Saturday, February 24, 2007

Online Parallel Bible

Here is a rather remarkable tool for biblical study - The Online Parallel Bible.

It has a nice online comparison of nine translations of the Bible, plus Hebrew, a Hebrew lexicon, multiple modern languages, concordance, dictionary multiple commentaries and more. These tools can be focused on a single verse or chapter and viewed through two panes in a split window format. Each pane can easily switched between the categories mentioned above.

This is a very creative tools bringing together multiple resources into a usable tool.

Radical Mormon Feminist Manifesto

Last week the blog Exponent II published a working document called the Radical Mormon Feminist Manifesto ( ) After some discussion, the author call for working towards the following goals:

1) Call couples to serve in bishoprics together. Allow women to interview and hear the confessions of other women.
2) Jettison boy scouts and create the same youth programs for girls and boys.
3) Drop the "preside" language about marriage. Focus on co-equal partnerships.
4) Make priesthood ordinations optional and/or given as a young person desires it--sort of like a patriarchal blessing. Allow both girls and boys the same opportunities for ordination.
5) Let women learn their husbands' new names at the temple veil.
6) Allow same-sex couples to be sealed in the temple, even when local laws don't allow legal marriage.
7) Let women plan and speak at their own RS Conferences w/no men involved.
8) Allow women to preside over official meetings, such as sacrament meeting
9) Turn the focus from bishops making the callings to self-callings - let both men and women volunteer and seek out roles they are interested in (even if men want to be in primary or women want to be in leadership)
Now, apparently, "LDS Women Blogs" has removed "Exponent II" from their list of blogs for LDS women for violating their primary rule to "not be critical of Church leaders" ( ,

19th century Mormon feminism was strong and a vital part of the church. However this changed in the 20th century. Feminism in the church has taken on a negative connotation, particularly as the church reacted against the feminist movement and against the Equal Rights Amendment in the 70s. However it seems that the church has softened it's stance in some areas regarding the subordinate role of women. Examples include allowing women to pray in sacrament meeting, changes to the temple ceremony that put less emphasis on women's subordinate role, and rhetoric from President Hinckley and other general authorities illustrating hat even though men preside over women, they are co-equal partners.

The disconnect between the church's gender roles and the American ideal of equality for the sexes will keep the discussion going.

Chimps observing making & using weapons

Chimps Observed Making Their Own Weapons

By Rick Weiss
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, February 22, 2007; 2:48 PM

Chimpanzees living in the West African savannah have been observed
fashioning deadly spears from sticks and using the hand-crafted tools
to hunt small mammals -- the first routine production of deadly
weapons ever observed in animals other than humans.

The multi-step spear-making practice, documented by researchers in
Senegal who spent years gaining the chimpanzees' trust, adds credence
to the idea that human forebears fashioned similar tools millions of
years ago.

The landmark observation also supports the long-debated proposition
that females -- the main makers and users of spears among the
Senegalese chimps -- tend to be the innovators and creative problem
solvers in primate culture.

Using their hands and teeth, the chimpanzees were repeatedly seen
tearing the side branches off long straight sticks, peeling back the
bark and sharpening one end, the researchers report in today's on-line
issue of the journal Current Biology. Then, grasping the weapon in a
"power grip," they jabbed into tree-branch hollows where bush babies
-- small monkey-like mammals -- sleep during the day.

After stabbing their prey repeatedly, they removed the injured or dead
animal and ate it.

"It was really alarming how forceful it was," said lead researcher
Jill D. Pruetz of Iowa State University in Ames, adding that it
reminded her of the murderous shower scene in the Alfred Hitchcock
movie "Psycho." "It was kind of scary."

The new observations are "stunning," said Craig Stanford, a
primatologist and professor of anthropology at the University of
Southern California. "Really fashioning a weapon to get food -- I'd
say that's a first for any non-human animal."

Scientists have documented tool use among chimpanzees for several
decades, but the tools have been simple and used to extract food
rather than to kill it.

Some chimpanzees slide thin sticks or leaf blades into termite mounds,
for example, to fish for the tasty, crawling morsels. Others crumple
leaves and use them like sponges to sop drinking water from tree

But while a few chimpanzees have been observed throwing rocks --
perhaps with the goal of knocking prey unconscious, but perhaps simply
as expressions of excitement -- and a few others have been known to
swing simple clubs, only people have been known to craft tools
expressly to hunt prey.

Pruetz and coworker Paco Bertolani of the University of Cambridge made
the observations near Kedougou in southeastern Senegal. Unlike other
chimpanzee sites currently under study, which are forested, this site
is mostly open savannah. That environment is very much like the one in
which early humans evolved and is different enough from other sites to
expect differences in chimpanzee behaviors.

Pruetz recalled the first time she saw a member of the 35-member troop
trimming leaves and side-branches off a branch it had broken off a

"I just knew right away that she was making a tool," Pruetz said,
adding that she suspected -- with some horror -- what it was for, as
well. But in that instance she was not able to follow the chimpanzee
to see what she did with it.

Eventually the research duo documented 22 instances of spear-making
and use, two-thirds of them involving females.

In a typical sequence, the animal first discovered a deep hollow
suitable for bush babies, which are nocturnal and weigh about half a
pound. Then the chimp would break off a nearby branch -- on average
about two feet long, but up to twice that length -- trim it, sharpen
it with its teeth, and poke it repeatedly into the hollow at a rate of
about one or two jabs per second.

After every few jabs, the chimpanzee would sniff or lick the tip, as
though testing to see if it had "caught" anything.

In only one of 22 observations did a chimp get a bush baby. But that
is reasonably efficient, Pruetz said, compared to standard chimpanzee
hunting practice, which involves chasing a monkey or other prey,
grabbing it by the tail and then slamming its head against the ground.

In the successful bush baby case, the chimpanzee eventually jumped on
the larger branch until it broke, exposing the limp bushbaby, which
the chimp then extracted. Whether the animal was dead or alive at that
point was unclear, but it did not move or make any sound.

Chimpanzee behavior is widely believed to offer a window on early
human behavior, and many researchers have hoped that the animals --
which are humans' closest genetic cousins -- might reveal something
about the earliest use of wooden tools.

Many suspect that wooden tools far predate the use of stone tools --
remnants of which have been found going back two-and-a-half million
years. But because wood does not preserve well, the most ancient
wooden spears ever found are only about 400,000 years old, leaving
open the question of when they first came into use.

The discovery that some chimps today make wooden weapons supports the
idea that early humans did too -- perhaps as much as 5 million years
ago -- Stanford said.

Adrienne Zihlman, an anthropologist at the University of California at
Santa Cruz, said the work supports other evidence that female chimps
are more likely to use tools than males, are more proficient tool
users, and are crucial to passing that cultural knowledge to others.

"Females are the teachers," Zihlman said, noting that juvenile chimps
in Senegal were repeatedly seen watching their mothers make and hunt
with spears.

"They are efficient and innovative, they are problem solvers, they are
curious," Zihlman said of females. And that makes sense, she said.

"They are pregnant or lactating or carrying a kid for most of their
life," she said. "And they're supposed to be running around in the
trees chasing prey?"

Frans B. M. de Waal, a primatologist at Emory University, said
aggressive tool use is but the latest "uniquely human" behavior to be
found to be less than unique.

"Such claims are getting old," he said. "With the present pace of
discovery, they last a few decades at most."

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The European Mormon Studies Association Conference

EMSA Summer Conference: Call For Papers

The European Mormon Studies Association (EMSA)

Inaugural Conference

University of Worcester, England

2-4 August 2007

Keynote address: Armand L. Mauss, Professor of Sociology and Religious
Studies Emeritus, Washington State University; Former Editor, Journal
for the Scientific Study of Religion

Call for Papers

"Periphery and Centre: European Mormons and their Relationship with
North America, 1837-2007″

While scholars have historically emphasised the experience of
Mormonism within the United States, there is a rich legacy of
Mormonism within Europe, beginning with the arrival of the first
Mormon missionaries one hundred and seventy years ago in 1837.
European Mormons in this Mormon periphery have had a changing
relationship with the American centre, from the 19th century when
emigration to the centre was encouraged, to the 20th century when
emigration was no longer church policy. What are the stories of those
19th century Mormons who stayed behind? How have European Mormons
viewed the United States through the years? What is the current
relationship between Mormonism in Europe and its American centre?

Papers are invited that represent a wide range of research topics
relating to the experience of Mormonism within Europe. We are happy to
welcome scholarly papers that come from different fields of study:
historical, theological, literary, sociological, anthropological, and

Please send an abstract to David Morris by 15 April 2007. It is
expected that final papers will be approximately 3,500�C4,000 words,
being delivered in a time of 20-30 minutes each. A question and answer
session will be available following each paper. Notification of
acceptance will be given by 1 May 2007. Session chairs may request a
draft paper in order to offer a response. It is anticipated that
conference proceedings will be published.

Conference attendees will be charged 15 GBP (10 GBP students), with a
five pounds reduction available to those who register in advance
(details to follow).

Worcester is a beautiful cathedral town in the heart of England, 10
miles away from the Malvern Hills and the Mormon historical sites of
Benbow's Farm and the newly-restored Gadfield Elm chapel. A history
tour will be offered as part of the conference. Details on transport
to Worcester and accommodation in the city are available at the
Worcester tourist information centre.

David M. Morris, University of Chichester
Conference Coordinator, European Mormon Studies Association
Ph: +44 (0)790 337 4685 Fax: +44 (0)870 132 8807
Email: davidmmorris at euromormonstudies dot com

BYU Blocks You Tube

BYU blocks campus access to YouTube
KATE MCNEIL - Daily Herald

It was the catch heard 'round the county.

With time expired, Brigham Young University quarterback John Beck
chucked the pigskin across his body to connect with a wide-open Jonny
Harline in the end zone, sealing a 33-31 victory against rival
University of Utah.

Minutes later, as jubilant Cougar fans drove home, videos of the final
play were being uploaded on YouTube.

A moment burned in the brains of BYU faithful is immortalized, at
least 15 times, on the ever-popular video sharing site. The only
catch? Even John Beck himself can't access the videos on campus.

YouTube is one of the newest sites to be blocked from BYU's on-campus
computers. It's self-explanatory that the school blocks sites like
Frederick's of Hollywood and the Wonderful World of Lesbianism -- but
why restrict access to every 20-something's favorite pastime?

"We use the filtering process for two reasons," said BYU spokeswoman
Carri Jenkins. "First to protect students from inappropriate material.
The other is because of our limited bandwidth. That bandwidth is used
for academic purposes."

BYU's filtering software, Secure Computing, filters three main things
-- pornography, adult content and violence, Jenkins said. BYU's
information technology department decided to block YouTube, despite
the site's own pornography filters, early fall semester 2006.

Google video is allowed, Jenkins said, because searches are conducted
through keywords. Secure Computing can easily filter out keywords like
sex, porn and violence on Google video better than it can on YouTube.
YouTube uses tags for its videos. In the BYU vs. Utah videos, tags
such as "BYU," "football," "answered," and "prayer" are used to find
Beck's heroic play.

"Inappropriate material can't be filtered on YouTube," Jenkins said.

Furthermore, Jenkins stressed that BYU is an academic institution and
its on-campus bandwidth should be used for academic purposes.

Internet access in on-campus residences like Wyview Terrace, where
Megan Timothy lives, is restricted in the same way as computers in the
Harold B. Lee Library. Timothy said she finds humor in most YouTube
videos and wishes she could access it at home, but understands the
block on campus.

"It's BYU and they block everything," she said.

Tyler Seibold's "beef" with the block is that he can't listen to new
music on campus. But, it's "not a huge deal," he said. The off-campus
accounting student can access the Tube all he wants through a private
Internet provider in his apartment.

In the campus newspaper, the Daily Universe, Todd Lagerberg said he
"saw much more nudity in the MTC showers than (he has) ever seen on
the BYU Internet."

Lagerberg, who also lives in Wyview, wishes BYU would "trust their
students more."

"There's really no way to get around it, I'm either at school or at
home," he said. "Both places I can't access it. If they're really
worried about the bandwidth usage, they should block MySpace too. On
MySpace you can find profiles that are pretty close to pornographic
but there's no blocks on that."

The university's IT department has the ability to monitor individual
students' Internet usage, but only do so if a concern is presented
about that particular student.

Jenkins said pornography access on campus is "not a huge problem,
given that our students are understanding of our campus environment."

"Everyone knows the Internet is full of garbage," said Adam Anderson,
a master's student in public management. "If you're going to block one
site, it's just a drop in the bucket."

Kate McNeil can be reached at 344-2549 or
This story appeared in The Daily Herald on page A1.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Mormon missionaries released by Nigerian kidnappers
The Salt Lake Tribune

Posted: 6:50 PM- SALT LAKE CITY - Four Mormon missionaries abducted
from their apartment Saturday morning in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, were
released unharmed at 10:40 p.m. (2:40 p.m. MST) Wednesday to the home
of LDS Church Bishop Sancho N. Chukwu, who helped negotiate their
release, church officials said.
The motive behind the hostage takings was not fully known, said
Quentin L. Cook, of the First Quorum of Seventy and executive director
of the LDS Church's missionary department. However, the captors likely
believed they had abducted oil company workers, for whom they would
receive ransom payments, then quickly realized they had made a
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, sticking to
policy, paid no ransom for the missionaries' release, said LDS Apostle
M. Russell Ballard, chairman of the missionary executive committee.
However, it did give the captors $810 to pay for the four men's food,
lodging and care during their captivity.
Church officials said they paid the money early on in negotiations
with the captors to ensure the men, all Nigerians age 20 to 25, were
properly cared for. They credited church leaders in Nigeria and
involvement of other community members, including tribal chiefs, in
helping to resolve the matter. And they expressed their gratitude for
worldwide prayers.
Officials could not comment on the captors, the details of the
abduction nor the conditions in which the missionaries were kept. But
they did say the missionaries were in good health and doing fine.
"Their spirits are high and they are expected to return shortly to
the work they love," Bruce Olsen, spokesman for the LDS Church, said
while reading from a prepared statement.
Cook fought back tears as he spoke about the "wonderful young
people" who serve the church and the sacrifices they make.
Speculating on what the missionaries might have been doing during
their time with the captors, Ballard said, "I think they were teaching
the lessons.. . . Hearts were softened."
The Port Harcourt Mission will continue operations, even amid
escalating violence in the oil-rich Niger Delta region. The LDS Church
will take precautions, as necessary, just as they did last month when
they moved five American missionary couples to safer ground in the
west African country. This decision was made in response to a U.S.
State Department travel warning and because it was the Americans who
were most likely to be mistaken for oil company workers, who've been
the targets of more than 70 hostage takings since the start of the
Of the 352 young missionaries serving in Nigeria, none are
American and most are African, officials said.
Moving missionaries around, in response to security concerns, is
nothing new for the church. They've made changes in missionary plans
due to conflicts in Peru, Colombia and Ecuador, to name a few. So
officials don't expect tensions in Nigeria to hamper the church's
Mormon missionaries first arrived in Nigeria in 1978. Today, there
are more than 74,000 Latter-day Saints living in the country.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Southern Baptist Convention warns Christians about teachings of Mormonism

Southern Baptist Convention warns Christians about teachings of Mormonism

By Allie Martin

Rob Bowman with the North American Mission Board of the Southern
Baptist Convention (SBC) says Christians need to be aware that the
beliefs of the Mormon Church are inconsistent with biblical
Christianity. As one Mormon candidate launches his White House bid,
the Southern Baptist official is urging Christians to take advantage
of materials his denomination offers that teach the truth about

The article continues here:

Darwin vs God in Kansas

The same ol' science vs. religion dispute erupts again in the same
state that had previously ruled teachers should become
"downgraded-preachers" and that scientific evidence for the
evolutionist theory is too scarce.

The State Board of Education approved new, evolution-friendly science
standards with a 6-4 vote Tuesday, replacing ones that questioned the
theory and had the support of "intelligent design" advocates.

The shift towards the evolution-friendly approach in Kansas schools is
not the result of some scientific breakthrough, it's merely the
outcome of the elections that took place last year for the State Board
of Education. A coalition of moderate Republicans and Democrats
decided it's time to favor Darwin again instead of God, making this
the fifth change in standards for Kansas schools in less than 8 years.

Conservative Republicans, who had recommended in 2005 that students
should receive their tuition inside the "intelligent-design" frame,
said after Tuesday's vote they weren't planning to reopen the debate
even if elections go their way in 2008. But the state law will require
another review of school standards by 2014.

In the mean time, Darwin's newly acquired advantage against God is not
that certain, with another change possible in the next few years in
the Board.

"I think we're good for two years," said board member Janet Waugh, a
Kansas City Democrat who supported the new standards. "Who knows what
the election will hold in two years?"

The Board recommended the deletion of paragraphs that dealt with the
evolution vs. creation problem, and allowed school manuals to include
key-terms from evolution-theory that refer to the common origin of
life on Earth and random mutations that lead to the appearance of new
species. The new standards are said to reflect mainstream scientific
views of evolution.

"There seems to be a pattern," said board member Steve Abrams.
"Anything that might question the veracity of evolution is deleted."

The political decision followed a day after the 198th anniversary of
Darwin's birth, which the University of Kansas celebrated with a
costume party and an evolution theory-biased documentary called "Flock
of Dodos."

The Board also revised the definition of the word "science",
describing it only as the search for natural explanations of what's
observed in the universe.

Some scientists and science groups believed the board's latest action
was significant because it turned back a subtle attack on evolution
that encouraged schools to teach about an evolution "controversy,"
rather than mandating that creationism or intelligent design be
taught. Intelligent design says an intelligent cause is the best way
to explain some complex and orderly features of the universe.

Opponents of the new standards, grouped in Intelligent Design Network,
rallied against the Board's ruling, claiming almost 4,000 signatures
were gathered from adherents of "intelligent-design".

Convincing those people about science' merits will be difficult, said
Jack Krebs, a former maths teacher who is president of Kansas Citizens
for Science.

"The bigger issue is the cultural divide. The intelligent design
people and the anti-evolution people truly believe that science as it
is practiced is atheistic, and excludes God, and this is really the
heart of the cultural battle," Mr Krebs said.

John Calvert, a retired attorney who helped found the group, accused
the board of promoting atheism. And Greg Lassey, a retired
Wichita-area biology teacher, said the new standards undermine
families by "discrediting parents who reject materialism and the
ethics and morals it fosters."

The new standards are important because they are the basis upon which
the state builds tests that involve science and how well students are
learning it. The schools' autonomy leaves any decision about how
students are being taught science to the teachers and local school
boards, but since tests are Darwin-inclined, members of the two
parties agree that teachers will most certainly choose the alternative
that offers their students the best chances for high scores.

Similar debates or legal battles over evolution took place in
California, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Ohio, Nevada and South
Carolina. In Kansas, the hearings from 2005 drew journalists from
Canada, France, Great Britain and Japan.

In the last five years, anti-evolution legislation has been introduced
in 24 state legislatures and similar policies were under consideration
in at least 20 states, according to the National Centre for Science
Education in California.

Glenn Branch, deputy director of the National Centre for Science
Education said "They have really been on a rollercoaster for the last
10 years in Kansas. This isn't really good for the state of science
education in Kansas for the treatment of evolution to be in such flux.
It probably does have the effect of encouraging creationism in the
local classroom."

Romney announces bid for presidency

Poll: Romney's Mormonism May Be An Issue
NEW YORK, Feb. 13, 2007(CBS) Republican Mitt Romney, a Mormon who
announced his candidacy for president on Tuesday, may face an obstacle
because of his religion, according to a CBS News poll.

A majority of Americans say they would vote for a qualified Mormon
from either party for president, but fewer have favorable views of the
Mormon religion than of many other faiths.

The poll asked Americans whether they would support a Mormon candidate
for president, without mentioning Romney's name. Sixty-three percent
said they would vote for a qualified Republican who was Mormon, and 66
percent said they'd back a qualified Democrat who was Mormon. But
about one in four people said they would not vote for a Mormon
candidate for president.




The percentage of Americans who said they would vote for a Mormon for
president was smaller than the number who said they'd vote for either
a woman or a black candidate in a CBS News poll conducted last month.

In that poll, more than eight in 10 voters said they'd support a
qualified black candidate of either party. Seventy-seven percent said
they'd vote for a woman if she were a Republican, while 82 percent
would back her if she were a Democrat.

Romney, a former Massachusetts governor, remains unknown to the vast
majority of Americans, including eight in 10 Republicans, according to
the poll, which was conducted before he made his announcement.

Romney is not the first presidential candidate whose religion is an
issue to some voters. When John F. Kennedy ran for president in 1960
there were concerns about his being a Catholic. But in a May 1960
Gallup Poll, 71 percent of Americans said they would support a
well-qualified Catholic candidate for president.

Americans have a less favorable view of the Mormon religion than most
other faiths. Protestantism, Catholicism, Judaism, and Christian
fundamentalism were all seen more positively than Mormonism in the
poll. Only Islam, of all the religions asked about, ranked lower.

Twenty-five percent of Americans said they have a favorable impression
of the Mormon religion, while three in 10 have an unfavorable
impression. Another 39 percent haven't heard enough about the religion
to say.

Other religions are viewed more favorably: Protestantism (61%),
Catholicism (51%), Judaism (48%), and Christian fundamentalist
religions (35%).


Protestantism/other Christians:
Haven't heard enough

The Catholic religion:
Haven't heard enough

Philip Barlow to Fill Mormon Studies Position

USU prof breaks new ground in the study of Mormonism
By Peggy Fletcher Stack
The Salt Lake Tribune

Philip Barlow, a Harvard-trained professor of theology and American
religious history, has been named the country's first full-time
professor of Mormon studies at a secular university.

After a nationwide search, Utah State University chose Barlow for
the Leonard J. Arrington Chair of Mormon History and Culture, a
significant addition to the school's burgeoning department of
religious studies.

Though a Utah native, Barlow has not lived in the state for
decades. After graduating from Weber State College, he earned graduate
degrees from Harvard in religion and American culture and the history
of Christianity. For more than a decade, he has taught an introductory
course in theology and suffering as well as upper-level courses in
Christian history, American religion, and theological explorations of
time, silence, and film at Hanover College in Indiana.

As a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,
Barlow intended his graduate studies to focus on everything but
Mormonism. His Harvard professors were intrigued, however, and he
ended up exploring the place of the LDS Church in American religion
for his dissertation. Since then, he has worked on a historical atlas
of American religion and a look at religion and public life in the
Midwest. He is currently the president of the Mormon History

"I was something of a curiosity and a sensation when I first
arrived at Hanover, which has Presbyterian roots," Barlow said in a
phone interview. "I've been operating within theological studies,
which I construe as a rigorous examination of theology. We see
ourselves as thinking critically within a Christian context which has
been broad enough to include me."

At USU, Barlow will not be discussing or promoting his faith.

"We are not teaching Mormon doctrine or theology . . . or testing
the truth of it," said Norman L. Jones, history department chairman.
"We are looking at what people do because they believe certain

USU's religious studies program, the first of its kind in the
Intermountain West, looks at religion from three different angles:
cultural, historical and artistic; social scientific aspects of
anthropology, sociology and psychology; and philosophical.

About a dozen students enrolled in the program last fall, and the
first one will graduate this spring, having completed all the
requirements by putting together classes from several departments,
Jones said.

Barlow joins Charles Prebish, an internationally known expert on
Buddhism, who was hired last year as the Charles Redd Chair of
Religious Studies. Eventually, the school hopes to add a chair on
Islam and another one on Judaism.

"One of the things we believe strongly is that this is not just
about the local situation; it's a global conversation," Jones said.
"How on earth do you have peace in the world that's so religiously

If the university doesn't step up and help students think about
religion in the context of its practice, we've got a problem."

Barlow is optimistic about his new assignment.

"I hope to erode boundaries of all sorts with this study," he
said. "I want to make USU a welcoming place for not only the outside
world to recognize Mormonism as an important topic and for Latter-day
Saints themselves to find a safe place where all questions are

Meanwhile, the Claremont Graduate University School of Religion in
Southern California is also soliciting qualified applicants to fill
the newly created Howard W. Hunter Chair in Mormon Studies. The school
hopes to review applications later this month.

Philip Barlow

* Position: Utah State University's new Leonard J. Arrington Chair of
Mormon History and Culture

* Education: Bachelor of arts Weber State College, master of
theological studies and doctor of theology, Harvard University

* Previous position: Professor of theological studies, Hanover College

Harry Reid's son goes with Hillary Rodham Clinton's campaign

Harry Reid's son goes with Hillary Rodham Clinton's campaign

6:23 p.m. February 18, 2007
WASHINGTON – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., has not endorsed a Democratic presidential candidate, but his son has.

Rory Reid is signing on as Nevada chairman for Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's presidential bid. He will be senior adviser on Western issues including public lands, transportation, resources and conservation, growth and affordable housing, the New York senator's campaign said in a statement Sunday.

Reid, 44, is chairman of the Clark County, Nev., Commission and a former chairman of the Nevada State Democratic Party.

The announcement prompted his father to release a statement noting he is still neutral.

"Rory is a 44-year-old man who makes his own decisions and I respect him for that, but let me be very clear: Rory's work with Sen. Clinton should in no way be taken as an endorsement by me," the senator said in a statement.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007


Here is a fun personality quiz that categorizes what religion you seem
to belong to (thanks Lorin). Strangely, it determines that I am a

Belief-O-Matic -- A personality quiz about your religious and spiritual beliefs

Even if YOU don't know what faith you are, Belief-O-Matic™ knows.
Answer 20 questions about your concept of God, the afterlife, human
nature, and more, and Belief-O-Matic™ will tell you what religion (if
any) you practice...or ought to consider practicing.

Warning: Belief-O-Matic™ assumes no legal liability for the ultimate
fate of your soul.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Women's Rights in Old Testament Times

The full text of "Women's Rights in Old Testament Times" is now
online. Here is a description from the publishers website:
Women's Rights in Old Testament Times

Old Testament women were often as tough-minded and strong-willed as
their male counterparts, and many were able to work the religious and
secular law to their advantage. Baker unravels the labyrinth of
Aramean, Assyrian, Babylonian, Canaanite, Egyptian, Hittite, Sumerian,
and Hebrew culture and interprets arcane biblical narratives in light
of legal custom. He considers women in business; surrogate sexual
partners and slave-husband counterparts to men's slaves and
concubines; inheritance rights of daughters; and metronomic marriage,
in which the wife provided land, occupation, and family for a less
well-situated husband. He makes many of the Old Testament stories
understandable for the first time and renders several object lessons
taught in Sunday School obsolete, though he also bolsters others and
provides grist for further discussion.

James R. Baker is a Salt Lake City attorney and free-lance writer who
has studied at Brigham Young University, York University, and Hebrew

The full text is available here:

Call for Proposals, 2007 Salt Lake Sunstone Symposium

Call for Proposals, 2007 Salt Lake Sunstone Symposium, 8-11 August, Sheraton, Salt Lake City

Proposal deadline is 1 May 2007.

This year's special focus is "The Public Faces of Mormonism." With Mitt Romney poised for a presidential campaign, with Harry Reid as the senate majority leader, with the four-hour Helen Whitney documentary on Mormonism past and present about to be debut on PBS in late-April and early May, with the formation of Mormon studies chairs at two major universities, with the rise of LDS blogging, with Benji winning this past season's So You Think You Can Dance? and Ken Jennings still parlaying his record-breaking Jeopardy! run into a continued national profile, it seems Mormonism is and will continue to be in 2007's national spotlight as bright perhaps as it was during the build-up to the 2002 Salt Lake Winter Olympics.

Given this profile, we felt it would be fun to explore today's public faces in terms of individuals as well as emerging trends and movements.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Historians weigh in on "Sepember Dawn"
From KSL News:

The writer-director of "September Dawn" told us his portrayal is historically accurate. The church calls it a distortion, and some, but not all, historians agree. Some analysts predict the portrayal of 19th-century fanaticism will upset many in Utah and possibly hurt Mitt Romney's presidential campaign.


Board members of the Utah Westerners were meeting so we showed them the trailer. One hundred fifty years after the fact, these eight historians and history buffs don't agree on Brigham Young's role in the massacre.

Will Bagley, Historian: "Brigham Young was the man in charge, and that's where the orders originated."

John Eldredge, Historian: "I do believe he found out about the massacre after the fact and probably was involved in some of the cover up."

In a show of hands only three of the eight agree that Young ordered the massacre, and one more said Young condoned it. All eight agreed he covered up the facts.

Writer-director Christopher Cain told us his film follows historical records closely. It portrays Young condoning, but not ordering, the massacre.

Christopher Cain: "I would say one of his speeches said that he felt that there was a need to protect his people." Q: By doing violence?" A: "By doing violence."

The director says he was drawn to the subject by parallels with modern-day religious fanaticism.


It's scheduled to open May 4th in about a thousand theaters nationwide.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

BYU Polygamy Page relocated

Apparently the BYU Polygamy page ( has been relocated to another site (thanks for the tip Chino Blanco). The Salt Lake Tribune has some details about the relocation here: .

The new site can be viewed here:

Additional material is on the new page in addition to basics of LDS doctrine:

BYU Polygamy Page: Did Joseph Smith marry Young Girls?

One of the questions posed on the short lived, so called "BYU Polygamy Page," (see ) was "Did Joseph Smith Marry Young Girls?" and if so, would this indicate that he was either immoral or even a pedophile.

The article (possibly written by Jim Engebretsen who copyrighted the "project" in the original BYU page) states that "the most conservative estimates indicate that Joseph entered into plural marriages with 33 women, 6 of whom were under the age of 18. The youngest was Helen Mar Kimball, daughter of LDS apostle Heber C. Kimball, who was 14. The rest were 16 (two) or 17 (three)."

Two of Joseph Smith's young wives are discussed, the 1st being Helen Mar Kimball. The article points out that opinions as to whether Joseph Smith had sexual relations with Helen Mar Kimball are mixed, with Todd Compton (author of the most recent scholarly book on Joseph Smith and polygamy, "In Sacred Loneliness: The Plural Wives of Joseph Smith") believing that there was no such relationship, but that it was instead, a dynastic marriage "to tie faithful families together." The article points out that the Tanners and other critics "assume that everything 'is all about sex'" revealing dimensions of their own biases.

While the article illustrates that the youngest wife (age 14) probably did not have sexual relations with Joseph Smith, the author bases his argument for Joseph's lack of sexual relations with Helen Mar Kimball on Compton's arguments. But he fails to mention Compton's assessment that sexual relations were the norm in Joseph's marriages except isolated cases [Compton, p.15]. By addressing only Helen Mar Kimball, one is left wondering if her case (and the case of sexuality) was the norm.

It seems that the article is the beginning of an apologetic approach towards difficult issues surrounding Joseph's young wives. However, rather than dealing with issues regarding polygamy head on, aspects of the article seem to lead the reader to make inferences that are incorrect or misrepresented.

Frank discussions of polygamy are needed, particularly from the church's perspective. But they should not mislead readers towards incorrect assumptions.

Salt lake Lacks Department Store

For First Time in Nearly 140 Years, SLC Lacks Department Store
February 3rd, 2007 @ 2:57pm

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- Saturday's closing of the Macy's store downtown
marks the first time in 139 years that Utah's capital city is without
a department store.

Ever since The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints founded
Zions Cooperative Mercantile Institution in 1868, there has been a
department store in the heart of downtown.

ZCMI is considered one of the country's first department stores and
was founded by church leaders to protect Mormons from Non-Mormon
merchants, according to one historian.

Today, the church has a more inclusive business model and downtown
retailers Macy's and Nordstrom are closing down temporarily while the
LDS church redevelops the downtown malls.

The $1 billion City Creek Center will open in 2011 with a total of
four department stores including Macy's and Nordstrom. The church
hopes the project, which will also include office and condominium
towers, will restore Main Street shopping to the draw it used to be
when a trip to ZCMI was an event.

"It's really too bad that that historic center of commerce will be put
on hold for a while," says Kent Powell, history programs manager for
the Division of State History. "Hopefully, with the new developments
down there, that will be a springboard to continue the tradition and
commercial significance of the area."

Uncomfortable with the influx of non-Mormons to the territory, then
LDS church President Brigham Young directed community and business
leaders to create the cooperative, according to Utah historian Martha
Sonntag Bradley, whose history of the homegrown store is called "ZCMI:
America's First Department Store."

Young thought non-Mormon merchants were selling Mormons overpriced
goods. He and other church leaders encouraged members to shop
exclusively at ZCMI, according to a brochure written by the Utah
Heritage Foundation.

Young was ZCMI's first president and customer, buying $1,000 worth of
goods, according to Bradley's book.

The May Co. purchased ZCMI in 1999 and the chain became Meier & Frank
stores. With a merger last year they became Macy's.

All that remains of the old store is ZCMI's 1876 cast-iron facade,
which still serves as the entrance to Macy's. The church has said it
will remove the facade during construction and put it back on the
front of the new Macy's store.

"I don't think there's the same sort of emotional connection to Macy's
or Meier and Frank as there was to ZCMI," says Bradley. "ZCMI was a
historical artifact a lot of people were connected to. It would be
much more controversial to put ZCMI down."

Utah State History Conference

Call For Papers:

The 55th Annual Utah State History Conference will be held September
6th-8th in the Salt Lake City Public Library. Proposals for
individual papers or sessions should be submitted before June 1, 2007.
Proposals should include a one-page description of the topic and its
significance, any audio visual needs, mailing address and telephone
number participants, and a one or two paragraph biography of each
participant. Proposals can be mailed or e-mailed to Kent Powell,
Utah State Historical Society, 300 Rio Grande, Salt Lake City,
84101-1182, For further information please call
(801) 533-3520.

BYU Polygamy Page - dumped

News about the ephemeral pages at BYU give pause to reflect on the nature of such short-lived information sources. Internet stuff doesn't live very long. Isn't it nice to know that a mistake can be made to go away just that easily?

I remember the original Mormon-l online discussion, back in prehistoric times. It was another technological experiment hosted by BYU resources, that started out as a wonderful idea, but much to the dismay of many participants, it quickly evolved into something else. Someone at BYU apparently got wise to the arrangement and pulled the plug. Didn't really have much effect on that kind of dialog -- the forum quickly jumped over to a new host, and continued on the same trend. But it was no longer officially associated with BYU.

Perhaps one good lesson I can reiterate is that not everything we can say should be said. Effective and accurate communication requires careful thought, sometimes even a bit of planning. Written expression used to be laborious and costly enough that it usually incorporated those facets. Many of our high-tech modes of expression no longer do -- or at least, the medium does not impose conditions that are explicitly conducive to those qualities. And culturally we seem well adapted to assimilating bits of information, hot little sparks that flare up so quickly, then just as rapidly fade into obscurity.

BYU Polygamy Page - dumped

Quick divorce
BYU polygamy Web page dumped

'Personal project' had sought to explain topic
By Brooke Adams

The Salt Lake Tribune

Article Last Updated:02/06/2007 06:52:44 AM MST
A Brigham Young University employee's attempt to offer an explanation
of "Mormon polygamy" on the school's Web site proved short-lived.
Jim Engebretsen pulled a polygamy page he had posted at on Monday afternoon after being told it violated
university policy.
Engebretsen did not have approval to place the "personal project"
on the school's official Web site, said Carrie Jenkins, BYU
But for at least three days, it appeared BYU might be tackling
head-on a topic that has bedeviled its owner, The Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter-day Saints, whose own Web site approaches the subject
of polygamy with great care.
By Common Consent, a blog site that offers LDS news and
commentary, announced Engebretsen's page Saturday under the headline,
"BYU debuts a website devoted to Mormon polygamy."
At the page, visitors could read about the origins of polygamy in
the LDS Church as well as current LDS Church President Gordon B.
Hinckley's denouncement of its modern-day practice (the church
abandoned plural marriage in 1890). The site offered scriptural
references to polygamy, speeches on the topic by former LDS leaders
and links to academic research on plural marriage.
Its approach was candid, to say the least.
Under the heading "Polygamy," it posed such questions as "Did
Joseph Smith marry young girls?" and "Did Joseph Smith lie about
practicing polygamy?" with answers drawn from or linked to scholarly
works at other Web sites.
The answers in short: Yes and yes, but times were different and
the dishonesty was a form of civil disobedience, according to Gregory
L. Smith's linked paper at The Foundation for Apologetic Information
and Research.
Engebretsen is the MBA director and an assistant dean for
corporate relations and career placement at BYU's Marriott School of
He and two BYU professors - Daniel Peterson and Robert Millet -
recently launched the More Good Foundation to help spread positive,
accurate information about the LDS faith on the Internet.
The polygamy page was launched in that spirit, said Engebretsen,
who worked with students to create the site and its content.
In his experience, Engebretsen said, polygamy ranks next to Mormon
missionaries - a subject he also plans to take on in the future - as
the most misunderstood aspects of the faith.
"It is a project to help people understand a little more about
polygamy and our church history," he said. "This is an attempt to put
down factual information."
Monday, Engebretsen acknowledged that as a relative newcomer to
Utah and BYU - he moved here from Philadelphia two years ago - he was
still "trying to figure things out."
"I thought they had cleared more of the information than they
had," he said. "We'll find another home for it. We were just trying to
get good content out. I can understand why they don't want it to be
associated with BYU."

Upcoming LDS Film

The Dance: A new romantic comedy

Familiar Spirits: LDS indie horror flick

Beauty and the Beast: A Latter-day Tale: Based on the original 1700s fairytale

Tears of a King: A new Elvis Much Elvis's life and career are retold
in flashback sequences after he receives a Book of Mormon

Passage to Zarahemla. contemporary people travel to Book of Mormon times.

The Return: Romance/drama/comedy

Another Singles Ward: The follow-up to 2002's "The Singles Ward"

The Work and the Glory 3: A House Divided: based on Gerald Lund's
third book, "The Truth Will Prevail;"

Nobody Knows: The Untold Story of Black Mormons: Documentary About
the 1978 revelation allowing the priesthood to go to

Legacy: Documentary about World War II veterans noting their
experiences during the war and looking at how those of us in younger
generations might live up to what those Veterans fought for.

Wolfman's Cabin: Legend has it that a man went insane and killed his
family in the mountains of Eastern Idaho who returns to his cabin each
year on the anniversary of the murders.

September Dawn: a love story set against the 19th Century massacre of
a wagon train of settlers in Utah at the hands of a renegade Mormon
group starring oscar winning Jon Voight

Helmuth Hubener biopic: Documentary about the German Latter-day Saint
teenager who opposed Adolf Hitler during World War II;

Confessions of a Hot Roddin', Pinstripin', Kustomizin', Teenage Icon:
feature-length documentary about Latter-day Saint artist Ed "Big
Daddy" Roth

The Global Mormonism Project

The Global Mormonism Project is dedicated to the collection,
generation, and dissemination of scholarship on The Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter-day Saints, more commonly known as the Mormon or LDS
Church. Based out of Religious Education at Brigham Young University,
Provo, Utah, our online undertaking promises to offer students and
scholars of religion, as well as interested church members and
friends, easy access to information on Mormonism in every region and
country of the world, as well as topics of international scope.

Mormon convert says Iran tortured him

By Robert Gehrke
The Salt Lake Tribune
Article Last Updated: 02/03/2007 01:38:26 AM MST

WASHINGTON - Iranian-born Ghollam Nikbin says he is nearing the
justice he has longed for since he sued Iran and its former president
in federal court three years ago, alleging he was tortured for
converting to Mormonism.
In a federal court hearing Friday, Nikbin testified in graphic
detail about the abuse he endured for several years in Iran for
abandoning Islam. He and experts also testified about the lingering
effects, which include almost nightly nightmares.
The hearing was a formality. Iran has not answered the claims,
and Nikbin is assured victory.
He is seeking about $40 million in damages.
Whether he will collect remains uncertain, but Nikbin is optimistic.
"I'm going to get justice," he told The Tribune after the
hearing. "All the money is going to be spent for destroying the
Islamic Republic of Iran" and the men who tortured him.
Nikbin's story began in 1975, when he came to the United States on
a scholarship. He earned an MBA and landed a job at Merrill Lynch in
New York City in 1979, the same year a revolution in Iran installed a
strict theocracy there.
He fell in love with a Utah woman who was a member of The Church
of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He converted to the faith and
was baptized in Murray. He and the woman married in 1982. They
divorced in 1985, but NikÂbin stayed and became a U.S. citizen in
Two years later, he returned to Iran to be with his family. His
mother and sister arranged a marriage for him, but the Munkerat, a
government agency that enforces Islamic law, raided the ceremony after
agents spied young boys dancing with their mothers, a violation of
Islamic code.
Nikbin says he was lashed 40 times and suffered cuts all over his body.
From that moment, he said, "It was in my blood, the hate for that
He spoke out against the government wherever he went. As he was
returning to America in 1995, he was detained at the airport and taken
to a prison.
"They questioned me that I change my religion and I deny it,"
Nikbin said. Days later interrogators confronted him with a Mormon
baptism certificate they likely found in his home.
His captors bound his bare feet and whipped them with an
electrical cord until his feet were bloodied and numb, he says. He
couldn't walk for days, he testified.
Weeks later, he was brought before a cleric, who pronounced
death by beheading.
"Every time I heard someone walking in the [prison] hallway, I
thought, 'It was my turn,' " Nikbin testified.
After months in prison, friends suggested he fake mental illness
so he could claim he was insane when he converted and he might be
spared. Nikbin was sent to an asylum, forcibly drugged and left in a
stupor. He was shipped to another jail, where he nearly died before
his brother and friends bought his freedom, he said.
Nikbin fled Iran in 1998 but he was tortured again, by guards
at the airport.
Back in the United States, Nikbin started a desperate campaign to
get his family out of Iran, eventually succeeding with help from Sen.
Orrin Hatch, R-Utah.
Today, Nikbin suffers severe mental scars from his time in
captivity, psychiatrist Howard Berens testified. He is depressed,
moody and withdrawn. He fears for his safety and sometimes suffers
"I do have a nightmare every night," Nikbin said. "On the street .
. . on the subway, if my mind goes where it's not supposed to go, my
tears come out without my control."
The tears also came out after the hearing Friday when he talked
about his daughter, now 12, a straight-A student who lives with his
ex-wife. He said he lives in fear the Iranian government might kill
In another U.S. District Court room Friday, a judge heard from an
Iranian seeking $1.2 billion, claiming Iranian agents assassinated his
prominent grandfather and took his fortune.
Iran won't fight the cases, but collecting damages is difficult,
said Sean Murphy, a professor of international law at George
Washington University. Most countries cannot be sued under
international law, but U.S. law has an exception for Iran and others
deemed sponsors of terrorism by the State Department.
When the lawsuits were first allowed, some plaintiffs were able to
recover damages by locating Iranian assets left in the United States,
but those were quickly tapped out.
"It's a tough situation, because often these are compelling
stories and you say, 'Wow, they should be able to get some
compensation.' But there's not much there to get, so in most cases
they aren't vindicated," Murphy said.
Judge John Bates will likely award damages to Nikbin this spring
or summer. Nikbin's attorney, William Pepper, said he is certain
Nikbin will collect his judgment by finding Iranian holdings in other
countries and getting foreign courts to recognize the U.S. ruling.
"The process is effective if you know how to do it," said
Pepper. "Most American lawyers just don't know how to do it."
But Murphy said foreign courts are unlikely to recognize the
U.S. exception to Iran's immunity.
Today, Nikbin lives with a brother in New York City. The effects
of his ordeal, he said, make holding a job difficult. He currently
works at a friend's nightclub.

Will Pope Benedict become a Mormon after he dies?

By Tom Heneghan, Religion Editor

PARIS (Reuters) - Pope Benedict was baptized at birth and will most likely be baptized again one year after his death, not by his Roman Catholic Church but by a Mormon he never met.

The Mormons, a U.S.-based denomination officially named the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (LDS), encourage members to baptize the dead by proxy in the belief they are helping the deceased attain full access to heaven.

Church members are told to focus on their ancestors, a rite understandable in a relatively new denomination founded in 1830. But so many now perform the rituals for celebrities, heroes and perfect strangers that the practice has spun out of control.

Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Genghis Khan, Mao Zedong, King Herod, Al Capone and Mickey Mouse have all appeared for a short time in the International Genealogical Index for proxy baptisms, said Helen Radkey, a researcher specialized in the IGI.


Sunday, February 04, 2007

LDS Tech Website

With the global reach of the Church, members from around the world are curious about the type of technical work we do. This web site is designed to give you a glimpse into that work and how you can get involved.

Our Purpose

In order to achieve this goal, we have several cultural beliefs that governs all of our work.

Be the Standard

We contribute in making our technology department a world class IT organization that sets the standard for the industry.

Receive Revelation

We call down the Lord's help in doing our work to aid in exalting the human family.

Know Our Customer

We understand our customers, those in the field and those at headquarters.

Speak Up

We professionally challenge, ask questions, propose alternatives, and exchange feedback.

Know Our Role

We understand our roles, act decisively, and encourage others to do the same.

Performance = Results

We take accountability to meet commitments and deliver services better, faster, cheaper.

Make It Easy

We use and improve processes so that it is easy to work with the Technology department.

Our new LDS Technology site is a culmination of various technologies, many of which are freely available in the open source domain.

In creating the new LDSTech web site, we had a few technical objectives that we wanted to meet. They were.

  1. Demonstrate our use of open source software.
  2. Create a site that was community friendly and encouraged participation.
  3. Limit the amount of resources that the Church would need to spend in maintaining and supporting the web site.

Forums can be read at :

Irreantum fiction contest

THE ASSOCIATION FOR MORMON LETTERS announces its seventh annual Irreantum fiction contest. Irreantum is a literary journal dedicated to Mormon culture; therefore, all contest entries must relate to the Mormon experience. For more information, email or visit

BYU Polygamy Page

Polygamy has been widely practiced throughout history in many different cultures and although Mormons today no longer practice it, polygamy is still common in many parts of Africa and Asia, as well in small pockets through North and South America. This section will ultimately contain articles which discuss polygamy throughout history and in various cultures. For now, articles will be reproduces from the website for which contains research and information on Mormonism. These are scholarly articles and will here include short introductions, but will otherwise be reproduced exactly as the authors wrote them.

Scholarly Articles about Mormon Polygamy:

Does the Book of Mormon condemn Polygamy?

Did Joseph Smith marry young girls?

Does the Revelation on Polygamy contradict the Book of Mormon?

Outside Articles:

Did Joseph Smith lie about practicing Polygamy?

Doesn't the Bible condemn Polygamy?

Did Joseph Smith condemn Polygamy?

Didn't the Mormon quit Polygamy because of the Government?

Religious and Mormon Literature Position at Utah Valley State College

Religious and Mormon Literature Position at Utah Valley State College

The Utah Valley State College English & Literature Department seeks
applications for a tenure-track, Assistant Professor of English who
can bring a scholarly, interdisciplinary approach to teaching
literature of religion and the sacred, as well as literature that
emerges from a religious culture, with preference given to those who
specialize in Mormon literature and related genres. We welcome
qualified applicants from a variety of disciplines including, but not
limited to, Religious Studies, American Studies, Cultural Studies,
Comparative Literature, and American Literature. A Ph.D. from a
regionally accredited institution is required at the time of
appointment; ABDs will be considered.

For additional details visit (where applications
should be submitted), or email Professor Lee Ann Mortensen, the hiring
committee chair at: UVSC is an AA/EO/Equal Access
employer. Applications received by February 28th will receive priority
consideration. This position will remain open until filled, pending

Fwd: Warren Jeffs taken to Hospital, Returned to Jail
Warren Jeffs taken to Hospital, Returned to Jail

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

FLDS leader, Warren Jeffs was taken to the hospital earlier this
week after he was found distressed.

Some former members of his polygamist group wonder if the incident had
to do with one of his prophecies.

Three years ago Jeffs prophesized that he would die a martyr and this
latest medical scare has former FLDS members, wondering if Jeffs is
getting a little nervous, that prophecy may not be fulfilled.

Ross Chatwin, former FLDS member: "Well if he doesn't die as he
prophesized here that I think that would be good for us."

Ross Chatwin was born into the FLDS religion.

He knew Warren Jeffs personally and says

Jeffs has told his followers he will be a martyr.

Ross Chatwin: "He just said that we has going to be just like the
prophet Joseph Smith."

Joseph Smith was the first prophet of the Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter Day Saints.

He was killed while in Carthidge Jail in 1844 by an angry mob.

Chatwin predicts if Jeffs dies as he prophesized his follower's faith
will become even stronger.

Jeffs was checked out Sunday morning by Purgatory jail medical staff
for heart problems.

He was taken to Dixie Regional Medical Center.

Because of privacy issues, we can't get specific details on his condition.

Jeffs checked out just fine and today he is in good health according
to Washington County Sheriff's Department.

Because he is such a high profile inmate, additional officers even
members of the SWAT team were called in to escort him.

Officials with Purgatory Jail are taking every precaution to keep
Jeffs alive and healthy.

Lt. Jake Adams, Washington County Sheriff's Department: "We're
monitoring him closely and making sure that he is getting enough
nutrition, food and the medical treatment he needs."

If Jeffs does stay alive while in jail, Chatwin predicts his followers
may question him as a prophet and Jeffs may be starting to get
nervous, too.

Ross Chatwin: "I think the reality is starting to set in…I think that
he is starting to realize that he has made some serious mistakes here
and it is starting to catch up with him."

Warren Jeffs has been in Purgatory Jail since September.
He was on the FBI's Most Wanted list and arrested in August after a
traffic stop on I15.

He faces charges of rape as an accomplice for arranging the marriage
of an underage girl to a member of his church

Mormon Studies Conference

The Mormon Studies Conference is an annual spring conference sponsored by the UVSC's Religious Studies Program. The event is designed to explore topics in Mormon theology, philosophy, history, culture, folklore, literature, politics, etc.

The Seventh Annual Mormon Studies Conference

Mormons and the Environment

Wednesday, April 4th

Speakers include Thomas Alexander, George Handley, and Steven Peck