I heard that President Uchtdorf endorses Harry Potter. I am troubled to think that an apostle would endorse Harry Potter. Is that true? Has the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints made a stance in terms of Harry Potter?
I don’t think there has been an official statement from the General Authorities about the Harry Potter books. I don’t really expect one either because they don’t really address anything that would cause concern to the doctrines and principles of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
I can understand the concern you have. I cannot recall President Uchtdorf endorsing the Harry Potter books, but it makes sense from a certain perspective. Let me explain it this way.
The world is an increasingly hostile and harmful place for children. Good examples and good influences are becoming more and more rare. The Harry Potter books do indeed contain much about the world of wizardry and witchcraft, about spells and potions, and magical powers.
However, these are not what the books are actually about. The books are fictional, and I think the audience they are targeted at understands this more than we give them credit for. It’s what the books do with this magical setting that is beyond commendable. The books teach consistently of several truths in life.
- Doing the right thing is always the right thing to do.
- Friends are important and friends help each other through even the most difficult of times.
- Sometimes children are better at making good choices than adults.
- Having a good example to follow in life is a blessing.
- Being a good example is what happens when you do the right thing because it’s the right thing to do.
- Doing the right thing is not always the easy choice.
- Honoring your parents is more important than trying to fit in, or trying to ‘be cool’ in the eyes of others.
There are others of course, but my point is that the Harry Potter books use the imagination of children to help them understand countless positive ideas and truths they otherwise may never be taught.