This session, Religion and Global Good: At Work in God's World, is part of a larger conference that looks at the challenge and promise of dialogue between two religious traditions whose historical intersections have at times been characterized by misunderstanding and even condemnation: Mormonism and Protestant Christianity. Despite a strong historical connection in nineteenth century America, and a commonly claimed commitment to the moral teachings and saving power of Jesus, differences in doctrine and practice have complicated the relationship between Mormonism and Protestant Christianity. As both Latter-day Saints and Protestants move forward into the twenty-first century, they stand more ready than ever to engage in thoughtful dialogue and social collaboration."
Frances S. Adeney joined the Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary faculty in 1999. As a professor of evangelism and global mission, she specializes in issues of Christianity and culture, and more specifically, the place of religion in the social world and the implications for ethics in the interactions between religion and society. She believes that one issue facing the church and society today is mission.
Warner P. Woodworth is a professor in the Department of Organizations Leadership and Strategy in the Marriott School of Management at Brigham Young University (BYU). He is a leading advocate of development of micro-credit and has been involved in researching as well as developing such programs.
Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or of a sect closely related to it (e.g., the Community of Christ). The Mormon religion was founded by Joseph Smith, who claimed to have received an angelic vision telling him of the location of golden plates containing God's revelation; this he published in 1830 as the Book of Mormon. Smith and his followers accepted the Bible as well as the Mormon sacred scriptures but diverged significantly from orthodox Christianity, especially in their assertion that God exists in three distinct entities as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Mormons also believe that faithful members of the church will inherit eternal life as gods. Other unique doctrines include the belief in preexisting souls waiting to be born and in salvation of the dead through retroactive baptism. The church became notorious for its practice of polygamy, though it was officially sanctioned only between 1852 and 1890. Smith and his followers migrated from Palmyra, N.Y., to Ohio, Missouri, and finally Illinois, where Smith was killed by a mob in 1844. In 184647, under Brigham Young, the Mormons made a 1,100-mi (1,800-km) trek to Utah, where they founded Salt Lake City. In the early 21st century, the church had a worldwide membership of nearly 10 million, swelled yearly by the missionary work that church members, both men and women, are encouraged to perform.