Open Strong Exercise

Essay in need of a Strong Opening

Anne Frank, the Jewish girl whose diary and death in a Nazi concentration camp made her a symbol of the Holocaust, was allegedly baptized posthumously Saturday by a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, according to whistleblower Helen Radkey, a former member of the church. The ritual was conducted in a Mormon temple in the Dominican Republic, according to Radkey, a Salt Lake City researcher who investigates such incidents, which violate a 2010 pact between the Mormon Church and Jewish leaders.

Radkey discovered that Annelies Marie “Anne” Frank, who died at Bergen Belsen death camp in 1945 at age 15, was baptized by proxy on Saturday. Mormons have submitted versions of her name at least a dozen times for proxy rites and carried out the ritual at least nine times from 1989 to 1999. This time, Frank’s name was discovered in a database that can be used for proxy baptism — a separate process, according to a spokesman for the church. The database is open only to Mormons.

A screen shot of the database shows a page for Frank stating “completed” next to categories labeled “Baptism” and “Confirmation,” with the date Feb. 18, 2012, and the name of the Santo Domingo Dominican Republic Temple.

Mormon posthumous proxy baptisms for Holocaust victims or Jews who are not direct descendants of Mormons has continued, despite church vows to stop such practices. Negotiations between Mormon and Jewish leaders led to a 1995 agreement for the church to stop the posthumous baptism of all Jews, except in the case of direct ancestors of Mormons, but some Mormons have failed to adhere to the agreement.

The name of Nobel Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel was recently submitted to the restricted genealogy website as “ready” for posthumous proxy baptism, though the church says the rite is reserved for the deceased, and Wiesel is alive. Wiesel, a Holocaust survivor, was among a group of Jewish leaders who campaigned against the practice and prompted the 2010 pact by which the Mormon Church promises to at least prevent proxy baptism requests for Holocaust victims.

Wiesel last week called on Republican presidential candidate and Mormon Mitt Romney, a former Mormon bishop who has donated millions to the church, to speak out about the practice. The Romney campaign did not immediately reply.  The Frank case follows closely on an apology from the Mormon Church last week for recent posthumous baptisms of Nazi hunter Simon Wiesenthal’s parents.

The latest baptism of Frank by proxy is especially egregious because she was an unmarried teenager who left no descendants. Mormon officials have stressed that in accordance with the agreements, church members are supposed to submit only the names of their own ancestors.

“The security of the names submissions process for posthumous rites must be questioned, in view of the rash of prominent Jewish Holocaust names that have recently appeared on Mormon temple rolls,” Radkey said about her latest find. “This one sailed straight through, with Anne’s correct name in their ‘secure’ database.”

Radkey said she expects, once word gets out, that church officials will scrub the records as they did with Wiesel and Weisenthal’s parents. The Mormon Church responded later Tuesday in a statement: “The Church keeps its word and is absolutely firm in its commitment to not accept the names of Holocaust victims for proxy baptism. While no system is foolproof in preventing the handful of individuals who are determined to falsify submissions we are committed to taking action against individual abusers who willfully violate the Church’s policy. Ritual baptism should be understood to be an offering based on love and respect; we regret when it becomes a source of contention.”

Exercise Specifics

In the Reply field below this post, write your strongest Opening Paragraph.

Your paragraph must contain a thesis sentence that clearly and boldly proclaims the claim you promise readers you will prove.

In addition, your Opening Paragraph will:

  1. Will make strong, perhaps paradoxical claims.
  2. Will sum up a very strong argument your essay will make.
  3. Will NOT LOSE the argument.
  4. Will itself be an arugment.
  5. Will be memorable.
  6. Will be debatable, demonstatable, illustratable.
  7. Will be a good example of itself.

Well, maybe it won’t accomplish all 7 goals, but the more the better!

You have until the end of the day to write your best first draft.

Author: davidbdale

Inventor of and sole practitioner of 299-word Very Short Novels.

15 thoughts on “Open Strong Exercise”

  1. Anne Frank was recent baptized posthumously by a church in the Dominican Republic. Frank was a young, Jewish girl was killed in Holocaust. Her diary is very famous today, it illustrates the struggles of that she faced, and is a symbol of the Holocaust. The baptizism which happened at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, violated a 2010 pact between the Mormon Church and Jewish leaders. Helen Radkey is a former member of the church, and a Salt Lake City researcher who investigates these types of incidents.


  2. It is a common practice of the Mormon Church to conduct posthumous proxy baptisms, but outrage sparked when records were released showing the proxy baptism of prominent Holocaust victim, Anne Frank. Many argued this idea was extremely offensive to the Jewish community. Multiple attempts have been made to settle this dispute between the Jewish and Mormon communities over time, eventually coming to a conclusion in which the Mormon Church stated that they would not conduct proxy baptisms on Holocaust victims. This agreement was made out of respect for the Jewish faith. However, the settlement has been violated multiple times in a variety of ways. These actions show some Mormons’ disregard for the wishes of the Jewish community in relation to a horrifically tragic time period, the Holocaust. The disrespect being shown by members of the Mormon Church by conducting posthumous proxy baptisms on Holocaust victims, such as Anne Frank, is deplorable.


  3. Isn’t is time that we do the right thing and put Anne Frank to rest? In 2012, the iconic name of the Holocaust, popped up on a Mormon database saying that Anne Frank has been posthumously baptized by a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This started up a lot of tension involving the Mormon and Jewish religion since it violates a pact that was made back in 2010. The Mormon church was not to posthumously baptize people who aren’t direct ancestors to them, and that includes some of the people who lost their lives in the Holocaust. The Mormon church is stepping on toes and starting a riot sprinkled with disrespect for those who have passed over, disregarding the original pact of ancestors only. This needs to stop in oder to put to rest the names it is now effecting.


  4. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has the right to conduct a ritual to baptize people by proximity, but they did it to the wrong person. They violated a pact between the Mormon Church and Jewish leaders and baptized Anne Frank, who is a jewish girl, that died for her beliefs.


  5. Baptisms have always been a debatable topic, as some churches baptize kids at birth and others accept baptisms whenever the faith is accepted. Recently, the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, has baptized a dead person. Anne Frank, a deceased girl who was a symbol of the holocaust, was recently baptized by a mormon church in the dominican republic. This angered jewish leaders, as much of what was done can be seen as an offense to their religion.


  6. Until today if a person has passed away without being baptized their was no hope for their soul. But there have been reports of a Mormon temple doing posthumously baptisms to their ancestors. the church rules states that they must be an ancestors the member of the church in order to proceed with the ceremony. Another rule that is clearly stated since 2010, no holocaust survivors will be allowed in this ceremony. But members have been trying for years to have Annie Frank baptized posthumously. As more people found there has been more debate over this issue.


  7. The Mormon church’s practice of posthumous baptism justifiably outrageous observers from other religious institutions…


  8. Mormons and jewish leaders have the power to to continue these practices dispite the directions they were told. Mormans want these baptisims to stop unless they are direct decendents from mormans themselves. The baptist if Anne Frank was the most egregious because she was and unmarried teenager who left no decendents. The church members fear for their reputations because the church members are supposed to submit only the names of their own ancestors. And once word gets out they fear their names being scrubbed.


  9. In most cases, baptisms are usually held for young children or adults who want assurance from Jesus Christ. Shockingly, baptisms can be held after death which is called posthumously. This practice by Mormon churches for Holocaust victims is absurd…. End of class, will reply later to finish


  10. Anne Frank the Jewish 15 year old girl died in the Nazi concentration camp, she left behind a diary with every detail she went through on her journey.
    *need to finish


  11. At the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, they can have people who helped society and shape history, who have already died become baptized. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who have baptized Anne Frank. One of the most commonly known symbols of the Holocaust is Anne Frank. Anne Frank was a girl who was Jewish who died at a Nazi concentration camp over her religous beliefs.


  12. Anne Frank the 15 year old girl who was brave ,mature & delightful died in the hands of the Nazi Officials. The outrage of the Moorman’s is not justifiable & is not apart of the Jewish etiquette. Anne was not of the Mormon descent and should have been just left alone and not disturbed as she was bothered for the last ending of her short life !


  13. Religious belief should be kept intact even after death. Anne Frank died knowing her religion, in the eyes of the Nazis, was seen as disgusting. Yet, Anne Frank held on tight to her Jewish faith, despite efforts to take that away from her. Now, years after her death Mormons are trying to take her religion away from her yet again.

    Coming back to fix


  14. Do we need to bother the dead; is baptism necessary for the dead to be freed? In fact the mormons and almost every other religion do believe in baptism and say without it no one will live in peace in the afterlife. The mormons believe that proxy baptism is another way for someone to live in peace in the afterlife even though they have already died. For example the “Mormons have submitted versions of her name at least a dozen times for proxy rites and carried out the ritual at least nine times from 1989 to 1999.” This process was done for Anne Frank to live in peace in the afterlife but this is outraging why do we need to bother the dead with these proxies and instead we should let her be in peace for what she did, and we must respect and honor her.


  15. Lets let the dead be dead. For the most part, the person getting baptized never actually gives consent to being baptized, but baptizing someone after there dead is another issue. In 2012, Anne Frank was posthumously baptize by the Church of Jesus Christ. Most babies can not speak for themselves on whether or not they want to be baptized, but their parents do. Anne Frank had no descendants, therefore no one gave the Mormons the right to baptize her.


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