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Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Church) believe their families are their most important possessions, and that they should do all they can to create righteous and happy families. Prophet David O. McKay said, "No other success can compensate for failure in the home."
The Proclamation to the World on the family, issued by the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, teaches several important truths regarding the centrality of the family and its eternal destiny. These truths are centered on the concepts of the Plan of Salvation: Before we came to the earth, we lived with our Heavenly Parents in a pre-mortal world with a Heavenly Father and Mother who, Church members believe, are the parents of our spirits. There we prepared to come to earth in the time established by the Lord. Our heavenly home was a sacred place where we were able to progress and develop. However, we all knew that in order to further develop we needed to come to Earth to obtain a physical body and be tested.
Jesus Christ, under the direction of our Heavenly Father, created the earth to be our mortal home. In this physical world our first parents (Adam and Eve) received the commandment to multiply and replenish the earth. The same commandment is given to all men and women, but special rules apply to using the power of procreation. Men and women need to be legally married to be able to use the sacred powers of procreation in the way that is acceptable to the Lord. Mormonism declares the supreme importance of eternal marriage, a marriage that is performed only in sacred places called temples. According to the doctrine of Mormonism, only when we are married for time and all eternity in a sacred temple, and we live faithful to God's commandments until the end of our lives, are we entitled to receive the special privilege of living with God the Father and Jesus Christ in the highest level of Celestial glory in their Kingdom.
When husband and wife fulfill their obligations as righteous spouses and parents, they will find joy and the Lord will bless them.
Mormons devote their best efforts to creating homes where their children can properly grow and develop, preparing for the challenges of life and learning to rely on the promises of the Lord to all the faithful.
Mormons believe that their families can be eternal. This means that if they live righteously and according to the covenants made in the temple, they can live with their families forever, even after this life. Since the blessings associated with eternal families are so glorious, it's easy to understand why Mormons are so concerned about their families. They want their earthly homes to be places that allow further progression of their children, who are nothing less than children of God.
The leadership of the Church stresses the following as components of a successful family life:
- Continual emphasis on Christ—through family and individual prayer, scripture reading, and Family Home Evening
- Instruction for children through teaching and example, emphasizing moral cleanliness and honesty
- Self-reliance and a good work ethic
- An emphasis on education and the magnifying of talents
- Charitable service to others
- Wholesome recreation
Friends of other faiths need not assume that Mormon families aren't enjoying themselves. Fun is an integral part of family life, and indeed, Mormon culture.
Facts about Mormon Families
Families are central to Mormon doctrine. Mormons believe that marriages can last forever, not just until death. These kind of eternal marriages are called sealings. Statistically, of all the United States, Utah is...
- First in children with two parents
- First in birth rate and family size.
- First in number of married couples.
LDS Couples that marry in Mormon temples have the lowest divorce rate "among all U.S. social and religious groups studied." The divorce rate is 5.4% for men and 6.5% for women.
For sources, see AllAboutMormons.com