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"A Marvelous Work": Reading Mormonism in West Africa
by Laurie F. Maffly-Kipp
Utah State University Press, 2022
eISBN: 978-1-64642-348-4 | Paper: 978-1-64642-347-7

Two decades before the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints began official missionary work in West Africa, pamphlets, books, and other church materials had been circulating among Christians in Nigeria and Ghana. Brought by seekers who had studied abroad or encountered church members from other countries, those texts formed the basis for a Mormon community outside the bounds of U.S. institutional authority or oversight. What did this international Mormonism look like, and how did believers craft churches out of the bare materials of tracts and inspirational volumes? Laurie F. Maffly-Kipp explores the circulation and interpretation of this homegrown Mormon faith in the 1960s and 1970s and concludes with the dilemmas raised by the religious self-fashioning of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints establishment after 1978.
The Arrington Lecture series, established by one of the twentieth-century West's most distinguished historians, Leonard Arrington, has become a leading forum for prominent historians to address topics related to Mormon history. Utah State University hosts the Leonard J. Arrington Mormon History Lecture Series through the Merrill-Cazier Library Special Collections and Archives department.
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