NOTE: DO NOT READ THIS IF YOU INTEND TO MOCK OR ABUSE ME AND/OR MY CHURCH. IF YOU CAN HOLD AN INTELLIGENT AND REASONABLE DISCUSSION, GO AHEAD.
Hi, I'm LDS and have only just noticed this thread.
For those people who are using this to make racist attacks against Mormons, shame on you, how is it acting any better? Does it feel good to mock and put down people of differing beliefs?
Now as to the Priesthood issue, there have been restrictions on it ever since it has been on the face of the earth. Sometimes, such as until the Chruch was restored, the ban was general on all men. At other times, the ban has been narrow. I do not know why it was lifted in 1978 but before that they could still be members of the church, that was never denied them. What's important, getting get it first or last, as long as you get it?
President Kimball was inspired to ask about it and he prayed in the Temple for weeks to receive an answer.
In 1978 the general ban was lifted, but a few select individuals recieved it as early as 1976.
Bruce R. McConkie in his 'Mormon Doctrine' from 1966 writes that Ham was cursed for marrying into the line of Cain, which had been forbidden since the murder of Abel. As a result of the curse, his descendants could not receive the Priesthood. Not a racist doctrine by any means, but one based on personal transgression. Ham knew of the ban and despite that went ahead with his marriage. His descendants can recieve it now, and retroactively, through Baptism for the Dead.
Susu, I don't know why your father changed his mind, but thats the reason for the ban.
Lots of Mormons have/are racists, but that's them, not any official doctrine. Besides, it fits in with the general mood of racism in the US until the 60s.
As Pogo suggests, read more of the LDS materials, and pray and ponder over them. That is the only way you will get a true answer. If it's not true you will know for certain, and if it is then what's to be afraid of.
Diana Ross is not now, nor has ever been LDS as far as I am aware. Gladys Knight on the other hand is, written a book too.
Peter K, how can you say that such things would never have happened if it werren't for religion? As long as wicked people are around such things will happen regardless of any religion. The religion was just the excuse, not the cause of it.