Brigham Young’s Later Years
The church had attempted unsuccessfully to institute the United Order numerous times, most recently during the Mormon Reformation. In 1874, Young once again attempted to establish a permanent Order, which he now called the “United Order of Enoch” in at least 200 Mormon communities, beginning in St. George, Utah on February 9, 1874.In Young’s Order, producers would generally deed their property to the Order, and all members of the order would share the cooperative’s net income, often divided into shares according to how much property was originally contributed. Sometimes, the members of the Order would receive wages for their work on the communal property. Like the United Order established by Joseph Smith, Young’s Order was short-lived. By the time of Brigham Young’s death in 1877, most of these United Orders had failed. By the end of the 19th century, the Orders were essentially extinct.
Brigham Young died in August 1877. After the death of Brigham Young, the First Presidency was not reorganized until 1880, when Young was succeeded by President John Taylor, who in the interim had served as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.
How Do Members Practise Their Faith
There are two main types of ordinances performed in the church. Those necessary for exaltation , also called saving ordinances. These include:
- Conferral of the Melchizedek priesthood
- Temple endowment
There are also ordinances for guidance and comfort, including:
- Naming and blessing of children
- Administering to the sick
- Various types of blessings
- The dedication of graves
Temple endowment and marriage are the most significant ordinances, necessary for eternal life. Endowment is an initiation ceremony in which members make pledges called covenants affirming those made in baptism. The ceremony is preceded with washing and anointing, and afterwards, members receive their white temple undergarments.
Temple marriage is a ritual that seals in heaven relationships formed on earth, principally a man and a woman in marriage, all children born and unborn, and any they adopt, for eternity.
Proxy ordinances can also be performed on behalf of members dead ancestors, thus offering them the chance of salvation and the opportunity to be sealed in the family unit in the spirit world. The church provides genealogy services for this reason but also for the public.
Sunday is the Sabbath day for the church and members attend the sacrament meeting. Baptised members receive bread and water in remembrance of the Last Supper. Sunday services take place in churches, not temples. The services and churches are open to the public temples are not.
Mormon No More: Faithful Reflect On Churchs Move To Scrap A Moniker
For the Latter-day Saints faithful, a shift away from a longtime name has meant lighthearted screw-ups, logistical complications and reflections on identity.
A statue of the angel Moroni sits atop the Salt Lake Temple in Salt Lake City. Leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have said that adherents should no longer call themselves Mormons or even use the shorthand L.D.S.Credit…Rick Bowmer/Associated Press
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After finally getting her twin babies to fall asleep in Rexburg, Idaho, Kristine Anderson described herself as a stereotypical, Mormon stay-at-home mom.
Then she sighed loudly, annoyed that a lifetime habit had slipped out.
Ugh, she said. I just said the word Mormon again. I apologize.
Last August, leaders of her faith announced a game-changing divine revelation. Russell M. Nelson, the churchs president, said that God had impressed upon my mind the importance of the name he has revealed for his church. Church members should no longer call themselves Mormons, or even use the shorthand L.D.S., the church announced.
The word Mormon has been with the church from the beginning. It comes from the Book of Mormon, the churchs signature text , which adherents believe was recorded on gold plates by the prophet Mormon and his son, Moroni.
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Tithing And Other Donations
Church members are expected to donate one-tenth of their income to support the operations of the church, including construction of temples, meetinghouses, and other buildings, and other church uses. Members are also encouraged to abstain from food and drink on the first Sunday of each month for at least two consecutive meals. They donate at least the cost of the two skipped meals as a fast offering, which the church uses to assist the poor and needy and expand its humanitarian efforts.
All able LDS young men are expected to serve a two-year, full-time proselytizing mission. Missionaries do not choose where they serve or the language in which they will proselytize, and are expected to fund their missions themselves or with the aid of their families. Prospective male missionaries must be at least 18 years old and no older than 25, not yet married, have completed secondary school, and meet certain criteria for physical fitness and spiritual worthiness. Missionary service is not compulsory, nor is it required for young men to retain their church membership.
Unmarried women 19 years and older may also serve as missionaries, generally for a term of 18 months. However, the LDS Church emphasizes that women are not under the same expectation to serve as male members are, and may serve solely as a personal decision. There is no maximum age for missionary service for women.
Restorationism And Prophetic Leadership
The LDS Church teaches that, subsequent to the death of Jesus and his original apostles, his church, along with the authority to act in Jesus Christ’s name and the church’s attendant spiritual gifts, were lost, due to a combination of external persecutions and internal heresies. The restorationas represented by the church began by Joseph Smithrefers to a return of the authentic priesthood power, spiritual gifts, ordinances, living prophets and revelation of the primitive Church of Christ. This restoration is associated with a number of events which are understood to have been necessary to re-establish the early Christian church found in the New Testament, and to prepare the earth for the Second Coming of Jesus. In particular, Latter-day Saints believe that angels appeared to Joseph Smith and a limited number of his associates, and bestowed various priesthood authorities on them.
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When Mormons Aspired To Be A White And Delightsome People
A historian looks at the legacy of racism in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
So many recent events in American life have been a call for the country to grapple with its legacy of racism and white supremacy, including the violence in Charlottesville and even the 2016 election. These events have created turmoil among some conservative Christian groups, who have triedin fits and startsto confront their own racial divisions.
One group, however, has taken a slightly different path: Mormons. While a majority of Mormons voted for Trump in the 2016 election, he fared far worse than previous Republican presidential candidates among the minority religious group. According to The Salt Lake Tribune, many in Mormon-heavy Utah doubted the presidents moral character and strength as a role model.
Criticism Of Joseph Smith
In the 1830s, the church was criticized for Smith’s handling of a banking failure in Kirtland, Ohio. After the Mormons migrated west, there was fear and suspicion about the LDS Church’s political and military power in Missouri, culminating in the 1838 Mormon War and the Mormon Extermination Order by Governor Lilburn Boggs. In the 1840s, criticism of the church included its theocratic aspirations in Nauvoo, Illinois. Criticism of the practice of plural marriage and other doctrines taught by Smith were published in the Nauvoo Expositor. Opposition led to a series of events culminating in the death of Smith and his brother while jailed in 1844.
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The Founder Joseph Smith Jr
When Smith was fourteen years old, he claimed to have had a religious experience, in which both God the Father and Jesus Christ spoke to him and instructed him not to affiliate himself with any denomination. Three years later, he reported being visited again by a heavenly angel named Moroni who told him that a book written on gold plates had been buried and Smith had been charged with its protection.
Smith allegedly retrieved the gold plates in 1827 and began the process of translating their engravings. On March 26, 1830, when his dictation was complete, Smith published the work as the Book of Mormon. Shortly thereafter, on April 6, 1830, Smith also founded the first Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints church.
To avoid conflict and persecution encountered for his claims, Smith and his followers moved to Kirtland, Ohio early in 1831. Here the church’s first temple was built and some Mormons believed erroneously that Jesus’ Millennial reign had begun. However, the controversy and mob violence that had plagued Smith followed him to Kirtland and in early 1832, Joseph was dragged from his bedroom in the dead of night, tarred and feathered, and left for dead.
In February, 1844, Smith announced his candidacy for President of the United States, with Sidney Rigdon as his vice-presidential running mate.
Duties And Expectations Of Church Members
For members of the church, the greatest commandment is to love God with all their heart and the second is to love others as they love themselves. All other commandments are considered appendages to these great commandments /Matthew#22:37-40″ rel=”nofollow”> Matt 22:37-40). Members are encouraged to pray several times a day, to perform good works, and to read scriptures daily.
Members are expected to donate their time, money, and talents to the church, and those who have participated in the endowment ceremony make an oath to donate all that they have, if required of them, to the Lord. To be in good standing and to enter the church’s temples, church members are asked to tithe their income to the church, which is officially interpreted as 10 percent of annual income. In addition, members are invited to donate monthly charitable “fast offerings” , which are used to help the poor and needy in the community members are also encouraged to make other humanitarian donations through the church.
Church members are permitted to think or believe freely on any issue, but are discouraged from publicly criticizing local leaders or general authorities repeated public criticism of the church or its leaders may subject a person to church discipline for apostasy. The church maintains a Strengthening Church Members Committee which monitors members’ publications and refers critical material to local authorities for possible disciplinary action.
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Church Has Been Committed To The First Amendment Principle Of Religious Freedom
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, LDS Church or LDS, has always been committed to the principle of religious freedom.
This commitment is found in one of their books of scripture called Doctrine and Covenants: We believe that religion is instituted of God and that men are amenable to him, and him only, for the exercise of it, unless their religious opinions prompt them to infringe on the rights of others…that the civil magistrate should restrain crime, but never control conscience should punish guilt, but never suppress the freedom of the soul .
The eleventh Article of Faith states, We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may.
The LDS Church recognizes the necessity of government for holding people accountable for their actions and promoting the good and safety of society. The twelfth Article of Faith affirms the duty of citizens to obey the rule of law. Indeed, Mormons believe that God had a hand in the development of the U.S. Constitution.
Although the Mormons believe in religious freedom and the divine origin of the Constitution, they fared poorly early on in their relations with the government and fellow citizens.
The Church Was Persecuted For Their Religious Beliefs
LDS beliefs were often at odds with the established religions of the day. First in New York, then Ohio, and finally Missouri, citizens and local governments violently persecuted Mormons, primarily for their religious beliefs, but also because of perceptions that the church was directed in a dictatorial fashion and that some of its tenets were illegal.
In 1838, the governor of Missouri issued an order for them to be driven from the state or exterminated. They then settled in Nauvoo, Illinois, but within a few years once again faced violent persecution, which led to the death of Joseph Smith at the hands of a mob who stormed a prison where he was being held.
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Activity Rates And Disaffiliation
The LDS Church does not release official statistics on church activity, but it is likely that only approximately 40 percent of its recorded membership in the United States and 30 percent worldwide regularly attend weekly Sunday worship services. A statistical analysis of the 2014 Pew Religious Landscape Survey assessed that “about one-third of those with a Latter-day Saint background” outright “left the Church”, identifying as disaffiliated. Activity rates vary with age, and disengagement occurs most frequently between age 16 and 25. Young single adults are more likely to become inactive than their married counterparts, and overall, women tend to be more active than men.
Church humanitarian aid includes organizing food security, clean water, mobility, and healthcare initiatives, operating thrift stores, maintaining a service project website, and directly funding or partnering with other organizations. The value of all donations from the church in 2021 was $906 million.
What Do Followers Believe
The church follows 13 articles of faith, the first of which states that members believe in God the Father, his son Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost. However, the church is non-Trinitarian: they are understood as three separate beings.
Salvation or individual exaltation requires repentance of ones own sins , baptism through immersion, confirmation and receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, through the laying on of hands.
Members believe in three realms of existence: the premortal, mortal, and postmortal world. Souls move from the premortal, through mortal existence, into the spirit world, then to a resurrected state. Hence they live with God before and after their time on earth life is an intermediate stage of trial and improvement. The postmortal world is comprised of three kingdoms of glory: celestial, terrestrial, and telestial.
Exaltation, or eternal life, is salvation in the Celestial Kingdom. This is a doctrine of human theosis humans can become as God, if they choose to fulfil Gods plan.
Gods plan is seen as working through the family unit. Human beings, in marriage, partner with God to provide a mortal experience for Gods children. This is why members tend to have larger-than-average families.
The spirit world is believed to have a physical existence: families live together for ever there, so long as their relationships were sealed in the temple .
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Mormonism Is The Core Theology Of The Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter
Mormonism is the theology of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Members of the church are often called Mormons. The term was originally considered derogatory, but today it is considered acceptable. However, the LDS church has explained that the word Mormon is sometimes used to describe other splinter groups that are not affiliated with the Church of Latter-day Saints, such as polygamist groups.
Mormonism is marked by several saving ordinances, or what other religions may call sacraments. These ordinances include baptism by immersion, confirmation, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, an endowment in the temples, and marriage.
Ordinances and covenants help us remember who we are, the LDS church says on its official site. They remind us of our duty to God. The Lord has provided them to help us come unto Him and receive eternal life. When we honor them, He strengthens us.
A Quick History Of The Name Of The Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter
When the resurrected Christ visited the inhabitants of the ancient Americas, the people asked Him what they should call themselves.
Lord, we will that thou wouldst tell us the name whereby we shall call this church for there are disputations among the people concerning this matter, asked His disciples. The Saviors response was clear.
Verily, verily, I say unto you, why is it that the people should murmur and dispute because of this thing? Have they not read the scriptures, which say ye must take upon you the name of Christ, which is my name? For by this name shall ye be called at the last day.
Since the Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ by Joseph Smith, this process of calling ourselves by the name of Christ has been just thata process. Heres a quick history of the name of the Church.
Professor Goodwin testified that, In a similar fashion to how the Lord did not provide Nephi and his family a prebuilt ship for their journey, Latter-day Saints were not given a polished and official name at the outset of the Restoration. Rather, they arrived at the name The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints through a collaborative and revelatory process that continues today.
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