Welcome, dear, readers, to the Spring 2020 issue of SquareTwo! What an interesting time to be publishing this issue, during the Covid-19 pandemic emergency. We are pleased to bring you some outstanding material to read if you happen to be stuck at home!

First, V.H. Cassler blasts the 2020 Utah state legislature for their de facto decriminalization of polygamy. Why is this legislative move such a bad idea, according to Cassler, and what confluence of forces might have brought it forward at this time? Indeed, our new Readers’ Puzzle for the Spring 2020 issue asks our readers for their opinion on this recent legislative change in the state of Utah. We are eager to hear from you on this controversial issue.

Second, in this issue we begin a serialization of an exchange between Stephen Webb, a well-known and very thoughtful Roman Catholic thinker, and Charles Randall Paul, on the materiality of the divine. We start with an introduction by editorial board member Ralph Hancock setting the stage for the dialogue, and then begin with the first part of Paul’s review of one of Webb’s books on the subject. We’ll complete the publishing of that review in subsequent issues of SquareTwo, and then publish Webb’s response to Paul’s review as the final installment.

Third, Emily Powers resurrects the historical fact of female deaconesses in the primitive church, and discusses changes in that practice over the first several centuries after the death of Christ. She also reminds us of the early Church of Jesus Christ position of deaconess, and reflects on current church roles of women in the light of these earlier practices.

Fourth, Emilee Bell pens a remarkable essay on her change in viewpoint concerning the use of the term “harlots” and “mother of harlots” in this essay. Do these terms really indicate women? Or is something deeper there, for those who have eyes to see?

Fifth, our book review editor B. Kent Harrison reviews Melissa Inouye’s thoughtful volume, Crossings, and finds himself grateful to have picked it up. Inouye’s unique voice and unique perspective is a treat for readers from all walks of life, with ruminations about cross-cultural understanding, coping with the thorniness of Church history, and reflections on life and death.

Sixth, V.H. Cassler reviews Melissa Wheelwright Brown’s new book, Eve and Adam: Discovering the Beautiful Balance, finding it well-written, well-sourced, and well-said. Brown rightly asserts that the key to understanding the story of the Garden of Eden is to fully understand the Great Plan of Happiness. This is an important new book for those seeking insight on the courage and wisdom of our foremother Eve.

Seventh, V.H. Cassler reviews A Girl’s Guide to Heavenly Mother by MacArthur Krishna and Bethany Brady Spalding, the duo who previously gave us the Girls Who Choose God series. Since we know so little about Heavenly Mother, what would a book about Her say? Take a peek in this review.

Eighth, we have several reflective responses to our Fall 2019 Readers’ Puzzle on Church artwork. Does it stand in the way of spiritual understanding for that art to be as Western-centric as it has traditionally been? See what our readers and editorial board members think.

Finally, we update Chad Emmett’s article on Church teachings on female genital cutting, noting that for the very first time, the practice is mentioned in the Church Handbook. Check it out!


Full Citation for this Article: Editorial Board, SquareTwo Journal (2020) "Editors’ Intro, Spring 2020," SquareTwo, Vol. 13 No. 1 (Spring 2020), http://squaretwo.org/EditorsIntroSpring2020.html, accessed <give access date>.

Would you like to comment on this article? Thoughtful, faithful comments of at least 100 words are welcome. Please submit to SquareTwo.

COMMENTS: 0 Comments