News Release from Mormon Newsroom | Photo by Paul J. Richards /AFP/Getty
UPDATE: Tuesday, August 15, 2017
The Church has released the following statement:
It has been called to our attention that there are some among the various pro-white and white supremacy communities who assert that the Church is neutral toward or in support of their views. Nothing could be further from the truth. In the New Testament, Jesus said, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Matthew 22:37-39). The Book of Mormon teaches “all are alike unto God” (2 Nephi 26:33).
White supremacist attitudes are morally wrong and sinful, and we condemn them. Church members who promote or pursue a “white culture” or white supremacy agenda are not in harmony with the teachings of the Church.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released the following statement Sunday, August 13, 2017:
It is with great sadness and deep concern that we view the violence, conflict and tragedy of recent days in Charlottesville, Virginia. People of any faith, or of no faith at all, should be troubled by the increase of intolerance in both words and actions that we see everywhere.
More than a decade ago, the late Church President Gordon B. Hinckley (1910-2008) addressed the topic of racism when speaking to members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He powerfully and clearly taught this principle: “No man who makes disparaging remarks concerning those of another race can consider himself a true disciple of Christ. Nor can he consider himself to be in harmony with the teachings of the Church of Christ.” For members of the Church, we reaffirm that teaching today and the Savior’s admonition to love our neighbor.
Our prayers are with those who are suffering because of this intolerance and hatred. We pray for peace and for understanding. Above all, we pray that we may treat one another with greater kindness, compassion and goodness.
On Friday, members of multiple white supremacist groups gathered to protest the removal of a statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee. On Saturday, the protest and counter-demonstrations turned violent when a man ran his vehicle into a crowd of counter-demonstrators, killing one woman and injuring nine others. The 20-year-old man has been arrested and charged with second-degree murder.