Times and Seasons: Safe Once More

Having finally come to their senses, Times and Seasons has returned me once again (this is the third time) to their list of personae non gratae. I’m back on their moderation queue, instituting a de facto ban on my commenting there. Read more »

The Church and Nuclear Energy

The other day I paid a visit to our friends at Times and Seasons, and I noticed that on their sidebar, Adam G. had linked to a story he called Renewable Nature Wreckers.   I found the link unfortunate for two reasons: 1) the article was yet another laughable attempt to debunk the feasibility of renewable energy by using false dilemmas that don’t account for siting or the pace of innovation, and 2) it always saddens me to see otherwise smart people who I respect supporting this kind of commentary.  In May 2006, the issue of nuclear energy made headlines in Utah as a firm called Private Fuel Storage was seeking to create a site for the storage of nuclear waste in Tooele County, Utah.  The Church took the rare step of weighing in on this issue, and the First Presidency’s statement is found here: Read more »

My Audience with the Prophet

A couple months ago at the Mormon History Association conference in Salt Lake City, I had the privilege of meeting the prophet Frederick Neils Larson, the president of the Remnant Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Read more »

Best. Birthday. Present. Ever.

I did it.

It was and it wasn’t what I was expecting.

Yet even as I continue sorting out my feelings about it, I find myself breaking into an ear-to-ear grin.

Perhaps I’d better back up a bit. Read more »

Orson Pratt Blows My Mind: I

Jesus prayed to His Father, and taught His Disciples to do likewise; but we are nowhere taught that Jesus prayed to His heavenly Mother; neither did he pray to the Holy Ghost as His Father. If He were begotten by the Holy Ghost, then He would have called him His Father; but, instead of doing so, the Holy Ghost himself was subject unto Jesus; and He had power to send him as His minister after he returned to his Father.

The Seer, 1:10 (September 1853) 159.

To be followed by future installments of the Orson Pratt Blows My Mind series.

Doctor, My Eyes

I got my eyeballs fixed exactly one week ago, and it’s utterly astonishing to be able to see perfectly without corrective lenses. I’ve turned out being much happier about the results than I thought I’d be.

It’s going to be weeks before I grow accustomed to being able to see without the contacts or glasses that I’ve needed since I was 16. In fact, it felt pretty weird to throw away my glasses, because I still think of them as useful to me.

Read more »

ACLU Sues on behalf of LDS Missionary and Student

A family member forwarded me an article about David Isaac Haws, a West Virginia University student.  He was awarded a college scholarship.  He completed one year of college with a 4.0 GPA with the plan of then serving a mission and returning to school.  He requested a deferment of his scholarship during his mission.  The scholarship board exercised its discretion and refused his request.  I’m not sure if his constitutional rights were violated or not, but I’m also pleased that the ACLU is supporting his right to exercise his religion.  I think most LDS would be shocked to see the organization suing on behalf of a Mormon.

I’m a bit shocked that the scholarship board would be so stubborn about this.  I’m under the impression that most universities are very accommodating when it comes to missions.  As the person that forwarded this to me said, “Even godless Cornell held my scholarship without even thinking about it.”

Anyone want to take a bet on whether West Virginia University would hold a scholarship for a football player?

Understanding President Boyd K. Packer

Since I first began my participation in the Bloggernacle a couple of years ago, I have heard a lot of references to Boyd K. Packer, and I would say off the top of my head that probably most of those references have not been favorable.  I don’t think many of us are openly hostile to him, but I think a lot of people are uncomfortable with his style and what they perceive as his dogmatic approach to issues that require more nuanced treatment. Read more »

The Temple Ceremony: Coming to a Theater Near You

Have you seen the trailer for the upcoming movie September Dawn, which purports to be “inspired by actual events” surrounding the Mountain Meadows Massacre? You can see it here in Quicktime on Apple’s web site.

Watch the trailer closely. It portrays elements of the temple ceremony: Read more »

Tisha B’Av

Beginning at sunset tonight and ending at sunset tomorrow is Tisha B’Av. Read more »

The Nonsensical Order of Things

In my current ward, women are not allowed to give the opening prayer in sacrament meeting. Read more »

All Things Harry Potter

The release of the final Harry Potter book has certainly been some kind of phenomenon. It’s been interesting to see the reactions to the book both on and offline. Read more »

Mormon Matters Podcast

I recently participated for the first time as a panelist in an episode of John Dehlin’s groundbreaking weekly podcast, Mormon Matters. In it, we discuss the Pope’s recent statement about the exclusive authority of the Catholic Church by virtue of apostolic succession and the back-and-forth between Barak Obama and Mitt Romney on sex education for children. In a second part that will be released later this week, we discuss the tension between presiding and equality in marital relationships and raising gay children in the church.

For those of you who haven’t listened to Mormon Matters, you really should. John Dehlin does a terrific job moderating these weekly talk shows, which gather a broad spectrum of opinion about a variety of Mormon issues — ranging from the timely to the timeless.

In case you don’t know how podcasts work, here’s instructions:

Read more »

Uncle Warren Jeffs

This is the text of an FLDS primary song.


Truth, Lies, and Engagement Stories

Don’t you think the truth is sometimes overrated? Everyone knows, of course, that the Church, Joseph Smith, Gordon B. Hinckley (the “B” is mandatory), the Republican Party, Especially for Youth (for teens), and roommates (for BYU students), are all true. And that’s all well and good. But what about truth when it comes to how one went about offering a proposal for marriage?

Read more »


This evening I went to a stake priesthood meeting. The first speaker’s purpose was to announce and explain a new website: HireASaint.org Read more »

Mormons & Our Obsession With Reproduction

A couple of weeks ago, I was talking to a woman in our ward at Church (someone I know fairly well, although not a close friend). I was holding our 20 month old son and she said, “He sure needs a sibling. When are you going to have another one?” This set me back a bit and I said we would love to have a second at some point in the near future. She then followed up with “Are you trying?” I was then really taken aback, although not surprised given I have had this type of grilling many times in Church (as I am sure many others have). What really startled me is that she has no idea if we have had a hard time conceiving or not, and to ask such a question can be very insensitive, hurtful and rude. I was nice in my response as I know she meant no harm in her questioning.
Read more »

The Mormons: Second Chance for Utahns

If you missed the PBS documentary The Mormons the first time around, KUED (channel 7 in Utah) is rebroadcasting part 1 tonight (July 11) at 8pm and part 2 tomorrow at 8pm.  If you don’t live in Utah you can watch online or even buy the DVD.

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Resolved: That You Should All See Greg Whiteley’s New Film

Recently it was my pleasure to see the documentary film RESOLVED at the L.A. Film Festival. RESOLVED is the latest film from Greg Whiteley, the director of NEW YORK DOLL, and it’s further proof that Whiteley deserves praise not only as a pioneering Mormon filmmaker, but as pioneering documentarian, period. Read more »

Marketing Chutzpah

Update: I didn’t realize it when I wrote this post, but J. Max Wilson beat me to the punch … here’s his “Dutcher Advertising Opportunism?” post.


Below is an excerpt from an email I’ve received two days in a row: Read more »

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