Sparks tend to fly when Evangelicals and members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints discuss religion, but on June 8, Evangelical Pastor Dr. Steven Crane and BYU professor and LDS author Dr. Brad Wilcox will sit down for a new kind of conversation.

The event, “An Evangelical-Mormon Conversation” will be held on June 8, from 7-9 p.m. at the Idaho Falls Civic Auditorium. Crane and Wilcox will discuss topics such as God, Jesus, scripture, the Atonement, heaven and hell, the Fall and salvation. “We have agreed that our purpose would be to promote healthy dialogue and discussion between Evangelicals and Mormons, to model proper conversations, and to bring clarity to the issues—in an attempt to learn what we each actually believe,” Crane said. “We are not interested in arguing or debating, but having a genuine, loving conversation about the unique aspects of our respective faiths.” The event is being hosted by Christ Community Church in Idaho Falls.

CHRIST COMMUNITY CHURCH | Courtesy Photo

“We are praying that this will be a comfortable setting for our LDS neighbors, a time to listen together concerning matters of utmost importance to both of us—our respective faiths,” said Pastor Jeff Kennedy of Christ Community Church in a letter. “We are not looking for ‘gotcha’ moments or for a ‘winner.’ We are hoping and praying, rather, for enlarged respect and understanding.”

Crane is the senior minister at Eagle Christian Church. He received a Master of Arts in Practical Ministry from Pacific Christian College and a Master of Divinity in Theology from Lincoln Christian Seminary. He received his Doctorate from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in 2007, according to Eagle Christian Church’s website.

Crane also teaches part-time at Boise Bible College.

Wilcox is a professor in the Department of Ancient Scripture at BYU. He authored such books as, “Changed Through His Grace,” and “The Continuous Atonement,” according to bradwilcox.com.

Wilcox served a two-year LDS mission in Chile. While he mostly grew up in Utah he spent some of his childhood living in Ethiopia, Africa. He and his family have spent time in New Zealand and Spain where he directed study abroad programs for BYU.

BRADWILCOX.COM | Courtesy Photo