Mormon leader dies at 90
by Evan Wilt
Posted 1/03/18, 12:23 pm
Thomas S. Monson, president of the Mormon religion, died Tuesday night. He was 90 years old. Monson died surrounded by family in his Salt Lake City home, according to Mormon spokesman Eric Hawkins. Monson was a Mormon leader for more than 50 years, assuming the top leadership role in 2008. Monson helped maintain the religion’s belief in traditional marriage: In 2008, he prompted Mormons to support a ballot initiative in California that defined marriage as being between one man and one woman. His decision provoked same-sex marriage proponents to vandalize Mormon buildings and picket outside of Mormon temples across the country. In 2015, Monson disallowed Mormon baptisms for children living with same-sex parents and implemented a requirement for Mormons to disavow homosexual relationships before being allowed to serve in missions. Under Monson, the religion’s membership grew to nearly 16 million, with many members coming from outside of the United States. The next president was not immediately named, but 93-year-old Russell M. Nelson is expected to take the position. Monson’s wife died in 2013. His three children and their families survive him.
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Evan is a reporter for WORLD Digital based in Washington, D.C.