Mormons, Baptists, and Christians

beth lee simon simon at HOME2.MYSOLUTION.COM
Sun Nov 7 13:45:37 UTC 1999

Another angle on the use of _Christian_ vis a vis being Catholic:
as a child, Jewish, in Des Moines IA, I heard other Jewish kids use _Christian_
to mean Protestant when distinguishing gentiles, i.e. "So and so is Christian."
"No, she's Catholic."

And sort of conversely, when my mother told me of wanting to go to the
"Christian" school as a child because her best friend did, she meant the Catholic
elementary school.

beth simon
assistant professor, linguistics and english
indiana university purdue university
simon at
simon at

RonButters at AOL.COM wrote:

> Someone writes:
> <Now, let's get back to making this a dialectal discussion> and goes on to
> discuss pronunciation of BAPTIST.
> But of course the discussion of the social differences in the meaning of the
> term CHRISTIAN is a very interesting question in social dialectology.
> Clearly, there is a certain subset of relgious persons who use the term
> CHRISTIAN to designate only persons whose particular religious views are
> very, very close to their own. Others use the term much more ecumenically.
> There is also a grey area here, because the former are often given to such
> statements as, "To be a Christian, you must accept Jesus Christ as your
> personal savior and develop a personal relationship with Jesus." But such
> statements in themselves are open to various interpretations. I would expectd
> that most devoted Catholics and Mormons feel that they accept Jesus Christ as
> their personal savior and have developed a personal relationship with Jesus.
> Does Baylor have an official policy statement that says that Mormons are not
> Christians, or is the exclusion of Mormons rather based on interpretation of
> what it means to accept Jesus Christ as your personal savior and develop a
> personal relationship with Jesus?
> This is, it seems to me, an interesting sociolinguistic questions.

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