Bozeman Mormons Share What They Believe
Part of doing a talk radio show in Bozeman is knowing a little about a lot of things. I am not a collage professor giving a lecture. The show is wake up, here’s some news, maybe a little humor, let’s talk about stuff. We have phone lines so people can call in and we are the first talk station in Bozeman and Livingston to have a live text line during the show.
One part of Dominick In The Morning is a segment called “This Day In History.” This segment is a hold over from the AM1450’s Tom Egelhoff’s morning show. I was told it was popular. So each morning I talk about things that happened in history on this date.
Friday, June 9th I reported that (This is from Wikipedia)
- 1978 – The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints opens its priesthood to “all worthy men”, ending a 148-year-old policy of excluding black men.
I went on to tell why The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or the Mormons have had this policy of not letting blacks into the priesthood, for over a hundred years.
Having done talk radio and telling this exciting story on my shows in Las Vegas, Denver, Sacramento and Birmingham, I know when I talk about what Mormons believe, I get calls and emails from people claiming to be Mormons, upset.
Here are two emails, with two different points of view.
Hey DominickI heard your brief missive on Mormonism’s historical policy on blacks and the priesthood, but didn’t have time to call in. I hate to discuss it in an email as writing cannot communicate the non-reactionary, friendly, matter-of-fact tone I’d prefer in person, but I had commitments that I couldn’t delay.I felt you were playing a little fast and loose with Mormon beliefs. Just like me having friends who are cardiologists doesn’t make me a cardiothroracic surgeon, knowing Mormons at UNLV doesn’t make an expert on Mormon doctrine, and probably should have been considered before presenting things so summarily this morning.
You were right, Mormons do believe that Jesus and Satan, like all of us, are the spirit children of God. So yes, we believe they are brothers, BUT THAT BELIEF HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH RACE. As you said, we believe that before this life God’s children chose whether to accept Christ or follow a rebellious Satan. Those who chose Satan were cast out of heaven and would never have the opportunity to be born into this life. It has never been taught or believed that those who rejected Christ’s plan to be a Savior in heaven were made black. We believe they were never born.Mixing this Doctrine with the policy of blacks and LDS priesthood is misleading.The LDS church has made an official statement that articulates the details of this policy in a public essay. https://www.lds.org/topics/race-and-the-priesthood?lang=engCalling LDS people to account for this history on air is as productive as calling our Catholic friends and neighbors out for the crusades, or Protestants for the executions driven by Calvin, or Christians in general for Peter and the Apostles waiting until Acts Chapter 10 to let Cornelius and other non-Jewish gentiles be baptized as Christians. There is more to each of these instances than can be addressed fairly and responsibly on a morning radio show.Thank you for your consideration. Hope you have a happy weekend.Wha
DominickMormons believed black skin was God’s curse against the descendants of Cain after he murdered Able.Some Christian traditions believe in the curse of Ham after he defamed his father after seeing him naked. These descendants are today’s Muslims.Bill
“You were right, Mormons do believe that Jesus and Satan, like all of us, are the spirit children of God. So yes, we believe they are brothers, BUT THAT BELIEF HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH RACE. As you said, we believe that before this life God’s children chose whether to accept Christ or follow a rebellious Satan. Those who chose Satan were cast out of heaven and would never have the opportunity to be born into this life. It has never been taught or believed that those who rejected Christ’s plan to be a Savior in heaven were made black. We believe they were never born.”
The justifications for this restriction echoed the widespread ideas about racial inferiority that had been used to argue for the legalization of black “servitude” in the Territory of Utah.10 According to one view, which had been promulgated in the United States from at least the 1730s, blacks descended from the same lineage as the biblical Cain, who slew his brother Abel.11 Those who accepted this view believed that God’s “curse” on Cain was the mark of a dark skin. Black servitude was sometimes viewed as a second curse placed upon Noah’s grandson Canaan as a result of Ham’s indiscretion toward his father.12 Although slavery was not a significant factor in Utah’s economy and was soon abolished, the restriction on priesthood ordinations remained.
In 1852, President Brigham Young publicly announced that men of black African descent could no longer be ordained to the priesthood, though thereafter blacks continued to join the Church through baptism and receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost. Following the death of Brigham Young, subsequent Church presidents restricted blacks from receiving the temple endowment or being married in the temple. Over time, Church leaders and members advanced many theories to explain the priesthood and temple restrictions. None of these explanations is accepted today as the official doctrine of the Church.
Church leaders pondered promises made by prophets such as Brigham Young that black members would one day receive priesthood and temple blessings. In June 1978, after “spending many hours in the Upper Room of the [Salt Lake] Temple supplicating the Lord for divine guidance,” Church President Spencer W. Kimball, his counselors in the First Presidency, and members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles received a revelation.