How to Pray for Mormons

Recently, the Center for Great Commission Studies drew attention to a symposium on Mormonism held at BYU. This symposium helps us understand Mormons and thus know how to pray for them. 

Here’s an excerpt:

Many have gone out from Southeastern and chose to go and plant churches among the dark places here in North America. Utah is a great example of a place that desperately needs the true gospel of Jesus Christ. Ben is a church planter serving in the greater Salt Lake City area. He works diligently to show how a correct understanding of Mormonism is absolutely necessary for us as Christians, evangelicals, and Southern Baptists. Recently, a symposium was held on the Campus of BYU, a stalwart of the Mormon faith. This symposium highlighted three definitions of grace held by the LDS, Catholic, and Evangelical/Protestant perspectives.

Read the full post and check out the resources.

Greg Mathias on (Not) Fearing the Beard

Every Wednesday morning we highlight the writing and work of Southeastern’s Center for Great Commission Studies. This week, Associate Director Greg Mathias writes about evangelism and mission to Mormons by way of a bearded case study.

Here’s an excerpt:

Yes, our Mormon friends are in the news again. This time it is not for multiple wives, celestial planets, or sacred undergarments. It’s not even a news flash telling us of the changing fashion trends of your favorite Mormon missionary on two wheels. It is a brouhaha over facial hair choices often associated with No Shave November.


A growing group of BYU students are petitioning to have the beard-ban lifted on campus. What’s wrong with beard glory, you ask? Well, from the 1970s onward, the beard is a spiritual faux pas since it is identified with hippies, protesters, revolution, immodest fashion trends, and lack of spiritual cleanliness.


While the battle of the beard wages on the BYU campus, I’m going to let you in on a little secret: the beard is not to be feared. Mormons too often try and cozy up to Christianity, but the beard ban is just another example of the incongruity between these two worldviews.

Read the full post here.

Mormon Vampires in the Garden of Eden

It is likely you’ve at least heard of the Twilight series of novels (and movies), even if you have no clue what they are about. If you were wondering, they are vampire young adult romance novels that are all the rage with teenage girls. (My family had the misfortune of being at the mall one night when one of the novels was being released–it was teenybopper mayhem.) As some of my friends who have read the books have noted, they are filled with religious-ish images and symbols (which I would note is common to vampire stories). But now we know why these particular vampire stories use the particular images they do.

John Granger has written a brilliant review of the Twilight novels for the latest edition of Touchstone titled “Mormon Vampires in the Garden of Eden.” The article is available online. If you are even remotely interested in how even the most outrageous religious and philosophical ideas are communicated through popular media, I would highly encourage you to read the article.

HT: The beautiful Leah Finn, who first read about it at Denny Burk