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George Henderson wrote:

Hi, guys —

  • Are Mormons Christians?

George

  { Are Mormons Christians? }

Paul replied:

Dear George,

From what I understand, Mormons believe they are Christian, but most Christians do not consider them Christian.

That is because they do not hold the most basic tenets of Christianity, that is Jesus' divinity and that He is one Person of the eternal Blessed Trinity.

Paul

Mike replied:

Hi George,

Thanks for the question.

To add to what Paul has said, in essence, No they are not, because they do not practice a valid Trinitarian baptism, the one Jesus instituted before ascending into Heaven, which can be traced back to St. Cyprian of Carthage in 200 A.D. and obviously earlier.

Nevertheless, I'm personally amazed at the great examples of Christian virtues they exhibit with the actual grace they have been given. Actual grace refers to God's interventions, whether at the beginning of a conversion or in the course of the work of sanctification. The preparation of man for the reception of grace is already a work of grace. (CCC 2000-2001)

If a Mormon did die, yet knew the necessity of baptism, and desired it, they would have been baptized by desire. The Catechism tells us:

1260 "Since Christ died for all, and since all men are in fact called to one and the same destiny, which is divine, we must hold that the Holy Spirit offers to all the possibility of being made partakers, in a way known to God, of the Paschal mystery." (Vatican II, Gaudium et spes 22 § 5; cf. Lumen Gentium 16; Ad Gentes 7) Every man who is ignorant of the Gospel of Christ and of his Church, but seeks the truth and does the will of God in accordance with his understanding of it, can be saved. It may be supposed that such persons would have desired Baptism explicitly if they had known its necessity.

I personally hope and prayer that the future is one where Catholics and Mormons can come together in shared Christian values and practices, despite our grave theological differences.

I hope this helps,

Mike

George replied:

Thanks Mike,

It does. That is what I understood but I've been hearing other's saying something different.

Their strong connection to polygamy scares me.

George

Mike replied:

Hi George,

It concerns me too but can't speak for what is individual behavior apart from official Mormon teaching, and even if it is official Mormon teaching, it just gives us an area where we can witness to the blessings of monogamous, Catholic, sacramental marriage.

Mike

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