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Religion and Politics

So, before you try what you think is just some new milkshake flavor, here are a couple of rules of thumb: One, if you're in a coffee shop or any other shop that's well-known for its coffee , the drink you're ordering probably has coffee in it, so either never buy drinks at coffee shops or always ask if there's coffee in it," the article said. As coffee shops have become common in the United States, more young church members feel comfortable going to places like Starbucks and drinking iced coffee, said Patrick Mason, a church member and religious scholar who is the Arrington Chair of Mormon History and Culture at Utah State University.

For past generations, just entering coffee shops was considered taboo, he said. The guidance will dash the hopes of some members who hoped the church would loosen the rules about coffee, he said. Starbucks announced recently that it would open its first stand-alone shop in the heavily Mormon city of Provo near the church-owned Brigham Young University next year.

Starbucks does offer some non-coffee drinks, including hot chocolate and lemonade.

Jana Riess, a church member and author, said she was shocked to find that four in 10 active church members under age 51 had drank coffee during the previous six months in a survey she conducted for her book, "The Next Mormons: How Millennials Are Changing the LDS Church.

She also found that younger members are less concerned than older members about obeying the health code, which is one of the ways that makes the religion distinct from many other faiths. Church leaders have occasionally issued similar clarifications based on changing social norms and eating and drinking habits, Mason said.


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In , church leaders clarified that the health code did not prevent members from drinking caffeinated soft drinks. The church declined to say why it decided to issue the new clarifications now.

Brandt Malone, a church member from Detroit who hosts the Mormon News Report podcast, said he wishes the section on coffee would have instead provided guidance to young members about how to order and behave in coffee shops, which are a common place for professional work meetings. Armstrong, having lost in the process almost half of its membership to splinter "armstrongite" groups.

Mormonism - Suffering and the Problem of Evil

On the other hand a recent book by an Evangelical scholar, professor Craig L. Blomberg, and a Mormon scholar, professor Stephen E. Robinson, evidences that something similar to the Adventist-Evangelical private dialogue of the s is now beginning between Evangelicals and Mormons. The book is divided in four parts -- respectively on Scriptures, God, Jesus Christ, and Salvation -- each treated separately by the Evangelical and the Mormon professor, and each ending with a joined conclusion.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

At the end, a final conclusion co-signed by Robinson and Blomberg states, inter alia , that "as applied to contemporary Latter-day Saints, the term 'cult' is technically incorrect" p. Blomberg and Robinson do not hide that major differences exist between Mormons and Evangelicals.

October 2019 General Conference - Saturday Sessions

The two groups have, however, often misrepresented each other and confused core canonical doctrines with popular or folk beliefs. Throughout the book, Robinson insists in disassociating canonical Mormon beliefs from folk doctrines, insisting that the latter -often used by anti-Mormons - are not technically part of the LDS canon or doctrine. He notes that anti-Mormons mine for their own purposes the Journal of Discourses , often mistaken for a canonical or authoritative source for contemporary Mormon doctrine.

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On the other hand, Blomberg admits that in defining Evangelical orthodoxy one could and should distinguish between Biblical truths and Evangelical patterns of interpretation, strictly speaking not found nor grounded in the Bible. Robinson would like for Blomberg to admit that the Nicene and Chalcedonian creeds are extra-biblical. Blomberg maintains that these creeds are not contrary to the Bible and express faithfully what is implicit in the Scripture, although their language is different from the Bible and conditioned by Greek philosophy.

Of course, once Evangelical Christianity is distinguished -- if not separated -- from the Greek philosophical language in which it is normally expressed by the creeds, and Mormonism is separated from a number of non-canonical folk beliefs, the two worldviews appear less irreconcilable.

As professor Robinson notes, "if we would admit that we share a common acceptance of the Bible while rejecting each other's additions to it the councils and creeds on your side and the revelation of Joseph Smith on mine , we would find that we share far more than we dispute. This could serve as a ground for cooperation, dialogue and increased tolerance and respect, though it would still be insufficient grounds for full fellowship. But the frequent assertion of many Evangelicals that Latter-day Saints do not even worship Christ or believe in the Bible is untrue" p.

This could be accepted by some open-minded Evangelical intellectuals if it is confirmed that "Stephen Robinson's disassociation from various popular Mormon views, which are not clearly taught in the Standard Words" is indeed, as Blomberg states, "part of a trend that will catch on widely at the grassroots level as well" p.