Wiesenthal Center Welcomes New LDS Warning on Continuing Posthumous Baptisms of Holocaust Victims

March 2, 2012

The Simon Wiesenthal Center welcomes the report that the presidency of the Mormon Church is making a new effort to stop posthumous baptisms of Jewish victims of the Nazi Holocaust.

"We appreciate that the leadership of the Mormon Church is taking the step to address the concerns of our community by publicly communicating to their members during Sunday Services," said Rabbi Abraham Cooper, Associate Dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. "We can only hope and pray that those who have persisted in this practice will heed the pain it caused to the families of those who lived and died as Jews and adhere to the LDS Church's policy," Cooper added

According to media reports, a letter will be read during Sunday service, wherein church leaders will remind members that names submitted for proxy temple ordinances should be related to the submitter.

“Without exception, Church members must not submit for proxy temple ordinances any names from unauthorized groups, such as celebrities and Jewish Holocaust victims. … If members do so, they may forfeit their new family-search privileges. Other corrective action may also be taken."
The letter is signed by Church of Latter-day Saints President Thomas S. Monson, as well as Henry B. Eyring and Deiter F. Uchtdorf. 

The letter comes following several recent revelations of posthumous baptisms of well-known Holocaust victims, including the mother of Nazi-hunter Simon Wiesenthal and Anne Frank, in addition to murdered Wall Street Journal reporter, Daniel Pearl.

For more information, please contact the Center's Public Relations Department, 310-553-9036, join the Center on Facebook, www.facebook.com/simonwiesenthalcenter
, or follow @simonwiesenthal for news updates sent direct to your Twitter page or mobile device.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400.000 members. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the Council of Europe, the OAS and the Latin American Parliament.