Mormon Quotes

Baptism for the dead

Brigham Young
When all the other children of Adam have had the privilege of receiving the priesthood and of coming into the Kingdom of God and of being redeemed from the four quarters of the earth, and have received their resurrection from the dead, then it will be time enough to remove the curse from Cain and his posterity.
Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 2:142 (JournalOfDiscourses.com)
Brigham Young
This doctrine of baptism for the dead is a great doctrine, one of the most glorious doctrines that was ever revealed to the human family; and there are light, power, glory, honor and immortality in it.
Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 16:167 (JournalOfDiscourses.com)
Brigham Young
When Joseph received the revelation that we have in our possession concerning the [baptism of the] dead, the subject was opened to him, not in full but in part... Then women were baptized for men and men for women, & c.
Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 16:165 (JournalOfDiscourses.com)
Joseph Smith
The greatest responsibility in this world that God has laid upon us is to seek after our dead.
Joseph Smith, Prophet Joseph Smith, Jr., Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, Chapter 9, p. 356
Joseph Smith
A man may act as proxy for his own relatives; the ordinances of the Gospel which were laid out before the foundations of the world have thus been fulfilled by them, and we may be baptized for those whom we have much friendship for; but it must first be revealed to the man of God, lest we should run too far.
Joseph Smith, History of the Church, 6:366
Joseph Smith
The greatest responsibility in this world that God has laid upon us, is to seek after our dead...They without us cannot be made perfect.
Joseph Smith, Times and Seasons 5:616; Discourses of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 147; History of the Church 6:313
Wilford Woodruff
I straightway went into the baptismal font and called upon Brother McCallister to baptize me for the signers of the Declaration of Independence, and fifty other eminent men, making one hundred in all, including John Wesley, Columbus, and others; I then baptized him for every President of the United States, except three; and when their cause is just, somebody will do the work for them.
Wilford Woodruff, Journal of Discourses 19:229 (JournalOfDiscourses.com)
Wilford Woodruff
I will here say, before closing, that two weeks before I left St. George, the spirits of the dead gathered around me, wanting to know why we did not redeem them. Said they, "You have had the use of the Endowment House for a number of years, and yet nothing has ever been done for us. We laid the foundation of the government you now enjoy, and we never apostatized from it, but we remained true to it and were faithful to God." There were the signers of the Declaration of Independence, and they waited on me for two days and two nights. I thought it very singular, that notwithstanding so much work had been done, and yet nothing had been done for them. The thought never entered my heart, from the fact, I suppose, that heretofore our minds were reaching after our more immediate friends and relatives. I straightway went into the baptismal font and called upon brother McCallister to baptize me for the signers of the Declaration of Independence, and fifty other eminent men, making one hundred in all, including John Wesley, Columbus, and others; I then baptized him for every President of the United States, except three; and when their cause is just, somebody will do the work for them.
Wilford Woodruff, Journal of Discourses 19:229 (JournalOfDiscourses.com)
Melvin J. Ballard
Any man or woman who has heard the Gospel and rejected it — not only those in the days of Noah, but any man or woman in this day who has had a good chance to receive and embrace the Gospel and enjoy its blessings and privileges, but who has been indifferent to these things, ignoring and neglecting them — such a person need not hope or anticipate that when he is dead the work can be done for him and he can gain celestial glory. Don't you Latter‑day Saints get the notion that a man can live in defiance or total indifference, having had a good chance — not just a casual chance or opportunity — to accept the Gospel and that when he dies you can go and do the work for him and have him receive every blessing that the faithful ones are entitled to.
Melvin J. Ballard, Crusader for Righteousness, p. 221
Dallin H. Oaks
Some persons have a finely developed social conscience. They respond to social injustice and suffering with great concern, commitment, and generosity. This is surely a spiritual strength, something many of us need in greater measure. Yet persons who have this great quality need to be cautious that it not impel them to overstep other ultimate values. My social conscience should not cause me to coerce others to use their time or means to fulfill my objectives. We are not blessed for magnifying our calling with someone else's time or resources. We are commanded to love our neighbors, not to manipulate them, even for righteous purposes. In the same way, we should not feel alienated from our church or its leaders when they refrain from using the rhetoric of the social gospel or from allocating Church resources to purposes favored by others. We should remember that the Lord has given his restored Church a unique mission not given to others. We must concentrate our primary efforts on those activities that can only be accomplished with priesthood authority, such as preaching the gospel and redeeming the dead.
Dallin H. Oaks, BYU Fireside, "Our Strengths Can Become Our Downfall", June 07, 1992
Daniel C. Peterson
I'm not sure why some Jews appear to be offended by Mormon temple service on behalf of Jews. Jews have precious few friends around the world. They should not be seeking to alienate Mormons, who are deeply philosemitic.
Daniel C. Peterson, Mormon Discussions; March 15, 2011
Daniel C. Peterson
I would guess that barring baptisms for the dead would have to be part of a broader strategy that would forbid masses for the dead, prayers for the dead, invoking the memory of the dead, and, perhaps, thinking of the dead altogether.
Daniel C. Peterson, Mormon Dialogue
Daniel C. Peterson
I hope that Jews, of all people, will be very careful not to entertain the kind of religious hatred and bigotry that some will undoubtedly attempt to inflame over this issue.
Daniel C. Peterson, "Anger over 'baptism' of Simon Wiesenthal"
Daniel C. Peterson
Many Jews in general are troubled by the notion of proselytizing. I remember speaking with a rabbi in Jerusalem, very nice guy, who said to me simply that to convert a Jew is the equivalent of killing a Jew, especially because Judaism has been so threatened, obviously particularly in the 20th century. I understand the sensitivities on that score. In terms of Holocaust victims in particular, there's the sense that they died ‑‑ whether they were religious or not ‑‑ they died for being Jewish. So to take people who are in effect martyred for their Jewishness and then be baptized as Christians posthumously really offends a lot of Jewish sensibilities. That I understand. I think the church has tried to be sensitive on this, but we are caught on this doctrine. And the doctrine is this: Ultimately anyone who is saved must be saved through Christ, and that means at some point explicitly acknowledging Christ and accepting baptism. And that goes for everybody who has ever lived. So in a sense we're not theologically free to say to anyone, including Jews, that we just won't do this, and in our viewpoint, in fact, at the end of time, people would say thank you for this. But in the meantime, I understand the offensiveness of it, and it's a very, very troubling thing, and we go out of our way, particularly the church in the 20th and 21st centuries, to be religiously sensitive, and we're genuine about it. There's genuine friendship between the church and Jews and Catholics, and in a certain level Muslims. We've been cultivating those ties, so we don't want to be seen as people who trample on other people's religious sensibilities, especially since it's been done to us quite a bit.
Daniel C. Peterson, PBS, The Mormons
Richard Ostling
This practice [baptism for the dead] is especially offensive to Jews. A highly sensitive vicarious baptism issue erupted publicly in the mid‑1990s when baptism for Jewish victims of the Holocaust — some 380,000 of them — created an angry backlash from the American Gathering of Jewish Holocaust Survivors. The names had all been submitted by nine zealous Mormons who had visited concentration camps and Holocaust museums in Europe. The situation surfaced when Ernest Michel, a founding member of the survivors' organization, discovered in the genealogical library that his parents, both of whom died at Auschwitz, had been given Mormon baptisms. In 1995, after a year of negotiations, the church agreed to remove all such names and to refrain from baptizing deceased Jews unless they were ancestors of living LDS Church members or the church had written permission from all living members of the person's family.
Richard Ostling, Richard and Joan Ostling, Mormon America, pp. 189‑190, see "Church to Stop Baptizing Holocaust Victims," Sunstone, 18:3, no. 100, December 1995
Bill Maher
So by the power granted to me by the Blair Witch, schlemiel schlimazel, e plurbis mumbo jumbo, expecto patronum, sussussudio, yo momma... I call upon the Mormon spirits to leave your body the fuck alone. Brother Edward, in this world you had to put up with Mitt Romney, you've suffered enough!
Bill Maher, Un‑baptising Mitt Romney's father‑in‑law, who was baptised for the dead
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