Bring Out Your Dead … To Be Baptized

-Submitted by David Drumm (Nal), Guest Blogger

Posthumous proxy baptism is a religious practice where a living person, acting as proxy, is baptized on behalf on a dead person. It is currently practiced by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Church), who submit names for the ordinance. The vicarious ordinance for the deceased have included Holocaust victims, prominent Nazis, and well known Jews such as Albert Einstein.

It has been discovered that the name of Elie Wiesel, Holocaust survivor and Nobel Peace Prize winner, had been entered into the database but not submitted for baptism. Wiesel said, “I object fervently. It’s an outrage.” Wiesel wants Romney to speak out on the subject of the baptisms. Wiesel claims he’s still alive.

Those who practice this rite view baptism as an indispensable requirement to enter the Kingdom of God and believe that baptizing the dead will satisfy this requirement. The justification for this belief comes from 1 Corinthians 15:29, though Biblical scholars question the verse’s translation and  meaning.

The outrage is that anyone would take this practice seriously. Either the practice works and the dead person enters the Kingdom of God, apparently a desirable outcome, or it doesn’t work and nothing happens. Those who object to the rite seem to be fearing the former outcome for there is no reason to object to the latter.

None of this brouhaha is about the dead.

H/T: Howard Friedman, HuffPo, Jesus and Mo.

104 thoughts on “Bring Out Your Dead … To Be Baptized

  1. pete, the problem with your suggestion, as I see it, is that all the Wiccans and pagans I know have respect for the dignity of others. Therein lies the rub.

  2. Blouise to Bruce in Jersey:

    “For cryin’ out loud Bruce … that’s fine and good for an agnostic but what about all those poor Catholics who are scraping together their pennies to have Masses said for their dead loved ones … how much more is it going to cost them to get their loved ones out of Mormon heaven and into Catholic heaven?!”

    That made my evening. 😉

  3. “Mormon Baptism Targets Anne Frank — Again”

    Allegedly she was re-baptized this last week for, like, the tenth time.

    Some late night comedian I was watching last night said to the effect ’10 times, wow, by now she should be Pope of the Mormons after all that.’

    According to the article above, based on their own rules for re-baptism, a descendant has to make the request- she had no descendants to make the request.

    What is it with Mormons and Anne Frank? A status thing? Can they not leave the memory of that poor girl alone? Sheesh, Mormons are nuts.

  4. Eugene Volokh:

    Posthumous Baptisms

    Either the Mormons are right about their theology, or they’re wrong. If they’re right, then the posthumous baptism will do good. If they’re wrong (and, being not a Mormon, I by definition think they are wrong, or else I’d be a Mormon), then the baptism will have no effect whatsoever

  5. lotta,

    I have this picture in my mind based on the words out of the book of John … “in the house of my Father are many mansions”

    I see a street of mansions and there is one of them that’s got a kind of notoriety attached to its address … on one side of the “Notoriety Mansion” is the “Catholic Mansion” where all the inhabitants are forming up in parties to go on raids of the Mansion on the other side of the “Notoriety Mansion” which is the “Mormon Mansion” where Catholics are being held prisoner through the weaponry of baptism. The “Notoriety Mansion” in between the two is, of course, the “Muslim Mansion” with its 72 virgins and constant partying. Across the street Is the Jewish Mansion which is, naturally, vacant ’cause heaven is not part of their theology.

    I need a screen writer.

  6. Mike:

    You said: “One would think that if keeping their word was so important to LDS they would have discovered and announced it on their own.”

    No, just you. The fact that the antecedent and consequent, again, don’t have any logical relation to each other is further evidence of your skewed vision of the world by which you can let your dishonest and ignorant demons go meddling about.

    Mike’s new defamation standard. If “one would think…”



    Now worries – you can dump the candles. 1) The baptisms are inefficacious against those that don’t accept them, and 2) They are further inefficacious against oversized men that wear undersized shirts. You are safe.

    • Jack,

      Your reading comprehension, or perhaps your ability to grasp any perspective but your own, discloses that you can’t comprehend my point, much less refute it. You don’t discuss, or debate, you merely shallowly pontificate.

  7. Blouise

    just around the corner is the baptist mansion. they’re busy denying that the catholics, mormons,or muslims are there.

    and wednesday evenings are mandatory attendance.

  8. pete,

    The only different group are the atheists … camped out on a vacant lot, they keep stealing water from the Baptists and throwing it on the Wicked Witches Of the West coven residing across the street in the Herb Garden.

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