Hubris and the Straw Man

I checked into Facebook earlier today and in my timeline was a link to an article in the December Ensign. (The Ensign is a monthly magazine published by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.) The article, entitled “The Answer to All the Hard Questions,” was shared by John Dehlin, a vocal and prominent critic of the Church.

Temple Garments, Explained

Those who know me understand that I have an odd hobby that I engage in from time to time—apologetics. (Or, more descriptively, defense of the faith.) One facet of that is that I often attend the LDS church’s General Conference, every April and October, to see what those who are most overtly vocal against our faith are up to.

Science Proves Me Right!

We’ve all heard countering claims before, about just about any topic you can think of. Eventually someone trots out “scientific evidence” that bolsters their claim—whatever that claim may be—in order to win rhetorical points and, by chance, converts to their cause.

Excommunication

It was late. I pulled up in front of my home, exhausted from the events of the evening. I was drained, both physically and emotionally. I summoned what little strength I had left, picked up my scriptures, climbed out of the car, and walked toward the front door. As I walked into the house, I glanced to my right and saw my wife. Despite the hour, she met my glance… Read More »

BYU Liberality and the Pain of Being Gay and Mormon

I’ve never been a BYU student. At one time I went to the school now known as BYU Idaho, but that doesn’t mean I was a BYU student. On many fronts, at the time, we viewed BYU as our competitor, not as another manifestation of our alma mater. Even so, I was interested this week by two widely divergent articles about BYU. Or, I should say, about the climate or… Read More »

Understanding the Mix

Most everyone knows that I publish free online newsletters for a living. That may sound like a bit of a contradiction—earning a living from publishing something free. In light of an e-mail that I received from someone the other day, I figured I better lay out a bit of information about how it is possible for me to earn a living from something that is free.

Movie Day: Moms’ Night Out

I didn’t have high expectations when I went to see Moms’ Night Out today with my wife. I’m not sure that the movie-going public has high expectations, either, as we went to a late matinee and comprised, between us, about 33% of the people in the theater.

Welcoming Criminals and Terrorists

I just received an e-mail that passed on what the person called “a profound message,” under the subject of “IDAHO – my kind of state!” The passed-on message said “This sign actually exists just inside Idaho near the border with Washington.”

The Lure (and Peril) of Our Temporal Rameumptoms

For those of my non-Mormon friends, please bear with me. I am starting this essay with a story from the Book of Mormon, but this story isn’t about Mormonism; it is about humanity. I have no doubt that even if you don’t believe in the Book of Mormon, there is value to be found here. In Alma 31 there is an interesting story. Alma and his companions are going to… Read More »

Poignant Bumper Sticker Memes

I enjoyed general conference earlier this month, and in fact wrote a good deal about it and the goings-on by other groups at conference time. One of those groups is Ordain Women, which sponsored an event designed to heighten awareness of those who would like to see women be ordained to the priesthood.