"I have been listening to you on EWTN for about a year now. I left the Catholic Church 42 years ago. After many struggles during this last year, I finally went to confession on Sunday. I cannot begin to explain how excited I am to be home. Thank you so much for helping me on my journey home."
In these "latter days," there are few people who haven’t been visited at least once by Mormon missionaries. At some point in your doorstep dialogue, these earnest young men will ask you to accept a copy of the Book of Mormon, read it, and pray about it, asking the Lord to "send the Holy Ghost to witness that it is true." Then, very solemnly, they’ll "testify" to you that they know theBook of Mormon is true, that it’s God’s inspired word, and that it contains the "fullness of the everlasting gospel."
The first step toward being able to go to a Mormon temple is an interview with the "ward bishop" (roughly equivalent to a parish priest). During this interview a Mormon is questioned by the bishop to see if he has been faithful in his commitment to the teachings and ordinances of the Mormon church.
In your discussions with Mormons, they will most often wish to direct the topics presented into those areas where they feel most informed and comfortable. Whether they are the young missionaries at your door or friends or colleagues, they have all been taught several lines of approach and have been drilled in making their points.
George Orwell, in his novel 1984, did Catholic apologists a great favor by coining the term "doublethink," which he defined as "the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them." It’s the most succinct way of describing certain religious beliefs. For an illustration of doublethink one need look no further than the Mormon church’s doctrines about God.
The sect known as Jehovah’s Witnesses (JWs) began with Charles Taze Russell in the 1870’s. Russell was raised a Presbyterian, then joined the Congregational church, and was finally influenced by Adventist teachings. By his own admission, he had a hard time accepting the existence of hell. He sought out the Bible, and as his "studies" continued, he systematically began to reject the major doctrines of historic Christianity. He ultimately established his own belief system, and in 1879 he started publishing a magazine to promote his beliefs.
"I protest that I do not intend to assert or determine anything that has not been manifestly determined by Sacred Scripture or by the authority of the Church. Wherefore I submit all I have said or shall say to the correction of Holy Mother Church and of all learned men."