Whether one is biking across America or wishing that America could better understand Mormons or even trying to assimilate back into American culture as a returned missionary, these blogs are notable, new and neat!
Mormon American: D.T. Bell and Ryan Bell join forces in the Mormon American blog in an effort, as their masthead explains, of “promoting better-informed discussions of Mormonism.” Why? Because in this new "Mormon Moment," media and other outlets are still getting things wrong: “We sort of hoped this time around might be different; after all, reporters and commentators had had four years to familiarize themselves with Mormon doctrine and culture. We were wrong. Hence, this blog, the mission of which is to politely but doggedly highlight the inaccuracies and unfair and sloppy thinking that so often characterize the national conversation on Mormonism.” Cool. This site, with its ever-changing Mormon content, should be bookmarked and visited often. Check it out!
The RMTC: After returning from their missions, elders and sisters transitioning back into American culture can experience, well, a culture shock. Run by seven different bloggers, the RMTC hopes to alleviate some of that shock with lessons covering “dating, school and work, and regaining your style,” a “stuff you missed" category that includes “current events, movies, music, sports and other ‘worldly’ things you didn’t pay attention to as a missionary” and a whole section devoted to RM stories. One of my favorite pages is the “Talks for Returned Missionaries,” which includes just that: talks from general authorities that specifically address issues facing returned missionaries. Awesome. Click in to explore the whole site.
Biking LeBarons: Say you’ve always wanted to bike across America, but just needed the right motivation — in this case, raising funds for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. That’s exactly what this brother and sister team did for 35 days, spanning April and May, and you can track their progress across the country. My advice is to start at the first blog posts and read their whole story. But if you just want to jump right into the stats of the trip — they had three emergency room visits, 2,519 total miles biked, seven flat tires and much more — then check out this post, which also outlines their favorite parts of the trip. And see how much money they donated to JDRF. Awesome use of blog technology!
In the coming week or so, I plan on featuring some more new blogs, including some with Brigham Young University connections. So check back to click in.
Now let’s find other noteworthy posts from the Bloggernacle world:
Power pick: “Tracing Your Ancestors? Thank a Mormon.” This from a non-Mormon blogger, who traces his own experience watching a popular genealogy show and how Mormons influenced the stories included. You should really just read the whole thing, but I’ll tease with his conclusion: “So if you wind up searching for your roots, you may want to send a thank you to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who are fervently working at preserving a wealth of data that can give us a sense of rootedness and meaning that is irreplaceable.”
Techie tip: Did you know that there are “LDSTech Missionaries”? Meet one of them, Elder Joshua Bangerter, in this fun little feature at LDSTech: “During the seven months he has served in the church's Riverton office building as a quality assurance assistant, Elder Bangerter has found working for the information and communication services department has brought many blessings into his life. For example, with a desire to become an electrical engineer, serving a mission within the ICS Department is helping him prepare for his career.” And he explains that “I’ve gained a testimony of technology and how the Lord directs it for the spreading of his gospel. There are so many good things about technology that are hidden by the bad, that people may think technology is evil. But I’ve found there are many ways to use technology to benefit all of God’s children in forwarding his work. Whether it’s indexing or anything else technology related, it’s become evident that technology benefits people, especially as the leaders of the church emphasize the need to learn about it and how to use it to help others.” Cool! Click to see what sort of projects he has been working on and what opportunities he has enjoyed. Plus click in to learn more about LDSTech missionaries.
Emily Warburton Jensen loves searching through the LDS blog world for developments and testimonies that best capture the ever-evolving LDS online experience. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org