Mormon Stories - LDS (general)

In this episode, we interview Brynne Thomas Gant -- the author of "They Can Leave the Church, But They Can't Leave the Church Alone"

Direct download: MormonStories-760-BrynneThomasGant.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am MST

In this episode of Mormon Stories, we interview Savannah and her mother, Heather.

In this episode of Mormon Stories we interview Savannah and her mother, Heather.  Savannah recently generated international media attention when she came out as gay to her Mormon ward (congregation) in Eagle Mountain, Utah during fast and testimony meeting (May 7, 2017).  Towards the end of her testimony, a presiding priesthood authority cut off her microphone and told her to sit down.  A friend recorded the video of her live testimony.

In this episode John interviews both Savannah and Heather in order to provide the context for Savannah's testimony that day.  Questions answered in this episode include:

*What was Savannah's relationship with the Mormon church prior to her testimony?
*Why did Savannah want to come out as gay to her ward?  
*Why did she write out her testimony beforehand?
*Why did Savannah's parents "allow" her to bear her testimony in this way?
*Who recorded Savannah's testimony, and why?
*How did Savannah and her mother feel when the microphone was cut off, and Savannah was asked to sit down by her Mormon priesthood leader?
*Was this event a conspiracy orchestrated by Savannah's parents?
*What has been the reaction to these events?
*What do Savannah and Heather hope to accomplish by talking about this publicly?
*What would Savannah and Heather like to say to LGBT Mormons and their family/friends?

Special thanks to Heather and Savannah for visiting with the Mormon Stories crew and sharing her beautiful story!

Direct download: MormonStories-759-Savannah.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:19am MST

In this episode of Mormon Stories and Mormon Transitions, John and Margi reflect back on their 13 years of experience as semi- and non-believers and provide their advice on how to successfully navigate activity in the LDS Church.  Some of the topics discussed are:

*Advice on how to determine whether church attendance is a healthy option for you and your family

*Living the “Law of Tithing” in a way that is meaningful to you

*Focusing on teaching lessons about truths that resonate with you, and less on the topics that trouble you as they most likely will be covered many other times

*How to respond to inquiries about your activity status from fellow ward members

*Setting boundaries and expectations when given a calling

*Protecting your children by having an open discussion after church that allows them to safely process and talk through the information 

*Building social credit in your ward to spend thoughtfully when the time arrives

*Advice on how to ethically navigate the temple recommend interview

*Answering the question “can you be honest and ethical in staying?”

Direct download: MormonStories-758-StayingActiveInTheChurch.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:53am MST

Continuing our series on “Losing the Lamanites,” we interview Sarah Newcomb who descends from the Tsimshian of the NW Coastal Tribes. In this interview we cover:

*How Sarah struggled as a youth knowing that she came from the ‘Lamanites,’ who had turned their backs on God.
*How she worked her way through college in Rexburg, ID, acquired a degree in Communications/Journalism, and how her new knowledge around sourcing served as an impetus to her questioning her faith.
*How her husband ignored the Mormon admonition against interracial marriage, out of love for Sarah.
*Her avoidance of dancing (and other native customs), as they were practiced by the ’Lamanites’ in the Book of Mormon.
*Her avoidance of the sun, as a way to ensure that her skin would stay as light as possible.
*How she used her knowledge of sourcing (seeking original documentation) to discover many of the problems with LDS church history and doctrine, all before discovering the CES Letter.
*How Mormon Stories Podcast validated her feelings, and provided strength and a sense of community during her faith transition.
*How she now embraces her life in the sun, and is on a journey to connect to the heritage and identity she felt forced to distance herself from while a member of the LDS Church.

We thank Sarah for sharing her powerful, beautiful story and know that it will touch lives!

Direct download: MormonStories-757-SarahNewcomb.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:30am MST

We are excited to release an interview with Jen Parkinson that has many fascinating components, including:

*Her devout LDS upbringing and bout with perfectionism while a youth and as a missionary

*Her first marriage to a gay man, unbeknownst to her

*Experiences with LDS Family Services in addressing her husband’s sexual orientation

*Her resulting divorce and intense feelings of guilt and shame

*The experience of seeking a sealing cancellation and how it made her relive the nightmare of her divorce

*Dating and marrying her current husband

*Working for BYU-Idaho and the gender disparity she observed

*Her husband’s faith transition and her reaction to it by “quintupling down” on her beliefs

*How leaving her job at BYU gave her the freedom to learn and question

*Her own faith transition and hope for the future

Direct download: MormonStories-756-JenParkinsonPt3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:13am MST

We are excited to release an interview with Jen Parkinson that has many fascinating components, including:

*Her devout LDS upbringing and bout with perfectionism while a youth and as a missionary

*Her first marriage to a gay man, unbeknownst to her

*Experiences with LDS Family Services in addressing her husband’s sexual orientation

*Her resulting divorce and intense feelings of guilt and shame

*The experience of seeking a sealing cancellation and how it made her relive the nightmare of her divorce

*Dating and marrying her current husband

*Working for BYU-Idaho and the gender disparity she observed

*Her husband’s faith transition and her reaction to it by “quintupling down” on her beliefs

*How leaving her job at BYU gave her the freedom to learn and question

*Her own faith transition and hope for the future

Direct download: MormonStories-755-JenParkinsonPt2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:11am MST

We are excited to release an interview with Jen Parkinson that has many fascinating components, including:

*Her devout LDS upbringing and bout with perfectionism while a youth and as a missionary

*Her first marriage to a gay man, unbeknownst to her

*Experiences with LDS Family Services in addressing her husband’s sexual orientation

*Her resulting divorce and intense feelings of guilt and shame

*The experience of seeking a sealing cancellation and how it made her relive the nightmare of her divorce

*Dating and marrying her current husband

*Working for BYU-Idaho and the gender disparity she observed

*Her husband’s faith transition and her reaction to it by “quintupling down” on her beliefs

*How leaving her job at BYU gave her the freedom to learn and question

*Her own faith transition and hope for the future

Direct download: MormonStories-754-JenParkinsonPt1.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:08am MST

In these episodes of Mormon Stories, we interview Derrick Clements—a new contributor to “The Cheeky Mormon Movie Review” podcast series with Gina Colvin, avid podcaster, and reporter for Provo’s Daily Herald.

In part 2, Derrick shares his beliefs and reasons for remaining active in the LDS Church and the important role personal honesty and integrity play in that decision. As a general rule, Derrick avoids dogma and does not rely heavily on truth claims as the root of his faith.

Derrick and John answer the difficult questions such as:

  • “Is it disingenuous to stay active in the LDS Church with knowledge of ‘problems’ of historicity and knowing the harm the church inflicts on groups of people, like LGBTQ individuals?”
  • “Are the people who remain complicit in that harm?”
  • “Should the teachings of the church be taken literally or metaphorically?”
Direct download: MormonStories-753-DerrickClementsMiddleWayPt2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:36pm MST

In these episodes of Mormon Stories, we interview Derrick Clements—a new contributor to “The Cheeky Mormon Movie Review” podcast series with Gina Colvin, avid podcaster, and reporter for Provo’s Daily Herald.

Derrick and John begin part 1 by discussing categories of people who remain active in the LDS Church, including those who are:

Unaware of church “problems”

Unable to leave without massive disruption in their lives

Unempathetic to those the church harms

Staying to improve the church

Genuinely spiritually converted

Motivated to stay for tribal / identity sentiments

Direct download: MormonStories-752-DerrickClementsMiddleWayPt1.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:25pm MST

This episode is a recording of Dr. John Dehlin's goodbye presentation to Cache Valley Oasis - a secular support community formed in Fall of 2015 in Logan, Utah.

In his presentation (recorded May 21, 2017), John shared reflections of "lessons" he has learned over the course of 13 years as a Mormon/Post-Mormon activist.

Direct download: MormonStories-751-JohnDehlinLessonsLearned.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:01pm MST