Press Kit
Basic Latter-day Saint Beliefs

Central to Latter-day Saint belief is the divinity of Jesus Christ. He is regarded as the Son of God and the Saviour of the world. Christ atoned for mankind's sins, subject to our repentance. Through his great resurrection, all mankind will also be resurrected. God the Father, like the Son, is an immortal being who has a body of flesh and bones.

The Church teaches that men and women were created as spirit beings prior to this life by God the Father. This life is a training period for God's children. They come to this earth to receive a physical body and are given agency to make decisions. Through life's experiences, individuals can learn Godlike qualities and eventually return to live with him.

Because God is a loving Heavenly Father, he does not leave his children without direction. The Church teaches that God gives direction for all people through the scriptures and through the Church's president who is regarded as a prophet, like the men of God who led his Church during biblical times. The president reveals God's word for the present day, augmenting and explaining the words of ancient prophets of God. Individuals can also receive guidance for their own lives through personal prayer.

Members believe that the Church today is the same Church that existed in Christ's day. The original Church of Jesus Christ was lost to the earth not long after the death of his early apostles. The Church was restored to earth soon after God the Father and Jesus Christ appeared to the fourteen-year-old boy, Joseph Smith. Through Joseph Smith, the Church was again organized on earth in 1830, along with its doctrines, its organization (including a Council of Twelve Apostles) and its authority or priesthood.

Doctrine of the Church is also recorded in the Bible and in The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ. Just as the Bible is scripture and is a record of Christ's dealings with the Jews, The Book of Mormon is a record of Christ's dealings with ancient people on the American continent.

Latter-day Saints are known for their abstinence from alcohol and tobacco, and for their emphasis on leading strictly moral lives, being good citizens and serving others. Because of the Church's interest in educational and intellectual pursuits, it operates Brigham Young University, the largest private university in the USA. The university has campuses or learning centres in Utah, Hawaii, Idaho and Israel.

Style Guide Note:When reporting about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, please use the complete name of the Church in the first reference. For more information on the use of the name of the Church, go to our online Style Guide.