The Friend is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints monthly magazine for children. Since I have kids, I should probably subscribe, but I’m a bad Mormon so I don’t. Which means I didn’t see this wonderful story until I came across it online: Prayers and Cathedrals. It’s a beautiful little story about a Mormon family visiting an Anglican cathedral to participate in Evensong. Told from the perspective of a child, it points out differences between Mormon and Anglican worship styles, but strongly emphasizes commonality, love, and unity.
The Church has long emphasized it’s distinctiveness for a variety of reasons, including our missionary emphasis and–I think–a little bit of having a chip on our shoulder as a young faith with a relatively recent history of persecution that is still not taken very seriously by many older and more established denominations. I’m a big believer in distinctiveness. You can’t have real diversity or tolerance without distinctiveness. But I’m also a big believer in making friends and finding common ground with those who come from different perspectives. And so, for me, an article like this was both exciting and heartwarming. You should definitely give it a read.