This site is dedicated to a group of imaginary Mormon saints. Though they don’t officially exist, they do embody elements of my experiences within and now outside of official Mormon or “Latter-day Saint” culture. My hope is that this site will give voice and expression to some of the unspoken traditions and expectations within Mormon culture – especially with regard to women.
I was born into the Mormon church, progeny of plains-crossing polygamist ancestors, served a mission in my twenties, married a man in the temple and gave birth to a wonderful daughter, then fell in love with a woman in my congregation, was excommunicated, and have lived for over fifteen years as an ex-Mormon. It is much easier to take the girl out of Utah than to take the Utah out of the girl. I have been using artwork and written expression to examine, expunge, and embrace elements of my birth culture.
In a religion and culture where everyone is considered a “saint” (hence the name Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints), creation of these imaginary saints, patterned after saints in other religions, particularly Catholicism, and the existence of this website could be considered inappropriate or even blasphemous. For me, the hope is to create new avenues for thoughtful discussion.
In upcoming weeks, you can revisit the site to meet some of these Unauthorized Saints and learn about their imaginary lives and saintly duties. Like Catholic saints, each Unauthorized Saint is referred to by their first name, place of birth, and saintly calling, for example “St. Joyce of Nephi, Saint of Potlucks and Celebrations” or “St. Helen of Ephraim, Saint of Home-Baked Goods”.
I hope you will return and enjoy this sometimes playful, sometimes probing exploration of Mormon culture.