572: Announcing the Mormon Transitions Project

A first draft of the vision/strategy for the new “Mormon Transitions” initiative can be found below.

Also, for those interested, we will be holding our first Mormon Transitions retreat October 23-25, 2015 in Park City, Utah.  If you are interested in attending, please watch the video below, become a monthly subscriber at Mormon Transitions, and then email me at: mormontransitions@gmail.com to express interest.  More details coming soon!


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  1. Excellent recap of all your accomplishments! Can’t thank you enough. I’ve said it before, you have fought the good fight John. Thank you for all you have done. Thanks for all the resources and helpful insights, and thanks for all your personal sacrifices. I hope this new endeavor is successful. I think it will be. Healing and growth are my main focus now too. I know the issues with church history, they no longer interest me, building a happy post mormon life does.

  2. John,

    I can’t seem to come up with the words of how grateful I am for the work you have done over the last ten years. I have listened to most all of your pod casts. Maybe sometime in the future I could share my story, right now all this is really driving a wedge between my wife and I, but I have known for years that the church is not true. Anyway the one thing I can offer at this time is some financial support. I will go to your new website and sign up to be a monthly supporter. Good things will come from this new adventure, thanks for being the one who is willing to walk this path, I know that it is not always easy.

    John Goff Cottonwood! Arizona

  3. Thank you so much for your work in this field. I am in desperate need of help in transitioning as my husband is still TBM as well as most of our family. At first, it felt like my whole life would fall apart. I’m taking it one day at a time. Your podcasts are my therapy.

  4. Good job, John. Your work is some of the most important ever accomplished in the history of the church [in my opinion], so necessary for so many individuals coming to a knowledge of the truth and then, trying to cope with this new found knowledge. In my own situation, family difficulties top the list of issues that must be dealt with. It is very painful for all involved [on both sides of the faith issue], so good luck to you in this new undertaking, it is so badly needed!

  5. I was very interested by the numbers you mentioned regarding downloads etc. In the first part of this podcast. I think you should make these statistics more available as it made me feel like there are so many people out there just like me starving for podcasts that serve as a therapy when dealing with issues related to the church. I personally think those are some seriously stealthy numbers that the top brass of mormonism should be paying attention to and not ignoring. It’s amazing what you’ve been able to do with your shoestring budget compared to the enormous wealth of the mormon church.

  6. John,
    Don’t post my name. I’m not as brave as you are. I think I/we could benefit from this and wonder how many friends and family could also benefit.
    My wife and I both grew up in Cache Valley and are life-long Mormon s born into the LDS church and raised in the 70’s/80’s. Like many, I always had had the typical questions but accepted the plausible, white-washed, canned answers that my mom and others always gave. Served mission, yadda, yadda, yadda.
    I truly lost my testimony of Joseph Smith back in about 2003 after seeing “Journey of Man” by geneticist, Spencer Wells on PBS. As a TBM, not looking for so-called “anti-Mormon” materials, the realization that the Book of Mormon simply could not be what the church claims it is; and the subsequent realization that the Church and Joseph Smith also could not be “true” by the Church’s own litmus test, were a huge trauma in my personal life for about two years. During that time, I read “Rough Stone Rolling” on the advice of my well-meaning and avid Mormon history buff father. RSR only further confirmed my belief that Joseph Smith was a con man. However, I finally settled into a life of “doing as Romans do” in order to not make waves, not freak out my kids, not freak out friends and neighbors, and not break my Mom’s heart.
    Years went by with me being half-heartedly active in the church, all the while my heart torn by living a lie. I kept secretly telling my wife and close friends “I think it may all be a bunch of hooey” and “what if it is all a bunch of hooey”. I was the “crazy heretic” who had been bamboozled and needed rescuing. Thankfully, my accepting and loving wife was willing to put up with here “crazy, heretical husband”. Through all that time, I had no idea about postcasts, bloggernacles, not even what Sunstone was (although I had at least heard of Sunstone)…. Because it would be wrong to go looking for answers, right?

    When I finally came clean about my doubts with my bishop, he (ironically) told me that I needed to “just drink the look-aid”. But I just couldn’t do it and lost my temple recommend, even as a full tithe-payer.
    In an ironic twist, things finally broke loose when my step son, after suffering though several years of crippling depression, came out as gay to my wife. After trying to feed him the party line, unsuccessfully, she was finally forced to really challenge her beliefs. After coming to the conclusion that the church’s stance toward and treatment of gays was actually a toxic environment for our son. That was the first time I really searched online for additional information regarding the claims of the church. It didn’t take long to find the same information I had learned from easing RSR. The piece on the Book of Abraham “translation” on Mormonthink.com was the final straw for my wife. “Are you kidding me?!?!”, she said. “How on earth are we still even using that book?!?!”
    Your podcast, along with mormonthink.com, and “CES Letter” by Jeremy Runnels finally gave us the courage (and ammunition) to tell our bishop and neighbors that we wouldn’t be attending nor participating in the religion anymore.
    Despite not having attended church or paying tithing for nearly a year and a half, neither of us have been able to find it within ourselves to “come out of the closet” (as non participating Mormons) with our family and close friends or even old high school, childhood, or social media friends. How were you able to do this? I literally have hundreds of high school and Jr. high and College friends still in Cache Valley and on the Wasatch Front. We have approached only a handful and the topic is not usually received well. Also, our parents are old and why bother breaking their hearts and dashing their hopes at this point? Yet, I feel a strong sense of duty to “earn my neighbor”! It’s a dilemma. Aauuughgh!

  7. Hi John
    I am happy to see you so excited about what you want to put your energy and time into and these are good goals I will miss listening to your podcasts If all you do is the transition project
    it still doesn’t quite fit what by biggest needs are and I may be different than most people
    Although I know the church is not true and I am not involved I still am searching for more truth about the church…..both history and current disturbing facts– and I will probably be on this quest for the rest of my life — so I am looking for sources of information and podcasts that Will increase my knowledge in this area
    What I also need is the opportunitiy to continue to process my reaction to this whole disturbing experience — which means I need to express a lot of sorrow frustration and pain — and it is helpful to discuss these issues and feelings with people-who understand and support me . unlike the death of a loved one I am going to continue to process this for many years to come —
    I feel like what I do with my life from here is a personal choice and I am capable of doing that — but it is nice to know there are good people like you who support and care
    if you do anymore podcasts like the DNA one– facts about the history or current church — I don’t want to miss it
    I am sad that I won’t be hearing much from you and I will miss that a lot I hope you’ll reconsider doing more Mormon stories podcasts
    Thanks for all the truth you have brought into my life and the courage to be honest

  8. Sorry! I had to watch your video with my phone on mute so I did not hear the part where you said you were not going to continue Mormon Stories.

    I know that MS had affected people in different ways. For me, it gave me the freedom to direct my own beliefs. I don’t take things as literally as I once did. I find I am better able to separate culture from gospel. I feel liberated. I am still a believer in the basic gospel principles, but I feel like I have permission to think for myself. I now consider myself “unorthodox.” It feels so good.

    I am personally in a healthier place mentally because of Mormon Stories so thank you for all of your work. I know it has affected others differently, but it was good for me because I had a lot of religious anxieties.

    Good luck with your endeavors. I am paying off six-figure Ph.D. Debt so I am not able to contribute. Sorry for that. I wish you the best though!

  9. This is a project that is not off the ground yet. Carol Lynn Pearson has helped me with it, and this seems like things are perfectly timed to incorporate the work we have done into Mormon Transitions.

    The original artwork is mine, and can be altered in any you deem necessary to incorporate into Mormon Transitions.


  10. Michael Francis

    Congratulations John to you getting your Phd ! I have been greatly blessed by the interviews at Mormon Stories. It has made recovering from a faith crisis a lot easier. Keep up the good work.

  11. John, I am deeply in your debt for the wealth of helpful work that you have selflessly brought to bear through Mormon Stories. I am a gay dad of 5 kids, former LDS bishop, and former member of the Church. The many wonderful podcasts that you have put out there, with viewpoints of so many great people has been so helpful and a cause of much hopefulness. Blessings to you for this. I know the journey has not been easy for you personally. However, your record of courage will go down in history as one who has been a Savior on Mount Zion for so many. You have helped hundreds gain a healthy view on life and a sense of having a place at the table. Because of the work that you have unapologetically put out there, you have helped me an others believe that we are worthy of the love of a loving God and Savior. When you are weary, just remember this. Many of these podcasts and the words of so many great people have resonated, and given hope and enlightenment.

    As an ex-Mormon, I do not take joy in putting the LDS faith or any other faith down. The believers can go on believing and practicing as they wish. Many of us have found a different path that is as earnest, spiritual and devoted to goodness and hope in a bright future. Neil Maxwell said, “many who leave the Church cannot leave the Church alone”. Vindication or ill wishes are futile endeavors which sap energy and misguide our focus.

    I have found so many amazing experiences with spirituality and goodness in others since being asked to leave the fold. After visiting a few other faiths, I have concluded that all religions basically have the same need for institutional control. Meanwhile a sense of a deep acceptance and direction in my life of a loving God, has emerged. It has sustained me daily through some hard times. The term “faith transition” seems to be a health name for a lifelong quest. It is not about dwelling in faith “crisis”. It is about contributing and being a part of walking the path with many who are wounded or weary; lifting and helping. I offer this with deep appreciation of many who have helped me in life — you are one of them!

    I will always be grateful for my upbringing in an LDS home, with all of it’s goodness AND dysfunction. I simply can no longer accept some of the doctrines, policies and practices of the institution; which seem to have added so many layers to the simple gospel of Christ. Oddly, all of this is created by men — not God.

    Meanwhile, many of us simply walk away and try to humbly seek, lift, and walk a path of faith; never having abandoned our basic beliefs in the gospel of a loving God and His Son. How we treat the poor and sustain one another; offering gratitude for simple daily blessings is a thing of beauty and grace. I’m grateful for this journey. Thank you again for your example and work.

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