Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Creeping Mormonism (into Protestantism)

I know people who have omitted the “'til death do us part” clause from their wedding ceremonies for three very different reasons:

1) They believed that their marriage would last past death, despite the official creeds of their religion. (Quite a few fit this category.)

2) They had a degree of religious commitment and didn’t want to make a promise “before God” they might not be able to keep. (Only a couple fit here.)

3) They simply didn’t think about it - or, if they did, didn’t like the wording. (The vast majority fit this category.)

I think it is fascinating how much of Mormon theology is beginning to creep into the beliefs of many Protestants. When I traveled the rural backroads of OH, PA and WV a few years ago on a regular basis, I often listened to the local religious radio programming (since I didn’t want to hear about the cost of each and every imaginable grain and vegetable), and I would hear some version of a Restored Gospel principle (including Family Home Evening) at least monthly - from ministers who regularly spent time bashing Mormonism openly on air.

I loved the irony.


Christy said...

On point #1: I was once trying to explain to my sister in-law about our beliefs about being with our spouses for eternity. Her response was, don't we all believe that? I didn't know how to respond.

newellista said...

I remember teaching discussions in a small Argentine town. We would teach a concept, and they would reply, "Yep, we believe that, too." No matter what we taught, Plan of Salvation, Commandments, Jesus Christ.
We would try and explain that, as Catholics, they couldn't really believe what we were teaching, but they insisted.

It wasn't until we went to Mass with them, and heard the Priest preach a sermon on faith, using Alma 32, that we finally understood why the people were having such a hard time seeing the differences in theology.

As far as they were concerned, there was no difference.

Stephen said...

Good point, not to mention the vast change in the past fifty years about whether or not God speaks to us.

Unknown said...

To tell you the truth, I'm Glad the LDS church is unrecognized for what it does. All the charity work we do, all the service and the values that are taught... they quietly seep into society and bless the lives of those who come in contact with the church.

I'm glad that we do good without being recognized for it because I feel like, as soon as we start getting recognized for it, we'll be ripe for pride. Also, people put organizations and leaders up on pedestals and then just as soon, cast them down or sully their names. I'm worried, for instance, about what might happen if Obama puts even one single pinky toenail out of line. We don't need that kind of public pressure as a church... and I think we'll be blessed more for service that has gone unrecognized. :) Though sometimes I do get tired of the ignorance and slander... I try to think of what I wrote above as a mantra during those times.

ConservativeRepublican said...

My same-sex partner and I both believe that we're going to be united for eternity despite the fact that he's a Catholic and I'm a Baptist. I was raised around lots of LDS people, so I suppose the 'mormon' view of eternal marriage influenced my own views on the matter but I'm not sure where his position came from. I'll have to ask him sometime. Anyway, the idea of eternal marriage is such a beautiful thing.

God Bless.

Papa D said...

Thanks, CR. I'm glad you found my blog. I really like your posts over on FMH.