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.

Election results raise questions about Christian right’s power

“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.

Opinion: Moving on from elections as American rite

“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. Science

    Free speech helps educate the masses................POLITICIANS too !

    Where do morals come from?

    By Kelly Murray, CNN

    Gravity is not up for debate !

    BY the way ...................Splat goes a fairy in the sky !...............bye bye tinker bell !

    Einstein's Gravity Theory Passes Toughest Test Yet..............................E = mc2..........(U–Pb).................two math formulas.

    Apr. 25, 2013 — A strange stellar pair nearly 7,000 light-years from Earth has provided physicists with a unique cosmic laboratory for studying the nature of gravity. The extremely strong gravity of a massive neutron star in orbit with a companion white dwarf star puts competing theories of gravity to a test more stringent than any available before


    Hey James Madison................religion has none it looks like.............with the comments on this blog.

    The Big question is ETHICS ! does religion have any ?

    The Ethics of Resurrecting Extinct Species

    Apr. 8, 2013 — At some point, scientists may be able to bring back extinct animals, and perhaps early humans, raising questions of ethics and environmental disruption.


    April 30, 2013 at 4:16 pm | Report abuse |

    May 1, 2013 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |

    Dinosaur Egg Study Supports Evolutionary Link Between Birds and Dinosaurs: How Troodon Likely Hatched Its Young


    And NO ANGELS the pope KICKED them OFF the TEAM last year !

    From Soup to Cells—the Origin of Life


    the wrong path is Adam and Eve !

    Human Y Chromosome Much Older Than Previously Thought

    Mar. 4, 2013 — The discovery and analysis of an extremely rare African American Y chromosome pushes back the time of the most recent common ancestor for the Y chromosome lineage tree to 338,000 years ago. This time predates the age of the oldest known anatomically modern human fossils.


    No god(s) needed or required to graduate from public schools in the US

    Remember : Adam had to POKE himself hard with his OWN BONE to create Eve.

    No god(s) needed................... Old. DNA works..................also catches crooks !

    Ancient DNA Reveals Europe's Dynamic Genetic History

    Apr. 23, 2013 — Ancient DNA recovered from a series of skeletons in central Germany up to 7,500 years old has been used to reconstruct the first detailed genetic history of modern Europe.


    Ca-nabis and Cannabinoids (PDQ®) – National Cancer Insti-tute


    Mar 21, 2013 – [1,2] These plant-derived compounds may be referred to as phytocannabinoids. ... have a protective effect against the development of certain types of tumors. ... In lung cancer cell lines, CBD upregulated ICAM-1, leading to ...

    Good stuff !

    The fact...............the earth is to old for this nonsemse ! Time to EVOLVE !

    Ancient Earth Crust Stored in Deep Mantle

    Apr. 24, 2013 — Scientists have long believed that lava erupted from certain oceanic volcanoes contains materials from the early Earth's crust. But decisive evidence for this phenomenon has proven elusive. New research from a team including Carnegie's Erik Hauri demonstrates that oceanic volcanic rocks contain samples of recycled crust dating back to the Archean era 2.5 billion years ago. Their work is published in Nature.


    For what...................... ? Make sure to read what the pope said !

    Where do morals come from?

    By Kelly Murray, CNN


    Learning is fun with facts.......................... and facts work when teaching children.

    Atheist Prof. Peter Higgs: Stop calling Higgs boson the ‘God particle’

    Professor Peter Higgs said recently that there is no God and so people should stop referring to the theoretical partial that
    bears his name as the “God particle.”


    Pope praises science, but insists God created world updated Thur October 28, 2010
    Stephen Hawking is wrong, Pope Benedict XVI said Thursday – God did create the universe. The pope didn't actually mention the world-famous scientist, who argues in a book published last month that the laws of physics show there is no need for a supreme... \



    Heaven is 'a fairy story,' scientist Stephen Hawking says updated Tue May 17, 2011
    By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor The concept of heaven or any kind of afterlife is a "fairy story," famed British scientist Stephen Hawking said in a newspaper interview this week. "I regard the brain as a computer which will stop working when...


    April 7th, 2012

    08:32 PM ET

    The Jesus debate: Man vs. myth


    Make sure to read comments

    April 18, 2013 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |

    Breaking News

    NASA: Three planets found are some of best candidates so far for habitable worlds outside our solar system.


    NASA: Mars could have supported life

    Star Dust we are


    Holy Hallucinations 35


    The ORIGIN story is bullsh-it...............so is the bible............... nasty !

    From Soup to Cells—the Origin of Life


    Scientists have unearthed the first direct signs of cheesemaking, at a site in Poland that dates back 7,500 years.

    Human Evolution


    BBC. Planet of the Apemen. Battle for Earth 1. Ho-mo Erectus


    BACKFILL on E =mc2.....

    Einstein letter, set for auction, shows scientist challenging idea of God, being 'chosen'

    By Jessica Ravitz, CNN

    Decades before atheist scientist and author Richard Dawkins called God a "delusion," one world-renowned physicist – Albert Einstein – was weighing in on faith matters with his own strong words.

    “The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still primitive legends,” Einstein wrote in German in a 1954 letter that will be auctioned on eBay later this month. "No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this.”


    May 4, 2013 at 6:47 am | Report abuse |

    Cheech & Chong's History of 420


    All cults...........creationists, ID believers and devil cults.................

    The fact...............the earth is to old ...........time to EVOLVE !.

    Ancient Earth Crust Stored in Deep Mantle

    Apr. 24, 2013 — Scientists have long believed that lava erupted from certain oceanic volcanoes contains materials from the early Earth's crust. But decisive evidence for this phenomenon has proven elusive. New research from a team including Carnegie's Erik Hauri demonstrates that oceanic volcanic rocks contain samples of recycled crust dating back to the Archean era 2.5 billion years ago. Their work is published in Nature.


    Dover Trial Transcripts............................................. FACTS.

    Below are the complete transcripts from the Dover Trial. Thanks to our friends at the National Center for Science Education for helping us fill in the missing transcripts.


    Education works for children

    Earth From Space

    Detailed satellite images reveal the web of connections that sustain life on Earth. Aired February 13, 2013 on PBS

    Program Description

    "Earth From Space" is a groundbreaking two-hour special that reveals a spectacular new space-based vision of our planet. Produced in extensive consultation with NASA scientists, NOVA takes data from earth-observing satellites and transforms it into dazzling visual sequences, each one exposing the intricate and surprising web of forces that sustains life on earth. Viewers witness how dust blown from the Sahara fertilizes the Amazon; how a vast submarine "waterfall" off Antarctica helps drive ocean currents around the world; and how the sun's heating up of the southern Atlantic gives birth to a colossally powerful hurricane. From the microscopic world of water molecules vaporizing over the ocean to the magnetic field that is bigger than Earth itself, the show reveals the astonishing beauty and complexity of our dynamic planet.


    February 16, 2013 at 7:18 am | Report abuse |



    May 4, 2013 at 7:28 pm |
  2. Al Williams

    All religions are mini-governments.

    November 25, 2012 at 12:33 pm |
  3. rocketscientist

    Aone day all will kneel to the LDS

    November 16, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
    • rickirs

      And pray to the almighty dollar?

      November 17, 2012 at 6:15 am |
  4. nomomohere

    It's SO good to see the mormons running for the hills again. Maybe they'll leave Utah and run to Mexico with Romney...Utah is such a beautiful State, it's too bad the mormons plague it like locusts.

    November 15, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
  5. Great White Horse Prophecy FAIL = Mormons no longer blogging

    ""Free contraceptives were very big with young college-aged women,"
    Romney on why he lost
    Geez I wonder why he didnt get the woman vote....he views them as wh ores who voted for Obama because of some free rubbers. Shame on the GOP for the best they could give was this idiot.

    November 15, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
    • Great White Horse Prophecy FAIL = Mormons no longer blogging

      Not only is Romney not very smart...he is a tool now

      November 15, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
    • pastmomo

      ....and look at how he spoke of the Latino and Black vote...as though they were "less then" a White Person. Man that creepy, mormon jerk really showed his true colors as soon as he was thrown out of the world of politics. Romney, Ppease just shut up, take your creepy family and go back to that polygamy compound in Mexico...where you came from.

      November 15, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
  6. rocketscientist

    I just wanted to stipulate that my comments are directed solely to the bigots and/or trolls and not to posters with legitimate complaints about the Church of LDS, that is, ex-Mormons who have had a bad experience and have chosen to leave the church or gays and lesbians and their relatives (Iwith respect to Mormons support for prop 8 and other anti-gay marriage measures). I know several ex-Mormons too, including my wife, so I'm aware that the church is definitely not for everyone and there are reasons people leave. Personally, though I admire many things about it, there are also several other aspects that I disagree with. It's definitely not for me, I don't plan on converting. But I do have considerable respect and admiration for the Mormons. Every single one I know has been very kind to me. I admire their commitment to family, their values, their faith, their hard work, and their charity. I don't care what they choose to believe in, or what anyone else chooses to believe in for that matter, since none of that affects me. We have freedom of religion in this country and religious tolerance and civility is supposed to be one of our principles that follows from that (obviously the bigots here feel differently or don't care about that). How you treat others is what's truly important, not how you choose to worship (or not). And hatred based solely on race or religion is never right. That's not what this country is supposed to be about.

    November 15, 2012 at 12:30 pm |
    • rocketscientist

      My son also wants to punch Romney.

      November 15, 2012 at 12:38 pm |
    • rocketscientist

      I also believe, as a Mormon that gays and lesbians and anybody that was every a Mormon and then left my church should be flayed and burned alive.

      November 15, 2012 at 12:43 pm |
    • Great White Horse Prophecy FAIL = Mormons no longer blogging

      "I admire their commitment to family, their values, their faith, their hard work, and their charity."
      Sorry but you just revealed that you are in fact a mormon. Only thing worse than a mormon is a deceptive lying one. You can keep blogging but your great white horse failed and LDS failed.

      November 15, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
    • rocketscientist

      I like to change up the secret handshakes to keep fellow Mormons on their toes. I even wear my cooking hat backwarsds to see if they notice. I sometimes wear my magical underwear inside out and a little joke between God and me.

      November 15, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
    • rocketscientist

      Looks like I have another person that wants to be me! I'm truly flattered. They're not doing a very good job of it, though. They've got just about everything wrong.

      1. My son is 18 months old. He doesn't have much of a punch.

      2. I'm not Mormon, neither is my son.

      3. I've got nothing against gays and lesbians. I even have a few gay and lesbian acquaintances. One was even at my twins baptism (in a Catholic church). He was a very nice and polite guy. I'm praying for a gay friend of my wife's now who is dying of cancer. I wish both the Catholic Church and the church of LDS would soften their position on gays and lesbians.

      4. Whoever's pretending to be me has just proven how pathetic they truly are. Congratulations! It's been a tedious day working on this propulsion code and your clumsy, insipid 7th grade humor proved most amusing.

      Dr. H

      November 15, 2012 at 6:47 pm |
    • rocketscientist

      "Sorry but you just revealed that you are in fact a mormon."

      Sorry to say, you're totally wrong. I'm Catholic (which is about as bad or worse for most of the bigots here), and if I wanted to, I could easily prove it. So, sorry, you fail.

      "Only thing worse than a mormon is a deceptive lying one."

      I haven't lied about one single thing here. If you have any proof that I intentionally told a mistruth, please enlighten me. If not, eat crow. You should be used to it by now.

      "You can keep blogging but your great white horse failed and LDS failed."

      I'm a Democrat who voted for Obama, I'm glad he won. BTW, you lose again.

      Thanks for playing.

      Dr. H

      November 15, 2012 at 6:54 pm |
    • rickirs

      A chirch foundedon white male suprmacy doesn't have much relevancy in the 21st century.

      November 17, 2012 at 6:20 am |
  7. Dyslexic doG

    "God is an ever receeding pocket of scientific ignorance."

    - deGràsse Tyson

    November 15, 2012 at 12:07 pm |
  8. The Mockingjay

    My, my, what a great description of hell; a bunch of demons and devils dancing around and poking fun at good people and sacred things! Oh, excuse me. I didn't mean to spoil your fun. Dance on, devils!

    November 15, 2012 at 12:03 pm |
    • The Mockingjay

      I forgot to mention that I'm looking in the mirror as I type everything...I'm the devil, the demon, the evil one and I love to torment people with my disgusting mental illness!

      November 15, 2012 at 12:06 pm |
  9. Byrd

    A Final Day in the Political Life: Why Mitt, FOX and the Republican’s Billions Lost the Election

    Romney began his last campaign day with a brilliant of display of his omni-benevolent multi-taking skills by announcing that through a supreme act of will, and by firing 47% of his Mormon faith and consolidating it into the remaining 53%, he'd simultaneously found the eternal wisdom of a substantial 24% savings in labor rates alone by following the Eight-fold Path , through Lao Tzu’s Art of War, to the Buddhist and Taoist vote. Two hours later he was seen riding on an elephant through Chinatown, holding pictures of Gandhi, Krishna and Mao while chanting "Harry Krenshaw(?)" in hopes of attracting Hopi Indians (because all Indian guys can ride elephants), Chinese and those bald guys wearing robes in the airports.

    Now in full Mitt mode, he next enraged practically all Latino, Hispanic and Yaqui voters at a brunch with both Mescalero and the Virgin Mary, after which Mescalero was arrested for possession of peyote in hope of securing the votes of the DEA, ATF, FBI, CIA, NSA, NRA, FOP and that wacko sheriff in Arizona.

    His next stop was Denver, where he had a good laugh about tax evasion and off-shore shelters while watching the Daily Show and Colbert Report with a promising group of now taxpaying entrepreneur investors in marijuana clinics in Colorado, California, Washington, and Washington, DC, etc., who mistakenly believed that a tax-exempt stash contribution (easy mistake for anyone) might help change the tax laws in their favor and even stop a war (they were stoned, you know) if he'd only try a bit more of the Afghani bud rolled up with the Nepalese Temple Balls to see the boundless business opportunities in their now properly illuminated light. Mitt later claimed to have had yet another religious experience/revelation which he subsequently forgot while playing with the straws at a local Wendy's. Now we’ll never know. Our loss. Oh, darn.

    (Late Update): Mescalero somehow managed to slip the handcuffs and his whereabouts remain unknown. He was last reported breezin' through town on his white horse, Mescalito.

    In yet another last ditch effort for votes, the Romney's announced over the family breakfast table and an upside down box of Wheaties that four of their five sons would marry women of different races and ethnicities, while a fifth son as yet to be identified would become gay and attempt to enlist in the Marines because Ann likes the snazzy uniforms. The Navy issued an open invitation in case he' was rejected by the Marines, who after first declining, have now said that they were simply too busy at the moment to respond to hypotheticals, but to call back after the damn war was over. Or more colorful words to that effect – they are Marines.

    The last straw breaking news, at least for the afternoon, came when the Mormon Tabernacle in Washington announced at 3:47pm that they were replacing the wizard currently atop their temple with a statue of Mitt who was then reportedly "ascended" into heaven in an secret Mormon ceremony closed to the public, for private consultation with Joseph Smith and Jesus, where Smith reportedly refused to hand over the golden tablets which might have swayed the election in Mitt's favor. As usual, Jesus refused to appear before the cameras for comment, but a spokesman, again as usual, said he promised to get right back to us faster than Mitt can say, "I like (insert favorite cause, food, ethnicity or whatever else you can think of, and/or its antonym, here).

    It was all over by nightfall and the final nail in the Romney campaign coffin was set when he was asked in a live interview by an obviously in full-blown conniption, Megan Kelly, if he was even remotely concerned about the painfully conflicting and twisted dichotomy of duplicity he constantly and erratically displayed, to which Mitt confidently replied, "No, I'm not concerned at all. My proctologist is very gentle and Ann's behind me 100%." Kelly was momentarily restrained during the break by police after garroting a now permanently comatose Karl Rove under the anchor desk with her panty hose and Karl’s own string of pearls, but was released when everyone, including the police, paramedics, even Nancy Grace and that Greta lady agreed that no jury in this or any alternate universe would ever convict and besides, the ceaseless replays of the heinous act had sent their ratings through the roof. Judge Judy pronounced Rove’s intellectual demise an act of god and Kelly innocent of all charges, but stipulated that she would have to continue lithium and electroshock therapy for life.

    Mitt's final comment of the day was captured on a pizza delivery guy's iPhone at the airport and broadcast to the entire world for almost ten minutes before Ted Nugent could take him down with a bow shot to the leg. All he meant to say was, "It rests with the angels now...” which was just fine until he then added while slipping into a vacant stare, "...or maybe with those whirling guys with the dervish-looking things..." Someone on the staff thankfully slipped him a mickey and the cabin door was sealed while the cops hauled Nugent away. The pizza guy was immediately hired by msnbc.

    The angels and Sufis in an emphatic joint statement said, "Leave us the hell out of this."


    Maybe they’ll someday all figure out for themselves why they lost the race, but in the meantime the RNC brain-trust (meaning: trust us, we have a brain) has announced that they are going to enhance their approval ratings with Hispanic voters by presenting just the right combination of empty, non-substantive words, combined with images of Jeb Bush with his hand up the back of a Marco Rubio puppet whenever Marco’s unavailable, in an ad infinitum media loop which will begin airing next week when FOX announces the debut of the 2016 assault against reason election season.

    It would appear that duplicity, at least for a most important day in America, realized its fate as its own worst enemy. And I’m hip to that. A huge segment of our society has been lied to in a very big way, and not by us. So perhaps you might put personal animosities aside for awhile, try putting just one-tenth of your hatred into really constructive problem solving, and let’s see where we get. And then maybe you’ll contribute a twenty percent effort the next time around instead of simply obstructing everything, which is a stone-cold, guaranteed path to accomplishing absolutely nothing.

    So do yourselves and all of us a favor: Turn off FOX now. And forever.

    November 15, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
  10. art

    Google "20 Truths about Mormonism" do your own research. then tell all your friends

    November 15, 2012 at 10:57 am |
  11. Paul

    Mormons should be thrown to the lions! I am a mormon propagandist. Most of the things I post on here are automatically generated by the LDS church and I have to copy and paste. Sometimes I just want to express the things that are going through my head.

    November 15, 2012 at 10:10 am |
    • art

      Google "Banned Mormon Cartoon" watch and tell all your friends

      November 15, 2012 at 11:00 am |
  12. Paul

    Wouldn't it be nice if the comments on this blog really were about faith and not about what a bunch of misfit, paranoid trolls thought about people of faith? Here is an interesting article about God's intervention in lives that I have often experienced and I would like to invite other people of different faiths to comment on their own experiences. I once was about to sleep through an important church meeting and a distinct voice awakened me although there was no one else in the house.

    shutterstock A man and woman praying with Holy Bible belief; bible; book; christ; christian; christianity; church; color; commitment; couple; devotion; disciple; faith; female; fingers; god; hand; heaven; holy; jesus; life; love; male; man; meditate; meditation; peaceful; people; person; photo; pray; prayer; relationship; religion; religious; scriptural; scripture; serenity; spirit; spiritual; spirituality; study; together; tranquility; woman; worship

    Enlarge photo»
    A long time ago in a far away galaxy, when I was just past the midpoint of my German-speaking Swiss mission, a professor who had been an influential mentor of mine wrote to say that he was coming to Switzerland for research. Would my companion and I like to do dinner with him?
    A long time ago in a far away galaxy, when I was just past the midpoint of my German-speaking Swiss mission, a professor who had been an influential mentor of mine wrote to say that he was coming to Switzerland for research. Would my companion and I like to do dinner with him?

    My companion, it so happened, had also enjoyed a class from this charismatic professor, so we replied that we would love to meet him for dinner. But unfortunately, although he'd indicated the date of his arrival and promised to send his flight time and number, his second letter never arrived. So we had no idea where he was coming from, what airline he was coming on, nor what time — morning, noon or night — he would be arriving.

    Now, I happen to be a living, breathing violation of the admonition in the Doctrine and Covenants to "retire to thy bed early, that ye may not be weary; arise early, that your bodies and your minds may be invigorated" (88:124). I love early mornings, but, typically, from the wrong side. I repent daily, but continue to sin.

    Still, I kept the mission rules. I was always up at 6:30 a.m. I can't say, though, that I loved arising so early, and I certainly wasn't inclined to wake up before the alarm clock sounded.

    However, on the morning that our professor was due to arrive, I was awakened at exactly 6 o'clock by the distinct impression that we needed to hurry to get ready and go pick him up at the airport. (I was a zone leader; we had a car, and we were living in Kloten, a suburb of Zurich near the airport.) We raced out the door and met him just as he emerged from the airplane. We took him to his hotel and joined him that night for dinner.

    I have literally no idea why, nor even whether, it was important that this professor and I should meet in Switzerland. It was pleasant, but I could think of nothing significant then, and can think of nothing significant now, that hinged upon it.

    And this raises theological questions, some of them very serious: Why do such things happen? Is God involved? Are guardian angels involved? If so, why would God or angels act to guarantee a meeting between a missionary and his professor — or to help somebody find lost keys, or whatever — while millions starve and the agonized prayers of parents for their dying children seemingly go unanswered?

    I don't know.


    November 15, 2012 at 10:08 am |
    • Paul

      deseretnews.com is a mormon newspaper. It is totally biased and totally supportive of the mormon church.

      November 15, 2012 at 10:12 am |
    • Jesus Christ

      "a distinct voice woke me" Yes....Paul does have a mental illness. He hears voices. Now we know what's going on with Paul. Thank you Paul for discrediting anything you say. LOL!

      November 15, 2012 at 10:14 am |
    • .

      "what a bunch of misfit, paranoid trolls"

      pot meet kettle, kettle meet pot.

      November 15, 2012 at 10:14 am |
    • Jesus Christ

      @ "." are you saying that you're a paranoid, troll or that Paul is? Your comment is not based on anything in the post that you responded to...

      November 15, 2012 at 10:16 am |
  13. Paul

    My name is Paul. I am dumb. I like Dick and Jane. Actually, I really like Dick. If you like Dick call me.
    I am a mormon propagandist. Actually I don't know anything about Mormons. I like to pull things out of my bottom. It is good.

    November 15, 2012 at 9:26 am |
  14. Paul

    The First Presidency invites Church members and others to view the satellite broadcast of the annual Christmas devotional, which will originate from the Conference Center on Sunday, December 2, 2012, at 6:00 p.m. mountain standard time.

    This devotional will include Christmas messages from the First Presidency and music by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and the Orchestra at Temple Square.


    November 15, 2012 at 8:23 am |
    • yodasaysno

      The first Presidency of "WHAT" invites people to watch a Christmas devotional? Paul, you thick man, to REAL Americans, the first Presidency is our Government! LOL! You mormon trolls never stop, do you?

      November 15, 2012 at 9:19 am |
  15. Paul

    The opening section of the Doctrine and Covenants includes the prophecy that the Church will emerge "out of obscurity and out of the darkness." That day may have arrived in much of South America.

    Photo courtesy of the South America South Area,
    Paraguayan President Luis Federico Franco, center, meets with Elder David A. Bednar and Sister Susan Bednar, at left, and Elder Mervyn B. Arnold and Sister Devonna Arnold, at right.
    "We are out of obscurity and darkness," said Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve following his recent return from South America. "This truth is reflected in the way [South American] government officials know and recognize the Church, and how Church representatives are received whenever we come."


    November 14, 2012 at 11:59 pm |
  16. Paul

    As tens of thousands of Syrian refugees flee their war-torn country and seek refuge in Jordan, the Church has answered a Jordanian charity’s call for additional assistance—providing more than $1 million in humanitarian aid and supplies with more en route or planned for the near future.

    Working with the Jordan Hashemite Charity Organization, Latter-day Saint Charities has focused relief efforts largely on the needs of women and children, including infant formula, diapers, hygiene supplies, and school kits. The large majority of these supplies have been purchased locally in Jordan.


    November 14, 2012 at 11:56 pm |
  17. Paul

    JC, you know so little a out the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I know of no effort by the church to stop stem cell research or even where it has expressed an opinion about it.

    November 14, 2012 at 11:52 pm |
    • yodasaysno

      Paul, what do you know of "JC" to tell him or her that they know so little about the mormons? What does anybody want to know about the mormons now? Why don't you either go get a job or get back to your retirement and shut up!?!?!

      November 15, 2012 at 9:20 am |
    • yodasaysno

      Oh, and Paul, you know NOTHING about your mormon religion...WOW. Anybody can google mormons against stem cell research or note that Romney was going to make sure it was TOTALLY stopped to find out the truth. You are obviously a new convert. ROFL!!!!

      November 15, 2012 at 9:25 am |
  18. say it As You See It

    Paul, grow up and shut up. WHO the H*LL cares what your cult does? A HUNDRED different religions and charities do the same every day. Your church only does things so that it can be noticed. The proof? People like you that tell everybody after they've had their egos stroked in sacrement.

    November 14, 2012 at 9:55 pm |
  19. say it As You See It

    @ rocketscientist, what a mean, bullying *ss you are. Your anger, name calling and tantrum throwing only shows people what mormons are really like behind their rosy-cheeked, sickly sweet commercials. Thank you again for proving WHY people want to stay away from mormons, rocketscientist.

    November 14, 2012 at 9:54 pm |
    • rocketscientist

      "@ rocketscientist, what a mean, bullying *ss you are. "

      You're the one who just called me a ***. I didn't use profanity, I used the term bigots, and maybe jerks. Earlier, I posted the Webster definition of a bigot. A lot of people here are, by definition, bigots. So, no name calling from me. And I'm not a bully. I'm sticking up for the disparaged party here, the Mormons, because I believe in tolerance and civility.

      "Your anger, name calling and tantrum throwing only shows people what mormons are really like behind teir rosy-cheeked, sickly sweet commercials."

      I'm not Mormon, so my behaviour can't be an indication of their behaviour, so you're wrong again. By their definition, I'm about the farthest thing from them, I'm a Catholic. And, even if I was, why would you assume that one single individual's behaviour is reflective of a whole group, that is, unless you just automatically hate Mormons for just being Mormon, just like the Nazis hated the Jews. That's what bigots do.

      "Thank you again for proving WHY people want to stay away from mormons, rocketscientist."

      If people want to stay away from Mormons, why are they one of the fastest growing religions?

      Dr. H

      November 15, 2012 at 11:27 am |
  20. Paul

    An international collaboration that includes BYU has discovered a rare genetic mutation that greatly increases risk of Alzheimer's disease.

    Besides adding to a growing body of information about the devastating neurodegenerative disease, the finding is important, researchers said, because the study showed they can use new ways to find genetic mutations that confer risk not only for Alzheimer's, but for other complex diseases.

    November 14, 2012 at 6:21 pm |
    • Jesus Christ

      All HAIL the megalomaniac Paul and his belief that just because BYU is PART of an international collaboration, it means that BYU is the central figure in discovery.

      One needs to point out that most of Alzheimer's research is based on stem-cell research...something the mormons fight LONG and hard to stop.

      Basically Paul has diarrhea of the mouth. He's making up things that have no basis in truth or journalism outside what mormons tell their members to puff up their ego's.

      November 14, 2012 at 9:42 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.