Ex-Mormon Stories

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
DSCN4572

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
WYDKAR_Blue_2

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
By
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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
By
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
By
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
By
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
By

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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126-128: Born Again Mormon Shawn McCraney

February 24, 2010
By

In this episode I interview Shawn McCraney, author of “I was a Born-again Mormon” and host of “Heart of the Matter“, a controversial weekly Christian TV show geared towards LDS Church members. In part 1, Shawn discusses his born again experience, and makes his best case for why LDS Church members should also seek to become Born Again. In part 2, I ask Shawn several questions about his style, doctrine and theology. In part 3, I ask Shawn some final questions, and he shares some closing thoughts.

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122: Peter and Mary Danzig Pt. 4 – Rebuilding a Life Without the LDS Church

February 10, 2010
By
122: Peter and Mary Danzig Pt. 4 – Rebuilding a Life Without the LDS Church

In this episode Peter and Mary Danzig discuss life after resigning from the LDS Church, including how they are raising their children as former members, reworking their relationships with extended family, and their new life/spiritual perspectives.  They also discuss their recent work  the Foundation for Reconciliation, which seeks reconciliation between the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Gays and Lesbians The music from this episode was played live during the interview.  For more about the Danzig’s music, check out their web site here.

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121: Peter and Mary Danzig Pt. 3 – Removed from the Orchestra at Temple Square, Silenced, Threatened with Discipline, Resigning from the LDS Church

February 10, 2010
By
121: Peter and Mary Danzig Pt. 3 – Removed from the Orchestra at Temple Square, Silenced, Threatened with Discipline, Resigning from the LDS Church

In this episode Peter and Mary Danzig discuss Peter’s removal from the Orchestra at Temple Square because of his letter to the editor opposing professor Jeffrey Nielson’s termination from BYU (over Dr. Nielson’s public support of gay marriage).   They also discuss his local church leadership’s request for silence, the threats of church discipline, his and Mary’s ultimate decision to resign from the LDS Church, and Craig Jessop’s resignation as Director of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. The music from this episode was played live during the interview.  For more about the Danzig’s music, check out their web site here.

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120: Peter and Mary Danzig Pt. 2 – Gaining Sympathy for Homosexuals, Losing His Testimony, and Writing a Letter to the Editor

February 9, 2010
By
120: Peter and Mary Danzig Pt. 2 – Gaining Sympathy for Homosexuals, Losing His Testimony, and Writing a Letter to the Editor

In this episode Peter Danzig discusses how his experience as a social worker to (primarily) LDS Church members led to an increase in sympathy for LDS homosexuals, a loss of his traditional LDS testimony, and his decision to write a letter to the editor of the Salt Lake Tribune to protest the action taken against former BYU Professor Jeffrey Nielson, and the LDS Church’s urging of members to support a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. The music from this episode was played live during the interview.  For more about the Danzig’s music, check out their web site here.

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119: Peter and Mary Danzig Pt. 1 – The Early Years

February 5, 2010
By
Danzigs

In this episode John Dehlin speaks with former LDS Church members Peter and Mary Danzig about their early years as faithful LDS church members, their mission experiences, their marriage, their joining as founding members of the Orchestra at Temple Square, and the origins of their interest in the topic of homosexuality. The music from this episode was played live during the interview.  For more about the Danzig’s music, check out their web site here.

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104: Elbert Peck and Sunstone Magazine Pt. 1 – The Early Years

December 10, 2007
By

Elbert Eugene Peck was editor of Sunstone Magazine from 1986 to 2001. In part 1 of a 4 part interview, Elbert discusses his early years as a member of the LDS church in Washington D.C., his mission, his time at BYU with the Seventh East Press, and the events leading to him taking over Sunstone Magazine.

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077-083: “Understanding the September Six” — Paul Toscano Parts 1 – 7

October 31, 2007
By

When the history of 20th century Mormonism is written, Paul Toscano will likely go down as one of the most controversial and divisive figures of that era. Paul is the husband of Margaret Toscano, and was excommunicated (along with 4 others and 1 disfellowshipment) during the infamous “September Six” incident in September of 1993.  This is Paul’s story — as told in his own words. Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5 Part 6 Part 7 I feel that interviews like this are essential within Mormonism for at least a few reasons: For those interested in Mormon…

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030-033: An Insider’s View of Mormon Origins — An Interview with Grant Palmer

May 15, 2006
By

In this episode of Mormon Stories, we interview Grant Palmer–author of the book entitled “An Insider’s View of Mormon Origins. During this episode we cover Joseph Smith’s treasure seeking and usage of peep stones, the actual mechanics of the Book of Mormon translation process, the recorded accounts of the witnesses to the Book of Mormon, the multiple versions of Joseph Smith’s First Vision story, and the evolution of the LDS Priesthood accounts over time. In episode 4, Grant discusses the early reactions to his book, his trial with the LDS Church for apostacy (which ultimately led to disfellowship), his thoughts…

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003: Inside the Mind of an “Anti-Mormon”

September 4, 2005
By

Today we interview a young man named Hyrum, founder of the thechurchisnottrue.com web site. In this interview, Hyrum tells his story of why he left the Mormon church.

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