One of those who warmly commended the volume was Rich Mouw, president of Fuller Seminary. At the 1997 AAR meetings he and I visited for nearly an hour about the book and its aftermath. Knowing of his long-standing interest in Mormonism, and of Fuller's track record of interfaith dialogue, I suggested to him that conversations like those Robinson and I had initiated needed to be replicated on a much wider basis and that he would be an outstanding "point person" to spearhead such an undertaking. Around the same time, Greg Johnson, then in ministry at an Evangelical church in Utah, was developing a friendship with BYU religion professor Robert Millet and having many of the same kinds of conversations. They, too, shared the desire to impart the benefits of their dialogues among wider constituencies.
Again skipping over important intermediate developments, what resulted was what has now been a decade-long series of meetings between small groups of Evangelical and Latter-day Saint scholars from among the various disciplines of religious studies. When the AAR and Society of Biblical Literature (SBL) still met together, we were able to convene every year, typically during the Sunday afternoon of the national conference and then met for more extended conversations, usually over a roughly two-day period, alternating between BYU and Fuller Seminary, in early summer. Rich Mouw did indeed become the person to head up the various evangelical "delegations" and Robert Millet functioned in comparable fashion for the LDS contingents.
In recent years, conversations have taken us to Palmyra, New York, Nauvoo, Illinois, and Wheaton College. A small number of individuals have consistently participated in almost all of the gatherings and a much larger number have come and gone as their schedules and interest have dictated. Average total group size has usually been about 12-15 but perhaps as many as fifty different scholars have participated at one time or another.
Larger, public conferences, both in Utah (at BYU and several other venues) and at Fuller have also been organized by individual participants in our conversations based, at least in part, on the success of and interest generated by the more private conversations. Additionally, Johnson and Millet have re-enacted Mormon-Evangelical dialogues in dozens of settings around the country and occasionally abroad, beginning about eight years ago when Johnson founded and "Standing Together," an Evangelical Christian ministry based near Salt Lake City, with the twin goals of uniting Evangelical pastors and churches throughout the state, who often feel quite beleaguered in the midst of the Mormon "colossus," and to continue what Mouw, borrowing from George Bush, Sr., likes to call "gentler, kinder" kinds of religious conversation with Latter-day Saint friends and acquaintances both privately and in the public arena.
Additional publications have emerged from several of these various interactions, dialogues and conferences, most notably Salvation in Christ: Comparative Christian Views, a publication of the Religious Studies Center of BYU in 2005, with contributions from LDS, Evangelical, liberal Protestant, Roman Catholic, and Greek Orthodox authors; Claiming Christ: A Mormon-Evangelical Debate by Robert Millet and Gerald McDermott (Brazos, 2007) and Bridging the Divide: A Continuing Conversation between a Mormon and an Evangelical (Monkfish, 2007).