Burning Bosom

Theology, History, Culture, Politics & Life from a LDS (Mormon) Perspective

What’s Wrong with the Mormons?

Posted by Jon on December 26, 2007

Thanks to our lively political scene with Romney and “Mormons” in one corner, and Huckabee and “Baptists” in another, a great article was debated in an article on Slate.com. I recognize Slate is not the best source for accuracy on the LDS faith, but in this case it brought up some very interesting points about the Baptist faith and the LDS faith, and why they just can’t seem to get along.

The article hit close to home as I, like many others, was persecuted by several Baptist Preachers while serving as a missionary in the Marseille, France mission (now the Toulouse, France mission). It was hard for me to see these men so vehemently lash out at me simply because I was Mormon. Never in all the years I went to church did I ever hear a bishop, ecclesiastical leader or even Sunday school teacher put down, bash or otherwise accost another faith. It is simply not an LDS practice, something I appreciate as discussions of that sort do not invite the spirit.

However, the article did get me thinking about other reasons why Baptist leaders may feel the need to warn their congregations about Mormons, one that makes sense to me in my line of work as a marketing communicator. I’ll illustrate my point with this brief story:

I work in an marketing communications agency. A small agency with about seven employees. We have several clients that we serve with this team, and we aim to provide them with the best work possible. Each client is important to us as a source of income for the company. Losing one client without adding another right away can greatly disrupt the agency’s cash-flow situation. Losing several clients could jeopardize the company altogether, as would losing one of our largest clients.

Much like our agency, many local congregations in the Evangelical community (this is also true to many other religions, whether Christian, Jewish or Muslim) depend on weekly, monthly or annual contributions of its members to sustain the “work” in that area. Contributions help pay for the upkeep of the building, charitable causes and the salaries of the Preacher(s) or Pasteur(s). It is not my intention to offend anyone by equating the organization of a church or congregation to that of a business, but it does help me illustrate my point, which is, that losing one member of a congregation can disrupt the income of said church. Losing several members, even more so. And losing the largest donor(s), could cause a congregation to close down.

This begs the obvious question: Is it not, based on this theory, in the best interest of the preacher to “protect” his followers from leaving to another church, let alone leave for another faith? In my opinion, this could be at the root of some of the hatred and animosity generated towards the LDS faith from some leaders of the Baptist church. Why else then would Mormons be singled out and not Jews, Muslims, Catholics, or members of any other faith for that matter? Granted, there are some other faiths singled out as well, but not any of the “mainstream” religions, as far as I am aware (if you know differently, please comment below).

So the question remains, is Mormonism preached to be a cult based on its beliefs about Christ visiting his “other sheep” in the Americas? Or its second book of scripture: The Book of Mormon? Its temples? Its sacred garments? Its belief in eternal marriages? Its belief in the restored priesthood? Or, is it based on simple economics? Or is it both?

Please leave us your thoughts below.

As somewhat of a disclaimer, I must recognize that not all leaders feel this “hatred or animosity.” I have several neighbors who are admirable examples of their faith and who live amongst many LDS families and stand as an example of how a good “Christian” should be. I serve on boards with many of these stalwart examples, and am confident that they are not among those who spread fear, lies and hatred about members of the LDS faith. 

 

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3 Responses to “What’s Wrong with the Mormons?”

  1. Horebite said

    I think it’s probably a little of both–concern for souls as well as the wallet. I sometimes wonder about the “us-versus-them” mentality that I think some Mormons (and probably some of the anti-Mormon preachers) have. When we talk about the growing numbers in the church, that usually makes us happy. But are we happy because there are more souls who are coming to Christ, or are we happy because our team is winning?

  2. Jonathan said

    Hopefully we’re happy that souls are “coming unto Christ,” but on that note I can’t ignore that Baptists or those of other faiths who lose their members to Mormonism probably feel the opposite. Meaning, when some convert to the LDS faith they probably feel that they have left the good flock and are now lost.

  3. Carlos U. said

    I think that part of the reason for that special animous is that we are the true church, and the truth has always been persecuted. That’s my spiritual exlplanation. Are there other reasons? Yes, but many other groups have them (or similar ones) also, without generating that kind of hatred.

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