June 26, 2022

    ***   We’re just back from what I think were exceptionally good Sunday meetings.  I noticed no reason to believe that it was by conscious design, but both the opening and closing prayers in our sacrament meeting today, and all three of the talks, were given by women.  (When some who don’t know much about Latter-day Saints fault us for having an all-male priesthood, I suspect that they assume such a gender distinction to entail the silence of... Read more

June 26, 2022

      ***   We’re just back from a performance of The Audience, written by Peter Morgan, at the Liahona Preparatory Academy in Pleasant Grove.  The production was put on, quite well, as part of the 2022 season of the Creekside Theatre Fest, with Jayne Luke portraying Queen Elizabeth II.  I had, I confess, never heard of either the Academy or the Group.  But we have seen The Audience before.  In California, I believe.  For a history enthusiast such... Read more

June 24, 2022

    ***   A new article has just appeared in Interpreter: A Journal of Latter-day Saint Faith and Scholarship:   “Jonathan Edwards’s Unique Role in an Imagined Church History,” by Spencer Kraus Review of Jonathan Neville, Infinite Goodness: Joseph Smith, Jonathan Edwards, and the Book of Mormon. Salt Lake City: Digital Legends Press, 2021. 339 pages. $22.99 (paperback). Abstract: This is the second of two papers reviewing Jonathan Neville’s latest books on the translation of the Book of Mormon. In Infinite Goodness, Neville claims that Joseph Smith’s... Read more

June 23, 2022

    ***   On the flight from Munich, I began reading Rolf Dobelli, Die Kunst des digitalen Lebens: Wie Sie auf News verzichten und die Informationsflut meistern (“The Art of Living Digitally: How to Abstain from ‘News’ and Master Information Overload.”   He is an author — Swiss, by the way, residing in Bern — that I’ve come to enjoy, so I was happy to find this 2020 volume in a bookstore in the Berlin Airport.  This is rather... Read more

June 22, 2022

    ***   Although I had his kind permission to share this here already a while ago, I’m not sure whether I’ve done already done so or not.  (I have just a few minutes to spare, and no time to check.)  So here is Jim Bennett’s response to the first episode of the FX/Hulu miniseries Under the Banner of Heaven — which, I understand, has now concluded its run.  I have two more of his entries to share, and... Read more

June 22, 2022

    ***   During much of my life, especially during my earlier years, the so-called “great man” approach to history has been out of fashion.  And there are good reasons for that.  Overwhelmingly, for example, the deep, epochal, transformative changes of history — e.g., the domestication of the horse, the invention of movable type, the development of the stirrup, advancements in the technology of sails and shipbuilding, plagues, and the like — haven’t cared who was sitting on the... Read more

June 21, 2022

    ***   Here are some items that have been newly posted on the website of the Interpreter Foundation:   “Nibley Lectures: Time Vindicates the Prophets — A World without Prophets” From March 7 to October 17 in 1954, Hugh Nibley delivered a series of 30 weekly lectures on KSL Radio that were also published as pamphlets. The series called “Time Vindicates the Prophets” was given in answer to those who were challenging the right of members of the... Read more

June 20, 2022

        ***   Before leaving for the Wartburg yesterday, we did a guided walking tour within the walls of Rothenburg ob der Tauber.  It’s a quaint and picturesque little city, the very image of a late medieval German town.  (Or even of a French one.  I can easily imagine the story of Beauty and the Beast being filmed in Rothenburg o.d.T.)  We had visited it only once before, so this brief repeated stay and the excellent local... Read more

June 19, 2022

    ***   I’ve been late in calling attention to this article, which I published nearly a week ago in Meridian Magazine — whose leadership I ran into in Oberammergau just a couple of days back.  Shocking.  You can be sure  that things have gotten seriously out of hand when I’m so busy that I neglect my own self-promotion!   “What the Pilgrims to Santiago de Compostela Taught Us About Devotion”   And here are a trio of items... Read more

June 18, 2022

      ***   We left Oberammergau this morning and drove to the nearby Schloss Linderhof, the only one of his palaces that Ludwig II lived to see actually completed.  It’s a small gem, surrounded by beautiful fountains and grounds and remarkably ornate inside.  Unfortunately, the “Venus Grotto,” inspired by Richard Wagner’s Tannhäuser, is closed for repairs until sometime in 2024.   I was especially interested to visit, once again, the Maurischer Kiosk or “Moorish Kiosk,” a small structure... Read more




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