Over the summer I was so blessed to have Sunstone and Exponent II sponsor the exhibit I put together featuring essays and heirlooms from Mormon women. Now I am doubly or triply or quadruply blessed to have Exponent II publishing those essays and heirlooms plus a few more in book form! It’s a wonderful bit of women’s history and features such women as Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, Margaret Toscano, Jana Reiss, many Exponent II women, and others writing about items they have inherited from their female ancestors. Perhaps I’m biased, but I found the essays uniformly touching. They get at the heart of women’s relationships by exploring their material connections across generations. It’s a historical project upon which I hope others will be modeled, documenting the legacies of women who shape lives in thousands of acts every day.
Habits of Being: Mormon Women’s Material Culture is the first book Exponent II has produced in thirty years, and all proceeds will help to print the books and support the organization, which, let’s be honest, Mormon feminists couldn’t do without!
So, please order a copy (you get a 15% discount until March 31) and please subscribe to the magazine! The books will be out in time for Mother’s Day and would make a very nice gift indeed.
And, consider contributing to the series. Submissions are open for the third volume, covering women born between 1846 and 1870. Hip hip hurrah for what promises to be the beginning of a monumental contribution to women’s history and LDS church history. I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy.
Last week I met a friend for dinner. Our conversation was lovely and lively and deep, as it always is. At some point we landed on the topic of faith versus works and the very specific set of works in Mormonism that comprise the ordinances of salvation. Having just read Ephesians 2, I pulled out my phone to quote from it. I read verses 8, 9, and 10 across our noodles:
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”
I talked about Christ creating us unto good works and about those works being emblematic of our walk of faith in Christ. Incidentally, one of the waiters approached the table and said he had worked there for two months and had never heard anyone quote Ephesians 2 (he could possibly work there many more months and never hear it quoted) and that it was awesome and that that was all. A few minutes later he walked by again and said, “It is a walk of faith. People don’t know that. People in churches.” I wanted to ask him if he was a Christian, but the opportunity passed too quickly. It was a moment of witnessing together that was special, and I am glad I could be a part of it. Continue reading