527–528: (Encore) A Christmas Primer: Exploring the Nativity in Scripture, Legend, History, and Hearts

Dan Wotherspoon Christianity, God, Jesus Christ, Mythology, Scripture, Spirituality 1 Comment

This is an encore presentation of a December 2011 two-part Mormon Matters podcast episode examining the Christmas story as it traditionally gets told—looking closely at …

525: “Table Manners”: In What Manner Ought We Engage with Others this Holiday Season?

Dan Wotherspoon Communication, Community, Forgiveness, Spirituality 2 Comments

This episode, “Table Manners” is a short reflection by Mormon Matters host Dan Wotherspoon about ways we might interact with others during this season of …

521–524: The Enneagram for Mormons

Dan Wotherspoon Communication, Community, Disaffection, Faith Development, God, Mormon Culture, Mormon Life, Spirituality 4 Comments

The Enneagram is a powerful tool for coming to know ourselves and others. Emerging in the mid-twentieth century and refined during the ensuing years, interest …

519–520: (Encore) The Living Nature of Mormon Covenants

Dan Wotherspoon Baptism, Covenants, God, Marriage, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Ordinances, Temple 2 Comments

This is an encore presentation of an important and still very relevant two-part episode first released on 24 April 2017. Covenanting is a huge feature …

516–517: Becoming Powerful: Dr. LaShawn Williams on Her Faith Journey and Path to Spiritual Confidence

Dan Wotherspoon Abuse, Activism, Communication, Faith, Faith Development, God, Holy Ghost, Jesus Christ, Mormon Culture, Spirituality, Testimony, Women, Worthiness 1 Comment

TW: Brief mentions of sexual assault in this conversation Dr. LaShawn Williams (EdD., LCSW, MPA) is on the faculty at Utah Valley University, where she …

514 –515: Thoughts on the October 2018 General Conference

Dan Wotherspoon Church Leadership, Doctrine, General Conference, God, Grief and Suffering, Joseph Smith, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Mormon Culture, Prophets, Women 5 Comments

The October 2018 General Conference has just ended, but certainly not the discussion of it! Not for many, many months in our wards, stakes, and …

512–513: Wrestling with the Obedience vs Conscience Dilemma

Dan Wotherspoon Church Leadership, General Conference, Holy Ghost, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Prophets 4 Comments

We’ve all heard statements such as, “Obedience is the first law of heaven.” We’ve also been charged to seek our own light and revelation on …

510 – 511: Upcoming General Conference–Rumors, Hopes, Worries, and Preparing Ourselves for Whatever Unfolds

Dan Wotherspoon Church Leadership, General Conference, Prophets, Revelations, Spirituality 3 Comments

In just over a week after the release of this podcast episode, millions of Latter-day Saints from around the world will gather in person or …

508–509: The LDS Church’s New Official History Volume, Saints: The Standard of Truth

Dan Wotherspoon History, Joseph Smith, Marriage, Polygamy, Relief Society, Teaching 9 Comments

Just two weeks ago, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released the first volume of its long-awaited history of the church series, Saints: …

506 –507: What Do Latter-day Saints Consider Authoritative?: Wrestling with Scripture, Prophetic Utterance, Personal Conscience, and an Expanding and Changing Canon

Dan Wotherspoon Doctrine, General Conference, Mormon Culture, Mormon Life, Prophets, Revelations, Scripture, Social Media, Women 2 Comments

At this moment, with the 2018 October General Conference just weeks away, many Latter-day Saints are—consciously and unconsciously—going through in their minds and hearts how …

505: The Heart and Depth of Father Tom Roberts: How the Things He Sees, Studies, and Shares Might Prove a Great Boon for Many Latter-day Saints

Dan Wotherspoon Christianity, Doctrine, God, History, Jesus Christ, Marriage, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Scripture, Theology 2 Comments

No one who has appeared on Mormon Matters has a more interesting, diverse, and ecumenical religious journey than Father Tom Roberts—one that also includes Mormonism from …

503–504: Reflecting on Major Themes in 500-plus Mormon Matters Episodes

Dan Wotherspoon Community, Faith, Faith Development, God, Mentors, Mormon Culture, Mythology, Religion, Scripture, Spirituality, Truth 1 Comment

Earlier this month, Mormon Matters released its 500th episode. In this two-part podcast, host Dan Wotherspoon speaks about the show’s evolution, but mostly he re-introduces …

502: The New Push to Use the Church’s Official Name: An “Impression” Becomes an “Official Statement”— But What about “Implementation”?

Dan Wotherspoon Church Leadership, Mormon Culture, Revelations 6 Comments

On 16 August 2018, the Newsroom website for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released an official statement that set off a significant …

501: Centering in God: Experiences and Insights from the Living School for Action and Contemplation

Dan Wotherspoon Activism, Christianity, Community, Faith Development, God, Grief and Suffering, Jesus Christ, Prayer 4 Comments

This episode features reflections on a wonderful experience the two panelists and I shared this past week in Albuquerque, NM. All three of us—Jana Spangler, …

499: Faith Journeying with Matt Jones — Rambunctious Youth to LDS Bishop and Wise Soul

Dan Wotherspoon Christianity, Community, Faith Development, God, Spirituality 8 Comments

Just two weeks ago, Matt Jones was released as an LDS bishop. How he came to be someone who might be called to that position …

498: Mormon Difference Makers

Dan Wotherspoon Activism, Community, Homosexuality, LGBTQ, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Mormon Culture, Sexuality Leave a Comment

This episode arrives on the heels of the release of a marvelous short video, “Do Better, which features LGBT+ Latter-day Saints and allies sharing reflections …

496-497: (Encore) Mormonism As a “Religion”

Dan Wotherspoon Community, Mythology, Spirituality 1 Comment

This is an encore presentation of a two-part Mormon Matters episode first recorded in March 2015.  Of course, we all know that Mormonism is a …

494–495: “What Do We Do with All This?”: Sunstone and Today’s Uncorrelated Mormon Discussions

Dan Wotherspoon Community, Intellectuals, Mormon Culture, Mormon Life, Personal Essays, Sunstone Leave a Comment

Most Mormon Matters listeners are, as consumers of LDS-related websites, blogs, podcasts, Reddits, Facebook groups, and other social media platforms, enmeshed in the world of …

492–493: Women’s Ordination and Congregational Leadership: Exploring New Research

Dan Wotherspoon Christianity, Church Leadership, Community, Mentors, Priesthood, Women 2 Comments

On July 2nd, a terrific new book was released by Oxford University Press: She Preached the Word: Women’s Ordination in Modern America. Co-authored by Benjamin R. …

491: Mormonism and Depression, Suicide, and Medication: A Larger Context

Dan Wotherspoon Addiction, Depression, LGBTQ 10 Comments

In recent years, Mormonism has been doing much better when talking about depression and mental health struggles, helping destigmatize them and encouraging its members to …

488–490: Resurrecting Atonement

Dan Wotherspoon Atonement, Christianity, Faith, Faith Development, God, Jesus Christ, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Spirituality, Theology 22 Comments

The concept of “atonement” is powerful: being “at one” with God, others, and ourselves. But the panelists on this episode, Mark Crego and George Andrew …

487: Exclusivism

Dan Wotherspoon Confidence, Faith, Faith Development, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Mythology, Spirituality, Testimony, Truth 4 Comments

This episode wrestles with exclusivist claims in religion, including Mormonism, as well as in our psyches. How does the idea of chosenness, specialness, uniqueness, and …

485–486: An Open-Hearted Wrestle with Temples, Tithing, and Other Church and Personal Priorities

Dan Wotherspoon 4 Comments

Every time a new temple is announced, especially when it is to be built in the developing world, it’s not very long before discussions begin …

484: Robert Kirby: Mormonism’s Lampoonist Extraordinaire

Dan Wotherspoon Community, Faith Development, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Mormon Culture, Mormon Life Leave a Comment

Were there an official calling within Mormonism of “Church and Culture Lampoonist” (and there should be!), Robert Kirby would be magnifying the heck out of …

483: The Prayer Wheel: “An Early Christian Handheld Device”

Dan Wotherspoon Christianity, Faith, Faith Development, God, Jesus Christ, Scripture 3 Comments

At Mormon Matters we will occasionally focus on the importance of sticking with (though often with changed forms) spiritual practices even while in the midst …

479–480: (Encore) Mormon Views on Satan and the Origins of Evil

Dan Wotherspoon Doctrine, God, Grief and Suffering, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Scripture Leave a Comment

Most religions, cultures, and philosophies contain stories or theories about human evil and its origins. Some, including Mormonism, place a major portion of the blame …

477–478: Improving the Way Mormons Discuss Anger

Dan Wotherspoon Communication, Depression, Faith Development, Grief and Suffering, Mormon Culture, Spirituality, Women 2 Comments

This episode begins with a description of occasions in which one of our guests expresses feelings of anger over something only to be told one …

476: A Healer’s Healing Journey: An Interview with Dr. Julie de Azevedo Hanks

Dan Wotherspoon Confidence, Faith, Faith Development, Grief and Suffering, Marriage, Mentors, Mormon Culture, Mormon Life, Spirituality, Women 2 Comments

Dr. Julie de Azevedo Hanks has over the past decade-plus become a leading voice in mental health, marriage and family, women’s issues, and faith journey …

475: “Revelation” and “The Will of the Lord”: Changing Rhetoric and Its Effects in Today’s Mormonism

Dan Wotherspoon Church Leadership, Communication, Doctrine, General Conference, Mormon Culture, Prophets, Revelations 2 Comments

The April 2018 General Conference confirmed a trend that some have noticed in recent years that, as they speak about various policies, practices, and teachings, …

473–474: First Reactions to the April 2018 General Conference and Its Big Announcements

Dan Wotherspoon Church Leadership, General Conference, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Mormon Life, Priesthood, Prophets, Relief Society, Teaching 9 Comments

The April 2018 General Conference just closed. It was a monumental one, with many interesting features and announcements. From the Solemn Assembly that it led …

471–472: Reflections on the Recently Revealed MTC Sexual Abuse Cases

Dan Wotherspoon Abuse, Atonement, Christianity, Church Leadership, Communication, Community, Depression, Disaffection, Faith Development, Jesus Christ, Mormon Culture, Sexuality, Women, Worthiness 7 Comments

Within the past ten days, Mormonism has been rocked by a recoding and transcript released through MormonLeaks that depicts the confessions of a former president …

469: Human Development and Parenting

Dan Wotherspoon Communication, Marriage, Retreat, Science, Spirituality, Teaching Leave a Comment

Understanding human development—its tremendous scope, typical progressions, and reasons for its slowdowns or ways various forms of harm can hinder our growth—­­has many benefits. Because …

467–468: The Work of Peace in Mormonism and the Religious World: An Interview with Charles Randall Paul

Dan Wotherspoon Apologetics, Christianity, Communication, Confidence, Doctrine, Faith, God, Grief and Suffering, Jesus Christ, Joseph Smith, Mentors, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Mormon Culture, Mormon Life, Revelations, Spirituality, Theology, Truth 1 Comment

Many long-time Mormon Matters listeners will recognize the name Charles Randall Paul, (or, as host Dan Wotherspoon calls him 90 percent of the time, “Randy” Paul). He …

465 –466: Deeper Readings of Misunderstood and Under-Appreciated Scriptures

Dan Wotherspoon Christianity, Doctrine, Faith, Jesus Christ, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Mormon Culture, Revelations, Scripture, Theology 2 Comments

Very few of us give deep consideration to the nature of scripture and how it should be read and understood. We grow up (or come …

464: Protecting Ourselves and Loved Ones in Ecclesiastical Situations

Dan Wotherspoon Abuse, Activism, Church Leadership, Communication, Community, Sexuality, Worthiness 1 Comment

Issues surrounding sexual, physical, and emotional harassment and abuse, or of persons not feeling safe in certain institutional environments, have received fresh attention in the …

462–463: Lessons From the Historical Jesus

Dan Wotherspoon Christianity, Faith, God, Grief and Suffering, Jesus Christ, Marriage, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Women 2 Comments

James and Judith McConkie have taken a deep dive into something relatively few Mormon scholars and teachers have researched: the historical Jesus. Latter-day Saints have …

449–461: (Encore Releases) The Old Testament—Teaching and Study Resources

Dan Wotherspoon Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Prophets, Scripture, Teaching Leave a Comment

Links to the remaining episodes below _________ These episodes are encore releases of seven different Mormon Matters podcast shows from the last time the LDS …

448: Shadow Practice

Dan Wotherspoon Christianity, Church Leadership, Communication, Disaffection, Forgiveness, Mormon Life, Spirituality Leave a Comment

This episode is a supplement to the previous two-parter on “sustaining” within Mormonism—which concentrated especially on times when we find ourselves in some sort of …

446–447: What Does it Mean to “Sustain” Our Leaders and Fellow Church Members?

Dan Wotherspoon Church Leadership, Community, Confidence, Covenants, General Conference, Mormon Culture, Mormon Life, Prophets 1 Comment

One of Mormonism’s most attractive features is the wonderful chance all members are given to both formally and informally “sustain” each other as we play …

444–445: A New LDS First Presidency

Dan Wotherspoon Church Leadership, Communication, General Conference, Mormon Culture, Mormon Life, Prophets Leave a Comment

On 14 January 2018, twelve days after the passing of Thomas S. Monson, the long-serving prophet-president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, …

443: Seeking a Good Death: Spiritual Practice and Framings to Help Us Prepare Now for Our Eventual Deaths

Dan Wotherspoon Faith, Grief and Suffering, Mormon & Gospel Teachings, Scripture, Spirituality, Theology Leave a Comment

In this follow-up episode to our early December shows titled “Mormons Encountering Death”(MM 430–432), former hospice chaplain and meditation and contemplation teacher Phil McLemore joins …

441–442: Living in (and Growing through) Tension: An Interview with Bill Reel

Dan Wotherspoon Community, Faith, Mormon Life, Spirituality, Theology 1 Comment

Bill Reel is widely known within the Mormon podcast world as a fellow traveler on the road many of us have found ourselves on—often quite …

436–437: New Temple Baptisms Announcements

Dan Wotherspoon Baptism, Covenants, Priesthood, Sexuality, Temple, Women 2 Comments

On 14 December 2017, a new directive from the First Presidency was released outlining changes to certain things related to youth performing baptisms for the …

433–435: Revelation

Dan Wotherspoon Doctrine, Holy Ghost, Prophets, Revelations, Scripture 3 Comments

Mormonism hangs its hat, so to speak, on the reality of revelation. It claims that God the Father and Jesus Christ visited a teenage boy …

430–432: Mormons Encountering Death

Dan Wotherspoon Spirituality Leave a Comment

“People tend to die the way they’ve lived.” So say two of the guests from different segments of this podcast. Both Dr. Samuel Brown, a …

428–429: Restoring a Lost Jesus and Beautiful Vision of God’s Work and Glory

Dan Wotherspoon Jesus Christ Leave a Comment

Fiona Givens‘ and Terryl Givens‘ most recent book, The Christ Who Heals: How God Restored the Truth That Saves Us, is remarkable. But it’s not because very …

427: (Encore) “Living” Stories

Dan Wotherspoon Mythology, Theology Leave a Comment

This is an encore presentation of a fantastic May 2014 episode by the same name. In it, philosopher-theologian Adam Miller and narrative studies specialist Stephen Carter join Mormon Matters …

424-426: Celebrating the Different Spiritualities in the Two Halves of Life

Dan Wotherspoon Faith, Spirituality 1 Comment

The four people on this three-part podcast episode love Richard Rohr’s book, Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life. If you find …

421–423: Examining Mormon Apologetics, Neo-Apologetics, and Informational Obligations to Church Members and Investigators

Dan Wotherspoon Apologetics 1 Comment

In this, the second installment in a series of co-hosted and co-released shows related to Mormon Apologetics, Mormon Matters and Mormon Stories hosts Dan Wotherspoon …

418–419: Exploring the Messages in and Responses to Elder Dallin H. Oaks’s Recent General Conference Talk

Dan Wotherspoon General Conference 21 Comments

During the recent October 2017 General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Council of Twelve …

416–417: Assessing the History and Value of Mormon Apologetics

Dan Wotherspoon Apologetics, History 2 Comments

Doing “apologetics,” which means to “speak in defense,” has been a longstanding tradition within Christianity, including Mormonism. Some forms of apologetics are often labeled “negative,” …

415: “That We May Be One”: A Gay Mormon’s Perspective on Faith and Family

Dan Wotherspoon LGBTQ 4 Comments

In his new book, That We May Be One: A Gay Mormon’s Perspective on Faith and Family (Published by Deseret Book), Tom Christofferson shares his story …

414: (Encore) Engaging Constructively with General Conference

Dan Wotherspoon General Conference Leave a Comment

The October 2017 General Conference season is upon us. Having started last weekend with the Women’s session, it continues September 30th and October 1st with four general …

413: The New Plan for Relief Society and Adult Priesthood Meetings

Dan Wotherspoon Priesthood, Relief Society 2 Comments

On 25 August, the Church announced a new plan for Relief Society and Priesthood meetings to begin January 2018. Instead of focusing two weeks each …

410–411: (Encore) Theologies of Nature: Mormon Resources for Thinking about Natural Disasters

Dan Wotherspoon Natural Disaster Leave a Comment

This is an encore presentation of a podcast conversation we had in April 2011 on the heels of the then-recent Japanese earthquakes and tsunamis. With …

407-409: The Wilderness of Faith

Dan Wotherspoon Faith 3 Comments

This three-part episode features Kim Puzey and Lisa Scott, two brilliant and insightful people who are deeply familiar with both wilderness living and faith journeying. Drawing on their backgrounds as …

403–406: Revelations of Joseph Smith and Others: A Naturalistic Hypothesis

Dan Wotherspoon Revelations 6 Comments

In her very important new book, Revelatory Events: Three Case Studies of the Emergence of New Spiritual Paths, historian and religion scholar Ann Taves offers a naturalistic framing for …

401–402: The Uncontrolling Love of God—Talking Theology and Community, and Meeting a Fellow Traveler in Thomas Jay Oord

Dan Wotherspoon Community, Theology 6 Comments

This two-part episode features a wonderful conversation with Thomas Jay Oord, an author, teacher, theologian, and elder in the Church of the Nazarene. Jim McLachlan …

400: “Yep, We’re Fringe . . . and So Are You!”— Rejecting Toxic “Acceptability” Scripts Sunstone Style!

Dan Wotherspoon Sunstone Leave a Comment

The 2017 Salt Lake Sunstone Symposium convenes in two weeks (July 26–29), and this episode introduces some of its highlights. But far more than just …

398–399: Staying Actively Engaged in Mormonism

Dan Wotherspoon Faith 1 Comment

This two-part episode is a co-release with the Mormon Stories Podcast. It is a discussion that took place on 29 June 2017 in front of …

396–397: Spiritual Journeys Outside of Mormonism

Dan Wotherspoon Faith 9 Comments

This episode features two wonderful teachers, pastors, scholars, and clergy from non-Mormon faith traditions sharing their own spiritual journeys and the ways that God has …

393–394: Does “Certainty” Hinder Living Faith?

Dan Wotherspoon Faith Leave a Comment

Living faith is a growing faith. It is faith in a living God. It is trust in a trustworthy being (or beings). It is striving …

390–392: Mormon Women Gaining Spiritual Confidence within a Patriarchal Church

Dan Wotherspoon Women 8 Comments

The title of this three-part episode says quite a bit about it. Several weeks ago, Mormon Matters released a conversation, “Gaining Spiritual Confidence,” featuring three men sharing …

388–389: Our Brains and Faith

Dan Wotherspoon Faith, Science 1 Comment

Our faith lives, including how we orient toward the world, God/Spirit (or whatever we consider the highest center(s) of value and power), and ourselves, are …

387: LDS Church Changes to Its Scouting Program

Dan Wotherspoon Scouting 8 Comments

On May 11, 2017, the LDS Church announced it is dropping Varsity and Venturer Scouts as the primary program for its U.S. and Canadian young …

386: Announcing a July 2017 Mormon Matters Retreat!

Dan Wotherspoon Retreat Leave a Comment

A MORMON MATTERS RETREAT! “Understanding and Navigating Healthy Perspectives and Journeys within Mormonism” Led by Dan Wotherspoon, Ph.D. Natasha Helfer Parker, LCMFT, CST, Marty Erickson, …

384–385: Gaining Spiritual Confidence

Dan Wotherspoon Confidence 12 Comments

All religions point adherents toward gaining knowledge and insights for themselves through their own spiritual dives. Religious cultures, however, often (overtly but more often subtly) …

382–383: The Living Nature of Mormon Covenants

Dan Wotherspoon Covenants 6 Comments

Covenanting is a huge feature of Mormon theology and group life. Beginning at age eight with baptism, and extending through the temple endowment and sealing …

379–380: Effective Teaching in the Church

Dan Wotherspoon Teaching, Top 10 5 Comments

Mormonism provides numerous opportunities for us to teach each other. But, as we know, many times our Sunday classes fall short of being wonderful, too …

378: Engaging Constructively with General Conference

Dan Wotherspoon General Conference 3 Comments

The April 2017 General Conference season is upon us. Having started last weekend on March 25th with the Women’s session, it continues April 1st and …

372: Jesus’ Abba: The God Who Has Not Failed

Dan Wotherspoon Jesus Christ, Theology 2 Comments

John B. Cobb is one of the world’s most renowned theologians and philosophers, noted especially for his Christological pluralism and work across many disciplines, and …

371: New Perspectives on Joseph Smith and Translation

Dan Wotherspoon Joseph Smith 5 Comments

As Richard Bushman mentions in this podcast episode, one of the very first things Joseph Smith did in announcing himself to the world was to …

369–370: Helping Children Plant Lasting Seeds of Faith

Dan Wotherspoon Faith 9 Comments

Every person is different, and this is completely true with children, as well. Often we as parents will assume our children are picking up ideas, …

367–368: Faith within a Mormonism that Points Beyond Itself

Dan Wotherspoon Faith 4 Comments

We all sort of “know” but still very often forget that God and religious and spiritual truths are couched in symbols, language, propositions, metaphors, stories, …

366: Sin

Dan Wotherspoon Christianity 7 Comments

Because it’s so central to Christianity, and because of the concerns so many have about “salvation,” the concept of “sin” deserves fresh consideration. What does …

365: More on the Mormon God (with help from Process Theology)

Dan Wotherspoon Theology 32 Comments

In somewhat of a continuation of our previous episodes (363 & 364), Jim McLachlan and Mormon Matters host Dan Wotherspoon are joined by David Ray Griffin, a world-renowned philosopher and theologian …

363–364: Mormonism’s Wonderful, Vulnerable God

Dan Wotherspoon God 20 Comments

For many who find themselves in the middle of a faith crisis, casting about for new footing and ways of orienting to life and others, …

362: Taking Jesus Seriously

Dan Wotherspoon Christianity, Jesus Christ 30 Comments

Meet in this podcast two wonderful, active Latter-day Saints who are “alive in Christ,” Jesus focused, and modeling in their wards and circles a robust faith in …

361: Joy Amidst Sadness: Kim Puzey’s Journey to Peace

Dan Wotherspoon Depression 7 Comments

This episode continues a conversation with one of the panelists from the previous installment, Kim B Puzey. Picking up where we left off in his life …

360: Faith and Doubt: Balancing Truth, Goodness, and Beauty

Dan Wotherspoon Faith 15 Comments

Doubting our long-held views of the world, especially if firm faith positions are part of it, is a high stakes matter. Not only do enter …

358–359: Improving Our Conversations about Important and Emotional Topics

Dan Wotherspoon 6 Comments

How many times have we inadvertently offended a person or group of persons because we simply aren’t thinking about how the things we say might …

356–357: (Encore) A Christmas Primer: Exploring the Nativity in Scripture, Legend, History, and Hearts

Dan Wotherspoon Christianity 1 Comment

This is an encore presentation of a December 2011 podcast episode examining the Christmas story as it traditionally gets told—looking closely at what the scriptures …

355: Personal and Spiritual Renewal Following a Difficult Election Season

Dan Wotherspoon Spirituality 18 Comments

Many people are feeling beat-up emotionally and spiritually right now on the heels of such a difficult and ugly election season. Regardless of whether “our” preferred candidate …

353–354: Championing the “Addiction” Paradigm with Regard to Pornography/Sex Addiction

Dan Wotherspoon Pornography

This two-part episode is a response to a panel of therapists and a neuroscientist who in an earlier episode (347–348) challenge the idea that pornography …

351-352: “The Policy”—One Year Later

Dan Wotherspoon LGBTQ 8 Comments

On Thursday afternoon, November 5th, 2015, a leak of new directives regarding LGBT Latter-day Saints was made public, kicking off a tumultuous year within many Mormon …

Announcing a New Survey about LDS LGBT Policies

Dan Wotherspoon LGBTQ 1 Comment

Let your views be heard about current LDS policies and teachings about LGBT persons and issues! Two social psychologists, Michael Nielsen and David Wulff, have …

350: The LDS Church’s New Mormon and Gay Website

Dan Wotherspoon LGBTQ 20 Comments

On October 25, 2016, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released a new website, “Mormon and Gay” (www.mormonandgay.lds.org) an update of its previous site …

349: The Leaked Videos: A Church That Is Also a Corporation

Dan Wotherspoon General Conference 8 Comments

On October 2nd 2016, the final day of the LDS Church’s October General Conference, a dozen or so videos were leaked online that show the briefings of various …

347-348: Challenging the “Addiction” Paradigm with Regard to Pornography

Dan Wotherspoon Addiction, Pornography 35 Comments

The past two weeks featured two opposing Op-Eds in the Salt Lake Tribune (here and here) focusing on the issue of pornography, and especially if an “addiction” …

346: Intimacy in Mormon Marriages

Dan Wotherspoon Marriage 25 Comments

Mormon theology, including temple covenants, along with pulpit and lesson rhetoric and cultural and community discourse place a strong emphasis on the family. It also …

345: Dialogue at Fifty!–Part 2: Present and Future

Dan Wotherspoon Communication 1 Comment

We are excited to continue our celebration of the 50thanniversary of Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought through a conversation with its current editor, Boyd …

344: Dialogue at Fifty!—Part 1: History

Dan Wotherspoon Communication 2 Comments

Something wonderful with long-lasting effect on Mormonism began in 1966 with the publication of the inaugural issue of Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought. Beginning …

343: An Exciting Approach to Scripture

Dan Wotherspoon Scripture 1 Comment

A new book edited by Julie M. Smith, As Iron Sharpens Iron: Listening to the Various Voices of Scripture, does  something wonderful. It takes something we …

342: Mormon Women’s Position and Organization Names and Titles

Dan Wotherspoon Women 5 Comments

The Summer 2016 edition of the online journal SquareTwo features the results and a discussion of a recent poll of Mormon women about the ways …

341: Teachings about War in the Book of Mormon

Dan Wotherspoon Scripture 5 Comments

As the LDS Sunday School Gospel Doctrine curriculum turns in coming weeks to the later chapters of the book of Alma and the stories they …

339-340: Mercy and the Atonement

Dan Wotherspoon Atonement 3 Comments

This episode (in two parts) is a continuation of an earlier discussion of Mercy (Episode 332, March 2016) but also very different, focusing this time …

338: Mormons and Humor

Dan Wotherspoon Mormon Life 6 Comments

Are Mormons funny? Do we Mormons have a good sense of humor—in general, or, more importantly, when it focuses on ourselves? In introducing Mormonism to those …

337: The Next Mormons

Dan Wotherspoon Spirituality 10 Comments

Standout Mormon author, scholar, and commentator Jana Riess is working on her next book, which will focus on Mormonism’s “Millennial” generation (those now between ages …

336: The Ghost of Eternal Polygamy

Dan Wotherspoon Polygamy 36 Comments

In this episode, author Carol Lynn Pearson joins Mormon Matters host, Dan Wotherspoon, for a one-on-one conversation about her new and extremely powerful book, The …

335: Hope

Dan Wotherspoon Faith 8 Comments

In commenting about Hope, Patrick Mason writes: “The three great Christian virtues are faith, hope, and charity. The first and the third receive significant attention, …

334: Growing and Living a Fully Engaged Mormon Life

Dan Wotherspoon Mormon Life 13 Comments

Once someone has begun to explore ideas and have experiences that are not outlined explicitly within the typical Mormon curriculum, it is often very difficult …

333: Mormonism and Future Generations

Dan Wotherspoon Atonement, Theology 3 Comments

In a wonderful new book, Future Mormon: Essays in Mormon Theology, Adam Miller sets his spirit and intellect loose on the important task of helping clear …

332: Mercy

Dan Wotherspoon Forgiveness, Jesus Christ Leave a Comment

Mercy is a fundamental tenet of the Christian gospel and its descriptions of the attributes of God, and it certainly is a topic familiar to …

331: Reflections on Two Recent Talks and the Online Reactions They Generated

Dan Wotherspoon General Conference Leave a Comment

Excerpts from two talks by prominent General Authorities (one by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, and the other by Elder Richard J. Maynes) have in the …

330: Mormonism’s Jesus

Dan Wotherspoon Jesus Christ 2 Comments

John G. Turner’s recent book, The Mormon Jesus: A Biography (Harvard University Press, 2016) presents a wonderful overview of the various ways Mormon scripture, leaders, …

329: Addiction and Recovery Series—Part 4: Being an Addict and Mormon

Dan Wotherspoon Addiction 1 Comment

This episode, the fourth in the Mormon Matters series on Addiction and Recovery, features the stories and insights of two wonderful people, James Cottrell and …

327–328: Explorations in Depth—The Two Lost Sons and Growing in God

Dan Wotherspoon Spirituality, Top 10 26 Comments

This episode departs from the typical Mormon Matters pattern in that it features a conversation with just one guest rather than a panel. But what …

326: Addiction and Recovery Series—Part 3: One Family’s Story of Overcoming Pornography Addiction and Its Negative Effects

Dan Wotherspoon Pornography 13 Comments

This episode, the third in our Mormon Matters Addiction and Recovery series, features another hopeful story, though it takes us through some very dark times …

325: Addiction and Recovery Series—Part 2: Effects on an Addict’s Family

Dan Wotherspoon Addiction 2 Comments

This episode contains a hopeful story, though one difficult to hear in all of its details. Ultimately the marriage of Christian and Kelle Smith has …

323–324: New/Old Wisdom from Mormonism and Other Traditions for Facing the End of the World

Dan Wotherspoon Apocalypticism 4 Comments

Charles Shiro Inouye has just written a fantastic book, The End of the World, Plan B: A Guide for the Future (Greg Kofford Books, 2016). …

322: How Does Apocalyptic Thinking Factor into the Recent LGBT Policy Change and Reactions to It?

Dan Wotherspoon Apocalypticism, LGBTQ 8 Comments

In the three months since the Church announced its new policy regarding LGBT persons and their children, we seem to increasingly encounter talk among LDS …

320–321: Addiction and Recovery—Part 1: Personal, Family, and Spiritual Dynamics

Dan Wotherspoon Addiction 5 Comments

In this two-part episode, the first in a Mormon Matters podcast series on the many dynamics of addiction and the processes of recovery, often including …

319: Is There Good News for Faith in Today’s Mormon Crises?—Part 2

Dan Wotherspoon Faith 8 Comments

This episode is the second part of a co-released (with Gina Colvin and A Thoughtful Faith podcast) podcast discussion with Patrick Mason and Boyd Petersen …

318: Are There Fresh and Productive Ways to View the New LGBT Policy/Revelation?

Dan Wotherspoon LGBTQ 18 Comments

For many of us, the discovery and confirmation in early November 2015 of a new Church policy regarding LGBT couples and their children have led …

317: Is There Good News for Faith in Today’s Mormon Crises?—Part 1

Dan Wotherspoon Faith 4 Comments

In his recent book, Planted: Belief and Belonging in an Age of Doubt, Patrick Q. Mason offers an optimistic vision for the future of Mormonism, …

316: Reflections on the New Mormon Gender Survey

Dan Wotherspoon Women 1 Comment

A long-awaited survey of LDS attitudes toward gender relationships and women’s ordination has begun to yield intriguing snapshots of just where we are within Mormonism …

314–315: Sex-positivity in Mormonism

Dan Wotherspoon Sexuality 6 Comments

Mormonism, like most religions, has many teachings about sex and intimacy. But, like everything else, teachings interact with persons, each with her or his own …

312–313: The Positive Spiritual Effects of Disenchantment and Demythologizing

Dan Wotherspoon Mythology 1 Comment

Throughout our life cycle, we are all called to reexamine the truths, values, beliefs, and stories that suggest key purposes for living and give meaning …

310–311: Making Sense of the Research on Homosexuality—Parts 3 & 4: Social and Psychological Factors

Dan Wotherspoon LGBTQ 15 Comments

With the renewed conversation in Mormonism about homosexuality initiated by the November 6th policy changes, it has become clear that many Latter-day Saints have never …

308–309: Making Sense of the Research on Homosexuality—Parts 1 & 2: Biological Factors

Dan Wotherspoon LGBTQ, Top 10 17 Comments

With the renewed conversation in Mormonism about homosexuality initiated by the November 6th policy changes, it has become clear that many Latter-day Saints have never …

307: Church Handbook Change Regarding LGBT Men and Women and their Children. Part 3—“Yes, and . . .” Activism and Renewal in a Tragic World

Dan Wotherspoon LGBTQ 5 Comments

We all recognize that there is a significant distance between the “real” world we live in and the “ideal” one we’d love to see instantiated. …

306: Church Handbook Change Regarding LGBT Men and Women and their Children. Part 2—Why? Why Now? Analyses and Possibilities

Dan Wotherspoon LGBTQ 6 Comments

In this second episode examining the new policies regarding LGBT women and men and children, Brad Kramer, Nancy Ross, and Rob Vox join Mormon Matters …

305: Church Handbook Change Regarding LGBT Men and Women and their Children. Part 1—Thoughts on How to Move Forward with Faith and Hope

Dan Wotherspoon LGBTQ 26 Comments

On Thursday, November 5th, we learned of several new additions to the Church Handbook of Instructions, Volume 1, which guides members of stake presidencies and …

304: Mormon History and Lying

Dan Wotherspoon History 9 Comments

On October 21st, Brian Whitney wrote a post for the “Worlds Without End” blog in which he offers a contextual framing of LDS Church history …

Matters of Perspective 4: “What the Church Means to People Like Me”

Dan Wotherspoon Classic Mormon Writings 3 Comments

This classic sermon by former BYU history professor Richard D. Poll, read here for Matters of Perspective by Curt Bench, introduces themetaphors of “Iron Rod” …

Matters of Perspective 3: “Why the Church Is As True As the Gospel”

Dan Wotherspoon Classic Mormon Writings 3 Comments

This essay by Eugene England, read here for Matters of Perspective by his son, Mark England, articulates better than any other writing a strongcase for …

303: Why Is This All So Hard?

Dan Wotherspoon Faith 3 Comments

Faith journeys are insanely difficult. Why? In this episode, Lindsay Hansen Park, Jon Grimes, Brian Whitney, and Emily Grover join Mormon Matters host Dan Wotherspoon …

301–302: Doubt and Faith as Discussed in the October 2015 General Conference

Dan Wotherspoon General Conference 15 Comments

Four talks in the October 2015 General Conference focused, at least to a significant degree, on the issues of doubt and faith, and also chose …

299–300: Being Wrong (in a Church and Culture that Emphasizes Being Right)

Dan Wotherspoon Testimony 4 Comments

In this two-part episode, Brian Dillman, Julienna Viegas-Haws, and Anna Smith join Mormon Matters host Dan Wotherspoon in a discussion about “being wrong!” Or make …

297–298: The State of Public History in Today’s Mormonism

Dan Wotherspoon History 2 Comments

In this two-part episode, Lindsay Hansen Park, Brian Whitney, and Jon Grimes join Mormon Matters host Dan Wotherspoon for a discussion of how Mormon history …

295–296: John Dehlin Interviewed by Dan Wotherspoon about His Beliefs, Spiritual Path, and Upcoming Projects

Dan Wotherspoon Spirituality 24 Comments

Co-released with Mormon Stories podcast, this two-part episode features Dan Wotherspoon interviewing Mormon Stories host John Dehlin about his life within Mormonism and role as …

293–294: Dan Wotherspoon Interview by John Dehlin about Helping People Find Rich Spirituality within Mormonism

Dan Wotherspoon Spirituality 17 Comments

Co-released with Mormon Stories podcast, this two-part episode features John Dehlin interviewing Mormon Matters host Dan Wotherspoon about his life within Mormonism and role as a …

292: The Landscape of Mormon Theology: Terryl Givens at the Rockwell Museum

Dan Wotherspoon Theology 5 Comments

On 7 March 2015, Terryl Givens gave a wonderful lecture and was interviewed at the Rockwell Museum in Corning, New York. The occasion was a …

290–291: Past, Present, and Possible Futures of Mormon Studies

Dan Wotherspoon Theology 4 Comments

The academic study of religion has been around for a long time. And although there are many examples of books and articles that have used …