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Benjamin Knoll

Controversial Mormon book pulled from publication

By Jana Riess — September 8, 2020

(RN) — Last month, the BYU Religious Studies Center halted publication of ‘Saving Faith’ because of author John Gee’s statements about homosexuality and child sexual abuse. But the book’s problems run even deeper.

This is your brain on Mormon Facebook

By Jana Riess — September 18, 2019

Racially, religiously, and educationally, the small subset of former Mormons who are now involved in ex-Mormon social media groups are not representative of the whole.

Calling former Mormons to participate in research study

By Jana Riess — September 7, 2019

Former members of the LDS Church who are over 18 may be eligible to be interviewed about their experiences in leaving Mormonism.

Did the 2015 Mormon LGBT exclusion policy drive a mass exodus out of the Church?

By Jana Riess — May 29, 2019

Data shows that the 2015 Mormon LGBT exclusion policy was not enough by itself to drive many out of the LDS Church, but it contributed to disillusionment.

So Cal conference this weekend on Mormon Millennials

By Jana Riess — April 25, 2019

Scholars, journalists, and data crunchers are meeting in Claremont, CA on Saturday to discuss what’s happening with Mormon Millennials.

4 myths about ex-Mormons

By Jana Riess — February 12, 2019

Most didn’t leave because they got offended, became atheists, or wanted to join another religion. Also, the vast majority of former Mormons say they’re happy after leaving.

10 ways Utah Mormons are a breed apart

By Jana Riess — January 11, 2019

Is there really such a thing as a “Utah effect” in American Mormonism?

High-profile excommunications may harm Mormon retention rates in the long run

By Jana Riess — November 30, 2018

Several recent Mormon excommunications prompt the question: what good do they serve the religious community? New survey data suggests they may chill the enthusiasm of the folks in the pews.

How many Mormons use marijuana, anyway?

By Jana Riess — September 20, 2018

With attention focused on the LDS Church’s opposition to Proposition 2 in Utah, it’s worth asking: How do Mormons feel about marijuana, and how many of them use it?

The Mormon kids are all right

By Jana Riess — September 7, 2018

Yes, Mormon Millennials are leaving the LDS Church at higher rates than previous generations. But there’s also a lot of reason for hope.

Which Mormon practices lead to increased spiritual experiences?

By Jana Riess — August 16, 2018

It turns out that prayer and scripture study do in fact seem to help Mormons feel closer to God. Avoiding coffee and Game of Thrones? Not so much.

It’s good for girls to have clergywomen, study shows

By Jana Riess — July 17, 2018

What effect do clergywomen have on girls? A great one, it turns out: women who grew up with female clergy as role models do better psychologically and educationally than those who did not.

New research shows that women’s ordination boosts trust and commitment among some American worshippers

By Jana Riess — June 29, 2018

Women’s ordination has an effect on women in the pews, a new national study finds. Congregations that give women the potential of gender equality in leadership can increase women’s trust in, and commitment to, their religious communities.

For many former Mormons, it’s hard to be “spiritual but not religious”

By Jana Riess — April 21, 2018

Former Mormons don’t generally maintain a high level of spirituality when they decide to leave the fold, unless they become actively involved in another religion.

Who’s not watching Mormon General Conference

By Jana Riess — November 7, 2017

The typical Mormon General Conference viewer is a church-going, older, white, college-educated Republican living in Utah—not surprisingly the exact type of person most likely to be seen on the TV screen during Conference sessions.

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