“Mormon Faith Crisis” is the inautural project for the Center for Religious and Secular Progress in 2018. The purpose will be to create a comprehensive online support guide and set of resources for Mormons in faith crisis.
The overall message of the project will be that a Mormon faith crisis, while usually extremely challenging and painful, can become an incredibly positive opportunity/gift for growth and fulfillment if managed thoughtfully. (John’s favorite code name for the project is “The Gift of the Mormon Faith Crisis“)
The project (as currently planned) will consist of the following:
- An online directory outlining the most common challenges that face Mormons in faith crisis (http://www.mormonfaithcrisis.com/outline/)
- A series of blog posts attempting to address each topic, possibly accompanied by short Youtube videos.
- In-depth interviews with Mormon individuals and families who have experienced faith crises – with an emphasis on lessons learned through their experiences.
- A private Facebook community, providing targeted support for Mormons in faith crisis.
- Monthly workshops and/or retreats in various cities around the U.S./world to provide direct support to Mormons in faith crisis.
- A carefully curated directory of mental health therapists and coaches to support Mormons in faith crisis.
- A university-sponsored research project around supporting Mormons in faith crisis.
- We are hopeful that all of these efforts will culminate in a book supporting Mormons in faith crisis.
The current collaborators for this project are myself, Margi Dehlin, and Natasha Helfer Parker. Some of the key areas of special interest will be the following:
- Strengthening marriages, families, and other relationships during and after a faith transition.
- Supporting mixed-faith marriages and mixed-faith families.
- Preventing unnecessary divorces and family strife due to religious differences.
- Raising healthy children after a faith transition.
- Communicating in healthy ways with orthodox/believing family and friends.
- Finding meaningful friendships and community after a faith transition.
- Nurturing spirituality (even secular spirituality) after a faith transition.
- Personal healing and growth after a faith transition. This usually entails replacing the “holes” that develop after a faith transition, including: Identity, Purpose, Meaning, Morality, Spirituality, Health Code, Community, etc.
- Leaving or Staying LDS. Leaving: For those who are choosing to leave the LDS Church, helping you make that transition in the healthiest possible way. Staying: For those who are choosing to stay active in the LDS Church, helping you do so in a rich, vibrant, edifying, healthy way.
Feedback for this project should be directed to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
John Dehlin has a Ph.D. in clinical/counseling psychology from Utah State University. He is the founder of Mormon Stories podcast, and CEO of the Open Stories Foundation. John’s research and coaching interests center around the nexus of religion and mental health. He specializes in the following areas:
- Navigating a religious faith crisis.
- Navigating marriage during a religious faith crisis.
- Mixed-faith marriages.
- Managing mental health during and after a faith crisis.
- Scrupulosity (religious OCD).
- LGBT issues.
John’s research publications can be found here.
John’s private practice can be found here.
Margi Dehlin is beginning a life coaching practice after years of participating in private events and couples sessions in partnership with John. She specializes in faith crisis work for the individual, along with marital and family relationships. Margi has a background in personal training and enjoys talking about health and well-being, organization, and lifestyle management. She is currently working on a life coaching certification program through Life Purpose Institute, an accredited coaching program.
Margi’s blog and coaching practice can be found here.
Natasha Helfer Parker is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Certified Sex Therapist with 20 years experience counseling individuals, couples, and families. She specializes in, working with those who come from Mormon or other religious backgrounds. Areas of expertise includes working within the intersections of faith, life transitions and sexuality.