Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints ( Mormons) In the United States of America, many of us have at least run in to or seen a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints also known as a Mormon.
This religion founded on April 6, 1830 by Joseph Smith at first had only a small following.. Smith believes that in the year 1823 that he was visited by an Angel of God who basically told him of these ancient hebrew text that spoke of the Israelites once living in the Americas a long time ago. In 1830 Smith finished writing an english translation of that same hebrew text the angel showed him and other writings.
He ultimatly published this writing naming it The Book of Mormon. The next step was Smith actually establishing the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter- Day Saints. The key part of this though is after Smith’s death in 1844, Brigham Young stepped up to the plate and took a group of Mormons who were being targeted in Illinois to the Salt Lake Valley of Utah and settled there. Soon after other Mormons coming in the masses of thousands settled in Utah. This is why majority of Mormons in the United States reside in Utah.
The key people of the faith are the founder Joseph Smith and Brigham Young because he founded a refuge city for Mormons in Salt Lake City, Utah and helped found BYU. Mormons are viewed to have some of the most unorthodox practices and beliefs out of most major religions in the United States of America. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints value family quite highly they believe its “an eternal unit and central to God’s plan”. Mormons just like other Christians celebrate two of Christianity’s biggest holidays which are Easter and Christmas. Mormons respect Sunday as the Lord’s holy day just like Christians, except unlike most Christians, Mormons typically spend 3 hours at the church unlike most Christians who only spend 1. One Mormon belief that surprises most is that marriage is eternal. This means that if you get a civil divorce through the state in the Mormon Church eyes you are still eternally married, it would take a high ranking priest to do an official Mormon divorce which is considered something very bad among the religion. Contrary to popular belief polygamy is banned in the church of Latter Day Saints.
Before learning this I always thought that was one thing Mormons were well known for. Apparently you will get banned from the Church if you practice polygamy. The ormon equivalent of a Christian church is the Mormon Temple.
This can be considered one of the most sacred spaces for Mormons. In the Mormon temple many sacred rituals of the Church of Latter Day Saints take place inside. The Mormons believe that God’s presence is truly in the temple making it holy. The Catholic church does not scorn The Church of Latter Day Saints for their unorthodox beliefs neither do they condone them for their unorthodox beliefs but do backup any good intentions and historically accurate practices of the Christian tradition.
One thing that Mormons do not believe in that Catholics live by is the holy trinity. The structure of the Church of Latter Day Saints can be broken up into 6 parts from top to bottom in hierarchy. At the top is what is called The First Presidency which only includes 3 people which are the president/prophet he is the face of the church and considered a prophet who can speak with God, the other two members of The First presidency are First and Second Counselor. The next group down in the hierarchy is the quorum of the 12 apostles. Below this group is the quorum of 70 which are 70 members elected by the apostles and they are in charge of overseeing local church leaders.
Below this group is the Stake Presidency which consists of around 3000 members and whose purpose is to select high priests, unlike the other groups mentioned from here down these groups are only part time. Under them with around 30,000 followers is the Ward Bishopric are where most males are who are not high in the priesthood.The last and lowest would be considered as all the members every normal member has a role to play such as teaching sunday school, this sector has around 14 million members with only approximately only 9 million of those residing in North America . The Church of Latter Day Saints has around 16 million members currently with majority of them 84% or so to be exact being white. Today there are 159 temples of the Church of Latter Day Saints.
Five points of the Mormon faith that really stuck out to me were how the religion was founded, the hierarchy of the church, the mormon temple, eternal marriage, and how polygamy is actually wrong in the Church of Latter day Saints and the ones who practice that are small broken off sects. In conclusion, The Church of Latter day Saints is a Christian religion but just not how we typically imagine like baptists, lutherans, and others they have unorthodox practices and a questionable sacred text.