Sacrament Meeting Suggestions

Sacrament Meeting can be one of the most spiritually fulfilling meetings in church. The talks can be fresh, exciting, and deeply moving. They can set the tone for your spiritual outlook for the rest of the week at least. Sometimes a talk is so good that you actually remember it for years later.It can also be one of the most painful meetings at church. Talks can be rote, predictable, and profoundly boring. My least favorite are the talks that simply quote general authorities. One of my very … [Read more...]

Defending BYU and LDS Biblical Scholarship

Much has been said in these here parts, both in times distantly past and in recent posts, about the level, quality, and state of LDS Biblical scholarship. In my mind, it is an important discussion that is vital to the advancing of our scholarship and respect in the academic community. To some degree, BYU lies at the heart of this discussion because until recently most LDS Biblical scholars were to be found at BYU. And the ones who got heard and were influential certainly were here. This seems to … [Read more...]

Trends in Gospel of Judas Studies

I know that it seems weird to identify "trends" on a document that has been out less than a year, so this post may seem a bit premature. At the same time, the fact is that two major schools have already developed regarding the Gospel of Judas. The first, following the initial release of the text, argued that Judas was the chosen disciple over all the others. The obvious shock-value of this revelation has propelled the popularity and interest in the text. The second, newer interpretation … [Read more...]

On Watchin’ the Game

The health risks of American football have been getting a lot of attention in the press lately, no doubt in anticipation of the Super Bowl. Both the New York Times and the Boston Globe ran articles on the frequency of head injuries in professional football. The articles highlighted former Patriots linebacker, Ted Johnson, who received several concussions during his career. Johnson’s head injuries resulted in severe depression and drug addiction.Like many other professional and amateur f … [Read more...]

Sacramental Musings

Since I've started taking New Testament Greek classes I've started paying more attention to small details in the text, about the only benefit of reading about 10 words a minute. The thing that's been on my mind concerns the sacrament and it's covenantal function. David J.'s wonderfully controversial post on baptism brought forward my opinion about the sacrament being the true covenant that people attribute to baptism. I'm not going to go there with this post, but it also helped me to articulate … [Read more...]

When to put a Child up for Adoption

I recently learned that a person I know put her baby up for adoption. As I don't know all the details of this story, I won't go into to specifics; but I am familiar with a couple of other people who, aftering getting pregnant while rather young (usually in their teens) gave up their children at the encouragment of the church.I'm wondering about the reasoning behind this encouragement (both culturally and institutionally).One couple I met, got pregnant while in highschool and gave their baby up … [Read more...]

Passivity and Practice

handle's recent and excellent post on architecture raises some connected issues that I've been struggling with lately: To what extent should the church reflect local culture, flavor, etc. and to what extent should it be Mormon? I know this is quite broad, and diahman and others have posted on related questions. The one I want to ask is more specific to architectural and temple traditions.Are we more invested when we pay for and design our own meetinghouses? And do we understand the temple … [Read more...]

Mormons and Biblical Scholarship II

Over at FPR, there is an excellent discussion of Mormon biblical exegesis. I am very interested in this topic, but what I wanted to say was more than a comment's worth, so I just decided to post on it. The discussion centers on a recent Church News article by Prof. Kent Jackson at BYU who lays a brief foundation for the principles of Mormon Biblical Studies. I am certainly interested in the examination of the possibility and dimensions of this idea, but I am more interested in what are taken … [Read more...]


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