Apologetics

400: Top 5 Myths and Truths about Why Committed Mormons Leave the Church

June 12, 2014
By
WhyMormonsLeave2013

I created this video/presentation for two reasons: To dispel any misunderstandings about why people leave the church (and what happens to them when they do) that came about as a result of my recent podcast interview, and I’ve been wanting to update my “Why people leave the LDS church” youtube video for some time to include the results from the “Why Mormons Question” survey. Please watch and provide feedback if you can…and then share w/ family, friends, and church members/leaders who lack understanding or empathy.  Powerpoint presentation can be found here.

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470-471: Adam Miller’s Letters to a Young Mormon

May 13, 2014
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Adam Miller has been described as one of the most interesting and important writers in Mormonism today.  In this episode we speak with Adam about his new book, “Letters to a Young Mormon,” published by the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship.  According to Adam, this book attempts to address the real beauty and costs of trying to live a Mormon life. Adam is a professor of philosophy at Collin College in McKinney Texas.  He was born and raised in a small Pennsylvania branch, and served an LDS mission in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  He has been married for 15 years…

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465-466: Brad Kramer on Faith Paradigms and Letting Go of Eden

April 16, 2014
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465-466: Brad Kramer on Faith Paradigms and Letting Go of Eden

Brad Kramer represents a rising generation of young, thoughtful, faithful Latter-day Saint scholars.  In this two part episode, Brad briefly discusses his own faith/intellectual journey within the LDS church, and then offers a parent/child, developmental framework for approaching a more mature LDS faith.  Brad also briefly discusses a new approach to LDS apologetics, often dubbed “pastoral apologetics.” Brad is married to Tracey von Bose-Kramer, and is the father of five children.  Brad holds a B.A. in Russian from Brigham Young University, a B.A. in History from the University of Utah, an M.A. in American History from the University of Utah, and is…

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443-444: Alternative Feminist Approaches to Ordain Women

October 16, 2013
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In this 2-part series, Fiona Givens, Maxine Hanks, Margaret Young, and Neylan McBaine discuss alternative Feminist approaches to the Ordain Women movement. * Maxine’s photo by Justin Hackworth Photography. P.S.  Here is a video attempting to explain what the Ordain Women think and feel, and what they are trying to accomplish.

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406-407: James McConkie: Family, Faith, Bruce R. McConkie, and the Historical Christ

March 15, 2013
By
jim-profile2

Jay Griffith and Sarah Collett (of A Thoughtful Faith Podcast) sit with James W. McConkie to speak with him about his personal history and family. As a nephew of Bruce R. McConkie and Joseph B. Wirthlin, Jim has a unique perspective of the Church and the brethren and a valuable approach to the Gospel.  Speaking about his faith, parenting, and his views on the historical Christ, Jim explains his approach to doubt and difficult questions.

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405: Brian Hales Pt. 4 – Reconciling Belief with Polygamy

March 14, 2013
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In part 4 of a series on Joseph Smith’s polygamy, Brian Hales explains the foundations of his LDS beliefs, and how he maintains belief in the face of detailed knowledge regarding Joseph Smith’s polygamy.

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404: Brian Hales Pt. 3 – The Naturalistic vs. Faithful View of Joseph Smth’s Polygamy

March 14, 2013
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In part 3 of a 4 part series on Joseph Smith’s polygamy, Brian Hales contrasts his views on the naturalistic vs. faithful view of Joseph Smith’s polygamy. Brian’s PowerPoint presentation can be downloaded here.

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403: Brian Hales Pt. 2 – 12 Myths Regarding Joseph Smith’s Polygamy

February 21, 2013
By
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In this episode Dr. Brian C. Hales discusses 12 myths regarding Joseph Smith’s practice of polygamy. Joseph Smith had a reputation as a womanizer. The Joseph Smith – Fanny Alger relationship was not a plural marriage. Joseph Smith’s polygamy was all about sex, in other words, “multiply and replenish the earth.” Joseph Smith had no children by his plural wives. Joseph Smith had sexual relations with 14 year olds. John C. Bennett was a polygamy insider in Nauvoo. None of Joseph Smith’s plural marriages were non-sexual “eternity-only” sealings. Joseph Smith’s teachings allow sexual polyandry. Some of Joseph Smith’s marriages included…

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402: Brian Hales Pt. 1 – A Refutation of Grant Palmer’s Treatment of Sexual Allegations Against Joseph Smith

February 21, 2013
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In this episode Dr. Brian C. Hales refutes Grant Palmer’s podcast and article on sexual allegations against Joseph Smith. Click here to obtain the PowerPoint presentation for this podcast. Click here to listen to Grant Palmer’s podcast outlining his interpretation of sexual allegations against Joseph Smith. Click here to read Grant Palmer’s discussion of these allegations. Click here to purchase Brian’s new books entitled “Joseph Smith’s Polygamy Vols. 1-3″ Click here to check out Brian’s website called “MormonFundamentalism.com” Click here to check out Brian’s website called “JosephSmithsPolygamy.com” Also, Brian C.Hales will be speaking about his research and signing copies at Benchmark Books (3269 S Main…

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392-395: Ralph Hancock – Critic of Mormon Liberalism

January 5, 2013
By
rch

Dr. Ralph C. Hancock is a professor of political science at Brigham Young University.  He holds a B.A. and an M.A. from BYU and a Ph.D. from Harvard University, and teaches classes on American and French political history as well as the history of political thought.  He is currently serving as president of the John Adams Center for the Study of Faith, Philosophy and Public Affairs at BYU, and within Mormonism is perhaps best known as a critic of Mormon liberalism and feminism.  You can read Dr. Hancock’s writings here, and responses to some of his writings here, here, here and…

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385-386: Fiona and Terryl Givens and “The God Who Weeps”

November 21, 2012
By
Terryl_and_Fiona_Givens

In this two-part interview we speak with Fiona and Terryl Givens on the release of their new book “The God Who Weeps: How Mormonism Makes Sense of Life.” In part 1, we interview Fiona about her life. In part 2, we speak with both Terryl and Fiona Givens about their new book.

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379: 2012 New York City Conference Featuring Richard Bushman, Andrew Kimball and the Sabre Rattlers

October 21, 2012
By
SabreRattlersNYC

Richard Bushman and Andrew Kimball speak, and the Sabre Rattlers perform at the 2012 New York Mormon Stories conference.

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370-371: Philip Barlow and A Thoughtful Faith

September 9, 2012
By
barlow1small

Philip Barlow is editor of the book “A Thoughtful Faith,” which was pivotal in my faith transition as a BYU student and beyond.  He currently sits in the Arrington Chair of Mormon History and Culture, at Utah State University. He earned a B. A. from Weber State College and an M.T.S. and Ph.D. (1988, with an emphasis on Religion and American Culture and on the History of Christianity) from Harvard University. He spent two years as a Mellon Fellow at the University of Rochester after which he became professor of Theological Studies at Hanover College in Indiana. In addition to…

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363-364: Bishop Bill Reel on Being a Mormon Bishop, a Critique of Mormon Stories, and Resolving Faith Struggles

July 19, 2012
By
BillReel

Bill Reel is currently serving as Bishop of the Sandusky ward of the Cleveland Ohio Stake. In this interview we begin by discussing Bishop Reel’s conversion to the church AFTER reading Fawn Brodie’s “No Man Knows my History”, and his avid pursuit of Mormon apologetics after his baptism. We also discuss in depth his calling as bishop – including his job to counsel youth and women on sexual matters, masturbation, and homosexuality. Since Bishop Reel is a listener of the podcast, we discuss his perception and frustration of an increasing trend towards negativity on Mormon Stories. We also discuss the…

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343-344: Mormonism and the Internet with John Dehlin, Scott Gordon (FAIR) and Rosemary Avance

May 2, 2012
By
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As part of the March 2012 “Mormonism and the Internet” conference held at Utah Valley University, John Dehlin, Scott Gordon (of the Foundation for Apologetic Information and Research or FAIR) and Rosemary Avance discuss LDS disaffection and apologetics. John’s “Why Mormons Question” presentation with visuals: Part 1 – John Dehlin, Scott Gordon, Rosemary Avance: Part 2 – Panel Discussion:

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321-322: Denver Snuffer – A Progressive, Fundamentalist, Non-Polygamist Mormon Lawyer Who Claims to Have Seen Christ

February 12, 2012
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In this episode John Dehlin interviews Denver Snuffer: a progressive, fundamentalist, non-polygamist Mormon lawyer who claims to have seen Christ. Denver is the author of several books including The Second Comforter: Conversing With the Lord Through the Veil and Passing the Heavenly Gift.

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317-318: BYU Professor Charles Harrell and the Evolution of Mormon Doctrine

January 25, 2012
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317-318: BYU Professor Charles Harrell and the Evolution of Mormon Doctrine

In this episode, BYU Professor Charles Harrell discusses his new book entitled: “This Is My Doctrine: The Development of Mormon Theology.”  Please remember that you can purchase this book at a discount using the code: MSTORIES.  Proceeds will go to Mormon Stories. “In this first-of-its-kind comprehensive treatment of the development of Mormon theology, Charles Harrell traces the history of Latter-day Saint doctrines from the times of the Old Testament to the present. He describes how Mormonism has carried on the tradition of the biblical authors, early Christians, and later Protestants in reinterpreting scripture to accommodate new theological ideas while attempting…

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307-311: Translating the Book of Mormon with Brant Gardner

December 28, 2011
By
Gardner__GiftandPower

In our 5-part conversation with Brant Gardner about his new book entitled “The Gift and Power: Translating the Book of Mormon,” we discuss most of the major issues with the Book of Mormon including: Joseph Smith’s use of folk magic, the Book of Mormon translation process (including the peep stone in the hat), Book of Mormon anachronisms, DNA and race.  This interview attempts to address many of the issues discussed in our interviews with Grant Palmer and Dr. Michael Coe. For a limited time Greg Kofford Books is offering The Gift and Power: Translating the Book of Mormon at a 20%…

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289-293: Terryl Givens — An Approach to Thoughtful, Honest and Faithful Mormonism

September 28, 2011
By
givensp

Terryl Givens did graduate work at Cornell University in Intellectual History and UNC Chapel Hill where he received his PhD in Comparative Literature. He holds the James A. Bostwick chair of English, and is Professor of Literature and Religion at the University of Richmond, where he teaches courses in 19th century studies, and the Bible’s influence on western literature. As a commentator on Mormon religion and culture, he has appeared on PBS, NPR, and CNN. Author of ten books, his writing has been praised by the New York Times as “provocative reading,” and includes, most recently, When Souls had Wings,…

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271-274: LDS Apologist – Dr. Daniel C. Peterson

August 19, 2011
By
DanielPeterson

Daniel C. Peterson is a professor of Islamic Studies and Arabic in the Department of Asian and Near Eastern Languages at Brigham Young University and currently serves as editor-in-chief of BYU’s Middle Eastern Texts Initiative. He is a member of the executive council of the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship at Brigham Young University. Peterson is known for his work as an apologist and scholar on subjects dealing with claims of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon), of which he is a member. He has served as the editor of the FARMS Review, a periodical…

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250-251: Grant & Heather Hardy – Book of Mormon Scholarship

April 5, 2011
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250-251: Grant & Heather Hardy – Book of Mormon Scholarship

In this 2-part discussion, KC Kern (BookofMormonOnline.Net) speaks with Dr. Grant Hardy and his wife Heather Hardy.  Grant Hardy is Professor of History and Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Asheville. He has a B.A. in Ancient Greek from Brigham Young University and  Ph.D. in Chinese Language and Literature from Yale. He has authored Worlds of Bronze and Bamboo: Sima Qian’s Conquest of History; The Establishment of the Han Empire and Imperial China; and Understanding the Book of Mormon: A Reader’s Guide, as well as the Introduction for Royal Skousen’s recent Yale edition of the Book of Mormon. He has also…

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235-238: Dan Wotherspoon – Mormonism Broad and Deep

February 16, 2011
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235-238: Dan Wotherspoon – Mormonism Broad and Deep

In this 4-part series we interview Dan Wotherspoon. Dan has a Ph.D. in religion from the Claremont Graduate School, and was Director of the Sunstone Education Foundation and Editor of Sunstone magazine for eight years, and he now serves on its board of directors.  In this interview, Dan discusses his early experiences with the LDS church, his early stumbles before his mission, the various crises of faith he experienced during his graduate studies and beyond, and the various perspectives he has gained that have allowed him to put his faith back together again in such a way that he is…

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160-162: Dr. David Bailey on Science and the LDS Church, and How Science Has Strengthened his Faith in God and the Church

June 17, 2010
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160-162: Dr. David Bailey on Science and the LDS Church, and How Science Has Strengthened his Faith in God and the Church

Some say that science and religion are at odds.  Dr. David Bailey would disagree.  Dr. Bailey is a graduate of Stanford University with a Ph.D. in mathematics.  He currently works as the Chief Technologist for the Computational Research Department at the prestigious Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.  He has published three books on computational and experimental mathematics, and has published 136 scientific, peer reviewed journal articles to date.  He is a strong believer in the theory of Organic Evolution…. ….and he is also an active, believing member of the LDS Church.  Dr. Bailey is also the founder of the “Science Meets Religion”…

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137-138: Edward Kimball, Son of Spencer W. Kimball Parts 1 & 2

March 31, 2010
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137-138: Edward Kimball, Son of Spencer W. Kimball Parts 1 & 2

In this 2-part interview (audio and video), I speak with Edward L. Kimball: son of the late LDS Prophet Spencer W. Kimball.  Edward Kimball is a retired law professor from Brigham Young University, and author of two biographies on Spencer W. Kimball: Spencer W. Kimball and Lengthen Your Stride, the Presidency of Spencer W. Kimball.  Edward has also been an active supporter over the years of both Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought and Sunstone magazine. In this interview, we discuss: What it’s like to grow up the son of an LDS Prophet An intimate look at Edward’s impressions of…

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132-134: Karen Armstrong’s “The Case for God” and Mormonism Parts 1-3

March 6, 2010
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132-134: Karen Armstrong’s “The Case for God” and Mormonism Parts 1-3

I would like to kick off the inaugural “Mormon Stories Book Club” with our first book: Karen Armstrong’s “The Case for God”. In Part 1, I re-publish Terry Gross’ 2009 Fresh Air interview with Karen Armstrong.  Please listen to this episode, buy and read the book this week, and next week we will: In Part 2, John Hamer, J. Nelson Seawright, Joanna Brooks and I lay out Karen Armstrong’s major premises, and analyze them In Part 3, we discuss how Karen Armstrong’s book might or might not apply to Mormonism. John Dehlin

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054: Nate Oman — On Messiness, Harvard, the Bloggernacle, and Thoughtful Faith

February 22, 2007
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Chances are, you’ve never heard of Nate Oman. Nevertheless — Nate is a Mormon worth knowing. Born to Sunstone and Dialogue – style parents, Nate was raised to expect “messiness” within both the world, and his Church. After serving an LDS mission in Korea and graduating from BYU, Nate attended Harvard Law School. During law school, Nate became one of the very first Mormon bloggers on the Internet, and is one of the founders of the juggernaut blog “timesandseasons.org” — you might even call Nate Oman the godfather of the Mormon bloggernacle (or the network of Mormon-themed blogs on the…

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051: Richard Bushman Part 5 — Final Thoughts (For now)

February 7, 2007
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In the 5th and final part of this multi-part interview with Dr. Richard Bushman, the world’s foremost scholar on Joseph Smith and early Mormonism and author of Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling, John Dehlin offers some final thoughts on his time with Brother Bushman, and Dr. Bushman himself provides some final musings on the challenges of dealing with tough Mormon issues. He then concludes with his testimony of Joseph Smith. To access this interview, subscribe via iTunes, or click here to listen to the audio directly. To provide direct feedback to me or to Dr. Bushman about this episode, please…

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050: Richard Bushman Part 4 — Book of Mormon Historicity and the 3 and 8 Witnesses

February 4, 2007
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In part 4 of this multi-part interview with Dr. Richard Bushman, the world’s foremost scholar on Joseph Smith and early Mormonism and author of Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling, Brother Bushman discusses the historicity of the Book of Mormon, and the credibility of the 3 and 8 witnesses to the Book of Mormon. To access this interview, subscribe via iTunes, or click here to listen to the audio directly.

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049: Richard Bushman Part 3 — Joseph Smith and the Translation of the Book of Mormon

February 1, 2007
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In part 3 of this multi-part interview with Dr. Richard Bushman, the world’s foremost scholar on Joseph Smith and early Mormonism and author of Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling, Brother Bushman discusses Joseph Smith’s bringing to light of the Book of Mormon, from angel Moroni’s visit, to the obtaining of the plates, to the actual mechanics of the translation process. He also discusses the process of receiving revelation within Mormonism, as a Patriarch in the LDS Church. To access this interview, subscribe via iTunes, or click here to listen to the audio directly.

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048: Richard Bushman Part 2 — The Art of History, Joseph Smith’s First Vision Stories, and Joseph’s Participation in Folk Magic and Treasure Digging

January 25, 2007
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In part 2 of this multi-part interview with Dr. Richard Bushman, the world’s foremost scholar on Joseph Smith and early Mormonism and author of Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling, we tackle 4 main topics. First, brother Bushman provides a high level review of the major Joseph Smith biographies that preceded Rough Stone Rolling, including Fawn Brodie’s “No man knows my history.” Next, brother Bushman discusses the art of writing history, and the challenges involved in trying to arrive at “the facts” and “the truth” for both historians, and readers of history. Finally, we discuss in depth the first 2 of…

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