What should we call ourselves?

A man who was visiting said he’s been puzzling over it for awhile and has just decided to call himself a Christian.  As a result, an acquaintance came up to him a few days ago and said he’d decided to turn his life over to Christ.  So the man who was visiting invited him to church, and he agreed to come next week.

President Nelson had this to suggest:

  • the thing to avoid is omitting references to Jesus Christ
  • Quote:

    Our revised style guide is helpful. It states: “In the first reference, the full name of the Church is preferred: ‘The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.’ When a shortened [second] reference is needed, the terms ‘the Church’ or the ‘Church of Jesus Christ’ are encouraged. The ‘restored Church of Jesus Christ’ is also accurate and encouraged.”15

    If someone should ask, “Are you a Mormon?” you could reply, “If you are asking if I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, yes, I am!”

    If someone asks, “Are you a Latter-day Saint?”16 you might respond, “Yes, I am. I believe in Jesus Christ and am a member of His restored Church.”

Helpful on how we should refer to the Church, but not very helpful on what we should call ourselves.  “Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints” is a mouthful.  There is no way to make an adjective out of that, so you are stuck with the prepositional phrase “of members of the Church of Jesus Christ of latter-day Saints.”

I have been using Restoration Christian Restored Christian sounds odd to my ear, but maybe my ear is off.  Latter-day Saint Christian and Latter-day Christian could also serve (Christian is more or less the equivalent of the New Testament term ‘Saint’).    What do you think?

But you don’t always have to use the same general term each time.  Whatever you feel like bearing your testimony about, call yourself that kind of Christian.  Customize your self-description to the needs of the person you are with.  If you feel like someone needs to hear about the temple, call yourself a temple Christian.  If someone needs to hear about the loving father they have, call yourself a Heavenly Father Christian.  Here are some possibilities:

      • Temple Christian
      • Family Home Evening Christian
      • Home Church Christian
      • Family Christian
      • Family History Christian
      • Deification Christian
      • Holy Ghost Christian
      • Marriage Christian
      • Priesthood Christian
      • Modern Prophets Christian
      • Pre-existence Christian
      • Adam and Eve Christian
      • Eternal Gender Christian
      • One Flesh Christian
      • Sealing Christian
      • Eternities Christian
      • Eternal Families Christian
      • Masculine Christian/Feminine Christian (Man Christian/Woman Christian)
      • Endure-to-the-End Christian
      • Ordinances Christian
      • Joy Christian
      • Exaltation Christian
      • Repentance Christian
      • Progress Christian
      • Spiritual Gifts Christian
      • Sabbath Christian
      • Hymn Christian
      • Authority Christian
      • Fatherhood Christian

    It doesn’t have to be some grand doctrine. It just needs to be something important to you and your listener.

      • Youth Dance Christian
      • Camping Christian
      • Healthy Body Christian

    You can easily introduce any topic you want this way. The important thing is that you have something real to say about it and you don’t hide your connection to the Church.

    Friend: You go to church, right?
    You: Yeah, I’m a Fatherhood Christian.
    Friend:  What’s that?
    You:  I’m a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  One of the things I love the most about the Church is what I’ve learned about being a father.  It’s my identity.  It’s something I share with God.  Being a dad is so meaningful to me now, it’s fun but its spiritual.
    Friend: I hear you. It feels like a calling to me sometimes.

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