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Mormon Women: Followers of Christ

Mormon Women: Followers of Christ

In 1999, Mary Ellen Smoot, who was then president of the Relief Society presented a new and official declaration. The Relief Society is the women’s auxiliary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, whose members are sometimes called Mormons. The Declaration was created to outline what Mormon women believe and how they live. The teen girls had a theme they recited weekly, and now the women had one of their own. The Declaration helps to show how Mormon women are followers of Jesus Christ: “We are beloved spirit daughters of God, and our lives have meaning, purpose, and direction. As a worldwide sisterhood, we are united in our devotion to Jesus Christ, our Savior and Exemplar. We are women of faith, virtue, vision, and charity who: Increase our testimonies of Jesus Christ through prayer and scripture study. Seek spiritual strength by following the promptings of the Holy Ghost. Dedicate ourselves to strengthening marriages, families, and homes. Find nobility in motherhood and... Read the rest of this entry »

Understanding the “Mormon Moment:” Mormonism 101

Understanding the “Mormon Moment:” Mormonism 101

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, sometimes called the “Mormon Church” by the media, has been in the news a lot lately. Topics ranging from Mitt Romney’s payment of tithes to the Church (he is a practicing Mormon) to Mormons’ practice of baptisms for the dead have prompted some to call this the “Mormon Moment.” The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the fourth largest Christian church in America, and even more Mormons live abroad than in the United States. Yet many people throughout the world still have little understanding of how Latter-day Saints (Mormons) live and what they believe. Mormonism 101 To help people understand more about Latter-day Saints, the Church recently published an article entitled “Mormonism 101: FAQ.” This article outlines Mormons’ basic beliefs, and answers some of the most common questions non-Mormons may have about the Church. It also addresses some of the more controversial topics... Read the rest of this entry »

Mormon Women and the Relief Society: As Sisters in Zion

Mormon Women and the Relief Society: As Sisters in Zion

By Keith Lionel Brown Church services in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (sometimes inadvertently referred to as the “Mormon Church” in the media) are divided into three segments. The first and most important segment is Sacrament meeting, where members meet together to partake of the sacrament of the Lord’s supper and hear talks given by various members of the congregation. The second segment is Sunday School. During the third segment, members split into various groups and attend separate meetings: Priesthood Meeting for the men, Relief Society for the women, and Young Men/Young Women meetings for the youth. “Primary”activities and classes are provided for children 18 months to 12 years of age during both the second and third segments. Mormon Women As Leaders and Teachers Women are equal participants as teachers and leaders in every one of these church programs except for Priesthood Meeting. Along with the men, they pray and speak in Sacrament Meetings, conduct... Read the rest of this entry »

Do Mormons Do Stations of the Cross?

Do Mormons Do Stations of the Cross?

Stations of the Cross is a Catholic tradition that grew out of a desire to replicate pilgrimages to Jerusalem. Today, they help Catholics remember the final days of the life of Jesus Christ as they move through a series of wooden crosses that have been blessed by a person with the authority to do so and pray. Some consider it reparation for the suffering and loneliness of the Savior’s personal Via Dolorosa. Pope Pius XI considered it an obligation for Catholics and John Paul II praised those who make an effort to stand by the endless crosses the Savior endures even today through abuse and mistreatment from those who do not honor the Sacrifices He made for them. Although Mormons don’t participate in a formal ceremony, they do teach the principle behind it. As Pope John Paul II said, we must stand beside the Savior. In the April 2009 General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints , whose members are often called Mormons, Jeffrey R. Holland gave a powerful... Read the rest of this entry »

How Do Mormons View the Law of Moses?

How Do Mormons View the Law of Moses?

The Law of Moses, to Mormons, was a lesser law, given because the Jews at that time were not living in such a way as to be able to live a higher law. This was a strict law that could be followed in exactness. It didn’t replace the fullness of the gospel. It was simply provided to keep them in remembrance of God and to prepare them for a return to the higher law. (See Mosiah 13:30 in the Book of Mormon.) “Strictly speaking, the Law of Moses consists of the first five books of the Old Testament-what the Jews call the Torah. These five books of Moses (Genesis; Exodus; Leviticus; Numbers; and Deuteronomy) are also called the Pentateuch, but in the New Testament they are usually just “the Law.” Sometimes the term “the Law” was used for the whole Old Testament, but usually a distinction was made between the books of Moses (the Law) and those of subsequent prophets (the Prophets); hence, the custom in Jesus‘ time of referring to the Hebrew scriptures as... Read the rest of this entry »

Why does God allow suffering?

Why does God allow suffering?

Personal Response by Jack Rushton I believe this is a very profound question that has undoubtedly been asked by millions of people from the beginning of time. Life can seem unfair at times as we experience our own personal suffering, and witness through our own eyes or through the media, the incredible suffering that seems to be such an integral part of the daily lives of people all over the world. I had to come to grips with this question on a personal level when 19 years ago I broke my neck, severed my spinal cord, and became paralyzed from the neck down and ventilator dependent. Approximately 6 years ago I had an experience with my son-in-law that I believe will shed some light on this fundamental question about life. One morning I received a phone call from my son-in-law, Matt. He was enrolled in the MBA program at UC Irvine which is about 20 minutes from our home. The Dean of the MBA program had just announced to all the students that were there that day that one of their classmates... Read the rest of this entry »

What are Mormon buildings used for?

What are Mormon buildings used for?

Personal Response by Richard Neitzel Holzapfel The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Church) constructs about 300 to 400 meetinghouses each year throughout the world. However, an additional number of buildings are constructed every year as part of an intense building program that meets the needs of a growing membership spread across the world and serves a variety of purposes. Some buildings are used for administrative needs, such as the Mormon Church offices built on every continent. Other buildings are used for the weekday education program of the Mormon Church, including Brigham Young University campuses at Provo, Utah; Rexburg, Idaho; and Laie, Hawaii and the seminary and institute programs that sometime are located near public schools, colleges and universities. Additionally, the Church’s welfare services department constructs a variety of buildings to store and distribute food and goods and to provide employment training as part of the Church’s worldwide humanitarian... Read the rest of this entry »