Ex-Mormon Stories

499b: Brent Metcalfe — Mormon Apologetics and Approaching Life After Mormonism

September 25, 2014
By
metcalfe

And now, the final installment of our epic* interview with Brent Metcalfe! In today’s episode, we’ll talk to Brent about his interactions and run-ins with prominent Mormon apologists like Daniel Peterson, Lou Midgley and others. We’ll also talk about the recent history of BYU’s Maxwell Institute and what he sees in its future and in the future of Mormon apologetics overall. We’ll also talk in depth with Brent about how he has been able to construct a healthy and happy life outside of Mormonism. And be sure not to miss the exciting announcement from Brent toward the end of the…

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497-498: Brent Metcalfe — After the Hofmann bombings, Brent’s excommunication, and examining the Book of Mormon

September 13, 2014
By
497-498: Brent Metcalfe — After the Hofmann bombings, Brent’s excommunication, and examining the Book of Mormon

In the highly anticipated follow up to our first interview, Brent Metcalfe continues his story. In Part 3, Brent discusses the aftermath of the Hofmann murders, including the trial and Hofmann’s eventual plea deal. He also discusses the events leading up to, and including, his excommunication. In Part 4, Brent examines some of the issues surrounding traditional approaches to the Book of Mormon. A special thanks to Brent, who was feeling significantly under the weather during our interview, for sticking it out to deliver what amounts to one of the more fascinating Mormon Stories interviews.

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483-486: Christine Jeppsen Clark, Daughter of General Authority Malcolm Jeppsen

July 7, 2014
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Christine Jeppsen Clark is a mother of six, a former Mormon Tabernacle Choir member, a Ph.D. graduate student focusing on dementia, and a dear personal friend.  She is also the daughter of the late Elder Malcolm S. Jeppsen — former LDS General Authority, personal physician and best friend to Elder Boyd K. Packer, and a GA who was directly involved in the excommunication of Avraham Gileadi (one of the September Six).  In this multi-part episode with Christine we discuss: What it was like to grow up in the 1950s and 1960s in Salt Lake City as a very orthodox, devout member…

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480-482: Jeremy Runnells and his Letter to a CES Director

June 18, 2014
By
jeremy

In February 2012, Jeremy Runnels experienced a crisis of faith, which subsequently led to a faith transition in the summer of 2012. In the spring of 2013, Jeremy was approached and asked by a Church Education System (CES) Director to share his concerns and questions about the LDS Church’s origins, history, and current practices. In response, Jeremy wrote what later became publicly known as Letter to a CES Director. Letter to a CES Director very quickly went viral on the internet. The CES Director responded that he read the “very well written” letter and that he would provide Jeremy with…

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475: Sandra Tanner Pt 4: “Anti-Mormonism,” Her Christian Beliefs, the Future of the LDS Church, Jerald’s Passing, and Final Testimony

June 2, 2014
By
a-foto

In part 4 of a 4 part series, Sandra Tanner discusses her views on being called an “anti-Mormon,” her Christian beliefs, her views on the recent candor/openness and future of the LDS church, the passing of her husband (Jerald — Alzheimer’s), and shares her final testimony.

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474: Sandra Tanner Pt. 3 — Treasure Digging, Polygamy, Thomas Ferguson, Eugene England

May 26, 2014
By
SandraTanner

In part 3 of a 4 part series, Sandra discusses several issues including Joseph Smith’s treasure digging, connections between the Masonic Lodge temple ceremony and the LDS Church temple ceremony, polygamy, the Mountain Meadows Massacre, blacks and the LDS priesthood, the Thomas Ferguson story, the Eugene England/Bruce R. McConkie letter exchange, the LDS church’s law suit against UTLM, and the Godmakers film.

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473: Sandra Tanner Pt. 2 — LDS Apostles, First Vision, Books of Mormon and Abraham, and Mark Hofmann

May 22, 2014
By
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In part 2 of our interview with Sandra Tanner, Sandra discusses challenges that she and her late husband had with Joseph Smith’s First Vision, the Book of Mormon, the Book of Abraham, along with her interactions with Joseph Fielding Smith, Legrand Richard, and famous Mormon forger and murderer Mark Hofmann.

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472: Sandra (and Jerald) Tanner Pt. 1 — The Early Years

May 19, 2014
By
100tannerfamily

Sandra and the late Jerald Tanner were raised in the LDS faith, both with a strong Mormon family history. Jerald was the great-great-grandson of John Tanner, well known for his sizable financial contributions to Joseph Smith and the LDS church in 1835 when the church was deeply in debt. Sandra Tanner is a great-great-granddaughter of Brigham Young, the second president of the Mormon Church. As teenagers, before they met, Jerald and Sandra were challenged by different people and events to examine the origins of Mormonism. Soon after their introduction, they jointly began researching Mormonism and became engaged. Both accepted Christ…

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467-468: Taryn and Jason Nelson-Seawright on Leaving the Church after Returning

April 23, 2014
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467-468: Taryn and Jason Nelson-Seawright on Leaving the Church after Returning

In November, 2005 Mormon Stories interviewed Jason Nelson-Seawright (known online as “Roasted Tomatoes”) and Taryn Nelson-Seawright (“Serenity Valley”).  In this touching, 2-part series Taryn discussed how she resigned from the church as a teenager, but ultimately felt called by God to become re-baptized into the LDS church — ultimately becoming sealed to Jason in the temple.  You can listen to this original episode here and here. In this episode, nine years later, Jason and Taryn discuss their decision to leave the church completely.  They also discuss how their experiences with Autism Spectrum Disorder affected this decision.

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459: Confessions of a Latter-day Virgin by Nicole Hardy

March 13, 2014
By
NicoleHardy

In this podcast, Heather Olson Beal interviews Nicole Hardy, author of the stunningly beautiful memoir, Confessions of a Latter-day Virgin, with readers and fans Claire, Mel, and Maren. From amazon.com: When Nicole Hardy’s eye-opening “Modern Love” column appeared in the New York Times, the response from readers was overwhelming. Hardy’s essay, which exposed the conflict between being true to herself as a woman and remaining true to her Mormon faith, struck a chord with women coast-to-coast. Now in her funny, intimate, and thoughtful memoir, Nicole Hardy explores how she came, at the age of thirty-five, to a crossroads regarding her…

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454: Josh Hanagarne on Tourette Syndrome, Faith, Family, and being the World’s Strongest Librarian

December 30, 2013
By
JoshHanagarne

Josh Hanagarne is a father, husband, avid reader, librarian, weight lifter extraordinaire, and the author of the amazing book The World’s Strongest Librarian: A Memoir of Tourette’s, Faith, Strength, and the Power of Family. In this podcast, Heather Olson Beal and John Dehlin interview Josh about his childhood and adolescence, his Tourette’s diagnosis and treatment, his LDS mission experience, his marriage and family, his educational and work experiences, his body building experiences, and his faith/spirituality.  Josh is open, honest, and frank about all of the above. The book is delightful and thought-provoking and full of humanity and beauty.  We can’t…

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438: Elders – A Mormon Missionary Novel by Ryan McIlvain

September 19, 2013
By
Elders

Ryan McIlvain was born in Utah and raised in Massachusetts. His fiction and nonfiction have appeared in many journals, including The Paris Review.  A graduate of the Rutgers MFA Program and a recipient of the Stegner Fellowship at Stanford, he currently lives with his wife in Los Angeles. As part of Mormon Stories Book Club, today Heather Olson Beal and I discuss Ryan’s book “Elders,” which is the story of two young Mormon missionaries in Brazil and their tense, peculiar friendship.  Elder McLeod—outspoken, surly, a brash American—is nearing the end of his mission. For nearly two years he has spent his days studying…

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422-423: John Hamer on Returning to Mormonism Through the Community of Christ

June 14, 2013
By
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In today’s episode we interview John Hamer, who left Mormonism and religion/belief altogether with no intent to return (after graduating from BYU). We explore how John’s relationship with his partner, Mike, helped him to discover his love for Mormon history, the Mormon historians community, and the John Whitmer Historical Association. This path ultimately led John to become baptized in the Community of Christ (formerly the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints) on April 6, 2010 — the 150th anniversary of the Reorganization and the 180th anniversary of the organization of the church. How does an ex-Mormon who…

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419-421: Tom Kimball and Dan Wotherspoon, 7 Years After “Stages of Faith”

May 27, 2013
By
TomDan

In January 2006 Mormon Stories interviewed Tom Kimball and Dan Wotherspoon to discuss James Fowler’s “Stages of Faith” and Mormonism (you can listen to the original interview here).  At the time, both Tom and Dan were active in the LDS church, and committed to remaining members.  7 years later, Tom Kimball and his family have left the church, and Dan remains.  This is their Mormon story of faith and doubt…7 years hence.

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417: Dr. Ryan Cragun on his new book “What You Don’t Know About Religion (but should)”

April 30, 2013
By
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Today we interview Dr. Ryan Cragun about his new book, “What You Don’t Know about Religion (but Should).”  Ryan is a  professor at the University of Tampa, and specializes in the sociological study of religion, focusing on Mormonism, the nonreligious, and secularization.  Topics covered in this podcast include: Why are people religious? Are religious people more educated than nonreligious people? Are religious people more moral, more humble, or happier? Are religious people more or less prejudiced than nonreligious people? Is religion good for your health and happiness? Are people becoming more or less religious? What are the alternatives to religion?…

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408-411: Brett Bradshaw – Gay Marriage and Fatherhood

March 26, 2013
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408-411: Brett Bradshaw – Gay Marriage and Fatherhood

On this historic day when the United States Supreme Court is considering the legality of gay marriage, we share with you our interview with Brett Bradshaw.  Brett is the son of longtime Mormon LGBT advocates Marge and William Bradshaw.  In this four-part interview Brett discusses: Part 1: His early LDS years, his mission service, falling in love with his husband (Jeff), and his decision to leave the LDS church. Part 2: His process of coming out as a gay man, and his thoughts on exploring sexuality in healthy ways Part 3: His decision to marry Jeff, have a child (Madeline)…

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380: 2012 New York City Conference Pt. 2 with Elna Baker

October 28, 2012
By
Elna Baker

Elna Baker speaks at the 2012 Mormon Stories conference in New York City.

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374-375: Eldon Kartchner Pts. 3 & 4: Losing Heather to Cancer, Grief, and its Impact on Faith

September 18, 2012
By
Eldon2

In parts 3 and 4 of a 4-part series, Eldon Kartchner discusses: 1) losing his wife, Heather, to cancer, 2) his grieving process, and 3) the impact her death has had on his religious faith.  In part 4, Eldon is joined by several family members to discuss their reactions to Heather’s death as well. Part 3 Part 4

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372-373: Eldon Kartchner Pts. 1 & 2 – Living a Successful Mixed-Orientation Marriage, and Not Recommending It

September 16, 2012
By
Eldon3

In parts 1 and 2 of a 4-part series, Eldon Kartchner discusses: losing his battle against same-sex attraction as a Mormon, and his experience living a successful mixed-orientation marriage as a gay Mormon. He also discusses his feelings about the Josh and Lolly Weed story. Part 1 Part 2

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350-352: Dance Champion Benji Schwimmer

May 30, 2012
By
Benji-tiff

Benji Schwimmer is a world renowned dancer and choreographer. He is best known for winning Season 2 of the hit tv show So You Think You Can Dance. In this 3-part interview, Benji discusses the following: Part 1: His early years, and his LDS mission experience, Part 2: His experiences on So You Think You Can Dance, and Part 3: His attempts to come to terms with his sexuality and his LDS faith.

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348-349: Simon Southerton, DNA, Lamanites and the Book of Mormon

May 21, 2012
By
SGS

Simon Southerton is a native Australian, geneticist, former LDS bishop, and author of the book “Losing a Lost Tribe: Native Americans, DNA and the Mormon Church.”   Simon was a member of the LDS church for almost 30 years, serving a mission in Melbourne (1981-83), marrying in the New Zealand Temple in 1983, and serving in numerous church positions including four terms as Young Men President,  a counselor in several bishoprics and branch presidencies, and finally as bishop. While serving as bishop Simon began studying Native American DNA which he expected to have Middle Eastern origins, given the primary Book…

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331: The Bill Prince Family Story – From Stake Presidency and Houston Mormon Royalty to Ex-Mormons

March 23, 2012
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This episode was recorded as part of the January 2012 Mormon Stories regional conference held in Houston, Texas dedicated to the topic of "Maintaining Positive Relationships Through Empathy and Dialogue." Interview participants include Bill Prince, Julie Prince, Tina Prince and Lee Prince. Bill Prince served as a member of the Houston Texas Stake Presidency for several years before his daughter, Tina, left the LDS church; Bill and Julie soon followed. This is their Mormon story.

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Grant Palmer on Sexual Allegations Against Joseph Smith, William and Jane Law, and His Resignation

February 26, 2012
By
gpalmer

In this episode Grant Palmer, author of “An Insider’s View of Mormon Origins,” returns to Mormon Stories to discuss: Sexual allegations made against Joseph Smith during his early years The story of William and Jane Law, and An update on Grant’s resignation from the LDS church Warning: The material on this podcast is very sensitive and will likely be considered offensive by traditional LDS church believers.  Please do not listen if your faith is tender, or if you are seeking to avoid any critical discussion of Joseph Smith or the LDS church. Finally, to listen to our original interview with…

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313-316: John and Brooke McLay – From CES to Ex-Mormons

January 8, 2012
By
McLays

In this episode we interview John and Brooke McLay. John served for 14 years as an employee of the LDS Church Education System (CES). In this capacity he served as: a seminary teacher and principal, an institute teacher and director, a BYU Education Week speaker and an EFY Director. John also served as a member of a stake high council, and was serving in a bishopric during the months leading up to his decision to leave the LDS Church. John and Brooke resigned their membership of the LDS Church in August of 2011.  This is their story. Part 1: Growing…

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222-227: Understanding Atheism after Mormonism

December 30, 2010
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222-227: Understanding Atheism after Mormonism

In this multi-part interview, Dan Wotherspoon interviews Tyson Jacobsen and Randy Snyder about their transition from devout Mormonism to atheism.

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205-206: Mr. Deity’s Brian Dalton

October 20, 2010
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205-206: Mr. Deity’s Brian Dalton

In this episode we interview Brian Dalton, a former member of the LDS church, and founder of the Mr. Deity Internet TV series — which explores religious belief from a skeptical point of view, using satire.  Mr. Deity focuses on the every-day life God, and everything He must endure as He attempts to manage His creation. In part 1, we discuss Brian’s early years, his experience with the LDS church, his disaffection from the church, his views on religion, and the making of Mr. Deity.  Towards the end, we are very blessed to spend a few minutes with Mr. Deity…

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164-167: Richard Packham and How the LDS Church Creates Unnecessary Enemies

June 28, 2010
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164-167: Richard Packham and How the LDS Church Creates Unnecessary Enemies

(Note: Segment 3 of this interview has been removed from the podcast feed — out of respect for the family members involved, and due to legal and other concerns). In this 4-part series, we interview Richard Packham — co-founder of the Ex-Mormon foundation.  Throughout the interview and via Richard’s own personal story, we explore 3 ways in which the LDS Church creates unnecessary enemies: Episode 1: By not being honest about its own history (e.g. teaching accurate history) Episode 2: By breaking up families (when one no longer believes) Episode 3: By  harming the loved ones of those who have…

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157-159: How to Improve Your Marriage After One of You Loses Their Testimony

June 3, 2010
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157-159: How to Improve Your Marriage After One of You Loses Their Testimony

In this 3-part series, Dan and Laurie Gallagher discuss Laurie’s loss of faith in the LDS Church (while Dan remains a believer), and how that led to an actual strengthening of their marriage and family relationships.

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139-140: The LDS Conversion and De-Conversion of Heather

April 7, 2010
By

This is a 2-part interview with Heather, a friend who converted to the LDS church as a college student in Texas, moved to BYU, married the son of a Stake President in the temple, and then afterwards her husband left the church, and she soon followed. Heather talks about why she joined, why she left, and ways that we (as members) can better understand those who leave. This interview was recorded in 2007.

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135-136: Mormon Comedian Bengt Washburn Parts 1 and 2

March 21, 2010
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In this series I interview Mormon comedian Bengt Washburn.  Bengt has been featured on television (Comedy Central’s Live at Gotham and  The Late Late Show with Craig Fergusen) as well as on radio (including The Bob and Tom Show, The Bob Rivers Show, The KQRS Morning Show, NPR, PRI, the CBC and XM Radio).  I think he’s hilarious. WARNING: Bengt occasionally uses profane language, and there is some sexually explicit material (I’d give it a PG-13 rating).  Viewer/listener discretion is advised.

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