The Mormon Church has a rather odd practice of baptizing the dead.

They believe that by placing faithful members as stand-ins for the deceased they can offer the dead a last chance to receive salvation.

According to a researcher Hitler is listed as a completed baptism, as is Stalin and Ghengis Khan, reports Associated Press.

But not only do the bad need baptism according to Mormons, so do the good. Buddha and the Catholic Saint Joan of Arc are listed along with Anne Frank, a victim of Hitler’s Holocaust.

Sound crazy?

Well according to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (LDS) their baptism is the only way to reach the “Celestial Kingdom,” which is according to Mormonism, the best neighborhood in heaven.

Two lower and seemingly less “heavenly” neighborhoods are also available, they say.

So Mormons gather genealogy information to identify which dead need their help to get to a better place in the hereafter. This is the primary motivation behind their vast genealogical archives.

However, some folks just don’t appreciate this gesture and apparently feel it’s rather patronizing if not insulting.

Jews in particular have repeatedly told Mormons not to include their ancestors or brethren on such lists. And the Mormons promised not to, or so they said.

Now it appears LDS may have broken its promise.

The concept that such baptisms are necessary comes from the Mormon belief that the LDS is the only “true church” and thus the exclusive organization that can provide salvation on the earth. According to Mormons, other faiths don’t have a valid “priesthood” and therefore their rituals don’t count.

Many theologians might consider this a bit presumptuous and evidence of ethnocentric triumphalism.

Jews seem to feel it’s offensive, disrespectful and simply want to be left alone.


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