Andrew Bolton ‘So British Mormons were also Conscientious Objectors in WWI?’

There were four British Latter Day Saint conscientious objectors (COs) in World War I, three Mormon (LDS), and one Reorganised LDS (RLDS) – now known as Community of Christ. They were among 20,000 COs in the UK, and little known compared with Quaker or socialist COs. They also suffered hostility from neighbours and workmates. Unlike Quakers, Latter Days Saints were violent in their early history, although Community of Christ later embraced a peace mission. Initially USA church leaders of both groups were cautious and suspicious about WWI when it broke out in 1914. Things changed when the USA entered the war on April 6, 1917, ironically also Good Friday. USA church leaders then became hostile to COs. Both groups have been present in the UK for over 180 years. What is the significance today of the CO stand of these four British working-class Latter Day Saints in WWI?

Andrew Bolton is formerly a Leicester RE teacher, and coordinated peace and justice ministries for 12 years with Community of Christ at their international headquarters in Independence, Missouri, USA. He serves his local congregation in Leicester, hosts interfaith dialogue, and gardens organically on his allotment in his spare time.