The Strong and the Weak

August 31, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 7:57 pm   Category: Life,Mormon Culture/Practices,Scriptures,Theology

Kristen’s excellent post yesterday on teaching children compassion reminded me of a subject I have been thinking about lately. I saw the greatest ad on BYU TV recently. Some nerdy kid in a high school hallway scene had his books and papers spilled all over the floor by a passing bully. A big strapping athlete kid was nearby hanging with his jock and cheerleader friends and noticed it. He paused for a minute then went over to help the nerdy kid pick up his books. For some reason I found it touching (clich�s and all). There is something very powerful and moving about seeing the strong help the weak simply out of compassion. (more…)

The Kids in America

August 30, 2005    By: Kristen J @ 1:30 pm   Category: Life

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about how to raise kind and compassionate children. I think I know how to teach them to have compassion for those they know personally, but I’m not sure I know how to teach them to have compassion and take some responsibility for people they don’t personally know. For that matter I’m not sure if I know how to do that myself. (more…)

The True Church — It’s Not For Everyone

August 29, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 2:50 pm   Category: Eternal Progression,Mormon Culture/Practices,Scriptures

In my last post, the second in this series on our nearly exclusive focus on helping everyone become “active” members of the Church, I explained why I think that simply meeting the basic requirements to be considered an active member and staying that way until death is not sufficient for exaltation. (It was a pretty good post, actually. If it weren’t so long maybe more people would have read it.) The idea was that over reliance on Grace is dangerous because it can lead those with the proverbial “five talents” to become satisfied with their five talents and not double them. Expanding on that analogy, let’s say that becoming an active member of the church and staying that way is the equivalent of two talents. For those born into this world with one talent, turning that into two talents would indeed warrant those desired words from God “well done thou good and faithful servant”. But what of those that arrive here with 2-5 talents? What must they do to receive that commendation from the Lord? If just meeting the minimum requirements to be called an active Mormon is not enough, what then? Is the church providing the needed assistance to these folks to double their talents in this life? (more…)

Come On and Take a Free Ride?

August 28, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 7:13 pm   Category: Atonement & Soteriology,Theology

In my last post I brought up the point that we as a church spend nearly all of our energy helping people (both non-members and inactive members) become active members of the church. That is a worthy effort, to be sure. My concern is that I hear very little talk about the gap between being an “active” Latter Day Saint and a Celestial-natured person worthy of exaltation. So the question of this post is whether there really is a gap between being (and remaining) Active and being Exalted. (more…)

Wonder-Morm Powers… Activate!

August 26, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 4:41 pm   Category: Mormon Culture/Practices

The Baron over at Millennial Star has put together a nice series on the subject of member activity and retention in the Church. This is a lingering response to press that came out several weeks ago claiming that real church growth has been flat for several years. We Mormons have become very proficient at wringing our hands over losing active members to inactivity (or less-activity depending on the situation and the point of view). I have a couple of worries about the current paradigm in the church. One is I’m not sure exactly what active means. The Second is that I worry that we are so focused on getting people “active” that we may not have much of a plan to move from that point to the final end God has in mind for the saints. (more…)

Cover Tunes

August 24, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 11:14 pm   Category: Rock 'n' Roll

Action is pretty light again this week in the ‘Nacle so I thought some light fare might be in order here as well.

I mentioned a cover band I used to play with in a previous post. But my (primary) former originals band, Noisepie, also did lots of covers. Of course we would “Pie” the songs up and make them our own. This post is mostly an excuse to show off some of these songs. I wish we had recorded more of our cover songs because some were pretty classic (you’ll have to ask if you’d like me to ramble on about that), but at least I have these for posterity’s sake. (I might have put this post up at Kulturblog if it weren’t so shamelessly self-aggrandizing…). Anyway, here they are with links to the MP3s: (more…)

How can you tell if you are an orthodox Mormon or not?

August 23, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 10:02 am   Category: Mormon Culture/Practices

There have been lots of religious surveys floating around in recent months. Nearly all of them ask participants where they rate themselves on a scale of orthodoxy-liberalism. I have invariably rated myself as an orthodox Mormon. For those of you that have hung around here a bit — Does that surprise you or is that exactly what you would think? In this post I’d like you to help me figure out what those terms orthodox-liberal mean for Mormons. (more…)

I Wish I Were Hot for Teacher

August 19, 2005    By: Kristen J @ 11:05 am   Category: Mormon Culture/Practices

I think I’m going to die, literally. I know when too. It’s going to be this Sunday and it’s going to be in one of two places. The first place it could happen is right after the teacher in Sunday School asks us why we think it would be a good idea to have prayer in our lives. The second place it could happen is in relief society right after the teacher says, “Ok, who has quote number three?” (more…)

Are We Eternal or is it Just Our Parts That Are Eternal?

August 17, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 11:31 pm   Category: Spirits/Intelligences,Theology

Rusty’s recent post got me a’thinkin. And that means trouble my friends, that means trouble. (more…)

Happy! Happy! Joy! Joy!

August 16, 2005    By: Kristen J @ 10:14 pm   Category: Happiness,Life

It seems that most of us spend a lot of time whining over the bad things in life. I know I have done my share of wishing for a new day when I will be a college graduate, or I can quit this crappy job, or have a baby, or have the baby sleep through the night. The list could go on for quite some time. It’s a hard urge to fight, yet fight we must because “men are that they might have joy.” (more…)

Envisioning the Bloggernacle of August 2006

August 15, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 11:50 pm   Category: Bloggernacle

There have been a few posts floating around on the age and the history of the Bloggernacle. This post is all about the future of this collection of Mormon blogs and those who visit them that we call the Bloggernacle. (more…)

Thanks for Your Service, Don’t Let the Door Hit Ya Where the Good Lord Split Ya

August 14, 2005    By: Kristen J @ 8:11 pm   Category: Mormon Culture/Practices

About a week ago I made a comment on Nine Moons about how I was ousted from my calling due to scandal. I thought people would ask me what the scandal was but to my great disappointment no one did. Not one! Maybe you’re just too polite, or too busy, or just not interested. (more…)

Neurotic Hobby Hunt

August 11, 2005    By: Kristen J @ 9:44 pm   Category: Life

I can always tell when I’m nearing the cliffs of insanity in my mind. I start looking for a hobby. When I was first married and would mention to my husband that I needed a hobby he would try to help me in anyway he could. Now he just rolls his eyes and tucks into what ever task he is currently about. I think it’s a defense against boredom, or restlessness, or depression, take your pick. I’m not sure if it’s normal or not, I guess you the reader can let me know on that one. (more…)

If you weren’t Mormon would you take a job in (and relocate to) Provo?

August 10, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 9:24 pm   Category: Mormon Culture/Practices

I talked with an old friend today. He called because he knew I went to BYU and wanted to get my opinion on the Provo/Orem area. He is living in Southern California but a company out in BYU Land is courting him for a position they have open and he wanted to know what I thought. (more…)

Stalked by the Living Scriptures

August 8, 2005    By: Kristen J @ 10:51 pm   Category: Mormon Culture/Practices

I am not good with sales people whether they come to my door or they call me on the phone. I try to be nice despite my extreme annoyance but it is very hard. My husband is very good with sales people who initiate contact with us. I think it was his years on a mission that make him more compassionate in this area than I am. Some of the sales people I am most irritated with are those who use my religious affiliation to get me to buy their products. Let me tell you of an experience I had just last week. (more…)

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