Mormons like to say that when Jeffrey R. Holland gets up to speak, Satan panics. His talks appeal to both Mormons and non-Mormons and one group of evangelical religion students, shown a video of one of his speeches, admitted it could have been given by one of their own leaders. Such a talk was given by Elder Holland in the Mormon General Conference in April 2013. Elder Holland is an apostle, in the same tradition as the Biblical apostles.
Filed under: Book of Mormon, Jesus Christ in the Book of Mormon
The very first mention of Jesus Christ comes in the first verse of the Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon is a book of scripture used by Mormons along with the Bible and other scriptures. The purpose of the Book of Mormon is to testify of Jesus Christ. The true name of the Church is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, demonstrating the importance of the Savior to the faith. Mormon is a nickname that is sometimes applied to the people of the Church.
It may surprise you to learn that the Book of Mormon is actually a book about Jesus Christ, the same Jesus found in the Bible. The Mormons (a nickname for members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) added a subheading to the book to explain that it is a second witness of the Lord. The Bible often tells us there is a need for two or more witnesses of anything important—it was even a part of Jewish law.
In the April 2013 General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, whose members are nicknamed Mormons, a woman gave the closing prayer in the first session. Jean A. Stevens is the First Counselor in the General Primary Presidency, which means she assists the president and the second counselor in overseeing the children’s auxiliary internationally. Women have given all the prayers in the Young Women and Relief Society sessions held shortly before conference weekend. Prayer assignments have followed patterns. Until this weekend, assignments have most recently been given by members of the Seventies, and since this is a priesthood office, the people giving the prayers have been men. Prior to this, prayers were given by newly released mission presidents. Assignments have nearly always been based on holding a specific office, not actually based on gender, although it has worked out that way—but the purpose was not to give the role only to men.
When God began the world, He started with just two people—Adam and Eve. They were married by Him and thus set the pattern for marriage that has continued until a very few years ago. For Christians, the ultimate explanation for why traditional marriage must be guarded is found in the Bible. The Bible is extremely clear on the definition of marriage and also on homosexual behavior. Most Christians, reading the Bible as a whole, see that we are to love everyone, but we do not have to give approval to all behaviors. A parent loves her children even when they do something they should not, but that does not obligate her to accept any behavior they choose to engage in. Jesus protected and loved the woman found in adultery from her abusers—but instructed her not to continue to sin. He did not find it necessary to and change the laws to make her sin legal and acceptable in order to love her. It is, in fact, more loving to help people make sound eternal choices.
When I was in my early twenties, I developed partial amnesia. I discovered I had lost the stories of my life that happened between ages three and ten. I was surprised to discover how much that loss impacted my life. Those were very formative years and I had no idea what had happened to me during that time. It was when I learned to read, started school, lived next door to my grandmother…so much happened and it was gone.
The constitution of China guarantees the right to religious belief, but it recognizes only a few churches. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, whose members are called Mormons, is not one of the five officially recognized religions. However, they do have a legal presence in the country under very strict rules. Since obedience to law is a basic principle of Mormonism, the church has respect within the government.
When white smoke appeared at the Vatican, many Mormons were glued to their televisions or computers, waiting for the decision and then to learn the identity of the new Pope. That might seem odd, since Mormons are not led by the Pope. However, Mormons and Catholics have many shared values, particularly in the areas of traditional families and opposition to most abortions. They also have a shared history of working together to care for the poor and needy, following the example of Jesus Christ.
On March 8, 2013, President Obama met with a small group of invited faith leaders to discuss immigration reform. Dieter F. Uchtdorf, the second councilor to the Mormon prophet, was among those invited. He is a natural choice in that he has been an immigrant three times in his life and the Mormons have made immigration reform one of the few political topics in which they have taken an interest.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, whose members are often called Mormons, have announced a new version of the scriptures, the first since 1981. The new version is available online immediately and will begin to be available in print by August, 2013. The process has been in the making for almost eight years and was prompted due to wear and tear on the original printing masters. Since they would need to be replaced, it was decided to make improvements first.