And thank God. After the flurry of news and opinion pieces during this past month of excommunication controversies, it comes as something of a relief that when my Google Alert arrived yesterday its top hit was about the resurgence of the Mormon cricket. (Fifteen crickets per square yard in parts of Idaho. Watch your backs, people.)
So let me take advantage of this relative lull to highlight five great ways to get your Mormon-specific news fixes.
- Sign up for a Google Alert. This is often how I learn about breaking news stories. It was from Mother Google that I learned about missionaries now getting to use iPad minis to text their girlfriends and boyfriends perform important proselytizing services via social media.
- Get the Mormon News Report, stat. OK, this thing is the coolest—and even more extensive than a Google Alert. How Brandt Malone of the Cultural Hall has the time to compile this report every day I have no idea, because I believe he is just one person who has not yet figured out self-cloning. He combs media stories from around the world and links to them all. There are usually more than a dozen stories every day, and they are carefully curated. (To wit: no crickets.) It’s become an invaluable resource for me.
- Follow the Salt Lake Tribune’s Peggy Fletcher Stack. The Trib recently (and unfortunately) downsized its print coverage of religion, but the online stories continue, and Stack is without peer as a journalist covering Mormonism. She usually writes two or three stories a week on Mormonism, and they are all worth a read. (I do not, however, suggest reading the comments, which are categorically awful.)
- Get the LDS Living morning email. Yes, the ads are irritating: “Medical grade eczema products for the whole family!” And yes, the slant is often more toward feature stories than hard news, unless you think the “top qualities that David Archuleta is looking for in a wife” qualifies as hard news. However, this is helpful one-stop shopping for the Church’s official take on things, since LDS Living (part of the Deseret media empire) links to stories from the Deseret News, the Mormon Newsroom, and its own print magazine.
- And finally, don’t forget Religion News Service. Although my RNS blog is personal opinion about the news, RNS also offers opinion-free news stories about Mormonism and other religions. You can get the free daily Religion News Roundup by signing up here.