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Question and Answer 36

Does the Mormon faith celebrate Christmas, I did not know the answer (asked by Tipper on 01/17/00)

Yes, they do! See the Christmas page for more information

Do Mormons believe that Christmas is a celebration of the birth of Jesus? (asked by Buckley on 01/17/00)

Yes, they do! See the Christmas page for more information

Is it possable for a non-mormon to marry a mormon?  (asked by Anonymous on 1/23/00)

See Dating and Marrying Nonmembers

Do Mormons opposed the Equal Rights Amendment? (asked by Christina on 01/23/00)

The First Presidency endorse equal rights for women but opposed the Equal Rights Amendment as an improper means to a desirable end.  In 1976, after years of silence on political issues, the Church issued a statement opposing the ERA: "We recognize men and women as equally important before the Lord, but with differences biologically, emotionally, and in other ways. ERA, we believe, does not recognize these differences. There are better means for giving women, and men, the rights they deserve" ("First Presidency Issues Statement Opposing Equal Rights Amendment," Ensign 6 [Dec. 1976]:79).

(See Teachings About Motherhood and the Role of Women home page; Politics home page)

1499:  On 01/23/00, Mark asked:  Do you know if it says any where that we are suppose to take the sacrament with our right hand?

President Joseph Fielding Smith taught:

"We take the sacrament with the right hand." ( Doctrines of Salvation, Vol.3, p.108)

1498:  On 01/23/00, Sally said:  I find it hard to reconcile the fact that almost 4000 changes have been made to the book of Mormon considering the words of Joseph Smith himself from History of the Church, 1841, "I told the brethren that the book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth" and that Joseph F.Smith 6th president of the Mormon Church said " Joseph did not render the writing on the gold plates into the English language in his own style of language as many people believe, but every word and every letter was given to him by the gift and power of God"(Journal of Oliver B Huntingdonp.168). The latter quote did not say "meaning" he said "every word and every  letter". Can you explain this?

See Changes to the Book of Mormon

1496:  On 01/23/00, Diane asked:  I would like to get directions from the hmanitarian center for "Leper Bandages" (crocheted) and for emergency teddy bears (for the police and fire departments).  Do you have an address where I can get these materials?

The main operator at Church headquarters can be reached at (U.S.) 1-800-453-3860.  Ask for the Humanitarian Aid Department.

What do you know about a talk given in 1976 by Boyd K. Packer, advocating violence to homosexuals, saying "someone had to do it"? (asked by Linda on 01/23/00) 

Boyd K. Packer's talk is called To Young Men Only (the quote "someone had to do it" does not appear anywhere in the talk).

1494:  On 01/23/00, a visitor asked:  I don't know if you get these kind of questions alot, but I am a practicing Baptist Christian (Baptised and all) that has come to develop a certain friendship with a young Mormon woman.  We have so much in common, and I want to date her, however our religious backgrounds seem so different-after all, God isn't just someone you can put on hold to go on a Date.  What should I do?

See Dating and Marrying Nonmembers

1493:  On 01/23/00, Joel asked:  I am looking for the talk "To the Youth of the Noble Birthright" given by President Ezra Taft Benson in the May 1986 Ensign.

See To the Young Men of the Priesthood

1492:  On 01/23/00, Doug asked:  What is the doctorinal difference between LDS and RLDS?

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are seperate Churches with different beliefs and teachings.   I would not feel comfortable describing the RLDS beliefs lest I inadvertantly misrepresent them.  No one can acurately describe someone else's beliefs.  Your best bet is to ask them about their beliefs first hand and make your own comparison.   (See Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)

1491:  On 01/23/00, Mike asked:  Many people refer to Mormons as a major Cult Following. How do you respond to this.

See Is the Church a Cult?

1490:  On 01/23/00, a visitor asked:  My son, being raised a Presbyterian, has fallen deeply in love with a young women in the Mormon faith.  He has also recently been baptised into the Mormon faith  We have met this young women and find her a wonderful person.  They are talking marriage.  I have read through the website and understand the Eternal Marriage.   What kind of marriage ceremony is done if they do decide to marry?  Are we, as outsiders to the faith, welcome to this wonderful event in our sons life?  Is there a ceremony similar to a Presbyterian Church wedding? Are we welcomed into the temple?? Is there a place that I can find out more about this??   Any information would be appreciated as I plead total ignorance.

See the Why is A Temple Recommend Needed to Enter the Temple? article for an answer to these questions.

1489:  On 01/23/00, a visitor asked:  This is a long standing question that I run into often.  If one is married and has the habit of sexually relieving oneself through self stimulation, do you need to talk to the bishop?  If it is an old habit that keeps cropping up does one talk to the bishop after every occurrence?

See Masturbation

1488:  On 01/23/00, Kyle asked:  My wife and I were asked to give a talk this coming Sunday in Sacrament meeting on "Blessings from heeding the words of the Prophet".  I was wondering if there was some reference material on your site that may help us to prepare a talk?  Are there any conference talks that may address this particular topic?  I can think of a gazillion things, but I lack references... Any help would be greatly appreciated.  Please email to the address below!  Thank you.

See Following the Prophets home page

1487:  On 01/22/00, Ed asked:  Hi, I have been an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints all my life.  I'm starting to prepare for my mission and I am looking forward to it.  However, I am on different medications for social anxiety and attention deficit disorder.  I also have epilepsy.  I used to take medicine for epilepsy when I was younger, but when I got older, the doctors said I didn't need anymore.  But every five years I'm supposed to have an "eeg" to see if I am still having seizures.  The last two "eeg's" I had found seizures when I hyperventilate and when I see flashing lights.  The last "eeg" I had was about two years ago.  I was wondering, would these seizures and the fact that I am on medication prevent the Church from letting me go on a mission? 

The Church makes great effort to allow all young men, including those with medical problems, the opportunity to serve a mission.  Your Bishop and doctor would most likely discuss your specific situation to see if serving a mission would be possible.   (See Missionary Work home page)

1486:  On 01/22/00, Brittney asked:  I need info on the leaders of the church

See Church Leaders home page

1485:  On 01/22/00, Melanie asked:  I was viewing your site and wondering if you could give me a little background on the LDS theology regarding the second coming of Christ. 

See Second Coming of Jesus Christ home page

1484:  On 01/22/00, Matt asked:  if everyone goes to heaven as you say but just differend reward for good deeds done in thier bodies, then what did Jesus die for, cause i know you belive in jesus, just not the right jesus. thanks, and all the momons are in my prayers.

See Grace vs. Works; Do Latter-day Saints Believe in a Different Jesus?

1483:  On 01/22/00, Rebekah asked:  I just visited your website and found that the Church of Jesus Christ of  Latter-Day Saints considers itself to be a Christian church. I was always taught that we are saved by faith alone, and we need to do absolutely nothing but believe in the promise. What do the LDS teach must happen for salvation?

See Salvation

1482:  On 01/22/00, Kim asked:  I have heard that the God that you worship was once a man like us, is this true?  And if it is true, could you direct me to where this belief comes from?

See Overview of Beliefs About God the Father

1482:  On 01/22/00, Leigh asked:  i was also wondering if there were any expectations of the members of other words, i guess waht i'm trying to ask is, what do you have to do to become an LDS member?

See Joining the Church

1481:  On 01/22/00, Leigh asked:  i was just wondering how you worship..are there hymns that you sing during a service...or certain prayers that you there a typical prayer that you say when you do pray?...

An outline of our worship services can be found in The Visitor's Guide.

1480:  On 01/22/00, Paul asked:  I got a question, I'm dating this girl that is a Mormon, and we are very serious, matter of fact we are in love, she will be going on a mission in Utah soon, and I have nothing against that, and have nothing against Mormons, the only problem we have is that I'm catholic, but I don't practice it as much.  So my girlfriend and I love each other so much, and I do encourage my girlfriend to follow her religion.  She always tells me too bad I wasn't a Mormon, but I always tell her I would do anything for her, but trying to make me a Mormon shouldn't have to prove anything, just whatever your heart tells you to do shouldn't be bad or a sin, as long as your happy.  So anyway, would her church and religion disown her, cause I'm a Catholic.

See Dating and Marrying Nonmembers

1479:  On 01/22/00, Nicoletta asked:  I visited your web page on mormons, and I don't fully understand what a mormon is exactly. It seems to me that a mormon is similar to a Christian, but what are the differences between a Christian and a Mormon? Also, I heard that a Mormon is also called a Satanist. Is this true? In addition, could you please let me know what Latter-day Saints are?

See Are Mormons Christians?

1478:  On 01/22/00, Kate asked: What do the Mormons consider their place in the world today?

See The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

1477:  On 01/22/00, Kate asked:  Are there any rituals celebrated that are distinctive to the Mormon faith?

See Priesthood Ordinances home page

1476:  On 01/22/00, a visitor asked: I am a former member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  I would like to know, if I were interested in joining the Church again, would I have to be baptized again? 

If you were not excommunicated or formally had your name removed from the records, then you would not need to be baptized again.  You simply need to start attending Church again.  If you were excommunicated or had your name removed, then you would need to be baptized again.   The best thing to do is discuss with the Bishop of the local LDS congregation and he can counsel you regarding your specific situation. (See Fellowshipping Members home page)

1475:  On 01/22/00, Kim asked:  Why do Mormons do baptisms for the dead? Do you have current leaders that explain this to new members

Why do we do Baptisms for the Dead? Salvation for the dead is the system where under those who would have accepted the gospel in this life had they been permitted to hear it, will have the chance to accept it in the spirit world, and will then be entitled to all the blessings which passed them by in mortality. The Doctrine and Covenants teaches:

"Thus came the voice of the Lord unto me, saying: All who have died without a knowledge of this gospel, who would have received it if they had been permitted to tarry, shall be heirs of the celestial kingdom of God; Also all that shall die henceforth without a knowledge of it, who would have received it with all their hearts, shall be heirs of that kingdom; For I, the Lord, will judge all men according to their works, according to the desire of their hearts." (D&C 137:7-9, emphasis added)

After people join the Church, they are given six gospel lessons, called the New Member Discussions.  Lesson #5 talks about this important aspect of the gospel.  Also, Baptism for the dead is discussed numerous other places, like the Gospel Principles Manual.  (See Teachings About Temples home page)

1474:  On 01/22/00, Cynthia asked:  Can a non-member submit names of dead family members for temple work?

Yes.  (See Family History home page)

1473:  On 01/21/00, Peter asked:  I am of the opinion that President Kimball's pronouncements about homosexuality conveyed a very different message to that of President Hinckley.   Kimball refers to homosexuality as THE MOST HEINOUS SIN whereas Hinckley does appear to treat the matter on an equal footing with heterosexual conduct as you say.   How do you account for this difference?  Kimballs approach would just have fostered bigotry.

Latter-day Saints consider sexual sin be very, very serious.  After learning his son had visited a prostitute, the Prophet Alma said:

"Know ye not, my son, that these things are an abomination in the sight of the Lord; yea, most abominable above all sins save it be the shedding of innocent blood or denying the Holy Ghost?" (The Book of Mormon, Alma 39:5)

The Church does not distinguish between premarital sex, adultery, homosexuality, rape, or any other kind of sexual misconduct, as they are all essentially the same in God's eyes and all bring the penalties of damnation without complete and thorough repentance.  (See Teachings About Sexuality home page)

1472:  On 01/21/00, a visitor asked:  How do you feel about Joseph Smith being a Mason, being that the Mormon temple has too many things the same about a Mason one to be a coincidence, even down to the fig apron?   And if the book of Mormon is the "fullness of the gospel", meaning we don't need anything else, where in the book of Mormon speak about baptisms for the dead,   the sealing of marriage, the endowment ceremony, etc.??

See Masonry and the Temple and Does the Book of Mormon Contain the Fullness of the Gospel?

1471:  On 01/21/00, a visitor asked:  i just wanted to know what is considered a date and what can you do before you are 16? IS a group of friends with like 5 girls and 4 boys a date? what ages does the church say that it is OK to single date?

Five girls and four boys is a group date. In cultures where dating is appropriate, group dating should not occur until you are sixteen years old.  Since the purpose of single dating is to choose a marriage partner, single dating should not occur until one has reached the appropriate level of maturity.  In other words if you aren't old enough to get married, then you aren't old enough to single date.  President Spencer W. Kimball said:

"Dating in the earlier teen-age years leads to early steady dating with its multiplicity of dangers and problems, and frequently to early and disappointing marriage. This too-young dating is not uncommon and is often done with parental approval. Yet it is near criminal to subject a tender child to the temptations of maturity. Early marriages, which are almost certain of failure, are usually the result of steady, early dating, whereas a proper preparation for marriage is a well-timed courtship." (The Miracle of Forgiveness, p.223)

(See Dating and Courtship home page)

1470:  On 01/21/00, Nia asked:  Why do you use the Book of Mormon? The Bible clearly states in Proverbs 30:5 "Every word of Gpd is flawless; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.  Do not add to his words, or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar."  Revelation 22:18-19 "I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds anything to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book.  And if anyone takes words away from this book of prophecy, God will take away from him his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book."   So, I just wanted to know why Mormons seem to think that The Book of Mormon is ok to use.

See Adding to the Bible -- Rev. 22:18

1469:  On 01/21/00, George asked:  When it comes to proof, what kinds of proof has been found to sustain that the situations in the Book of Mormon actually happened. (The wars, the horses, etc.)I have heard all kinds of anti-people who say there is no proof, and when I have asked members, they tell me that there is substantial proof, but no one seems to know what it is. Do you know it, or at least no where I could look to learn about it for myself?

See Book of Mormon Criticism home page

1468:  On 01/21/00, Moana asked:  I am a member of the church and would like to know where the church stands on  cremation.   I know that we are encouraged to bury our loved ones but there are exceptions due to laws of some countries.  Why are we encouraged to bury our loved ones since the Lord can restore all that was lost, in the

See Cremation

1467:  On 01/21/00, Jane asked:  Under what circumstances would a Mormon be excommunicated and why is this necessary?

See Disciplinary Procedures

1466:  01/21/00, Kelsey asked:  If a man and woman were both sealed to separate spouses and then their spouses died and they were remarried for time only. If they had children who would the children be sealed to?

The children would be sealed to the mother and the husband to whom she is sealed.   (See Marriage for Eternity)

1465:  01/21/00, Sara asked:  What can you tell me about Charles Anthon?

See Anthon Transcript

1464:  On 01/20/00, Brent asked:  It is my understanding that the LDS Church teaches that Christ paid for all of the sins of mankind in Gethsemane, and that His death on the cross was to provide for a universal resurrection rather than to pay the price of individual human sins.  In light of this teaching, how do you interpret and explain New Testament references that seem to indicate that Christ's expiation of sin occurred on Calvary? (see Romans 6:10, 1Corinthians 15:3, Colossians 1:20, and 1Peter 2:24)

Unfortunately, the information you have received is incorrect.  First, Latter-day Saints believe the atonement process began when Jesus was in the Garden of Gethsemane and took upon himself the sins of the world.  The atonement was actually completed after his suffering and eventual death upon the Cross at Calvary (See Crucifixion).  Second, the "infinite and eternal sacrifice" (The Book of Mormon, Alma 34:10) associated with the atonement covered all sins by every person who has ever lived.  However, it is only applied to those who have accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord, King, and God and entered into sincere Christian discipleship. (See The Atonement of Jesus Christ home page)

1463:  On 01/20/00, Julie asked:  Do you believe in the rapture If so can you explain this to me?  From the church I go to they tell me this is the second coming of Christ.

Latter-day Saints don't use the term rapture in our theology.  We do believe in the Second Coming of Jesus Christ.  (See Second Coming of Jesus Christ home page)

1462:  On 01/20/00, Abi asked:  It says clearly in the Bible that we shouldnt add anything to Gods word or take away anything from it. Isnt the BOOK OF MORMAN an addition to Gods word ?

See Adding to the Bible -- Rev. 22:18

1461:  On 01/20/00, Janis asked:  If we are all to become Gods then why should we worship just one, cause if he can save us and put us in heaven, why can't anyone who has died do that for us.  Example, Say if your friend who walked in the way of Mormonism to his death at a young age, according to you he becomes a God.  He wouldn't he be able to save you now, no matter if you were the greatest sinner of the day.  He is as powerful as God almighty if he becomes a God himself.  Just a question that was on my mind.  There is only one God and one King, if you die do you know where you are going for sure?  I know where I am going!

While we believe that the faithful will enjoy a life similar to our Heavenly Father, we also believe we will still be subject to and worship the God of Heaven, which is represented as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. Furthermore, while we will be "gods, even the sons of God" (D&C 76:58), we will never be at the same level as them or stop worshipping them, but we will be like them and enjoy a quality of life similar to theirs.  (See Biblical Support for Deification)

1460:  On 01/20/00, Helene asked:  I understand that in the LDS church a husband and wife are married for "Time and Eternity".  Does that mean that if one spouse dies the other is not free to marry again?

If a widow marries again, then the marriage is for time only, and she does so for mortal companionship only, with the full expectation that she will be reunited with her eternal spouse (i.e., the husband to whom they are sealed) after she dies. The second marriage applies only to this world and ends at death.  Any children born under the second marriage are considered to be the offspring of the first marriage.  In other words, similar to the Biblical practice of "raising up seed to your brother" (See Genesis 38:8-9), any children born under the second marriage belong under the covenant of the first marriage, from an eternal perspective. If a widower dies he may be sealed to another woman with the full expectation that he will have both women as his wives in eternity. (See Eternal Marriage; Plural Marriage home page)

1459:  On 01/20/00, a visitor asked:  Is Kolob the sun? Where is Kolob?

See Kolob

1458:  On 01/20/00, a visitor asked:  What is the official policy regarding cremation? 

See Cremation

1457:  On 01/20/00, a visitor asked:  Who are the Mormons?  What was the Mormons reform group?

See The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

1456:  On 01/20/00, Jenni asked:  As part of a school project i require, if possible, a small amount of information on how the mormons feel about the following:  Who is jesus chirst? How can man reach salvation?

See Teachings About Jesus Christ home page; Salvation

1455:  On 01/19/00, Daisy asked:  Also, I have accumulated a small library of books references The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  I would love to add to it a copy of a Hymnal.  Having visited Sacrament Meetings, etc., I have noticed that the collection of hymns is very beautiful and almost seems like the entire Church's doctrine set to music.  Would you be able to direct me in how I might go about obtaining one for my own?  I'm not really sure if I could purchase one somewhere or if I am even allowed to have one.

Hymn books can be ordered from the Church Distribution Center can be reached at 1-800-537-5950 for U.S./ 1-800-453-3860, ext. 2031 for Canada.

1454:  On 01/19/00, Daisy asked:  I am curious about the origin and true meaning of CTR (Choose the Right).  Also, I am not a member of the Church, but have studied it very thoroughly for about 6 years, would it be inappropriate as a nonmember to wear a CTR ring?

A small committee of women came up with the idea of the CTR rings in 1970. CTR, or Choose the Right, is the name of a Primary class for children.  The purpose of the rings (or necklaces, etc.) is to help inspire those who wear them to make correct choices, consistent with the gospel values that they have been taught.  Today, many Latter-day Saints (including adults) wear CTR jewelry.  Unlike temple garments which should only be worn by endowed Latter-day Saints due to their religious meaning, CTR rings are a cultural item associated with the Church, and are therefore appropriately worn by anyone wishing to "Choose the Right".

1453:  On 01/19/00, Ron asked:  I am a Christian of non-denomination, and would like to know what steps, in the LDS faith, must be taken in order to achieve salvation?

See Salvation

1452:  On 01/19/00, a visitor asked:  where can I get the book of Mormon?

The Book of Mormon is a volume of sacred writings comparable to the Bible. Its principal purpose is to testify of the divinity of Jesus Christ and the truthfulness of his teachings. For a free copy, call (U.S.) 1-800-528-2225.

1451:  On 01/19/00, Kenneth asked:  Can you tell me what the rules are for exaltation? 

See Exaltation

1450:  On 01/19/00, Susan asked:  I have yet to find a source or any sort of church policy regarding organ donation or organ recipient.  I have been asked many times regarding this issue but I don't know what to say.  I would appreciate knowing the church's standing on this issue and where to find it. 

See Organ Transplants and Donations

1449:  On 01/18/00, Louise asked:  A co-worker who is Mormon is getting married.  Some of us are invited to the wedding ... but, actually, not the wedding ceremony, only the reception.  Another co-worker explained to me that unless you are of the Mormon faith, you cannot attend the wedding ceremony.  Is this true, and if so, why, can you explain? 

Temple Marriages occur within the walls of a dedicated temple.  Since only faithful members of the Church are eligible to enter a dedicated temple, only faithful members, who hold a temple recommend, will be present at a temple marriage ceremony. (See Why Do You Need a Recommend to Enter the Temple?)

1448:  On 01/18/00, Louise asked:  When my employer's daughter was planning to be married, I caught bits and pieces about the goings on and what was to be done and what was expected.  One of the things I loosely caught was that when a couple marries and consummates the marriage, the consummation takes place with a barrier between them ...?  Is this true, which doesn't make sense to me, and if so, why is this.   Thank you.

No, it's not true.  (See Teachings About Sexuality home page)

1447:  On 01/18/00, Rebekah asked:  I am a member of the church and have several body piercing some visible, my question is what is the church's stand point on this fad? Also could you please give me scriptural references as well as references made by the prophet and other church leaders.  Thank you for your help, an answer would be greatly appreciated.

Since the physical body is considered a sacred temple for the Holy Spirit, the Church discourages members from disfiguring themselves with tattoos and/or body piercings.   Prospective missionaries are usually disqualified from missionary service for such markings.  (See Tattoos)

1446:  On 01/18/00, a visitor asked:  Could you please tell me of a church near Winston-Salem,North Carolina. I live in Lexington,NC.

Our Meeting House Locator lists the following location:

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints
4780 Westchester Road, Winston Salem, NC 27103
(336) 765-6468

1445:  On 01/18/00, Tyler asked:  Why are men commanded to serve missions where as women are not?  To someone out of the church, where a simple answer being that it is asked of god just does not cut it.  Is there more into this, more that I am unaware of?  Also why are women not given the chance to go on missions until they are 21?  I know that the church does not look up to men more than women, this I know.  But to many, outside of the church, they believe this.   Please help.

See Women and Missionary Service

1444:  On 01/17/00, Mickie asked:  I am at present an in-active member who would like to become active again.
Is there a group for people like me to talk to?  Online or otherwise?     Also, how would I go about receiving a copy of my Patriarchal Blessing that was done about 19 years ago?  Thank You!

The best thing to do is find a local LDS congregation and just show up for Sunday services.  After sacrament meeting, you could ask for a member of the Bishopric and they will be able to help you.  Your patriarchal blessing can be obtained from Church headquarters at 1-800-453-3860.

1443:  On 01/17/00, Tony asked:  If the temple ordinances or wearing of sacred garments have been designed by Heavenly Father why is there any need to change or simplify them?

See Changes to the Temple Ceremonies

1442:  On 01/17/00, David asked:  How come Mormons teach that you can be your own god if the Bible it says," You shall have no other gods before Me." Exodus 20:3-17 ( Ten Commandments)

See Biblical Support for Deification

1441:  On 01/17/00, David asked:  How come Mormons added to the Bible if in the Bible it says,"For I testify to anyone who hears the words of my prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book." Revelation 22:18.  If you "believe"in the Bible how come you regarded this passage?

See Adding to the Bible -- Rev. 22:18

1440:  On 01/17/00, Jason asked:  Do Mormons believe in Evolution?  If so, why.

See Evolution

1439:  On 01/17/00, Jeff asked:  What is the Mormon stance on Roman Catholicism?

See Mormonism and Catholicism

1438:  On 01/17/00, Jeff asked:  What is the position of Mormons on evolution?  I know they believe in creationism like most religions, but it's possible to believe in both.  I've never really got a straight answer from anyone else so I would really appreciate a detailed answer.

See Evolution

1437:  On 01/17/00, a visitor asked:  could you please explain to me what the Mormon marriage ceremony is like.

See Eternal Marriage

1436:  On 01/17/00, Jim asked:  I just want to know which books the Mormon Church considers to be inspired as scripture. Are the books; The Book of Mormon,  The Doctrine of the Covenants, The Pearl of Great Price, and the Bible?

Latter-day Saints accept, in addition to the Bible, the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants, and the Pearl of Great Price. These four scriptural collections are called the Standard Works. (See Scriptural Writings home page)

1435:  On 01/17/00, Jim asked:  Why do LDS celebrate Christmas in December?  It is clearly the wrong time of the year for the savior's birth. As far as I can see the date was chosen  as with other "Christian" holidays because of a pagan celebration falling on that date.

See Why Do We Celebrate Christmas on December 25?

1434:  On 01/17/00, Jim asked:  What is the Book of Abraham?  It doesn't seem to be in my "Book of Mormon".  Can you tell me what "(Book of Abraham, pp. 34-35; Abra. 3:3-9.) ( Mormon Doctrine, p.428)" says please? 

See Book of Abraham

1433:  On 01/17/00, Joanne asked:  Do you know a website where I can find a pamphlet called: "Your Pre-Earth Life"?

See Your Pre-Earth Life

1432:  On 01/17/00, Joe asked:  I had a question. How did the Universe get here? I was wondering if there was any info on whether the Church teaches an eternal or created Universe.

See The Creation home page

1431:  On 01/17/00, Joe asked:  What is the official Church policy on Organ Donation's of it's deceased members?

See Organ Transplants and Donations

1430:  On 01/17/00, John asked:  I  have been asking a long time now---CAN MEMBERS OF YOUR CHURCH DRINK  DECF TEA OR COFFEE

The word of wisdom forbids the partaking of tea and coffee by Latter-day Saints.  While many Church members believe the presence of caffeine in these substances is the reason for the prohibition, the Lord has never issued confirmation to the Church.  The Church has never exempted decaffeinated versions of tea and coffee from the list of banned substances. (See Word of Wisdom; Why Are Certain Things Forbidden by the Word of Wisdom?)

1429:  On 01/17/00, Kristin asked:  Are Mormons permitted to marry outside of their faith?  I am a 16 year old female of the Roman Catholic faith, and i am interested in the Mormon religion. Are Catholicism and Mormonism on totally opposite ends of the religious spectrum?

See Dating and Marrying Nonmembers; Mormonism and Catholicism

1428:  On 01/17/00, Kristin asked:  Can a nonmember receive a recommend?  Can a member marry a nonmember within the temple?   If not, what steps must be completed in order to be married within the temple?

See Temple Recommend; Eternal Marriage

1427:  On 01/17/00, Mel asked:  i know that this is a stupid question, but my kids have been told that President Hinckley gave a talk saying that we are not supposed to drink Coke. (But even though chocolate as like derivatives as caffeine) it is OK to have chocolate.  This supposedly was in the Ensign, have any such articles been printed like this.

Many Church leaders have counseled Latter-day Saints to avoid caffeinated beverages because of the large amount of caffeine present.  While it is not considered a technical violation of the Word of Wisdom, Church leaders have felt it is a violation of the intent of the health code (i.e., spirit of the law) because caffeine in large amounts can cause behavioral changes and is not healthy for the body.  (See Cola Drinks)

1426:  On 01/17/00, Michelle asked:  Did Jesus Christ, the Son of God, marry and produce offspring?

See Why Was Jesus Never Married?

1425:  On 01/17/00, Michelle asked:  Is it true that thousands of words are copied from the King James Version to the Book of Mormon?

See Did Joseph Smith Plagiarize From the King James Version of the Bible?

1424:  On 01/17/00, a visitor asked:  if i lived in a country where polygamy was allowed and i was in a polygamist marriage and wanted to be baptized into the LDS church. would i have to leave my second wife. i personally would say no but was wondering if i was wrong.  when living with a girlfriend and wanting to be baptized into the LDS church i would have to marry her first and repent of that sin. or not live with her. but what if i was in a country where polygamy was allowed and have 2 girlfriends with children from both and we lived as a polygamist family but was not married to either of them. would i be required to marry both of them to be baptized into the LDS church. or would i have to leave one of them. what would be the standard on both scenarios.

Men who have more than one wife are not presently eligible for baptism, even if the practice is legal in their country.  In such a situation, the Church would encourage you to live as close to God as possible and wait until a future time.  The Church would not encourage you to break up your family units and abandon the wife and children you are responsible for supporting, in order to meet the technical requirements of baptism.  This would be a violation of the spirit of the gospel law.  From time to time in the history of the world, the gospel has not been preached to all people for various reasons.  Living in a plural relationship today makes one ineligible to receive the gospel at this time.  (See Plural Marriage home page)

1423:  On 01/17/00, Noa asked:  I heard that the old temple endowment has been changed due to fact women of the Mormon church didn't like the fac to had to obey their husband and they consider pastor of all other churches to be servants of Satan could you explain this?

Latter-day Saints do not discuss the teachings of the temple outside of its sacred walls due to their sacred nature.  For information about the temple ordinances in general, see Teachings About the Temple home page.  For information about why temple teachings are adjusted periodically, see Changes to the Temple Ceremonies.

Regarding your specific question, the information you received is incorrect.  In recent years, the Church has made greater attempts in various forums to convey the message that a father's authority is only valid when it is used in a manner consistent with the principles of righteousness and the will of God.  In other words, a father has no authority over his family if he attempts to use his authority in an unrighteous manner.   However, this greater emphasis is not a change in doctrine.  The same doctrine has always been taught.  For example, in 1853, Brigham Young taught:

"It is not my general practice to counsel the sisters to disobey their husbands. . . . But I never counselled a woman to follow her husband to the Devil." (Discourses of Brigham Young, p. :200-01)

The Church has always taught and still teaches that if a husband issues righteous counsel to his wife, then she should obey it.

Regarding your second question, the Church has never taught that all leaders of all other Churches are servants of Satan.  This is simply untrue.  We have taught and continue to teach that some leaders of some other Churches serve the cause of Satan, whether knowingly or unknowingly, by attempting to keep people from accepting the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ. (See "Mormonism" and Christendom)

1422:  On 01/17/00, Koni asked:  I am talking in church tomorrow on Sunday School History, I have been looking at everything I own, or could get my hands on...there is not really anything to choose from..

See Sunday School

1421:  On 01/17/00, a visitor asked:  is plurality of wives necessary to reach the highest exaltation in the celestial kingdom--to become a god?

See Is Plural Marriage Necessary for Exaltation?

1420:  On 01/17/00, Patricia asked:  Hi.   My good friend is a Mormon living in Salt Lake City.  I was trying to get her Christmas present together.  I bought her a wooden box with an angel painted on it.   I was wondering if this was an appropriate gift.  I am unsure of what Mormons believe regarding angels.

I am sure she will love it.  See our Angels article for a summary of LDS beliefs regarding angels.

1419:  On 01/17/00, Sara asked:  This is a great site! A very good friend of mine is Mormon and she and her boyfriend discussed getting married once he returns from his mission. I know that Mormon Temple Weddings are different from most traditional weddings. I was wondering if you could tell me what those differences are and what customarily happens during a Temple Marriage. Also, those who are not members of the church are allowed to attend the weddings, correct? Thanks for the help. :-)

See Eternal Marriage and Why is a Temple Recommend Necessary to Enter the Temple?

1418:  On 01/17/00, Skye asked:  Do prospective elders have the authority to perform baptisms? What constitutes this authority?

A person holding the office of Priest in the Aaronic Priesthood or any Melchizedek Priesthood holder has the authority to baptize, under the direction of the local authorities.   (See Baptism)

1417:  On 01/17/00, Mark asked:  I was unable to find the page about Freemasonry and Mormonism.  Is it still available?

See Freemasonry and Mormonism

1414:  On 01/17/00, Diane asked:  My daughter is 8 and asks me weekly when she is going to go to church. She went to a Christian pre school and is very interested in religion, God and wants to go to church very badly.  I don't currently belong to any church. My Fiancée is Mormon but has not attended church in many years.  We live together and he says we cant attend because of this. I am looking at a LDS church in Glendale for my daughter. My question is, can she go, can I go? What needs to be done in order for us to go? I want her to get involved in youth groups and I have heard that the LDS church has some very good ones. Please help!

Both you and your daughter (as well as your fiancee) are welcome to attend Church services at a local LDS congregation.   Your fiancee is referring to the Church policy that states that only those who keep the law of chastity are able to be baptized into membership.  (See Law of Chastity)

1413:  On 01/17/00, Cathy asked:   am a nursing student with a cultural/religion assignment.  My assignment is to write a report about how Mormons feel about death.  For is the body prepared?  What are your views about organ donation, autopsy? What special death rituals are observed?  What is a typical funeral like?  The nursing students in my class are asked to write about other cultures or religions so we can have a better understanding of patience with different backgrounds than are own.  Your time is very much appreciated!!!

See Death and Dying; Attitudes Toward Health, Medicine, and Fitness

1412:  On 01/17/00, Jennifer asked: I am looking for the History of the Mormons and how it began.  If you don't have that information, I would even appreciate it if you would point me in the right direction for that information. 

See Church History home page

1411:  On 01/17/00, Harry asked:  I am not interested in demeaning Baptists or tearing them down or anything, but they have a claim called The Trail of Blood, by J.M. Carroll that states that they Baptist church can trace its lineage from Christ to the present day.  Is this true?

While other organizations may promote good, I do not believe that any church other than The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints holds apostolic authority. (See Interfaith Relations home page)

1410:  On 1/17/00, Laura asked:  hi, i am from the north and have never really been exposed to Mormons until i came to college in the south.  i was wondering why the women always need to wear things on their head and skirts or dresses, and the
men don't.

As long as its modest (See Modesty in Dress), Latter-day Saints typically where the same style of clothes as most other people in our respective cultures.  You might have us confused with another religious group.

1409:  On 1/17/00, Yuriy asked:  What are Mormons' views on Judaism? If I understood correctly, Judaism and Mormonism are very similar from a   good point of view. I don't belong to your movement, however I deeply respect your views.

See Judaism

1408:  On 1/17/00, Kenneth asked:  What exactly does "fullness of the gospel" mean?

See Fullness of the Gospel

1408:  On 1/17/00, Tom asked:  I am trying to find out what the difference between Christian church (belief) and Mormon belief (church) is.

See Interfaith Relations home page

(See Question and Answer home page; Question and Answer 35)

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