Small band of Mormons register their opposition to church leaders, say 'all is not well in Zion'

For the first time in decades, a small band of Mormons who disagree with their church stood during the semi-annual General Conference on Saturday and publicly shouted "opposed" to sustaining the top Mormon leaders.

At least seven people rose in dissent as part of an action by a loosely organized group calling itself "Any Opposed?"

Carter: Religion, politics getting too cozy

SALT LAKE CITY -- For a man who evangelized foreign leaders and taught Sunday school while U.S. president, Jimmy Carter has some strong words for what he sees as an “excessive melding of religion and politics.”

And it began, he said, with the denomination he called home for more than seven decades: the Southern Baptist Convention.

“It’s now metastasized to other religions, where an actual affiliation between the denomination and the more conservative elements of the Republican Party is almost official,” Carter said during a stop here to promote his new book, White House Diary.

“There are pastors openly calling for members to vote a certain way,” the 86-year-old ex-president said. “That’s a serious breakdown in the principle of separation of church and state.”

Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, left the Southern Baptists in 2000 after the denomination’s long shift toward conservative politics and new doctrinal statements that are, in Carter’s view, more creed-based and anti-woman. But the couple remain Baptists and worship at Maranatha Baptist Church when they are home in Plains, Ga.