Ally Isom said Mormons will find better solutions and personal transformation if they reject contention when engaging with people of different viewpoints: "Can we not see the people and resist the poles?" she asked.
Ally Isom is no Pollyanna about the public arena. She has had the thickness of her skin tested as a television reporter, a spokeswoman for the LDS Church and deputy chief of staff for Utah's governor.
So she is realistic about how overwhelming it can be to defend religious beliefs when cutting voices are peddling polarization. Even so, Isom suggested Thursday that Mormons should do more than just engage with opponents and critics. She encouraged them to tackle tough issues without contention.
"We cannot privately pray in our chapels and homes for the healing of divisions and unity in our hearts, and then publicly berate those whose ideas or practices differ from ours," Isom said at the 18th annual FairMormon conference. "Our covenant duty is to resist pride and offense."