Shared Values Statement

  1. We acknowledge the richness of Mormon heritage, teachings, and community in all of its diversity.
  2. We believe that one can self-identify as Mormon based on one’s genealogy, upbringing, beliefs, relationships, and other life experiences, regardless of one’s adherence or non-adherence to the teachings or doctrines of any religious organization.
  3. We seek spaces where we as Mormons can live lives of intellectual and spiritual integrity, individual conscience, and personal dignity.
  4. We acknowledge and honor different spiritual paths and modes of religious or non-religious truth-seeking. We respect the convictions of those who subscribe to ideas and beliefs that differ from our own.
  5. We recognize the confusion, distress, emotional trauma, and social ostracism that people on faith journeys often experience. We seek constructive ways of helping and supporting people, regardless of their ultimate decisions regarding church affiliation or activity.
  6. We affirm the inherent and equal worth of all human beings. We seek spaces where Mormons (and all people) can interact as equals regardless of race, gender, or sexual orientation. In this spirit of egalitarianism, we prefer non-authoritarian and non-hierarchical means of organization and affiliation.

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History of the Mormon Stories Shared Values Statement

The Mormon Stories Shared Values Statement was first read at the inaugural Salt Lake City Mormon Stories conference on June 18, 2011. It was originally drafted by a private internet community and then revised by a small group of writers in an email thread. After its initial release, Mormon Stories sought feedback from the community at large. Two subsequent revisions were made in an attempt to ensure the statement reflects the values of the community as a whole. A record of the revision process can be found below.
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June 25, 2011 – Shared Values Statement as it was read at the Salt Lake Conference

As we’ve received a lot of requests, here’s a written copy of the Shared Values Statement that we read at the SLC conference. Thanks for your interest. The statement was written in an attempt to articulate what we think the 2011 open Mormon internet community can agree upon right now. Since the online community tends to disagree on much and agree on little, writing out the values we share in common was a daunting task. We’re figuring, then, that there’s a lot of room for improvement. Please see this statement as nothing more than a draft that is open for discussion.

Thanks, The Open Stories Foundation

  1. We choose to self-identify as Mormons. We claim this identity based on our genealogies, upbringings, beliefs, relationships, and other life experiences.
  2. We believe that one can be Mormon or claim a Mormon identity without necessarily adhering to the teachings or doctrines of any religious organization.
  3. We celebrate the richness of Mormon heritage, teachings, and community in all of its diversity.
    We seek spaces where we as Mormons can live lives of intellectual and spiritual integrity, individual conscience, and personal dignity.
  4. We acknowledge and honor different spiritual paths and modes of religious or non-religious truth-seeking. We respect the convictions of those who subscribe to ideas and beliefs that differ from our own.
  5. We recognize the confusion, distress, emotional trauma, and social ostracism that often accompany personal faith crises. We seek constructive ways of helping and supporting those experiencing such crises, regardless of their ultimate decisions regarding church affiliation or activity.
  6. We affirm the inherent and equal worth of all human beings. We seek spaces where Mormons (and all people) can interact as equals regardless of race, gender, or sexual orientation. In this spirit of egalitarianism, we prefer non-authoritarian and non-hierarchical means of organization and affiliation.

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July 20, 2011 – Revision 1

Thanks to all who took the time to discuss our Shared Values Statement. The following revision is our best attempt to synthesize the disparate feedback you shared. While we acknowledge that were unable to utilize everyone’s ideas, we want to be clear that all feedback is important to us and that we worked to address the concerns that were brought to our attention. As our intent is to make periodic revisions as necessary, please feel free to continually critique the statement. Thanks again for your interest and assistance.

  1. We claim the right to self-identify as Mormons if we so choose. We may claim this identity based on our genealogies, upbringings, beliefs, relationships, and other life experiences.
  2. We believe that one can be Mormon or claim a Mormon identity without necessarily adhering to the teachings or doctrines of any religious organization.
  3. We acknowledge the richness of Mormon heritage, teachings, and community in all of its diversity.
    We seek spaces where we as Mormons can live lives of intellectual and spiritual integrity, individual conscience, and personal dignity.
  4. We acknowledge and honor different spiritual paths and modes of religious or non-religious truth-seeking. We respect the convictions of those who subscribe to ideas and beliefs that differ from our own.
  5. We recognize the confusion, distress, emotional trauma, and social ostracism that people on faith journeys often experience. We seek constructive ways of helping and supporting people, regardless of their ultimate decisions regarding church affiliation or activity.
  6. We affirm the inherent and equal worth of all human beings. We seek spaces where Mormons (and all people) can interact as equals regardless of race, gender, or sexual orientation. In this spirit of egalitarianism, we prefer non-authoritarian and non-hierarchical means of organization and affiliation.

Original Version to Revision 1 with track changes. New language is bolded:

  1. We choose claim the right to self-identify as Mormons if we so choose. We may claim this identity based on our genealogies, upbringings, beliefs, relationships, and other life experiences.
  2. We believe that one can be Mormon or claim a Mormon identity without necessarily adhering to the teachings or doctrines of any religious organization.
  3. We celebrate acknowledge the richness of Mormon heritage, teachings, and community in all of its diversity.
    We seek spaces where we as Mormons can live lives of intellectual and spiritual integrity, individual conscience, and personal dignity.
  4. We acknowledge and honor different spiritual paths and modes of religious or non-religious truth-seeking. We respect the convictions of those who subscribe to ideas and beliefs that differ from our own.
  5. We recognize the confusion, distress, emotional trauma, and social ostracism that often accompany personal people on faith journeys often experience crises. We seek constructive ways of helping and supporting those experiencing such crises people, regardless of their ultimate decisions regarding church affiliation or activity.
  6. We affirm the inherent and equal worth of all human beings. We seek spaces where Mormons (and all people) can interact as equals regardless of race, gender, or sexual orientation. In this spirit of egalitarianism, we prefer non-authoritarian and non-hierarchical means of organization and affiliation.

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October 1, 2011 – Revision 2

This revision is made as part of our continual effort to incorporate feedback that might improve the Shared Values Statement. Suggestions are always welcome. It is our hope that, through this and future revisions, the statement will continue to reflect the current values of the community.

  1. We acknowledge the richness of Mormon heritage, teachings, and community in all of its diversity.
  2. We believe that one can self-identify as Mormon based on one’s genealogy, upbringing, beliefs, relationships, and other life experiences, regardless of one’s adherence or non-adherence to the teachings or doctrines of any religious organization.
  3. We seek spaces where we as Mormons can live lives of intellectual and spiritual integrity, individual conscience, and personal dignity.
  4. We acknowledge and honor different spiritual paths and modes of religious or non-religious truth-seeking. We respect the convictions of those who subscribe to ideas and beliefs that differ from our own.
  5. We recognize the confusion, distress, emotional trauma, and social ostracism that people on faith journeys often experience. We seek constructive ways of helping and supporting people, regardless of their ultimate decisions regarding church affiliation or activity.
  6. We affirm the inherent and equal worth of all human beings. We seek spaces where Mormons (and all people) can interact as equals regardless of race, gender, or sexual orientation. In this spirit of egalitarianism, we prefer non-authoritarian and non-hierarchical means of organization and affiliation.

Revision 1 to Revision 2 with track changes. New language is bolded.

  1. We acknowledge the richness of Mormon heritage, teachings, and community in all of its diversity. (Note: this language is the former statement 3 and has been moved to statement 1 in its entirety.)
  2. We believe that one can We claim the right to self-identify as Mormons if we so choose. We may claim this identity based on one’s our genealogy ies, upbringings, beliefs, relationships, and other life experiences, We believe that one can be Mormon or claim a Mormon identity without necessarily adhering regardless of one’s adherence or non-adherence to the teachings or doctrines of any religious organization. (Note: this statement represents a partial merger of former statements one and two.)
  3. We seek spaces where we as Mormons can live lives of intellectual and spiritual integrity, individual conscience, and personal dignity.
  4. We acknowledge and honor different spiritual paths and modes of religious or non-religious truth-seeking. We respect the convictions of those who subscribe to ideas and beliefs that differ from our own.
  5. We recognize the confusion, distress, emotional trauma, and social ostracism that people on faith journeys often experience. We seek constructive ways of helping and supporting people, regardless of their ultimate decisions regarding church affiliation or activity.
  6. We affirm the inherent and equal worth of all human beings. We seek spaces where Mormons (and all people) can interact as equals regardless of race, gender, or sexual orientation. In this spirit of egalitarianism, we prefer non-authoritarian and non-hierarchical means of organization and affiliation.

 

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