Blog Archives

An Answer for Daniel Peterson

February 28, 2014 | no comments
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Brother Peterson, You asked a question on your blog that I will answer here. Read more »

Men, Women, and Modesty

February 17, 2014 | 96 comments
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Imagine that every single talk you ever heard about missionary work was given by someone who had not served a mission or every single talk about fasting was from someone who (let’s say for health reasons) had never fasted. It is reasonable to suspect that our rhetoric about missionary work or fasting would, in these circumstances, sound very, very different. Currently, we define modesty as being (almost) solely applicable to females, and yet the discourse is (almost) entirely shaped by people who are not female. I think this has led us to several problems. Read more »

Unconditional Love

February 16, 2014 | 64 comments
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Several years ago, I read this from Elder Nelson: Read more »

Introvert Nirvana

February 15, 2014 | 15 comments
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It dawned on me today that I have achieved Introvert Nirvana in Callings Roulette:   Read more »

Guest Post: The Anthropology of Providing and Nurturing

January 31, 2014 | 57 comments
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This is a guest post from Julie Hartley-Moore, who has a Ph.D. in anthropology from Columbia University.  She taught at BYU for 9 years, was a Dean at Elgin Community College in Illinois, and is now director of the Utah State University Campus in Tooele.  She is a wife and mother of two. Read more »

A Seven-Participle Pile Up in Mark 5

January 28, 2014 | 14 comments
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Mark’s writing style is characterized by parataxis, which means that he writes really short, simple sentences and then joins them together with the word “and.” (It’s the kind of thing your elementary school teachers were always trying to get you to stop doing.) Read more »

My Beef with Goals

December 29, 2013 | 16 comments
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According to the de facto Mormon liturgical calendar, it is the time of year to talk about goal-setting. Most Mormon discussions of goals make me want to poke myself in the eyeball with a fork–a reaction I initially did not understand, since I set goals for myself all of the time. But after thinking about it for a while, I figured out a few reasons why the standard Mormon discourse on goals and goal-setting aggravates me so much. Read more »

Woohoo!

December 26, 2013 | 10 comments
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The January 2014 Friend has an Old Testament reading chart. Read more »

What the Smith Boys Said This Year

December 18, 2013 | 15 comments
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Read more »

Stewardship

November 10, 2013 | 3 comments
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Stewardship

When I was in college, I took a Shakespeare class. The text was one of those huge editions of the complete works, with lots of notes further expanding its length. Read more »

“Cannot Change”

November 7, 2013 | 93 comments
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This announcement from the newsroom (related to ENDA and a statement from Harry Reid that “the church is changing” ) contains this sentence: “As such, traditional marriage is a foundational doctrine and cannot change.” Read more »

8 & Up

November 5, 2013 | 42 comments
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The Church has announced that starting in 2014, there will be a General Women’s Meeting twice per year, with women, young women, and girls ages 8 and up invited to attend. Read more »

Conference Announcement

November 5, 2013 | no comments
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The 2013 Conference of the European Mormon Studies Association, in cooperation with the Brigham Young University London Centre, will take place on Friday 13th and Saturday 14th of December in London.  Read more »

Book Review: The Mormon Image in the American Mind

November 1, 2013 | 10 comments
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Book Review:  The Mormon Image in the American Mind

 J. B. Haws, The Mormon Image in the American Mind:  Fifty Years of Public Perception, Oxford University Press. Read more »

Upcoming Conferences

October 21, 2013 | 4 comments
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There is an embarrassment of riches on the Mormon Studies scene in the next few weeks. Read more »

Standing as Witnesses

October 8, 2013 | 30 comments
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Ronan’s post this morning reminded me of something I had written but hadn’t gotten around to posting: Read more »

The JST: A Test Case

September 25, 2013 | 13 comments
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Here’s Mark 2:14: Read more »

Reading the Gospels: A Case Study

September 22, 2013 | 4 comments
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Here’s Mark 3:13-14: Read more »

Walk This Way

August 25, 2013 | 6 comments
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Notice how similar these three passages are: Read more »

Gone Fishin’

July 23, 2013 | 11 comments
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What kind of associations does the idea of fishing raise for you?  Leisure time?  Quiet?  Peace?  Stillness?  (Hopefully not a few beers.) Read more »

Getting Dirt in Jesus’ Eyes

July 21, 2013 | 14 comments
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You are probably familiar with Mark 2:1-12, because it is hard to forget a story about a guy getting lowered through a roof. Read more »

Mythbusters: The Kneeling Camel Edition

July 14, 2013 | 28 comments
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A good portion of the next RS/PH lesson concerns the story where Jesus states that it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter God’s kingdom. Read more »

Rereading A Prayer for Owen Meany

May 13, 2013 | 11 comments
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I never re-read books, but I decided to read this one, twenty-two years after I first read it, because “he is the reason I believe in God; I am a Christian because of Owen Meany.” That’s a quote from the first sentence of the book, but it is true, literally true, for me, too.  I feel somewhat guilty that this book triggered my conversion, because it is not G-rated; in fact, it is a little crass.  It isn’t sweet and it isn’t fluffy and it criticizes religion and miracles and believers just as much as it celebrates them. But... Read more »

Book Review: L. Tom Perry: An Uncommon Life

May 5, 2013 | 11 comments
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Book Review:  L. Tom Perry:  An Uncommon Life

 L. Tom Perry:  An Uncommon Life:  Years of Preparation by Lee Tom Perry. Read more »