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  • LDS - an abbreviation of "Latter-day Saints" -the church is officially known as "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints", and colloquially as "The Mormon Church". This church of native American origin is a major Christian denomination that is commonly and incorrectly referred to as a cult. It is one of the fastest-growing religions in the USA and abroad, renowned for its native industry and singular focus on traditional family bonds and welfare. The beehive, a historic symbol of the church observed in both artwork and architecture, is a representation of the industrious character of its people. This fact answers the questions that travelers or outsiders express when they wonder why Utah (Church headquarters is located in Salt Lake City) is called "The Beehive State".

    December 31, 2008

  • Well, OED has "a particular form or system of religious worship; esp. in reference to its external rites and ceremonies." So I don't see anything "incorrect" about describing the lds, or any religion, as a cult.

    N.b. see faq for how to delete (repeated) comments.

    December 31, 2008

  • Hi hernesheir!

    Click to edit the comment. Immediately save again (w/o making edits, though it's OK if you do). Now you should see a delete option. Please use it.

    Granted it's not immediately obvious. But it's not that hard to figure out either. Clogging up the front page with multiple copies of the same comment is generally considered undesirable.


    December 31, 2008

  • Hey, awesome tip. I was wondering how to delete multiples. Thanks. : )

    As for cults, most people seem to label a religious/faith-based system as a cult when it has a small membership or seems unorthodox—that being relative, really. I remember trying to dissect the difference between cults and religions in Philosophy 101. There aren't many concrete definitions when it comes to faith.

    December 31, 2008

  • Filed under deleting comments.

    December 31, 2008

  • When I see "LDS," I think of all the microfilms of birth and death records that I used to research my ancestors. Just throwing that out there.

    *wonders why her mental associations with words are so weird*

    December 31, 2008

  • The Mormon Church keeps extensive records on births and deaths. I have no ancestors in the church, but my family used some of their records to research our genealogy. It seems reasonable the LDS on those records refers to group that kept track of them.

    January 2, 2009

  • LDS (which is short for Latter-Day Saints and so is a useful shorthand to refer to the Mormon church) has made microfilmed *copies* of birth and death records from around the world. This is slightly different from keeping the records themselves, which could imply that LDS actually recorded the information or "keeps track" of it. Rather, decades ago they sent members to countless communities around the world to obtain permission to make copies of their vital records. This is because genealogy is theologically significant in the church, and this is also why LDS maintains Family History Centers at many of their churches.

    Fortunately for the rest of us who do genealogical research, the LDS allows non-members to use their facilities, though non-members are subject to restricted hours and pay a fee to borrow microfilms (which cannot in any case be taken out of the Family History Center). Master copies of all of these records are kept in an underground vault in Salt Lake City, and when one borrows a film, one is actually borrowing a copy of the master microfilm or book, that is itself a copy of the originals.

    (If anyone wants more information on this, they can find it here.)

    January 2, 2009