The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Reaffirms Political Neutrality

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Reaffirms Political Neutrality

News Release

In light of recent news media reports about Australian Latter-day Saints participating alongside other citizens in democratic and political processes, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints reaffirms the following:

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is neutral in matters of party politics.

The Church does not:

  • Endorse, promote or oppose political parties, candidates or platforms.
  • Allow its church buildings, membership lists or other resources to be used for partisan political purposes.
  • Attempt to direct its members as to which candidate or party they should give their votes to. This policy applies whether or not a candidate for office is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
  • Attempt to direct or dictate to a government leader.

The Church does:

  • Encourage its members to play a role as responsible citizens in their communities, including becoming informed about issues and voting in elections.
  • Expect its members to engage in the political process in an informed and civil manner, respecting the fact that members of the Church come from a variety of backgrounds and experiences and may have differences of opinion in partisan political matters.
  • Request candidates for office not to imply that their candidacy or platforms are endorsed by the Church.
  • Reserve the right as an institution to address, in a nonpartisan way, issues that it believes have significant community or moral consequences or that directly affect the interests of the Church.

Elected officials who are Latter-day Saints make their own decisions and may not necessarily be in agreement with one another or even with a publicly stated Church position. While the Church may communicate its views to them, as it may to any other elected official, it recognizes that these officials still must make their own choices based on their best judgment and with consideration of the constituencies whom they were elected to represent.

Members of the Church are free to contribute, serve on campaign committees and otherwise support candidates of their choice with the understanding they:

  • Are acting solely as individual citizens in the democratic process and that they do not imply, or allow others to infer, that their actions or support in any way represent the Church.
  • Will not use Church stationery, Church-generated address lists or email systems or Church buildings for political promotional purposes.
  • Will not engage in fundraising or other types of campaigning focused on fellow Church members under their ecclesiastical supervision.

In the most recent General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, senior Church leader, President M. Russell Ballard, remarked, “Church members—both men and women—should not hesitate, if they desire, to run for public office at any level of government wherever they live. Our voices are essential today and important in our schools, our cities, and our countries. Where democracy exists, it is our duty as members to vote for honorable men and women who are willing to serve.

For the full statement on political neutrality and other resources about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, click on the links below.

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.