Friday, August 17, 2012

LDS Infographics Again

The LDS church has added a few more infographics to add to my first and second list. Here's three more to add to it:

Africa Clean Water ProjectAfrica Clean Water Project

The Mormon Church is involved in many humanitarian aid projects. One of them is bringing clean water to African communities. The best part of LDS Charities is that the Mormon Church pays for all the overhead so 100% of donations go to the cause.

Mormon Christianity Timeline< LDS Timeline of Christianity

The Mormon view is not always a unique one, but in the case of Christ's church it tends to differ from other religions. Especially in the case of how history has played out. This is not to say events did or did not happen, but more of how those events are interpreted. This infographic sums it up nicely.

LDS Global Christ Centered FaithA Global Christ Centered Faith >

Where are the LDS people? All over the world. This infographic covers how the Mormons are worldwide, where those people live, what languages they speak and other tidbits about how members are aware of the world around them. A very useful trait in the Global Information Age.

Friday, May 18, 2012

More Mormon Infographics

Wouldn't you know it, they released another interesting infographic.

General ConferenceGeneral Conference Infographic

The LDS church has a conference for all 14 million of it's members plus anyone else that wants to tune in. This infographic shows some interesting statistics about General Conference. You can watch conference this Saturday and Sunday. Check on the General Conference website for more info.

Update 04/22/2012 - Man, them LDS folks are busy. They've made yet another infographic.

Mormon Lay LeadershipMormon Lay Leadership Infographic

One of the things that sets Mormons apart from other religions is they have no paid clergy. In face, no leadership in the church is paid just for being a leader. This info graphic only covers two tiers of church leadership: The Congregation called a Ward and the Stake which is made up of several (approximately 7-15) Wards.

Be graphical.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Mormon Infographics

In recent years you have been seeing Mormons more and more in the media. The reports range from praise and honesty to rage and lies. To help clear things up some media outlets have gone to the trouble of putting facts into attractive and useful infographics to help us better understand them Mormon folk. I decided to compile some of them here:

Mormons In AmericaMormons in America Infographic

The Pew Forum put together a list of statistics showing how America views Mormons and how Mormons view america. There is no accompanying article for the infographic, but there is a considerable amount of text. Highlights include LDS opinions about the election.

Mormon Volunteerism Prosocial InfographicMormon Volunteerism

University of Pennsylvania professor Ram Cnaan and fellow researchers Van Evans and Daniel W. Curtis jointly published a study which producted this infographic. It talks about hours and dollars spent in and out of the LDS church. Highlights inlclude how prosocial Mormons are.

Mormonism 101: FAQMormonism 101: FAQ Infographic

The Mormon News Room put together an article answering common questions about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. This is a sizeable article containing a lot of useful information about the church. It finishes with a handy infographic summing up some statistics about the church and its members. Highlights inlclude their christianity and attendance.

These handy, more palatable bits of data should help you and your friends know more about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormons). My hope is that through good information we might dispel the misconceptions about the church. So if you found these useful, please share them with a friend. You can even use the social media buttons below.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

The Definition of Marriage

I decided to look up the definition of marriage the other day. I was curious as to the exact wording that would be used. I was surprised to see what they had done.

Courtroom WeddingAll sources clearly state that marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. No surprise there, this definition has been clearly defined in nearly all societies in history. Though they might recognize other unions, genders or relationships, the clearly defined rules of marriage has always been assigned to a man and a woman.

The entymology of the word relates it both to a man and a woman. The latin matrem (meaning mother) and monium (meaning action, state, condition), together meaning a relationship where the female becomes a mother. This can only happen in a male-female relationship.

Imagine my surprise when some of the dictionaries included a secondary definition including same-sex marriages. The defining of words is a unpassionate discipline that does not bend to the whims of society. If a word falls into general use in society, it's definition needs to be established and subsequently published. If a word is used as slang by a small group and fails to gain such widespread usage or understanding it is not to be entered and called slang. But there it sits, begging the question why?

How about widespread usage? How many people in society use the word "ideal" to mean "idea" (ie. I have a good ideal)? Or how many say "I have more then you" when they mean than? Do you find those definitions in the dictionary? No. Well, what does society think?

Didn't same-sex marriage just become legal in several states? Not by the will of the peoople. In fact, not a single US state has voted in same sex marriage. Whenever the people have been asked to define marriage they have said again and again that it means a union between a man and a woman. Those states that currently allow same sex marriage only do so because millions of dollars were paid to lawyers to make it so. And serving a small group's interests does not a definition change.

Common use is where we derive definitions from and the common use for these alternatives to marriage requires modifiers to avoid confusion. When someone in the media or just a person on the street wants to tell you about the civil union of a homosexual couple they say phrases like "same-sex marriage," "gay marriage" and "homosexual marriage." There is a reason for this, when the general public hears the phrase "married couple" they know that means a man and a woman. Without the modifiers the word's meaning is clear and understood.

If I were to mention dry water an idea pops into your mind contrary to the word water. There are scientific publications that refer to a silica coated substance that is 95% water. It is dry to the touch and could be very useful in chemical applications. If that term were to gain widespread usage would dictionaries then add the "dry" definition to the word water? No, of course not.

By adding the same-sex entries definition of marriage, dictionaries have taken a political stance on the issue. As a percieved neutral source, this is a violation of the public trust in such institutions as dictionaries. I find this unconsionable, irresponsible and damaging. What other definitions can they be persuaded to change?

Be defined.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

The Divorce Rate Is 27%

Bride and GroomDivorce rates in the US have hit 50%. I hear this all the time from every source that has something to say on the subject of divorce. This is wrong and I would like to set the record straight.

Everybody's wrong?

Sure, jump to the extreme, but yes, that is what I am saying. I've heard this statistic for at least 15 years, probably more. Why do people say this and where does it come from? The US Census. They keep track of the number of marriages and divorces per 1000 people per year. Here is a quick table:2

 1980199020002008
Marriages15.914.912.510.6
Divorces7.97.26.25.2
Percent Failing49.7%48.3%49.6%49%

So it's about 49%

And when you look at the raw numbers it does seem that way. Let me break this down a little more: In 2008 there were 10.6 marriages and there were 5.2 divorces per 1000 people.2 It does prompt a few questions like: How many were first time marriages or divorces? Did they live together prior to marriage? Did they have the salmon or the steak? Did they have existing children? Do they drop subsequent marriages?

Does it matter?

The salmon is better for you and yes, we need to know statistics about before the marriage. These are the ones that tell us more about marriage as an institution. People who divorced are three times4 more likely to divorce again.6 People who lived together before marriage are 25%3 more likely to divorce. Only 33% of married people have ever been divorced.5 Take a look at this:

Likelihood of divorce:3
First Time27%
Not First Time73%
Lived Together33%
Preexisting Child34%

What is the dicvorce rate?

Hard to say. Take into account my father. He's been married 3 times and divorced twice. His own divorce rate is 66%. My mother-in-law has been married twice and divorced twice so her divorce rate is 100%. How does that factor into my 1 marriage with 0 divorces? If we do straight math it would be 55.3%. It's complicated, but we can take some things into account.

Like what?

Happiness. 64% of married people are satisfied with how their personal life is going as opposed to 43% of single.8 I don't have time to inumerate the studies that show children are happier in married households. These tell us that marriage, as an institution, works to produce happier people and children. Which is really the purpose of marriage.

But, they fail anyway.

There's a long list of reasons why they do. Most of these boil down to people's unwillingness to stick it out through challenges and infidelity. Infidelity is definitely a dealbreaker, but harships can be overcome. 80% of people who avoid divorce are happy 5 years later. 40% of divorced people think their divorce was preventable9 and 65% of these divorcees wished their spouse had worked harder. 35% of men (21% of women) wished they had worked harder to save their marriage.

So marriage is good.

That's what the majority of people who have had experience with marriage (75% of adults) are saying. This would probably be why only 27% of first time marriages result in divorce and that's a statistic worth passing on.

Be married.

 

Sources:

  1. Census 2002
  2. Census 2008
  3. Barna, 2001
  4. Barna, 2004
  5. Barna, 2008
  6. NWO, 2007
  7. Warner 2007
  8. Gallup 2007
  9. DN 2011