The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association confirmed on Tuesday that it had removed all references to Mormonism as a “cult” from its website after their founder announced his support of Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney.
The New Civil Rights Movement first noticed last week that “Mormons” had disappeared from the list of groups that were considered cults shortly following Graham’s promise to Romney that that he would “do all I can to help you.”
“A cult is any group which teaches doctrines or beliefs that deviate from the biblical message of the Christian faith,” the website reportedly said prior to last week. “It is very important that we recognize cults and avoid any involvement with them. Cults often teach some Christian truth mixed with error, which may be difficult to detect.”
“Some of these groups are Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormons, the Unification Church, Unitarians, Spiritists, Scientologists, and others,” the site warned.
In a statement published by The Washington Post on Wednesday, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association chief of staff Ken Barun explained the decision to scrub the website.
“Our primary focus at the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association has always been promoting the Gospel of Jesus Christ,” Barun said. “We removed the information from the website because we do not wish to participate in a theological debate about something that has become politicized during this campaign.”
Graham’s statement supporting Romney, however, didn’t seem to shy away from social issues because they had “become politicized during this campaign.”
“It was a privilege to pray with Gov. Romney—for his family and our country,” the 93-year-old evangelist said. “I hope millions of Americans will join me in praying for our nation and to vote for candidates who will support the biblical definition of marriage, protect the sanctity of life and defend our religious freedoms.”
David Edwards has served as an editor at Raw Story since 2006. His work can also be found at Crooks & Liars, and he's also been published at The BRAD BLOG. He came to Raw Story after working as a network manager for the state of North Carolina and as as engineer developing enterprise resource planning software. Follow him on Twitter at @DavidEdwards.
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