“President Russell M. Nelson of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has made the following statement regarding the name of the Church:
The Lord has impressed upon my mind the importance of the name He has revealed for His Church, even The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We have work before us to bring ourselves in harmony with His will.”
“The official name of the Church is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The full name was given by revelation from God to Joseph Smith in 1838.”
KUTV reports that “The release links to an updated style guide that encourages the use of “the Church” or the “Church of Jesus Christ.” There is currently a church titled The Church of Jesus Christ, that like the LDS Church, traces its origins to Joseph Smith as a restoration church. You can visit its webiste at thechurchofjesuschrist.org/.
This is not the first time the Mormon god has decided he doesn’t like ‘Mormon’ or Mormonism’ being used to describe his church and members.
In ‘The Mormon Delusion’ Vol. 2: (May 2009) I wrote:
“This work is an exposé regarding the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Today, the Church prefers the nickname ‘LDS’ (Latter Day Saints) rather than ‘Mormon’ which was previously the case, both inside and outside the religion.”
Later, in ‘The Mormon Delusion’ Vol. 4: (Jan 2001) after repeating the above sentence in volume 4, I was obliged to add the following:
“Now, it transpires the Church has changed its view and has once again decided to embrace terms which it once found offensive. Church related web sites are now replete with references to Mormons and Mormonism. It seems that my comment that ‘the only thing consistent about Mormonism is its inconsistency’ applies to even more aspects than I imagined. Perhaps the lacklustre growth in recent years has made Church public relations advisers clutch at straws in order to try and make Mormonism more familiar to the general public; who knows?
Mormon Missionary Training Manual p.37:
“The time in which we live is referred to by Bible prophets as the last days, the latter days, or the dispensation of the fulness of times. It is the period of time just before the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. It is the final dispensation. This is why the Church is named The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”
The truth is that Joseph Smith didn’t seem able to decide what he wanted to call his new Church and his God certainly didn’t tell him what to name it when it was first inaugurated in 1830. Perhaps God didn’t yet have an opinion on it. It was informally known as the ‘Church of Christ’ during 1829 and legally instituted with that same name on 6 April 1830. It became the ‘Church of the Latter Day Saints’ in 1834. Later it was to change to the ‘Church of Jesus Christ’ and then the ‘Church of God’ before God eventually got round to giving a revelation in 1838, stating that it should be called “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.”
You may reasonably wonder why the Mormon god didn’t ‘impress upon the mind’ of Joseph Smith the name he most liked back in 1829 rather than Russell M. Nelson in 2018.