“A Mormon and an Evangelical in Dialogue” will be the Religion Department’s forum on Nov. 1.
Robert L. Millet, professor of ancient scriptures at Brigham Young University, and the Rev. Gregory C.V. Johnson, a Baptist pastor and the president and founder of Standing Together, will be the speakers at the forum.
Standing Together is an organization that strives to promote Biblical unity and spiritual growth in Utah.
According to Standing Together’s website, “Standing Together seeks to be a catalyst for uniting the Utah Christian community through relational efforts of prayer, worship, and strategic evangelism.”
Greg Wightman, a professor of religious education at BYU-Idaho, said that the primary purpose of the forum is two-fold.
The first part is to demonstrate a civil dialogue that Christians can have with each other.
The second part is to help students better understand each religion’s point of view and discover commonalities in their beliefs.
“When it comes to religious conversations, it seems like we all have something to say but very few of us know how to listen well,” Johnson said in the video, “Is Anyone Listening?” available on Standing Together’s website.
The video was created by Millet and Johnson to explain the importance of being civil in religious discussions.
Sydney Kelly, a junior studying art, said she thought the forum was a great idea because people generally have misconceptions about each other’s faith.
“It’s easy to get offended when others accuse you of things you know you don’t believe,” Kelly said.
Johnson said Christians need to focus on building relationships of unity in Christ, instead of solely focusing on converting each other.
He also said that it was important to be willing to talk about beliefs without trying to show how the other person is incorrect.
“There are many people in this world who are very convicted; convinced of their own faith. And there are many people who are civil. But there are not many people who are both convicted and civil,” Millet said in the video “Is Anyone Listening?”
Johnson and Millet met in April of 1987 when a professor of the Denver Seminary spoke at BYU.
When they first met, Johnson said he was surprised at how many evangelical books Millet had.
Johnson said that he thought Millet would be a good person to get to know better.
After they became friends they started having conversations about religion over lunch.
They both said that it was something they enjoyed and wanted to continue, but still wanted to do more.
Millet said he felt it was his responsibility to help other members of the Latter-day Saint faith community to understand Evangelicals better.
The forum will be held from 2 to 3 p.m. and all students and faculty are invited to attend.
There will be a Q&A following.
For more information about Millet, Johnson or Standing Together students can visit www.standingtogether.org or their Facebook page.