Four new disciple-scholars at the Institute

04.28.2021 | The Maxwell Institute

The Maxwell Institute is excited to welcome four new disciple-scholars to its research community. Guided by the Institute’s mission statement, each faculty and staff member work to “inspire and fortify Latter-day Saints in their testimonies of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ and [engage] the world of religious ideas.” Maxwell Institute executive director Spencer Fluhman described each scholar as uniquely prepared to contribute the work of the Maxwell Institute and BYU.

“These are remarkable minds and hearts,” Fluhman said. “Each will make lasting contributions to the campus and beyond. We’re honored to have them work with us.”

Rosalynde Welch will be a Maxwell Institute Research Fellow. She holds a BA in English from Brigham Young University and a Ph.D. in early modern English literature from the University of California at San Diego, where her dissertation addressed the development and uses of private conscience in religious texts. Her work on Latter-day Saint literature, scripture, and theology has appeared in BYU Studies, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Journal of Book of Mormon Studies, Mormon Studies Review, and other scholarly journals and edited volumes. She is the author most recently of Ether: A Brief Theological Introduction (2020). At the institute, she will devote her time to Latter-day Saint theology and Christology and the “literary turn” in Book of Mormon Studies. She will join the Institute on September 1, 2022.

Jennifer Lane will be Neal A. Maxwell Research Associate at the Maxwell Institute. She comes to the Institute after serving as the Dean of Religious Education at BYU-Hawaii. Her nineteen years in Laie also include seven years of service as the Associate Academic Vice President for Curriculum. Over the years, she has published over twenty-five articles and book chapters on context and analysis of scripture, theology, and medieval studies. Her recent volume, Finding Christ in the Covenant Path: Ancient Insights for Modern Life, brings together decades of research from all of these different threads of study. Dr. Lane received her Ph.D. in Religion with an emphasis in History of Christianity from Claremont Graduate University and her M.A. and B.A. at BYU in Ancient Near Eastern Studies and History, respectively.  During her time at the Maxwell Institute, she looks forward to continuing her study of practices of substitute pilgrimage and how Christians sought access to the holiness of Jerusalem from a distance.  She is also working on projects related to atonement theology and the connection between wealth, worship, and idolatry. She will join the Institute on September 1, 2021.

Jeffrey G. Cannon will be a Research Associate sponsored by the Maxwell Institute’s Laura F. Willes Center for Book of Mormon Studies, where he will undertake a study on African readings of the Book of Mormon. More broadly, his research focuses on local manifestations of Christianity and their relationship to the worldwide church. He earned his Ph.D. in world Christianity from the University of Edinburgh, his M.A. in church history and church polity from the University of Pretoria, and his B.A. in political science from BYU. In 2017, the Mormon History Association awarded him the Article Award of Excellence for his article “A Faithful Band: Moses Mahlangu and the First Soweto Saints,” BYU Studies Quarterly 55, no. 1 (2016): 8–38, which he co-authored with Richard E. Turley, Jr. He will join the Institute on August 1, 2021.

Joseph Stuart is the Institute’s new Public Communications Specialist. He earned a B.A. in American Studies from Brigham Young University, an M.A. in Religious Studies from the University of Virginia, and is completing a Ph.D. in American History from the University of Utah. He has worked in administration in several capacities at the University of Utah, including in Grants and Contracts, Development, and as chairperson of the Rocky Mountain American Religion Seminar. His academic work examines the relationship of race, religion, and masculinity in the twentieth-century Black Freedom Movement, focusing on why and how the Nation of Islam rejected integration. His scholarship on Latter-day Saints addresses the lived experience of Saints navigating changes in their religion, particularly related to Official Declarations One and Two.