‘Mormon Land’: After a rough week, where does BYU sit now and where is it headed?

Can the LDS Church’s flagship school remain in the mainstream and successfully navigate the waters of “being in the world but not of the world”?

(Leah Hogsten | The Salt Lake Tribune) The Abraham Smoot Building, shown in 2019, on the campus of Brigham Young University.

An administrator at Brigham Young University removes thousands of LGBTQ resource pamphlets from welcome bags intended to go to new students. Faculty and staff recoil as the school adds language explicitly requiring new hires to waive clergy confidentiality on matters related to employment standards. And, finally, an investigation continues after reports that a Cougar fan repeatedly hurled racist slurs at a visiting Duke volleyball player, igniting a media firestorm.

The flagship university of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has found itself at the center of a number of unwelcome headlines in recent days — surrounding topics ranging from race and LGBTQ issues to religious freedom — prompting many to ask: What’s going on in Provo? How has this spate of news affected BYU’s reputation? Are these isolated occurrences or part of a larger movement? If the latter, who or what is driving this trend? And what might be the ultimate aim?

Address those questions and more on this week’s show are Patrick Mason, a BYU alum and chair of Mormon history and culture at Utah State University, and LaShawn Williams, a Duke graduate and faculty member in social work at Salt Lake Community College.

Listen here:

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