Minivan love.

And then this arrived from a Utah reader of The Book of Mormon Girl:

“I just have to tell you a sweet experience I had while reading your book. I was sitting in my minivan in the parking lot of my girls tumbling studio, reading. I was all emotional and leaned down to get a tissue. I looked over and another mom in a minivan was looking at me. She then held up her copy of your book that she was reading right then too. I rolled my window down as I was using my tissue. We then sort of commiserated about the tears we had shed over the book. I don’t know her story, but I know we both found part of our story in yours.

“Thanks for being so brave. I feel like I am having more courage to be open about my ‘issues’ with my faith. It is so helpful to have you and others be open about your ‘issues’ too. Like my mom always said, ‘There is strength in numbers.'”

Thank you for reading.  And thanks for letting me into your minivan.

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5 Comments

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5 responses to “Minivan love.

  1. I heard you interviewed concerning your “Book of Mormon Girl” last Sunday, on NPR’s “On Being”. I was deeply touched, favorably impressed and have ordered your book. I am not Mormon, but am a very spiritual person and have been searching for most of my adult life (including studying Mormonism). I also left my birth religion (the Deciples of Christ), which also led to a painful familial breakdown and during which time I converted to several alternate Christian and non-Christian traditions, none of which worked well. However, I must say that I was surprised that you identified the LDS Church as a part of the “resoration” movement, along with the DC’s. The reason that in good conscience, I could not convert to the LDS Church is because of the (perceived) many belief additions they have made to the Gospel of Christ: that the Marriage at Cana of Galilee mentioned in the Bible, actually was the wedding of Mary Magdalene to Jesus Christ; that Jesus and Satan are actually brothers; that Jesus Christ visited the Americas to visit a prehistoric civilization, here (which I understand according to anthropology is impossible); that it is necessary and acceptable to “baptize” the dead via proxy in order for them to be able to share in the “grandeur” of Mormon Eternity; and, that part of that eternal reward for Mormons whose “marriages are sealed in a Temple” is the pleasure of “eternal, youthful sexual relations”, among others! I told the missionaries and Mormon friends who were instructing me of my concerns, at the time, and they did not offer alternate explanations or suggest a misunderstanding. It simply does not make sense to me that Mormonism, as a young American religion is the only group with whom God would have shared His truth, and that he would have waited more than a thousand and five hundred years to do so! Nonetheless, I remain very favorably impressed with LDS practitioners and the lives that you live, that there remains an opening, if even by just a crack. I also had no idea that there existed a feminist movement inside the LDS Church, nor that there was anyone who defended the LGBT movement and same-sex marriage. THAT is why I ordered your book.

    I applaud you for your courage and the sincerity and determination of your obviously complicated and difficult faith journey! God’s peace and blessings to you and yours, is my prayer!

  2. Jacie

    Ya know, the more open I am the more i’m finding out there’s more of us out there then I would have ever imagined.

  3. Joanna: Little off topic for this post but been following you on religiondispatches and heard you few mins ago on NPR Talk of the Nation. And you were on segment morning edition couple days ago with Al Mohler of SBC…..I’ve read Bloom’s The American Religion and find this a fascinating moment….Hope you are in contact with Rachel Held Evans whose progression in southern evangelicalism is similar to your story in LDS….Question I hope you will pursue. Wil be interesting to probe Mitt Romney on the idea of inerrancy that fundamentalists of Huckabee and Mohler stripe used to takeover the SBC. In the framework of Giberson and Stephens work The Anointed; and in conversation with your colleague at RD.org Paul Harvey, pursue some of the convulsions Gov Romney must navigate if he is indeed to be authentic in re the Tea Party wing of his political community. Would love for you to email me at this alternative email site in addition to a reply here. Thanks. Stephen Fox, Collinsville, Al….My Dad was a Southern Baptist preacher. email marcodiazz@hotmail.com. My computer playing tricks. Forgive me if this is double post or submission

  4. Chris

    Joanna,

    I saw you on John Stewart and ordered your book straight away. Your words resonate with me at this point in my life. Being LDS is my history, it is my language, it is my story but as years go by, I feel disappointed (Prop 8) and disheartened by my church. I am not sure where to go with any of this but as I read your book last night, my heart ached for your experiences but was rejuvenated by your openness in sharing this story. LIke I said, I don’t know where to go with what I feel but there is a sadness and uncertainty but also a multitude of gratitude for the goodness of my life. I am sure you have been flooded with similar responses and am certainly not asking for you to tell me how to feel better (and I haven’t finished your book so maybe you will ;) but I do know that your book will sit on my bedstand and I will read and re-read it to help give me the hope that I need right now in my relationship with my church. I am not being nearly as eloquent as I would like in expressing any of this but I really wanted to let you know that I am thrilled you exist.

  5. I’m glad Stephen Fox mentioned Rachel Held Evans. I caught your podcast on On Being recently and greatly identified with your story, although I am from a Southern Baptist background. And as I was listening, it made me think of Rachel Held Evans who is working through similar issues but in the evangelical Christian world. I would love to hear the two of you dialogue, because your stories overlap so much–and they touch so many other women’s stories. I appreciate your sincerity and vulnerability in how you discuss these issues.

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