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Here are some news stories and articles which might be of interest to you. I've posted the opening section, and if you want to read more, you can click on "Read the whole article" to go to the original item. You'll find a variety of things here -- current news, political analysis, opinion pieces, articles about religion -- things I've happened to read and want to share with you. It's your Reading Room, so take your time. Browse. You're certain to find something you'll want to read.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

What You Need to Know About the Mormons

But They Probably Won't Tell You

by Isaiah Bennett

"Good morning, sir. I'm Elder Lamb and this is Elder Sanders. We're from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and we have an important message for you. May we come in?"

If you let them in, you've invited them to begin the process of "discussions," six canned lessons they've been trained to deliver, leading, ideally, to your baptism into the Mormon Church.

They'll begin by telling you the Heavenly Father has a plan for your eternal happiness. Jesus Christ and Joseph Smith are central figures in this plan of salvation. Both prophets, ancient and modern, reveal the purpose and will of God. The Book of Mormon is additional scripture testifying to the message.

The lessons last about an hour each and are spread over four to six weeks. On their second and subsequent visits, the young missionaries will urge you to repentance, faith in their doctrines, baptism into their church, and moral living. Only their church, they say, can lead you to true righteousness and ultimate salvation. All other so-called Christian churches profess creeds abominable to the Lord and offer only counterfeit holiness (Joseph Smith, History 1:19; found in the Mormon book of scripture The Pearl of Great Price). Shortly after the death of the apostles, Mormons claim, the pure Christian faith was overtaken by false doctrine and vanished totally from the earth. This "apostasy" was reversed and the true Church was restored in 1830 in upstate New York by the boy-prophet, Joseph Smith.

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Fr. Phillips is the founding pastor of Our Lady of the Atonement Catholic Church, the first Anglican Use parish, established on August 15, 1983. Not that there is any confusion, but he is on the left, shown in his younger, less gray-headed days.