Revelation: Revelation

Mormonism is by far the largest of the made-in-America religions. But its drive for respectability has had a major impediment: Mormon insistence that blacks could not be priests. The policy was sweeping, because in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, "priesthood" is not a clergy rank but a status achieved by nearly all male members.

Last week, in a terse letter issued from Salt Lake City, the church's First Presidency (President Spencer Kimball, 83, and two counselors) declared that henceforth "all worthy male members of the church may be ordained to the priesthood without regard for race or...

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