A lot of people seem to think the important things to know about mormons include information about polygamy (a practice that is banned in the church) or things like caffeine or mistakes made by church leaders. Let me try to address these in a constructive manner:
- Polygamy. Mormon’s do NOT practice polygamy. It is illegal and wrong. It was practiced in the bible and at other times, but it is not approved by God today. Here is what the church has to say on this subject: “The family is ordained of God. Marriage between man and woman is essential to His eternal plan. At certain times and for His specific purposes, God, through His prophets, has directed the practice of plural marriage (sometimes called polygamy), which means one man having more than one living wife at the same time. In obedience to direction from God, Latter-day Saints followed this practice for about 50 years during the 1800s but officially ceased the practice of such marriages after the Manifesto was issued by President Woodruff in 1890. Since that time, plural marriage has not been approved by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and any member adopting this practice is subject to losing his or her membership in the Church.”
- Caffeine. Caffeine is not forbidden in the mormon church, plain and simple. We do try to live by a code of health in hopes of having a longer and more productive and happy life. This code of health is called “the word of wisdom”, and it talks about harmful substances like tobacco and excess in many other areas. We also do not drink green and black tea, nor do we drink coffee. We DO drink soda and colas, though many mormons choose not to drink colas with caffeine because they believe, personally, that these substances are not good for their body. Here is a quote from the church website: “The Word of Wisdom is a guide to strengthening the body and mind and keeping them healthy so the spirit of the individual can function without impairment. If we understand the Word of Wisdom properly, we will do all things necessary to avoid weakening the marvelous temple the Lord has given us to house our spirit.”
- Mistakes made by church leaders. In the mormon church we understand better than most the simple fact that everyone is human, and no one is perfect. We understand this because the church leadership is made up of ordinary church members who all pitch in to make the church work. None of these members is specially trained nor are they paid for their service. We all volunteer equally, and help equally. As humans, we all make mistakes. We strive to love and respect our leaders, but in the end we know they are people, just like you and me, who are trying their best to get through life with faith in Jesus Christ, repenting daily of their own sins and shortcomings. My advice is to always look to the Lord as the final author of one’s faith, because you will never be led astray when you follow his Holy Spirit.
Please keep emailing me if you have any questions. I will be happy to answer them in my posts.