New Web site helps Mormon scholars share testimonies

by | Dec. 22, 2009

What We Believe

A new Web site,, gives scholars an opportunity to set the record clear on their thoughts, feelings and testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

"There are some who may feel that people of education and learning can't be religious," the Web site states. "It is hoped that these testimonies will help dispel that myth, educate, and give insights into the thoughts and feelings of LDS scholars."

The Web site is the brainchild of Daniel C. Peterson, a professor of Islamic studies and Arabic at BYU. The site's roots are in Peterson's experiences on his mission in Europe.

The attitude of many people was that Mormons were just shallow westerners -- uneducated rubes. "Well, I may still be a rube," Peterson said with a laugh, "but I'm no longer uneducated."

When Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve gave a speech in 2007 encouraging Mormons to use the Internet to spread testimony, Peterson saw an opportunity. "I had the general feeling that we were under-utilizing the web," Peterson said.

And so, was born, with some technical help from Tanya Spackman at FAIR (the Foundation for Apologetic Information and Research).

Twelve scholars had placed their testimonies on the Web site at the time this story was written. Peterson's intention is to add one or two a week -- although many of the scholars who have expressed an interest are currently in the middle of grading papers.

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