How, exactly, do LDS view the Blessed Virgin Mary? I’m reading a book by a Mormon woman who threw out statues of Mary that were left by previous owners of the house her family purchased. It almost seems like they were offensive to her, though she never states this directly. I understand that the statues may be seen as Catholic and that in and of itself may be offensive. But just how *do *the LDS view Our Lady? What’s her role, if any, in their faith?
Well, as the Joseph’s mythos goes, we are all Spirit Children of the Mormon God, who
himself was once a man like us but became God and begot us through his many wives.
Now it is said that our Spirit Brother Jesus needed a body to fulfill his purpose, whatever
that is in Mormonism, so the Mormon God came down to have sex with the Virgin Mary.
Keeping in mind about that “Premortal Existence”, that we were all spirit children, uh…
Mormon God got it on with his spirit daughter, a little disturbing, the LDS have no re-
deeming doctrine behind that, try as they might:
"The fleshly body of Jesus required a Mother as well as a Father. Therefore, the Father and Mother of Jesus,
according to the flesh, must have been associated in the capacity of husband and wife; hence the Virgin Mary
must have been, for the time being, the lawful wife of God the Father: we use the term lawful wife, because it
would be blasphemous in the highest degree to say that He overshadowed her or begat the Savior unlawfully…
He had a lawful right to overshadow the Virgin Mary IN THE CAPACITY OF A HUSBAND, and beget a Son…
Whether God the Father gave Mary to Joseph for time only, or for time and etern-
ity, we are not informed. It may be that He only gave her to be the wife of Joseph
while in this mortal state, and that He intended after the resurrection to again take
her as one of his own wives to raise up immortal spirits in eternity."
Apostle Orson Pratt, “The Seer,” Oct. 1853, p. 158).
So there ya go! :eek:
Most young LDS don’t believe that. It was taught as doctrine when I was LDS and most members accepted it. Several young men I knew at BYU were fond of saying that Mary was merely “Heavenly Father’s brood mare” and that when he done “overshadowing her” he gave her to Joseph.
The Mormons somehow got the idea (probably from Joseph Smith) that to overshadow someone means to cast a shadow on her because you are on top of her. What they don’t understand is that to be overshadowed means to be possessed or in-dwelt. Certain animists still use the term in that sense today.
The only LDS on this forum who have admitted belief that Heavenly Father had sex with the BVM are my age - 60 - or older. Since about 1990 the LDS leadership has vigorously back peddled away from this teaching; so much so that most young LDS have never heard of it.
Paul (formerly LDS, now happily Catholic)
Actually many mormons may not be aware of that particular piece of their theology. But they don’t seem to have any feelings about her, when I was LDS she was never mentioned in any other context than just being a vessell that served a purpose. She is not honoured or venerated, but then mormonism is very male orientated, with their view of heaven as being a god with a harem and constsntly procreating. Though how fleshly gods bring forth spirit children is a mystery to . She like mormon women don’t count for much.
I stopped attending the LDS church back in the very early 90’s, when I was about 16 and can say I never heard it put like this when growing up. Like what lynnettejane says, she was more of a vessel, she was obviously a good worthy woman, but she wasn’t as important as her Son.
That is a disgusting objectification of a woman, any woman. That she is some thing to passed by a man to another man. Although that is exactly how women like Zina were treated you’d thing they’d be a bit more circumspect in their attitude toward Christs’ mother.
I think that the LDS’ conception of the Virgin Mary can be found in this painting. It is the first painting shown. It is a nice and respectful portrait of the VIrgin Mary. Also interesting are the other paintings of biblical women of the New Testament:
I was taught by a seminary teacher that God the Father had sex with Mary to conceive Jesus. This was in the mid-90’s. I was disturbed. I have not heard that doctrine in any official capacity since. Mormons do believe that Joseph had sex with Mary after the birth of Jesus so she did not stay a virgin. Although, Mary is considered special as the mother of Jesus she is otherwise not honored. To Mormons she is not the Queen of Heaven and doesn’t really deserve special reverence or consideration. She is really an after thought which is really sad. They also believe that praying to Mary (and other saints) is wrong. Mormons only prayer to God the Father in the name of Jesus Christ. They have a greater reverence for Eve than for Mary as she brought about the Fall whereby everyone could come to earth and receive a body.
So then what is taught now?
Nothing officially as far as I know. It’s just not talked about anymore. Before I heard the doctrine that HF had sex with Mary, I thought Jesus was conceived by IVF, artificial insemination or something like that. I would guess that since these techniques have existed for a while, younger Mormons just assume Jesus was conceived in a similar manner.
Mormons mention Mary during the secular Christmas season as an ordinary woman who was given an extraordinary job. Other than that, she is ignored.
Women are objects in Mormonism, like a stapler, existing to perform a function. Stepping outside of that function is to go against the Mormon God.
That was my experience.
She for the most part is ignored. Something of a brief footnote or side not, but no real focus.
What I was taught about Christ’s conception is that is was a higher form of conception.
(80’s to early 90’)
I have no idea what is taught now, if anything is taught.
My experience was different fro Paul’s
For the most part, what I experienced, is that she was ignored
What I was taught, is that the Holy Ghost overshadowed Mary so that she could be in the presence of the Father and live. This was so intercourse could occur. :eek:
This was in the 1970’s, seminary and Sunday school.
We’ve had LDS on this forum say Jesus conception was via a divine method of artificial insemination. Also, :eek:.
There is no cohesive teaching on this if one looks to the 20th century, as its true for many of their teachings…
What the phrase, LDS doctrine changes so much it’s like trying to nail jello to a wall.
LDS teaching on Christ conception would fall under that kind of description, IMO
HA! I like that metaphor!
In the end, Mormons believe a miracle is something that can be explained, given the right knowledge. Their God has more knowledge, so can do cooler stuff than we can. So, the doctrine didn’t change, knowledge increased, and obviously, artificial insemination is a greater knowledge. Science makes us more godlike all the time!
This is not the definition of miracle, or what it means to be Godlike, for Catholics.