Author: Jonathan Green

Religion class

I registered my two oldest children for school on Friday. The principal needed to know which church they belonged to so that he could assign them to the proper religion class. For a first and third grader attending public school…

Language and Belief

Linguistics, the study of language’s inner workings, is a source for concepts and technical vocabulary that are also useful for thinking about religion, because language and religion are both, among other things, mental constructs for making sense of the world…

I was a Benson Scholar

Towards the end of my time at BYU, a friend mentioned to me that he knew some Benson scholars (today we would say Hinckley scholars, or more generically, presidential scholars), and that they were all stuck up and full of…

The Adjunct Life

Two years ago, I came within twenty-four hours of abandoning my academic career before it started. None of the applications I had sent out had gone anywhere, I had completed my degree, and my department had no money to keep…

Taking Aim at Mormon Folklore

There has been some recent discussion of faith-promoting stories and other Mormon folklore, including its complex relationship to factual history, the difficulty of finding an original source, and the tension that skepticism can incite. My question is: if you can…

Anabaptists II: Diverging Parallels

Despite the striking resemblance of the Mormon and Anabaptist experiences, significant differences remain. The Book of Mormon and the temple are the most obvious LDS elements without a precise Anabaptist parallel, but I’m more interested in how similar beginnings have…

Anabaptists on my Mind

Mormons are neither Catholic nor Protestant, we often hear, and I see no reason to doubt the basic truth of the statement. Is there any spectrum of Christian religions such that we can say, “Mormonism is one of the X…