“We want people to understand the history of this church,” says Elder Marcus Nash, a leader of the LDS church who worked on a series of essays about questions of faith and contested church issues. But while this generation of Mormons may be “craving a more complicated narrative” about the church’s past, as Mormon historian Paul Reeve has said, former Mormon Edward Hoefer thinks “some people will accept the essays…and be comforted,” while for others “it will just accelerate their process” of leaving the church behind. More
The primary goal of the annual Hill Cumorah Pageant in Palmyra, New York “is to reach out to people who might be curious about what makes Mormons tick…It’s really a non-threatening way to get some connection to this religion,” says Brent Hanson, artistic director of the pageant. More
“If you’re training gay scouts to be, presumably, gay leaders, but then you don’t want gay leaders in the scouts, that’s an odd message to send,” says United Methodist pastor Charles Parker, a former scout. But opponents of the proposal to accept gay scouts say it flies in the face of a basic scouting tenet: the oath boys take to be “morally straight.” More
Managing editor Kim Lawton reports from Tampa on the involvement of faith leaders at the Republican National Convention; their concerns, especially about Mormonism; the issues they are stressing; and the extent to which they are rallying their members in support of the Romney-Ryan ticket.