“Mormon? What’s a Mormon?” I have been asked that question many times throughout my life. When I was younger, I could never quite think of what to say, so I’d stumble over the answers: “Well, we don’t drink coffee, tea or alcohol. We don’t smoke. We don’t use foul language. We believe in the Book of Mormon…” I’d like to say that as an adult I’m much better, but I am not sure that’s true. The short answer is that a Mormon is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, sometimes called the Mormon Church because we believe in a book of scripture called the Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon is another testament of Jesus Christ and a companion to the Bible.
The long answer, like most long answers, is more complex. Often people would comment that our faith is very restrictive…a sentiment probably aided and abetted by my statements. The truth is just the opposite. Being a Mormon is all about choices, and learning how and why to make the right ones.
LDS Church President Thomas S. Monson said, “ I am so grateful to a loving Heavenly Father for His gift of agency, or the right to choose. President David O. McKay, ninth President of the Church, said, ‘Next to the bestowal of life itself, the right to direct that life is God’s greatest gift to man’” (President Thomas S. Monson, “The 3 Rs of Choice,” October 2010 General Conference). (more…)