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I first went to The Church of Latter Day Saints when I was in high school. The parking lot to the Mormon church was at the end of our back yard on South Washington Street. I would walk to school and pass through their parking lot. One time I was invited to their church and I was surprised to see a female give the sermon. I came from a Catholic family who baptized me Catholic as a baby. Women were only "good enough" to be nuns. They surely weren't in position to give a congregation a message from God. I was presently surprised and this experience opened my eyes. The questions about my Catholic faith began to surface. Why do we need to talk to men only about our sins? Why was Mary good enough to birth our savior but not good enough to teach us about him?
Mormonism is the only religion that is relatively new. They have done an excellent job of keeping all our genealogy records and making them accessible to anyone who wants to find out about their own heritage. When my kids around five and seven, I was helping my African-American husband try to locate his father's great grandfather Abum Carr. My kids were sitting quietly as I sat looking through tons of micro-fish film. A lady came in and asked us to leave as kids were not allowed in that area of the research facility. I knew what was happening as there was a "white" family with a young two-year old who was making a lot of noise and they were not asked to leave. I'm sure this lady has read Brigham Youngs quote..."Shall I tell you the law of God in regard to the African race? If the white man who belongs to the chosen seed mixes his blood with the seed of Cain, the penalty, under the law of God, is death on the spot. This will always be so." (Journal of Discourses, vol. 10, p. 110).
|Angel Moroni on top of the Temple in gold|
|Brigham Young carrying his family 1300 miles to the West|
The religion would all but have been dead if it weren't for Brigham Young who lead members in a 1300 mile exodus walking with children on man-made wooden wagons to the barren desert of Utah. In 1890, the church officially abandoned the plural marriage belief and this opened the door for Utah's statehood. The whole foundation of the Mormons who often feel misunderstood as they are good citizens and good people. My own observation is that every family that had five or seven or more children was better behaved than the families that I see in the south and the east with one or two children. Patience and mutual respect is evident in their families.
As for the musical on Broadway, I can't help having a connection with it and its signature song, I Believe. I have had this same saying for years. It is on and in my car, on and in my home & on and in my heart. It is my personal daily thought...I Believe. The title song I Believe gets to me. Without the context of the entire musical, it speaks to me because I do believe without proof, it is the core of my own spiritual religion. Faith. To not do so would be to live a useless life. Doom. Gloom. Purposeless. It provides a religion that is inclusive and easy to adopt into one's life. It is perplexing how the Book of Mormon Broadway show is so good that it actually is the opposite, exclusive, so exclusive one can't get tickets. It will be years before I can ever see it.
|Beehive House Garden full of tulips|
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Footnote: Information was used from Newsweek 2011 about today's Mormons in Congress and our Federal Government.