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Rare honor: Female BYU prof to run Mormon institute

First Published      Last Updated Mar 25 2014 11:46 am

The LDS Church has named Barbara Morgan to head its LDS Institute of Religion in Cambridge, Mass.

Women rarely oversee Mormon institutes of religion, and Morgan's selection is believed to be highest-profile appointment to such a job for an LDS woman .

Morgan will take a year leave of absence from her position in the religion department at Brigham Young University before taking over in September in Massachusetts, according to a statement on BYU's Religious Studies Facebook page.

"She will be teaching institute classes, serving on the Harvard Interfaith Council, and being the religious adviser (chaplain) for LDS students at Harvard, MIT, Wellesley and other universities and colleges in the Boston area," the statement said.

Morgan, who has a doctorate in instructional psychology, is not married and has no children — as is required for women within the Church Educational System.

"Church policy precludes women with children in the home from teaching seminary or institute full time," says LDS Church spokesman Cody Craynor.

Peggy Fletcher Stack