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#MormonMeToo Part 1: The First Law of Heaven

Episode description

McKenna Denson (left) is pictured at the Provo Missionary Training Center in 1984. Image courtesy of Jessica Lowder, with permission by McKenna Denson.

While McKenna Denson was was training as a Mormon missionary in the MTC in Provo, Utah in 1984, she says the MTC president, Joseph Bishop, raped her in a basement room.

Last year, she confronted Bishop in person and recorded their conversation, where he can be heard admitting to sexual misconduct with multiple women throughout his time as a high-ranking church leader.

Bishop denies the rape allegation, but a Brigham Young University police report shows that he told officers that while he served as president of the MTC, he asked a young sister missionary to expose her breasts to him in a basement room.

On this episode of Mosaic, the #MeToo movement comes to Mormonism.

In this first entry in a special series on #MormonMeToo, we'll look at how the Mormon concept of obedience helps shed light on this complex, difficult story.

On today's episode:

"Do You Know Who I Am?” (00:00-28:40) — A sister missionary confronts her MTC president on tape, she obtains a confession, and the tape gets out.

“In Her Words” (28:40-54:43) — McKenna Denson describes her decision to confront Joseph Bishop and what she experienced during the meeting.

“Dossier” (54:43-01:29:37) — We meet Denson's biological daughter Jessica Lowder, who was brought into this story after she was named on a dossier compiled by a lawyer for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in an apparent attempt to undermine Denson's credibility.

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