The Mormon religion has been growing substantially since its organization on April 6, 1830, in New York. In the last 180 years, its membership has grown to 14,131,467. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, as the Mormon Church is officially known, now has more members outside of the United States than inside it, making it a truly worldwide religion.
The Mormon people are known for being happy and for serving others. They are taught to seek out the virtuous things of the world (Article of Faith 13) and to obey the laws of the land in which they live. The Mormon temples which now dot the earth now number more than 130. These beautiful buildings continue to capture the attention of the communities in which they are built. Each temple has an open house period of two to three weeks, before its dedication, in which members of the public are invited to walk through the building and to ask questions about the Mormon religion as well as Mormon temples. These increasing opportunities are helping to dispel a lot of persisting misconceptions and prejudices about the frequently misunderstood religion.
Latter-day Saints (as the Mormons prefer to be called) are encouraged to build up their communities wherever they are. Work is an eternal principle of Mormon doctrine, and idleness is viewed as a vice. Self-reliance is an aspect of Mormon welfare, with the motto of doing all we can to “help people help themselves.”
There are many famous Mormons in society today, including Gladys Knight, Mitt Romney, Alan Ashton (former WordPerfect CEO), Dale Murphy (Atlanta Braves Hall of Famer), Danny Ainge, Ty Detmer, and many others. Often when people not of the Mormon faith hear names like this, they are surprised because they consider the Mormon religion more of a cult. There is nothing cultish about Mormonism, however. Mormons worship Jesus Christ as their Savior, as all other believing Christians do. Mormons simply have the fulness of the truth, and wish to add the joy of that truth to what other people already have.
Doris White is a native of Oregon and graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in English and a minor in Editing. She loves to talk with others about the gospel of Jesus Christ.