Two weekends ago, I went to Biola University (Bible Institute of Los Angeles) with some friends for an interfaith Mormon/Evangelical dialogue and conference. It was pretty cool. They had some scholars, both LDS and Evangelical, speak. I definitely learned a lot about Evangelicals and why we’ve always had a rocky history with them. One thing one speaker said really made sense: Evangelicals focus a lot on how the Bible makes rational sense, whereas Mormons focus more on personal experience with the Holy Ghost, and this is the biggest obstacle to overcome on both sides. However, apparently there’s this move from modernism to post-modernism among Evangelicals where more people want to rely on the Holy Ghost. Pretty interesting stuff. I’ve been going to some local interfaith dialogues with some friends in Provo, too. I think being able to explain your beliefs and why you believe them to someone else is really good for reinforcing them in your mind. I’m kind of also realizing how much I still need to know before I go on a mission. The dialogues were a little intimidating; sitting at a table with people whose nametages read "Biola," "Fuller Theological Seminary," and "Wheaton College" was definitely a wake up for me to know and understand as much LDS Theology as possible.
I have an interview on the 9th to be an EFY counselor in San Antonio. I'm way excited for that, and I hope I do well enough for them to want me. I remember EFY being a really good experience for me, and I want to help other kids have a good experience, too. Who knows, maybe I'll have some misfit 17-year-old in my group who listens to weird music and doesn't really care about school, and I can help her realize that you CAN be yourself AND be follower of Christ. I did it, so anyone can.
I've been working on a paper that I'm submiting to BYU's Religious Education Student Symposium. I wrote it last semester in my Mormon Women's History class, and I've been adding to and editing it for submission. It's on the influence of the Relief Society Magazine on the standardization of LDS Female Culture. Should you ever find yourself in Periodicals in the BYU library, look through issues of the RS Magazine. It's such a trip.
One and a half more weeks of school left. Today's my last official day of Thanksgiving break, and I'm a little overwhelmed with everything I have to get done (4 philosophy classes=papers from heck), but I'm excited to go home for Christmas.