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    The following classroom resource is offered to teachers who would like to use St. Anthony Messenger in the classroom. This resource is prepared with high school students in mind, but can be adapted for other age groups. We will feature one article for classroom use each month. Back issues, beginning in May 1997, contain a Teachers’ Guide. Teachers with access to computer labs should encourage students to access the article directly online. Students have our permission to print out a copy of the article for classroom use. We encourage you and your students to subscribe to the print edition of St. Anthony Messenger, where you will see all of the graphics, and more articles that you might find useful on a variety of topics. Please let us know how we can improve this service by sending feedback to



    Comparative religion:

    This article can support classroom work in comparative religion studies. It offers a personal view of everyday Catholics living, working and praying among a majority Mormon population in Utah.

    To focus students’ research in the two faiths, try approaching the comparison of Catholicism and Mormonism through these topics:

    1. History and tradition

    Does Catholicism trace its roots back to the days of Jesus’ life on earth, and even further to Judaism? Is there a common Catholic/Protestant history and tradition? Has the Catholic Church maintained a consistent leadership throughout its history? For a list of reliable sources, go to and click on “Related Catholic Links.”

    Research the history of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. See for the official Mormon Web page. It offers a history of the church, Joseph Smith, and its sacred writings. How far back can you trace it? Is there a consistent leadership? Is it different from that of Catholicism? Try a Net search under “Book of Mormon” to find text and history of Mormonism’s sacred books.

    2. Evangelizing

    How does the Catholic Church evangelize, or attract new members? Can you cite specific methods of bringing its message to new believers? Do liturgy and prayer play a role in evangelizing? How about service to those in need? For example, see for the Pastoral Arts Association of North America. Also check out the Catholic Worker home page at Or take a look at a profile of the late Mother Teresa. There is a Mother Teresa tribute on this site,, as well.

    What evangelizing approaches do the Mormons use? Besides information in the article, try also reading “Kingdom Come” in Time magazine, August 4, 1997, vol. 150, no. 5. You can find it on the Net through See the letters to the editor responding to the article, in the August 25 issue, to get a personal response to Time’s article. What kind of charitable work does the Mormon church do?

    3. The role of Christ

    Discuss Jesus’ role in the lives of Catholics. How do we characterize Jesus—Son of God, friend, brother, role model, support, source of life...? Why do we talk about Jesus as a sign of contradiction in the world? Is there a Christian value to suffering and pain, to a lack of acceptance in the world?

    How does this compare with a Mormon’s view of Jesus? Using the articles in St. Anthony Messenger and in Time, describe Jesus as a Mormon would. Talk about the Time discussion of the Mormons’ struggle for acceptance in this country. Is material success really a sign of virtue, as Time suggests? Is there a comparison to European Catholic immigrants who came to America and tried to assimilate to this country’s ways?


    Personal acceptance of faith:

    The St. Anthony Messenger article talks of Mormons evangelizing young people. A Utahn Catholic tells the author how the Mormons’ strong efforts in evangelizing create resistance among Catholics, to the point of not wanting to evangelize on their own behalf. In Family Life or general religion classes, a discussion of how we come to our faith may supplement class and text material.

    1. Discuss what presently attracts you to faith and belief. Or what would attract you to a life of faith? Brainstorm the idea with your class. Possible reasons may be:

    • someone else evangelizing you?
    • coming to faith by personal invitation?
    • a role model or the real life example of someone? Who could that someone be?
    • the direct influence of parents or teachers?
    • your own research into religious subjects?
    • growing up in a religious family or environment?
    • a predominantly passive acceptance of beliefs?
    • a deeply personal experience, such as a tragic loss of a loved one, prayer, or a retreat?

    2. Mormons and Catholics seem to have a common interest in building temples or cathedrals as symbols of their faith. Both faiths have extensive wealth in real estate and other investments. Does this serve a genuine need for gathering and worship? Does it attract believers? Discuss worship as a way of attracting/strengthening believers. Assembling believers in liturgy and prayer can be a powerful motivating force. Do Catholicism and Mormonism have anything in common in this regard?

    3. Your students might also try contacting teens in other parishes to discuss the path to personal faith. Through, you can find links to Catholic parishes with Web sites. Try also for links to other parishes with Web sites.

    Pope John Paul II addressed Christian youth at World Youth Day, held in Paris this past August. His addresses can be accessed by going to the Vatican’s official Web site, and then searching on the words “World Youth Day.”

    Further Resources

    Try accessing some of these Internet sources for reference. Be aware, however, that some of these sites may charge for downloading articles contained within the site’s archives. New York Times Los Angeles Times magazine —CNN —MSNBC —This site will take you to a number of online publications —The Associated Press Chicago Tribune magazine Washington Post

    Links Disclaimer:

    The links contained within this resource guide are functional at the time the page is posted. Over time, however, some of the links may become ineffective.

    These links are provided solely as a convenience to you and not as an endorsement by St. Anthony Messenger Press/Franciscan Communications of the contents on such third-party Web sites. St. Anthony Messenger Press/Franciscan Communications is not responsible for the content of linked third-party sites and does not make any representations regarding the content or accuracy of materials on such third-party Web sites. If you decide to access linked third-party Web sites, you do so at your own risk.

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