Why do you value your membership?

John Dehlin Blog, Q&A, Writings 2 Comments

Up until experiencing my crisis of faith, I have loved nearly every aspect of my Mormon life.  I believe that I have benefited tremendously from my LDS upbringing, and I wholeheartedly affirm that the LDS Church can inspire people to live incredibly happy, healthy, productive, meaningful lives.  I believe that my Mormon identity is “in my bones,” and I do not believe that my Mormon identity can be taken off and discarded at the end of the day like a dirty shirt.  As a psychologist, I know that religious identity does not work this way for many (perhaps most).

In addition, I have observed other religious traditions (e.g., Catholic, Episcopalian, Reform Judaism, Community of Christ), and I know that these traditions have matured over the years, eventually making room for progressive thought, open questioning, doubt, and even dissent.  Consequently, my desire to stay LDS/Mormon is an act of faith and love towards the LDS Church and its people, with hopes that the church can eventually mature to the point where it can make room for all — LGBT individuals, feminists, intellectuals, scientists, doubters, skeptics, and even heretics.  For more information about why I have chosen to stay in the church, see here.

Comments 2

  1. John–Your podcast on “Why I Stay” was so beautifully and tenderly expressed that it brought tears to my eyes. I also wanted to say that I recently listened to your broadcast of “The Myths of Why Mormons Leave” and I was sobbing by the end of it. As a Mormon who has come and left several times, words cannot express how deeply your insight and compassion touched me. Every Stake President, Bishop, Relief Society President and the like needs to watch that broadcast! You speak so eloquently and respectfully of everything I have been trying to say to LDS church leaders for years. You have SO MUCH talent to give to the Mormon church!! You have given a voice to the voiceless, to those of us who feel so terribly alone. I have been praying for you and your family daily. Please give C & W a big hug for me! With deepest respect and admiration for your courage–Mrs. Kline (music teacher at NP)

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