Is it better to be a good Mormon than a bad Catholic?

Our parish priest recently gave a homily in which he indicated that he was the only practicing Catholic among his siblings. Some became Mormon. This used to bother him until he decided it was better to be a “good” Mormon than to be a “bad” Catholic. This didn’t sound right to me, as even a “bad” Catholic has access to the truths of divine revelation and the sacraments of holy Communion and confession to help him/her become a “better” Catholic.

Do you have any advice on how to approach him about his comments, or even if I should approach him? I feel somewhat embarrassed as I don’t what to sound like I know better than him, but sometimes his comments make me cringe! Thanks for any advice you can give me.

While we can hope that your priest was trying to find a way to accept the fact of his siblings’ defection from the Church, his statement is extremely problematic because it demonstrates ignorance of the severity of the gulf between Catholicism and Mormonism.

Mormonism is not a Protestant “brand” of Christianity; it is, in effect, the rejection of Christianity disguised with Christian terminology. Mormonism believes in many gods, it believes that a man can become a god (which is, incidentally, the devil’s first suggestion to Adam and Eve
[cf. **Gen. 3:4-5]), and it has many other beliefs that are entirely incompatible with Christianity. For more information, I recommend the articles and books listed below.

Gently point out to your priest that he cannot hope to help his family understand truth – which ultimately points us to Jesus Christ, who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life – unless he is willing to understand what Mormonism is and help his family to understand that they have accepted a non-Christian religion. Indeed, some have argued that Christian converts to Mormonism have accepted an apostate religion. As a brother, and as a priest, he must be willing to explain to them the seriousness of what they have done. And, even if he is unwilling to do that, he should at least refrain from appearing to make Mormonism seem preferable to Catholicism to his own congregation.

**Recommended reading:

Non-Catholic Groups** (scroll to sub-head “Non-Christian”)
Inside Mormonism by Isaiah Bennett
When Mormons Call by Isaiah Bennett
Search and Rescue by Patrick Madrid

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