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date: 23 July 2018

Abstract and Keywords

Despite efforts by missionaries to evangelize Asia in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the first lasting conversions came after the Second World War. This article examines the efforts of and challenges faced by Latter-day Saint missionaries in Asia, especially Japan, China, and South Korea. The durable spiritual traditions of Asia—Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism—as well as the difficulties of learning Asian languages, have limited the success of proselytizing. Finding acceptable translations for unfamiliar Christian terms and effectively rendering LDS scriptures into the Asian languages have been additional obstacles. Equally daunting are Asian attitudes toward organized religion versus individual spirituality, the challenge of creating a sense of Asian identity within the LDS Church, and the attitudes of Asian peoples toward their revered ancestors.

Keywords: Japan, China, South Korea, ancestors, Asian identity, language barriers, proselytizing, scripture translations

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