Miscellaneous Ramblings from Leicestershire

  We've been gradually moving homewards -- both geographically, in terms of time zones, and culturally.  So, now, we're in England, where they speak English (after a fashion) and where the signs and the books are all in English.  Weird.  I've had to resist the temptation several times today to speak to car rental people and hotel clerks in either Arabic or German.  It seems quite homelike here, except, of course, for their extraordinarily bizarre habit of driving on the wrong si … [Read more...]

“Monastic Life in the Judean Wilderness”

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   The latest installment in the on-going biweekly Deseret News column by William J. Hamblin and Daniel C. Peterson went up today.  Leicester, England, United Kingdom.      … [Read more...]

Leaving Maria Alm

Evening in Maria Alm

    Well—this seems to be a recurring theme with me, lately—all good things come to an end.  We leave Maria Alm, and Austria, in just a few minutes. But, to take refuge in yet another cliché, when one door closes, another one opens.  (That’s been on my mind lately too, oddly enough.) We drive to Munich, fly to London, and then head north for a couple of hours. The first goal, to be reached, in sha’a Allah, by Sunday ni … [Read more...]

Flatly Not True

 I understand that there are several people out there in the ether (I'm betting, from long experience, that they're anonymous, though I haven't seen their statements at first hand)  claiming to have read the now notorious paper about the work of John Dehlin that the late Mormon Studies Review was instructed not to run, and claiming, further, that it attempts to tie John Dehlin to a missionary's death in Central America, or, even, to the deaths of several missionaries … [Read more...]

My Topic at Early August’s FAIR Conference

  I've changed the topic I had proposed to speak on at the FAIR Conference that will be held in Sandy, Utah, toward the beginning of August.  I'm going to address the topic "Of 'Mormon Studies' and Apologetics."  Maria Alm, Austria. … [Read more...]

With My Father, in Spirit, Along the Traunsee

Medieval Schloss Ort, on the Traunsee, on the outskirts of Gmunden

  We drove today from Maria Alm back over to Bischofshofen and up past Salzburg—we had a couple of excellent views of Festung Hohensalzburg (the landmark castle that looms over the city) in the distance, but that’s as close as we came—to Gmunden, at the northern end of the Traunsee. At the end of the Second World War, Gmunden’s city hall became the headquarters of the Eleventh Armored Division of General George C. Patton’s Third Army.  Attached to the Eleventh A … [Read more...]

Sic transit gloria mundi

In the distance, a small castle, in Kaprun, near Zell am See, in Salzburgerland

  At one point in Goethe’s great philosophical play Faust, the title character is so smitten with a particular moment that he begs it not to leave:  Verweile doch, he implores, du bist so schön.  “Please stay.  You are so beautiful.” It’s one of the most famous lines in all of German literature, and I think I know why: There are moments, scenes, happenings, that are so wonderful that we want to keep them, to make them ours in a way that they sad … [Read more...]

What I’m Up To Here

 I'm traveling in an area and staying in places where Internet access typically costs, and costs dearly.  That fact, coupled with the fact that I'm unfamiliar with Patheos procedures -- I only moved this blog to Patheos a few hours before I left North America and entered regions of expensive and iffy access -- means that I'm getting only intermittent glimpses at comments, etc.  I'll do better when I return, and I apologize in the meantime. I did see one comment, though, t … [Read more...]


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