“Mitt Romney’s speech today focused ostensibly on religious liberty and tolerance, with the direct implication that his Mormon faith should not be an issue for voters. But it is not clear that the political goal for the speech — to woo evangelical Republicans in early primary states — was achieved.” More
Whatever one thinks of his politics, one has to admit that Governor Romney’s Texas speech on “Faith in America,” like Senator Kennedy’s remarks to the Greater Houston Ministerial Association in September 1960, was expertly written and beautifully … More
In 1960 John F. Kennedy gave two major speeches on what he described as the “so-called religious issue” in the presidential campaign. The second, presented to the greater Houston Baptist Ministerial Association in September, after he received … More
Mitt Romney is “attempting to turn concerns about his faith, which seems very sincerely and intensely held, into recognition that the sincerity and intensity of faith is itself a good thing,” says professor Charles Mathewes. More
Polygamy was outlawed by the Mormon Church more than 100 years ago, but it has survived in pockets, largely isolated on the edge of Mormon society and the law. The recent trial and conviction of Warren Jeffs shed some light on the practices of the polygamist group he led, called the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. The Jeffs case has galvanized efforts to rehabilitate children leaving these communities who number anywhere from 600 to 1,000. Correspondent Lucky Severson provides a glimpse into their lives. More
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints — the Mormons — barred African-Americans from full membership until 1978. Since then, the church has increased its outreach to African-American communities, but has yet to repudiate its old teachings that blacks were cursed by God as descendents of Cain or Ham. More
In Utah, people who get licenses to carry concealed weapons can carry them even in church. If a church does not want its worshippers armed, it can either post a “No Guns” notice at the door or register with a state agency as a no-guns site. That has provoked a battle between the gun lobby and the Mormon church, on one side, and several other churches, on the other. More
Many scientists say the most promise for curing various diseases is to clone human embryos to cure the sick. Therapeutic cloning is sharply controversial because it destroys the original human embryo. Reverend William Abernethy suffers from Parkinson's disease and is one of the many hoping to receive medical help through the therapeutic cloning process.