We Have Authority Issues

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"Why doesn't the Church speak out in favor of the Affordable Care Act or universal healthcare?"The above question, or some variation of it, has come up in twice in recent months on liberal or Democratic Mormon Facebook groups that I belong to.They could, but they won't. Not because they cannot do so, though advocating for specific legislation is dangerous territory. Instead, the Church is not going to step into a political battle which has partisan overtones...that has already been … [Read more...]

Teaching the Gospel in Our Homes: My Sermon

Shem (11), Todd (13), Geneva (7), and Lyndee

Today, I gave a sermon about teaching the gospel in our homes. The talk touched on Rawls, King Benjamin from the Book of Mormon, my Chevy Suburban, and lots of cutestories about my beautiful and amazing children.Lyndee spoke first and I make a few references to her talk.Take a listen to the talk here.Or here: Podcast Powered By PodbeanI am sharing this talk as part of the Passing on the Faith: … [Read more...]

John Stuart Mill on Mormon Polygamy

I am putting together a conference paper proposal about John Stuart Mill's treatment of Mormon polygamy in his classic "On Liberty." As I do that, I want to share with you the passages that I am considering.The forth chapter of John Stuart Mill's 1869 "On Liberty" starts with the following questions: WHAT, then, is the rightful limit to the sovereignty of the individual over himself? Where does the authority of society begin? How much of human life should be assigned to individuality, and … [Read more...]

“…we are Mormons. We do not kill people or animals.”

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"Shem, we are Mormons. We do not kill people or animals," said Geneva (7) to her brother Shem (11) as we passed a creepy gun shop near our new home in Las Vegas which invites all to come and try out machine guns on the shooting range.We laughed at the super-serious tone which Geneva took. She is prone to lecturing her brothers on a range of issues. However, it warmed my heart to hear her begin to develop a social outlook which emphasizes non-violence.Now if only she applied this when … [Read more...]

Another Liberal at Church!! (Adventures in Sunday School)

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We are loving our time here in Las Vegas. In addition to the abundance of In-N-Out Hamburger locations, we are very much loving our LDS congregation here in Vegas. They turned out in large numbers to unload our U-Haul. They have warmly greeted us on Sunday, stopped by our home to bring us peaches or to welcome our children, and they made us feel most welcomed and included at the Pioneer Day breakfast we attended yesterday. As you may know, I have a certain fascination with bumper … [Read more...]

No Liberals Here! (Adventures in Sunday School)

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Okay, it might be an exaggeration to call anything that happens at church an adventure. We will stick with the series title "Adventures in Sunday School" nonetheless. This is the start of series about the experiences of a theological and political liberal in a conservative church.On Sunday, my son (13) was told in Sunday School that he and his classmates were lucky that they did not grow up around liberals.These are the type of things my son loves sharing with mom and dad on the … [Read more...]

Are Mormons Protestants?

Should Mormons be categorized as Protestants?The 2012 Casper College Humanities Festival focused on the topic of sin. One of the main events was a panel on the issue of sin from the perspective of different religions. Their was a Catholic Priest, a Jewish Rabbi, and a Mormon Bishop.No, they did not walk into a bar.I was part of a group of faculty and students that tweeted the event. One of the students, Micah, was a member of the debate team and the son of a Lutheran minister in … [Read more...]


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