Utah Immigration

 

LUCKY SEVERSON, correspondent: It was a huge surprise when the legislature of one of the most conservative states passed one of the more liberal immigration laws in the country. That legislation will most likely be preempted by federal law, but the bigger surprise was how it angered so many members of Utah’s predominate faith, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, otherwise known as the Mormons or LDS, even though it was the church that pushed through the legislation. This is Utah state senator Curt Bramble, a Republican and Mormon who helped craft the bill.

SENATOR CURT BRAMBLE: Personally I have not seen the LDS church lobby any issue harder than they’re activity on House Bill 116, the immigration legislation.

RON MORTENSEN: I jokingly said, you know, they may as well just pitched a tent in the back halls.

SEVERSON: Ron Mortensen is a career foreign service officer and a former Mormon missionary. He founded the Utah Coalition on Illegal Immigration and he’s not too happy with his church.

Ron MortensenMORTENSEN: The church lobbyists had full access where normal people can’t go, in the back halls and through all the back alleyways and they were there full time this session.

SEVERSON: And the result was legislation that would allow undocumented immigrant families to continue living and working in the state, providing, among other things, they have no criminal record and pay a fine for being in the country illegally.

Originally the legislature was only going to pass an enforcement bill similar to the controversial one in Arizona until a compact of churches and the chamber of commerce asked for an additional bill with a more compassionate approach.

Critics like Representative Chris Herrod, a Republican and former missionary, say the bill was forced on the legislature.

REP. CHRIS HERROD: I’ve never in 5 years seen a bill pass in the fashion that that was passed.

SEVERSON: Because of the church?

post04-utahimmigrationREP. HERROD: Well, some could argue that but again that doesn’t make it right.

SEVERSON: Tim Chambless is a professor with the Hinkley Institute Of Political Science at the University of Utah.

PROFESSOR TIM CHAMBLESS: We do know that the Utah State Legislature is unique because about 91 percent of the 104 members of the Utah State Legislature self-identify as LDS.  And each member, almost each member would say they’re a good church member. They’re a member of the Republican party and their a good church member and they’re very divided on this issue.

SEVERSON: At first is was not widely known how hard the church had lobbied for the guest worker law. So why did it? The church says it was the Christian thing to do, that the bedrock moral issue is how we treat each other as children of God. Quin Monson is a political science professor at Brigham Young University.

Prof. Quin MonsonPROFESSOR QUIN MONSON: There is an approach that the church has been supporting that allows people to square themselves with the law—it’s allowing people to live without fear, to stay with their families, to pay a fine and come out of the shadows.

SEVERSON: But in the view of the legislation’s opponents, it provides amnesty for law breakers, and goes squarely against one of the church’s 13 Articles of Faith, number 12.

MORTENSEN: It basically says we honor, obey and sustain the law of the land and that’s something that all the children learn when they’re growing up and especially the older generation. It was something that was drummed into you and that was just like one of the Ten Commandments, and so when people see people not complying with the law, that makes them nervous and raises questions.

SEVERSON: Ron Mortensen doesn’t argue with the compassion of his church, but he thinks the bigger reason for the legislation is that the church has grown far beyond U.S. borders.

MORTENSEN: In my opinion, the church has become a worldwide church and its interests now extend far beyond Utah, and it has to meet the expectations of its worldwide audience and a very large audience in Latin America.

SEVERSON: The church has over 14 million members worldwide, with more than half residing outside the United States.

MONSON: The population of Mormons in Mexico is hundreds of thousands if not over a million. There are at least a dozen temples of the church in Mexico and hundreds of chapels, so it’s a big population and it’s big all throughout Latin America.

Prof. Tim ChamblessCHAMBLESS: The church is concerned that anything that hurts its missionary effort is going to be something that maybe the church would not support.

MONSON: Utah is very cleanly connected with the church in a lot of people’s mind, outside of Utah and outside of the United States. And so if Utah is enacting some draconian restrictive immigration law, you can sort of imagine the reaction and then the blame that might be placed on the church for allowing it to happen. I can see that that might have been a motivating factor in getting involved and asking the legislature to dial it back.

MORTENSEN: There’s been pretty credible stories about withholding visas for missionaries in order to bring pressure on the church, so they’re playing in a very international arena. It’s no longer what’s necessarily good for Utah or even the United States, it’s what’s good for us worldwide.

SEVERSON: Mortensen says it might surprise some members to learn that the church sends undocumented members that live in the U.S. on stateside missions.

MORTENSEN: It’s long been the policy of the church to allow undocumented members to have temple recommends and to hold the priesthood, and it’s up to the bishops to decide if they’re worthy of that or not.

SEVERSON: Undocumented missionaries have been deported, and recently two minor church officials and their families were expelled from the country because they were here illegally. The church says it discourages members from entering any country without legal documentation.

Sen. Curt BrambleFor those who argue that a guest worker law violates federal law, others like Senator Curt Bramble, refer to a higher law, and uses the church’s harboring of runaway slaves as an example.

SENATOR BRAMBLE: During the 1860s, before the Civil War, members of the church that harbored slaves because slavery was immoral, was a violation of the law. We can talk throughout the history of mankind where laws that are on the books or laws that someone is demanding you follow result in an outcome that in and of itself is a violation of a higher law.

SEVERSON: Mortensen says the church’s view of the law may be changing because he thinks the church itself is changing.

MORTENSEN: The LDS church seems to be moving towards more of a social justice position and away from conservatism where it’s traditionally been.

SEVERSON: The pushback against the immigration law has been so public, delegates to the state Republican convention narrowly passed a resolution demanding that the law be repealed. Professor Quin Monson has done a study about how influential church endorsements can be with the membership, and he says as more members know how strongly the church feels about a guest worker provision, the tide may turn.

MONSON: When the church comes out and officially endorses a position and it’s united and the membership knows about it, then you see people shifting their position and this is even true when the issue pushes the membership in a direction that they might not otherwise want to go.

MORTENSEN: This is really a very, very divisive issue and I never have—on other issues—I never have heard people say, well, I’m going to stop paying fast offerings or I’m going to withhold some of my contributions or I’m really questioning my testimony, and I’m having people say that to me on this particular issue.

SEVERSON: Opponents say they’ll try to derail the guest worker law during the next legislative session although it seems unlikely they will succeed. For Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly, I’m Lucky Severson in Salt Lake City.

  • jm fay

    Could the LDS have compassion for the legal residents and or citizens who cant find a job; dont get enough hours or need a better paying job before they advocate for amnesty for illegals? There just isnt enough jobs to go around in this economy and it seems our own are forgotten about.

  • Alex

    Everybody says there is this RACE problem. Everybody says this RACE problem will be solved when the third world pours into EVERY white country and ONLY into white countries.

    The Netherlands and Belgium are just as crowded as Japan or Taiwan, but nobody says Japan or Taiwan will solve this RACE problem by bringing in millions of third worlders and quote assimilating unquote with them.

    Everybody says the final solution to this RACE problem is for EVERY white country and ONLY white countries to “assimilate,” i.e., intermarry, with all those non-whites.

    What if I said there was this RACE problem and this RACE problem would be solved only if hundreds of millions of non-blacks were brought into EVERY black country and ONLY into black countries?

    How long would it take anyone to realize I’m not talking about a RACE problem. I am talking about the final solution to the BLACK problem?

    And how long would it take any sane black man to notice this and what kind of psycho black man wouldn’t object to this?

    But if I tell that obvious truth about the ongoing program of genocide against my race, the white race, Liberals and respectable conservatives agree that I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.

    They say they are anti-racist. What they are is anti-white.

    Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

  • Edwin Werntz

    Are the immigrants having compassion for us or our laws? NO I say. They all shoud be sent back home and immigrate legally. The church should not allow illegals to hold offices or be able to attend temple services. Not being able to function in the church, may send some of them home. Our members are taught from youth obey the laws of the land. That is one of the many teachings of the church. Stand up for the right. Allow no illegals take our jobs and destroy our country. DO WHAT IS RIGHT. LET THE CONSEQUENCES FOLLOW.

  • Jeff Cunningham

    For all the children of God, this is the time of the sifting of the ” wheat and the tares”. Remember the Lord has said ” the earth is enough ” meaning there is enough for us all. Beware pride and remember we are all unfit before God without the atonement.

  • Bob P

    I am in my 70′s and I am fourth generation active Mormon. Part of my family arrived in Utah in 1847 and another part came with the Martin Handcart company in 1856.

    The attitude of many members of my beloved church on immigration sickens and saddens me. They have become the modern equivalent of the worst of the Pharisees. To quote the 12th article of faith in the manner they have, seemingly requiring a blind obedience to draconian law, is not much removed from those who cooperated with anti Jewish laws in Nazi Germany.

    I have hopes that they will be moved by good sense; Insomuch as ye have done it unto the least of these, my children, ye have done it unto me.

  • Dodi Dern

    Why bother to send out missionaries when we’re no longer sure from time to time what the beliefs of the church are anymore. People tend to lose respect for those who compromise what were purported to be their values. Did I sleep through the part where the Articles of Faith were repealed, withdrawn? Someone needs to do a reality check — politics can be very seductive and very corrupting — and all this rationalizing sounds very much like politics. The slavery issue had to do with whether one human being could own another, and the fact that blacks had been classified as non-humans. This is not, by any stretch, the same issue.

  • Mary

    The law is still the law and right now the church says that certain members can get away with breaking the law and others can’t and they should still pay all their obligations and just swallow it. When the United States becomes like the third world because our people can’t get jobs, etc., and pay their tithes and offerings–will the latin american countries step up to the plate to support the rest of the church worldwide? I thought that God couldn’t look upon sin with the least degree of allowance and shouldn’t we be at least trying to be the best we can be? We all make mistakes but most of us don’t knowlngly and willingly “break” into another country and then demand that we be accepted and catered to. Simply annoying and confusing.

  • Chelsea

    I am LDS. I am Republican. I voted to Repeal HB116. I did not lose one ounce of my testimony over this. I have not stopped paying my tithing. I have not criticized the Church for doing what they did. I understand that their political focus is not on Utah or even the U.S., but on the Overall World Picture. I think if this bill had been passed the “Right Way” by lobbying the people of the state of Utah and fully airing the bill in its entirety before it was passed, there may have been an entirely different outcome. What has caused the outcry is the way in which it was passed. This was a last minute, backdoor, forced vote. The Senate sent this bill with a note that said, “You pass this or we will fail Senator Sandstrom’s bill.” This bill was passed by a rules vote, very similar to the way that ObamaCare was passed. There was no chance to discuss it, no options to modify it, and no hope of transparent discussion. LDS or not, this is not the way we want our Legislators to behave. I agree that if a law is unjust, it should be changed and once it is changed that the proscribed action is no longer illegal. The real problems here are that Utah does not have the Constitutional right to make this change on a State Level, that they are giving false hope to illegal immigrants if they believe the Feds will give a waiver for this, and that they did it in a sneaky, pushy, and dishonest manner. That is not becoming of our Legislators or members of the LDS church.

  • Kristen Pace

    I’m failing to see how this legislation is church endorsed when the 1st Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints never came out and supported it. Just because a number of members of the church endorsed it does not mean that the church as a whole endorses it.

  • Robert

    “Compassion,” “love thy neighbor,” and “treating each other as children of God” really are non-issues in the illegal-immigration discussion — there is no “lack of compassion” or “mistreatment of illegal aliens” problem in America to speak of. Nor are these principles incompatible with upholding the rule of law and safeguarding thereby the integrity and security of the nation and the religious and other liberties which it offerers. I find it troubling then that these Christian principles are being hijacked, distorted, and misapplied in this discussion in order to obfuscate another agenda.

  • Elaine Fontana

    This is a very sensitive issue. I trust the leaders of our church, I sustain them in all things. I believe this is an issue they have spent much time in consultation and prayer to arrive at an answer. I believe President Monson, receives direction from the Lord and he follows the directions received. Though we may not fully understand all the ramifications, the Lord does and I’m willing to trust in Him.

  • Russell Sias

    I, as a Latter Day Saint member, (and a U.S. citizen) am expected to follow the law. Church leadership will ultimately hold me accountable if I intentionally choose not to do so. We teach one another that our burdens are tests to be overcome, not avoided, and we (as U.S. citizens) are expected to work to resolve issues, making correct and principled choices. We (as U.S. citizens) frown upon running from the problems each of us face. We (as U.S. citizens) teach one another to face them, and deal with them, utilizing the principles we know to be correct.

    We (as U.S. citizens) do not teach one another that breaking the law is acceptable. We know that the right thing to do is to stand up and be counted, and attempt to fix our problems – and obey the law while doing so. We (as U.S. citizens) do not condone violations of our laws just because things get difficult. Not one of believe that stealing from another can be justified because we are financially strapped.

    We, (as U.S. citizens) teach one other that we have principles, they are to be honored, and that the consequence of violating these principles is loss of our ability to return to our Heavenly Father’s presence.

    Yet, we see our church leaders authorizing violation of these very same laws. Their solution to putting undocumented missionaries on planes (risking deportation) is to put them on a bus – for TSA doesn’t check (yet) on buses. This raises the eyebrows of thinking members who know this is happening. We see church leaders standing along side of, and in apparent support of, HB116, which attempts to legalize violations of our federal laws, creates a guest worker program in violation of federal law, grants amnesty, etc. We have seen church support for granting instate tuition rates to those who are in violation of our laws, in spite of federal code that prohibits doing so as we are doing it. Visible demonstrations such as these explain the position of the church much more so than any ambiguous statements they might make.

    Sen. Bramble sponsored a Driver’s Privilege Card. The ONLY people that needs this card ARE those here in intentional violation of our laws! This done apparently, with the blessing of our church leaders as well, for many say that there were significant indications that the church was not only supportive, but actually lobbying for the DPC at the time.

    Members (as U.S. citizens) are beginning to think independently of their church leaders. They are beginning to realize that right is right, and evaluate issues, not just as sheep who only follow, but as thinking individuals. The recent filings of the Lawful Employment Ordinance initiative is just one example of this happening.

    I expect in coming years, to see legislators being held accountable for ignoring the wishes of their constituents. The idea that because their church leaders ask these elected leaders to support something contrary to their voter’s wishes, this change of allegiance, away from the position of their constituents, is going to bring about the replacement of many of them.

    Latter Day Saint members are a law abiding and law respecting group. They will ultimately demand that THEIR elected representatives actually represent them, not anyone else. They do understand that there is a separation of church and state. They will demand that their elected representatives honor the commitment that each legislator personally makes to their voters. Or, they will toss them out of office. There are already some who refer to their elected representatives as thugs. This attitude will only become more prevalent as long as the legislature continues to ignore the wishes of those who elect them – and demand to actually be represented.

    Those groups who choose to ignore our state citizens and voters by pandering to lobby efforts in favor of religious organizations in our state, or the Chamber, or the Sutherland Institute, need to wake up. Sen. Bramble has apparently chosen to support his own convictions instead of representing the voters who elected him. Panderers such as he, are going to forced to make some choices, or lose their elected positions.

    The handwriting is on the wall, for the people have already started to demand this happen. These political leaders will have to recognize the awakening of the people – or retire as politicians. Chris Cannon is gone. Bob Bennett is gone. Is Sen. Hatch next? Or will it be Sen. Bramble? Or both? Or more than just these two? Maybe, in fact, likely.

    Time will tell, but the movement is already under way. The Lawful Employment Ordinance is under way. It is an effort to bypass the panderers and go directly to the people. The people are about to speak – in spite of those that want to ignore their wishes.

  • jfcain

    I’m one for sustaining the law of the land. I came here to the U. S. legally. We waited seven years to get into the United States, we had to have a sponsor, a job waiting and had so much money saved. We went though lots of paper work (get a Greeen card) and had to have a medical exam and shots. No, it’s not easy but very worth it. Too many people want instant gradifcation and don’t want to wait and work for something. All other countries have much tougher laws including Mexico. In these tough ecomonic times U. S. citizens have a hard time finding jobs themselves.. You break one law and it is so much easier to break other laws. Steal other people’s ident ifcation, fake ID and making up a history. I became a citizen in January of 2007.

  • Ross

    It’s time to get rid of those legislators; illegal immigration is destroying this country and the Dumbocrats are allowing it because illegal voters usually vote for Dumbrocrats to get their “entitlements”. How long can this country afford illegal immigration and the Democrats?

  • Bonnie Bell

    As a member of the LDS church, I am appalled at the Church encouraging illegal immigration will be allowed in Utah. Our laws are not draconian nor restrictive President Monson. I don’t care if the blame is placed on the church for not allowing illegals. I hope that we would be a nation of people who uphold the law. We allow and have allowed immigration to this country but to do it legally. We haven’t the resources available to take care of our own much less others that are here illegally. I am totally against the policy no matter where it comes from, but seriously disappointed that it comes from the Prophet and the church leaders. Regarding Mexico and South America, if we were to go into their countries illegally we would be thrown in jail or even killed. Those are draconian laws. We Americans don’t want the illegals here!! I seriously don’t care if Mexico doesn’t allow U.S. Missionaries into their country, the church is very strong there…Let them preach the gospel within their own country with their own missionaries. If the church moves toward social justice instead of conservatism, I will stop going and paying my tithing…

  • Rex Whitmer

    First of all, I am LDS, raised in the Church and a part of my genealogy goes back to original church members.
    Second, I live on the border in Arizona and see and am aware of illegals invading the nation.
    Third, I am aware of the legal means for persons to gain citizenship in our country. It normally takes a good amount of time to become legalized and there is a purpose for that. First of all they must have a sponsor, some one whom will guarantee that the immigrant will not become a drain on the state. Second the party must learn to read, speak, and understand English which is the language of the majority of our citizens.

    When illegas invade our nation they do so as breakers of our law. They often bring diseases that were at one time almost gone. From the things I see about ninety percent immediately present themselves to helpers whom present them to our welfare organizations for housing, food and other expenses. They make no effort to learn the language of the country and expect everyone else to speak theirs. They illegally vote where they can get away with it! Since it’s against the law to challenge most voters now that’s everywhere they are. They freely commit crimes and expect the population to lie to protect them from the law and the population does just that.. If all else fails they flee back to their homeland and wait and then re-enter. Now I do actually understand how the Church feels on the matter, but the leaders are closing their eyes and pinching their noses to go for this. They usually send respondents from our Curch to the Catholic Church because of their extensive underground railroad. In my occupation before I retired, I sometimes had to deal with people whom had lived in the US for three generation whom could speak little or no English.

  • Peter Schlegel

    How is it my friend Julio Puello when he applied to serve a mission 6 yrs. ago was sent back to Panama to get his papers in legal order. He was not allowed to serve a mission until he was “legal”. How can you not follow Church doctrine which as stated by the Prophet Joseph that we believe in being subject to kings, magistrates and the laws of the land but answer yes to the question “Are you honest with your fellow man?” on a temple recommend interview. What has changed and who changed it? Is there some shades of gray that are creeping in to our doctrine, beliefs, and commandments of God? Just trying to understand.

    One cannot compare slavery, whereby people were brought here into forced labor against their will, as the moral equivalent as someone coming up here from South America to better themselves and their family by their own free will. You cannot put a label (conservatism or social justice) on what is right and wrong. I am not for separating parents and children. Surely we need to find an answer to some of these issues but you can’t do so by having two separate laws for people living in the same country.

    I am all for legal immigration. When I married my wife, a citizen of the Philippines, I had to wait in all the lines and jump through all the hoops. Why is it that some have to obey the law and others don’t? Who has these answers?

  • Cheryl F.

    This is a case of the church – MY church – running roughshod over the safety and economic security of our state and it’s members. As a result, I will no longer participate in any way with my church. I have abandonded it the way it abandonded me!

    Take heed, church leaders: There are many battles facing you in the future concerning civil rights issues and gay marraige, and even though I believe in traditional marriage, I will most certainly NOT defend you any longer. You’ve become corrupt and self-serving.

    Adios, but remember – the citizens of Utah will continue to fight this monstrosity, and we WILL prevail.

  • Cheryl F.

    Why doesn’t this site publish comments? My last post was polite in describing why I left the church over this issue. There is no reason for censoring comments to promote a view that is blatantly dishonest.

  • Doug K.

    Could it be the Lds church at a higher level could be divided on this issue?, Could it be that the Sutherland institute and the Chamber of commerce, La Raza, Sen. Curt Bramble, Orrin Hatch, former Senator Robert Bennett, former Representative Chris Cannon, with all their influence not to mention the Catholic church and their political connections could be exerting their heavy influence on the church?, Could it be that some higher level church members have been manipulated, seduced or cowed by globalist interests that would like to see open borders between Canada Mexico and the United States? We have been instructed by the church for years that on political issues we cannot be told what to do, we must think then research the issue, then come to our own conclusions by prayer study and our own intelligence. No matter how you slice it flooding Utah with Illegal, mostly Mexican Nationals is not the answer, the Illegal border incursion problem caused by a deliberate and methodical ramp down of prosecution of illegal aliens and non-enforcement of our laws and the subsequent problems that follow a flood of indigent poor uneducated non integrating people will as it already has in California bankrupt Utah. Unless we are really willing to talk so called social justice which is double speak for socialism and the redistribution of wealth, and we all know that this is a basic tenant of Communism, than this problem will not be solved.
    Yes something has to be done about illegal foreign nationals invading our borders and taking jobs that need to be filled by Utah’s citizens, but to keep a poorly written bill such as HB116 that has chain migration written into it that would allow whole families including aunts uncles and cousins to follow one person here is not the answer, it needs to be repealed, those here illegally need to get back in line with the rest of the world waiting to come to the United States.

  • Alvin M

    “Wherefore, I, Lehi, prophesy according to the workings of the Spirit which is in me, that there shall none come into to this land save they shall be brought by the hand of the Lord.” (2 Nephi 1:6)

    There are other scriptures which are similar but there was one in particular I wanted to show here but could not find.

    I am not for illegal immigrates getting all of the rights we, as citizens, have but I don’t think God is bound by the laws of man to deny them from coming here.

    As to the thing about illegals going on missions or having temple recommends, that is up to the bishops and counselors to determine. When the bishop ask the question about their honesty, he is not his responsibility to investigate the truth of their statement. The responsibility for the lie then rest on the liar and God will be the judge of that.

    Don’t loose your testimony of the church over this thing. The church is still directed by God and he sees and knows the whole picture.

  • Mitch van Biljon

    So in other words the articles of faith are not really articles of faith. The ends does not justify the emans and I for one am really upset about this. When any person compares this to slavery I want to vomit and am astounded at the gall of comparing illegal immigration with slavery. The church shows it’s deceit by making the claim it discourages members from entering any country without legal documentation and yet seeks to reward those that do so. That is a bald face lie and the church should openely state the following…

    1: Article 12 is now conditional
    2: That the end justifies the means

    AT least have the integrity to be honest rather than speak with a forked tongue.

  • Mitch van Biljon

    I am sick to death with idiots who make the claim we need to be compassionate and keep families together. They can stay together by all returning to the countries they emmigrated from. Further when you consider the socialist ideology of Harry Reid who has not had his membership revoked in the church I have to ask what the heck is going on with the church. I have grave concerns and until the church leadership address this issue I will not be paying a tithe.

  • robert m

    Whoever made the comment……How long can this country afford illegal immigration……………? has asked the essential question. All other points are irrelevant in the minds of most of these commentators. … If this country has set to many places at it’s table its not the fault of those who come and eat and are fed. Other countries do not do that for anyone much less illegal immigrants. It is us who are arrogant enough to believe the flow is endless. And $$$$shame on the glorified lawyers we call public servants, who sell the entiltlement$$$$ for votes. That is a legal battle most cowar to fight not an illegal problem that the same fearless cowards will sell their soul for.

    This same thing happened in the 1930′s when the greed of the legal US like today caused the same circumstances to happen as today. now as history repeats itself, this time the moral stance of the Church has not forgotten what happened to the Hispanic and is taking a stand. So repent or change churches and states people. One day immigration laws will change again like it did in the 1900′s. The US has always been flexible but is your soul?

  • Kelli P.

    Do what you must, Brothers and Sisters, but I’ll wait for the prophet to explain the reasoning behind the church’s support for this immigration law. Then I’ll pray, and fast if necessary, to know if this is direction has come from God. I met President Monson on my mission and know him to be a tremendously kind and compassionate man. I also know that he’s a prophet of God and that he’s not going to do anything that is contrary to God’s will.
    If I’ve learned anything in my 35 years as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, it’s that our Heavenly Father ALWAYS has a reason for the direction which is given to the LDS church and that I can know for myself whether or not the counsel of my leaders comes from God. I also know that Our Heavenly Father will not allow His prophet to lead us astray.
    In my opinion, no matter how strongly I might feel about an issue, (and I’ve been a very vocal oponent of illegal immigration), to just “give up” my religious faith because I disagree with something the church is rumored to have done, without taking the time to find out if the “church” is truly behind the decision, much less the reason for the decision, would demonstrate a tremendous lack of faith and a weakness of character. What a sad statement it makes that so many “Latter-day Saints” are ready to abandon the gospel, of which they’ve claimed to have a testimony, at such a small and insignificant roadblock.

  • CindyLee

    I am LDS and I sustain my prophet and Church leaders. The scriptures clearly show that the higher law is one of charity, the pure love of Christ. I am distressed by those members who have elevated their political views over the prayerful counsel of the prophet and teachings of the Savior. I pray for them daily. In my view, this controversy in the Church is a prime example of how the very elect will be deceived in the last days. While I agree that illegal immigration is contributing to economic, social and legal problems in our country and we need to enact a humane solution, those who are so rancorous about this matter are unwilling to consider some of the contributing factors. Employers and citizens alike have all enabled this problem over the years. We need to quit blaming those who come here undocumented and address the fundamental factors that have led to the problem. The solution has implications for families. Aren’t we a family-oriented church? When we behave as the natural man, we thwart the work of our Heavenly Father.

  • Mary Ellen Gilbert

    I think the LDS Church is led by God. When the church got to Utah it was part of Mexico.
    The Saints were illegal if think about Mexican rights. When Mormon Colonies
    were a haven to those hid from the US government those people hid in Mexico.

    Early Saints did not worry about bringing Aliens into the US. Americans got nervous about the Mormons bringing in all those non Americans in to the country.

    Do not think that the Lords church will harm the USA. People can have opinions.
    Right now the Utah people think they know better than the Church.
    It was pretty crazy to move alll those people to Utah back then but they followed the Prophet even though Utah looked God forsaken. Those who did not go to Utah lost
    Get real about what is good and better for humanity.
    Mary Ellen & Roger Gilbert

  • PaulC1958

    When churches get deeply involved in politics in direct violation of their tax exempt status, they should have that status revoked. I have no problem with church involvement in politics so long as they pay taxes like the rest of us.

  • dOUG hEFFLEY

    This churchy not only violates it’s tax exempt staus but it’s own Doctrine & Words of Wisdom. But in reality it just follow a long history of anti-labor policies!