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What are some of the beliefs and rituals of Mormonism?

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Quick Answer

Mormons believe that Jesus Christ is the savior of the world and the son of God. They believe that Jesus died on the cross to redeem humanity from sin and rose on the third day. They perform several ordinances including baptism, holy communion and ordination to higher offices of priesthood. They also engage in feet washing and prayer circles for the dead.

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Full Answer

Mormons believe in the Trinity and refer to it as the Godhead. They see God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit as three separate and distinct beings. They extract their teachings from the Bible, the book of Mormon, the Pearl of Great Price and the Doctrine and Covenants book.

Mormonism teaches that after the death of Jesus and the 12 disciples, the church lost priesthood authority and some important doctrinal teachings, thus necessitating a restoration before the second coming of Jesus. According to the Mormons, the restoration began in 1820 through a series of visions and revelations given to Joseph Smith and other prophets.

Mormons practice baptism by immersion shortly after a child turns eight years old. The church divides priesthood into two parts, the lesser or Aaronic priesthood and the higher or Melchizedek priesthood. Only male members of the church qualify for ordination, which occurs at the age of 12 for Aaronic and 18 for the Melchizedek priesthood.

The church teaches the law of chastity, a moral code for its members to follow in order to have a good standing with the church. The law prohibits adultery, gayism and masturbation. It also teaches that there are three degrees of glory in the heavenly world and to obtain the highest degree each Mormon must participate in each of the church's saving ordinances.

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