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This book contains fifteen essays, each first presented as the annual Tanner lecture at the conference of the Mormon History Association by leading historians and religious studies scholars, approaching Mormon history from a wide variety of angles, from gender to globalization. Renowned in their own fields but relatively new to the study of Mormon history at the time of their lecture, the scholars bring their own expertise to understanding Mormonism's past and present. Examining Mormon history from an outsider's perspective, they ask intriguing questions, share fresh insights and perspectives, analyze familiar sources in unexpected ways, and place Mormonism in broader scholarly debates. Several essays place Mormonism within the currents of American religious history - for example, by placing Joseph Smith and other Latter-day Saints in conversation with Emerson, Nat Turner, fellow millenarians, and freethinkers. Other essays explore the creation of Mormon identities, demonstrating how Mormons created a unique sense of themselves as a distinct people. Historians of the American West examine Mormon connections with American imperialism, the Civil War, and the cultural landscape. Finally, essayists study recent Latter-day Saint growth around the world in recent decades, including in Africa, within the context of the study of global religions.
The pastoral image of Amish communities living simply and in touch with the land strikes a deep chord with many Americans. Environmentalists have lauded the Amish as iconic models for a way of life that is local, self-sufficient, and in harmony with nature. But the Amish themselves do not always embrace their ecological reputation, and critics have long questioned the portrayal of the Amish as models of environmental stewardship. In Nature and the Environment in Amish Life, David L. McConnell and Marilyn D. Loveless examine how this prevailing notion of the environmentally conscious Amish fits with the changing realities of their lives. Drawing on 150 interviews conducted over the course of 7 years, as well as a survey of household resource use among Amish and non-Amish people, they explore how the Amish understand nature in their daily lives and how their actions impact the natural world. Arguing that there is considerable diversity in Amish engagements with nature at home, at school, at work, and outdoors, McConnell and Loveless show how the Amish response to regional and global environmental issues, such as watershed pollution and climate change, reveals their deep skepticism of environmentalists. They also demonstrate that Amish households are not uniformly lower in resource use compared to their rural, non-Amish neighbors, though aspects of their home economy are relatively self-sufficient. The first comprehensive study of Amish understandings of the natural world, this compelling book complicates the image of the Amish and provides a more realistic understanding of the Amish relationship with the environment.
Many Christians who receive a prophetic message, or "word," from
the Lord don't understand that its fulfillment is not necessarily
automatic. Others don't know how to determine if a prophetic word
really is from the Lord. And still others don't understand what
prophetic ministry is and how it works.
The letters of Theophilus Lindsey (1723-1808) illuminate the career and opinions of one of the most prominent and controversial clergymen of the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. His petitions for liberalism within the Church of England in 1772-3, his subsequent resignation from the church and his foundation of a separate Unitarian chapel in London in 1774 all provoked profound debate in the political as well as the ecclesiastical world. His chapel became a focal point for the theologically and politically disaffected and during the 1770s and early 1780s attracted the interest of many critics of British policy towards the American colonies. Benjamin Franklin, Joseph Priestley and Richard Price were among Lindsey's many acquaintances.BR The second and final volume of this edition covers the period from the regency crisis and the early stages of the French Revolution to Lindsey's death nineteen years later, at the height of the Napoleonic War. His letters from this period reveal in depth Lindsey's central role in the formation of Unitarianism as a distinctive denomination, his involvement in movements for religious and political reform, his close friendship with Joseph Priestley and the tribulations of dissenters during the 1790s. From his vantage point in London, Lindsey was a well-informed and well-connected observer of the responses in Britain to the French Revolution and the war of the 1790s, and he provides a lucid commentary on the political, literary and theological scene. As with Volume I, the letters are fully annotated and are accompanied by a full contextual introduction. G.M. DITCHFIELD is Professor of Eighteenth-Century History, University of Kent at Canterbury.
Uldine Utley defined the "girl evangelist" of the 1920s and 1930s. She began her preaching career at age eleven, published a monthly magazine by age twelve, and by age fourteen was regularly packingthelargest venues in major American cities, including Carnegie Hall and Madison Square Garden. She stood toe to toe with Billy Sunday and Aimee Semple McPherson, the most famous revivalist preachers of the day. She became a darling of the secular press and wasmimicked and modeledin fiction and plays. In Preacher Girl , the first full biography of Utley, author Thomas Robinson shows that Utley's rise to fame was no accident. Utley's parents and staff carefully marked out her path early onto headline success. Not unlike Hollywood, revivalism was a business in which celebrity equaled success. Revivalism mixed equal parts of glamour and gospel, making stars of its preachers. Utley was its brightest. But childhood fame came at a price. As a series of Utley's previously unpublished poems reveal, after a decade of preaching, she was facing a near-constant fight against physical and mental exhaustion as she experienced the clash between the expectations of revivalism and herdesires for a normal life. Utley burned out at age twenty-four. The revival stage folded; fame faded; only a broken heart and a wounded mind remained. Both Utley's meteoric rise and its tragic outcome illuminate American religion as a business. In his compelling chronicle of Utley's life, Robinson highlights the surprising power of American revivalism to equal Hollywood's success as well as the potentially devastating private costs of public religious leadership. Themarketing and promotion machine of revivalism brought both fame and hardship for Utleyaclashing by-products in thebusiness of winning souls for Christ.
A collection of 230 hymns, with music, drawn from a wide range of liberal religious sources, all written in the 20th or 21st century; many were composed by Unitarian and Unitarian Universalist writers, often drawing their imagery from other faith traditions. The collection includes songs for blessing partnerships and relationships. The compilers have drawn on a wide range of musical styles, using keys in keeping with current group vocal range.
On September 11, 1857, a group of Mormons aided by Paiute Indians brutally murdered some 120 men, women, and children traveling through a remote region of southwestern Utah. Within weeks, news of the atrocity spread across the United States. But it took until 1874 - seventeen years later - before a grand jury finally issued indictments against nine of the perpetrators. Mountain Meadows Massacre chronicles the prolonged legal battle to gain justice for the victims. The editors of this two-volume collection combed public and private manuscript collections across the United States to reconstruct the complex legal proceedings that occurred in the massacre's aftermath. The documents they unearthed, transcribed and presented here, cover a nearly forty-year history of investigation and prosecution - from the first reports of the massacre in 1857 to the dismissal of the last indictment against a perpetrator in 1896. Volume 1 tells the first half of the story: the records of the investigations into the massacre and transcriptions of all nine indictments, eight of which never resulted in a trial conviction. Volume 2 details the legal proceedings against the one man indicted to go to trial, John D. Lee. Lee's trials led to his confession and conviction, and ultimately to his execution on the massacre site in 1877, all documented in Volume 2. Historians have long debated the circumstances surrounding the Mountain Meadows Massacre, one of the most disturbing and controversial events in American history, and painful questions linger to this day. This invaluable, exhaustively researched collection allows readers the opportunity to form their own conclusions about the forces behind this dark moment in western U.S. history.
The ?Nonconformist conscience? was a major force in late Victorian and Edwardian politics. The well-attended chapels of England and Wales bred a race of Christian politicians who tried to exert a moral influence on public affairs. This book analyses the political impact of the Nonconformists at the peak of their strength when they were near the centre of key debates of the time over such matters as the growth of the British Empire and state provision of social services. They had also launched campaigns of their own to disestablish the Church of England and to secure public control of the nation's schools. Based on extensive original research, this study is the first to examine these themes.
Do your quiet times with God feel disconnected from the rest of your overflowing days? Shouldn't our devotions affect how we live our lives? In this 90-day devotional for women, plain Mennonite mother and wife Faith Sommers helps connect your moments with the Lord to the rest of your life. Steeped in the faith of Amish and Mennonites, who maintain that how we live is as important as what we say, Sommers' words hold gentle warmth and wise nudging for readers tired of disjointed living. Offering daily devotions, prayers, journal prompts, and ideas for how to simplify your life and strengthen your faith, Prayers for a Simpler Life guides readers toward a deeper commitment to the way of Jesus.
In an era where church attendance has reached an all-time low, recent polling has shown that Americans are becoming less formally religious and more promiscuous in their religious commitments. Within both mainline and evangelical Christianity in America, it is common to hear of secularizing pressures and increasing competition from nonreligious sources. Yet there is a kind of religious institution that has enjoyed great popularity over the past thirty years: the evangelical megachurch. Evangelical megachurches not only continue to grow in number, but also in cultural, political, and economic influence. To appreciate their appeal is to understand not only how they are innovating, but more crucially, where their innovation is taking place. In this groundbreaking and interdisciplinary study, Justin G. Wilford argues that the success of the megachurch is hinged upon its use of space: its location on the postsuburban fringe of large cities, its fragmented, dispersed structure, and its focus on individualized spaces of intimacy such as small group meetings in homes, which help to interpret suburban life as religiously meaningful and create a sense of belonging. Based on original fieldwork at Rick Warren's Saddleback Church, one of the largest and most influential megachurches in America, Sacred Subdivisions explains how evangelical megachurches thrive by transforming mundane secular spaces into arenas of religious significance.
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