Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Pathos: The Future of Mormonism

This month, Pathos featured "The Future of Mormonism" as part of its Future of Religion series.

One of the world's fastest growing religious traditions, Mormonism faces the new century with the confidence born of success and the reservations that come from the difficulties of expansion. How will the Mormon Church continue to grow while maintaining its central authority and its emphasis on strong communities? These questions and more will be addressed in Patheos' Future of Religion series.

Philip Barlow
Mormons and the Bible in the 21st Century

by Philip Barlow (Utah State University)
The role of the Bible, and its translations, along with the study of the Mormon canon are shifting the Mormon community in new ways.

Elder Quentin L. Cook
Partnering with Our Friends from Other Faiths

by Elder Quentin L. Cook (Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
The future of Mormonism in the public sphere will, in part, be a shared one as we work with other like-minded faiths to follow the gospel of Jesus Christ in reaching out to our fellow citizens.

Tresa Edmunds
The Next Generation of Mormon Feminism

by Tresa Edmunds (Blogger, Feminist Mormon Housewives)
Despite a lingering environment of fear, many Mormon feminists feel that we are at the brink of a Mormon feminist renaissance.

Steve Evans
The Future of Mormons on the Internet

by Steve Evans (Social media consultant, blogger)
Both the Church and its members are moving toward a time of bonding with each other and sharing experiences in ways never thought possible.

Kristine Haglund
Mormon Publishing, the Internet, and the Democratization of Information

by Kristine Haglund (Blogger, editor of Dialogue)
What is needed is to teach both insiders and outsiders a new vocabulary and new means of evaluating the authenticity and sincerity of sources of information about Mormonism.

Brian Hales
The Future of "Mormon Fundamentalism"

by Brian Hales (Author and anesthesiologist)
Mormon fundamentalists will face new pressures and, perhaps, new opportunities. With the general liberalization of American values, some observers believe that polygamy could become legal within the next decade.

Grant Hardy
The Book of Mormon in Religious Studies

by Grant Hardy (University of North Carolina at Asheville)
The Book of Mormon has already attained the status of world scripture. Whether it becomes accessible to non-Mormons hinges on pursuing new approaches to this challenging text.

Bridget Jack Jeffries
Mormon-Evangelical Dialogue: Changing for the Better

by Bridget Jack Jeffries (Blogger on Mormon-Evangelical Dialogue)
I feel pretty confident that mutual dialogue trends are bound to continue. However, there are three things I would like to see change in the conversation.

Richard T. Livingston
Mormon Studies: Catching the New Wave

by Richard T. Livingston (PhD Student, Claremont Graduate University)
Mormon studies will become more adept at situating their topics within some larger horizon, and will thus paint more subtle, nuanced, complex portraits.

Armand L. Mauss
Mormonism in the New Century

by Armand L. Mauss (Professor Emeritus, Washington State University)
The success of the Church between now and the middle of this new century will depend in large part on whether and how adaptation takes place, as well as upon the ability of the Church to enhance its public image.

Neylan McBaine
The Future of Mormon Motherhood

by Neylan McBaine (Author, founder of The Mormon Women Project)
Each prayerful and self-possessed Mormon mother will come to the conclusion that there might not be a right answer for our people overall, but there is a right answer for her.

Blake T. Ostler
The Challenges of (Non-existent?) Mormon Theology

by Blake T. Ostler (Author, lawyer)
Among the central problems of Mormon thought that need greater attention are the nature and tasks of Mormon theology and the challenge of developing Mormon perspectives on scientific naturalism and human consciousness.

Michael Otterson
The Church's Reputation: Progress, Challenges, and Opportunity

by Michael Otterson (Managing director of Public Affairs, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
Those of us who interact daily with the news media and other opinion leaders sense a fundamental and long-term shift in public fascination with Mormons.

Seth Perry
A World Religion (Eventually)

by Seth Perry (PhD Candidate, University of Chicago)
At their deepest levels, Mormonism's texts and messages are ripe for the adaptations and permutations constitutive of a true world religion.

Boyd Petersen
Mormon Democrats at a Crossroads

by Boyd Petersen (Utah Valley University)
I see more and more Mormons recognizing the progressive agenda of the Democratic party as more engaged in negotiation and working toward solutions of global issues.

Aaron Reeves
Europe and Mormon Growth

by Aaron Reeves (Blogger, lecturer)
The future of Mormonism in Europe seems neither exciting nor hopeful. Though religious tolerance may increase while social stigma decreases, I suspect that growth will be slow, if at all.

Jana Riess
Mormon Publishing: Four Trends to Watch

by Jana Riess (Author, acquisitions editor for Westminster John Knox Press)
There's good news and bad news. The word on the street these days in publishing is that information wants to be free. One thing is certain: there will be an upsurge of the number of overall titles about the Mormon experience.

David G. Stewart, Jr.
The Future of Mormon Missionary Work

by David G. Stewart, Jr. (Author, orthopedic surgeon)
The missionary work of the LDS Church faces serious challenges. Achieving strong continued growth will require multiple paradigm shifts. Some of these shifts are already underway.

Stephen C. Taysom
Mormonism in the Academy

by Stephen C. Taysom (Cleveland State University)
It is abundantly clear that Mormonism is an area of expanding research and teaching interest for serious scholars.

Margaret Blair Young and Darius Aidan Gray
The Colorful LDS Future: The Future of those of African Descent in the Mormon Church

by Margaret Blair Young and Darius Aidan Gray (Authors, speakers, filmmakers)
We have seen the strength of so many Saints of color and know that their future, and ours, is being made better than our mutual past.

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