What do Mormons Believe? Part II

I think the best way to approach my quest into what I, as a Mormon, really believe, is to start with the Articles of Faith.

The Articles of Faith are thirteen statements compiling the central guiding principles of the Mormon faith, written by Joseph Smith in 1842.

They’re like a Mormon credo, in other words. (p.s. Lots of religions have Articles of Faith, I learned.)

Born-and-raised Mormons learn them from the time they start Sunday School (at the age of three), or, if they have extra-devoted and stalwart parents, at home before they can really even talk.

I was a member of the latter group.

Article of Faith 1:

We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and in His Son, Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost.

The breakdown:

1) We believe in God—no such thing as an atheist Mormon. God, as in God the Father, is the Creator of all things in heaven and on the earth. He is the spiritual Father of every living person on the earth, as well as the literal father of Jesus Christ. (I think God needs an entire post all to Himself, which I should add to the queue.) (Do you think God is offended that he’s in the queue and not on top of it?)

2) …and in His Son, Jesus Christ—Mormons believe in Christ. Mormons are often misunderstood as not being Christian, or somehow anti-Christian. But the definition of Christianity according to my MacBook’s dashboard dictionary is “a religion based on the person and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth, or its beliefs and practices.” Mormons are definitely Christians.

As for me, if the idea of God seems a little abstract, I nevertheless have no problem swallowing that Jesus was a real living human on the earth, and that He was pretty awesome—there is literal recorded evidence of His existence. And if I believe in the teachings of Jesus (which I do), then it only follows that I believe in His Father, God, because Jesus not only believed in God, but also devoted His entire life to spreading the good word about Him. Check and check.

3)…and in the Holy Ghost—we believe that the Holy Ghost exists.

Some religions bunch the Holy Trinity all together into one lump sum: they believe that the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost each play 1/3 a role in (from what I understand) one single, divine entity.

Mormons, on the other hand, believe that the Godhead consists of three separate beings: Heavenly Father, or God, with His own body; Jesus Christ, God’s Son, with His own body; and the Holy Ghost, a body-less spirit (or in more new-agey terms, I guess like an essence) whose main role is to influence people for the better (like the little angel over the shoulder).

But He’s more than just a conscience, though, the Holy Ghost. He can act as a comforter, or bringer of peace, in times of distress. He can manifest as that good feeling you get when you see an amazing act of humanity portrayed in movies (or dare I say even in real life). He can be that nudging feeling you get to steer clear of dangerous situations. Without a body, the possibilities are really endless.

The Holy Ghost, as possibly the most abstract (I mean, without a body and all) member of the Godhead, is often the trickiest guy for people to believe in or understand.

But I believe in the Holy Ghost.

I felt the spiritual influence of the Holy Ghost one time—one single time—in the most clarifying experience of my life.

I will tell you about it sometime. Probably soon.

But for now, and because these churchy posts are liable to get on people’s nerves if they drag on too long, I will leave it at this:

I am a Mormon, and I believe in Heavenly Father, in Jesus, and in the Holy Ghost.

About Camille

I'm Camille. I have a butt-chin. I live in Canada. I was born in Arizona. I like Diet Dr. Pepper. Hello. You can find me on Twitter @archiveslives, Facebook at facebook.com/archivesofourlives, instagram at ArchivesLives, and elsewhere.
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9 Responses to What do Mormons Believe? Part II

  1. Derrick Kellis says:

    Great post, Camille. Concise yet thorough. Could you put more personally next time? I’m being serious about this. You have a unique perspective on how Church culture and doctrine mix, and I’d love to hear more about it. I remember you being charitable and eloquent when speaking about how you feel about the Church.

    Of course, you may disregard my suggestion. Should that be the case, I’ll never read your blog again and ignore you if we ever are in Mesa at the same time again. And I’ll want my wedding present to you guys back.

    Love you!

  2. Derrick Kellis says:

    *Personality. Not personally. Sorry.

  3. chelsie says:

    Nicely Put.

  4. Chloe says:

    I’m not a Mormon, but a Catholic, and I also believe in Heavenly Father, in Jesus, and in the Holy Ghost. :)
    Love these posts.
    Help me learn more about your religion and see all the things and beliefs we share. :)

  5. Lisa says:

    I really like this series of posts. My husband is Episcopalian, my dad and sister are Catholic, and my mom and brother are Lutheran. My parents encouraged me and my siblings to be open-minded (as long as we believed in God and Jesus, though I don’t recall whether they were strongly opinionated about the Holy Spirit). I have realized that I don’t feel strongly towards (or against) one or the other, but instead I tend to believe in certain bits and pieces of each. I’m looking forward to learning more about the Mormon religion and what you believe in. Thanks for sharing!

  6. DeAnna says:

    Great posts! I had a great comment I was typing out and then decided to just write a whole post on it.

  7. Granmama says:

    What a wonderful quest you are on. I honor your soul searching and defining of who you are. It means that your education is really beginning and you are traveling a wonderful journey of self-discovery that will lead you to great happiness.
    Being your mother has brought many nights ( and days) of yearning to connect and to “put” ideas, beliefs and attitudes “into” your soul. I have discovered that you must search out what you are and find it in your own way.
    I loved watching you during the time you were in Belgium because I think it forced you to begin your spiritual journey of self discovery. I support you and stand firm in my own conviction that you are of royal birth and that Heavenly Father loves you as a parent dearly loves their child. My love is always with you and I trust that you will ask for my support.

    Granmama ………to the two cutest little boys in the universe ( I especially am enamored by ‘The Gingerbread Boy’, who is always so joyful)

  8. I didn’t know Mormons believed in the holy ghost – man, we have so much in common! Yet *another* reason we were drawn to be ebffs.

  9. Shesten says:

    I found that I, too, had the hardest time wrapping my head around God and him having a body and what not – of the three of them. And I arrived at and accepted it logically first, much like you did talking your way through it – it only makes sense. Great post.

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