As we send this issue of BYU Studies Quarterly to press, I find myself reflecting on the influences of many people upon my life. Goodly parents and beloved family members always come at the top of my appreciation list. I recently met with many friends associated with BYU Studies and was filled with overwhelming thankfulness for the many editors, authors, advisors, administrators, readers, and subscribers, who sustain this extraordinary publication. And I feel more profoundly indebted to BYU for its increasingly unusual mission. As President Dallin H. Oaks recently said at a BYU leadership conference, the mandate given to BYU now has a new complexity: "Today Brigham Young University . . . needs to resist being homogenized by the world." Using the analogy of "the battle group of CES" with BYU as the flagship, he charged this array of institutions to build up and defend the Church. This initiative also sets out to provide education for all members of the Church, wherever they may be, consistent with their circumstances. We have been called to rally our resources in this effort, and, at BYU Studies, we eagerly answer his call.
President Oaks encouraged BYU faculty to "offer public, unassigned support of Church policies." He emphasized the word unassigned, for "the duty is inherent in the position." BYU Studies hopes to place its corpus of valuable scholarship even more effectively at the disposal of scholars and Church members around the world. Our BYU Studies website and the social media channels of affiliated organizations are poised to educate and inspire people for good in the light of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
We invite you to join this effort, putting your shoulder to the wheel, submitting thoughtful and well-crafted materials, spreading the word, without waiting to be assigned. All articles in this journal are typical of this BYU Studies mode of operation. They are voluntarily submitted, unsolicited. They are then rigorously peer reviewed and edited by experts whose personal yearnings support the Church.