Faith, Leadership, and Artistic License: Under the Banner of Heaven

Published on: 14th July, 2022

Under the Banner of Heaven is a true-crime series based on a book, about the murder of a young Mormon woman, Brenda Lafferty (Daisy Edgar Jones), and her young daughter and the subsequent investigation of that murder. The show's creator is an ex-Mormon, Dustin Lance Black. And he invents a character, a police detective, Jeb Pyre (Andrew Garfield), who is also a Mormon. And Jeb's investigation of this case starts interacting with his faith, it brings up larger questions about religious faith and faithfulness as it faces evil, hypocrisy, and the ugliest truths. Can it survive? How does media tend to get these kind of pictures right, bring up the right kinds of questions? And what does it often miss?

Today we welcome Dr. Patrick Q. Mason. Patrick holds the Leonard J. Arrington Chair of Mormon History and Culture at Utah State University. He is the author of several books including Mormonism and Violence: The Battles of Zion; The Mormon Menace: Violence and Anti-Mormonism in the Postbellum South; and Proclaim Peace: The Restoration's Answer to an Age of Conflict. He was a Fulbright Scholar and is a past president of the Mormon History Association. Patrick is frequently consulted by the media on stories related to Mormon culture and history and is himself a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Now put on your sunglasses and sunblock, because we're headed to Utah, and into the heart of some tough questions about what it means to be a person of faith, not just as a Mormon in the 1980s, but as a Christian in our world today. We hope you enjoy the conversation.

Check out Patrick's books.

Visit TLC's blog, Covenant.

View TLC's new books!

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The Living Church Podcast
The Living Church Podcast explores ecumenical topics in theology, the arts, ethics, pastoral care, and spiritual growth — all to equip and encourage leaders in the Episcopal Church, Anglican Communion, and beyond. A ministry of the Living Church Institute.