05 May 2009

on sunday

An essay of mine appears in this new collection ON SUNDAY:


What is it like to go to church in prison, or in an Islamic country, or in Africa, Australia, or Asia? We say that the Church is the same wherever you go, but how is the experience of LDS worship different throughout the world?

Mormon Artists Group is pleased to announce the publication of

On Sunday

As part of Mormon Artists Group’s tenth anniversary, we invited authors around the world merely to go to church and write down what they experienced on a Sunday.

We were curious to know what their buildings looked like, how people arrived at church, who were the members, what they did for a living, what they looked like, how they treated each other, what they talked about, what worried them, what inspired them, how they sang, how they worshipped: what went on.

Our authors wrote from their home congregations in Singapore, Australia, Angola, Kuwait, Brazil, and throughout North America, from Harlem to Seattle. There are eleven essays altogether, accompanied by photographs of the church buildings taken by the authors. For the most part, the episodes in the book occurred on a single, ordinary Sunday, March 1, 2009.

Buildings, above, in Angola, Seattle, Harlem, Brazil.

The Authors

The authors of On Sunday are Adam Anderson, Stephen Bennett, Claudia Bushman, Harriet Petherick Bushman, Lara Candland, Mario V. L. Cardoso, Glenn Gordon, Stanley Hainsworth, Thomas Holst, Glen Nelson, and Astrid S. Tuminez.

Each of the essays is a journalistic snapshot. Some of these stories come from turbulent landscapes: the aftermath of civil war in Angola, a raging wildfire in Australia, expatriates living far from home and family in Kuwait and Singapore. There is economic turmoil everywhere as well as the issue of equality of race and gender.

Tough individual choices are faced: will a mother risk arrest to take her children to a Christian church in an Islamic country, should a woman leave her husband and children in the Phillipines to work and send money back home, can forgiveness come to those in prison, can we care for those around us in need?
Flowing through the writings is a undercurrent of hope and a declaration that the social communities of LDS worship—whether the members gather to eat Jell-O, collard greens, or camel—work miraculously, joyously well.

The stories are of common people. A Brazilian native tells of his first Sunday as a missionary, a Provo author writes about the uneasy pull of utopia, a Californian describes a wealthy community in transition, a visitor to Harlem tries to put race in perspective, men in Mesa and Seattle compare their current, suburban lives with their former congregations in Japan, Denmark, New York, and Mexico. Together, the essays form a composite of real LDS life on a global scale.

The Church is the same everywhere you go. That is what we say. To us, it means that wherever one goes in the world, stepping into an LDS church house is a welcome and familiar act, a good thing.

The Church has thirteen million members at present, the majority of whom live outside of the USA. The eleven authors of this book don’t speak for the world, but their voices offer a hint of what the world of our Church is like and how we are alike (or not) right now.

Buildings, above, in Mesa, Chicago, Pasadena, Provo.

The Volume

Mormon Artists Group presents On Sunday in two formats: a limited edition volume and a digital PDF file edition.
On Sunday – PDF edition - $5
On Sunday – Limited edition - $100

To Order

The limited edition is printed and bound by hand over boards with linen tapes, silk headbands, and with an embroidered cover image in thread on natural Irish linen. The image, a hendecagram, is an 11-pointed figure that represents the eleven congregations described in the book. The volume is 9.5” x 6.25”, 166 pages, printed on Mohawk Superfine paper with Fabriano Tiziano endpapers.

The digital edition is a PDF file of the complete volume, sent as an email attachment. It is an experiment to determine whether Mormon Artists Group can distribute volumes with extreme speed and cost-efficiency to the reader with payments via PayPal, cash or check.

On Sunday – PDF edition - $5

On Sunday – Limited edition - $100

To purchase, reply to this email, and we'll assist you.

Mormon Artists Group
457 West 57th Street #601
New York, New York 10019 USA
PayPal account: mgknelson
Telephone: 212-586-7826


eliza.e.campbell said...

Dude! This is cool! I think I'm going to be in that issue too. I want to read your essay. Can I have an advance copy?

Marni C. said...

Go Lara.