Saturday, March 3, 2012

Who Am I?

Image from my Mary Engelbreit Calendar

My mind is a total jumble! I'm revamping my schedule and reinventing myself to add in the equivalent of a full-time job (Relief Society President) to my full-time life. But I'm loving it all!

My one frustration is knowing that members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) all over the world are doing the same thing I'm doing, just because we believe in doing good to all people. Yet we're being lambasted on every side, misrepresented and lied about on the news, in the Republican primary debates, on the radio, everywhere! I wonder why there is so much hatred and prejudice. What are we doing that bothers others so much?

I was excited to find this article in my email box this morning:

Paul Allen is the owner of the Seattle Seahawks, the ones who played
the Pittsburgh Steelers for the Super Bowl a few years ago. He is also
the owner of the Portland Trail Blazers NBA basketball team and is
co-partner with Bill Gates in Microsoft. He wrote this editorial in
the Santa Clarita, California newspaper:

I have heard and seen enough! I have lived in the West all my life. I
have worked around them. They have worked for me and I for them. When
I was young, I dated their daughters. When I got married they came to
my wedding. Now that I have daughters of my own, some of their boys
have dated my daughters. I would be privileged if one of them were to
be my son-in-law.

I'm talking about the Mormons.

They are some of the most honest, hardworking people I have
known. They are spiritual, probably more than most other so-called
religious people I have encountered. They study the Bible and teach
from it as much as any Christian church ever has. They serve their
religion without pay in every conceivable capacity. Not one of their
leaders, teachers, counselors, Bishops or music directors receive one
dime for the hours of labour they put in.

The Mormons have a non-paid ministry - a fact that is not generally
known. I have heard many times from the pulpits of others how evil and
non-Christian they are and that they will not go to heaven. I decided
recently to attend one of their services near my home to see for

What a surprise!

What I heard and saw was just the opposite from what the religious
ministers of the day were telling me. I found a very simple service
with no fanfare. I found a people with a great sense of humour and a
spiritual side. There was no loud music. Just a simple
service, with the members themselves giving the several short sermons.

They urge their youth to be morally clean and live a good life. They
teach the gospel of Christ, as they understand it. The name of their
church is "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints. Does that
sound like a non-Christian church to you? I asked them many questions
about what they teach and why. I got answers that in most cases were
from the New Testament. Their ideas and doctrines did not seem too far
fetched for my understanding. When I read their "Book of Mormon" I was
also very surprised to find just the opposite from what I had been
told I would find.

Then I went to another church's pastor to ask him some of the same
questions about doctrine. To my surprise, when he found out that I was
in some way investigating the Mormons, he became hostile. He referred
them as a non-Christian cult. I received what sounded to me like
evil propaganda against those people. He stated bluntly that they were
not Christian and that they did not fit into the Christian mold. He
also told me that they don't really believe the Bible. He gave me a
pile of anti-Mormon literature. He began to rant that the Mormons were
not telling me the truth about what they stand for. He didn't want to
hear anything good about them. At first I was surprised and then
again, I wasn't. I began to wonder.

I have never known of a cult that supports the Boy Scouts of America.
According to the Boy Scouts, over a third of all the Boy Scout troops
in the United States are Mormon.

What cult do you know of that has a welfare system second to none in
this country? They have farms, canneries and cattle ranches to help
take care of the unfortunate ones who might be down and out and in
need of a little help.
The Mormon Church has donated millions to
welfare causes around the world without a word of credit. They have
donated thousands to help rebuild Baptist churches that were burned a
few years ago. They have donated tons of medical supplies to countries
ravaged by earthquakes.

You never see them on TV begging for money. What cult do you know that
instills in its members to obey the law, pay their taxes, serve in the
military if asked and be a good Christian by living high moral
standards? Did you know that hundreds of thousands of Mormon youth get
up before high school starts in the morning to attend a religious
training class? They have basketball and softball leagues and
supervised youth dances every month.

They are recruited by the FBI, the State Department and every police
department in the country, because they are Trustworthy. They are
taught not to drink nor take drugs. They are in the Secret
Service -
those who protect the President. They serve in high leadership
positions from both parties in Congress and in the US Senate, and have
been governors of several states other than Utah. They serve with
distinction and honour.

If you have Mormons living near, you will probably find them to be
your best friends and neighbours. They are Christians who try to live
what they preach. They are not perfect and they are the first to admit
this. I have known some of them who could not live their religion,
just like many of us. The rhetoric which is spread around against them
is nothing more than evil propaganda founded in untruths. (Others) had
successfully demonized them to the point that the general public has
no idea what they actually believe and teach. If you really want to
know the truth, go see for yourself. You also will be surprised.

When I first moved here some 25 years ago there were five
Mormon wards
in Santa Clarita, Calif. Now there are 15. They must be doing
something right.

"The happiest people don't necessarily have the best of everything.
.... They just make the best of everything."


Grammy T. said...

Oma, I loved this. I think I will steal and use it somewhere. :)

Heffalump said...

If you check snopes the article, while written by a Paul Allen, wasn't written by the famous Paul Allen mentioned. Someone made assumptions.
The article is real, just not written by the person everyone assumes.

mama jo said...


Diane said...

I've read this before, and am thankful to have someone come to our defense. Heffalump is right, though, it's not that same famous Paul Allen. But thank you to this Paul Allen!