Erasing Mormon & Moroni

The Mormon Church lacks neither personnel nor finances for the Hill Cumorah Pageant, so why discontinue it after 83 years? And why let the Monument become overgrown so it’s no longer visible from the road? And why eliminate the former support for the Book of Mormon at BYU? Why remove “Mormon” from the “Mormon Tabernacle Choir” after 150 years? The removal of Moroni from temples (current and future) is not coincidental. What do they all have in common? President Nelson

Hill Cumorah Pageant Logo
Hill Cumorah Pageant Logo


Why the ‘Mormon’ church changed its name (It’s about revelation, not rebranding) – CNN

When the messages come during the dark of night, Russell M. Nelson reaches for his lighted pen and takes dictation from the Lord. “OK dear, it’s happening,” the president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints tells his wife, Wendy Nelson. “I just remain quiet and soon he’s sitting up at the side of the bed, writing,” she said in a recent church video.

Sometimes the spirit prompts the prophet’s wife to leave the bed, though she’d rather sleep. One such morning, Wendy Nelson told Mormon leaders, her husband emerged from the bedroom waving a yellow notebook.

“Wendy, you won’t believe what’s been happening for two hours,” she recalled Russell Nelson saying. “The Lord has given me detailed instructions on a process I am to follow.”

Nelson’s nighttime messages have “increased exponentially,” his wife said, since last year when the 94-year-old took the helm of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, widely known as the Mormon church. “One of the things the Spirit has repeatedly impressed upon my mind since my new calling as President of the Church,” Nelson said, “is how willing the Lord is to reveal His mind and will.”

Last year, Nelson announced that God had told him the church should drop the moniker “Mormon,” a nickname that has stuck since the 1800s. “The Lord impressed upon my mind the importance of the name He decreed for his church,” Nelson said, “the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.” The church has changed its websites, social media accounts, email addresses, even the name of its famous “Mormon” Tabernacle Choir based on Nelson’s revelation.

Since taking office in 2018, Nelson has instituted a number of changes, including: cutting an hour from Sunday church meetings, modifying home ministry programs, consolidating levels of church leadership, eliminating historical pageants, announcing a new edition of Mormon hymns, revising guidelines for bishops who counsel young adults, allowing missionaries to contact their families more often and ending the church’s 100-year association with the Boy Scouts.

Nelson has been forceful in his rejection of the “Mormon” nickname, saying it offends God and represents “a major victory for Satan.” He made a similar argument in 1990, when he was a church leader, but was apparently rebuffed by superiors. Asked about the apparent contradiction – why would previous Mormon prophets reject what is now apparently God’s will? – church spokesman Eric Hawkins said the church has a saying: The most important prophet is the living one.

(Daniel Burke, “Why the ‘Mormon’ church changed its name. (It’s about revelation, not rebranding.),” CNN, March 24, 2019)