Understanding Mormonism

Has it become a mainstream religion?


As the first Mormon to win the Republican Party's nomination for president, Mitt Romney has focused new attention on the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Built in 1830 upon what founder Joseph Smith said was God's word delivered on golden tablets by an angel, the church is deeply rooted in American history. Yet only half of Americans view the faith as Christian despite its regard of Christ as divine. Adding to Mormonism's struggle for acceptance are its legacy of polygamy (disavowed by the church in 1890), its treatment of blacks (banned from the priesthood until 1978) and its treatment of women (still barred from almost all leadership positions). Yet, many scholars say Mormonism has become a mainstream faith, and prominent Americans from Senate ...

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