Mormon Excommunication means you are not a member of the religious community anymore. This is a punishment for something the member of the community did and in mormon excommunication there are several reasons for it.The Church of the Latter-day Saints is familiar to have excommunication as a punishment.
Excommunication from the Mormon Church
As a religion, the Latter-day Saints (or Mormons) give a great respect to Jesus Christ, they are also in favor of the family values. Furthermore, they see four books as they guidance: 'The Bible', 'The Book of Mormon', 'The Doctrine and Covenants' and 'The Pearl of Great Price'.
Whenever a member of the Mormon Church does something which he shouldn't do, there will be a process. This Mormon Excommunication Process is divided in a couple of steps, similar to the process we know in our society.
In this process there is a council, consisting of a president and it's two counselors. Depending on the type of council there may be other people present as well, although the bishop or president always have the final say in the mormon excommunication process.
Mormon Excommunication Process
First the council will read the reported misconduct. This is the possibility for the accused now to either deny or admit.
This will be followed by the presentation of the evidence. Either through a witness who states something or a written document this will be presented. The council and the accused now have the room to ask questions. After doing so, the accused can defend itself by telling or showing evidence in favour of him or her. The council can ask questions now as well.
After the showing of evidence the council makes a decision. This decision can be:
- Doing nothing. This is when the accused is spoken free.
- Probation. The council can put the accused on probation, which results in suspension of the right to take the sacrament and enter the temple.
- Disfellowshipped. Still a member of the church, but not longer a member in good standing.
- Excommunication. This means the member is put out of the communion.
In this article we will take a further look on why people are excommunicated.
Mormon Excommunication: Reasons
For the Mormon Excommunication there are of course reasons. To list them:
- Murder. Whenever somebody takes a life, unjustified and deliberate the council has a reason to excommunicate a member. There are of course exceptions, for instance when a police officer or soldier kills somebody, as this is probably not unjustified.
- Apostasy. Claiming that you are speaking Church doctrine while you aren't is a reason for excommunication as well. But apostasy includes more, as acting in public in opposition to the Church or its leaders.
- Incest. There is a common misconception the Latter-day Saints accept incest. This is actually a reason for excommunication. This means a sexual relationship between siblings, or between a parent and a child, also when the child is adopted or a stepchild.
- Plural marriage. Another misconception is the acceptance of the plural marriage. This is also something where a member of the Mormon Church can be excommunicated for.
- Serious transgression while holding a prominent position. Offenses against morality, attempted murder, rape, sexual abuse and lots of other crimes fall under transgression. Serious transgression is a big reason for excommunication as well. This also includes when there are patterns of transgression or if the serious transgression is widely known as this harms the image of the Church.
As you can see, there are a lot of Mormon Excommunication Reasons. And the process isn't just done without any thought as you can see with the Mormon Excommunication Process.