Poll: What’s a Mormon?

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28 thoughts on “Poll: What’s a Mormon?

  1. This is a good question. I thought it was interesting a few year ago when the church started on the whole “full name” kick. This was followed not long after by “they have nothing whatsoever to do with us.”

    “We’re not Mormons – but they aren’t, either!”

    I’ll be interested to see what the poll turns up.

  2. I think it’s one who actively follows the LDS doctrine and practices, with ordinances and attendance and all. Calling oneself a cucumber salad does not make it so.

  3. I have no problem with anyone self-identifying as mormon. My uncle always did, though he stopped going to church shortly after primary, and was pretty much clueless about much of doctrine or culture. He came from an LDS family, and he felt like he was mormon, though he was clearly not practicing at least half of how LDS people live.

    I think it was fortunately no one ever decided to track him down, during his years of not attending church or living a mormon lifestyle, to excommunicate him. When he was dying, there were priesthood blessings and sisters from church to come visit and sing to him. You could say some of that was for the sake of the family, yet it was a great comfort to him.

  4. I would grant the name to anybody who believes the Book of Mormon is the word of God. That wasn’t an option, so I voted for the first, which came closest in spirit.

  5. Kim, I also need another option because none fit.

    I’d define a Mormon as anyone who self-identifies as a Mormon, excluding children.

  6. I’ve been thinking a lot about this in light of the FLDS situation in Texas.

    If the LDS church gets to self-identify as “christian” based on our own definition of what it means regardless of whether other christians agree with us or want to share the title with us, then LDS members need to allow others to self-identify themselves as “mormon” whether we agree with it or not or want to be associated with them.

  7. I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. That is with a Big PERIOD. I do not Identify with the nick name Mormon. It means something different to various people in different places. The meaning of term Mormon has varied in my life. The identity of a LDS member has not.

  8. Rider,

    If you want to get that anal about it, you may also want to include the hyphen and change the “d” in “Day” to lowercase to match the actual name of the church (i.e. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints).

  9. Kim Siever

    I apologize for leaving you with the impression, I had something against your poll. I just can’t find myself in any of your categories. The word Mormon was first used as a derogatory against church members. It still gets used in a negative way. You only need to “google” it, to find examples.

    I have seen too much anti Mormon this and that. I’ve rarely seen anti LDS propaganda.

  10. “The word Mormon was first used as a derogatory against church members.”

    Nope. It was first used by the church on TV commercials. Recall all the ads that said brought to you by ‘The Mormons’?

  11. “It was first used by the church on TV commercials”

    Wow there was TV commercials in 1830’s… who knew :)

  12. You can’t argue that you don’t want to be called something that your own organization has used in its’ PR campaigns…

  13. That all depends on the reason it was used.

    My understanding was that the use of Mormons was part of a phased campaign to get the public used to the name of the church. It started with “The Mormons”, progressed to “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints: The Mormons”, and is now “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”

    This doesn’t mean the church wanted to be called “The Mormons”.

  14. Are you serious?

    It makes absolutely no sense to use a phrase which is insulting toward the organization on a commercial designed to increase interest in the organization.

    In the vernacular of the vast majority of the world, ‘the mormons’ is who the members of the church are, for the very reason that they used the phrase in those commercials.

    Other than exposure to the phrase on TV, most people wouldn’t even know about the church at all.

  15. Are you serious?

    Members of the church have been called Mormons for nearly 200 years. It makes complete sense to use a phrase, even if it is disparaging, in a campaign that over time is designed to get the public to switch from that term to a different time.

    How would you recommend the church get people to switch from using “Mormon”, which they’d used for 150 years prior to the campaign, to using the name of the church if the church cannot use the term “Mormon”?

  16. Saying I am a chicken pot pie does not make me one. I still think there needs to be some formality, like an LDS baptism, you know, some choice, not just “I am one because I say I am.”

    Christians are a category, like saying “I’m a North American” not a yellow-pages type church.

  17. Deca,

    What do you think of the Baptist claim that members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are not Christian?

  18. Seriously, though, “mormon” only has negative connotations if you want it to. I thought it was stupid when the church got on that “Don’t call us mormons” kick ~10 years ago. I’ve always been mormon and i probably always will be, and I’m proud of what the title implies. No need to get angry, though. Rider can be a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; I’ll be a mormon. …and Rider and I can still get together for hot-dogs over the weekend.

  19. “Rider and I can still get together for hot-dogs over the weekend.”

    Sounds good to me :)

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