Several weeks ago, I read an article about the Mormon Church in a business magazine. The article focused on the massive net worth of the Mormon Church which was estimated to be around $ 40 Billion. The article, in my view, was designed to make this church look bad and portrayed the church in a negative light. I believe that many of the articles that have appeared in the print media recently about the Mormon Church have been written because Mitt Romney is a Mormon.
I was brought up in the Methodist Church. Family legend holds that my great-grandfather on my mother’s side was expelled from the Baptist Church for the sinful act of attending a square dance. Hence, he told the Methodists that he would mend his sinful ways and became a member of the Methodist Church. My wife and I were married in the Methodist Church so I still feel connected to their teachings in many ways.
When my wife, MaryAnn, and I moved to the Central Florida area I had the opportunity to meet and make new friends. One of my closest friends, Gene, told me that he had a gift for me. The gift was a copy of the BOOK OF MORMON and an invitation to attend the Mormon Church. I read the BOOK OF MORMON and it was an enjoyable read. However, I had to tell Gene truthfully that I could not accept their religious text as an absolute truth the way Mormons do. I have a great deal of respect for my friend, Gene, because he is a man of honesty, decency, and displays integrity in all areas of his life.
I have two other friends who are Mormons. Like Gene, they are honest, hard-working, and individuals of the highest integrity.
While I have not decided whom my presidential choice will be in November, I am certain of one thing. As a Southerner raised in the Methodist Church, I have absolutely no problems or concerns about an American President being of the Mormon faith.
R. Van Conoley