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Posted by: Gotchwallybinga ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 12:22PM

When I was an active Mormon, I heard all the time that the LDS Church was "the fastest growing religion on Earth". Heard that all the time. I watched BYU-TV, and I saw Elder Faust (apostle now dead) saying it, and I heard President Gordon B. Hinckley ("The Hinkster") say it, on two occasions. I heard it all the time in Church on Sunday.

But...it just was't true. It was never true. It was never even CLOSE to being true.

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Posted by: babyloncansuckit ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 12:28PM

They lied to me!

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Posted by: Done & Done ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 12:37PM

Heard it all the time. Fasting growing church. Joseph Smith got it going and now it is blazing like wild fire around the world. Hardy har har har.

"A marvelous and wonderful thing is coming to pass. The Lord is fulfilling His promise that His gospel shall be as the stone cut out of the mountain without hands which would roll forth and fill the whole earth, as Daniel saw in vision (see Daniel 2:31–45; D&C 65:2). A great miracle is taking place right before our eyes."

---Gordon B. Hinckley Genereral Conference Oct 2007

What is taking place right before our eyes with Mormons is more of a hemorrhage.

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Posted by: azsteve ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 12:56PM

The church probably grew its fastest in the way of new converts per member and youth participation between 1975 and 1980. By 1985, the growth was obviously declining, although people still touted that saying about fastest growth rate even then, whether it was ever true or not. This growth led to increased narcissism by the church leaders, and their belief by them that ultimately, the church had more authority than even the government, even though they knew they wern't in charge of the country, at least not yet.

During this same time frame, the church leaders did not see what would happen to the internet. Even as they excommunicated church historians and BYU professors who questioned some basic historical issues based on fact, and started asking the right questions, these church leaders could not have foreseen how they would ever lose control of the information. With their own television networks and a satellite dish at every stake center, they figured that no one could ever beat them at the propaganda game they waged on the rest of us.

Then people started writing books to expose the church for what it was doing. The church could have probably won that war with their television and radio networks, and their financial empire standing behind every word they said. But there was no way at any price that the church could take-on and win their war against social media via the internet. Social media is everywhere all of the time, not just when the church writes checks to pay for television commercials. Even with an omnipotent God on their side (supposedly), they never saw that coming.

Now, the mormon church is trying to re-build themselves in a society where the rules have changed and the mormon church, even it's most secret temple blood oaths, have been exposed and ultimately abandoned by them. The church is now like Amway. Everyone knows what it's about and no one wants to attend a meeting, a discussion, or any kind of briefing about it. Even the name shakes people up as their so-called prophet wants to use the full official (and long) name of the church, because possibly many people in the public won't recognize the church that way as the cult they already know about.

So growth prospects for the mormon church are bleak right now. This has happened to them in the past. They know what to do. It is time now to morph in to something else. The old-timers like us will all die off while the church itself is immortal. Eventually, local businessmen everywhere will once again, while looking for a new way to gain social power, will get together and help the church to control the information under the new rules, and the cycle will start over. They will use the existing wealth, power, and membership base of the church to leverage themselves in to positions of influence in their local communities as Bishops and Stake Presidents. Some will make it all the way to become general authorities. The membership will start growing again. This time, the racism, homophobia, temple death threats, and everything else that wasn't working for them this time will be absent from their teachings and their long history (at least as far as they are concerned). Our era will be referred to as a second great apostacy. Once their appeal starts spreading to the youth once again, they will grow again.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 09/01/2018 01:28PM by azsteve.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 12:59PM

It was a lie from start to finish. There are over a billion Moslems in the world and nearly as many Catholics. Both groups have high fertility rates. They grow, and have always grown, vastly faster than Mormonism simply because of that.

As I wrote in a thread days ago, Mormonism is a rounding error in terms of population numbers, doctrine, and influence in today's world. We were just unfortunate to be the few who were hurt by that bizarre anomaly.

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Posted by: jay ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 09:40PM

I wonder how those fertility rates break down in the different Moslem sects. Could have big ramifications. :)

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 02:39PM

Indeed.

It won't surprise you that, as in Christianity, it is the more extreme and misogynistic sects that have the highest fertility rates. Poverty also correlates, both cause and effect, with a rapid rate of reproduction. Egypt is a clear example of that; the average age of the population there is low and falling toward, or past, levels at which it will be very hard to maintain stability.

Perhaps the best way to lower fertility rates and support for extreme religious and political movements is to educate women. That helps society/ies in all sorts of ways.

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Posted by: BYU Boner ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 01:15PM

Repeat a lie often enough, and you’ll soon believe it. The fastest growing religion is probably Islam.

The Morg hasn’t followed what other more traditional Christian denominations have done—remove names when folks don’t participate after a couple of years.

Yep, members of my congregation who don’t participate are sent a letter after two years asking if they’d still like to be a rostered member of the congregation. If they say no or don’t reply, names are taken off the rolls. This ISN’T an excommunication, it’s simply acknowledging that they’re not a member of our congregation—they may go to church elsewhere or not at all.

The Morg, continues to count members even if those members have nothing to do with it. In the past, it was very difficult to remove and one’s name. Now with the Internet and sites like this, Morg leaders are confronted with many members voluntarily exiting. Even though the leaders barely mention this, eventually with lower birth-rates and members leaving, it will become obvious—Mormonism is decreasing.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/01/2018 01:18PM by BYU Boner.

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Posted by: babyloncansuckit ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 01:50PM

Instead of golden arches, there’s a golden angel. 16 million screwed.

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Posted by: azsteve ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 01:47PM

Good post Boner,

Also, I think that the mormon church is the only church that automatically revokes your baptism for either resigning from the church, or for getting excommunicated by the church. In other churches, when you leave the congregation, you are still considered already a convert for life, not a new convert when you join a new congregation.

I would like to see the mormon church leaders deny that resigning from the mormon church always revokes your baptism. This issue strikes at the heart of the belief of mormon devine authority, and of the belief in the authority of the mormon church itself to act in the name of god. Would God ever take away your baptism after you've committed to him, regardless of whether you leave a specific church or not? Admitting to this belief that yes, the mormon church will revoke your baptism if you leave their church, will take another toll on the mormon church, as leaders try to deny and/or justify this belief to the rest of the world. Other Christian churches will then say "no, the mormons are not christians" for this reason alone. Just as the law prevents you from being excommunicated for the mere act of leaving the mormon church, one day pressure from the larger community could prevent you from having your baptism revoked for leaving the mormon church. The next step would be to get the mormon church to recognize baptisms from other churches. So much for Devine authority yea!!! This is kind of like losing a patent, a trademark, or a copyright. Your product can be manufactured and sold by others and you have to do repair work on your competitors products if you want to be respected at all. Maybe they'll even have to become nice people.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/01/2018 01:57PM by azsteve.

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Posted by: babyloncansuckit ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 02:03PM

Revoking baptism still requires the laying on of hands. On a computer keyboard.

Stan controls the waters. God controls the bit bucket.

I’m kidding, of course. If you look at how software is made, God has nothing to do with it. It’s a digital Sodom and Gomorrah.

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Posted by: messygoop ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 03:40PM

Yes, the internet sure bit the church in the ass.

Also, it's been great to see those NewNameNoah videos inside the temple.

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Posted by: badam2 ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 04:44PM

I heard that all the time as well. They really made it seem like the lord was making his 'true church' grow to fill the whole world with his 'true' gospel.

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 07:28PM

I remember in the mid-1960s being told in one meeting or another that the current growth rate had churchCo hitting 100 million by the year 2000!

Zowie!

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Posted by: jc ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 08:44PM

I remember a statistic that I read in the "Church News" that was mailed to my parents home in California. This was the insert that appeared in Utah's Dessert Newspaper and you could special order that section for a weekly delivery.

The article mentioned how fast TSCC was growing. In fact, the article boasted that there was more than 1 meetinghouse being completed PER DAY somewhere in the world. In other words, more than 365 meetinghouses were being constructed yearly.

That article so impressed my mind that I remember repeating it to my dearest friend in January 1990. (Yes, I have a memory that plagues me.)

Well, my dad attended BYU education week in Provo in the early 1990's - well before the truth about LDSinc hit the internet in a big way. The CES instructor (a religion professor) spoke about the small nature of TCCS globally. The instructor said:

"The Church is on the one-inch-line of a football field AND GOING BACKWARDS." In other words, there's so much to be done!

Twenty-five-plus or so years later...and the news is...it's even worse!

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Posted by: cludgie ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 09:06PM

It has always been NOT true. I hope no one is saying that today.

Consider this: The Seventh-Day Adventists were formed in 1863, 30 years after Mormons. Today they have just over 20 million members, and enjoy fantastic retention. That's immediate and demonstrable proof that Mormons have never, ever been the fastest-growing church. And considering that Seventh-Day Adventists are not the fastest growing religion, it's likely either Islam or Roman Catholicism, if only by births.

As an aside, the Adventists operate hospitals, and take medical care and education to far off places, like Congo, etc. Do Mormons? No.

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Posted by: donbagley ( )
Date: September 01, 2018 09:48PM

They used to say it all the time. Been kind of quiet lately, haven't they?

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Posted by: badam2 ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 05:03PM

Feels like a good time to break their back or start putting nails in the coffin or prepping the coffin.

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Posted by: TX Rancher ( )
Date: September 02, 2018 01:53AM

It's not the case today. Not even sure if the numbers were accurate back years ago...and now it's clear, from the church's own figures, that it's declining in growth.

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Posted by: Gotchawallybinga ( )
Date: September 02, 2018 05:15AM

Nope. NEVER fastest growing anything. Not even close. Highest rate of Church growth was in Joseph Smith's day, from six to 20,000 or so in 14 years. Assemblies of God founded in 1906, now has over 60,000,000 worldwide. SDA Church, JWs, many others, growing much faster than the LDS Church, which has a growth rate well UNDER the birth rate.

TX Rancher Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It's not the case today. Not even sure if the
> numbers were accurate back years ago...and now
> it's clear, from the church's own figures, that
> it's declining in growth.

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Posted by: midwestanon ( )
Date: September 02, 2018 09:09AM

Even by the growth metric of conversion, which is the only plausible claim that Mormons could make about there being the fastest growing religion, I believe there are several other religions, some of which have been listed here, now that I have much higher rates of conversion, like Seventh-day Adventists and Jehovah’s Witnesses, my guess is even some of those Baptist groups have much higher rates of conversion.

Group like Muslims and Catholics maintain their numbers typically by mostly having children who remain in the faith, am I wrong about this? I mean, do these religions even actively proselytize? I mean in the sense of seeking out new members to convert versus just the cultural expectation or the implied threat of not being a member, especially in some Muslim countries.

I’m sure there are examples, but as far as I know it’s not common for Catholics or Muslims to send out missionaries to do religious conversion. What Catholics another Christian groups, don’t their missions typical revolve around humanitarian service?



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 09/02/2018 09:11AM by midwestanon.

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Posted by: Greyfort ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 09:35AM

I’d bet that if I asked her, my friend would still say it.

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Posted by: 3X ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 09:47AM

The replacement go-to phrase is "It's a world-wide religion" - implying a membership greater than actual.

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Posted by: KesslerTheNevermo ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 10:49AM

Growth rate, defined as the ratio of the increase to the number you had to start, is always going to be higher for things that start smaller. McDonald's has 37,000 locations, while Five Guys has 1,500. If they each add 75 locations, Five Guys grows 5%, while McDonald's grows 1/5 of a percent. As the numbers get bigger, these rates become more difficult to maintain, and then impossible. "Fastest growing", whatever that phrase describes, is code for "was really small to start with."

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Posted by: Dave the Atheist ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 10:53AM

Is a negative growth rate still a growth rate ?

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 11:01AM

"Satan is making our church shrink faster than any other church in the world, thus proving that we're the church he fears the most, and also satisfying the bible prophecy that in the Last Days even the very elect would be deceived! Go meerkat!!"

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Posted by: Eric K ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 12:55PM

I ran into a still active Mormon 2 years ago. He was always a bit of a jerk to me when I was active with what I assume was a bit of a superiority complex. I am not sure what exactly, but I mentioned to him the large number of people resigning from the church. His response was, "In the last days the very elect will be deceived." Yes, declining activity and membership is proof the corporation is true.

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Posted by: CrispingPin ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 04:05PM

When the LDS church was growing, it was proof that it was the one true church because it was fulfillment of the prophecy of the stone cut without hands that rolls forth to fill all the earth.

Now that it’s in decline, it’s proof that it’s the one true church because it fulfills the prophecy that in the latter days, even the very elect will be deceived.

No matter what happens, it’s proof that TSCC is God’s church. They might as well flip a coin and say “heads, we’re true, tails, we’re true.”

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Posted by: kathleen ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 11:06AM

It's only the fastest growing among dead people.

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 04:30PM

Hahahahahaha! Good one! Although every name submitted gets dead-dunked, what?, 800 times a year? But yeah, no other church can touch the mormon growth rate after death. Go Meerkats!!

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Posted by: tumwater ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 12:40PM

By the LDS website
https://www.mormonnewsroom.org/topic/church-growth

Membership was 1 million in 1947,
2 million in 1963
3 million in 1971
Then another 1,000,000 about every 3 years to a total member ship of 16,000,000 now.

At this rate it would take until well after the year 5000 for the LDS membership to reach 1 billion, while the world population right now is 7+ billion.

BYU has a ways to go to catch up with Notre Dame.

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Posted by: GNPE1 ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 02:31PM

Children of lds parents: om
Only growth!

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Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: September 03, 2018 04:56PM

In the 1970s and 1980s, it looked like they were the fastest growing. The Baby Boomers were starting families, so there were a ton of "echo boomer" babies in the wards.

Young non-mo Baby Boomer parents, if they were not part of the counter culture, were often afraid of it, so a fair number of young, well educated families also joined Mormonism. Rodney Stark extrapolated those numbers forward to hundreds of millions of Mormons a century later.

Those days are over. No baby boom now, inside or outside of Mormonism. No young, educated, intact families joining either, at least not in North America. If you project current growth rates out a century, they won't even hold their own as a percentage of either world or US population.

Any claims of being the fastest growing are delusions of a sclerotic organization trying to hide the fact that its best years are far behind it.

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Posted by: azsteve ( )
Date: September 14, 2018 08:59AM

A church can be the fastest growing church and still not be the biggest church. It's all about growth rate, not about size. For example, if you start with only one member in month one and go to two members in month two, then continue doubling the membership every month for the next ten consecutive months, you could be the fastest growing church for that year (doubling your congregation size every month for twelve consecutive months), even though you only have 2048 total number of members at the end of that year. When you're a small unknown church, it's relatively easy to do that. When you have fifteen million members, doubling in size every month is impossible.

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