FRIDAY | MARCH 2, 2018 | 7:30-9:30 pm
Why did a Southern Baptist pastor and critic of the LDS Church, eventually join the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints? Bryan spent most of his life studying the history and doctrine of the LDS Church,believing that Joseph Smith was a false prophet and that Mormons were not Christians. Join us as we discuss Bryan’s perspective on the Church’s faith and history as well as your questions and faith journey’s.
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1194 S. 500 E., SLC, UT
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“It just wouldn’t leave me alone.” That is the answer Bryan usually gave when asked why he became member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. For Bryan, it wasn’t about a search for truth or a powerful testimony. It was about a pull that wouldn’t go away. But even though he felt drawn to the Church, there were several barriers he had to overcome to join. Could Joseph Smith really be a prophet? Did God want me to stop being a pastor? Would I have to surrender or modify any of the theological convictions that were important to me? (Mormons often say, you don’t have to give up anything. Bring what you have and we’ll add to it. Bryan had to find out if that were true.) How would he support his family? Would his family even support his decision? On top of all this, Bryan was just emerging from about a 10-year period in which he really struggled with faith and what it meant to believe. He asked what role (if any) was this struggle playing in his journey towards Mormonism? Come join us as we discuss the answers Bryan found to these questions. We invite you to join this discussion with your own questions….and answers as well.
Bryan E. Ready was a Southern Baptist minister for 25 years. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Religion from Union University, a Baptist university in Jackson,TN. He earned a Masters of Divinity and a Masters of Theology from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY. He started studying the LDS faith and history as a hobby when he was 15-years-old. 32 years later he joined the LDS church in June of 2016. He currently attends the Alton, IL Ward (Hazelwood, MO Stake).
STUFF TO STUDY:
- Bryan’s story in one of the 15 in this book: Converted: True Conversion Stories from 15 Religions
- An on and off again blog by Bryan
- William H. Whitsitt: Insights into Early Mormonism (Bryan’s 2001 Th.M. thesis—five years prior to joining the LDS church)
AUDIO RECORDING OF OUR EVENING WITH BRYAN:
As is so often the case, this was a fantastic evening. Great presentation, participants, questions, and discussion. Bryan is a good soul with some very unique and interesting takes on why he joined the LDS faith and how he navigates areas that are still murky for him. Very much worth listening too.
Thanks to past Faith Again Discussion leader, Shon Hopkin for connecting me with Bryan. And thanks to Tom Gleason for inviting Tierra Custer to begin our conversation with a gorgeous solo. Both Tom and Tierra are part of the Debra Bonner Unity Gospel Choir (formerly the LDS Genesis Gospel Choir). This choir has been the main attraction of the Genesis group for some years now.
Bryan has said several times to me and to the group that he is happy to converse with people. His email is: firstname.lastname@example.org