Mormons apologize for posthumous Jewish baptism

2012-02-14T16:00:00Z 2012-02-14T16:31:33Z Mormons apologize for posthumous Jewish baptismThe Associated Press The Associated Press
February 14, 2012 4:00 pm  • 

SALT LAKE CITY - Mormon church leaders apologized to the family of Holocaust survivor and Jewish rights advocate Simon Wiesenthal after his parents were posthumously baptized, a controversial ritual that Mormons believe allows deceased people a way to the afterlife but offends members of many other religions.

Wiesenthal died in 2005 after surviving the Nazi death camps and spending his life documenting Holocaust crimes and hunting down perpetrators who remained at large.

Jews are particularly offended by an attempt to alter the religion of Holocaust victims, who were murdered because of their religion, and the baptism of Holocaust survivors was supposed to have been barred by a 1995 agreement.

Yet records indicate Wiesenthal's parents, Asher and Rosa Rapp Wiesenthal, were baptized in proxy ceremonies performed by Mormon church members at temples in Arizona and Utah in late January.

The church apologized, saying it was the actions of an individual member of church - whom they did not name - that led to the submission of Wiesenthal's name.

Read more in Wednesday's Arizona Daily Star and StarNet.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Download Flash Player

What's hot

Get weekly ads via e-mail

Follow the Arizona Daily Star

Tucson.com newsletters

Sign up for Tucson.com e-mail newsletters

Sports news and blog headlines, delivered nightly.

Midmorning update of local business headlines, daily.

Tucson-area obituaries, daily.

Receive the current day's weather forecast in your email!