Without any effort to contextualize or indigenize the LDS Church in Aotearoa/New Zealand, Māori are often asked to accept ways of being that get imported from Utah. This ‘Utah’ worldview is presented to LDS Māori as the way Jesus Christ would do things. This is called the ‘Gospel Culture.’
But the effect of the ‘Gospel Culture’ is to alienate Māori from those ways of being that support Māori well-being. This lack of interest in Māori ways of being Mormon bears all of the hallmarks of religious and spiritual colonization.
Dr. Byron Rangiwai, Dr. Nepia Mahuika and TeRata Hikairo discuss LDS Church practices, policies and discipline through the lens of Tikanga Māori.