This has been an exciting week! Loads of fascinating discussion on religion!
Three of our regular readers have told the stories of how leaving Mormonism meant being true to themselves: Kullervo has always been a Pagan, Jonathan’s inner infidel overcame his Mormon side, and Mormon Andrew had an atheist hiding inside. In a similar vein, ChristFollower discusses how he relates to the Biblical themes in the Book of Mormon, and finds the contrast with the modern LDS church (micro-organizing our personal behavior) a little jarring. And Sabayon took a visit to Unitaria, and it sounded like loads of fun! Here’s my favorite part:
At the end of the service they, and I am not making this up, gave us all a packet of heirloom organic beet seeds to use in our home gardens, not as on overburdened object lesson about faith unto a tiny seed or how great effort yields sweet rewards or something, but because beets grow well in this climate and in containers and make a lovely salad. It is, I believe, the first time I have ever received something in church that was not part of an object lesson or a reward for pestering acquaintances about the church or something. It was also the healthiest thing I ever received in a church. I mean considering what a strict “health code” Mormons are supposed to have in the Word of Wisdom there sure are a lot of Reese’s peanut butter cups in Relief Society. I really like beets too.
On the topic of Missions, Runtu has a guest post by Ryan Reeder explaining the context and effects of missionary murders in Bolivia. And Simian had a good Mission Priesdent, even if the mission experience as a whole left something to be desired.
In the department of interesting-to-note, Aaron Shafovaloff did a little investigative reporting and discovered that reports of the church treating The Miracle of Forgiveness as no more than “one man’s opinion” were a little exaggerated. Oh, and have you ever read the Biblical story of Jephthah? No? Well, Non-Stamp Collector has produced an animated version to help you learn this tale and its interesting moral lesson.
Now, on to events. Mr. FOB hosted a reading party (with videos of the readings!) to celebrate the release of The Fob Bible! Holly Noelle and Adam attended an Exmo Mini-conference, and promise to post a recap soon! Christopher Smith has been posting his review of the SMTP conference, with his reviews of the following presentations: Tyler Stoehr: Do Mormons Really Believe That?, Martin and Eric on Heavenly Mother, Jason Monson on the Possibility of a Mormon Pluralism, and Philip Clayton on the Possibility of a Mormon Process Theology.
Lastly, the news about what’s up here at Main Street Plaza:
As you may (or may not) know, this blog was originally launched as the blog arm of the Further Light and Knowledge community. The thing is, though, that some people seem to like blogging better and some people like forums better (as I talked about in my friend, the Internet), so over the years FLAK and MSP have developed overlapping-but-not-entirely-identical followings. The FLAK folks (especially Solistics and Nom De Cypher) have been kind enough to host and support MSP for free all this time, but we’ve mutually decided that it would be simpler for all involved if we have an MSP regular do the hosting and tech admin. So that task has been transferred to ProfXM.
This does not dissolve our partnership with FLAK in any way. MSP readers are encouraged to go read and post on FLAK, and FLAKkers are encouraged to read and post here. Actually, we could use some more writers who are willing to write posts for us regularly here, and I’ve seen plenty of fascinating discussions on FLAK that could tie in with articles here. If you’re interested in writing for MSP, please email me: chanson dot exmormon at gmail dot com.
That’s it for this week — Happy Sunday!