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Has Mormonism Peaked?
45 members have voted
1. Has Mormonism peaked in terms of active membership, influence?
I'm LDS and I think Mormonism has peaked13
I'm LDS and I do not think Mormonism has peaked27
I'm not LDS and I think Mormonism has peaked4
I'm not LDS and I do not think Mormism has peaked1
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By Five Solas
Thinking about BYU losing the US Air Force ROTC program it has hosted, almost since the inception of the Air Force (as a separate service from the USAAC). Although some will play down the move to UVU – I think this could prove a watershed moment for BYU and for LDS.
For over half a century the Air Force played by the rules of the LDS authored “Honor Code” at BYU and found officers willing to work within its constraints. In return, BYU supplied thousands of competent officers.
And whatever the exact equation of costs vs. benefits for Air Force officer recruitment/training, one thing is certain: The LDS Church and its flagship university aren’t as valuable as they used to be. They used to be worth accommodating--and now they're not. LDS influence stands diminished.
A couple years ago, Daniel C. Peterson wrote an article that was perhaps prescient—
Growing up in the fifties and sixties, it was easy to assume that American society respected Latter-day Saints. We might be out on the theological fringe, regarded as a bit quirky, but American civic religion was at least theoretically pretty much on our side. For example, Americans seemed to honor ideals of faithful, heterosexual marriage, with fathers taking the lead and mothers caring for children. Society was, in other words, largely in sync with, and supportive of, fundamental, practical Mormon values. In fact, Mormons seemed quintessentially American — which, in the postwar era of the Pax Americana, benefited our church not only in the United States but in Europe and Japan.
Today, though, Mormonism and Western society seem to be parting ways in crucial respects.
What do folks think? Is the Air Force ROTC departure from BYU related to a broader trend Peterson wrote about in 2015?
This looks to be a huge step forward and I applaud BYU for it. It will be interesting to see what exactly an amnesty clause looks like.
I'm very proud of BYU today. The advisory committee worked quickly to make their recommendations and BYU has accepted all 23 recommendations though some of them will be phased in gradually. Among the immediate changes will be that survivors of sexual assault who report to the Title IX office will receive amnesty for other violations of the honor code that occurred near the time of the assault. This will encourage more victims to step forward and report their assaults which will in turn help BYU get rid of the perpetrators and provide greater security on campus and among its students. This is great news.
By phaedrus ut
I came across something recently and I think it's interesting in light of the current criticisms of BYU's desire to join the Big 12. Because of the ban on black members going beyond baptism in their church membership I had heard about some of the historical controversies. I knew about the Wyoming 14, the protests from UTEP, and Stanfords suspension of competition with BYU but I hadn't read about the protests at University of Washington and the church's public response. I just recently read The BSU takes on BYU and the UW Athletics Program, 1970. From the article:
The interesting part of the article for me was that on March 31, 1970 BYU took out a full page ad in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Ernest Wilkinson wrote in rebuttal.
Which reads strangely similar to the statement from BYU spokesperson yesterday
There are some other interesting points in the article. Quoting Brigham Young as a defender of the rights of "the negroes", saying there were no blacks living within a 35 mile radius of the university, confirming that the ban on those of black African lineage has been "confirmed by each Prophet of the Church". But one of my favorite quotes is
Since the 2008 membership numbers were released I have been tracking 20 areas of the world. This year might have been the most interesting.
California's membership decreased by 4,867 and the number of units decreased by 10. Ghana's membership increased by 5,367 and the number of units increased by 37. This is the 6th straight year that Sweden has stayed at 40 units. Peru increased its membership by 11,231 but lost 10 units. I have attached the pdf of the data that I have collected.
It's interesting that the video of Elder Holland just surfaced claiming double-digit stake creations per week. The increase in units for the year was 395 (7.6 per week).
LDS Church Membership 2008-2015.pdf