Mormons are Happy

Mormons are Happy

Reporters often note that the Mormons they interview seem generally happy. Sometimes they find this surprising, since Mormons don’t indulge in some of the things people think they need in order to be happy, including alcohol or immoral movies and activities. What makes Mormons happy?

mormon-black-familyMormons try to stay focused on the eternal scheme of things and this allows them to happily pass over things that have only mortal significance, particularly those that bring only temporary and often fake pleasure. They find their joy in eternal things such as family, service, and faith.

Mormons believe that this life is just a portion of our eternal lives, and probably the smallest portion. It’s a time to prepare ourselves for Heaven. This isn’t just boring hard work and denial. It means finding out who God knows we can become and then becoming it. It involves building our talents, strengthening our self-control, and serving others. Seeing our progress is exciting and fun. Most of us have talents we enjoy and that are perfectly worthy of eternity. Mormons don’t believe we will be sitting on clouds doing nothing for eternity—how dull! Our talents will go with us, so we enjoy working on them and never find it too late to start a new one. (more…)

Study: Utah is Religious

Study: Utah is Religious

A Gallup Poll has found that for the second straight year, Utah is the second most religious state in America, following #1, Mississippi.  Eight out of ten of the most religious states in the Union are in the South, while the most irreligious states are in the northeast.  Oklahoma is tenth on the list and is considered part of the American mid-West.

The poll determined religiosity by asking how often people attend religious services and whether they consider religion very important.  Fifty-eight percent of people in Mississippi attend church nearly every week and consider themselves very religious.   The study was based on interviews with nearly 350,000 people.  [1]

This 2012 Gallup study showed little change from 2011 — within one percentage point.

There are a number of explanations for the substantial differences in religiousness across the states of the union, but analysis included in the recent book God Is Alive and Well shows that the differences are not accounted for by state demographics such as race and ethnicity, or — with the exception of Utah — by the type of religion that predominates in each state. More likely the differences reflect regional cultural traditions. [2]

Mormon Temple UtahSome of the comments on the Deseret News article reporting on the study asked if Utah really wanted to be equated with the states in the deep south of America, where education and economic levels are lower than elsewhere in the country.  Other polls and studies have shown, however, that Mormonism (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) is unlike virtually all other religions in the world, in that the most religious are also the most educated.  Utah is also at the top of the list for volunteerism and general giving.  It is also the one religious state with a very low rate of teen pregnancy and other ills associated with low-income populations.  Gallup’s “State of the States” Series investigates well-being in each of the fifty states. (more…)

About Mormons: Faith and Love

BYU (Brigham Young University) is operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, often mistakenly called the “Mormon Church.”  As part of their undergraduate coursework, BYU students take multiple semesters of spiritually uplifting, stimulating religion classes.

In this series (see below), students enrolled in scripture study classes have shared their thoughts, insights, and reflections on the Book of Mormon in the form of letters to someone they know. We invite you to take a look at their epiphanies and discoveries as they delve into the scriptures.

In publishing these, we fulfill their desire to speak to all of us of the relevance, power and beauty of the Book of Mormon, a second witness of Jesus Christ and complement to the Bible. The Book of Mormon includes the religious history of a group of Israelites who settled in ancient America.  (The names they use are those of prophets who taught the Book of Mormon peoples to look forward to the coming of Christ—Nephi, Lehi, Alma, Helaman, and other unfamiliar names.  We hope those names will become more familiar to you as you read their inspiring words and feel the relevance and divinity of their messages through these letters.) (more…)

About Mormons: Growing Closer to God

BYU (Brigham Young University) is operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, often mistakenly called the “Mormon Church.”  As part of their undergraduate coursework, BYU students take multiple semesters of spiritually uplifting, stimulating religion classes.

In this series (see below), students enrolled in scripture study classes have shared their thoughts, insights, and reflections on the Book of Mormon in the form of letters to someone they know. We invite you to take a look at their epiphanies and discoveries as they delve into the scriptures.

In publishing these, we fulfill their desire to speak to all of us of the relevance, power and beauty of the Book of Mormon, a second witness of Jesus Christ and complement to the Bible. The Book of Mormon includes the religious history of a group of Israelites who settled in ancient America.  (The names they use are those of prophets who taught the Book of Mormon peoples to look forward to the coming of Christ—Nephi, Lehi, Alma, Helaman, and other unfamiliar names.  We hope those names will become more familiar to you as you read their inspiring words and feel the relevance and divinity of their messages through these letters.) (more…)

Can a Mormon Prophet Resign?

Can a Mormon Prophet Resign?

Mormons, or members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, believe that prophets, or leaders of the Church, are chosen and called of God. Prophets and apostles are called to serve the Lord for the rest of their lives, as were the apostles in Christ’s ancient Church. A prophet’s resignation is always possible, because Mormons believe in the divine gift of choice. A more accurate question is: Would a Mormon prophet ever resign?

The first thought that comes to me is the story of the ancient prophet Jonah. Jonah was commanded by God to preach to the Ninevites. Of course, the first things that pop into my head are the bright and cheery songs from the Veggie Tales’ movie. But the reality is a bit more serious. In Jonah 1, God instructs the prophet to go to Nineveh and tell the people to repent or be destroyed. Jonah 1:3 records his response: “But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.” He bought passage on a boat sailing in the opposite direction of Nineveh. A great storm arose, and the mariners on the ship were scared. They cast lots to see which person was causing this evil, and the lot fell on Jonah. He admitted that he had fled from the Lord. To save themselves, the mariners cast Jonah into the sea. The sea stopped raging, and Jonah was swallowed by a great fish. (more…)

How Mormonism Builds Outstanding Teens

How Mormonism Builds Outstanding Teens

A 2005 study by the University of North Carolina found that Mormon teenagers outperformed their peers in other faiths in nearly every category. They were less likely to participate in activities that were dangerous, such as premarital sex or drug use, they did better in school, and they had a better outlook towards the future. They were more likely to stay in the faith their parents belonged to and they were better able to discuss the doctrines of their religion and to express their testimonies of it.

Study and FaithThese results are not surprising when we evaluate the way Mormonism treats teenagers. The Church provides guidelines for parents that help them overcome the challenges of adolescence and also offers many unique support programs for them. The skills and values taught the teenagers provide the best possible outcome for keeping teens safe while teaching them to be contributing members of society.

Mormon is a nickname sometimes applied to members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Mormon teenagers are considered important and contributing members of their religious community and play a critical role in its success. They are given many opportunities to serve others, to lead, to teach, preach, and pray. While they have their own programs, they also play a role in the congregation. (more…)

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