img_4069-1Review of Lynn K. Wilder, Unveiling Grace: The Story of How We Found Our Way Out of the Mormon Church. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2013. 367 pp. $15.99

have always been intrigued with the accounts individuals give of their previous faiths and it does not take one long whilst searching the word “religion” in any online resource to find them. Whether one’s transition takes them out of Christianity, Secularism, Islam, Buddhism, Scientology, or any other worldview, the accounts given are often strikingly similar when the experience was a difficult or negative one. The theme of escaping, of going clear, or breaking away usually casts the individual in question as a type of spiritual refugee whose faith journey has left them alienated, critical of, and a survivor of a belief system that held them captive for so long. Unveiling Grace by Dr. Lynn K. Wilder, a previous Latter-day Saint of some thirty years and a BYU professor for around half that, is no different in portraying the journey her and her family experienced as they came out of Mormonism and found new faith in Evangelical Protestant Christianity.

While Lynn includes captivating imagery and provocative storytelling in her narrative, unfortunately in matters of objectivity, scriptural exegesis, rational analysis, and an accurate representation of Mormonism, her account all too often demonstrates its less-than-boasted capacity to provide an informational and honest approach to her former faith. The following critique, though meant in the kindest and best of spirits, will highlight, elaborate on or else deconstruct the manifold areas I consider to be of interest in her work whether due to matters of inaccuracy, lapses in reasoning, or even -and yes it’s possible- mutual agreement! Through these efforts, I hope to offer an alternative perspective and contradictory viewpoint, and otherwise follow a similar mission of the author, by ultimately unveiling Unveiling Grace.

Dr. Lynn Wilder, Micah Wilder and Adam’s Road Ministry

Before I begin the unpacking of my thoughts and feelings towards Unveiling Grace it is extremely necessary to correctly define and state my view towards Dr. Wilder, Micah Wilder (her son of whom initiated their family’s journey), her family and Adam’s Road Ministry. In short, I like them. Lynn, Micah and the members of Adam’s Road (the musical ministry he organized as part of their loving outreach to Mormons) have all been nothing but kind towards myself in all of our personal interactions, whether face-to-face or online. Lynn was generous and gracious enough to send me a free copy of Unveiling Grace, as part of a larger care package containing CD’s from Adam’s Road, several of their iconic “Jesus is Enough” bracelets and a copy of her and her husband’s brief work, 7 Reasons We Left Mormonism: Quick Guide to Doctrinal Differences Between Mormonism and the Biblical Word of God, which will be dissected in a later post.

It was October 10th, 2016 when I got to attend a worship and testimony service held by Adam’s Road Ministry at Christ’s Greenfield Lutheran Church here in Gilbert, AZ. The group had been conducting a multi-week tour across the nation as part of their outreach efforts. Their service consisted of several live performances of their own music as well as their personal stories of coming from Mormonism to what they and Lynn refer to as Biblical Christianity, though for clarity’s sake -as we both consider our faith to be biblically supported- I will refer to as either Evangelical, Born-Again, or Protestant Christianity.

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