best-of-2012

20 Reasons Why 2012 Was The Coolest Year To Be A Mormon

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was in the spotlight all year long. Will it ever be as cool to be a Mormon as it was in 2012?

1. Mitt Romney became the first Mormon nominated for president by a major political party.

Mark Wilson / Getty Images

2. Jon Huntsman ran for president too.

Alex Wong / Getty Images

3. Sacramento Kings player Jimmer Fredette married his college girlfriend and former BYU cheerleader Whitney Wonnacott. It was like BYU’s Royal Wedding.

4. Jon Stewart had some Mormons on his show. Like Joanna Brooks, author of “The Book of Mormon Girl.”

5. And some black Mormons.

“However which way you guys vote, you guys are going to win (the election). But then you’re definitely all going to lose too.”

6. Bryce Harper, a Nevada Mormon who works in D.C. as an outfielder for the Washington Nationals, called a reporter’s question about what his favorite beer is a “clown question.”

7. Democratic Sen. Harry Reid, a Nevada Mormon who works in D.C. as the Senate majority leader, called a reporter’s question about Republicans and immigration reform a “clown question.”

8. Jabari Parker became the 13th high school athlete to be on the cover of Sports Illustrated.

The last guy to do it was Bryce Harper.

9. Joel Osteen, pastor of the largest non-denominational Christian congregation in the United States, told Wolf Blitzer he believes Mormons are “brothers in Christ.”

10. Bloomberg Businessweek faced criticism for this magazine cover, with one media analyst saying it “crosses way over the line between commentary and bigotry.”

11. The Church lowered the age young men can serve missions from 19 to 18.

12. And they lowered the age young women can serve missions from 21 to 19.

Applications to serve LDS missions increased 472 percent following the age requirement change.

13. The Church created a website that called for treating gays and lesbians with compassion. It also stated sexuality was not a choice.

14. NBC aired “Mormon In America” on Rock Center with Brian Williams.

15. The Church launched a Christmas ad campaign in New York City.

16. And they bought ad space in playbills for The Book of Mormon musical.

17. The Killers’ lead singer Brandon Flowers kept getting asked questions about Mormonism while he was promoting the band’s new album.

18. American Idol runner-up David Archuleta put his singing career on hold to go on a mission.

19. And a picture of him singing in the Church’s semi-annual General Conference made it into Rolling Stone magazine.

20. But most importantly, a video of Ryan Gosling singing and dancing at a Mormon talent show as a kid was uploaded to YouTube.

21. BONUS: It might have happened in 2011, but there was that one time Anderson Cooper defended Mormonism from being called a cult.

22. BONUS: And also that one time P. Diddy tweeted a quote by L. Tom Perry, a member of the Church’s Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. It was at the very end of 2011, but it was also very neat.

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