The Book of Mormon: What it is and What it is Not


Recently, I have begun to read The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ from the beginning again. As always, I continue to be impressed with the work, as well as continuing to gain new insights into the work itself. One thing is for sure: Joseph Smith, Jr. could not have produced such a work. It is my testimony that this book is a book preserved by God himself for our day.However, in this post I do not want to give my testimony as much as I want to point out two logical … [Read more...]

If Mormon Women are Too Busy to be Leaders, We Have a Problem


The recent news that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will officially include women on some of the Church's top governing councils is just one more snippet in a long conversation about ways women can and should do more in the Church. From Ordain Women's ongoing efforts to petition for ordination, to moderate feminist's pleas for women already in positions of authority to be heard (such as Neylan McBaine's book, Women at Church: Magnifying LDS Women's Local Impact), this interest in … [Read more...]

Blacks and the LDS Priesthood


When criticisms are generally made against the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, there are always two that never seem to go away. The first is the issue of polygamy; the other is black people and the priesthood. This is not much of a surprise, as people are often more interested in the controversial and the negative, rather than what the church and it’s doctrines really teach.In response to this, in 2013 the church released an article entitled “Race and the Priesthood”. No one is e … [Read more...]

About Me

Tarik photo

Before I start writing for Patheos, especially for Peculiar People, I thought that it would be appropriate to introduce my readers to myself; especially who I am and why I do what I do.I was born on June 16th 1991 in Washington D.C. My parents were in the military, so we moved quite a bit, but settled in Riverside, California in 1995. I spent most of my life in Riverside, and will always consider it home, regardless of where I currently happen to live at the time.I was raised as a … [Read more...]

“It seems as if the whole world has gone crazy”: Seeking peace in the midst of turmoil


For the first eighteen years of my life, I was Catholic. As I like to say, “the real kind, not the Christmas-and-Easter kind.” My family still is. Anyway, for fourteen of those eighteen years, I attended Catholic school. During the elementary and junior high-aged years, on Fridays during Lent, we as a school would go across the street to the church and practice a more child-oriented version of the Stations of the Cross. When we got to the station for the Crucifixion, there was a description of th … [Read more...]

Another Year, Another Mormon Feminist Silenced at Church

If someone had asked me three or five years ago whether I feared retribution for being an outspoken Mormon feminist, I would have told them no, not really. But I would have added that I didn't fear it because on an intellectual level I saw how the Church had become more inclusive. That we were past the days of the September Six excommunications, that efforts such as the I'm a Mormon campaign demonstrated the Church's commitment to including diverse members with varying viewpoints. But I also … [Read more...]

Is Mormonism optimistic?

I’ve been having a problem with optimism lately. My last two blog posts were basically just exercises in much needed mental cleansing. I feel alone at church and all my friends are leaving, etc. You know, young person stuff, I guess.But I’ve been fighting harder lately. Getting in the ring to punch out pessimism. ‘I believe this stuff” I keep reminding myself, “so I gotta figure out how to make this work and make it work well.”A big part of my efforts toward optimism is a sort of reconver … [Read more...]

Application Deadline Extended for Wheatley Seminar

Advanced undergraduate and graduate students are invited to apply to participate in a three week seminar from June 22-July 10 in Provo, Utah, surveying early Christian thought, Mormon theological foundations, contemporary social issues-- and how we might find connections among all three. A rare opportunity to integrate the sometimes esoteric realms of Mormon theology with the practical, lived reality of our political engagement in the real world. Generous stipend for those selected.Click … [Read more...]