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Posted by: steve benson ( )
Date: February 18, 2012 08:29PM

He also claims that the Mormon church never promised to stop dead-dunking Nazi-exterminated Jews--and, further, insists that necro-dunking murdered Jewish Holocaust victims is just fine:

"Posthumous Baptisms of Holocaust Victims

"An article has appeared on 'The Daily Beast' (and may perhaps yet appear in its printed companion, 'Newsweek'), about vicarious Latter-day Saint baptisms for Jewish Holocaust survivors, a controversial topic that has arisen yet again.

"I was interviewed for the article. . . .

“'But despite more than two decades of negotiations and agreements between the two groups to prevent such baptisms of dead Jews,' reporter Allison Yarrow writes, 'the practice persists. . . . Jewish and Mormon leaders first devised a pact to stop all baptisms of dead Jews in 1995, but soon after, Radkey made public that the church had reneged.'

"No. No. No. NO. NO!

"The Church has never promised to stop baptisms of 'dead Jews.' Jewish members of the Church have just as much right to perform vicarious work for their ancestors and family members as do other members of the Church.

"The Church agreed to try to prevent people from submitting names culled from unapproved extraction sources (e.g., as New Family Search explicitly mentions, from lists of 'Jewish Holocaust victims') for vicarious temple ordinances. The Church also strongly discourages whimsical submissions of the names of unrelated celebrities, and tells members of the Church to concentrate on their own ancestral lines.

"If, however, those ancestral lines include deceased Jews, even if those deceased Jews were Holocaust victims, the names of these deceased Jews are entirely legitimate for submission to the temples.

"(My take on it: The abstraction 'the Jewish people' does not have a greater claim on deceased Jews than those Jews’ own flesh and blood families do.)

"[Author of the 'Daily Beast' article] Ms. Yarrow and I discussed this, explicitly.

"I can’t imagine how my explanation could have been any clearer than it was.

“'But LDS leaders continue to make promises to Jewish leaders that they do not keep.'

"I do not believe this to be even remotely true. I think the leaders of the Church have made serious, good faith efforts to meet Jewish concerns, even though I’ll frankly admit—and frankly admitted to Miss Yarrow—that I’m somewhat puzzled by those concerns.

"From an outsider’s unbelieving perspective, all we’re doing is quietly mentioning a dead person’s name in connection with a few other words, and then plunging somebody else into a water tank located in a very private place. It takes approximately half a minute. I find it extremely difficult to see how the practice really harms anybody, if one assumes that it has no effect on the dead. And one can only assume that it has actual effect on the dead if one assumes that Mormon beliefs are true, that Mormon priesthood authority is efficacious in the next life, and that Mormon temple rituals are divinely ordained. In which case, again, it’s difficult to see how offering the gift of vicarious baptism actually hurts anybody.

"Those for whom such baptisms have been performed are not listed on our membership rolls. We don’t presume that they’ve accepted the ordinance performed on their behalf. And we don’t specifically target Jews, let alone Holocaust victims.

“'the mistaken request for a baptism of the very-much-alive writer, Elie Wiesel'

"I’m not altogether sure that there was actually a 'request for baptism' for Mr. Wiesel (whose writing, by the way, I find extraordinarily powerful). And, if there was, it was clearly improper and illegitimate; neither Church procedures nor Mormon theology permit the vicarious baptism of a living person.

“'Regular checks of Family Search by a researcher who has been called the ‘Erin Brockovich of posthumous genealogy,' Helen Radkey, revealed the baptisms of the Wiesenthals and the alleged targeting of Wiesel. Also a disaffected Mormon, Radkey . . .'

"I admit to a sneaking suspicion that at least some of this is the work of one or more agents provocateurs. With many, many thousands of people submitting millions of names, I can’t help but wonder whether a critic or two aren’t setting us up. It’s especially curious, to me at least, that, when a potentially inflammatory name shows up in the records—a needle in a vast haystack—Helen Radkey is almost always immediately in touch with the Associated Press, the New York Times, and, well, The Daily Beast/Newsweek.

"Call me paranoid. . . ."

("Posthumous Baptisms of Holocaust Victims," posted by Daniel C. Peterson, under "Sic et Non," 15 February 2012, at: http://dcpsicetnon.blogspot.com/2012/02/posthumous-baptisms-of-holocaust.html; for another link to Peterson's blog article, with additional Mormon defenses of the Mormon church's dead-dunking rituals, see "Why Do Mormons Baptize Dead People?," on "Well-Behaved Mormon Woman," at: http://wellbehavedmormonwoman.blogspot.com/2012/02/why-do-mormons-baptize-dead-people.html)



Edited 16 time(s). Last edit at 02/18/2012 09:18PM by steve benson.

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Posted by: Rebeckah ( )
Date: February 18, 2012 08:36PM

Full name and dates of birth and death please. I have a ritual I need to perform and it clearly won't bother him in the least.

"From an outsider’s unbelieving perspective, all we’re doing is quietly mentioning a dead person’s name in connection with a few other words, and then engaging in mind blowing sexual activity on an altar located in a very private place. It takes approximately half a minute (or maybe half an hour, what do I know?). I find it extremely difficult to see how the practice really harms anybody, if one assumes that it has no effect on the dead. And one can only assume that it has actual effect on the dead if one assumes that my beliefs are true, that my priesthood authority is efficacious in the next life, and that my temple rituals are divinely ordained. In which case, again, it’s difficult to see how offering the gift of vicarious adultery actually hurts anybody."



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/18/2012 08:36PM by Rebeckah.

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Posted by: matt ( )
Date: February 18, 2012 08:37PM

OK, Daniel, I'll call you paranoid. How about, also calling you bombastic, egotistical, unpleasant and sarcastic, too?

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Posted by: Rebeckah ( )
Date: February 18, 2012 08:39PM


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Posted by: thingsithink ( )
Date: February 18, 2012 09:07PM

and boring.

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Posted by: thingsithink ( )
Date: February 18, 2012 09:33PM

Peterson is boring. Truly boring.

Benson is enlightening and hysterically entertaining. His bylines alone give me a great laugh most every day!

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Posted by: steve benson ( )
Date: February 18, 2012 09:57PM


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Posted by: Nightingale ( )
Date: February 18, 2012 10:00PM

I agree. The topics are riveting and the info enlightening and the writing mighty fine.

And I love to see apologists getting all bent out of shape over stuff exmos say. Especially as it's true. They can't argue with facts, can they? :)



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/18/2012 10:01PM by Nightingale.

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Posted by: amos2 ( )
Date: February 18, 2012 10:07PM

?

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Posted by: Nightingale ( )
Date: February 18, 2012 10:15PM

Good point!

And note how DCP changes the goal posts - who is objecting to Jewish members (if any???) "doing the work" for their own family members? The argument is about non-relatives using Jewish names to do their temple busy-work.

My opinion about family members who happen to be Mormon who choose to dead-dunk relatives is that if they know the relatives didn't request it or didn't want it done, they should respect the person's wishes.

The fact that they do it anyway, regardless of the wishes of the deceased, of whichever ethnicity, illustrates my point that Mormons can't seem to accept "no" as an answer. You don't do it anyway, when you know or can assume that the deceased didn't want it. I can assume, with a high chance of being correct, that most, if not all, Jewish people would prefer to be kept out of Mormon temple rituals, no matter how short they are or what Mormons believe in.

In short, it's not about Mormons!

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Posted by: honestone ( )
Date: February 19, 2012 11:22AM

Your paragraph beginning "My opinion about" it spot on. What is important is respecting people who cherish their own religious upbringing and that of relatives. NO Mormon should say "But I am doing a good thing." SAYS WHO??? Idiots!



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/19/2012 11:24AM by honestone.

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Posted by: Don Bagley ( )
Date: February 18, 2012 10:14PM

I was raised Mormon, so how can I comment on this issue? I'm supposed to think that necro-baptism is either wonderful or, at worst, neutral. I definitely feel that it's stupid and maudlin. Maybe it offends someone whose relative is being named in a tub of dirty water. Maybe it reeks of ignorant superstition. Who am I to say?

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Posted by: Makurosu ( )
Date: February 18, 2012 10:55PM

Like this one:

http://tracingthetribe.blogspot.com/2006/12/anger-over-baptism-of-simon-wiesenthal.html

"To Rabbi Hier's remark that "It is sacrilegious for the Mormon faith to desecrate [Simon Wiesenthal's] memory by suggesting that Jews on their own are not worthy enough to receive G-ds’ eternal blessing," I would respond that we Latter-day Saints do, quite unapologetically, insist that Jews "are not worthy enough to receive G-d's eternal blessing" "on their own."

"It's a fundamental Christian belief that nobody is."


Or this one:

"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."


Or this one:

"I'm reminded of a story that I was told many years ago, about Joseph Fielding Smith, a Mormon apostle who ultimately served in the early 1970s as the overall president of the Church, and who was anything but an ecumenist or a theological liberal.

"It seems, if the story is true, that his daughter went to Holy Cross Hospital (a Roman Catholic institution) in Salt Lake City to have a baby. There were complications, and it was feared for a short time that the baby might die. So, as good Catholics are wont to do in such cases, the nurses baptized the baby.

"Elder Smith's daughter was very upset when she eventually learned of the baptism, and expressed her concern to her father.

""Don't worry, dear," he chuckled. "It'll wash off.""

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Posted by: JoD3:360 ( )
Date: February 19, 2012 11:12AM

Isn't it curious that it's only the guilty parties who are angry that their actions are made known?

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Posted by: dagny ( )
Date: February 27, 2012 01:18PM

Enemies of Mormonism = anyone who points out the obvious about Mormonism.


What I find hilarious is that Mormons pride themselves on being record keepers. Yet they just can't seem to track how all these names keep getting on the lists over and over.

It's obvious to me that the whole point of it all is to engage the members doing the temple work so they think they are doing work for important people. (Wow, Anne Frank is going to open her arms to me in heaven to thank me!) They must generate busy work for the members to keep them doing the rituals- and it really doesn't matter what John Does they pick.

They never intended for the members or outsiders to investigate what they are doing and question the redundancy of it all.

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Posted by: helamonster ( )
Date: February 27, 2012 01:33PM

Prove it.

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Posted by: NormaRae ( )
Date: February 27, 2012 06:23PM

My guess is ZERO!

MAYBE one or two. But they've processed thousands of Jewish names.

So NO, Danny Boy, it's not about members being able to do the work of their OWN relatives. Stop ALL Jewish dead-conversions and if there are a few who come across a direct ancestor who is Jewish and they can prove it, then have a process for them to submit that name, with proof, and do it on the sly!

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Posted by: JoD3:360 ( )
Date: February 27, 2012 06:37PM

Perhaps they should call DCP for clarification.

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