I have seen many people ask for a sort of “starting place” to become acquainted with Community of Christ. I have had various things that I have pointed people to, but I thought it might be a good idea to create a centralized place for all of my recommendations!
Please be aware: I have compiled a lot of resources here. This is as simple or as comprehensive as you want it to be. If you are going for simple, I would read Sharing in Community of Christ and pick out Project Zion Podcast episodes which interest you.
Sharing in Community of Christ
“Sharing in Community of Christ” is probably the best starting place. It is the collaborative result of many leaders, teams, and individuals to concisely convey and explore CoC’s identity, mission, message, and beliefs. Some particularly noteworthy extracts include:
The Mission Initiatives, which we believe are the aspects of Christ’s mission, and therefore our mission.
The Mission Prayer, which is a commonly-used mantra for us to meditate on as we pray.
The Enduring Principles (summarized here), are the values that Community of Christ has had an affinity for since its inception.
Basic Beliefs, which touch briefly on many different topics
Sacraments (summarized here), which are the rituals that Community of Christ performs. (Note: “Evangelist’s Blessing” was formerly referred to as “Patriarchal Blessing”)
Temples as Life-giving Symbol, which summarizes what the temple is and what it means to us. There are no secret rituals which are performed in the temples.
We Proclaim Jesus Christ, which is a summary of our relationship with Christ.
The 9 Scripture Affirmations, which summarize what scripture is and isn’t for us.
Perspectives on Church History, which summarizes our relationship with our past.
Content I’ve Created
I joined Community of Christ, specifically the online Beyond the Walls congregation, on February 6th, 2021, and was confirmed over a streamed service which you can watch here. I have been passionately studying Community of Christ history, theology, and culture since then! I have created a number of things which i feel are valuable resources:
“Joining a Church You’ve Never Been to” is my 2021 Sunstone presentation. It is a summary of my spiritual journey and Community of Christ history.
My testimony for the All Voices Conference
My peace lesson on 3rd and 4th Nephi
My lesson on D&C 150:7 and accompanying prayer
My “Light and Truth” sermon, about why dissent is important and pushes progress
The Book of Mormon: Plain and Precious Truths, which is my project to create an inclusive and plain english version of the Book of Mormon.
Emma Smith was a complete badass
I made a chart comparing Community of Christ prophet-presidents’ ages at ordination and at retirement/death as well as their length of tenures
Powerful Words from King Benjamin
In light of all the recent LDS excommunications I want to talk about Community of Christ’s “Faithful Disagreement Policy”.
The Purpose of Community of Christ’s temple in Independence
When I encounter homophobia I lean on these verses from Community of Christ’s D&C
Queer Advocacy Works in Community of Christ
Old RLDS Plan of Redemption / Plan of Salvation Preaching Charts
History of Community of Christ’s Prophetic Succession
John Hamer Lectures
John Hamer grew up LDS and has since joined Community of Christ and become a Seventy and also the pastor of the Toronto, Canada congregation. He is a historian, mapmaker, and graphic artist who has done a wonderful job of conveying many topics which span our history, theology, and culture. He has appeared on many podcasts, but also helps posts weekly lectures on his congregation’s YouTube page (and are consolidated in a list here). The following are some of my favorite videos he has helped produce:
History of the Community of Christ: part 1 (1820-1844), part 2 (1844-1860), part 3 (1860-1910)
Community of Christ as Church Home for Transitioning Mormons part 1 and part 2
Undefining ‘God’, which helped me give up pre-conceived notions of who and what God was and allowed me to explore healthier conceptions which better resonate with me.
The Book of Mormon: 19th Century Context, Authorship, and Meaning Today, which provide a great examination of this controversial book of scripture.
The Bible As Seen through Reformation Lenses, which drastically shifted my understanding of scripture.
The Historical Jesus, which provides an overview of what can and cannot be known about the historical Jesus and will talk about the difference between the portrait painted by academic history, the portraits painted by scripture, and the experience of the divine Christ as understood by Christians.
Homosexuality and the Bible, which takes a look at what the Bible does and doesn’t have to say about homosexuality. In contrast to the claims of many Evangelical Christians, the component texts of the Bible do not condemn same-sex orientation.
Joseph Smith the Seer, which seeks to cut through the mythic portrayal of the young Joseph Smith Jr. to try to understand him in his historical context.
Community of Christ’s Special Calling in the 21st Century, where he outlines his belief in the value of inclusive community institutions in a polarized world that is rapidly turning its back on progressive institutional churches
Project Zion is a coffee-themed podcast which talks about Community of Christ culture, history, scriptural interpretations, current events, church finances, life experiences, and all sorts of stuff. It frequently features seventies, apostles, and members of the first presidency. A full list of its 400+ episodes can be found here, but here are some of my favorites:
God, the Divine Feminine, and Women in Ministry
Supporting LGBTQ Individuals in the Wake of the LDS Church’s New Policy
Exploring Restoration Heritage and Community of Christ Distinctives
The Official Policy on Intoxicants
Word of Wisdom in Community of Christ and Intoxicants with Apostle Lachlan Mackay
A New Culture for Latter-day Seekers
Reimagining the Book of Mormon with John-Charles Duffy
Can a Peace Church Claim the Book of Mormon as Scripture?
Reframing and Repurposing the Book of Mormon
Church History Principles and Q&A with Barbara Walden and Apostle Lach Mackay part 1
Church History Principles and Q&A with Barbara Walden and Apostle Lach Mackay part 2
How Can You Be Christian and LGBTQIA+ Accepting?
Toward The Peaceful One with Seventy Elray Henriksen
Beyond the Walls Social Hour, a place to chat every Thursday at 7PM (Mountain time)
Beyond the Walls facebook group, the digital wing of the Toronto, Canada congregation – NOTE: You are able to join and be an active member of this congregation from anywhere you are in the world.
Beyond the Walls’s hymn library
Latter-day Seekers, a Community of Christ group for people with an LDS background
The Latter-day Seekers’ website, which contains many FAQs and reading materials.
Bishop Carla Long’s YouTube channel, where she tackles common and important topics
The Faithful Disagreement Policy, which affirms our right to dissent
Temple Tuesday, which explores the temple in Independence, Missouri with all of its meanings
Community of Christ Dialogue, the largest general-purpose Community of Christ facebook group
Sunday Worship Resources that the World Church puts out
Latter Day Truth, which has digitized a huge portion of historical church resources
Community of Christ Historic Sites Foundation, which runs many of the historic sites that Community of Christ owns. They do church history lectures which are incredible.
Herald House, which is the church’s publishing arm and has many good books.
Harmony, the CoC LGBT advocacy group, has a lot of great resources on its website, FB page, and FB group.
World Conference Resolutions, which are statements that the delegates of the church have voted to pass
Our Ministry Tools, which is a consolidated place for policies and procedures