“Muslim man’s photo of prayer in LDS church is going viral”

    http://kutv.com/news/local/muslim-mans-photo-of-prayer-in-lds-church-is-going-viral   I’ve been involved in many interfaith meetings held in LDS meetinghouses — in the United States and abroad — where, when the time came for Islamic salat prayers, a room was made available for the Muslims involved to pray.   This has always seemed to me (and, plainly, also to the local [Read More…]

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A very merry very secular Christmas!

    A thought for the season from the most prominent English-speaking atheist of the twentieth century:   That Man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations [Read More…]

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“The Mother in Heaven and Her Children”

    The prolific non-LDS British biblical scholar Margaret Barker spoke to the annual FairMormon conference last August.  Her remarks are available here:   http://www.fairmormon.org/perspectives/fair-conferences/2015-fairmormon-conference/the-mother-in-heaven-and-her-children   Along with the Catholic philosopher Stephen Webb, she also spoke as part of a panel to a small gathering of Interpreter Foundation volunteers and supporters, and a video tape [Read More…]

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The United States Air Force Band as a flash mob at the Smithsonian

    This is fun, and very much in the Christmas spirit:   https://www.youtube.com/embed/-cKE8pyfcZc   In fact, how does a federally-sponsored operation like this get away with performing such an overtly Christian piece?  Shouldn’t they be restricted to “Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire” and “Frosty the Snowman”?     [Read more…]

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“Why I left Mormonism behind for Judaism — and couldn’t be happier”

    Does anybody else find certain elements of this story . . . well, um, strange and somewhat suspicious?   http://fusion.net/story/225505/leaving-the-mormon-church-converting-to-judaism/     [Read more…]

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“Will Ken Niumatalolo stay at Navy or jump ship for BYU?”

    Forget the presidential race, the threat of radical Islamist terrorism, global warming, and other such trivia.  This, so far as I can tell, is one of the biggest topics of conversation along the Wasatch Front today:   http://www.underdogdynasty.com/2015/12/13/9890320/should-niumatalolo-stay-at-navy-or-jump-to-byu     [Read more…]

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“On the Record” with the managing director of Public Affairs for the LDS Church

    A transcript and video of Michael R. Otterson’s candid presentation at the FairMormon conference in August 2015:   http://www.fairmormon.org/perspectives/fair-conferences/2015-fairmormon-conference/on-the-record     [Read more…]

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Music of Christmas 13

    I have a sad confession to make:  I’ve heard and sung the carol Silent Night so very many times over the course of my ridiculously many decades of mortal life that its impact on me has, I regret to say, been blunted a bit.   But BYU produced a very nice film about the genesis [Read More…]

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New Testament 336

    Matthew 27:11-14 Mark 15:2-5 Luke 23:2-5 John 18:29-38 Compare Matthew 26:53; Luke 23:9-10, 13-14; John 19:8-15   Why did Jesus make no defense?  Why did he say so little before Pilate?   Because he would go to his death without resistance.  He would no more defend himself verbally than he had defended himself [Read More…]

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“Christmas Shopping by the Four Wise Men”

    Are you feeling too solemn?   Studio C provides the most recent entry for the “Social” component of the Church’s 2015 campaign, “A Savior is Born”:   https://www.mormon.org/christmas/studio-c     [Read more…]

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