Mormon Stories - LDS

Join John and Carah at 10am mst for a special live interview with Austin Archer as we discuss the Mormon to alcoholic pipeline, sobriety, and his success on TikTok.

Follow Austin @yourpal_austin on TikTok

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Show Notes:

Direct download: MormonStories-1525-AustinArcherPt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:53am MDT

Join John and Carah for a special live interview with Austin Archer as we discuss the Mormon to alcoholic pipeline, sobriety, and his success on TikTok.

Follow Austin @yourpal_austin on TikTok

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We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

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Show Notes:

Direct download: MormonStories-1524-AustinArcherPt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:38am MDT

Chandler Roberson was raised as a devout Mormon, and always wanted to be the best Mormon she could be.  In her teenage years Chandler had a few abusive relationships with Mormon boys, where she felt forced to “repent” for “sins” she never committed. Her senior year Chandler felt pressured to break up with a non-LDS boy whom she genuinely loved, and to attend BYU-Idaho to follow the ideal Mormon path.

While at BYU-Idaho Chandler was sexually assaulted by her Family Home Evening “brother,” which led to her leaving BYU-Idaho early, ultimately attempting to serve an LDS mission with untreated PTSD (returning home early).

Chandler eventually became a nationally-known fashion blogger at “Days of Chandler.”  Later, Chandler attempted two young LDS temple marriages, both of which ended in divorce.  In her view, she was too young to attempt marriage, but felt intense pressure from LDS Church members to marry young.

This is Chandler’s story.  Major themes include:

- Pressure to be a “good Mormon girl” (all on women’s shoulders)

- BYU-Idaho (dating/sexism, sexual assault problem at BYU schools)

- Fashion Blogging (similar pressure to be a certain way – inauthentic/beautiful)

- Personal impacts of being raised in the church ( codependency, sexual shame, etc)

- Pressure to get married (twice).

We are super grateful to have Samantha Shelley (Zelph on the Shelf) as co-host for this interview.

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1523-ChandlerPt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 11:07am MDT

Chandler Roberson was raised as a devout Mormon, and always wanted to be the best Mormon she could be. In her teenage years Chandler had a few abusive relationships with Mormon boys, where she felt forced to “repent” for “sins” she never committed. Her senior year Chandler felt pressured to break up with a non-LDS boy whom she genuinely loved, and to attend BYU-Idaho to follow the ideal Mormon path.

While at BYU-Idaho Chandler was sexually assaulted by her Family Home Evening “brother,” which led to her leaving BYU-Idaho early, ultimately attempting to serve an LDS mission with untreated PTSD (returning home early).

Chandler eventually became a nationally-known fashion blogger at “Days of Chandler.” Later, Chandler attempted two young LDS temple marriages, both of which ended in divorce. In her view, she was too young to attempt marriage, but felt intense pressure from LDS Church members to marry young.

This is Chandler’s story. Major themes include:

- Pressure to be a “good Mormon girl” (all on women’s shoulders)
- BYU-Idaho (dating/sexism, sexual assault problem at BYU schools)
- Fashion Blogging (similar pressure to be a certain way – inauthentic/beautiful)
- Personal impacts of being raised in the church ( codependency, sexual shame, etc)
- Pressure to get married (twice).

We are super grateful to have Samantha Shelley (Zelph on the Shelf) as co-host for this interview.

Show Notes:

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*PO Box 171085

Salt Lake City, UT 84117

Direct download: MormonStories-1522-ChandlerPt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 12:12pm MDT

In part two of our interview, Matt and Stephanie Purcell dive into the effects infertility and postpartum depression took on them, the wheels that started turning in their heads after the 2015 exclusion policy, and much, much more. We are so lucky to get to hear Matt and Stephanie's journey and hope you enjoy Carah Burrell as your host on this epic two-part Mormon Story!

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1521-PurcellPt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 3:11am MDT

BYU professor of religion, mission president, temple president, LDS church area authority, personal friend of Mormon prophet Gordon B. Hinckley, and likely recipient of the top secret Mormon church Second Anointing ritual.

In today's episode Matt tells his story of being one of several victims of sexual abuse by his grandfather - who served at some of the highest levels of Mormon church leadership. Matt is joined by Stephanie, his wife. Both share their Mormon stories, which include their faith journeys after discovering problematic Mormon church history.

**Trigger warning on this episode***

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1520-PurcellPt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 3:05am MDT

Join John Dehlin and Radio Free Mormon as we speak with Dan Vogel about his new book, “ Book of Abraham Apologetics: A Review and Critique” published by Signature Books.

Said to have been dictated by Joseph Smith as a translation of an ancient Egyptian scroll purchased in Kirtland, Ohio, in 1835, the Book of Abraham may be Mormonism’s most controversial scripture. Decades of impassioned discussion began when about a dozen fragments of Smith’s Egyptian papyri, including a facsimile from the Book of Abraham, were found in the New York Metropolitan Museum in 1966. The discovery solved a mystery about the origin of the Egyptian characters that appear in the various manuscript copies of the Book of Abraham from 1835, reproduced from one of the fragments. Some LDS scholars devised arguments to explain what seemed to be clear evidence of Smith’s inability to translate Egyptian. In this book, Dan Vogel not only highlights the problems with these apologetic arguments but explains the underlying source documents in revealing detail and clarity.

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Show Notes:

Direct download: MormonStories-1519-DanVogell.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 12:00pm MDT

Join John Dehlin and Carah Burrell as they speak with John Larsen about the Gospel of Mark. In this episode we have John pull back the cover on the bible, what we can learn from the oldest gospels, and ask if the Mormon church as it currently stands is any different than the Pharisees of Christ’s day.

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Links and show notes: 

Direct download: MormonStories-1518-JohnLarsenMark.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 3:20pm MDT

Mark your calendars!  THRIVE is coming to a city near you!  On January 22, 2022 up to 22 cities will be holding regional THRIVE events - dedicated to providing healing, support, and community for post-Mormons and post-religious people.  

Participating cities currently include: Alberta, Canada, Phoenix, AZ, Provo, UT, Lehi, UT, Bristol, UK, Seattle, WA, Costa Mesa, CA, Houston, TX, Sacramento, CA, Las Vegas, NV, Idaho Falls, ID, Atlanta, GA, Portland, OR, and Albuquerque, NM.

Please join this brief episode to learn about each of the planned events, and how you can organize your own local THRIVE UNITE event in your city.

You can register for THRIVE UNITE here: https://www.thrivebeyondreligion.com/event/thrive-unite/

To organize your own local THRIVE UNITE event, email: thrivebeyondreligion@gmail.com.

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Direct download: MormonStories-1518-THRIVEUNITE2022.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 1:12pm MDT

Anthony Magnabosco has been such a good sport all week taking us into the world of Street Epistemology and we are so thankful to our dedicated Mormon Stories listeners going on this journey with us! In this final interview, Carah and John decide to roleplay as believing Mormon parents and let Anthony play the part of the son who has lost their faith as he utilizes SE techniques in a way that helps soften the blow.

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1516-AnthonyMagnaboscoPt5.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:28am MDT

Street Epistemology week continues with Anthony Magnabosco and special guest exMormon Christian pastor Shawn McCraney. After building the foundation of SE with episodes 1-3, in part 4, Shawn is kind enough to play our interlocutor as Anthony questions him about the roots of his religious beliefs. You’ll likely be very surprised with the way this interview progresses as Anthony does his best to display Street Epistemology in the Mormon Stories studio!

Show Notes:

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Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1516-AnthonyMagnaboscoPt4.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 11:04am MDT

Anthony Magnabosco is back in the Mormon Stories studio for our third interview, this time discussing the fundamentals of Street Epistemology! We go over what people tend to say to believers that isn’t helpful, the ethical framework of SE such as informed content, and address criticisms of the method. We hope you enjoy this fascinating discussion and give us feedback if you decide to dive into learning Street Epistemology yourself!

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1515-AnthonyMagnaboscoPt3.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 9:54am MDT

Today Mormon Stories is honored to talk with Anthony Magnabosco about his Catholic background, development of the Street Epistemology interviewing technique, and a discussion about the atheist community at large. We hope you enjoy this first-of-its-kind interview to get to know Anthony better and continue to join us all week long as we dive into the world of Street Epistemology!

Show Notes:

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Show Notes:

Direct download: MormonStories-1514-AnthonyMagnaboscoPt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:58am MDT

Mormon Stories is excited to be joined in studio each day this week by Anthony Magnabosco for an exciting introduction into the world of Street Epistemology! 

In part 1, airing live, Carah and John play clips from Anthony's well-known YouTube channel where he practices Street Epistemology to give Mormon Stories listeners a feel for the technique Anthony, and others like him with "Street Epistemology International", use in conversations with various random people on the street to find out if they have good reasons to believe their claims.

Join us Monday at 11am mountain time for this introductory episode and don't miss our week of Anthony Magnabosco interviews!

Show Notes:

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Show Notes:

Direct download: MormonStories-1513-StreetEpistemologyIntro.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 3:19pm MDT

A strong trigger warning for the following episode for discussions around conversion therapy, descriptions of torture, anorexia, and suicide. Mormon Stories is honored to have conversion therapy survivor, suicide survivor, and LGBT+ advocate Nate Winterton on to tell their harrowing story. If you thought the days of Mormon electroshock torture were relics of the past, Nate recounts what they endured at the hands of an LDS “therapist” as recently as 2016. Growing up with enormous health challenges, Nate recognized feelings of same-sex attraction early on in their childhood.

We discuss Nate’s staunch commitment to the Mormon faith, anorexia while serving a mission, and Nate’s decision to confide in a bishop about their feelings for men, leading Nate to a house and a therapist that would change the course of their life.

Please practice self-care as you listen to this episode as we highlight the unfortunate reality that the practice of conversion therapy and torture to change the sexual orientation of gay Mormons continues still today.

**Trigger warning on this episode***

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Direct download: MormonStories-1511-NateWinterton.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 11:12pm MDT

As part of our longstanding and undying commitment to organizational transparency, please join me for a spontaneous Q&A about Mormon Stories Podcast, the Open Stories Foundation, the THRIVE Foundation, and any other topic you want us to discuss!  Please post your questions in the comments below!!!

This video was made primarily as a response to what we believe was an unprofessional and unbalanced inquiry into the THRIVE Foundation by Peggy Fletcher Stack and Tony Semerad of the Salt Lake Tribune.

This is my second attempt at a response.  My first response was a little angrier than I wanted it to be (I'm calling that the "caffeinated version"), and so I am rerecording to invoke my wiser self ("decaffeinated version"). The substance will remain the same, although the slides are slightly improved.

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Direct download: MormonStories-1510-TransperancyQA.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 3:37pm MDT

The holidays are among us! But if you're feeling like relationships with family and friends have fractured since your faith crisis and need help navigating sensitive topics, we invite you to join this important Mormon Stories episode with Margi, John and Carah.

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Show Notes:

Direct download: MormonStories-1510-MargiChristmasAfterFaithCrisis.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 12:00pm MDT

Friends! 🎁 Do you value Mormon Stories Podcast? 🎄 Please help us beat last year’s fundraising goal! Or if you’d prefer, Facebook may even match your donation!  https://www.facebook.com/donate/321279426221728/

2021 has been an incredible year for Mormon Stories Podcast. Improvements include:

  • We made significant investments in camera and lighting equipment (thanks Gerardo!).
  • We brought on Carah Burrell as co-host and producer for the podcast.
  • We launched a highly successful TikTok channel, and have increased our Instagram efforts to help reach new audiences.
  • We have significantly grown our YouTube audience, and
  • We’ve made strides in providing time codes and show notes/links on every episode as well as shorter clips available on our Understanding Mormonism YouTube channel to better disseminate our content and information.

We have major plans for 2022 and beyond! Help us beat last year's campaign, and thank you for all of your support!!!!  And again, if you're not on Facebook, you can always donate here.

 

Direct download: GivingTuesday2021.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 4:01pm MDT

A strong trigger warning leads off this special Mormon Stories episode with our guest who prefers to be referred to as “Rachel '' for this interview. We discuss Rachel’s father being called as a mission president, the abuse she endured, and the subsequent cover-up from those in positions of power in the LDS church.

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Show notes:

Direct download: MormonStories-1509-LDSAbuseCoverUp.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:50am MDT

Is there space in the Mormon church for non-literal believers? Mormon Stories is joined today by Jon Westover, professor and former church apologist with FAIR Mormon to help us discover if the non-orthodox  “middle way” is still a tenable path. We hope you enjoy hearing Jon’s story! 

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Show notes:

Direct download: MormonStories-1508-JonWestover.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:00am MDT

Sarah Edmondson and Nippy Ames are our guests for this epic Mormon Stories interview where we discuss their escape from the NXIVM cult. We discuss the similarities between NXIVM leader Keith Raniere and Joseph Smith, the secret societies that existed within the cult, and the tipping point that forced Sarah and Nippy to become a united front to take Keith down. We hope you’ll resonate with Sarah and Nippy’s fascinating and gripping story!

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Show notes and links:

Direct download: MormonStories-1406-SarahNippy.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:00am MDT

Mormon Stories is honored to sit down with Cody Alan, host and producer of CMT Radio in Nashville, TN. In this fun and heartfelt interview, we discuss Cody's conversion to the LDS church as well as his suppression and acceptance of his gay identity. Cody shares so much wisdom with us and we hear some fun stories about his life in country radio and the musical artists who have supported him through this long and hard journey to come out. We hope you enjoy our interview with Cody and support him by purchasing a copy of his new book, "Hear's the Thing: Lessons on Listening, Life, and Love".

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Direct download: MormonStories-1506-CodyAlan.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 8:35am MDT

Recently in a speech given at the University of Virginia, Mormon apostle Elder Dallin H. Oaks denied that Electroshock Therapy as a form of gay conversion therapy was used/studied during his tenure as president of Brigham Young University in the 1970s.

Join us on 11/18/2021 at 3pm (mountain) where we will discuss the history of Electroshock Therapy at BYU - and determine whether or not Dallin H. Oaks was being truthful when he denied that gay Electroshock therapy was used/studied at BYU during his time as BYU President. We will be joined by historian Connell O'Donovan and Kyle Ashworth.

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1505-OaksElectroShockTherapy.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 9:37am MDT

Recently in a speech given at the University of Virginia, Mormon apostle Elder Dallin H. Oaks denied that Electroshock Therapy as a form of gay conversion therapy was used/studied during his tenure as president of Brigham Young University in the 1970s.

Join us on 11/18/2021 at 3pm (mountain) where we will discuss the history of Electroshock Therapy at BYU - and determine whether or not Dallin H. Oaks was being truthful when he denied that gay Electroshock therapy was used/studied at BYU during his time as BYU President. We will be joined by historian Connell O'Donovan and Kyle Ashworth.

Show Notes:

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We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

Click here to donate monthly: $10 $25 $50

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MSP on Spotify

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MSP Blog

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Contact Us!

*MormonStories@gmail.com

*PO Box 171085

Salt Lake City, UT 84117

Direct download: MormonStories-1504-OaksLGBTchanges.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 9:52am MDT

What happens when two closeted lesbian Mormon women marry men, have children, then cross paths and fall in love? In this very special Mormon Stories 2 part episode, we are honored to share one of the most important interviews in the history of the podcast. This is the story of Lena Schwen and Sal Osborne. In part 1, Sal describes dating in high school, feeling as though part of her died as she married a man in the LDS temple, and struggling with her ex-husband and band mate as they toured in the group “Love You Long Time”. Lena, a teenage convert from a divorced Catholtic Italian home, takes us through the heartbreaking events that led to her conversion into the LDS church. Lena has a truly unique story and fascinating perspectives from the eyes of a convert! We end part one with Lena realizing that raising children with the values taught by the LDS church made her feel like her time being a dedicated Mormon wife was running out. We hope you’ll tune in to part 2 to hear how these two amazing women overcame enormous hurdles to become the couple they are today!

Show Notes:

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We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

Click here to donate monthly: $10 $25 $50

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We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

Click here to donate monthly: $10 $25 $50

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Contact Us!

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*PO Box 171085

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Direct download: MormonStories-1503-LenaSalPt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:37am MDT

What happens when two closeted lesbian Mormon women marry men, have children, then cross paths and fall in love? In this very special Mormon Stories 2 part episode, we are honored to share one of the most important interviews in the history of the podcast. This is the story of Lena Schwen and Sal Osborne. In part 1, Sal describes dating in high school, feeling as though part of her died as she married a man in the LDS temple, and struggling with her ex-husband and band mate as they toured in the group “Love You Long Time”. Lena, a teenage convert from a divorced Catholtic Italian home, takes us through the heartbreaking events that led to her conversion into the LDS church. Lena has a truly unique story and fascinating perspectives from the eyes of a convert! We end part one with Lena realizing that raising children with the values taught by the LDS church made her feel like her time being a dedicated Mormon wife was running out. We hope you’ll tune in to part 2 to hear how these two amazing women overcame enormous hurdles to become the couple they are today!

Show Notes:

—————

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

Click here to donate monthly: $10 $25 $50

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MSP on Spotify

MSP on Apple Podcasts

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Contact Us!

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*PO Box 171085

Salt Lake City, UT 84117

Direct download: MormonStories-1502-LenaSalPt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 11:57am MDT

Join us this Wednesday at noon as Luna Corbden, Marc Oslund, Gerardo, and John discuss the Mormon Church's efforts to use the psychological theory of inoculation to pre-expose the youth to weakened versions of the troubling history through an updated CES and Sunday School curriculum. 

"... Please, before you send them into the world, inoculate your students by providing faithful, thoughtful, and accurate interpretation of gospel doctrine, the scriptures, our history, and those topics that are sometimes misunderstood.

The effort for gospel transparency and spiritual inoculation through a thoughtful study of doctrine and history, coupled with a burning testimony, is the best antidote we have to help students avoid and/or deal with questions, doubt, or faith crises they may face in this information age."

M. Russell Ballard, February 26, 2016

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/broadcasts/article/evening-with-a-general-authority/2016/02/the-opportunities-and-responsibilities-of-ces-teachers-in-the-21st-century?lang=eng

Show Notes:

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*PO Box 171085

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Direct download: MormonStories-1501-MormonInoculation.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 12:27pm MDT

James Jesse Strang (March 21, 1813 – July 9, 1856) was an American religious leader, politician and self-proclaimed monarch. In 1844 he claimed to have been appointed to be the successor of Joseph Smith as leader of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Strangite),[a] a faction of the Latter Day Saint movement. Strang testified that he had possession of a letter from Smith naming him as his successor, and furthermore reported that he had been ordained to the prophetic office by an angel. His organization is claimed by his followers to be the sole legitimate continuation of the Church of Christ founded by Joseph Smith fourteen years before. (Source: Wikipedia)

Show notes:

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We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

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Direct download: MormonStories-1500-JohnLarsenJamesStrang.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 4:29pm MDT

THRIVEDAY is 11 days away!  The speaker lineup and music are epic. 

Also, we have added a reception/open bar/karaoke night on 11/13 at 7pm.  I'd love to party with you all!

Our only goals are to: 1) Inspire and give Ex-Mormons hope and healing, and 2) Help Ex-Mormons find friends and community.  

Please come if you are seeking any of this.  Would love to see you there!

Registration is here! 

https://www.thrivebeyondreligion.com/event/thrive-day-2021

Direct download: MormonStories-THRIVEDAY2021.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 12:21pm MDT

John Dehlin has never been so lucky!

He’s joined today by the folks who have been dubbed “The Britvengers”, a collection of progressive and post Mormons who all have one thing in common, they’re British! 

They will be discussing what is being called “The British Rescue”. On Halloween Weekend 3 Senior Apostles are coming and addressing the UK membership. Is this a rescue?

The Britvengers are:

  • Nemo the Mormon https://www.youtube.com/c/NEMOTHEMORMON
  • Peter Bleakley https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNYIeulcLs85NLINDyxzHQQ
  • 21st Century Saints https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLESyNtVAdYF52HVt5Cu-Ew
  • Laura & Julian Heath https://www.facebook.com/groups/143828186747679
  • Priesthood Dispatches https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCx5yNRufseSR_JxYC8GJ2iA

Show Notes:

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We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

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MSP on Spotify

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*PO Box 171085

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Direct download: MormonStories-1499-BritishRescue.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 2:38pm MDT

Mormon Stories is honored to welcome American historian and author Newell Bringhurt on the podcast to discuss the life of Fawn Brodie, author of “No Man Knows My History: The Life of Joseph Smith”. We discuss Newell’s biography of Fawn Brodie, her life as niece of LDS prophet David O. McKay, her faith, her influences to write one of the most influential books in Mormon history, and its reception by the church.

Show notes:

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We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

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Direct download: MormonStories-1498-NewellBringhurst.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 1:37pm MDT

Join us with Australian geneticist Simon Southerton as we break down with Australian geneticist Simon Southerton the Heartland model of Book of Mormon geography which proposes that the events described in the Book of Mormon took place, primarily, in the heartland of North America. The main proponent of this model, Rodney Meldrum, and his followers have been described as a "movement" that could transform the LDS Church.

Simon will explain how one of the main pieces of "evidence" that the FIRM enterprise promotes is built on a single questionable claim which Meldrum has been making for over 15 years even after being corrected by several non-Mormon scientists, Simon himself, FairMormon, and LDS scholars at BYU, including Ugo Perego.

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1497-BreakingDownRodMeldrumsHeartlandModel.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 4:56pm MDT

Join us today for an important discussion! In this special Mormon Stories live stream, Carah Burrell is honored to talk with excommunicated Mormon sex therapist Natasha Helfer to discuss the criticism of her found in Cwic Media’s video about her disciplinary council. Natasha and Carah plan to go point by point to address various accusations about her intentions and hopefully foster a better understanding of what constitutes healthy sexuality for people in and out of the LDS church.

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1496-NatashaHelferRespondingtoGregMatsen.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 2:00pm MDT

Join Margi, John, and Carah as Margi discusses the Conscious Parenting model, and how it can help with parenting “when all else fails.”

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Direct download: MormonStories-1495-MargiDehlinMilkshakes.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 5:47pm MDT

Please join us as John and Gerardo respond to a recent interview on the Mayim Bialik's Breakdown podcast where David Archuleta shared his experience being Mormon and gay.

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Direct download: MormonStories-1494-DavidArchuletaResponse.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 9:59am MDT

McKay ‘Spartacus’ Johnson is our guest today for this fantastic two-part Mormon Stories interview. Carah Burrell takes the reins again as lead interviewer as we talk to McKay about battling a “Nephi complex” growing up, early exposure to pornography, and his mission to Brasil where he describes being groomed by his mission companion and sexually assaulted. It’s an intense and undercover topic and we thank McKay for coming on the podcast to share his experience being a male sexual assault survivor.

In part two, McKay tells us about what it was like to heal from his mission and deconstruct the homophobic ideas he carried with him after his assault. Eventually getting married and divorced, we discuss with McKay what happened the night he confessed to his wife he had been occasionally viewing pornography and what can be done in Mormon culture to shift the unhelpful and counterproductive labeling of men like McKay. McKay is also a talented TikToker and musician, so we are happy he could find time to take a break from playing rock god to join us on Mormon Stories and we hope you’ll support him wherever his talents take him! 

Content warning: This episode contains discussion of sexual assault.

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Direct download: MormonStories-1493-MckayJohnsonPt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:18am MDT

McKay ‘Spartacus’ Johnson is our guest today for this fantastic two-part Mormon Stories interview. Carah Burrell takes the reins again as lead interviewer as we talk to McKay about battling a “Nephi complex” growing up, early exposure to pornography, and his mission to Brasil where he describes being groomed by his mission companion and sexually assaulted. It’s an intense and undercover topic and we thank McKay for coming on the podcast to share his experience being a male sexual assault survivor.

In part two, McKay tells us about what it was like to heal from his mission and deconstruct the homophobic ideas he carried with him after his assault. Eventually getting married and divorced, we discuss with McKay what happened the night he confessed to his wife he had been occasionally viewing pornography and what can be done in Mormon culture to shift the unhelpful and counterproductive labeling of men like McKay. McKay is also a talented TikToker and musician, so we are happy he could find time to take a break from playing rock god to join us on Mormon Stories and we hope you’ll support him wherever his talents take him! 

Content warning: This episode contains discussion of sexual assault.

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Direct download: MormonStories-1492-MckayJohnsonPt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:33am MDT

Today we discuss Mormon Temples, the prosperity gospel, and the Mormon church's use of social media influencers to promote its temple work. Feel free to post your comments, experiences, and questions below!

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1491-QuestionsOnAirTemples.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 1:09pm MDT

What questions are on your mind this week? Do you have something you've been wanting to ask? What queries have you, our dear Mormon Stories listeners? Tell us! Join John and Carah for a live stream as we chat, answer your questions, and hit the hot topics of the week in the Mormon/post-Mormon realm.

Show notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1490-QuestionsOnAirWithJohnCarah.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 3:48pm MDT

On September 12 Franklin Richards, a member of the 12 and his travel companions caught up with the Willie handcart company. They held a conference in which they insulted and ridiculed the company for their lack of faith. The GAs then said they wanted fresh meat. They made the company slaughter their "fattest calf" which they did and the GAs took the meat with them.

A member of the 12 literally took provisions from the Willie handcart company.

In the podcast we will give the basic background of the handcart trek, how the Lord's anointed were absolutely trash, and then discuss how the worst failure of Mormon History is celebrated widely every year.

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Direct download: MormonStories-1489-JohnLarsenHandcarts.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 4:25pm MDT

As Chad Daybell and Lori Vallow face indictments and/or allegations for multiple murders (e.g., Chad's wife Tammy, Lori's husband Charles, Lori's brother Alex, Lori's children JJ and Tylee) - many believing LDS church members (i.e. "Mormons") have taken issue with the suggestion that Mormon beliefs played any role in these murders.  

Today we conclude our 2-part series exploring the Mormon influences on Chad Daybell and Lori Vallow.  Our guests for today are Lauren and John Matthias - co-hosts of the Hidden True Crime podcast.  I am also super happy to be joined today by my dear, brilliant friend Mindy Caldwell, who has followed the Daybell/Vallow case very closely over the past few years.  

Please join us with your questions and comments.

Hidden: A True Crime Podcast explores the hidden motives behind unimaginable crimes, while examining our deepest fears along the way. Join us on a journey into the darkest recesses of the human mind and the unconscious motivations that drive human behaviors, both good and bad, in order to understand the world and ourselves. Pull up a chair at our dinner table as the husband and wife team of Dr. John Matthias, a forensic psychologist, and Lauren Matthias, a journalist, delve into the psychological facets of unthinkable crimes. What are you hiding? What are you hiding from? What remains hidden?

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1488-ChadDaybellLoriVallowPt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 6:38pm MDT

As Chad Daybell and Lori Vallow face indictments and/or allegations for multiple murders (e.g., Chad's wife Tammy, Lori's husband Charles, Lori's brother Alex, Lori's children JJ and Tylee) - many believing LDS church members (i.e. "Mormons") have taken issue with the suggestion that Mormon beliefs played any role in these murders.

Today we begin Part 1 in a series exploring the Mormon influences on Chad Daybell and Lori Vallow.  Our guests for today are Lauren and John Matthias - co-hosts of the Hidden True Crime podcast.  I am also super happy to be joined today by my dear, brilliant friend Mindy Caldwell, who has followed the Daybell/Vallow case very closely over the past few years.

Please join us with your questions and comments.

Hidden: A True Crime Podcast explores the hidden motives behind unimaginable crimes, while examining our deepest fears along the way. Join us on a journey into the darkest recesses of the human mind and the unconscious motivations that drive human behaviors, both good and bad, in order to understand the world and ourselves. Pull up a chair at our dinner table as the husband and wife team of Dr. John Matthias, a forensic psychologist, and Lauren Matthias, a journalist, delve into the psychological facets of unthinkable crimes. What are you hiding? What are you hiding from? What remains hidden?

Show Notes:

—————

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

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Direct download: MormonStories-1487-ChadDaybellLoriVallowPt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 6:05pm MDT

Join us for this extra special Mormon Stories Podcast interview with Thomas & Cici Stokes (@big.crick.music on TikTok) as we hear the story of their faith journey, and listen to some of Thomas' original music that helped them heal throughout their faith transition.

Show notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1486-StokesPt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 4:18pm MDT

Join us for this extra special Mormon Stories Podcast interview with Thomas & Cici Stokes (@big.crick.music on TikTok) as we hear the story of their faith journey, and listen to some of Thomas' original music that helped them heal throughout their faith transition.

Show notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1485-ThomasCiciStokesPt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 2:14pm MDT

Parallel to the LDS Church’s shifting position regarding homosexuality, there have been new crops of faithful gay public figures who are held up by the church as role models on how to be a faithful gay member of the church. As the LDS Church has softened its stances and opened the window for “righteous celibacy,” gay public figures in mixed-orientation marriages have lost popularity and a more nuanced breed of celibate role models has emerged E.g. Charlie Bird and Ben Schilatty.

In this episode we discuss how these public figures enable the perpetuation of harmful church rhetoric and spiritual trauma towards the LGBTQ community, and explore some possible solutions that could help ignite positive change in the church.

Show notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1484-TheGayMormonReformation.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 4:50pm MDT

How many of Joseph Smith’s revelations were a success and how many have the church needed to redefine overtime? Today we are honored to have John Larsen in studio for an epic breakdown of Joseph Smith’s revelation for the “Lamanites”, calling Elders to preach to the Native Americans and the subsequent ramifications of Latter-Day Saint teachings for Native American people.

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1483-JohnLarsenLamenites.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 4:43pm MDT

Lauren Rogers is our guest today for this epic two-part Mormon Stories interview. After suffering through a restrictive diet, harassment, and medical neglect on her Mormon mission to Chile, Lauren found herself permanently disabled as she made her way back home to the US.

In part two, Lauren also tells us about the same-sex attraction she repressed throughout her life as a devout Mormon and descendant of Brigham Young, eventually leading to an extremely fascinating exit from the church and a wildly eye-opening description of how she continues a healthy relationship with her husband.

It’s a gripping story from start to finish! Even Lauren’s shelf breaker and realizations about God might be a first-ever for Mormon Stories! We hope you’ll resonate with Lauren’s incredible, epic story!

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Direct download: MormonStories-LaurenRogersPt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 12:30pm MDT

Lauren Rogers is our guest today for this epic two-part Mormon Stories interview. After suffering through a restrictive diet, harassment, and medical neglect on her Mormon mission to Chile, Lauren found herself permanently disabled as she made her way back home to the US.

In part two, Lauren also tells us about the same-sex attraction she repressed throughout her life as a devout Mormon and descendant of Brigham Young, eventually leading to an extremely fascinating exit from the church and a wildly eye-opening description of how she continues a healthy relationship with her husband.

It’s a gripping story from start to finish! Even Lauren’s shelf breaker and realizations about God might be a first-ever for Mormon Stories! We hope you’ll resonate with Lauren’s incredible, epic story!

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Show Notes:

  • Lauren’s Tiktok: https://www.tiktok.com/@exmo_mom_?lang=en
  • Ted Lyon MS episode: https://www.mormonstories.org/podcast/missionary-sexual-assault/
  • Gospel topics essays: https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/manual/gospel-topics-essays/essays?lang=eng
  • Matt Harris Mormon Stories episode: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rmjj2kbxFnQ
  • Eldon Kartchner - https://www.mormonstories.org/podcast/eldon-kartchner-mixed-orientation-marriage/
  • Josh and Lilly Weed: https://www.mormonstories.org/podcast/josh-and-lolly-weed-on-their-love-story-mixed-orientation-marriages-and-ldslgbt-issues/
Direct download: MormonStories-LaurenRogersPt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:00am MDT

We are starting a new series on Mormon Stories Podcast dedicated to reporting on current events. Today Carah and John will be discussing the recent announcement that the Mormon church has agreed to pay out $250 million dollars to help settle all current and future BSA-related sexual abuse claims.

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Direct download: Mormon_Stories-1479-BoyScoutSexualAbuseSettlement.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 4:26pm MDT

In this episode, John and Carah sit down with therapist Natasha Helfer to discuss a few of the negative messages people raised in religious conservative community may have been conditioned to believe about sex.

Show notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1480-NatashaHelferHealingFromShame.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:00am MDT

Join us as we continue with part 2 of our interview with Camille Jones where we discuss her employment with the LDS church, the role of women in the patriarchal church employment system, and what eventually caused her to lose her faith in Mormonism.

A huge ‘thank you’ to Camille for being brave enough to tell us her story! Camille’s journey is a fascinating one to say the least!

Show notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1478-CamilleJonesPart2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 2:45pm MDT

Are Mormon missionaries who lead tours at historic church sites like those across upstate New York told to teach false information about the church’s founding? Mormon Stories producer and co-host Carah Burrell takes the reins for her second episode as lead interviewer of our guest Camille Jones as we talk with her about serving in Palmyra, New York at the LDS church’s visitor center.

In part one of our two-part interview with Camille, we discuss the narrative the church wants to be forwarded about the church’s founding versus what Camille wishes she would have known while volunteering as a full-time missionary. We cover topics from the golden plates, to the Hill Cumorah, and more. Camille also discusses the confusing and uncomfortable advances older Mormon men have made on her throughout her teen years.

This eye-opening experience highlighted the power imbalance between Mormon men and women, a theme that carries on into part 2 where Camille discusses being employed by the church.

Show notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1477-CamilleJonesPart1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 2:40pm MDT

Join Margi, John, and Carah as we discuss different approaches to telling loved ones about your loss of faith. Please share questions, lessons you've learned, and suggestions in the comments below.

This episode is part of our new "Gift of the Mormon Faith Crisis" project on Mormon Stories Podcast, where we will share tips and tricks for navigating, healing, and growth after a Mormon faith crisis.

If you would like to see this sort of content continue, please become a monthly donor to the project.

Show Notes:

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We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

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Direct download: MormonStories-1476-MargiDehlinTellingLovedOnesPt3.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 2:35pm MDT

Join Margi, John, and Carah as we discuss different approaches to telling loved ones about your loss of faith. Please share questions, lessons you've learned, and suggestions in the comments below.

This episode is part of our new "Gift of the Mormon Faith Crisis" project on Mormon Stories Podcast, where we will share tips and tricks for navigating, healing, and growth after a Mormon faith crisis.

If you would like to see this sort of content continue, please become a monthly donor to the project.

Show Notes:

—————

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

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Direct download: MormonStories-1476b-TellingLovedOnesAboutFaithLoss.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 2:30pm MDT

Join Margi, John, and Carah as we discuss different approaches to telling loved ones about your loss of faith. Please share questions, lessons you've learned, and suggestions in the comments below.

This episode is part of our new "Gift of the Mormon Faith Crisis" project on Mormon Stories Podcast, where we will share tips and tricks for navigating, healing, and growth after a Mormon faith crisis.

If you would like to see this sort of content continue, please become a monthly donor to the project.

Show Notes:

—————

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

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Direct download: MormonStories-1476-TellingFamilyAboutLossOfFaith.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 2:20pm MDT

Are you looking for friends and community after leaving Mormonism or organized religion? The THRIVE initiative seeks to do just that - provide events, content, and community for people leaving Mormonism and/or organized religion.

Prior to the COVID outbreak, considerable momentum was made with THRIVE in the organizing of events for post-Mormons, and in the formation of live, face-to-face communities. THRIVE leaders Jeni and Clint Martin are now excited to announce several new exciting THRIVE initiatives which include:

- A revamped website with new functionality.
- A THRIVE events calendar to keep you informed of upcoming events.
- Instructions for how you can organize your own THRIVE events.
- An "in -person community locator" to help you find a local, face-to-face support communities, and
- Instructions for creating your own face-to-face community if one doesn't exist in your area.
We will also discuss future plans for THRIVE.

_________________
THRIVE WEBSITE:
https://www.thrivebeyondreligion.com/

Online groups/resources:
WACA (Women of a Certain Age)
Faith Journey Meetups fb group
Ex Mormon Reddit
Mormon Stories facebook group
Mormon Enlightenment facebook group
Mormon Spectrum

Faith Crisis Resources:
https://www.mormonstories.org/faith-crisis-resources/

Natasha’s events
https://www.symmetrysols.com/events
_________________

Direct download: Thrive2021.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 1:15pm MDT

In our final segment with Laura Schnell, she describes her faith deconstruction, responds to criticisms, and expresses the immense beauty she’s found rediscovering her own voice as a post-Mormon woman.

Show notes and links:

Direct download: MormonStories-1474-LauraSchnellPt3.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:11am MDT

When we left off with Laura Shnell at the end of part one, Laura had decided to pursue a career in the LDS Church Education System as a seminary teacher. In this episode, we hear her describe the inappropriate interactions from her mentor, the great lengths Laura went to for her Spanish speaking seminary students, and the sexism she faced as a woman working for CES.

Show notes and links:

Direct download: MormonStories-1474-LauraSchnellPt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 9:08am MDT

In part one of this exciting three part interview, Colombian immigrant and former Mormon seminary teacher, Laura Schnell, shares her very unique Mormon story. Laura left South America with her mother and sister in the 90s to Queens, New York, and remembers her time in their small Spanish speaking LDS branch with fondness.

In this episode, she discusses her step-dad joining the family, her time in India with BYU’s International Development Program, and the road she took to choosing a career in the Church Educational System and meeting a friend of the podcast, Marc Oslund. 

Show notes and links: 

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Direct download: MormonStories-1472-LauraSchnellPt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 4:15pm MDT

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1472-ListenerUpdateQuestions.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 3:41pm MDT

Have you ever found yourself reacting in unhelpful ways to the distress that accompanies a religious faith crisis (or life in general)?

Margi Dehlin has spent two decades supporting and/or coaching Mormons in faith crisis, post-Mormons, and women experiencing significant life transitions.

As part of a new series on Mormon Stories Podcast providing free coaching support to transitioning and post-Mormons, Margi will share her general approach to managing the emotional distress that often accompanies a religious faith crisis. Her framework will be based on Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, which is a cutting-edge form of mindfulness-based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1471-MargiDehlinStayingGrounded.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 12:08pm MDT

In April of 2019 Brigham Young University valedictorian Matt Easton came out as a faithful gay Mormon during his valedictorian address, which was pre-approved by the LDS Church. Matt's speech received very positive national media attention, including an appearance on the Ellen Show. Matt is currently attending U.C. Berkeley as a Political Science Ph.D. student.

Last week, Mormon apostle Jeffrey R. Holland publicly "called out" Matt Easton, accusing him of "commandeering" the 2019 graduation ceremony. His exact words were:

"If a student commandeers a graduation podium intended to represent everyone getting diplomas in order to announce his personal sexual orientation, what might another speaker feel free to announce the next year until eventually anything goes? What might commencement come to mean — or not mean — if we push individual license over institutional dignity for very long? Do we simply end up with more divisiveness in our culture than we already have? And we already have too much everywhere."

Please join us on August 29, 2021 at 1:30pm Utah time as Matt Easton shares with us his Mormon story, and responds to Elder Holland's irresponsible attacks.

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1470-MattEaston.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:40am MDT

As most Mormons are just now beginning to learn, Joseph Smith left multiple and varied First Vision accounts that changed dramatically over time. Joseph Smith's 1st handwritten First Vision account was produced in 1832, and was intentionally hidden from LDS Church members for over a century and a half - primarily because of the many problems it presented to orthodox belief. The "official" First Vision account that the LDS Church ended up adopting is the 1838 version, which varies in several significant ways from the previous versions - primarily reflecting Joseph Smith's evolving theological beliefs.

Join us today as John Larsen analyzes Joseph Smith's FIRST (1832) handwritten First Vision account, and explores the many difficulties this version presents to modern Mormon faith.

Show notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1469-JohnLarsen1stVisionAccounts.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:26am MDT

Wrapping up our epic three part interview with the Laing family, Heather and Kelly detail the path of love and acceptance they took while deconstructing their faith in the Mormon god’s plan for families. We hope you’ll resonate with their description of uncovering troubling Mormon history, growing closer as a family, and realizing none of them are broken, least of which their two gay sons.

Show notes:

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We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

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Direct download: MormonStories-1468-LiangPt3.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 9:38am MDT

What happens when two sons in a Mormon military family come out as gay? In part two of our interview with the Laing family, we talk with Britton and Mason Laing about the unique struggles they faced, what it was like coming out, and their advice for other gay teens.

Show notes:

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We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

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Salt Lake City, UT 84117

Direct download: MormonStories-1467-LiangPt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 8:45am MDT

Batten down the hatches and prepare for an epic Mormon Stories interview like you’ve never heard before! Part of what is often called “the Silent Service”, former nuclear submarine commander, Kelly Laing and his family, finally speak out. We dive deep in this three part interview and hear from Heather and Kelly Laing, followed by two of their four children, Britton and Mason, in part 2.

In this episode, we discuss Heather and Kelly’s courtship as teens, the road Kelly took into the military, and the ways they kept their family and love life afloat. 

Show notes:

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We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

Click here to donate monthly: $10 $25 $50

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MSP on Spotify

MSP on Apple Podcasts

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Salt Lake City, UT 84117

Direct download: MormonStories-1466-LaingPt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:56am MDT

On August 23, 2021 Mormon apostle Jeffrey R. Holland spoke to staff at Brigham Young University during the first day of the institution's 2021 university conference.  During his speech Elder Holland condemned: 1) a recent BYU valedictorian for "coming out" as gay during his graduation commencement address, 2) a recent uptick in LGBTQ-affirming demonstrations at BYU, and 3) a recent surge in LGBTQ support by BYU students and faculty.  His comments appear to be in response to a corresponding surge in concerns expressed by orthodox ultra conservative/Deznat-affirming LDS church adults who are concerned that BYU is becoming to LGBTQ affirming (descending into "Babylon").  During his speech Elder Holland invoked war metaphors, including the statement, "I am grateful we have scholars today who can handle, as it were, both trowels and muskets.”

Today we will talk with Kyle Ashworth (host of Latter-Gay Stories Podcast) and Gerardo Sumano about the recent events.  The main topic will be: is the LDS Church losing control over LGBTQ support at BYU and church-wide?

Show notes: 

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Direct download: MormonStories-1465-ElderHollandLGBTQSupportatBYU.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 7:00am MDT

Today Mormon Stories is lucky enough to be joined by the wonderful Jessie Funk! For anyone familiar with the music of the youth seminars held by the LDS church known as “EFY”, singer Jessie Funk’s name should ring a bell. After Jessie’s career touring with the broadway musical “Footloose”, releasing several studio albums and books, starting her organization “The Ivy Foundation”, and raising her two children, she recently changed tunes, choosing to leave the Mormon church.

We are excited to speak with Jessie about her Mormon upbringing, career (in and outside of the church), her faith crisis, and her new venture “Especially for Truth”, a week-long summer seminar for post-Mormon teens. Wrapping up her first “EFT” event last week where John and Carah were invited as guest speakers, we hope powerhouse Jessie Funk joining the post-Mormon activist space will be music to your ears!

Show Notes:

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We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

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—————

MSP on Spotify

MSP on Apple Podcasts

MSP Blog

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*PO Box 171085

Salt Lake City, UT 84117

Direct download: MormonStories-1464-JessieFunk.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:58am MDT

In Friday's Mormon Stories Podcast episode, beloved podcaster Radio Free Mormon shares with us his reflections on how he transitioned from a Mormon apologist to a non-believer and critic of the LDS Church.

Please join us with your questions and comments!

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1463-FromTBMtoRFM.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:41am MDT

Geneticist Simon Southerton was serving as an Australian Mormon bishop when he discovered through DNA research that Native Americans were not descendants of Israelites (as the Book of Mormon teaches), but instead were descendants of Asians via the Bering Strait. This researched caused Simon to lose his faith in Mormonism. He is the author of a book on the subject called “Losing a Lost Tribe.”

Recently Simon has been studying the declining growth in the worldwide LDS or Mormon church. Simon will join us on Mormon Stories Podcast to discuss his research into Mormon church decline.

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Direct download: MormonStories-1462-NewTemplesVeilMormonismsDeclineSimonSoutherton.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 2:19pm MDT

Join us today for a conversation with Dr. Robert P. Mildenhall, MD (an ICU pulmonary physician from Nashville, Tennessee) as he answers questions about his experience with Covid-19 and the vaccine.

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Direct download: MormonStories-1461-CovidVaccineICUDoc.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 9:55am MDT

Over the past few days the Intensive Care Units in Utah hospitals and around the U.S. began to overflow with COVID patients. Reports began to emerge that as high as 99% of the ICU patients and deceased were not vaccinated from COVID. In addition, the LDS Church First Presidency released a new announcement a few days ago urging members to be vaccinated. This announcement has caused many vaccine-hesitant LDS church members to question their faith in the LDS church, and/or in LDS Church president Russell M. Nelson. The announcement also has spurned several interesting conspiracy theories. There has also been a variety of responses from local LDS bishops, stake presidents, and members - from supportive to unsupportive.

On August 17th between 9am and 10am mountain time please join us as we assemble a panel of physicians and experts to discuss the status of the COVID vaccine in the U.S., in Utah, and in the LDS Church. The conversation will avoid politics, will be science-based, and we will take questions from the viewing audience.

Please join us, and please spread the word.

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Direct download: MormonStories-1460-MormonChurchAndTheCovidVaccine.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 3:22pm MDT

Is there a double standard at BYU when divvying out punishments to athletes vs students who break the honor code? Mormon Stories producer and co-host Carah Burrell takes the reins on this intense episode as lead interviewer of our guest Kelly Trust as we take a deep dive into answering that question! Finally feeling freed from the constraints that kept her quiet for too long, Kelly describes the confusing, unhealthy sexual messages around her body that plagued her youth, the relationship with a star BYU athlete that led to her expulsion from the school while the player stayed, and the faith crisis that ensued after reading the CES Letter. 

Content warning on this episode for strong sexual themes and profanity. 

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate!

Links and show notes: 

Honor Code Stories Instagram: 

CES Letter: 

“Leaving the Saints” by Marth Beck: 

“Braving the Wilderness”  by Brene Brown: 

Instagram:

Direct download: MormonStories-1459-KellyTrust.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:00am MDT

One of our most popular Mormon Stories guests is back with wonderfully salient advice for post-Mormon growth! Leah, along with her husband Cody and daughter Brinley, told their story to John during an epic multi-part Mormon Stories series on their faith transition and excommunication in 2019. In this episode, Leah shares seven lessons she’s learned while rebuilding a meaningful life for herself and her family. So many good takeaways in this episode! We hope you’ll find it valuable, share it, come back to it more than once during different life stages, and comment on what lessons you’ve learned along your journey as well. 

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate!

Links and show notes:

Mormon Stories #1044: Leah, Cody, and Brinley Young - From Fear Into Joy (Part 1) Pt. 1:

Mormon Stories #1098: The Excommunication of Leah and Cody Young Pt. 1:

Mormon Stories #1048: Leah, Cody, and Brinley Young - A Teen's Perspective on Faith Transition Pt. 1:

Balanced Living with Leah website:

The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma:

“She Let It Go” poem:

Email Leah: balancedlivingwithleah@gmail.com

Active Listening the Kids Perspectives:

Leah’s courses:

Leah’s instagram:

Direct download: MormonStories-1458-LeahYoungLessons-leveled.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 4:12pm MDT

Our guest today is Brinley Young, daughter of Leah and Cody young, a family famous for telling their story to John during an epic multi-part Mormon Stories series on their faith transition and excommunication back in 2019 when Brinley was just 15 years old. Now 18, post-faith crisis, and with wisdom beyond her years, Brinley joins John and Margi in studio for 7 lessons she’s learned after leaving the church on topics ranging from communication, owning her sexuality, and following her intuition. This is a special one you won’t want to miss!

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate!

Links and show notes:

Mormon Stories 1044: Leah, Cody, and Brinley Young - From Fear Into Joy (Part 1) Pt. 1

Mormon Stories 1098: The Excommunication of Leah and Cody Young Pt. 1

Mormon Stories 1048: Leah, Cody, and Brinley Young - A Teen's Perspective on Faith Transition Pt. 1

"Untamed" by Glennon Doyle

Direct download: MormonStories-1457-BrinleyYoung.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 5:49pm MDT

Please join us as three Native American women, Sarah, Ann, and Monika who were raised in the Mormon church, discuss the following:

- What they were taught about the "Lamanite doctrine" as Native American Mormon women.
- How the Mormon Lamanite doctrine impacted their lives, especially while finding a partner.
- How their perspectives have changed regarding the Mormon Lamanite doctrine.

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate!

Links and show notes:

Direct download: MormonStories-1456-Native_American_Mormon_Women_and_the_Lamanite_Myth.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 4:29pm MDT

Join our panel as we discuss the question: Will Mormons Get Their Own Planets? Featuring Jaxon Washburn, Nemo the Mormon, John Dehlin, and Carah Burrell. 

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate!

Links and show notes: 

Nemo the Mormon YouTube channel

Jaxon's TikTok

 

Direct download: MormonStories-1455-Will_Mormons_Get_Their_Own_Planets.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 3:37pm MDT

Trigger warning for our viewers as we bring you a special short episode on this under-covered topic. In a follow-up to our Mormon Stories interview with Kelceymarie, we go further in-depth on the issue of self-harm. How to view it, understand it, and find help. Kelceymarie Warner is a mental health advocate and graduate student getting her second masters in clinical mental health counseling. Kelceymarie has connected with hundreds of thousands through her books, journals, and TikTok by opening up about her struggles with depression, anxiety, self harm, suicidal thoughts, and eating disorders.

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate!

Links and show notes: 

Kelceymarie’s TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@kelceymariewarner?lang=en

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kelceymariewarnertiktok/

Kelceymarie’s Linktree to resources, book, etsy, etc: https://linktr.ee/kelcemariewarner

"The Sparrow’s Box” Site: https://www.thesparrowsbox.com/shop

Direct download: MormonStories-1454-KelceySelfHarm.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 1:56pm MDT

A strong trigger warning leads off this important interview, but we hope you’ll be able to join us as we hear from mental health advocate Kelceymarie Warner. As a graduate student in clinical mental health counseling, Kelceymarie has connected with hundreds of thousands through her books, journals, and TikTok by opening up about her struggles with depression, anxiety, self harm, suicidal thoughts, and eating disorders.

Converting to the church as a teen, Kelceymarie found peace from her dysfunctional home life by attending church. We discuss the pros and cons of Mormonism in her life, the control and abuse that lead to the end of her temple marriage, and advice for those struggling hard to overcome life’s challenges who’ve turned to self-harm as a coping mechanism. This is a special one!

Show notes:

Direct download: MormonStories-1453-KelceymarieWarner.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:43am MDT

Warren Driggs is a part-time attorney and author of several books including “Mormon Boy: A Memoir” and “Swimming in Deep Water, A Novel of Joseph Smith”. In this delightful interview, we sit down with Warren and his wife Cindy as they take us through the different fascinating ways their families raised them in Salt Lake City ranging from orthodox Mormons to casual, but intellectual, members of the church.

Listen along as they share their hilarious stories, impart beautiful insights, and the lessons they learned raising moral children after leaving the religion they loved in the heart of Mormon Mecca.

Show notes:

“Mormon Boy: A Memoir” by Warren Driggs https://www.amazon.com/Mormon-Boy-Memoir-Warren-Driggs/dp/0998779547

“Swimming in Deep Water, A Novel of Joseph Smith” by Warren Driggs https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0779G53GP/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_tkin_p1_i2

“A Tortoise in the Road” by Warren Driggs https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07XPV5MDC/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_tkin_p1_i1

“Old Scratch” by Warren Driggs https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B06Y5YMLF5/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_tkin_p1_i3

“No Man Knows My History” by Fawn Brodie https://www.amazon.com/No-Man-Knows-My-History/dp/0679730540/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=no+man+knows+my+history&qid=1626237620&sr=8-1

Direct download: MormonStories-1452-Warren_and_Cindy_Driggs.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 12:53pm MDT

Today we are excited to sit down with legend, John Larsen. After ending his wildly popular Mormon Expression podcast, having John in studio is an honor as we steep in his humor and knowledge. We hit on some of our favorite important topics like the “curse of Cain'' while also bouncing around in the absurdity of Big Foot.

You will laugh, you might cry, but you will absolutely not be disappointed in this episode!

Content warning: PG-13 rating for profanity

Show notes:

Mormon Expression: How to Build a Transoceanic Vessel

-MP3: http://johnlarsen.org/podcast/Archive/MormonExpression276.mp3

-Text: https://gdoc.pub/doc/e/2PACX-1vRh7CxIlETHNYtH5jk0MXsWc5FVChckAUODY2QDGjLCjDGYWFgzOlGq1JORs4EZsbDzh63DvdShYNU1

"An Enemy Hath Done This" by Ezra Taft Benson: https://www.amazon.com/Enemy-Hath-Done-This/dp/0884941841

"The Church & The Negro - A Discussion of Mormons, Negros and the Priesthood" by John Bezos: https://www.amazon.com/CHURCH-NEGRO-Discussion-Mormons-Priesthood/dp/B000W1N72K

Direct download: MormonStories-1451-DoctrineOfCain.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:17am MDT

Join us today as we continue with part two of our interview with an awesome mother and daughter duo, Linda and Savannah Clyde. Growing up in a mixed-faith Mormon home, Linda worked through the resentment she felt towards her father’s lack of belief in the church with beautiful results. Linda’s talents as a writer eventually landed her a job at LDS church headquarters in the marketing department where she was instrumental in assisting the church soften it’s tone and messaging. Hearing her talk about the inner workings of the church is fascinating stuff to say the least! Once an extremely faithful teenager, Linda’s daughter Savannah’s curious spirit led her to dig deeper into the narrative of the church and become a new kind of pioneer for her Mormon family.

Listen along as they describe their journey to understanding one another, their non-Mormon loved ones, and the beauty that can come from embracing non-conformity as a family in Utah county.

Direct download: MormonStories-1450-ClydePt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 9:47am MDT

Today we’re premiering part one of our epic interview with an awesome mother and daughter duo, Linda and Savannah Clyde. Growing up in a mixed-faith Mormon home, Linda worked through the resentment she felt towards her father’s lack of belief in the church with beautiful results. Linda’s talents as a writer eventually landed her a job at LDS church headquarters in the marketing department where she was instrumental in assisting the church soften it’s tone and messaging. Hearing her talk about the inner workings of the church is fascinating stuff to say the least! Once an extremely faithful teenager, Linda’s daughter Savannah’s curious spirit led her to dig deeper into the narrative of the church and become a new kind of pioneer for her Mormon family.

Listen along as they describe their journey to understanding one another, their non-Mormon loved ones, and the beauty that can come from embracing non-conformity as a family in Utah county.

Direct download: MormonStories-1449-ClydePt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:51am MDT

In September of 2020, professional Mormon apologists Terryl and Fiona Givens were invited to speak at a Mormon church fireside for the Sunderland England Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  During this fireside Terryl Givens was asked to recount an experience he once had with a Mormon missionary woman who was doubting her testimony because of troubling things she learned about Mormon church founder Joseph Smith,  Terryl's recounting of the story was as follows:

"I was fortunate that there was a mission president in our area who knew us and our work.  And there was a sister missionary who decided that she was going to leave the church.  She was finishing her mission the next week and she'd made the decision to go home and leave.  And her companion of course deeply distraught over this and asked the mission president "Could we go talk to brother Givens?"  And he gave them permission to come and stay as long as they needed so they stayed long into the night.  And I listened to one after another question and then finally it occurred to me to ask this one question.  And I said to her in regard to one question in particular about Joseph Smith, and I said "Sister" I said, "Why does the answer to that question matter?"  And it changed everything.  It just caught her up short.  And she thought for a minute and she said, "I don't know" (Terryl chuckles).  "I don't know."

Many (including myself) were disturbed by Terryl Givens' story/response - particularly since it was directed at currently doubting Mormon church members.  We were primarily puzzled, shocked, and somewhat disturbed that the Mormon church's leading professional apologist - who has spent many years writing books for, and speaking/ministering to doubting Mormons - would provide such a glib and seemingly uninformed response.  That said, we understand that belief issues are complex, and take Terryl at his word that he sincerely does not understand why troubling aspects of Mormon history, including newly-discovered details about Joseph Smith's life, would matter to a questioning or doubting Mormon.

Consequently, I am launching a new social media campaign with which I could use your help.  The goal of the campaign is to help educate Terryl, Fiona, other Mormon Church apologists, and the Mormon church leadership about as to why "Informed Consent" is crucial to both active Mormons and Mormon investigators.

Direct download: MormonStories-1448-WhyTruthMatters.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 11:35am MDT

Luna Corbden is the author of "Recovering Agency - Lifting the Veil of Mormon Mind Control." In this multi-part Mormon Stories Podcast series, Lindsey employs the tools of social psychology to identify ways in which the Mormon church uses various coercive techniques often associated with high demand religions (also referred to as cults).

Throughout the series we will be asking, "In what ways does the Mormon church behave in ways similar to other high demand religions (or cults), and what can it do to become less cult-like?" The primary goal of this series is to help people raised within the Mormon Church unpack and separate their own identity from church doctrine and policies. In their book. Luna explores 31 different mind control techniques used by high demand religions generally, and by the Mormon church specifically.. In Part 5, we will cover the final set of methods (of the 31 in total): Indirect Directives, Identification & Example, Induced Phobias, Trace Induction & Dissociative States, Euphoria Induction, and Proselytizing.

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Luna Corbden (who also writes as Luna Lindsey) was born into the LDS Church and left the faith in 2001, at age 26. They now live in Washington state and write about topics of interest to them, including psychology, mind control, culture, and autism. They also write science fiction and fantasy novels, and write short stories for speculative fiction publications like the Journal of Unlikely Entomology, Crossed Genres, and the Recognize Fascism anthology. When they're not busy traveling to improbable worlds, they're thinking hard about this improbable world.

Luna's book can be found here: https://www.amazon.com/Recovering-Agency-Lifting-Mormon-Control/dp/1489595937

Show Notes:

—————

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

Click here to donate monthly: $10 $25 $50

—————

MSP on Spotify

MSP on Apple Podcasts

MSP Blog

Instagram

Patreon

TikTok

Discord

 

Contact Us!

*MormonStories@gmail.com

*PO Box 171085

Salt Lake City, UT 84117

Direct download: MormonStories-1447-RecoveringAgencyPt5.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:17am MDT

Luna Corbden is the author of "Recovering Agency - Lifting the Veil of Mormon Mind Control." In this multi-part Mormon Stories Podcast series, Lindsey employs the tools of social psychology to identify ways in which the Mormon church uses various coercive techniques often associated with high demand religions (also referred to as cults).

Throughout the series we will be asking, "In what ways does the Mormon church behave in ways similar to other high demand religions (or cults), and what can it do to become less cult-like?" The primary goal of this series is to help people raised within the Mormon Church unpack and separate their own identity from church doctrine and policies. In their book. Luna explores 31 different mind control techniques used by high demand religions generally, and by the Mormon church specifically.

In Part 4, we will cover the 4rd set of methods (of the 31 in total): Dispensing of Existence, Social Pressure, Elitism, Us-vs-Them Thinking, Double-Bind, and Confession.

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Luna Corbden (who also writes as Luna Lindsey) was born into the LDS Church and left the faith in 2001, at age 26. They now live in Washington state and write about topics of interest to them, including psychology, mind control, culture, and autism. They also write science fiction and fantasy novels, and write short stories for speculative fiction publications like the Journal of Unlikely Entomology, Crossed Genres, and the Recognize Fascism anthology. When they're not busy traveling to improbable worlds, they're thinking hard about this improbable world.

Luna's book can be found here: https://www.amazon.com/Recovering-Agency.../dp/1489595937

Show Notes:

—————

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

Click here to donate monthly: $10 $25 $50

—————

MSP on Spotify

MSP on Apple Podcasts

MSP Blog

Instagram

Patreon

TikTok

Discord

 

Contact Us!

*MormonStories@gmail.com

*PO Box 171085

Salt Lake City, UT 84117

Direct download: MormonStories-1446-RecoveringAgencyPt4.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:16am MDT

Luna Corbden is the author of "Recovering Agency - Lifting the Veil of Mormon Mind Control." In this multi-part Mormon Stories Podcast series, Lindsey employs the tools of social psychology to identify ways in which the Mormon church uses various coercive techniques often associated with high demand religions (also referred to as cults). Throughout the series we will be asking, "In what ways does the Mormon church behave in ways similar to other high demand religions (or cults), and what can it do to become less cult-like?"

The primary goal of this series is to help people raised within the Mormon Church unpack and separate their own identity from church doctrine and policies. In their book. Luna explores 31 different mind control techniques used by high demand religions generally, and by the Mormon church specifically.

In Part 3, we will cover the 3rd set of methods (of the 31 in total): Mystical Manipulation, Milieu Control, Loading the Language, Totalist Reframing, Thought-Terminating Cliches, and Time Control.

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Luna Corbden (who also writes as Luna Lindsey) was born into the LDS Church and left the faith in 2001, at age 26. They now live in Washington state and write about topics of interest to them, including psychology, mind control, culture, and autism. They also write science fiction and fantasy novels, and write short stories for speculative fiction publications like the Journal of Unlikely Entomology, Crossed Genres, and the Recognize Fascism anthology. When they're not busy traveling to improbable worlds, they're thinking hard about this improbable world.

Luna's book can be found here: https://www.amazon.com/Recovering-Agency-Lifting-Mormon-Control/dp/1489595937

Show Notes:

—————

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

Click here to donate monthly: $10 $25 $50

—————

MSP on Spotify

MSP on Apple Podcasts

MSP Blog

Instagram

Patreon

TikTok

Discord

 

Contact Us!

*MormonStories@gmail.com

*PO Box 171085

Salt Lake City, UT 84117

Direct download: MormonStories-1445-RecoveringAgencyPt3.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:16am MDT

Luna Lindsey Corbden is the author of "Recovering Agency - Lifting the Veil of Mormon Mind Control." In this multi-part Mormon Stories Podcast series, Lindsey employs the tools of social psychology to identify ways in which the Mormon church uses various coercive techniques often associated with high demand religions (also referred to as cults). Throughout the series we will be asking, "In what ways does the Mormon church behave in ways similar to other high demand religions (or cults), and what can it do to become less cult-like?"

The primary goal of this series is to help people raised within the Mormon Church unpack and separate their own identity from church doctrine and policies. In their book. Luna explores 31 different mind control techniques used by high demand religions generally, and by the Mormon church specifically.

In Part 2, we will cover the 2nd set of methods (of the 31 in total): Love Bombing, Destabilization, Deception, Belief Follows Behavior, Public Commitment, Creating Dependency, and Emotion Over Intellect.

--------

Luna Corbden (who also writes as Luna Lindsey) was born into the LDS Church and left the faith in 2001, at age 26. They now live in Washington state and write about topics of interest to them, including psychology, mind control, culture, and autism. They also write science fiction and fantasy novels, and write short stories for speculative fiction publications like the Journal of Unlikely Entomology, Crossed Genres, and the Recognize Fascism anthology. When they're not busy traveling to improbable worlds, they're thinking hard about this improbable world.

Luna's book can be found here.

Show Notes:

—————

We are 100% donor funded! Please click HERE to donate and keep this content coming!

Click here to donate monthly: $10 $25 $50

—————

MSP on Spotify

MSP on Apple Podcasts

MSP Blog

Instagram

Patreon

TikTok

Discord

 

Contact Us!

*MormonStories@gmail.com

*PO Box 171085

Salt Lake City, UT 84117

Direct download: MormonStories-1444-RecoveringAgencyPt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:00am MDT

Recovering Agency - Examining Mormon Mind Control Pt. 1 (with Luna Lindsey Corbden) Luna Lindsey Corbden is the author of "Recovering Agency - Lifting the Veil of Mormon Mind Control." In this multi-part Mormon Stories Podcast series, Lindsey employs the tools of social psychology to identify ways in which the Mormon church uses various coercive techniques often associated with high demand religions (also referred to as cults). Throughout the series we will be asking, "In what ways does the Mormon church behave in ways similar to other high demand religions (or cults), and what can it do to become less cult-like?"

The primary goal of this series is to help people raised within the Mormon Church unpack and separate their own identity from church doctrine and policies. In their book. Luna explores 31 different mind control techniques used by high demand religions generally, and by the Mormon church specifically.

In Part 1, we explore the basics of how cognitive dissonance works, and we will cover the first six methods (of the 31 in total): Sacred Sciene, Demand for Purity, Doctrine Over Self, Black & White Thinking, Blame Reversal, and Guilt & Shame.

And, if you have not already, tune in to my most recent livestream (episode number 1442) for an introduction to this fascinating series!

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Luna Corbden (who also writes as Luna Lindsey) was born into the LDS Church and left the faith in 2001, at age 26. They now live in Washington state and write about topics of interest to them, including psychology, mind control, culture, and autism. They also write science fiction and fantasy novels, and write short stories for speculative fiction publications like the Journal of Unlikely Entomology, Crossed Genres, and the Recognize Fascism anthology. When they're not busy traveling to improbable worlds, they're thinking hard about this improbable world.

Luna's book can be found here: https://recoveringagency.com

Show Notes:

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Direct download: MormonStories-1443-RecoveringAgencyPt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:05am MDT

 
In cooperation with author Luna Lindsey Corbden (Recovering Agency) and Youtuber Jonathan Streeter (Thoughts on Things and Stuff), I have developed a short self assessment to help people:
  1. Determine if they were raised in a cult or high-demand religion, and/or
  2. Learn to more quickly identify the techniques used by unhealthy people and organizations to wield undue influence over family, friends, employees, or members.
This self assessment should take no longer than 30 minutes to complete.  A PDF of the assessment can be found here.
 
We also highly encourage you to learn and study these principles to avoid being taken advantage of by unhealthy individuals and organization (including family members, businesses, corporations, governments, etc) .
 
Finally, if you enjoyed this episode, please check out our in-depth, 17+ hour exploration of the book "Recovering Agency: Lifting the Veil of Mormon Mind Control" with author Luna Lindsey Corbden on Mormon Stories Podcast. These episodes will be released starting Monday, June 28th.
Direct download: MormonStories-1442-WasIRaisedInACult.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 3:47pm MDT

This week we celebrate the birthday of faithful Mormon historian and scholar Richard Bushman – author of Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling, and former Mormon church stake president and patriarch.

Some of you will remember that I had the privilege of interviewing Richard back in 2007. Most of you probably don’t know that Richard agreed to discuss 10 topics on the series, but quit the interview after only addressing 3 of the 10 topics, which was very disappointing to me at the time. But of course that was his prerogative.

Since our original interview, Richard has declined to appear on Mormon Stories Podcast again – especially after my excommunication from the Mormon Church in 2015. Still, there are many questions that I would like to ask Richard (or any believing Mormon scholar), if he (they) would allow it. Unfortunately most faithful Mormon scholars avoid any forums where they are asked candid, difficult questions. This is not their fault, of course. It’s the price of doing business with a church that silences and punishes its truth-tellers.

Consequently, I am recording a personal episode where I go ahead and ask the questions I’ve been wanting to ask Richard, along with expressing a few concerns with some of Richard’s public statements over the years.

I hope you enjoy! If you enjoy this episode, I may do something similar a few other faithful scholars/historians/apologists.

Direct download: MormonStories-1441-QuestionsForRichardBushman.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 4:08pm MDT

Join us for Part 2 of our interview with Gerardo who is a dear friend of the podcast! Growing up in an orthodox Mormon home, his story gives a unique perspective on the church in Mexico and the “Laminate ancestry” that plays into the testimony of many of the members in Latin America. After realizing his attraction to men in his youth, Gerardo worked to keep up with expectations as the son of a prominent LDS family hoping God would “turn his weakness into strengths.”

Through stories about Evergreen, conversion therapy, Mexican EFY, and serving a faithful mission, we hear how strongly Gerardo tried to pursue the covenant path and deny his gay identity. Gerardo went to BYU-I where he met his husband, a wild story filled with intense highs and lows. Eventually questioning his faith, losing his connection to being a descendant of the Laminates and working through disagreements with LDS family, Gerardo put his whole heart out there in this interview. Listen along for some life-changing insights from Gerardo on this epic episode of a Mexican Mormon Story!

Direct download: MormonStories-1440-GerardoPt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 1:32pm MDT

Join us for Part 1 of our interview with Gerardo who is a dear friend of the podcast! Growing up in an orthodox Mormon home, his story gives a unique perspective on the church in Mexico and the “Lamanite ancestry” that plays into the testimony of many of the members in Latin America. After realizing his attraction to men in his youth, Gerardo worked to keep up with expectations as the son of a prominent LDS family hoping God would “turn his weakness into strengths.”

Through stories about Evergreen, conversion therapy, Mexican EFY, and serving a faithful mission, we hear how strongly Gerardo tried to pursue the covenant path and deny his gay identity. Gerardo went to BYU-I where he met his husband, a wild story filled with intense highs and lows. Eventually questioning his faith, losing his connection to being a descendant of the Lamanites and working through disagreements with LDS family, Gerardo put his whole heart out there in this interview. Listen along for some life-changing insights from Gerardo on this epic episode of a Mexican Mormon Story!

Direct download: MormonStories-1439-GerardoPt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 9:57am MDT

Kelly and Kayla Mikesell are a dynamic step-mother/daughter pair. Only recently did Kelly start to investigate the troubling issues with Mormon history that had been eating away at her children. In an effort to learn, love, and empathize with her children, she investigated the church and grew in ways that surprised her and her family.

As Kelly chose love and understanding over dogma and compliance, she was able to open her heart to the members of her family in the LGBTQ community, including her step-daughter Kayla. Teenage years filled with the unimaginable amounts of shame and guilt, Kayla was able to grow into her own independent, confident adult, even winning Miss Salt Lake City and making her platform one of advocacy for the Utah Pride Center.

We are honored to interview two thoughtful, articulate women putting a lot on the line to speak out while Kelly’s husband still currently serves as her bishop!

Warning: This episode contains discussions of self-harm.

Show Notes:

Direct download: MormonStories-1438-KellyKaylaMikesell.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 9:45am MDT

Happy Utah Pride Week everyone! To celebrate Utah Pride week, I am sharing one of the most important interviews in the history of Mormon Stories Podcast. It is the story of Kyle Ashworth - a dear, brilliant, talented friend, and the host of Latter Gay Stories podcast.

This interview is important for at least 3 reasons:

  1. Kyle is a truly brilliant, caring human. That should be enough.
  2. It conveys super powerfully the myriad of ways in which the Mormon Church harms its LGBTQ members AND its straight members - including a deep dive into the serious problems of mixed-orientation marriages within Mormonism, along with the deep ineffectiveness and deceptiveness of organizations like North Star International.
  3. Finally, It is ultimately a story of "love winning out" as Kyle, his ex-wife, and her family fulfill their mantra, "One Family, Two homes."

Join us today to hear the conclusion of Kyle's truly inspiring story.

Please watch and enjoy, and please spread the word!!!

Direct download: MormonStories-1437-KyleAshworthpt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:11am MDT

Happy Utah Pride Week everyone! To celebrate Utah Pride week, I am sharing one of the most important interviews in the history of Mormon Stories Podcast. It is the story of Kyle Ashworth – a dear, brilliant, talented friend, and the host of Latter Gay Stories podcast.

This interview is important for at least 3 reasons:

  1. Kyle is a truly brilliant, caring human. That should be enough.
  2. It conveys super powerfully the myriad of ways in which the Mormon Church harms its LGBTQ members AND its straight members – including a deep dive into the serious problems of mixed-orientation marriages within Mormonism, along with the deep ineffectiveness and deceptiveness of organizations like North Star International.
  3. Finally, It is ultimately a story of “love winning out” as Kyle, his ex-wife, and her family fulfill their mantra, “One Family, Two homes.”

Today we will show Part 1 of the interview, and tomorrow we will share Part 2.

Please watch and enjoy, and please spread the word!!!

Direct download: MormonStories-1436-KyleAshworthPt1.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:12am MDT

Every year I try to provide donors and listeners with a "State of the Union" address for the Open Stories Foundation (the 501c3 non-profit that I lead which houses Mormon Stories Podcast), along with the overall success of Mormon Stories Podcast and the other OSF podcasts (Gift of the Mormon Faith Crisis Podcast, A Thoughtful Faith Podcast, and Mormon Mental Health Podcast).

The topics for today will be:

  • OSF / Mormon Stories Podcast Mission & What we are about
  • Fiduciary stuff, governance
  • Board status
  • Effectiveness/reach of Mormon Stories Podcast
  • OSF Finances
  • OSF Strategy for 2021 and beyond
  • OSF staff changes, including the addition of Carah Burrell to the staff for a trial period
  • Plan for events and community
  • OSF challenges/needs
Direct download: MormonStories-1435-OSF2021StateoftheUnion.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 9:56am MDT

After converting to Mormonism as a teen and attending BYU, Haleigh Evert’s relationship with the Mormon church grew unfulfilling and complicated. After leaving the church for a time, Haleigh came back to the Mormon church, married in the temple, and started making videos and writing about her Mormon journey.

Haleigh eventually published the book “Why I Left the Mormon Church and Came Back,” which is still sold at Deseret Book today. Then, after years of promoting and defending the Mormon church, Haleigh read the CES Letter for the first time (just a month and a half ago).

In this episode we discuss Haleigh's conversion, her reach on social media as a Mormon influencer, and her life now after reading the CES letter.

Show Notes:

Direct download: MormonStories-1434-HaleighEverts.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 9:34am MDT

Today I am so excited to share my interview with the incredible Lexi McDonald - YouTube's ExMo Lex! Tune in as we discuss Lexi's personal Mormon story, her faith transition away from the LDS church, and the birth of her highly successful Social Media platform, ExMo Lex.

Find Lexi on Social Media:

Direct download: MormonStories-1433-ExMoLex.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 10:03am MDT

Today I am honored to share the story of Drew Manning - author, TV star, and founder of the viral brand, "Fit2Fat2Fit." Join us as we continue with Part 2 of Drew's Mormon story, which will cover:

  • Healing after a divorce
  • Discovering meditation
  • Finding new wisdom outside of the church
  • Spirituality through psychedelics
  • Fit2Fat2Fit and the identity crisis that followed
  • Drew’s beliefs around God and an afterlife as a post Mormon

Show Notes:

Direct download: MormonStories-1432-DrewManningpt2.mp3
Category:Religion -- posted at: 12:01pm MDT