Some used to consider it “apostate” to say that Joseph Smith married women who were already married to other men. Now the LDS Church has acknowledged it openly.
Author Archives: Jana Riess
About Jana Riess
Since 2008, Jana Riess has been an acquisitions editor in the publishing industry, primarily acquiring in the areas of religion, history, popular culture, ethics, and biblical studies. From 1999 to 2008, she was the Religion Book Review Editor for Publishers Weekly, and continues to write freelance articles and reviews for PW as well as other publications.
She holds degrees in religion from Wellesley College and Princeton Theological Seminary, and a Ph.D. in American religious history from Columbia University. She speaks often to media about issues pertaining to religion in America, and has been interviewed by the Associated Press, Time, Newsweek, People, the Boston Globe, USA Today, the Los Angeles Times, and Newsday, among other print publications, as well as “Voice of America,” the "Today" show, MSNBC, and NPR’s “All Things Considered,” “Tell Me More,” and “Talk of the Nation.”
She is the author, co-author, or editor of books including The Twible: All the Chapters of the Bible in 140 Characters or Less . . . Now with 68% More Humor!; Flunking Sainthood: A Year of Breaking the Sabbath, Forgetting to Pray, and Still Loving My Neighbor; What Would Buffy Do? The Vampire Slayer as a Spiritual Guide; Mormonism for Dummies; and The Writer’s Market Guide to Getting Published. She blogged for Beliefnet before coming to RNS in 2012.
Desiree Miller describes the “culturally rule-breaking pants” her younger sister wanted to wear to church growing up. As an adult, Miller ventured forth to church in her own transgressive trousers on Wear Pants to Church Day, wondering what kind of reception she would receive.
I can understand why it seems strange to non-Mormons that our holy garment is underwear, but to me that is exactly the most beautiful thing about it. What article of clothing could we choose that would be more profane, at the end of the day? What could be more tied to the messiness of being human?
When Mormons say we “know the Church is true,” what do we mean? Does it merely *contain* truth, or is it the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth?
“Inactive people like me don’t need cookies and a half-hearted note,” says guest blogger Alexandra Michelle Rucinski. “We don’t need letters telling us the light is missing from our lives. We need you Mormons to do the thing you sang about in Primary. We need you to try to be like Jesus.”
“Seattle is mirroring what we’ve done in [the] San Francisco Bay Area: throwing the doors open for anyone who wants to join with us on Sunday,” says Mitch Mayne. “That means LGBT individuals are welcome to come to church regardless of where they are in their personal lives — single and living under the confines of the policy as we understand it today, married to a partner of their same gender, or dating someone new every night.”
These YouTube videos show us a Mormonism that’s fun, spontaneous, and caring — a religion that’s out in the streets, helping the world reunite its many lost baby ducks.
What are your doubts about Mormonism, and how comfortable are you with the idea that you may not receive an answer? This week in our book club, we tackle the introduction and first two chapters of “The Crucible of Doubt.”
Despite Brother Facer’s objections to the stake’s buying a pig farm, “the train for hog heaven was leaving with or without him.” Read Eric Facer’s winning entry about his dad in the New Mormon Voices blog contest.