"I for one am neither surprised nor the slightest bit dismayed by my political antithesis's re-election. We know what leads to the final 'passing of the torch' and this just hastens the day and solidifies the resolve and preparation of those who are already well entrenched."
"It is completely disenchanting to hear so many people of the same faith in me post such hateful, extremist, end of the world, life, liberty and happiness comments. If you are a true follower of Christ and of the LDS faith you should have hope in your own life-knowing that YOU determine your own happiness. Civility and compromise are qualities that we should all exemplify."
These quotes showed up in my Facebook feed this morning – both of the authors are Mormons that I grew up with. Post-election day is always a let-down; people win and people lose. Some people are happy, some people are sad, some people get angry. This particular election was historic; Mitt Romney was the first Mormon presidential candidate of a major political party. Romney’s candidacy sparked an interest in Mormonism that I have never seen before; this election season has been a roller coaster of emotions, as I have watched the media cover the issues that had such a profound impact on my life.
As a child, I sat through many lessons about the Second Coming of Christ. One teacher taught us that two missionaries would be shot in Jerusalem and that their bodies would lie in the streets for the period of three days. Another teacher told me that the Saints would gather in Missouri and that there would be a period of intense natural disasters. Families were commanded to store a year’s supply of food, in preparation for hard times and famine. After the Second Coming, after all of the chaos and terror, we were taught that Christ would usher in the Millennium, which would be a thousand-year period of peace and prosperity, when Mormonism would spread throughout the world. The Second Coming of Christ is a strong belief within Mormonism; a video that went viral last week indicates that even Romney believes in the predictions surrounding the Second Coming. The leaders never made predictions as to when the Second Coming would take place but we were warned to always be ready, as it could happen at any moment.
Growing up, my father would say that “one day the Constitution will be hanging by a thread and the leaders of this country will look to the Mormon leaders to save it.” This statement, purportedly made by the founder of the Mormon Church, Joseph Smith, is commonly referred to as the White Horse Prophecy. I am not sure how many Mormons still ascribe to this prophecy. After Romney’s loss, a quick glance through the ex-mormon discussion boards indicates that more Mormons believe this prophecy than I realized. Many ex-mormons have reported the doomsday predictions of their Mormon relatives. Glenn Beck appears to believe in the White Horse prophecy, although I have always considered Glenn Beck to be a more extreme example of Mormonism. Nevertheless, there is a doomsday attitude that goes deeper than just the sorrow and fear associated with a candidate’s loss; I find myself wondering how many Mormons view this loss as a sign of the Second Coming.