James W. Ure Leaving the Fold

ISBN 13: 9781560851349

Leaving the Fold

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9781560851349: Leaving the Fold

Anyone raised a Latter-day Saint belongs to the culture, no matter how they may try to escape its influence, observes Ure after conducting the eighteen interviews that comprise Leaving the Fold. While examining the cultural influences on well-known "Jack Mormons" -- people who no longer actually participate in church functions -- the author wanted to explore the issues that separate them from their common roots. Interestingly the participants expressed respect for the church, its leadership and members, but hinted at a disappointment and longing, a sense of futility in their search for a promised ideal. Ure wonders if this is ironically due to the concept of perfection taught by the church.The author chose men and women who were raised LDS but left when they were older, and whose life experiences allow them to render thoughtful analysis of their religious choices. Readers will realize that every Mormon -- active or not -- is in some ways similar, something Ure hopes both groups will come to understand about the other

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From Publishers Weekly:

You can take the people out of Mormonism, but you can't take Mormonism out of the people. Or so say 18 "inactive" Mormons profiled here, who grew up in the church and left it during adulthood yet still wrestle with their Mormon heritage. Interviewer and editor Ure, an inactive Mormon himself, negotiates his own place outside the tradition during the course of these engaging conversations. A three-time Utah governor admits his difficulties in accepting the Book of Mormon as literally true, while a divorced woman speaking on condition of anonymity traces her defection to her realization that the Mormon theology of eternal families left little room for the divorced. Some of those interviewed gradually, and almost painlessly, drifted away, while others tried mightily to conform to the religion's expectations (one gay man recounts enduring electroshock therapy to "cure" his sexual orientation in the early 1970s, a procedure that is no longer recommended by the LDS Church). While some of the defectors' complaints involve specifically Mormon issues, such as the veracity of the Joseph Smith story, many outside the Mormon tradition will be able to identify with more general laments, such as the strict religion's exclusivity and insularity and the guilt that many feel when they fall short of their culture's expectations. (Jan.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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