Liz Lambson is a Korean/African American artist, musician, and writer, and – along with her spouse Sam – is a parent to five boys residing in Salt Lake City. Liz performs as a string bassist with the Ballet West Orchestra as well as the children’s singer-songwriter Lizzy Luna, the creator of the music-and-movement program Yoga Storytime & Songs. Liz performed for and toured with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square for several years.  She released her first album of original children’s yoga music, Reach to the Sky, in 2018. Her writing has been featured in publications including the New Era and the New York Times. 

As an active member of Utah’s arts and culture community, Liz formerly served as the Executive Director of the Utah Black History Museum. Her artwork is featured on Salt Lake City’s Black Lives Matter mural at City Hall. Liz is also an aspiring film actress.

In her spare time she enjoys needlework, gardening, road trips, and Scrabble. 

Liz’s Instagram: @lizzylambson

Liz’s Music & Social Media

“Never Too Soon”

1723: Converting to Mormonism in High School – Liz Lambson Pt. 1

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We begin Liz’s story with her family and growing up years as a biracial Korean/African American struggling to assimilate into white culture. Her mother converted to Christianity and became a religious fanatic, leading to her eventual abandonment of her husband & children. Liz is introduced to Mormonism shortly after and finds Joseph Smith’s early religious confusion relatable. With continued exposure to LDS peers, including a boy who particularly holds her interest, Liz gains a testimony of the Book of Mormon and falls in love with Mormon culture.

Liz also shares her struggles with academic, artistic and spiritual perfectionism in high school. We learn ways Liz gives up pieces of herself as she tries harder to assimilate into Mormon culture and eventually makes the decision to attend BYU.

Liz’s Resignation Letter

1724: Baptized into the Church at BYU – Liz Lambson Pt. 2

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We continue Liz’s journey as she goes to BYU and gets baptized. Liz explains her interactions with church and BYU culture, and the effect of “worthiness” interviews w/LDS leadership once she is an official member. 

At BYU Liz struggles to fit in with white culture and begins struggling with symptoms of mental illness along with outbursts of creativity. Things get heavy with a friend’s suicide as she battles her own depressive thoughts.

Liz’s Resignation Letter

1725: Working Mormon Mother Speaks Out – Liz Lambson Pt. 3

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After Liz decides to stay at BYU, she meets her future husband, Sam. Liz takes us through her courtship with Sam, their reasons for marrying each other, and the various complications they faced early on in their marriage. Like many LDS women trying to properly fulfill their purpose, Liz finds motherhood alone cannot make her feel happy & fulfilled with the exclusion of the things that make Liz who she is and bring her joy.

Liz’s Resignation Letter

1726: Mormon Convert Leaves Church – Liz Lambson Pt. 4

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Cracks start to form in the testimony and identities of both Liz and her husband Sam. Sam begins to question the narratives he was raised with after a trip to Palmyra and as his degree opens his eyes to the cold, corporate nature of the Church, while Liz struggles to keep her faith despite the growing number of things that feel so wrong and cause so much harm not just to Liz, but her marriage, children, extended family, community, and even the nation at large. Liz recognizes how much of herself she continually denied and gave up trying to belong and finally realizes that she no longer WANTS to belong to an organization at such odds with her nature and values. 

Liz’s Resignation Letter

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  1. David February 2, 2023 at 10:17 am - Reply

    Although Liz mentions deep regret for the temple marriage not allowing her father and family to attend the ceremony, she did mention that her father never notified her of his own marriages after her mother, and he also refused to attend baptisms and other milestone events of herself and her children. I am not saying that it is ok, as I have been in this situation more than once, but I am seeing a lot of parallels with her mother and father versus her own adulthood.

  2. Laurel Hulme February 8, 2023 at 4:31 pm - Reply

    For more information on redlining, I recommend the book The Color of Law. This was not only a practice in the early 1900s, but all the way through the 50’s and 60’s. One of the places this was a widespread practice was in the San Francisco Bay Area (Richmond, Palo Alto, etc.). As you might imagine, it seriously impacted the financial independence and inheritance of black people in the United States.

  3. Jose February 8, 2023 at 6:31 pm - Reply

    After listening to all 4 episodes, I am truly happy for you Liz & your family. One thing confused me. In episode 4 you stated something like ‘I have never liked being subjected to authority….’ Yet in LDS church it is expected that all female members submit to the authority of the prophet, Q15, and all priesthood holders. The male leaders dictate and control what you do, believe, dress, drink, who you associate with, and almost every aspect/decision of LDS life, from birth to death (i.e. buried in temple garments). Did you not yearn from the beginning of your LDS journey to be under the full authority of the male leaders?

  4. MDJ February 9, 2023 at 11:36 am - Reply

    I absolutely loved this podcast with Liz Lambson. I can really relate with her high school experience. I met my LDS friend when I was in Grade 11, and I was also introduced to Mormonism via the youth dances. The youth dances were so much fun and this was in the late 70s. I took the discussions after I turned 17 and I had made the decision that I wanted to get baptized. My parents would not give their permission. I was no longer allowed to attend church but I was still allowed to attend the dances. A lot of stuff happened by the time I turned 18 1/2 years old, and I changed my mind about wanting to be baptized. My parents were relieved and in hindsight, I am very glad that they did not give their permission.

    I can’t remember which Part but Liz mentioned the umbrella analogy, which is very similar to what the IBLP teach regarding the umbrella of authority. This analogy can also be described as Patriarchy. The LDS church definitely has a patriarchy culture, maybe not as toxic as the IBLP, but it is still there.

    Liz also mentioned her desire for acting. I have no doubt that she is well suited for acting after listening to her wonderful, funny and creative Relief Society Sister talk about the cardigan. That was the best.

    I think this is one of my favourite podcasts.

  5. Terry February 10, 2023 at 11:06 am - Reply

    I LOVED ALL OF THIS! Thank you!

  6. Chandra Smith March 7, 2023 at 4:11 pm - Reply

    This was an amazing story! I made it through! I am invited to the party! I am awaiting my invitation!😅

  7. michele Smith May 3, 2023 at 12:27 pm - Reply

    loved loved loved Liz’s story. Thank you Liz for sharing. I was hanging on every word, what a privilege to be able to hear this story. I so identified with much of Liz’s story, especially as a teenager. Thank you John for always having such amazing guests

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