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Excommunication Hot Topic at Sunstone Symposium

Dan Bammes
Sunstone Symposium Director Mary Ellen Robertson

  The annual Sunstone Symposium starts Wednesday, bringing together scholars and others interested in current issues in Mormonism.  There’s one issue in particular drawing much of the attention this year.

The symposium plans several sessions on the excommunication of Ordain Women founder Kate Kelly.  They’ll include a look at how the practice of excommunication has evolved through Mormon history and the personal experiences of some who lost their official membership in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints years ago.

Symposium director Mary Ellen Robertson says there’s a lot of interest in the topic, though there are many other issues on the agenda.

Robertson tells KUER, “That’s one of the things that we’re able to do here at the Sunstone Symposium, is create a forum where people can have the difficult conversations, tackle the sticky issues in Mormonism and culture and things that are currently happening in the community.”

Robertson says interest in the question of ordaining women to the Mormon priesthood is also helping to draw broader interest from news media outside Utah and the L-D-S community.

About 700 people are expected to attend the sessions being held in the Union building at the University of Utah.  More information is available at

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