Holocaust survivors said they are through trying to negotiate with the Mormon church over posthumous baptisms of Jews killed in Nazi concentration camps, saying the church has repeatedly violated a 13-year-old agreement barring the practice. Leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints say they are making changes to their massive genealogical database to make it more difficult for names of Holocaust victims to be entered for posthumous baptism by proxy, a rite that has been a common Mormon practice for more than a century.
But Ernest Michel, honorary chairman of the American Gathering of Holocaust Survivors, said that is not enough. "We ask you to respect us and our Judaism just as we respect your religion," Michel said in a statement. "We ask you to leave our six million Jews, all victims of the Holocaust, alone, they suffered enough." Posthumous baptism by proxy allows faithful Mormons to have their ancestors baptized into the 178-year-old church, which they believe reunites families in the afterlife.
[washingtonpost.com, "Jewish Group Exhorts Mormons"; A chronicle of the Mormon-Jewish controversy; The LDS Agreement: A JewishGen InfoFile, http://www.jewishgen.org/infofiles/ldsagree.html]