February 18, 2014 – New York – Two apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) visited AJC in New York today. The extraordinary visit marked the first time that LDS church apostles have come to AJC’s global headquarters, and follows upon a series of meetings at the LDS world headquarters in Salt Lake City last November.
During that visit the AJC delegation, led by AJC President Stanley Bergman, met with the apostles, Elders L. Tom Perry and D. Todd Christofferson, among other LDS officials, and engaged in extensive conversations aimed at advancing relations between Jews and Mormons.
Perry and Christofferson are members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, the LDS Church’s second-highest governing body, the highest being the First Presidency.
“Elders Perry and Christofferson are good friends of AJC and influential leaders of the LDS Church,” said Rabbi Noam Marans, AJC Director of Interreligious and Intergroup Relations. “We were honored to reciprocate their hospitality and engage in a spirited conversation regarding the AJC-LDS relationship and mutual concerns, including religious liberty, humanitarian disaster relief, sustaining religious identity, among others. We regularly communicate with the Church about and receive updates on the Church’s serious commitment to prevent posthumous proxy baptisms of Holocaust victims.”
The relationship with the LDS Church, a fast-growing faith group, is a priority for AJC in its pioneering interreligious work. High-level national AJC delegations visited LDS Church headquarters in August 2012 and November 2013. In addition, several AJC regional delegations have met with key LDS figures in Salt Lake City, and AJC has initiated LDS-Jewish dialogues in multiple cities across the United States.