliefs. In 313AD he signed the Edict of Milan with ended Roman persecution of the Church. It is absurd to think Constantine attempted to paganize the Church (and you offer no evidence, as you cannot offer what does not exist). In 361AD the emperor Julian the Apostante attempted to bring back paganism. This would have been unnecessary if the Church had become pagan under Constantine.

      A careful study of the first 300 years of Christianity reveals that orthodox Christian doctrines such as the Eucharist, Apostollic authority and the Pope as successor of St. Peter, were believed by Christians from the very beginning. They certainly did not arise after Constantine. And Protestantism first appeared in the 1500s, about1200 years after the Nicene Creed was codified.

      November 11, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • No Rombo

      Jonah,

      Did Joseph Smith tell you he was really a drunk treasure hunter from New York who started a false religion? Jesus does not condone or accept anything about the LDS church. When Romney dies some day he will not be inheriting his own planet, so stop being fooled by the great lye that is the Mormon church! P.S. Magic Underwear Please!!!!

      November 11, 2012 at 3:16 pm |
    • Bob

      Jonah, you fool. Way to miss the point. It whooshed right over your stupid deluded mind. WHOOOOOOOOOSH.

      Let's try again. Show the dates quoted in the prophecies. . Anyone can prophecy that a war or other bad stuff will happen, and be right at some point. If no dates, then kindly stuff your invalid claims.

      November 11, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
    • Jonah

      Eric, we don't need to rely on "a careful study of the first 300 years of christianity". We have the words of Luke.

      21 Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened,
      22 And the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and a voice came from heaven, which said, Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased. (New Testament, Luke, Chapter 3)

      The truth is clear. The Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are three separate and distinct beings! Constatine didn't know any doctrine. He just wanted people to stop fighting over doctrine, so he accepted whatever the majority seemed to want – doctrine by committee! They were probably all drunk at the time!

      November 12, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
    • End Religion

      the truth is anything but clear. The good book is a complete fabrication.

      November 12, 2012 at 7:46 pm |
    • Bob

      So, Jonah, you clearly can't produce a prophecy with dates in it, that actually got an event and date right. K, thanks. You deluded twit. J. Smith sure conned your lot well.

      November 12, 2012 at 8:34 pm |
  6. Jonah

    Today, some religious fundamentalists continue to rail against Mormons, while coastal sophisticates scoff at their earnest approach to life, religion, and family. Yet the methodical Mormon way, which stresses education, ambition, and charitable giving, has succeeded in ways equaled by few religious groups. Mormons enjoy levels of education and wealth higher than the national average, for example. Some 54 percent of LDS men and 44 percent of women have secured postsecondary education; the numbers for the general American population are 37 percent and 28 percent, respectively. Mormons also enjoy the nation’s highest rate of charitable giving.

    November 10, 2012 at 10:17 pm |
    • Jonah

      http://www.city-journal.org/2012/22_4_snd-mormons.html

      November 10, 2012 at 10:18 pm |
    • End Religion

      100% of all LDS members are delusional.

      November 11, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
    • Bob

      Jonah: all of that is non-sequitur. It is the evidence for your beliefs and the tenets of Mormonism that is lacking. Booked that cheap flight to Kolob yet?

      November 12, 2012 at 8:36 pm |
  7. Jonah

    What do Mormons believe? Many of the comments on this blog are made by people who are ignorant of the beliefs of Mormons or who are down right hostile to the church. Our beliefs are summarized in 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”

    November 10, 2012 at 10:09 am |
    • Mickey1313

      You also believe you become the god of your own world upon your death, magical underware, and that the us government owes lds something for not helping the criminal (pedophile polygimst fraud) j. Smith. Nice spin on you nuts belief.

      November 10, 2012 at 11:30 am |
    • End Religion

      You believe in a transparently obvious fraud.

      November 10, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
    • pastmorm

      Who cares what mormons believe anymore? The world knows how crazy they are...they believe they will become gods. Anyone in their right mind will concede that such a belief indicates a mental illness.

      Goodbye mormon church! In a few decades your temples will be sold to become bars and dance clubs.

      November 10, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
    • Jonah

      Mickey, i suppose you think it is better to sit on a cloud FOR ALL ETERNITY and play a harp? BORING!!!!! Why a harp? Why not something more exciting like a trombone or a cazoo?

      November 11, 2012 at 8:23 am |
    • eric calderone

      The Articles of Faith have little to do with Mormon beliefs. Core Mormon beliefs such as Joseph Smith being a prophet and apostle,the notion of a total apostasy of the Christian Church, celestian marriage and baptism for the dead, that God is a physical being, and continuing revelation, are found in the Doctrine and Covenants and Pearl of Great Price (both of which Smith authored and which are considered Sacred Scripture).

      Joseph Smith came from a Protestant family, and protestantism was a major source of his ideas. He carried over many protestant errors into Mormonism: such as the rejection of the Eucharist, the Papacy, the Marian doctrines and the 7 deuterocanonical books.

      Smith also drew from Adventism: he even believed the world would come to an end in 1890.

      Joseph Smith also entered into Free Masonry and introduced versions of the Masonic ceremonies into Mormonism.

      November 11, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
  8. Jonah

    Members and missionaries from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints along the East Coast are organizing projects to help those affected by Hurricane Sandy. Church members in areas hit by the storm have worked to help neighbors with immediate needs, including clearing trees and debris. In areas less affected by the storm, members organized clothing and supply drives in their communities.

    1of17 Missionaries in yellow Mormon Helping Hands vests prepare to clean up Hurricane Sandy debris in Staten Island and Rockaway© All rights reserved.
    New York

    Missionaries and Church members in New York have been out in force since the storm subsided, providing assistance in all five New York City boroughs and beyond. In the first five days following the storm, more than 3,800 volunteers worked over 37,500 hours.

    On Long Island, Church members have been organizing crews to look for neighborhood homes with fallen trees and help to clear them out. They have also delivered fliers to neighbors. “We want them to know we are willing and able to help,” said Mark Hardman, a local leader in the area.

    On Saturday and Sunday, 200 missionaries and 300 Church members worked to clear debris from some of the thousands of flooded homes in the five boroughs. New York New York South Mission President Kevin Calderwood said debris was stacked 10 feet high on some streets, and missionaries helped sanitation workers load trucks where they could.

    November 10, 2012 at 9:56 am |
    • Jonah

      http://www.mormonnewsroom.org/article/new-round-of-cleanup-projects-scheduled-by-mormon-helping-hands

      November 10, 2012 at 9:58 am |
    • pastmorm

      Wow, didn't Jesus teach us to NOT wear our good acts on our sleeves? So...jonah, you're trying to make people like the mormon church by showing what they do...charity-wise? Like NO other church or organization helps other people? How sad that your mormon church is sinking so fast that you have to brag about it's charities to make people feel good about it and ignore how it treats women, blacks and gays...By the way, you SO lost this year with people deciding on the RIGHTS of gays by popular votes. HA HA!!!

      November 10, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  9. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    November 10, 2012 at 7:43 am |
    • Huebert

      If it could you wouldn't be afraid to test it.

      November 10, 2012 at 10:01 am |
    • Simran

      Yup, prayer changes things. It just makes it more likely that you would die if you are being prayed for after a CABG surgery and YOU KNOW IT!
      Ever heard of the Templeton foundation study?

      http://www.templeton.org/pdfs/press_releases/060407STEP_paper.pdf

      November 10, 2012 at 10:09 am |
    • Simran

      And then of course, no body ever dared to test again!!!

      November 10, 2012 at 10:10 am |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things", but your assertions regarding atheism and prayer are unfounded. Using my Idiomatic Expression Equivalency module (IEE), the expression that best matches the degree to which your assertions may represent truths is: "TOTAL FAIL".

      I see that you repeat these unfounded statements with high frequency. Perhaps the following book can help you:

      I'm Told I Have Dementia: What You Can Do... Who You Can Turn to...
      by the Alzheimer's Disease Society

      November 10, 2012 at 11:57 am |
    • TrollAlert

      "Ronald Regonzo" who degenerates to:
      "Salvatore" degenerates to:
      "Douglas" degenerates to:
      "truth be told" degenerates to:
      "Thinker23" degenerates to:
      "Atheism is not healthy ..." degenerates to:
      "another repentant sinner" degenerates to:
      "Dodney Rangerfield" degenerates to:
      "tina" degenerates to:
      "captain america" degenerates to:
      "Atheist Hunter" degenerates to:
      "Anybody know how to read? " degenerates to:
      "just sayin" degenerates to:
      "ImLook'nUp" degenerates to:
      "Kindness" degenerates to:
      "Chad" degenerates to
      "Bob" degenerates to
      "nope" degenerates to:
      "2357" degenerates to:
      "WOW" degenerates to:
      "fred" degenerates to:
      "!" degenerates to:
      "pervert alert" is the degenerate.

      This troll is not a christian.. .

      November 11, 2012 at 9:19 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`!

      November 11, 2012 at 9:25 am |
    • baconaddict

      tell that to all your jehovahs witness brethren (that's right, they sprang forth from the nutty millenialist movements from upstate new york just like your batty mormonism) who have lost sons, daughters, mothers, fathers, etc by relying on faith and not blood transfusions.

      November 12, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
  10. LittleHero

    JFK was suspected he would take orders from the pope, and even today if a catholic bishop ran for president, there would be a great deal of discussion. So why was his role as a bishop in the LDS church not even raised – the nutjob fundies were fine calling out his religion, but the fact that he was at such a high position in the church was somehow off limits to the media? This is not the same thing as a pastor or lay minister, but a true power position within a religious denomination with a recent history of oppression and discrimination.

    November 10, 2012 at 1:49 am |
    • Mickey1313

      Because money buys silence. Just like no one mentioned that ann romnys dad was a militant atheist, but mittins had him post mortum baptized. Romny and lds are sycophants. A little hurricane cleanup does not change that

      November 10, 2012 at 11:36 am |
  11. Reality

    Dear Mitt,

    In case you decide to run again, a prayer to replace your current Mormon wanderings.

    The Apostles' Creed 2012 (updated by yours truly based on the studies of NT historians and theologians of the past 200 years)

    Should I believe in a god whose existence cannot be proven
    and said god if he/she/it exists resides in an unproven,
    human-created, spirit state of bliss called heaven?????

    I believe there was a 1st century CE, Jewish, simple,
    preacher-man who was conceived by a Jewish carpenter
    named Joseph living in Nazareth and born of a young Jewish
    girl named Mary. (Some say he was a mamzer.)

    Jesus was summarily crucified for being a temple rabble-rouser by
    the Roman troops in Jerusalem serving under Pontius Pilate,

    He was buried in an unmarked grave and still lies
    a-mouldering in the ground somewhere outside of
    Jerusalem.

    Said Jesus' story was embellished and "mythicized" by
    many semi-fiction writers. A bodily resurrection and
    ascension stories were promulgated to compete with the
    Caesar myths. Said stories were so popular that they
    grew into a religion known today as Catholicism/Christianity
    and featuring dark-age, daily wine to blood and bread to body rituals
    called the eucharistic sacrifice of the non-atoning Jesus.

    Amen
    (References used are available upon request.)

    November 9, 2012 at 11:36 pm |
    • John

      You should believe in God because you feel the existence of the Holy Spirit.

      November 10, 2012 at 12:17 am |
    • Reality

      For added "pizzazz", Catholic theologians divided god the singularity into three persons and invented atonement as an added guilt trip for the "pew people" to go along with this trinity of overseers. By doing so, they made god the padre into god the "filicider".

      November 10, 2012 at 8:45 am |
    • Bob

      Great points, Reality.

      November 11, 2012 at 11:18 am |
  12. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Who is the goony guy behind mitt ?

    November 9, 2012 at 8:44 pm |
  13. Rational Libertarian

    Huebert

    I support FairTax. It's income tax I view as theft.

    November 9, 2012 at 6:17 pm |
  14. Rational Libertarian

    Huebert

    I think the GOP are eventually going to recognize the need to modernize their social platform.

    November 9, 2012 at 6:10 pm |
  15. John

    I believe that God will be much different than the way religion portrays God to be. I pray that God is good and loving. I believe because our father has called me to serve as he has called billions around the world to serve. Yes, we are sheep, and the Master has spoken. To believe is to have hope and faith in the universe that there is much, much more than meets the eye. I see that magic every day, and everywhere. The fact that I breathe this breath is a miracle so powerful I have no option but to search for answers. I sit her and ponder my relevance as our planet circles our sun at 66,000 mph along the fabric of space. I not only see intelligent design, but unfathomable miraculously amazingly incredible design that forces me to ask how and why? And as I pray and those prayers are answered I now know that my existence is a gift that cannot be wasted. Thank you my Father for this blessing of life. I guess to an Atheist these are the babblings of a mad man, but I can only presume that Atheist to ponder the very same questions of existence that we all do, and I know not all Atheist blindly follow the reasoning’s of theoretical science. Atheist, agnostics, and the spiritual have much, much more in common than we’ll ever admit.

    November 9, 2012 at 6:09 pm |
    • Dippy

      John,
      That's the kind of religious drivel that makes me glad I'm an atheist.

      November 9, 2012 at 7:30 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Dippy, I have a question. Can you explain why idiots of the religious ilk are unable to figure out how to make "atheist" plural, if they can even manage to spell the root word correctly?

      November 9, 2012 at 7:32 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      At least this one didn't spell it as athiest.

      athy
      athier
      athiest

      November 9, 2012 at 7:40 pm |
    • Dippy

      And they capitalize it too. It's NOT a proper noun.

      November 9, 2012 at 7:47 pm |
    • Athy

      Bad writing and religious zealotry (do you like that word, folks) seem to go together.

      November 9, 2012 at 7:49 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      "And they capitalize it too. It's NOT a proper noun."

      THANK YOU!

      November 9, 2012 at 7:51 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Athy, "zealotry" is a perfectly fine word and quite apropos.

      November 9, 2012 at 7:52 pm |
    • John

      Why does and atheist express their view on a spiritual blog? To convert believers? Or is it something much deeper? What is it that you're searching for? I suspect the same thing we're all seeking. Continue your search. I suggest prayer. You'll find what you seek much faster with prayer.

      November 10, 2012 at 12:06 am |
    • LittleHero

      John,

      Its because the emperor has no clothes, and its time to say so.

      November 10, 2012 at 12:11 am |
    • John

      Please elaborate...

      November 10, 2012 at 12:20 am |
    • Mickey1313

      John, we atheists reply for 2 main reasons, (at least I do). One, it saddens me that people who have the ability to read the theistic texts themselves, can be duped into believing them. I understand how in the middle east they are brainwashed, because just like roman basics they don't read, they just follow. And two, if the radical theists have the right to bash me and mine for following scientifically backed truth, then atheists have the right to confront theistic nonsense

      November 10, 2012 at 11:49 am |
    • Mickey1313

      Roman basics = roman catholics. My bad.

      November 10, 2012 at 11:52 am |
  16. S. Coffee

    It was more like a bowel movement than anything else. They are a cult of wackjobs and always will be.

    November 9, 2012 at 6:03 pm |
  17. God's Oldest Dreamer

    Get a grip on your dipsticks people! You profuse Christians who proclaim Christ will come again to wage war against the infidels are as dumb futz's being just as worrisome as the Muslims are to many folks. John 18:36 Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not of this world" So devoted christians shut your mouths for Christ's sake! Why would Christ really come back here again for what reasons? His Kingdom is not of this world Christ did proclaim and that is that! Case Closed!

    November 9, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  18. maverick

    USA cannot swear in a president using the book for mormon...

    November 9, 2012 at 5:10 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Yes they can.

      November 9, 2012 at 5:12 pm |
    • bryes

      Nobody wanted to do that in the first place.

      November 9, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
    • Michelle (the good one)

      If people are willing to gen-up a story that Obama is muslim, I know they will go nuts over the facts that a mormon was to be sworn in with a book of mormon.Thank goodness that didn't happen.

      November 9, 2012 at 7:22 pm |
    • Mickey1313

      They shouldn't use any theistic book, it proves that the yolk of theistic slavery is still heavy on this nation.

      November 10, 2012 at 11:55 am |
  19. bryes

    There are a lot of mean and hateful people on this blog. You should be ashamed of yourselves, but you're probably beyond that as well.

    November 9, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
    • just sayin

      "BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH SHAME SHAME I'M SO MUCH MORE MATURE THAN ALL OF YOU, BLAH BLAH BLAH."

      suck it

      November 9, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
    • End Religion

      didn't jeebus suffer so we didn't have to? all we need to do is tell god we're sorry right before we die and we get to go to heaven right beside you. until then we can be as shameless as we wish.

      November 9, 2012 at 11:00 pm |
    • Kev

      Well End Religion, I hope in your case that death doesn't come too suddenly, so that you get your chance to do your death bed repenting.

      November 10, 2012 at 12:13 am |
    • End Religion

      there's nothing to recant. I don't believe god exists. That would be like me suddenly deciding to ask forgiveness from Santa Claus for stopping belief in him at age 12.

      November 10, 2012 at 12:49 am |
    • Kev

      Well End Religion, in that case party to your epicuric delight, if you truly feel there are no consequences to it.

      November 10, 2012 at 1:51 am |
    • Mickey1313

      End religion, I agree. And it is disturbing to know how many people believe jeebus and yhvh are real.

      November 10, 2012 at 11:59 am |
  20. Linda

    Angie Romney is a liar, what denial are you in? He did so on national TV for everyone to see & hear . & yes the Christians who spew hate from their mouths towards Obama are unchristian! I am sick of there self righteousness. Obama is more Christian than any of them. & if you voted Romney & GOP that is your problem. That aside I am sure you mean to be a sweet woman.

    November 9, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
    • John

      While your message is a bit rough around the edges I do agree with your sentiment. You know movement, 'The Mormons for Obama' grew, especially toward the end of the campaign.

      November 9, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Obama supporters are the most self righteous people on the planet.

      November 9, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
    • John

      More so than Tea Party conservatives? I think not.

      November 9, 2012 at 5:02 pm |
    • Huebert

      RL

      There is more than enough self righteousness on both sides.

      November 9, 2012 at 5:07 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      True enough Huebert.

      November 9, 2012 at 5:13 pm |
    • John

      You take it to another level when you think you can tell women what to do with her body and force Christianity into a goverment that was clearly designed to be for all people not just right wing conservatives.

      November 9, 2012 at 5:19 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Romney wants to control your body, Obama wants to steal your money. Neither bode well.

      November 9, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
    • Huebert

      RL

      Well said. Do you think that either party will ever support a libertarian candidate?

      November 9, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Highly unlikely. Both parties are happy with the status quo. A libertarian would shake things up far too much.

      November 9, 2012 at 5:48 pm |
    • John

      It's not stealing if you freely give to help the collective. It's all about perspective. There are places for those that want to keep what they believe is theirs. Not a place I want to go.

      November 9, 2012 at 6:00 pm |
    • Huebert

      RL

      My hope is that the GOP will eventually reject the social conservatism of the religious right and run purely on an economic platform. If they did that they would still have a chance in the general election. Even without the social planks the evangelicals would never vote for a Dem.

      November 9, 2012 at 6:03 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      I don't freely give. A portion of my wages is stolen every week, a larger portion under Obama.

      Also, if you're referring to a militia compound, I wouldn't go there either. However, the choice shouldn't have to be live in a compound or just lay back and allow your money to be stolen.

      November 9, 2012 at 6:05 pm |
    • Huebert

      RL

      It is inappropriate to view taxes as theft. There is a cost to being a part of any society, you pay that cost through your taxes. In return for your taxes you have access to various public works and services.

      November 9, 2012 at 6:11 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Huebert

      I think the GOP is eventually going to recognize the need to modernize their social platform.

      November 9, 2012 at 6:12 pm |
    • John

      The world and our society ask of us, and I freely give what I can, and then some because I believe it is the right thing to do. And because of my beliefs I am blessed. If I believed I was being stolen from I would be an angry, upset individual fighting for a perceived justice. Going through life angry is no way to live, but it is your freedom of course to choose that path. Of course I believe that nothing of this world belongs to me and whatever God blesses me with is his take back at any time. I am here at his will, and I'm thankful for the opportunity to exist.

      November 9, 2012 at 6:17 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Huebert
      I support FairTax. It's income tax I view as theft.

      November 9, 2012 at 6:18 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      John

      There's no god, but there is the sweat on my brow and it's mine. If you want to give away your money, go ahead, that's why charities exist. However, what's mine is mine and I want to keep it.

      November 9, 2012 at 6:24 pm |
    • John

      I support freedom. God gave me free will. This country does have bill to pay, and I'm willing to do my part. I know there is waste, and I know there are causes that I may not support that I pay for, but I do this willingly because this is what it means to be an American. We draw a line in the sand eventually, and I expect I'll have to cross that bridge eventually, but I'm not there yet. Fight the good fight RL. You are in my prayers. God bless you.

      November 9, 2012 at 6:56 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Oh I do hate when people I disagree with are nice to me. I'm a spiteful cynic 24 hours a day so it's difficult for me to reciprocate niceness.

      Take care John (I can't guarantee that this statement is sincere, but let's just assume it is).

      November 9, 2012 at 7:05 pm |
    • John

      Good will to all isn't so hard. Life's choices are limited, but we can choose our mental state, or a least I can. I've spent enough of my days sad, mad, and depressed. Through prayer I was able to see through the dense fog I'd endured for years and now I enjoy the good in this world every day. Best wishes RL.

      November 10, 2012 at 12:13 am |
    • LittleHero

      RL

      How do you define rational libertarianism? Does this fit? You have the right to carry hand grenades, but must take responsibility if you pull the pin?

      I agree that government should not be in the business of controlling behavior (in general), but where do you draw the line?

      If I whip up a couple barrels of Aspirin in my basement (not difficult) – I should be allowed use it myself, but can I sell it?

      November 10, 2012 at 12:26 am |
    • LittleHero

      Seriously, I would like to know your views – I considered myself a libertarian for many years, until I realized that although I would flourish in a system like that, my stupid brother would be raw meat waiting to be picked clean.

      November 10, 2012 at 12:38 am |
    • End Religion

      LittleHero, that is Libertarianism in a nutshell. "I can get mine, by hook or crook, you go make your own way." Seems fair to the selfish. I think many would instead argue that seemingly successful (or rather popular) societies have moved on from a solely "survival of the fittest" outlook. They have social agendas aimed at helping those in need.

      Look at the Bitcoin community for how this plays out. People continually clamour for less government until we take regulation away, then people get ripped off and clamour for government oversight. That community routinely chastises those who are scammed as somehow deserving of it. While those who've been scammed in that arena could use a bit more common sense, the scammer is the one at fault. Libertarianism's take on survival of the fittest is "if you're too stupid to see my scam then I deserve your money and you deserve to be scammed."

      In a Utopian Libertarian town, of course, no one would be scamming. They'd all be honest, forthright, "free people" without government regulation. Those living in reality understand such a place could never exist, and so Libertarianism will remain nothing more than an elusive dream.

      November 10, 2012 at 1:15 am |
    • Mickey1313

      End religion, your thoughts on libriatarianism is all to true. If people were honest, it could work, but 5 thousand years if history prove humans in general are not honest.

      November 10, 2012 at 12:09 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 and Eric Marrapodi with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team.