Monthly Archives: September 2012

My wife and I are really anguished over gender issues in Mormonism. Help?

My wife is a Mormon feminist, and I share many of her views. We have two children who we love very much and we want to raise them in a way that will keep them in the faith and close to the Spirit, while still hoping to instill in both of them progressive, compassionate views. We want them both to feel valuable and loved, by us and by our Heavenly Parents, despite whatever cultural pressures may be placed on them.

Obviously, there are some cultural elements of Mormonism that make some of these goals of ours difficult. Sometimes I look at my daughter and my son and simply don’t know how to teach them in a way that will help them find the deep spirituality and closeness to God that I have found within the core doctrines of the Church, while still helping them see and avoid some of the destructive attitudes and double standards that are applied against women in the Church. We want our son to see women as peers, as equals, as friends, not as opposites to somehow balance out prescribed, enforced gender roles. We want our daughter to feel the liberation of being her own person, living a life of intelligence, spirituality, and self esteem, feeling like she can do good both in the home and out in the wider world. We want that for both of our children. 

Sometimes I find my wife crying in desperation and anguish over the conflict she feels inside. She has a deep testimony and has had many spiritual experiences that have kept her in the Church. But there is a constant tension, as she resists some of the hurtful tendencies of Mormon culture and the persistence of certain sexist attitudes. She especially feels the ache towards our Heavenly Mother. She wants to get closer to Her, this figure of Divine Feminism, whom we give quiet lip service to in the Church (but not publicly, and not too loudly). She is hidden behind a veil and She has become taboo, which wrenches my wife’s heart. 

I want to help her. I want to help my children as they grow up. Frankly, sometimes I also want to help myself. These questions aren’t so easy for me either. I have put forth a great deal of prayer, and felt inspiration at times, but I would also love to hear other perspectives.  Help?

Warmest Regards,

Seeking a Better Way

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Filed under faith transition, feminism

Do Mormons view Catholics and people of other faiths as “abominable?”

I have done a fair amount of research on your faith and have found it to have many merits. My question has to do with Joseph Smith’s revelation that all denominations were “abominations” in the eyes of God. From further readings it appears that Joseph Smith singled out the Roman Catholic Church as the “worst” of the denominations.  Yet I came across an article in a Catholic magazine that had an interview with the Catholic bishop of SLC and the President of LDS, who described their denomination’s relationship with each other as good, and noted that the LDS church assisted Catholic Charities in aid projects.  Does the LDS Church still teach that other churches are an abomination?  Is this still a key tenet of the faith?  



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Filed under social connectedness

Book of Mormon Girl: childhood comfort food recipe contest winner!

Greetings, all, and congratulations to the winner of The Book of Mormon Girl childhood comfort food recipe contest:  Ellen C., of Portland, and author of the blog Flushed Face.

Ellen shared her mom’s recipe for burger bean cups, which has all the key components of an affordable Mormon family dinner–cream of mushroom soup? check. Canned green beans? check. Ground beef? check.  Dinnertime started at our house every night with the block of ground beef leaving the freezer and going into the microwave.  Good times!

Here’s the recipe:

One of my Mom’s classic dinners as we were growing up was “Burger Bean Cups”.  I have no idea where she got this recipe, or if it was something that other families ate, but I always loved them.  In fact, I still do.  They are little cups of comfort to me, and oh so retro.  There is nothing fancy about these, except maybe the fact that you use “french cut” green beans (ooh la la).  In fact, they’re kind of ugly. But the creamy filling paired with the hearty hamburger is straight out of my childhood.  After a freezing afternoon of snow sledding at “the dirt hills”, these were just the thing to warm us up.  Mom always served them right out of a muffin tin, the perfect serving size for a kid.  
I hadn’t had these in for-eh-vah… but I convinced Paul to let me make them one night last month.  They turned out perfect… just like Mom used to make.

Burger Bean Cups
1 lb ground beef
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
1/4 cup chopped onions
1 egg
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1 can french cut green beans

Mix 1/4 cup of the cream of mushroom soup together with the ground beef, bread crumbs, chopped onions, egg, salt, and pepper.  Drop mounds of the beef mixture into a muffin tin, hollowing out the middle to form little nests.  Combine the rest of the soup and the green beans.  Spoon the bean mixture into the middle of each nest. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 mins.

Please check out her sweet blog here, including recent pictures of a family trip to the coast–with crabbing–which left me plain jealous.

Ellen and other contest runners-up will received signed copies of The Book of Mormon Girl.

Thanks, Ellen!


Filed under social connectedness