Joel Campbell, aÂ columnistÂ for MormonTimes, recently wrote about the issue he has with people using the term Mormon to refer to a church other than the Salt Lake-based The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
As both a journalist and a Mormon, I am continually dismayed that the Vancouver Sun and associated CanWest wire service choose to describe the British Columbia polygamist group with the terms “Mormon sect” and the “fundamentalist Mormon.”
I disagree with Mr. Campbell.
In my opinion, Mormon is an acceptable term to use to refer to any of the sects that originate from the church Joseph Smith founded. I see a parallel between the use of Mormon and the use of Protestant.Â I view Mormonism as an umbrella term that refers to all those who believe in the First Vision and the Book of Mormon, even if otherÂ minutiaeÂ differs.
That being said, I agree with Mr. Campbell that a clearÂ distinctionÂ should be made between my church and other Mormon churches. I think responsible journalists and editors should ensure the use of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints when referring to my church, and the proper names of other churches when referring to them.