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==Brief History==
Mormonism began on April 6, 1830 in Fayette, New York, as an alleged "restoration" of the original Apostolic Church. Its originator, Joseph Smith, Jr., asserted that he had seen two celestial "personages" in 1820 who claimed to be God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ. These "personages" told Smith that all existing churches--including the Orthodox Church--were false, and that he had been chosen to "restore" the one true Church. This restoration included a variety of things, including modern prophets, new revelations of scripture (chief among which was the Book of Mormon), and a calling of a modern group of Twelve Apostles. From the Mormon perspective, the most important elements of this "restoration" was the claimed appearance of a resurrected John the Baptist to convey upon Joseph Smith and his cohort Oliver Cowdery in May of 1829 to "restore" what Mormons call the "Aaronic Priesthood" and the authority to baptize and administer the Mormon version of holy communion and then, according to Mormons, later that same month the resurrected Peter, James, and John, the same as the biblical Apostles, appeared before Smith and Cowdery and conferred upon them the higher or "Melchizedek" Priesthood, which Mormons believe holds the power to do things like confirm membership in the LDS Church, confer the Gift of the Holy Spirit, and give anointings and blessings to the sick so that they may be healed ( perhaps best understood as the Mormon parallel of Holy Unction.) It was also at this time Mormons believe Smith was given the "keys of the kingdom" by the Apostles and ordained as an apostle himself. It is from these "visitations" that Mormons draw their claims of priesthood and divine authority.
Attracting a host of converts, Smith's new religion also garnered intense persecution, necessitating moves in turn to Ohio, Missouri, and finally Illinois, where Joseph Smith was and his brother Hyrum Smith were murdered in 1844. Smith's movement fragmented following his demise, with the majority eventually following Brigham Young , then head of the LDS Church's Council of Twelve Apostles, to Utah. As a matter of course, most Mormons prefer to be called by their official name, the "Latter-day Saints." The usage of the word saint here follows the biblical meaning of the terms as meaning one who has dedicated themselves to God and His service. The term "Latter-day Saint" is often abbreviated as "LDS." The moniker "Mormon" was originally used as a derisive name by non-Mormons and was derived from the "The Book of Mormon."
Plural marriage proved a source of dissension, especially between the Utah Mormons and the smaller Community of Christ, which rejected the doctrine. Polygamy also caused trouble between the LDS church and the U.S. government, until its practice was banned in 1890. Throughout the last century, Mormons fought to project an image of wholesome, family-oriented Christianity, reaping millions of converts and emerging as a formidible presence on the world religous scene.
With the fall of communism, the LDS extended their prosletyzing efforts into traditionally Orthodox countries, including Russia, which passed a law in 1997 designed to hamper their efforts and those of other Western sects.
==Compared To Holy Orthodoxy==
Mormonism as a whole encompasses a mélange of many different religious beliefs, the vast majority of which are contrary to the teachings of the Orthodox Church. Joseph Smith gleaned inspiration from various religious movements of his time, including [[Campbellism|Campbellite]], [[Restorationism|Restorationist]], and [[Universalism|Universalist]]. However, the foundation of Mormon belief is the acceptance of modern prophecy and revelation, and an "open canon" of [[Scripture|Holy Scripture]].
===Mormon Organization===While Joseph Smith taught that any person with a testimony of Christ may have the spiritual gift of prophecy, the LDS Church remains a hierarchical organization. At the head of the organization is the President of the Church who Mormons believe is a [[prophet]], in the mold of the LDS church remains a hierarchial organization with a president-prophetOld Testament prophets, such as Moses. This President is usually assisted by two "Counselorscounselors,"who, who alone possesses along with the President, form what is called the "keysFirst Presidency." to all prophetic power. Most members of the LDS church believe that their current president, Thomas SRussell M. Monson Nelson (as of 20082018), is the sole person authorized to speak definitively for God on the earth today. Below this "First Presidency" are twelve is the "Quorum of the Twelve Apostles," who are also considered "prophets, seers, and revelators," but who do not exercize exercise the prerogatives of leadership held by the presidentPresident of the Church, who has "final say" in all matters. This First Presidency and Quorum of Twelve Apostles constitute the highest leadership bodies in the LDS Church and Mormons believe they hold and exercise the "keys of the kingdom" as Jesus promised Peter. Beneath these apostles are the various "Seventies,Quorums of the Seventy" concerned with heading up Mormon missionary efforts, together with a "Presiding Bishopric" largely relegated and representing the leadership of the church to temporal concernsthe various members throughout the world. These men Along with the First Presidency and the Twelve APostles, the Seventies are referred to as General Authorities as they are considered to have authority over the entire church in general. The "General AuthoritiesPresiding Bishopric" oversees the temporal needs of the LDS churchChurch and manages its massive welfare programs.<ref>All Utah LDS priesthood offices are limited to men; the Community of Christ, on the other hand, ordains both men and women (since 1984).</ref>  A local Mormon congregation, called a "ward" (equivalent to an Orthodox parish), is headed by a "bishop" (equivalent to an Orthodox parish priest). A group of wards occupying a specific geographical area is organized into a "stake" (equivalent to an Orthodox diocese), headed by a "stake president" (equivalent to an Orthodox bishop). The disparity between Mormon and Orthodox usage of "bishop" can cause confusion for the uninitiated!  An important point to understand that all Mormon males above age 12 who attend church regularly and live the church's moral guidelines are ordained into an office in the LDS priesthood. At 12 young men are ordained Deacons and given responsibilities in distributing the bread and water used for holy communion to the congregation (Mormons do not generally use wine.)At 14 young men are ordained as Teachers and have responsibilities to prepare the bread and water for blessing as well as distributing it to the congregation. At 16 young men are ordained as Priests and are given, along with all previous responsibilities, the authority to baptize and bless the holy communion.
A local Generally, at 18, Mormon congregation, called a men are ordained as Elders. While Orthodox Christians use "wardelder" to refer to a holy person who has been given a special gift of spiritual insight and direction (equivalent to an Orthodox parish), but who is headed by not necessarily a "bishop" (equivalent to an Orthodox parish priest, or even a male), Mormons use this term to refer to the first office in the "Melchizedek Priesthood. A group of wards occupying a specific geographical area " Along with all previous responsibilities, it is organized into at this time Mormon young men go on a "stake" (equivalent preaching mission for two years where they try to convert everyone who will listen to their beliefs. Elders also have the authority the the LDS Church to an Orthodox diocese)bestow the gift of the Holy Spirit, headed by oversee church meetings in the absence of a "stake president" (equivalent to an Orthodox bishop). The disparity between Mormon bishopric, anoint and Orthodox usage of "bishop" can cause confusion bless for healing, bless children, bestow the uninitiated!Aaronic and Melchizedek Priesthoods, and ordain men to the offices of deacon, teacher, priest, or elder.
Another source "Patriarch" also has a different usage for Mormons than for Orthodox Christians. Instead of confusion is referring to the Mormon use chiefest of bishops a sit does among the word "Elder." While Orthodox Christians use , the term "Elderpatriarch" to refer to a holy person who has been given a special gift of spiritual insight and direction (but who is not necessarily a priest, or even a male), used by Mormons use this term to refer to a specific describe an office in the "Melchizedek Priesthood," higher Mormon priesthood mostly concerned with the higher giving of their two "priesthoodsspecial " (the lesser patriarchal blessings"priesthood" is referred to as the "Aaronic Priesthood")church members. "Elder" is Mormons believe that patriarchal blessings declares a person’s lineage in the lowest office in this higher priesthood, house of Israel and is generally held by all male members over contains personal counsel from the age Lord to that person, something of eighteen deemed "worthy" a personal revelation from God through the Mormon patriarch. As Mormons believe their patriarchs declares the will of it (God, if not His exact words, in these blessings they equate patriarchs with the vast majority)biblical term evangelist.
"Patriarch" also has a different usage for Mormons than for Orthodox; instead of referring to the chiefest of Orthodox bishops, this term is used to describe an office in the higher Mormon priesthood mostly concerned with the giving of special "patriarchial blessings" to church members.
===The "Doctrine of Eternal Progression"===
A major pillar of Mormon belief is their concept of [[theosis|deification]], which they refer to as the "Doctrine of Eternal Progression." In opposition to the Trinitarian dogmas of the [[First Ecumenical Council|First]] and [[Second Ecumenical Council|Second]] [[Ecumenical Council|Ecumenical Councils]], Mormons believe that [[God]] the Father, whom they refer to as by the Old Testament Hebrew term "Elohim"<ref>LDS Bible Dictionary, Entry "God," at This doctrine, incidentally, is vehemently rejected by the Community of Christ and most smaller Mormon sects.</ref> or (which, translated into English literally, means "Heavenly gods") as a way to refer to God the Fatherseparately form His Son," was originally a flesh-and-blood human beingJehovah/Yahweh, who was spiritually Mormons believe incarnated on Earth as Jesus Christ. Mormons also refer to God the Father as "begottenHeavenly Father" by another "god" (as Mormons believe that He is literally the father of the human spirit. Mormons believe that all human beings are literal spirit children of God and his "godess" wife) and then physically lived with Him in Heaven before being born on another planet (not this Earth). (It should be noted that this LDS doctrine of per-existence of spirits, by which we all are alleged to have existed "Elohimspiritually" lived a normal human lifein heaven prior to our birth on this earth, was specifically condemned by the [[Fifth Ecumenical Council]].) Thus, Mormons believe the difference between is not one of kind -Created v. Uncreated- but of degree -Fallen v. Perfect and Eternal. Because of this Mormons believe that through the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ all people can be made perfect and be made like God by embracing his world's version of MormonismGod, he "progressed" to i.e. they can become the "god" he is todaygods.<ref>Numerous quotes from Mormon leaders on this topic, past and present, may be read at http</. See also the ref> This is laid out in one of Joseph Smith''Mormonwiki'' article on s "Eternal progressionrevelations" at httpknown as Doctrine and Covenants section 132, verse 20 which says://www"Then shall they be gods, because they have no end; therefore shall they be from everlasting to everlasting, because they continue; then shall they be above all, because all things are subject unto them.mormonwikiThen shall they be gods, because they have all power, and the angels are subject unto</ref>"
Having attained to "godhoodFor a casual observer," this "Elohim" and his wife were enabled to create and populate their own universe--namely, ours--with spiritual offspring who, by coming may seem similar to earth and taking on human flesh, embracing and fully living the Mormon religion, and "enduring to the end," could themselves acquire "godhood," where they in turn could begin this process anew. It should be noted that this LDS doctrine Church's teaching of "pre-existence" of spirits, by which we all are alleged to have existed "spiritually" in heaven prior to our birth on this earth, was specifically condemned by the [[Fifth Ecumenical Counciltheosis]]., but this is most emphatically ''not'' so:
For :'''First''', there is a casual observerdefinite distinction in the Church between God and mankind, between the Creator and His Creation. God is eternal, this may seem similar and existed for eternity prior to (and entirely separate from) His creation (which, unlike its Creator, is ''not'' eternal), until the Church's teaching incarnation of the pre-eternal Word of God, the Second Person of the [[theosisHoly Trinity|Most Holy Trinity]], as Our Lord [[Jesus Christ]]. This was a unique union between God and His creation, which never existed before. Mormonism, on the other hand, teaches that man and God are of the same "race" and men have the potential not just to achieve complete union with God but this to become gods as He is now. :'''Second''', the Orthodox Church clearly teaches that the Most Holy Trinity has ''always'' existed precisely as one God: "the Trinity, One in Essence, and Undivided." Mormonism, on the other hand, teaches that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are one in purpose, power, and perfection but most emphatically are ''not'' soone in essence or hypostasis (as the Orthodox Church teaches). They are three completely individual beings and "gods," say the Mormons, and not "one" in substance. Mormons thus reject the Trinity. : '''Third''', Theosis is a unification between God and mankind, not the creation of an entirely separate deity (or deities).
:Mormonism'''First''', there is a definite distinction in the Church between God and mankind, between the Creator and His Creation. God is eternal, and existed for eternity prior to (and entirely separate from) His creation (which, unlike its Creator, is ''not'' eternal), until the incarnation of the pre-eternal Word of God, the Second Person of the s designation by Orthodoxy as being "[[Holy Trinityheretic|Most Holy Trinityheretical]], as Our Lord "--instead of "[[Jesus Christheterodox]]. This was a unique union between God and His creation, which never existed before. Mormonism, on the other hand, teaches that only matter and intelligence are truly eternal (not God), and that ''all'' of their "gods" essentially "evolved" in the same fashion, from physical matter.:'''Second''', as is the Orthodox Church clearly teaches that case with the Most Holy Trinity has ''always'' existed precisely as one God: "the Trinity, One in Essence, Roman Catholic and Undivided." Mormonism, most major Protestant faiths--stems primarily from their spurious doctrines on the other hand, teaches that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are one in "purpose" only, Trinity and most emphatically ''not'' one in essence or hypostasis (as the Orthodox Church teaches). They are three "gods," say the Mormons, and not "one" in anything except a common purpose and mindset. Furthermore, say they, there are potentially billions nature of "gods" beyond the three they acknowledge as belonging to this world. All of this is diametrically opposed to Orthodox Christian teaching.:'''Third''', Theosis is a unification between God and mankind, not the creation of an entirely separate deity (or dieties)together with various other specious beliefs.
MormonismMormons have a very difficult time understanding why Orthodox and other Christians deny that they are Christian. The simplest answer to this question is that the Mormon god is simply ''not''s designation by Orthodoxy as being "[[heretic|heretical]]"God--instead of "[[heterodox]]," as is at least not the case with God worshiped by Orthodox Christians (and other Trinitarians). This does not mean that the Roman Catholic and most major Protestant faiths--stems primarily Mormons are necessarily immoral or wicked people, simply that they worship a god different from their spurious doctrines on the Holy God worshiped in the Christian Trinity and the nature of God, together with various other specious beliefs.
===Attaining to "Godhood"===
While Mormonism focuses on salvation through the atonement of Jesus Christ, their concept of ''exaltation'' goes far beyond this. All of mankind, say the Mormons, will be saved from death through the [[resurrection]] of Christ; but it is only those whom God judges as obedient and faithful, and who receive specific saving ordinances (which will be offered to every person that has ever lived), who will be exalted to the highest of the three "degrees of glory" which comprise the Mormon heaven. Mormons, building on Paul's explication that there are three types of resurrection -one with a glory like the Sun, another with a glory like the Moon, and another a glory like the Stars- combined with the teachings of Joseph Smith have developed a Heaven with multiple glories and rewards. Only those exalted to the greatest or "Celestial glory" will become "gods." Those in the lower two degrees, referred to in order of glory as the "Terrestrial" and "Telestial" glories respectively in Doctrine & Covenants Section 76 will enjoy a blessed and happy state but will still be damned as their spiritual progression will be frozen and they will never have the chance to move to a higher existence.
While Mormonism claims To attain to focus on salvation through the atonement "Celestial glory," one must be baptized as a Mormon by "true authority" (meaning a member of Jesus Christ, their concept of ''exaltation'' goes far beyond this. All of mankind, say church ordained to the MormonsLDS priesthood), will be saved from death through "confirmed" by the [[resurrection]] of Christ; but it is only those whom God judges as obedient and faithfulsame, and who receive specific saving certain sacred ordinances (which will be offered to every person that has ever lived), who will can only be exalted had within a Mormon temple. Orthodox Christians often tend to use the highest of the three term "degrees of glorytemple" which comprise the Mormon heavento refer to any Orthodox Church building. Only those exalted Mormons, hearkening back more directly to this "Celestial glory" will become "gods." Those ancient biblical concepts of temples as places where God Himself could dwell directly and in which certain sacred ceremonies took place that members not of the lower two degrees,<ref>These are referred faith were not allowed to take part in have specific structures specially dedicated solely as temples. The regular Mormon meetinghouses are generally called "Terrestrialchapels" and (where Mormon congregations meet) or "Telestialstake centers," respectively, (larger chapels designed for large stake wide church meetings- much as if all the congregations in LDS ''Doctrine & Covenants'' Section 76.</ref> while enjoying a blessed diocese met together in one place) and happy stateunlike their temples, will still be limited in their "progression" and will never have are open to the chance to move to a higher existencepublic.
To attain to "Celestial gloryWithin these temple structures," one must be baptized as a Mormon by "true authority" Mormons practice (meaning a regularly-ordained member for themselves, or on behalf of their churchothers who have died), "confirmed" by the same, and receive certain "sacred" or "higher" ordinances that can only be had within a Mormon temple. While Orthodox Christians often tend to use the term "temple" to refer to any Orthodox Church building, Mormons use it only for specific structures specially dedicated as such.<ref>The regular Mormon meetinghouses are generally called "chapels" or "stake centers," and unlike their temples, are generally open to the public.</ref> rituals:
Within these structures, Mormons practice (for themselves, or on behalf of others) certain esoteric rituals: :'''Baptism for the Dead''', where living proxies act are baptized on behalf of deceased persons which Mormons believes gives those who are then "baptized" never had the chance to accept baptism into their church in this life the opportunity to do so though the person could still conceivably accept or reject the LDS churchbaptism performed on their behalf; names are obtained from geneological genealogical research, for which the Mormons are world-famous. This practice was rejected by the Council of Hippo and the Third Council of Carthage, and St. [[John Chrysostom]] associated it with the heretical [[Marcionism|Marcionites]]. St. [[Clement of Alexandria]] indicated that Baptism for the Dead was a doctrine also particular to the [[Gnostics]].:'''The so-called "Endowment'''," where initiates are taught the "fullness" of Mormon doctrine on such subjects as the "plurality of Gods," the Mormon version of creation, and the process by which one may "progress to godhood." Additionally, participants take a solemn oath never to reveal anything that goes on in the temple, as well as oaths to faithfully abide by all Mormon teachings. This ritual is essentially a "contract" between the Mormon "god" and his adherents, by which they promise to obey his laws and earthly leadership, and he in turn promises to advance them to "godhood" upon their resurrection. Many elements of this rite were stolen from the heretical [[Freemasonry|Freemasons]], and Joseph Smith (who had been a Master Mason himself) was expelled from that fraternity as a result.:'''Marriage for Eternity''', where participants, upon receiving their "Endowment," are married "for time and all eternity." This is seen as an indespensible requirement for "godhood."<ref>LDS ''Doctrine & Covenants'', Section 131. See</ref> The Orthodox Church has traditionally rejected this concept.
:'''The "Endowment'''," where initiates go through a ritual presentation of the Creation of the Earth and the temptation and Fall of Adam and Eve as well as the preaching of the Gospel to Adam. As part of the ceremony, Mormons learn certain signs and tokens that they promise to never reveal and covenant to live the Law of Chastity, consecrate all their lives and possessions to God and His kingdom, to serve Jesus Christ, and avoid impure thoughts and actions. Some elements of this rite are similar to practices of the [[Freemasonry|Freemasons]], and Joseph Smith and many early Mormon hellleaders were themselves Masons. That said, by the waysimilarities are few and the differences are very important to understanding the different rituals- that is Masonic ritual and the Mormon Endowment. "<ref> Similarities and differences can be explored here.</ref>  :'''Eternal Marriage''', Mormons believe an essential part of being exalted is being married "for time and all eternity" within Mormon temples. This ceremony, often called a "sealing, " is limited believed to those few who have apostasized from join or "seal" couples together on Earth so that they will be joined or "sealed" together as husbands and wives, parents and children, in Heaven. For Mormons, not only does the family explicitly continue into eternity but it is also the basis for deification. In order to become a "god" Mormons believed they must be married or sealed within a Mormon religiontemple. Hell, broken in Mormonism, is generally temporary. Those who reject a testimony of Jesus Christ suffer the punishment for their oath evils and sins in Hell. Ultimately they pay the punishment for their sins and are released form Hell but because they rejected Christ they are damned, never able to be exalted, and only gain the lowest, or Telestial glory, in Heaven. Only Sons of secrecy about Perdition are damned to Hell eternally. In Mormonism, the Temple ritualsonly way to become a Son of Perdition is to have an absolute knowledge of God, to reject Him, committed to commit murder after becoming a Mormon, or and to seek to destroy His church and His work. The classic examples of this for Mormons are guilty Satan, who as an angel in Heaven knew of God's actual reality and rebelled, seeking to dominate and destroy the souls of other very serious offenses--together with men and Cain, who under the devil influence of Satan, knowingly rejected God (who Cain knew was a reality through revelatory communication)and murdered his fallen angelsbrother Abel. In Mormonism, those condemned to an eternity in Hell are incredibly few.
===Alleged "brotherhood" of Christ and Satan===
In the ''Pearl of Great Price''Mormonism, "Book all people are children of Moses" 4:1-4 and "Book of Abraham" 3:27God. This includes Jehovah, Mormonism's god explains that in the "preexistencepre-mortal Jesus Christ," he asked for a volunteer to serve as who Mormons believe is the savior Firstborn spirit child of humankind. Two of his "spirit-sonsGod," Jesus and Lucifer, obligedas well as all humans who have ever lived. Lucifer wanted to compel In Mormonism, all humans to follow people are spiritual brothers and sisters. Nor do Mormons see angels as a separate class of being, but simply as people given tasks by God, while Jesus insisted (see section below on the right of each person to choose angels for themselvesmore information. When "Elohim" chose Jesus over Lucifer) The result of this doctrine is the belief that all people, say the Mormonsincluding all humans, Lucifer rebelled are spiritual brothers and was cast out sisters of heaven with his followers. They were deprived of all chance to receive a fleshly body, Jesus and also that Jesus and thus barred from any chance at "godhoodLucifer are also brothers."
The June 1986 ''Ensign'', official magazine of the LDS Church, affirmed the teaching that Christ and Satan are, indeed, seen as "spirit brothers" in LDS theology--albeit diametrically opposed "brothers."<ref>Read the entire article at http</ref>
All of these teachings, needless to say, are emphatically rejected by the Orthodox Church.
===The Mormon Concept of Angels===
In contrast to Orthodoxy, which views angels (whether righteous or fallen) as a separate class of beings created by God prior to--and separate from--humanity, Mormonism sees angels as being either pre-existent spirits of human beings not yet physically born, or the spirits of departed righteous men, or righteous men who have been resurrected already. Mormons believe the references in the Bible to angels having wings are symbolic, not literal. ==="righteousThe Great [[Apostasy]]" menand Apostolic Succession===Like many Restorationist heresies, Mormons believe that the [[Orthodox Church|Church]] entered an age of error and apostasy by the end of the first century AD. In doing so, they say, it lost all right to perform sacraments, consecrate priests, such as characters or otherwise act in God's name. And from that moment until 1830, say the Mormons, there was no true Church anywhere on the earth. The Orthodox Church, which traces her unbroken succession to the Bible Apostles themselves and alone teaches the fullness of their doctrine, is ''Book ergo'' in apostasy (with all other non-LDS churches) according to the Mormons.  Mormons point to New Testament scriptures<ref>I Timothy 4:1, II Timothy 3:1-5, Acts 20:28-31, among others.</ref> that they assert as speaking of a complete apostasy of the entire Church, as proof of their claims. While Orthodox Christians would agree that these passages did indeed speak of apostates to come--such as [[Arius]], [[Nestorius]] and [[Paul of Samosata]], for instance--they emphatically reject the Mormoninterpretation (advanced to varying degrees by nearly all Protestants) that the entire Apostolic Church would fall into heresy.'' In St. Matthew 16:18, our Lord clearly states that the "Moroni,gates of Hades shall not prevail" against the Church He had founded--a Church which the alleged Mormons agree existed, but which they claim to have been subsequently "angellost." who showed While the Orthodox interpret this scripture as saying the church would never fall into complete apostasy, Mormons note that Hades is the golden plates land of the dead, not Hell, and argue that death did not ultimately triumph over the church as they believe it was restored by resurrected personages, i.e. people who had conquered death. Others argue that the Lord's words apply more to Peter'Book s divinely granted witness that Jesus was the Christ and not the actual church. ===Gethsamene and Golgotha===Mormons of the mainline church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, generally use the Holy [[Cross]] as a symbol. The Mormon'' church teaches that the atonement of Christ took place in three stages. Mormons believe the Atonement of Christ began first in the Garden of Gethsemane, where the weight of the sins of humanity brought, "suffering [and] caused myself, even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to Joseph Smith suffer both body and spirit." (see belowDoctrine and Covenants 19:18)The second stage of the Atonement of Christ was His crucifixion upon the cross, where Mormon Apostle Bruce R. McConkie taught "while he was supposed hanging on the cross for another three hours, from noon to have 3:00 P.M., all the infinite agonies and merciless pains of Gethsemane recurred. And, finally, when the atoning agonies had taken their toll—when the victory had been an ancient American prophet who figures prominently won, when the Son of God had fulfilled the will of his Father in all 'things—then he said, “It is finished' (John 19:30), and he voluntarily gave up the ghost." Mormons believe the third stage of the Atonement took place on the third day after His death when He was resurrected form the final portions dead, thus ensuring to all the promise of that bookresurrection.
While As for the Orthodox Church traditionally admonishes her children to mistrust ''any'' spiritual manifestations they might see (even wearing of the saints cross, Mormons have sometimes been deceived by demons, such as Stan interesting history with the symbol. [[Nikita In the Venerable]] early history of Novgorodthe LDS Church in the 1830s up through the early 20th century, for instance!), Joseph Smith offered his followers a novel test by which he claimed to be able to discern true angels of God from demonsthe cross appears in many places. Historian Michael G. This task, which involved asking to shake Reed found the "angelcross all over early Mormondom. It appeared as jewelry on Mormon Prophet Brigham Young's wives and daughters. It appeared in floral arrangements in funerals. It appeared as tie tacks on men's" hand (Smith said one would not feel the "angelties and watch fobs on men's" handvests. It appeared on cattle as the official LDS Church brand. Crosses were on church windows, if it were a demon)attic vents, may be found in LDS ''Doctrine stained-glass windows and Covenants'' Section 129pulpits.<ref>http://enThey were on gravestones and</ref> HoweverEven two temples, the Hawaiian and the Cardston, Alberta, Canada Temple were described in a 1923 general conference as being built in the life shape of Sta cross. [[Martin of Tours]] illustrates that According to Reed it wasn't until the demons are quite capable of affecting human sensory perceptionsmid--including 20th century, in the late 1950s and early 1960s, that Mormons began to stop using the human sense of touch--contrary cross as a way to Joseph Smith's assertionseparate themselves from the Roman Catholic Church.<ref>See St. Martin's story at httphttps://celticchristianitywww.deseretnews.orgcom/article/COCQ705328913/COCM200111.html, or in Chapter Five of Rose, Fr. Seraphim, ''Orthodoxy Mormons-and -the Religion of the Future'', St. Herman of Alaska Press, 1980-cross.html</ref>
==="The Great [[Apostasy]]" and Apostolic Succession===Like many Restorationist heresiesSince the 1960s, Mormons believe that Mormon ambivalence to the [[Orthodox Church|Church]] entered an age cross as a symbol has grown and is more of opprobrium several years after its foundinga cultural phenomena than a doctrinal one.<ref>Some Mormon leaders have denounced the wearing or display of the Cross by Mormons tend to follow . Most focus more on the Western error that posits Roman Catholicismsymbolic meaning of "taking up our own cross" in imitating of Christ. In this respect, rather than Eastern Orthodoxy, as the most ancient of contemporary Christian faithsGregory A. Many are suprised to learn that Orthodoxy even exists! HoweverSchwitzer, learning a member of Orthodoxy's existence the Seventy and claims does not alter their beliefs in the slightest.</ref> In doing soan LDS General Authority, say theytaught: "We may wonder why we Latter-day Saints don’t place a cross on our churches or wear a cross to show that we are Christians, thereby making it lost all right easier for others to perform sacraments, consecrate priests, or otherwise act identify in God's namewhom we believe. And from that moment until 1830, say Is the Mormons, there was no true Church anywhere cross important to our faith? The answer is an unequivocal yes! The Redeemer’s suffering on the earth. While Mormons offer no specific date cross is vitally important to us and is an inseparable part of the Atonement, through which He suffered and died for this alleged catastrophe, they tend our sins and thereby provided us with a clear path to believe salvation and exaltation. The Savior was clear when He stated that in following Him we should take upon ourselves a cross—not the Roman cross that it had occurred by was the era instrument of St. [[Constantine death but our own cross, whereby we present a sacrifice to the Great]] and the [[First Ecumenical Council]] in ALord of our own heart to be obedient to His commandments.D" <ref>https://www. 325lds. The Orthodox Church, which traces her unbroken succession to org/ensign/2011/07/the Apostles themselves and alone teaches the fullness -meaning-of their doctrine, is ''ergo'' in apostasy (with all other non-LDS churches) according to the -cross-for-latter-day-saints?lang=eng</ref> Mormon Prophet Gordon B. Hinckley taught this regarding how Mormons. view the cross:
Mormons point to New Testament scriptures<ref>I Timothy 4:1, II Timothy 3:1-5, Acts 20:28-31, among others.</ref> that they assert as speaking of a complete apostasy "Following the renovation of the entire ChurchMesa Arizona Temple some years ago, as proof clergy of their claims. While Orthodox Christians would agree that these passages did indeed speak of apostates other religions were invited to come--such as [[Arius]], [[Nestorius]] and [[Paul tour it on the first day of Samosata]], for instance--they emphatically reject the Mormon interpretation (advanced open house period. Hundreds responded. In speaking to varying degrees by nearly all Protestants) that the entire Apostolic Church them, I said we would fall into heresybe pleased to answer any queries they might have. In StAmong these was one from a Protestant minister. Matthew 16Said he:18“I’ve been all through this building, our Lord clearly states that this temple which carries on its face the "gates name of hell shall not prevail" against the Church He had founded--a Church which the Mormons agree existedJesus Christ, but which they claim to nowhere have been subsequently "lost"I seen any representation of the cross, in violation the symbol of Christianity. I have noted your buildings elsewhere and likewise find an absence of our Lord's wordsthe cross.Why is this when you say you believe in Jesus Christ?”
Mormons believe ardently in I responded: “I do not wish to give offense to any of my Christian colleagues who use the necessity cross on the steeples of Apostolic Succession, which they refer to as "Priesthood succession" or "Priesthood lineage." However, since they recognize no valid church between the alleged "Great Apostasy" their cathedrals and at the establishment altars of their own in 1830chapels, they trace ''who wear it on their'' succession to one of four "exalted beingsvestments,"<ref>The Mormons claim these beings to have been Stand imprint it on their books and other literature. John But for us, the Baptist, and cross is the symbol of the Holy Apostles SS Peterdying Christ, James and John.</ref> who purportedly visited Joseph Smith on two separate occasions in while our message is a declaration of the 1820's, just prior to their church's foundingLiving Christ.
===Gethsamene and Golgotha===Utah Mormons generally reject all usage of the Holy [[Cross]] as a Christian symbol. The Mormon church teaches that the atonement of Christ took place, He then asked: “If you do not primarily on use the Crosscross, but rather in the Garden of Gethsamene the night before His crucifixion. The LDS Bible Dictionary entry for "Atonement" speaks of the shedding of Our Lord's blood as having taken place ''there''; His subsequent death on the Cross the following day what is relegated to a seemingly secondary place. There is no entry for "Cross" in the LDS Bible Dictionary, and its cursory article on "crucifixion" makes no mention whatsoever of this salvific event having any role in His Atonement. The ''Mormonwiki'' article on "Atonement of Jesus Christ" contains a section entitled "Gethsamene and Golgotha," which emphasizes the time our Lord spent in the Garden of Gethsamene, alleging that it was ''here'' that the genuine "shedding symbol of blood" took place to effect our salvation.your religion?”
Many Mormon leaders have denounced I replied that the wearing or display lives of our people must become the Cross by Mormons. Some most meaningful expression of their statements are contained our faith and, in an essay entitled "Why Are There No Crosses on Mormon Churches and Temples?fact, therefore, the symbol of our worship."<ref>httphttps://memberswww.tripodlds.comorg/~Aariusensign/nocross.htm.2005/04/the-symbol-of-our-faith?lang=eng</ref>
On the other hand, the late Fr. [[Michael Pomazansky]], author of ''Orthodox Dogmatic Theology'', shows the Orthodox teaching on the Cross as both the ''path'', ''power'' and ''banner'' of the Church. In his essay "The Cross of Christ" (printed in this same book), he gives the Orthodox teaching on the vital importance of our Lord's Cross as the indispensible weapon, not merely in the general victory against Satan and his angels won at Calvary, but equally in our own individual struggles for salvation.<ref>Pomazansky, Protopresbyter Michael, ''Orthodox Dogmatic Theology: A Concise Exposition''; [[St. Herman of Alaska Brotherhood]], 1997, pp. 326-30.</ref>
===Original Sin and Infant Baptism===
Similar Mormons teach that there is no need to baptize children because, thanks to the ancient heresy Atonement of [[Pelagianism|Pelagius]]Christ, Mormons teach they are saved from the spiritual consequences of the Fall of Adam until they become old enough to become accountable before God for understanding that all human beings their acts are born completely right or wrong. Mormon Apostle Bruce R. McConkie taught: "Our revelation says: 'Every spirit of man was innocent; in the beginning'—meaning that spirits started out in a state of purity and innocence in preexistence—'and they further assert God having redeemed man from the fall, men became again, in their infant state, innocent before God' (D&C 93:38)—meaning that all children start out their mortal probation in purity and innocence because of the atonement. Our revelations also say, 'The Son of God hath atoned for original guilt, wherein the sins of the parents cannot be answered upon the heads of the children, for they are incapable whole from the foundation of the world.' (Moses 6:54.) ...They [babies] are saved through the atonement and because they are free from sin until . They come from God in purity; no sin or taint attaches to them in this life; and they return in purity to their Maker. Accountable persons must become pure through repentance and baptism and obedience. Those who are not accountable for sins never fall spiritually and need not be redeemed from a spiritual fall which they reach never experienced. Hence the age expression that little children are alive in Christ. “Little children are redeemed from the foundation of eight yearsthe world through mine Only Begotten,” the Lord says. (D&C 29:46.)"<ref>See http</ref> Mormons believe that babies, like all people, are born mortal and imperfect and, if they grow up, will inevitably sin. But they are not born already sinful or tainted by sin. They are born innocent in Mormon teaching.  The second Mormon "Article of Faith" (contained in the ''Pearl of Great Price'') teaches: "We believe that men will be punished for their own sins, and not for Adam's transgression."<ref></ref> Accordingly, infant baptism is vehemently rejected by the Mormon church.Referencing the Book of Mormon, McConkie taught: "Few false doctrines have ever deserved and received such a vigorous and forceful denunciation as that heaped upon infant baptism by the prophet Mormon. When that inspired author inquired of the Lord concerning the baptism of little children, he was told: “Listen to the words of Christ, your Redeemer, your Lord and your God. Behold, I came into the world not to call the righteous but sinners to repentance; the whole need no physician, but they that are sick; wherefore, little children are whole, for they are not capable of committing sin; wherefore the curse of Adam is taken from them in me, that it hath no power over them.”  Thereupon Mormon, speaking by the power of the Holy Ghost, taught that “it is solemn mockery” to baptize little children; that they “are alive in Christ from the foundation of the world”; that it is awful wickedness to deny the pure mercies of Christ to them; that such a belief sets at naught the power of Christ’s redemption; that those who believe such a false concept are “in the bonds of iniquity” and if cut off while in the thought shall be thrust down to hell; and that those who humble themselves and repent and are baptized shall “be saved with their little children.” (Moro. 8:8–25.)" <ref></ref> Speaking about what would happen if babies died before being baptized, McConkie taught: "Are all little children saved automatically in the celestial kingdom? To this question the answer is a thunderous ''yes'', which echoes and re-echoes from one end of heaven to the other. Jesus taught it to his disciples. Mormon said it over and over again. Many of the prophets have spoken about it, and it is implicit in the whole plan of salvation. If it were not so the redemption would not be infinite in its application. And so, as we would expect, Joseph Smith’s Vision of the Celestial Kingdom contains this statement: 'And I also beheld that all children who die before they arrive at the years of accountability are saved in the celestial kingdom of heaven.' (D&C 137:10)"<ref></ref>
In contrast, Orthodoxy teaches (unlike Roman Catholics and most Protestants) that while only [[Adam]] and [[Eve]] bear the ''guilt'' for their sin in the [[Garden of Eden]], they transmitted the ''consequences'' of that sin to their progeny. St. [[Anastasius the Sinaite]] wrote: "We became the inheritors of the curse in Adam. We were not punished as if we had disobeyed that divine commandment along with Adam; but because Adam became mortal, he transmitted sin to his posterity. We became mortal since we were born from a mortal."<ref>St. Anastasius the Sinaite, 19. Vide I.N. Karmirh, SUNOYIS THS DOGMATKHS THS ORQODOXOU EKKLHSIAS, s. 38. Quoted from Kalomiros, Dr. Alexandre, ''The River of Fire'', ch. IV, found at</ref> Thus, in keeping with Holy Scripture and Apostolic Tradition, the Orthodox Church baptizes infants by triple immersion (as she does with adult converts, as well)--not to cleanse them of "[[original sin]]," but rather to give them the grace this holy [[sacrament]] imparts, together with access to the [[Eucharist|Holy Eucharist]] and all of the other means of grace she offers.<ref>Pomazansky, pp. 268-69.</ref>
===Miracles and Martyrs===
Mormons assert that one proof of their claims is the miracles claimed by members of their sect--and the comparative absence of these in other Christian denominations. This was emphasized during the early years of Mormonism, where their assertions of the "restoration" of the "gifts of the Spirit" contrasted sharply with Campbellite and other Protestants' assertions that such miracles had entirely ceased among Christians. Mormons insist that this cessation of such "gifts" comprises proof of their alleged "Great Apostasy" of the entire Church (see above). It is important to note that Mormons believe all members of Christ's church should be miracle workers. Mormon men often give blessings of healing and revelatory guidance wherein they believe the sicknesses and illnesses of those being blessed are healed and God gives them direction. Mormonism doesn't discount miracles in other churches. Rather, Mormons claim that anytime someone has true faith in Jesus Christ they could be a conduit through which He works to do miracles. But Mormons note that this seems to be a rare exception instead of a general rule, arguing that in churches where the true gifts of the Spirit are found everyone should be a miracle worker, at the very least those with priesthood authority. And Mormons claim that their church is just such a church where miracles happen commonly and are performed widely by the general body of the church across the world.
Orthodoxy, however, offers can offer an unbroken twenty-century history of [[wonderworker|wonderworkers]], miracles and gifts far surpassing anything the Mormons can adduce. The twentieth century alone saw SS [[Nectarios of Aegina]], [[John Maximovitch]] of San Francisco and [[John of Kronstadt]], among others; each preceding century offers additional proof that the true "gifts of the Holy Spirit" ''never'' ceased in the one, true (Orthodox) Church of Christ.
Mormonism believes in the concept of [[martyr|martyrdom]], offering various persons who have been murdered for professing the LDS religion since its inception. While it does not pray to these people, as Orthodox do to their martyrs and [[saint|saints]], it does venerate their memory and uphold them as examples to other Mormons. The LDS church offers its founder, Joseph Smith, Jr., and his brother Hyrum Smith as its chief "martyrmartyrs," as he was they were murdered by an anti-Mormon mob in Carthage, Illinois, on June 27, 1844. However, whereas a martyr has always been understood by Orthodox Christians as one who dies voluntarily for the Faith without resisting his persecutors in any way (and indeed, while praying for and forgiving them), Joseph Smith did not die in this fashion. Rather, Smith used a six-shot pistol against his attackers, wounding three of them before being killed himself.<ref>''History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints'', Vol. 7, p. 100, 102 & 103.</ref>
While the murder of Smith was indeed a deplorable and henious act, it cannot be described as true "martyrdom" by Orthodox standards--not only because of Smith's resistance to his killers, but equally because he died for a false religion. "The martyrdom of heretics is suicide," say the Holy Fathers.<ref></ref>
In contrast, Orthodoxy offers numerous genuine martyrs throughout her 2,000 year history, including nearly twenty-million who died during the twentieth century under Communist persecution. This list extends from the Holy Apostles themselves and their immediate disciples, right up to the present day. Fr. [[Alexander Men]], for instance, was martyred in Semkhoz, Russia in 1990, and Priestmonk [[Nestor (Savchuk)|Nestor Savchuk]] of Zharky, Russia was martyred there in 1993. Other Orthodox Christians have been martyred in the Serbian provice of Kosovo, within the past decade.<ref></ref><ref></ref>
In Mormonism, you do not have to be Mormon to be a martyr for the cause of Christ. Mormons look at all who die for their religion and for Jesus in all the varying forms of Christianity as martyrs. ==Distinctive Mormon "Scriptures"==
===The Book of Mormon===
In 1823 Smith claimed to have been visited by an [[angel]] named Moroni, who told him of a chronicle of ancient history supposedly engraved in "Reformed Egyptian" on tablets of gold, and buried in a hill near Manchester, New York. Smith allegedly obtained these plates in 1827 and translated them into English via the use of two seer-stones which he called the "Urim and Thummim." These stones should not be confused with the [[Old Testament]] Urim and Thummim (the stones on the High Priest’s breastplate used to relay messages from God to the Israelites), though . Mormons sometimes try believe they are the same type of holy instruments but that the one Joseph Smith claimed to connect have was not the one mentioned in the twoBible.
This translation became ''The Book of Mormon'', which is revered as "Another Testament of Jesus Christ" by Mormons. The monikers referring to Smith's church as "the Mormon Church" and its members as "Mormons" are derivations from''The Book of Mormon.'' This book purports to be a religious and secular history of the ancient inhabitants of the Americas--called Nephites, Lamanites, Mulekites, and Jaredites--from about 2200 B.C. to A.D. 421. It claims that at least some Native Americans are descended from groups of Near Eastern peoples (mostly [[Judaism|Jews]]) who immigrated during pivotal periods in Israel’s history.
The ''Book of Mormon'' claims that many of these people were openly-practicing [[Christian|Christians]], ''before'' the birth of Christ, with a functioning church organization that mirrored that later taught by Joseph Smith. According to Smith's text, the godly "Nephites" openly administered baptisms, "confirmations" and the Holy Eucharist eons ''before'' the coming of the Savior. The book even claims that our Lord came to visit these peoples Himself after His [[Ascension]]--after raining down several days of death and destruction on the evildoers among them. About four-hundred years after this alleged event, the "Nephites" were destroyed by the wicked "Lamanites," who became among the primary ancestors of the Native American peoples.
This points to a Mormon perspective on the sacrifice of the Savior that is fairly unique. Mormons believe that the sacrifice is as retroactive as it is proactive, meaning that people could be saved by Christ's Atonement before Christ had chronologically sacrificed Himself to atone for the sins of mankind. Mormons believe ancient biblical figures such as Adam, Abraham, and Moses all received the Christian Gospel and were saved by Christ even before His birth. Interestingly, over 3,000 changes have been noted between the ''Book of Mormon'' currently published by the LDS Church, and the original 1830 edition published by Joseph Smith. Most of these alterations were made by Smith himself, in later editions of the book printed during his own lifetime. And most of them were spelling corrections, printers errors, or formatting corrections (the original copies of the Book of Mormon had no verses and only basic chapters- more detailed chapters and verses were added later on.) Some changes though were to the text itself. For instance, in I Nephi 11:32, our Lord was originally referred to as "the eternal God," but is now referred to as "the ''son'' of the eternal God." In I Nephi 11:18, the [[Theotokos]] was initially referred to as "the mother of God," while today she is referred to as "the mother of the ''Son'' of God."<ref>httphttps://www.geocitiesfairmormon.comorg/conference/swickerscaugust-2002/mormonbkchange.htmlchanges-in-the-book-of-mormon.</ref>
Connections between the history and civilization portrayed in ''The Book of Mormon'' and evidence found by archaeologists in the Americas is debatable. Evidence of horses, elephants, cattle, barley, wheat, steel swords, chariots, shipbuilding, and other Old World paraphernalia has not been found to exist in the Americas until the advent of Europeans. Evidence of these people, the gold plates, or the "seer-stones" has yet to be found.<ref>See, for instance, the Smithsonian Institute's offical statement on the ''Book of Mormon'', at</ref>
===Other Mormon "Scriptures"===
Mormons also have an open canon. As a result they have multiple sources of scripture. They accept as Scripture the ''Doctrine and Covenants'', containing 138 "revelations" and two "official declarations" allegedly given to Joseph Smith and his successors; together with . They also accept as scripture a text Mormons call the ''Pearl of Great Price'', containing which contains a variety of disconnected by Mormons believe revealed texts. These include the "Book of Moses," (a rewriting by text that Joseph Smith claimed was a revealed restoration of text written by Moses but which had been removed from the first part of the Book of Genesis), and that focuses on the Creation of the world and the ministry of Enoch; the "Book of Abraham," (a purported text Smith claimed to have translated form an ancient Egyptian scroll and which professes to be an account of the Patriarch [[Abraham]], with his early life in Ur, and the Creation which references to multiple "gods" in the act of creation, rather than one Godas Mormons do not accept the Trinity as discussed above. Some Mormons also interpret the "council of gods" mentioned in Abraham to possibly refer to pre-mortal human spirits which are here referred to as "gods" in the same manner that Psalm 82:6 calls those to whom the word of God has come as "gods" and to the way which the Savior refers to this scripture in John 10.  Additionally, Joseph Smith rewrote sections of the Bible "by inspiration" during his lifetime, making substantial additions to the text which he claimed were originally there but removed, and otherwise shaping its text to conform to his own teachings (including an alleged prophecy of his own coming). While this text was never officially adopted by the main LDS church (it was adopted, and various on the other texts hand, by the Community of Christ), a portion of -Joseph Smith's reworking of Matthew 24- it appears in the ''Pearl of Great Price'' and as footnotes in the official LDS editions of the King James Version of the Bible, the KJV being the official English language Bible for the LDS Church.
AdditionallyLastly, Joseph Smith rewrote there is a section in the entire Bible "by inspirationPearl of Great Price," during his lifetime, making substantial additions to titled the text, deleting the Song "Articles of Solomon entirely, and otherwise shaping its text to conform to his own teachings (including an alleged prophecy Faith." These are 13 basic statements of his own coming)official LDS beliefs. While this text was never officially adopted by the main LDS church (it was adoptedJoseph Smith first wrote them in a letter to John Wentworth, on the other hand, by the Community of Christ)an American newspaper editor, portions of it appear in the response to Mr. Wentworth''Pearl s request to know what members of Great Price'' and as footnotes the Church believed. They were subsequently published in the official LDS editions of the King James Version of the Bible (still the official LDS version)Church periodicals. Eventually they were canonized.
==Mormonism and Polygamy==
Plural marriage was practiced by early Mormon church leaders. Many sources say that Smith had as many as twenty to thirty wives, <ref></ref> while Brigham Young counted fifty20 wives.<ref></ref>DBetween 1852 and 1890, Mormons openly practiced "plural marriage," which was their term for their form of polygamy. Michael Quinn, ''The Mormon Hierarchy: Origins Most plural families lived in Utah. Women and men who lived within plural marriage attested to challenges and difficulties but also to the love and joy they found within their families. They believed it was a commandment of Power''God at that time and that obedience would bring great blessings to them and their posterity.  Although some leaders had large polygamous families, Signature Books, Salt Lake City, 1994, 685 pages, ISBN 1two-56085-056-6thirds of polygamist men had only two wives at a time. Church leaders recognized that plural marriages could be particularly difficult for women. Divorce was therefore available to women who were unhappy in their marriages; Appendix 6remarriage was also readily available. Women sometimes married at young ages in the first decade of Utah settlement, "Biographical Sketches of Officers which was typical of women living in frontier areas at the Church of Jesus Christ time. At its peak in 1857, perhaps one half of all Utah Latter- day Saintsexperienced plural marriage as a husband, 1830-47" pp. 607-608)wife, or child.</ref> The Church percentage of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints practiced polygamy until 1890, when they ended it to ensure Utah’s statehoodthose involved in plural marriage steadily declined over the next three decades.
During the years that plural marriage was publicly taught, not all Latter-day Saints were expected to live the principle, though all were expected to accept it as a revelation from God. Indeed, this system of marriage could not have been universal due to the ratio of men to women. Women were free to choose their spouses, whether to enter into a polygamous or a monogamous union, or whether to marry at all. Some men entered plural marriage because they were asked to do so by Church leaders, while others initiated the process themselves; all were required to obtain the approval of Church leaders before entering a plural marriage. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints practiced polygamy until 1890, when they claim to have ended it after then Church President and Mormon Prophet Wilford Woodruff claimed to have received a "revelation" where God commanded the end of the practice. This came after 30 years of intense persecution for Mormons as the US government sought to use the force of law to compel Mormons into giving up their polygamous practices.<ref></ref>  Today about 70% of Utah is Mormon, and around . Around 60,000 or so are belong to polygamous, though splinter churches which the the mainline LDS Church sees as apostates. It excommunicates anyone advocating or practicing it. Other breakaway Mormon sects practice polygamy secretly. Despite the huge publicity campaign the LDS Church has constructed to disassociate itself from polygamy, Mormons and plural marriage are still commonly associated in contemporary culture. While it may have been renounced by the main LDS body, there is no doubt that Mormonism and its unholy practice of plural marriage remain closely entwined, especially since mainline LDS members are still required to affirm the propriety of polygamy when it ''was '' authorized by their church (prior to 1890).
The Orthodox Church condemns all forms of plural marriage as an unnatural practice.
*[[w:Mormonism|Wikipedia: Mormonism]]
*[ Community of Christ] (Website for the Community of Christ, the second-largest Mormon sect)
*[ To Those Who Are Investigating Mormonism by Richard Packham] (Packham is a former member of the LDS)*[ HBO’s Big Love] (Big Love is a television drama portraying Mormon polygamists living secretly in modern-day Utah)

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