Saturday, February 17, 2007

States of Grace

Listening to this NPR broadcast last night, I was surprised to hear Rev. Robert Schenck (President of Faith and Action, President of the National Clergy Council and Minister in the Evangelical Church Alliance) note that about half of his Evangelical friends still have a problem with Romney because of his religion. Aside from the fact that Mitt will be our President, not our Pastor, I believe that most people's concerns with Mormonism could be mitigated by an honest examination of the Mormon faith and its adherents. There are many ways this can be done, starting here and here, but another option, suggested by Mark, is to check out the movie States of Grace. I haven't seen it yet, but I am a big Richard Dutcher fan and I'm sure it's a great movie.

See the trailer here and the first 11 minutes of the movie here.

Mark's post:

First of all, as a traditional Baptist, I was stunned after viewing a movie called "States of Grace." A friend of mine from Utah sent it to me for Christmas. In spite of everything I have come to learn about Mormonism, here is a movie – a Mormon movie nonetheless – that demonstrates a deep understanding of -- and longing for -- unconditional grace and forgiveness through a personal relationship with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. In my opinion, it movingly depicts the power of God's healing love and redemptive grace that comes after a fall and repentance. It not only shows the heart of Christianity, but it convincingly challenges the stereotypes that many of us traditional Christians have of Mormons and their belief in only conditional grace.

Second of all, I love my country and the constitution it was founded upon. The only person I believe will stand up for those beliefs is Mitt Romney – a.k.a. The “Mormon Candidate.” I will say that it would have been hard to pull the lever for a Mormon until I had a few questions cleared up for me. I believe this movie can be a landmark film in presenting a view of the Mormon church and Mormon life that has never before made it to the big screen – answering simple questions such as polygamy (by far the funniest scene in the movie), interfaith relationships and Mormon beliefs concerning grace.

Many, and I do mean many, of the Mormon beliefs and doctrines I disagree with, but I don’t want a country ran by Pres. Clinton II, Obama, McCain or even Giuliani. I believe Gov. Romney is a Christian who shares my most important values. Now more than ever, we Christians need to pull together and I believe States of Grace can be that elusive element that brings us together. The movie is extremely thought-provoking and very educational for many in America who don’t know much beyond popular rumor about the faith of the man who just might be the next president. In short, this little film has the potential to actually shift and mold public opinion in a presidential campaign without being a political hatchet job like Fahrenheit 911. It should be required viewing for the entire Christian community.

My question is this – With all the stereotypes and misinformation out there about his beliefs, why hasn't anyone put this movie out there to help him? I would have to say I have never felt closer to Mormonism, and Christ's message of love, redemption, and hope, than after viewing States of Grace. You have a tool to answer the questions that would help me pull the lever for Gov. Romney, and you’re not using it. I emailed “Evangelicals for Mitt” and they’ve never heard of the movie. I emailed a website called and they dismissed me. I found more information on this movie at

I hope you care enough to do something about this – or I’ll find a way to do it myself. I can't believe that a Baptist has to push a Mormon movie, but if thats what it takes, then that is what it takes. I just need help.

Your Brother in Christ,

Mark L.

p.s. I Googled “Mitt Romney supporters” and found your website. I hope you have some sway with the powers-that-be in Salt Lake City because I couldn’t even find “States of Grace” at Wal-Mart – and they carry everything.


Rhapsidiomite said...

I noticed the same comment:

Anonymous said...

Well you know my Baptist brother, I never heard of this movie. Turns out it's not a church movie, the guy that did God's Army did this one too I think but it looks like a great flick! There was a missionary in my mission from the south, used to be Baptist and got run outta town when he joined the LDS church. Boy, could he teach with power, his Spanish stunk with that southern drawl and everything but he was definitely on fire when it came to teaching the word. Anyway thanks for the tip, and I always wondered what the evangelical hang-up was about Mormons not being Christian. Maybe Romney's candidacy will bring a lot of this to light. Thanks for a little more insight into that kind of thinking. Your friend Liz

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