The Abiding Power of Sacred Family Rituals (Thursday 16 August, 2018)“What is the best thing I can do as a parent to bring our family closer together?”“How can I best strengthen my child’s faith?” As scholars and researchers of family and religion, questions like these are sometimes directed our way. Our two decades of interviewing about 200 very strong, “exemplar” families of various faiths from around the United States have revealed some answers to these difficult but vital questions.
Your Hardest Family Question: My fiancé wants to hide me from his children and grandchildren (Thursday 16 August, 2018)I've been told by my future fiancé that he never wants me to be involved in the lives of his children or grandchildren in any way, shape or form. His preference is that our marriage never includes any type of blending or inclusion by either of us with our respective children or grandchildren.
“Lord, it is good for us to be here” (Wednesday 15 August, 2018)From time to time, when I worship with my home congregation or, as tonight, visit with good friends and share, among other things, “talk of poems and prayers and promises and things that we believe in,” it suddenly hits me how good it is — and how blessed I am — to be part of such a community.
The Beautiful Gospel Lesson Hiding on Your Key Ring (Wednesday 15 August, 2018)Is your key ring also an object lesson?
Apostle Speaks to Japanese Youth in Their Own Language at Face to Face Event (Wednesday 15 August, 2018)Latter-day Saint youth from all over Japan participated in the first regional Face to Face broadcast in their country on Wednesday, August 15, 2018. The event, originating in Osaka and broadcast in Japanese, featured Elder Gary E. Stevenson of the Quorum of the Twelve. Young Church members in attendance listened as Elder Stevenson spoke entirely in Japanese, a language he first learned as a young missionary.
First-Rate Moroni Movie Will Happen (With Your Help) (Wednesday 8 August, 2018)His wildly successful first Kickstarter allowed him to make a spine-tingly good short concept film with real Hollywood talent (including Ben Cross, who I loved in Star Trek, Chariots of Fire, and First Knight). Now Darin Southam is back, swinging for the fences with a new Kickstarter looking to fund the full feature film. With our help, this could be real. It could also be really good.
Your Hardest Family Question: Am I being too emotionally sensitive? (Thursday 2 August, 2018)I’m a highly sensitive person and I know that I can sometimes get stuck in my emotions and make things more difficult than they need to be. My friends and family often give me a hard time, so I try to push through and not make a big deal about things. At the same time, my therapist tells me that it’s okay for me to have my feelings. I feel torn about how to reconcile these two things.
Why Christians Can’t Compromise on Conscience (Thursday 2 August, 2018)An attack on the faith is an attack on the virtue of the faithful, which a healthy society would cherish.
What Does Mary Whitmer Teach Us About Enduring Trials? (Thursday 2 August, 2018)The Three and Eight Witnesses of the Golden Plates stand out in Latter-day Saint History. Their testimonies are among the first words that many read in the Book of Mormon, and they stood by these testimonies to the end of their lives, despite trial and personal disaffection with Joseph Smith. But there are “unofficial” witnesses, including some of the prominent women of the early Restoration.
Understanding the Kingdoms of Ancient Israel (Tuesday 17 July, 2018)In this episode of LDS Perspectives Podcast, Laura Harris Hales interviews Dr. Dana M. Pike on Israel’s united and divided monarchies. In the early pages of the Old Testament, the people ask Samuel for a king, so they can be like the other nations and defend themselves. As seen in the Bible, this worked out to be both a blessing and a curse.
Preparing for the Honeymoon: 10 Tips for the Wedding Night (Wednesday 11 July, 2018)It’s wedding season! With intimacy issues as one of the major causes of divorce and dissatisfaction in marriage, couples would be wise to prepare for the honeymoon and the intimate aspects of marriage just as much as they prepare for the wedding day.
How the Lord Protected Latter-day Saints in the Air Raids of 1940s London (Tuesday 10 July, 2018)London, particularly, and many other large cities were in danger of destruction. Bombing began and it was very severe. Many people perished by day and by night. Latter-day Saints, I imagine, with the rest of the people prayed harder than ever before to be delivered from destruction.
Why children have the most to lose in the latest battle over LGBT and religious rights (Tuesday 10 July, 2018)In the first case of its kind, two sides will meet Thursday in court to decide whether a faith-based adoption agency can refuse to work with same-sex couples. The outcome could have surprising implications for families.
Dealing with Uninvited Guests: A Preparedness Plan for Home Invasion (Tuesday 10 July, 2018)It is terrifying to wake up in the middle of the night and realize someone is in your home. It is just as terrifying to hear someone in your home during the day, yes many thefts occur during the day. Always have a contingency plan that is well thought out. It's okay to walk around the house and create scenarios. It's not being paranoid, it's being prepared. Teach your children to do the same and walk thru scenarios with them. Here are some suggestions.
When the Signers of the Declaration of Independence Asked a Prophet to Redeem Them (Tuesday 3 July, 2018)Wilford Woodruff stated the following at the fall general conference in 1877: “Two weeks before I left St. George, the spirits of the dead gathered around me, wanting to know why we did not redeem them…These were the signers of the Declaration of Independence, and they waited on me for two days and two nights…”
The Women of the American Revolution (Tuesday 3 July, 2018)I am certain that you, like me, have never really given much thought to the role women played in bringing about a victorious ending to the brutal and hard fought American Revolutionary War. But without these courageous women, mostly behind the scenes, I am afraid that the end result could have been considerably different.
Gateway Arch Museum Opens with Exhibit Featuring Mormon History (Tuesday 3 July, 2018)When it comes to Latter-day Saints and Missouri in the 1830s, thoughts often go to the infamous 1838 extermination order. A less familiar but more redeeming story, however, is that Latter-day Saints had friends on the other side of the state. St. Louisans defended Latter-day Saints, and the city played a key role in their later migration to Utah. This history, along with many others from the westward expansion of the United States, is now being told at the renovated Gateway Arch Museum in St. Louis.
Keeping Your Family Safe During Summer Fun (Tuesday 12 June, 2018)Now is a time to consider the dangers we all face during the summer months guaranteeing our summer can be a time we reflect on with joy and not regrets. The most serious of the summertime dangers are heat and the sun itself. Here's how you can recognize serious symptoms and treat them before they become an even bigger problem.
At ‘Be One’ Celebration, a Call for Optimism and Overcoming Prejudice (Sunday 3 June, 2018)40th Anniversary Commemoration included deeply moving song, dance and the spoken word. Watch the full video here.
Let’s Empower the New Generation (Sunday 3 June, 2018)We all know young adults who are either falling away from active religious practice or are struggling in some way with moving forward. Within 10 years of adulthood, nearly 60 percent of Christian, 30 percent of Jewish, and 25 percent of Muslim young adults are entering a religious hiatus of some sort. There is an epidemic of relativism and secularism. What's to be done?
An Interview with the Author: ‘A Global History of Blacks and Mormonism’ (Tuesday 29 May, 2018)Engaging Mormonism and race is not an issue confined to the past; it is of immediate relevance to Mormon engagements in African and African diaspora communities throughout the world. This conversation can serve as a point of departure for readers/listeners who aspire to teach that “all are alike unto God”—and how it was that Latter-day Saints could ever see it otherwise.
The Scent of Mormonism (Tuesday 29 May, 2018)A thoughtful and well-regarded student of American Catholicism, asked about the scent he had detected during an LDS temple open house. He thought it might have been incense, and wondered whether there was a place for sacred smoke in Mormon temple worship. We reassured the visitor that Mormons don’t use incense in their sacred rituals, and the conversation rapidly transitioned to a practical sort of question: what is the typical scent of Mormonism?
What Being Christian in Western Europe Looks Like Today (Tuesday 29 May, 2018)The majority of Europe’s Christians are non-practicing, but they differ from religiously unaffiliated people in their attitudes toward Muslims and immigrants, views on God, and opinions about religion’s role in society. See the results of a recent PEW study on this group.
After Two Years in Venezuelan Prison, Utahn Josh Holt is Finally Released (Sunday 27 May, 2018)Sitting in the White House Saturday night next to President Donald Trump after a long day of travel, Josh Holt was "overwhelmed with gratitude" for the efforts of all the people that brought him home to U.S. soil.
New York Times: What Islamophobic Politicians Can Learn From Mormons (Sunday 27 May, 2018)NYT: "Republican officials in 49 states have publicly attacked Islam, some even questioning its legitimacy as a religion. The only exception? Utah. In that state, where a majority of residents is Mormon, elected officials seem to have a deep understanding that an attack on the religious freedom of one group is an attack on the religious freedom of everyone."
INTERVIEW: New Docu-drama to Explore Personal Stories of Blacks and the Priesthood (Monday 21 May, 2018)Peter Johnson, the maker of such LDS film favorites as “Mr. Kreuger’s Christmas” and “How Rare A Possession” talks about his current exciting film project: a docu-drama that presents gripping historical and present-day perspectives of the Priesthood for all races and nations. The movie features the true-life conversion story of Ed and Wanda Willis who started their life together in the early 60’s as active Black Panthers.
Teaching Our Children to Love and Serve Each Other (Monday 21 May, 2018)Quarreling and bickering among siblings are painfully common in family life. How can parents prevent contention between their children?
LDS Man Cycles 1400 Miles in the Race to Become Nevada’s Next Governor (Monday 21 May, 2018)In addition to being the parents of four children, Jared and his wife Heather Fisher are the owners of Las Vegas Cyclery and Escape Adventures bike tours. With cycling as his lens on the world, Fisher decided to ride 1400 miles across the state of Nevada in an attempt to better understand the people and the issues he might be tasked to help solve.
Join the Proctors for the Royal Egypt Discovery Tour in 2019! (Tuesday 15 May, 2018)We know this has always been on your bucket list. Egypt is everything you ever dreamed and more! Can you imagine the incredible history of this mysterious and wondrous land? Here is a civilization that seemed to spring into existence out of nowhere and was a key player in world history for thousands of years. Now is the perfect time to explore this ancient land.
Is there Evidence of Sunken Cities in Ancient America? (Tuesday 1 May, 2018)After the great destruction which was recorded in 3 Nephi, the Lord’s voice was heard declaring that the “great city Moroni have I caused to be sunk in the depths of the sea". Some may wonder if there is any evidence that cities were flooded in this manner in the ancient Americas.
Church’s New Website and Celebration: Be One (Tuesday 1 May, 2018)The LDS Church is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the 1978 revelation on the priesthood with a new website and a program in the Conference Center. Here's how to get tickets.
Most social networks will no longer be available in LDS meetinghouses beginning in May (Tuesday 1 May, 2018)Access to many social media sites will no longer be available in meetinghouses after a change to the Church's internet configuration in meetinghouses beginning in May.
A Little Girl Who Needed An Angel (Tuesday 1 May, 2018)She looked tough, not like someone who would need an angel.
Lesson 19 – The Reign of the Judges (Monday 30 April, 2018)The reign of the judges in the Old Testament reminds us that "with God, all things are possible," and that the Lord often calls the unlikely (in the eyes of the world) to champion his cause.
The Battle Hymn of a Just Parent (Wednesday 25 April, 2018)Emotions are the number one reason why parents and children don’t act with integrity and justice. Yes, that’s right. Even though my parents weren’t always just, I wasn’t either. In the relationship, none of us were living the way we should have been living. So, how can we endeavor to become a "just" parent?
Positive Family Stories Strengthen Children (Wednesday 25 April, 2018)Sharing what we have learned through life’s experiences is an effective way to connect with and teach our children. But what if your children are young, like mine? Is it too early to begin sharing these stories and memories with them?
Through a Gospel Lens: One Psychologist’s 12 Rules for Life (Monday 23 April, 2018)I recently came across a wonderful book by Jordan B. Peterson, '12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos.' Jordan is a clinical psychologist and I would say, philosopher. The result is a practical, high-reaching set of rules which are useful to explore through the lens of gospel living.
The Myth of Invisible Motherhood (Monday 23 April, 2018)We live in a world that tells us our worth is found in external achievements. It’s in our grade point average, our college degree, how much money we make, or how many likes we got on our last post. It’s natural to try to find a measuring stick for success as a mother. But no one hands out medals for the things we do every day.
Why Women Struggle with Pornography Too (And How to Talk with Your Daughter About It) (Monday 23 April, 2018)“I have daughters, so I’m not worried.” I’ve heard this rationale over and over again as I’ve talked to parents about protecting children from pornography. I only wish it were true that 50% of our children were completely immune to pornography’s pull.
Finding Inspiration in the Midst of Anxiety (Sunday 22 April, 2018)We worry, we dread, we fear. We can’t find a place of quiet. We seem to be deaf to the advice Christ gave his followers: “Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.” We have a hard time following this advice, however right and wise it is.
What Would A Holy Woman Do? (Sunday 22 April, 2018)Published in 2013 by Deseret Book, a little book by our Prophet’s wife, Sister Wendy Watson Nelson reports on an experiment with several of her friends. Count me in on anything that will help me to apply President Nelson’s counsel at General Conference to increase our spiritual capacity.
Key moment in Hurricane Harvey recovery: Houston LDS temple rededicated (Sunday 22 April, 2018)Shawn Calvert seemed to exhale a bit Sunday after stepping outside the newly rededicated Houston Texas Temple. The low-key rededication ceremony signaled better days ahead for Calvert. For perhaps the first time in nearly eight months, he and legions of other hurricane-weary Mormons living in southeast Texas were catching their breath and looking forward.
Embracing Faith When You’re Filled with Fear (Wednesday 11 April, 2018)President Gordon B. Hinckley said that faith is the antithesis of fear. So how can we turn our back on the fear side, and fully face and embrace the faith side? I have compiled a list of things that may help unblock your view of heaven.
Nauvoo, the Beautiful and Malaria Infested: A Discussion with Christopher Blythe (Wednesday 11 April, 2018)In this latest episode of the LDS Perspectives Podcast, Laura Harris Hales interviews Christopher about important documents from the early Nauvoo period and what they can teach us about the joys and sorrows of that crucial moment in Church History.
Apostle Elder Neil L. Andersen shares more insight on call to ‘minister’ (Wednesday 11 April, 2018)In a recent address at Brigham Young Unversity, Elder Andersen shared more insight about “ministering in a holier way,” as President Nelson described, and gave examples of how different people have ministered to others.
What is Your Wayward Child Worth to God? (Tuesday 3 April, 2018)If the scriptures teach us anything, they teach us that Israel’s God will not let Israel go, despite her bouts of waywardness. The Lord is always reaching out to her. Robert L. Millet surmises rightly, “What is true of a nation is equally true of individuals. Few of us in this life will, through our sins, place ourselves beyond the pale of saving grace.”
Illuminate Podcast: Who Needs to Know About My Addiction? (Tuesday 3 April, 2018)In this latest episode, Geoff Steurer interviews Jeff Ford, licensed marriage and family therapist and co-director of LifeStar of St. George, UT, about the sensitive topic of disclosure. They discuss difficult questions for those recovering from addiction such as: Who needs to know? How much should I tell? What is the best way to go about it?
Why Did Nephi Include the Story of the Broken Bow? (Tuesday 3 April, 2018)During Lehi’s travel through ancient Arabia, his sons needed to slay animals for food from time to time in order for their group to avoid starvation. Nephi reported on one occasion that he went hunting and broke his bow. Although this story may seem rather unremarkable, it may actually be loaded with symbolic importance.
How God’s Creatures Can Teach Us About their Creator (Tuesday 27 March, 2018)The young man had always believed in a God, but it was through his relationships with animals that he came to know something of Him. He believed he could see the hand of a joyous, careful, loving Creator behind the actions of the animals. Seeing it, his love for the animals, and for their Creator, grew together.
Beauty for Ashes: Learning From Christ How to Endure (Tuesday 27 March, 2018)Scott Livingston is currently a Stake President, and many of the recurring concerns that surface as he counsels with individuals and couples led him to write the book 'Beauty for Ashes: Learning from Christ How to Endure Life's Greatest Pains, Sufferings, and Sorrows.' In the latest episode from LDS Perspectives, he discusses some of the lessons he learned as he wrote this book.
The Adventure of a Lifetime: South America and Antarctica with the Proctors (Monday 26 March, 2018)If you want a cruise that is a once-in-a-lifetime adventure with more breathtaking moments than you could ever imagine, this excursion to South America and Antarctica with Maurine and Scot Proctor is for you. We are headed to a place you can only go by boat to see, not only Antarctica—the most pristine place on the planet, but also southern Chile and Argentina, a region that is known as Patagonia.
What Did the Lord Mean When He Said Moses Would Become “God to Pharaoh”? (Sunday 25 March, 2018)What did the Lord mean when He said Moses would become “god to Pharaoh”? And how did the symbolism of the plagues undermine the worship of the Egyptian gods? (Supplement to Gospel Doctrine Lesson 13)
Church Announces 8 Cities President Nelson Will Visit on Global Tour (Sunday 25 March, 2018)As announced last month, President Russell M. Nelson of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and his wife, Wendy, along with Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and his wife, Patricia, will visit Europe, Africa and Asia in April. Here are some of the specific cities in which they will hold meetings.
Illuminate Podcast: When You’re Not Finding Hope in Isolation (Sunday 18 March, 2018)Michelle's online volunteer work took an unexpected turn in late 2011 when search engine data showed the desperate need many LDS women had for help and support because of the addiction of a loved one. In this episode, Geoff Steurer presents his second half of his interview Michelle Linford, the founder and administrator for LDS Hope and Healing.
The Trouble with Confidence in Ward Councils (Sunday 18 March, 2018)One key to success in councils is listening to and even drawing out the views of all participants to see problems and challenges from new angles, adding vital information we may otherwise lack. For some fellow Latter-day Saints in Shanghai, I once illustrated the limitations of a single viewpoint by revealing the secret of a simple magic trick.
Further Update on the Lost Tribes of Meridian (Tuesday 13 March, 2018)We have certainly had fun trying to gather the Lost Tribes of Israel. About 2,000 readers have responded and thousands more have shared in the fun reading about it. I think you will enjoy the reader comments in this brief article, especially some that relate to Russia and South Africa.
TV Host Apologizes for anti-Christian Slur (Tuesday 13 March, 2018)Joy Behar, co-host of ABC’s “The View” placed a private phone call to Vice President Mike Pence apologizing for her anti-Christian slur aimed at him on her television show in February. Then on Tuesday she admitted on air, “I think Vice President Pence is right. I was raised to respect everyone’s religious faith and I fell short of that.”
A New Campus Survey Reveals Just How Students Are ‘Unlearning Liberty’ (Tuesday 13 March, 2018)When presented with a false choice between free speech and inclusivity, they choose the latter.
Inviting Healing after Serious Conflict (Wednesday 7 March, 2018)At the conclusion of the U.S. Civil War, Union general Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain was surprised to be chosen to conduct and receive the surrender of Confederate troops. He resolved to conduct a parade of surrender that would in some way invite the beginning of healing from the conflict of brother against brother and family against family.
Do You Have the Patience to Build a Masterpiece? (Monday 5 March, 2018)Raising children is a bit like that huge, old, half-constructed house out in the field. It’s such a slow, drawn-out process sometimes. Some days are hard and tiresome. And most days it appears that nothing is changing or working. But it takes time to build a masterpiece.
Elder Renlund Dedicates Barbados for the Preaching of the Gospel, Visits Caribbean Nations (Monday 5 March, 2018)At storied Gun Hill Signal Station, Elder Dale G. Renlund of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles on February 18 dedicated the island nation of Barbados for the preaching of the gospel, concluding a nine-day review of the Church’s Caribbean Area that included stops in the Dominican Republic and Haiti.
How children get caught in the clash over LGBT and religious rights (Monday 5 March, 2018)For decades, faith-based adoption agencies avoided conflict with the LGBT community by serving only married couples. That became impossible when states started legalizing same-sex marriage. "You could see then that adoption was going to be an issue." Beginning in 2006, many faith-based agencies began to close because they were unwilling to serve LGBT couples or unable to operate without state funds. "In the name of tolerance, we're not being tolerated."
Illuminate Podcast: Lessons from a Betrayal Trauma Support Group for LDS Women (Sunday 4 March, 2018)In this episode, Geoff Steurer interviews Michelle Linford, the founder and administrator for LDS Hope and Healing. She talks about patterns of healing she's seen as she's supported and connected with women in recovery from betrayal trauma. In this episode, she share lessons she's learned in both her own personal journey and witnessing the journey of hundreds of others in recovery.
What Are We To Make of Jacob’s Apparent Deceitfulness? (Sunday 4 March, 2018)Why is Jacob so greatly blessed when “the pivotal moments in the scriptural account of [his] life seem to turn on deceit”?
Mormon leader shares details on LDS Church finances (Sunday 4 March, 2018)"Some people occasionally describe today’s church as a powerful and prosperous institution," he said. "This may be true, but the strength of the church cannot be measured merely by the number or beauty of its buildings or by its financial and real estate holdings."
Sequel to ‘The Other Side of Heaven’ Will Tell the Next Chapter in John and Jean Groberg’s Story (Wednesday 28 February, 2018)“Someday I hope we can walk these sands together,” wrote Elder John Groberg to his sweetheart Jean in the 2001 film The Other Side of Heaven. What many may not know is that John and Jean Groberg did indeed get the chance to walk those beaches together and now the just-announced sequel will tell a piece of that story.
13 Helpful Hints for Dating After Divorce (Tuesday 27 February, 2018)I had no idea what I was getting into being in my fifties and back in the dating scene again. I just knew that I wanted that most sacred of human relationships before I died. I was going to do it right this time. Now, looking back, having successfully found exactly what I needed and wanted, here is what I would advise my fellow travelers through the same valley of single-hood.
Four LDS Missionaries Injured in Truck Crash in Spain (Tuesday 27 February, 2018)Four LDS Missionaries and their investigator, who was at the wheel, suffered injuries after colliding with a truck on Monday night in Spain, according to a spokesperson for the LDS Church.
The Atlantic on “Why Romney is Running for Senate” (Tuesday 20 February, 2018)The former Republican presidential nominee extolled Utah's values as a better option for his party, and his country, as he announced his bid for Senate.
Unraveling the Mysteries of the Dead Sea Scrolls (Tuesday 20 February, 2018)In this episode, PhD student Joshua Matson visits with Laura Harris Hales about the Dead Sea Scrolls; what questions they answer and what questions still remain.
Alleviating Your Family’s Restlessness During Times of Disaster (Tuesday 20 February, 2018)During a time of stress it is so important to have some ideas ready to help alleviate times of boredom and sometimes fear. Carefully ready thru the suggestions below and prepare now by purchasing items you will need. All of these will be great in a hotel room or evacuation center. You may even be able to help other families survive their evacuation experience.
“My Deceased Father Loves My Stepfather” (Wednesday 14 February, 2018)My father passed away while I was serving a full time mission. When I returned home, the transition back into living for myself caused me to go through a bit of a mourning process. Not for my father that died, no, the Lord had already healed me from that. This mourning happened every time my mother left on a date.
The Parable of the Bathtub: Avoiding Spiritual Desensitization (Wednesday 14 February, 2018)One of the greatest dangers we face in these high tech latter days is the threat of becoming desensitized to the whisperings of the Holy Spirit. It is crucial that we understand and recognize areas where we may already have a toe or foot in spiritually dangerous waters.
How the White House Proposal on Immigration Reform Squares with the Church’s Official Statement (Tuesday 13 February, 2018)It is good to know that the White House and the LDS Church are both in favor of securing protections for Dreamers – something 78% of Americans voters also support, but we should also consider how the Church’s statement addresses the rest of the White House framework.
Walking Through Walls and War Zones: Disruptions (Tuesday 6 February, 2018)Disruption is inevitable. It is an essential part of the mortal experience—the precursor to our stretching beyond our inclinations and into our ideals, though it can do the opposite and lead us to shrink. As Elder Neal A. Maxwell said, reflecting on his cancer, “I have learned that not shrinking is more important than surviving.”
Understanding Our Transgender Moment (Tuesday 6 February, 2018)As new gender ideologies are promoted throughout America, the lies will impact not only those who suffer from gender dysphoria, but all children who need to mature in their self-understanding as a boy or girl, man or woman, a potential husband or wife, father or mother.
Was Noah’s Ark Designed As a Floating Temple? (Sunday 28 January, 2018)In the Bible, Noah’s ark is described as a huge, rectangular box with three floors and a roof, which makes it sound more like a building than a boat. Was Noah’s ark designed as a floating “temple”? (Gospel Doctrine Lesson 6A)
Your Hardest Family Question: My sister is a danger to my family (Thursday 25 January, 2018)I have tried to speak to my parents about my concerns for her mental illness, but my mother dismisses her behavior. I fear for my siblings still at home, and I fear for my husband and children when we are with her, but I feel utterly powerless to do anything about it.
Could Joseph Smith Have Drawn On Ancient Manuscripts When He Translated the Story of Enoch? (Thursday 25 January, 2018)Some say that Joseph Smith drew on ancient stories about Enoch not found in the Bible as he translated the chapters on Enoch in Moses 6-7. How similar are the stories of Enoch in ancient accounts to modern scripture? And could Joseph Smith have been aware of them?
How Does the Book of Moses Illustrate the Consequences of Keeping and Breaking Temple Covenants? (Tuesday 23 January, 2018)Some people believe that the basic teachings and covenants available today in LDS temple ordinances were not revealed to Joseph Smith until he got to Nauvoo. Others say he knew a great deal about temple matters long before that time. What could the Prophet have learned about temple covenants as he translated Moses 5-8 in 1830-31? (Gospel Doctrine Lesson 5B)
Christianity Gets a Faith Lift… from Harvard (Tuesday 23 January, 2018)After years of hearing the same dire predictions, even churchgoers probably assumed the country's faith had dwindled. Like us, you've seen the headlines about declining church attendance or the millennials' rejection of faith and just assumed the stories were true. Not so fast, says Harvard University.
What Was the Sword of Laban Like? (Tuesday 23 January, 2018)The sword of Laban is one of the most iconic objects in the Book of Mormon. It was passed down from generation to generation and was apparently still being used in battle even during the time of King Benjamin. Yet the Book of Mormon does not give much information about how the sword looked.
On the New York Times Obituary for President Monson (Wednesday 10 January, 2018)As an American, I am deeply disappointed by the missed opportunity this obituary represents. As a Latter-day Saint, I found my faith oddly affirmed by the piece. Here's why.
How to Participate in the Funeral Services for President Monson (Wednesday 10 January, 2018)Whether you live in the Salt Lake area and plan to attend in person, or would like to tune in to the funeral for President Thomas S. Monson in some other way, here is the information you'll need to participate.
Advocates for Abstinence Education Have Something to Celebrate (Wednesday 10 January, 2018)For every parent who’s tried to tell their teenage kids that “everyone’s not doing it,” here’s proof! According to the CDC’s new nationwide report, the number of high school students who said they’ve ever had sex dropped from 47 percent in 2005 to 41 percent in 2015.
Treating Misbehavior with Compassion and Teaching (Monday 8 January, 2018)Picture this: A four-year-old is playing with her 6-year-old sister and her sister’s friend. Can you already see what is going to happen? At some point, the younger sister became frustrated—probably from being excluded or mocked. The young one became angry and scratched the arm of the neighbor child. Screaming began and Mom ran to the mayhem.
What Can the Architecture of Israelite Temples Teach Us About Creation and the Garden of Eden? (Monday 8 January, 2018)In reading the description of the seven days of Creation and the layout of the Garden of Eden, there seems to be more than meets the eye. What insights can be gained about these things from understanding the architecture of the Israelite temples?
Why Would God Choose an Uneducated Man to Translate the Book of Mormon? (Monday 8 January, 2018)No matter how many years (or seasons) Joseph attended school, or how helpful his supplemental educational opportunities may have been, or how quick he was as a learner, or how sharp his memory, or how creative his imagination—it doesn’t change the fact that he and those around him, both friend and foe, described him as relatively unlearned. So, why would the Lord choose him as a translator?
President Monson Funeral Arrangements Announced (Wednesday 3 January, 2018)Funeral services for President Thomas S. Monson, leader of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will be held in the Conference Center on Temple Square Friday, January 12, 2018, at 12:00 p.m. MST. Get more details here.
Statements from the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve on the Passing of President Thomas S. Monson (Wednesday 3 January, 2018)“President Thomas S. Monson was a mighty Prophet of God and we are honored to have served by his side these past 10 years." Read the full statement from President Eyring and President Uchtdorf here. Additionally, the Quorum of the Twelve pay tribute to their beloved friend in a separate statement.
President Thomas S. Monson Dies at Age 90 (Wednesday 3 January, 2018)With tender feelings we announce that Thomas S. Monson, president and prophet of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, died Tuesday evening at 10:01 pm in his home in Salt Lake City. He was with family at the time of his passing. He died at age 90 from causes incident to age.
Why Is David Whitmer’s Witness of the Book of Mormon So Compelling? (Monday 1 January, 2018)After traveling nearly 100 miles to reach Harmony, Pennsylvania, David Whitmer met Joseph Smith for the first time at the end of May 1829. David had received word from Oliver Cowdery that Joseph had an ancient record, that he had begun translating it, and that harassment from locals in Harmony was deterring their progress.
Make Your Dreams Come True with a Magnificent Norwegian Fjords Cruise! (Wednesday 20 December, 2017)Let’s face it, Norway is blessed to be one of the most beautiful countries (if not the most beautiful) on this amazing planet. And isn't Norway on your bucket list? It is on ours! Come with us to cruise the stunning fjords in August 2018. Just take a look!
Discover China with the Proctors in 2018 (Tuesday 19 December, 2017)With our partners in China we have designed an out-of-the-ordinary experience for your journey to China, including the opportunity to trek off the beaten path to a remote section of the Great Wall and help restore the Wall by adding your own brick. That's just the beginning! We have also designed an amazing add-on tour at the end to go the Yellow Mountains, one of the most stunning and breathtaking landscapes on planet earth--and for a bargain price! Now is a great time to go to China. Come and see.
“Unto Us This Day”: Remembering the Nephites at Christmas (Sunday 17 December, 2017)Most Christmas stories center around the blessed events in Bethlehem, and the birth of the Christ child. But there were also believers in the New World, in ancient America, who were anxiously awaiting a sign in the heavens that would tell them that Jesus was born, and it would literally save their lives.
Tonight’s Family Home Evening: A Christmas Story in Two Nations (Sunday 17 December, 2017)You may already have plans for a Christmas-themed Family Home Evening tonight. Here is the perfect way to bring it to a wonderful, Christ-centered conclusion.
Why Meridian Needs Your Voluntary Subscription (Wednesday 13 December, 2017)Meridian has nearly completed another year of publishing thousands of wonderful, powerful and moving articles, and now we need your help. Truly. Come and find out why.
The Gifts We Sometimes Forget We Are Getting at Christmastime (Tuesday 5 December, 2017)For all of us, Christmas is associated with gifts and giving. Most of us have spent and will spend countless hours making and buying gifts for others. But there are gifts we receive again and again that we sometimes don't recognize. These gifts should set the example for how we give gifts to others.
An Introduction to Higher Biblical Criticism with Philip Barlow (Tuesday 5 December, 2017)On this episode, Philip Marlow discusses with Russell Stevenson factors in the nineteenth century that changed how scholars interpreted the Bible, including the introduction of historical criticism.
LDS Church unveils charity vending machines on Temple Square (Thursday 30 November, 2017)The LDS Church is offering a completely new idea in vending machines.
Have you Ever Flipped Gratitude Inside Out? (Monday 20 November, 2017)Here’s a way to make Thanksgiving even more meaningful.
Here’s why non-evangelicals should pay attention to evangelical politics (Monday 20 November, 2017)"I became convinced that the only way for people to understand evangelicals is to understand their history." Read a recent interview with author Frances FitzGerald about why non-evangelicals should care about the politics of this group that makes up a fifth of the country.
What’s it like to be a Mormon in the largest Muslim nation? (Monday 20 November, 2017)Mormonism is barely a speck of paint on the tableau of faith in Indonesia, the most populous Muslim nation on the planet. The LDS Church has about 7,300 members in a population that tops 260 million. But for second-generation Mormon Jemmy Mongan, an LDS public affairs official in Jakarta, that minuscule presence is his whole world.
Elder M. Russell Ballard addresses difficult questions on LGBTQ issues, suicide, pornography at BYU devotional (Tuesday 14 November, 2017)In addressing the questions regarding revelation, suicide, pornography, missionary work, kindness and same-sex attraction, Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles shared candid and timely advice to students at Brigham Young University on Tuesday, Nov. 14, during a campus devotional.
A Joseph Smith Historian on the Failure of the Bank in Kirtland (Tuesday 14 November, 2017)On this episode of the LDS Perspectives Podcast, Russell Stevenson interviews Elizabeth Kuehn, a Joseph Smith Papers historian and documentary editor, about one of the lasting blemishes on the Mormon Kirtland experience – the failure of the Kirtland Safety Society Bank.
LDS Young Men leaders interrupt meeting to save girls in submerged car (Tuesday 14 November, 2017)They were discussing a variety of issues when one of the leaders, who is an on-call volunteer for the Madison Fire Department, interrupted the speaker. “He said he just got a notification that there was something going on down the road...he made it sound like someone was pinned underneath a car and said we could get there faster than the ambulance.” Everyone in the group jumped from their seats and ran to their vehicles.
Travel with the Proctors to the Beginning of Time: Egypt! (Wednesday 1 November, 2017)We know Egypt has always been on your bucket list. Can you imagine the history of this mysterious and wondrous land? Now is the perfect time to explore this ancient land and see its most important sites on a full 7-day-in-country tour of one of the most sought out locations in the world.
Dedication of Provo MTC Marks New Era of Missionary Work, President Eyring Says (Wednesday 18 October, 2017)“We speak sometimes of hastening His work as if we can change His time schedule by our effort,” said President Eyring, moments before offering a prayer of dedication on the new MTC facilities in Provo. “My guess is that we can neither delay nor accelerate His plan. But we can, if we listen to His Spirit, play our part to make His called messengers more joyful and more effective..."
Sunday School General President: ‘How can I receive more revelation in my life?’ (Wednesday 18 October, 2017)One of the ways we can enhance our personal revelation is to write down and record spiritual insights and impressions when they come. When we do so, we show the Lord we value His counsel and are ready for more.
Wall Street Journal Praises Studio C for its “Super-scrubbed Brand of Clean Humor” (Wednesday 18 October, 2017)Wall Street Journal: "Studio C has achieved sizable popularity on the internet, despite—or perhaps because of—its super-scrubbed brand of clean humor, such as a skit about a soccer goalie named Scott Sterling who accidentally, and agonizingly, blocks shots with his face."
Pushing Past a Prophet (Wednesday 27 September, 2017)How one woman learned about temples and prophets in a split second.
Book of Mormon manuscript an extraordinary treasure, experts say (Friday 22 September, 2017)The printer's manuscript of the Book of Mormon was on display in Utah for the first time in history Thursday, and people lined up at the LDS Church History Library to see it.
Your Hardest Family Question: My son-in-law embarrasses our daughter and grandchildren (Thursday 21 September, 2017)I have a son-in-law who is a great father and husband, but he does something that makes the rest of the family terribly uncomfortable. When he’s in mixed company, he’ll openly argue with his wife and children.
BYU selling caffeinated soft drinks on campus (Thursday 21 September, 2017)As of now, and for the first time since the 1950's, you can buy a caffeinated Coca Cola on the BYU campus.
Faith Key to Rebounding from Refugee Status, Apostle Says (Wednesday 13 September, 2017)Elder Holland and Sharon Eubank speak at Windsor Conference about helping Yazidis.
Lest We Forget: The Vision of Educating Young People (Wednesday 6 September, 2017)Is our current educational plan adequate for the future our children will face? How can we know what they will need when the future is uncertain? What is most important?
LDS Church Cautioning Members, Missionaries as Hurricane Irma Hits Caribbean (Wednesday 6 September, 2017)For the second time in less than three weeks, the LDS Church is taking steps to help its members and missionaries prepare for a hurricane of historic proportions.
Pressing the Pause Button to Serve a Mission (Wednesday 6 September, 2017)What actually happens when missionaries set aside their current activities.
President Uchtdorf Visits Texas in Hurricane Harvey Aftermath (Sunday 3 September, 2017)Bishop Caussé and other leaders lend support.
Missionary Moment: Caught in a Labor Daze (Sunday 3 September, 2017)Through the month of August, it has been easy for us to get discouraged at the lack of visible progress on the missionary front. Not many visitors coming to church. Not many people to teach. Not many people to find. Well, those days are now over.
Labor Day: The Perfect Time For Health (Sunday 3 September, 2017)Although we call it “Labor Day” referring to U.S. workers and honoring their right to fair labor laws that balance the needs for work, rest and safe working conditions, the word “labor” has many applications that are well worth spending a moment on this Labor Day.
Captain Moroni Epic Coming to Hollywood? (Thursday 31 August, 2017)Millions of Book of Mormon readers, inspired by the message of heroism and morality in times of war found in the Book of Alma, have likely had the same thought: “This would make an amazing movie.” Now, it may actually happen.
LDS Church History Department Acquires New Fragments of Original Book of Mormon Manuscript (Wednesday 30 August, 2017)The Book of Mormon printer’s manuscript has been published virtually in its entirety, but what LDS historians consider the “crown jewel” of the book’s origin — the original manuscript handwritten as Joseph Smith dictated to scribes his translation of the Nephite record preserved on gold plates — exists only in fragmentary form. Now, the history department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has announced the acquisition within the past two months of yet more fragments from that priceless document.
Joseph’s Study of Hebrew and the Book of Abraham with Matthew J. Grey (Wednesday 30 August, 2017)Join Laura Harris Hales as she discusses with Matthew Grey the influence of Joseph's Hebrew study on his subsequent teachings and the vital piece of the Book of Abraham translation puzzle this new research provides.
When You’re Caught in the Conflict Between Science and Religion (Tuesday 22 August, 2017)Listen in as Laura Harris Hales of the LDS Perspectives Podcast and Steven Peck share a blunt discussion about the harmful effect teaching a tension between science and religion can have on testimonies. Both science and religion can work together in Steven’s model of theology to build faith.
Terrorism: Acknowledging the Threat, Minimizing the Fear (Tuesday 22 August, 2017)Do you know what to do should a terrorist attack occur? Does your family know what to do?
Who was the True Author of the Lectures on Faith? (Tuesday 11 July, 2017)In this latest episode of the LDS Perspectives Podcast, join Laura Harris Hales as she discusses with Noel Reynolds the mystery of the authorship of the Lectures on Faith and what we can learn from that moment in Mormon history.
The Foreknowledge, Power and Love of God (Tuesday 11 July, 2017)God showers us with miracles. If we are observant, we can recognize his fore-knowledge of, power in behalf of and love for us. Consider these three miracle stories by anonymous contributors.
We’re Havin’ a Heat Wave: 23 Things to Do About It (Tuesday 11 July, 2017)There are things we can do to be more comfortable during a heat wave whether or not we have power. Following are a few steps you can take to help a summer power outage or heat wave a little more bearable and to ensure your safety as the temperatures rise.
Supreme Court Rules for Church in High-profile Religious Freedom Case (Monday 26 June, 2017)The state of Missouri went too far in refusing to resurface a religiously affiliated preschool's playground, the Supreme Court ruled Monday, in a case that some legal observers said didn't live up to its hype in addressing a church's access to public funding.
Public Open House to Begin at Idaho Falls Idaho Temple (Monday 17 April, 2017)Interior renovations complete on World War II-era house of worship.
Homelessness: Beyond the ‘Where’ (Wednesday 12 April, 2017)Homelessness is not a “thing” for us to deal with. It is about helping people. Just as a discussion on education should begin by acknowledging each child as a unique individual with unique needs – our conversation about homelessness must also begin with a focus on the plight of the person on the street.
Get Out From Under the Table (Wednesday 12 April, 2017)Sometimes life’s best lessons are learned in the nursery.
Utah Mormon Running for President of Kenya (Monday 10 April, 2017)Amram Musungu walked dozens of miles every day to attend school in Hamuyundi, Kenya. He slept on banana leaves on the floor of his village hut. And he didn't own a pair of shoes until he was 15 years old. But that didn't stop him from changing his future.
This Easter, a Focus on Principles of Peace from the Prince of Peace (Thursday 30 March, 2017)Church’s 2017 Easter initiative is an invitation to find peace through Christ.
Down Syndrome and the Worth of Life (Wednesday 22 March, 2017)Sadly, people with Down syndrome have essentially become extinct across much of Europe because woman abort life after discovering their baby has Down syndrome. We strip a child from their God-given potential when we, as a society, accept abortion as “health care.”
How Much Evidence is There of God? (Wednesday 22 March, 2017)Have you found His signature everywhere that it exists?
LDS Church to Create New BYU Pathway Global Education Program (Tuesday 7 February, 2017)The First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has announced the creation of a global higher-education organization, BYU–Pathway Worldwide. The institution will have responsibility for all online certificate and degree programs offered by the Church Educational System.
To Eat or Not To Eat: A Guide to Food Safety After a Power Outage (Tuesday 7 February, 2017)Food in a full freezer will stay frozen about two days. Food in a freezer that is only half full may stay frozen only one day. It's facts like these that will help you know what to keep and what to toss after a power outage.
Where Can You Best Learn about God’s Plan of Salvation? (Tuesday 7 February, 2017)King Lamoni taught that God had sent His people angelic messengers so that “the plan of salvation might be made known unto them as well as unto future generations” (Alma 24:14). This prophecy concerning future generations learning of the Plan of Salvation has been meaningfully fulfilled in the preservation and publication of the Book of Mormon.
Faithfully Engaging the Immigration Debate in the Age of Trump (Thursday 2 February, 2017)Catholic, Jewish and Mormon leaders have long been outspoken on immigration policy reform, advocating for a path to legal status for undocumented Americans sometimes in spite of disagreements with the people in their pews.
Remembering the Man Who Carved the Nauvoo Temple Oxen (Sunday 29 January, 2017)When my mom passed away, The Friend magazine happened to be running a story about John Carling, who Brigham Young had asked to carve the pattern for the 12 oxen that held up the font in the Nauvoo Temple. At Mom’s burial in the Fillmore cemetery, one of her granddaughters had the magazine with her and wanted to find John’s gravestone.
A Partner in the Cause of Peace (Sunday 29 January, 2017)Countries with more religious freedom have more peace. And countries with less religious freedom have less peace. So say a number of studies. This might seem counterintuitive.
LDS Church Issues Statement after Trump Orders Ban on Refugees (Sunday 29 January, 2017)Amid the controversy swirling around President Trump's executive order banning refugees from seven Muslim countries, the LDS Church issued a statement late Saturday night urging solutions that relieve refugee suffering.
Why Is Lehi Depicted as Being Similar to Moses? (Thursday 26 January, 2017)Throughout 1 Nephi, and perhaps most clearly in the account of Lehi’s farewell speech to his family, Lehi is depicted as being like the prophet Moses. The fact that Nephi portrays his father as a Moses figure demonstrates that Nephi was in touch with ancient Israelite traditions that were popular in Jerusalem at the time.
LDS Church Provides Safe Place for Muslims to Pray (Sunday 22 January, 2017)After arson destroyed a mosque in Bellevue, Washington, a local stake offered use of a large classroom so members of the Islamic Center of Eastside could have a place to pray until they find a new space.
Missionaries Participate in New Orleans Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Celebrations (Monday 16 January, 2017)Missionaries from the Louisiana Baton Rouge Mission participated in a memorial service and marched in the New Orleans Annual Martin Luther King, Jr Day Parade.
Two Mormon Apostles to Attend 2017 US Presidential Inauguration (Sunday 15 January, 2017)Inauguration a time to reaffirm enduring principles that have sustained the US, Elder Christofferson says.
Religious Freedom Advocates are Divided over How to Address LGBT Rights (Thursday 12 January, 2017)Major players in the ongoing battle over religious freedom and LGBT rights will meet at Yale University this weekend. They'll discuss the current state of conscience rights and LGBT protections and debate what legislation is needed to balance those competing interests.
The Incredible Power of One (Monday 9 January, 2017)My dear friend and next-door neighbor, Ellen Burt, died after a brutal 6-month battle with cancer. The day after her funeral, her husband, Jerry, brought me Ellen’s two wheelchairs, saying he figured I could use them in India. I was thrilled to get them and thanked him profusely.
Millions Shall Know Brother Joseph Again: New book of Joseph Smith Quotes (Monday 9 January, 2017)Our world is awash in the need for love, kindness, forgiveness, empathy, understanding, and Christ-like living. Joseph Smith, under the tutorial direction of Heavenly beings, became one of the brightest lights to ever grace the earth. He spoke with wisdom, insight, and grace on many topics that are becoming increasingly relevant for our world today.
Of Fantasy and Faith: LDS Artist James C. Christensen Dies at 74 (Monday 9 January, 2017)Wise fools and fish on leashes. Dragons and dwarves. Boats and beetles. Flying pigs and goblin princesses. The imaginative images of myths, fables and fantasies depicted by James C. Christensen will live on in myriad mediums, despite the death of the artist recognized for his works of fantasy and faith.
Inspiration for Actually Improving Your Health This Year (Sunday 8 January, 2017)If you are struggling with getting 2017 kicked off in a healthy way, here’s hope, three easy motivations and inspiring resources to help you say good-bye to holiday indulging immediately.
6 Alarming Findings in House Panel’s Planned Parenthood Probe (Sunday 8 January, 2017)Planned Parenthood affiliates profited by transferring parts of aborted babies to outside organizations in violation of the law, a special House panel has concluded after a yearlong investigation.
Lesson of 2016: BYU Will Continue to be Targeted for Claims of Conscience (Monday 26 December, 2016)It’s hard to know just how much effect the pressure from LGBT activists had on the October decision of the Big 12 Athletic Conference to not expand its membership to include two additional teams, including Brigham Young University. What 2016 unfortunately showed Mormons is that the BYU will continue be to targeted when it comes to making constitutionally protected claims of conscience in the public square (and NCAA playing field).
Discovering the Word of Wisdom: A Key to Success in the New Year (Monday 26 December, 2016)If every day can be a fresh start, the new year is a double fresh start for all of us. Making improvements to our diet is one of the best ways to enjoy a fresh start. Here are some inspiration to get you started.
Essays on Mormon History Find New Visibility in Official App, Sunday School (Monday 26 December, 2016)Most Mormons haven't read the 11 clear-eyed essays published by their church on 11 complex topics in the faith's history and doctrine, like polygamy and the differing versions of the First Vision. Many haven't even heard about them, but that's about to change, beginning in January with additions to the Sunday School lessons in 20,000 congregations in North and South America.
Seven Patterns of Prayer from the Prophet Joseph (Thursday 22 December, 2016)The Prophet Joseph Smith taught us many things including powerful patterns of prayer that can help us break through to the heavens and obtain answers from the Lord for us and our families.
Mormon Tabernacle Choir to Sing at US Presidential Inauguration (Thursday 22 December, 2016)Will be seventh appearance at an inauguration.
Joseph Fielding’s Spiritual Legacy in Britain (Tuesday 20 December, 2016)Joseph, Mary and Mercy Fielding came from a rich spiritual family. Their parents - John Fielding (1759-1836) and Rachel (1767-1828) - were both born, christened and married in Halifax, Yorkshire. Their sister Ann Fielding (Matthews) wrote a lengthy article about their mother in the Wesleyan Methodist magazine. Here are several excerpt from that article.
Resources for 2017 Mutual Theme Now Online (Tuesday 20 December, 2016)This year’s theme is James 1:5–6: “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.” Here are materials to use.
Words that Don’t Mean What they Used To (Tuesday 20 December, 2016)I refuse to rehash this circus we’ve experienced, but find it notable to slay some of the words that have contributed to our sideways talk. Either get rid of the words or find a common definition so we can actually talk to each other in a meaningful way.
Your Hardest Family Question: My new husband isn’t interested in sexual intimacy (Thursday 15 December, 2016)After months of marriage, my husband and I have not shared complete marital intimacy. Granted, we are an older couple. Eventually I realized that he has erectile dysfunction. He has neither desire nor intention of treating it. Am I doomed to live in a sexless marriage?
LDS Church gifts $1 million to Mormon studies at USU just as professor moves to BYU for a year (Thursday 15 December, 2016)Guess what it would take to keep Utah State's only full-time Mormon studies professor. Would you believe $1 million? How about $3 million?
CNN: Did Donald Trump need an apology from Mitt Romney? (Thursday 15 December, 2016)As President-elect Donald Trump considered Mitt Romney for secretary of state, Trump wanted one thing Romney wouldn't give him: an apology.
Washington Post: Why the Political World Needs More Mitt Romneys (Wednesday 14 December, 2016)Conventional wisdom says the 2012 GOP presidential nominee lost his dignity by begging for a job in the Trump administration. I see it a different way.
Photographing the Holy City (Wednesday 14 December, 2016)How do you capture the ancient nature of Jerusalem? Today’s city boasts a million population (greater Jerusalem) and modern structures and buildings that just don’t bespeak the feeling of ancient. So, how do you look into the past?
George Washington was Right about Moving On (Sunday 4 December, 2016)Last week I stood at Mount Vernon and realized the many times Washington taught the nation, how to say goodbye, and where America’s power lies and how to truly lead.
Discovering the Word of Wisdom: God Ordained Grain as the Staff of Life (Monday 28 November, 2016)Understanding the foods ordained by God in verses 10–11 of D&C 89 is helpful as we turn to verses 14–17 which describe the role of grains in the human diet. Since God has already told us that wholesome grains are ordained for our use, what additional point is He trying to make in the following verse?
The Quest for a Common Moral Framework (Monday 14 November, 2016)Can a society of diverse religious, political and philosophical opinions agree on the fundamentals of right and wrong?
Family Research Council Launches New Website Promoting Military Religious Freedom (Monday 14 November, 2016)Family Research Council, in addition to a coalition of partner organizations, announces the launch of their newly-updated website, militaryfreedom.org, a resource on all topics related to military religious freedom. The website includes resources on how you can help.
Discovering the Word of Wisdom: Are Fish Ordained by God? (Monday 14 November, 2016)The Lord mentions an appropriate use for beasts and fowls and wild animals, but what about reptiles, insects, and fish? Most of us have no desire to consume insects or reptiles, but many of us love fish. So, what does the Word of Wisdom say about it?
British Isles LDS Church History and Literary Tour Summer 2017! (Monday 7 November, 2016)Do you want to have the time of your life in the land of your forefathers? Yes, we are doing this tour again! It was a roaring success this past summer. Now, come join Scot and Maurine Proctor for the Ultimate British Isles Church History and Literary Tour this June 27 – July 8, 2017.
After All is Said and Done – What Gets Done? (Sunday 6 November, 2016)We are mercifully coming to the end of an election cycle filled with white-hot, red-meat rhetoric relentlessly spewed by pundits across the political spectrum until they were blue in the face. It is time to return to what matters most for our nation and for our communities.
To Remember and To Honor (Sunday 6 November, 2016)Today is Election Eve for the most unusual Presidential election the United States has ever seen. It is also the week we celebrate Veterans Day. We can strengthen our nation by strengthening our families as we learn more about our Veterans and honoring them now. Here are 5 Family Home Evening ideas for families of all ages to help and guide us in these troubling times.
Mormons Determined to Give White House to Clinton, and Supreme Court to Left (Wednesday 26 October, 2016)The state of Utah is historically a solid red state, its heavily Mormon population identifying best with the pro-Christian, pro-life, limited government and spending philosophies of the Republican party. This election year, however, the voters of the state of Utah appear to be enamored of the idea of a protest vote.
New Law Turns Pro-Life Centers into Abortion-Referral Agencies (Wednesday 26 October, 2016)On October 14, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a California statute that forces pro-life pregnancy resource centers (PRCs) to recommend abortions. The ruling allowed the state to enforce this unjust law.
Remembering Where the Keys Are (Wednesday 26 October, 2016)
To sign up for Meridian’s Free Newsletter, please CLICK HERE I love piano music. Don’t we all? And when a gifted musician plays a beautiful piece, I’m always impressed by how
The Power of Kitchen-Table Conversations (Wednesday 19 October, 2016)The solution to any problem begins when someone says, “Let’s talk.” Many of the greatest moments in our nation’s history began not in the marbled halls of a government building, but in conversations around a kitchen table.
Protecting Religious Freedom a ‘Provocative’ Challenge (Wednesday 19 October, 2016)In his symposium-opening remarks, the German-born Professor Bielefeldt called freedom of religion “a most fascinating task.” Some in academic circles have dismissed it as “an impossibility.” Not true, said the professor — but it is a “highly provocative” issue for governments, religious communities and societies.
Why Did Jesus Allude to the Priestly Blessing in Numbers 6? (Tuesday 18 October, 2016)In 3 Nephi 19, the record recounts a remarkable experience that the people had with Jesus Christ as He prayed with and blessed them. The description of what Jesus did when He blessed those gathered parallels certain words in the “Priestly Blessing” that God commanded Aaron, the high priest, to pronounce upon the people of Israel in Numbers 6:23–27.
Utahn Pleads Guilty to Fraud Scheme, Impersonating LDS Officials (Tuesday 18 October, 2016)A once lauded Utah County businessman has pleaded guilty in two separate fraud schemes, including one where he impersonated top LDS officials to lure investors.
UNESCO Calls Israel ‘Occupying Power’ and Rewrites Jewish History (Monday 17 October, 2016)This week, UNESCO doubled down on its efforts to appease Palestinian complaints by adopting a resolution that condemns Israel on its policies regarding Jerusalem and deliberately downplays Jewish history with the Temple Mount and the Western Wall.
LDS Perspectives: Millennials and the Book of Mormon (Monday 17 October, 2016)This is the first podcast in the LDS Perspectives' Young Scholars Series. In these episodes, listeners are introduced to young scholars who are presenting scholarship that belies their years and formal educational training. This week Blake Dalton interviews Neal Rappleye.
Discovering the Word of Wisdom: Three Foods Ordained by God (Monday 17 October, 2016)In verses 10–17 of Section 89, the Lord describes the foods He prepared for our use. Of all the ways He could have introduced these foods to us, He chose to introduce them by teaching a profound doctrine: these foods were specifically ordained for our use by our Savior.
College Political Correctness–Free Exchange of Ideas at Risk (Wednesday 5 October, 2016)There is no barbed wire around our campuses, nor armed guards keeping unwelcome ideas out. So there is no “iron curtain.” But there is a curtain, and it has its effect.
Hope For Frustrated Families Everywhere (Wednesday 5 October, 2016)Sometimes, no matter how diligently parents try to teach their children and unify their families, they are met with opposition. But there is hope!
Why Did Jesus Deliver a Version of the Sermon on the Mount at the Temple in Bountiful? (Wednesday 5 October, 2016)During Christ’s visit in the Book of Mormon, he presented teachings that closely resemble what he taught in the Sermon on the Mount, as recorded in the Gospel of Matthew. Some have argued that the similarities between the Sermon on the Mount and the “Sermon at the Temple” in Bountiful are evidence that Joseph Smith simply plagiarized from the Bible.
Sexuality is Part of Your Divine Nature (Monday 3 October, 2016)Many women struggle with the sexual relationship in their marriages. They don't see sexuality as part of their divine identity, and struggle to fully embrace and develop that aspect of their marriage relationship.
LDS Perspectives Podcast: LDS Artwork Revisited (Monday 3 October, 2016)Russell Stevenson and Anthony Sweat discuss how artists have helped shape perceptions of LDS scriptures and historical events over the past seventy years — from Arnold Friberg to South Park.
LDS Church Responds to Leaked Videos of Briefings for Mormon Apostles (Monday 3 October, 2016)The LDS Church and a former George W. Bush Cabinet member responded Sunday afternoon to the unauthorized leak of 15 videos of briefings provided to the church's Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.
Public Invited to Tour First Mormon Temple in Connecticut (Tuesday 27 September, 2016)The public is invited to tour the newly completed Hartford Connecticut Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the first Mormon temple in the Constitution State.
What Caused the Darkness and Destruction in the 34th Year? (Tuesday 27 September, 2016)In the thirty and fourth year, Mormon carefully documented “a great and terrible tempest … terrible thunder … exceedingly sharp lightnings” and “thick darkness,” even a “vapor of darkness” which could be felt, and prevented the lighting of fire. This had been predicted in detail by prophets such as Nephi son of Lehi, Zenos, and Samuel the Lamanite.
New Podcast Features Ordinary Mormons Having Extraordinary Conversations (Thursday 22 September, 2016)Introducing the podcast that enables the curious and the serious learner to multi-task their way to greater knowledge and understanding of the Gospel. We hope to offer a place for mainstream members to learn more context about history, seek more depth to doctrine, and gain more support with cultural challenges. Click here to listen to the first episode.
For Dear Ones With Cancer: 10 Simple Ways To Serve (Sunday 18 September, 2016)Is a dear one in your circle battling cancer or a serious illness? Here are ten loving ways to serve both them and their caregivers.
Utah Ranked Happiest State in America (Sunday 18 September, 2016)WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across 28 key metrics, ranging from emotional health to income levels to sports participation rates to rank the happiest states in America. Utah came out on top, read more to find out why.
The Hazards of a Home Near Sodom (Tuesday 13 September, 2016)First Lot pitched his tent toward Sodom, and the next thing he did was move on in.
How to Help Your Children Keep Their Standards When They Are Away From Home (Wednesday 7 September, 2016)Parents painstakingly teach morals, principles, values and good judgment to their growing children in hopes that their virtues will be protected and their standards upheld throughout their lives. Yet, day after day youth are tested in social situations. How can we help them pass the test?
Are Your Talents Tripping You Up? (Wednesday 7 September, 2016)Can you have a little too much of a good thing?
What Real Families and French Cooking Have in Common (Tuesday 6 September, 2016)We’ve all got a family in some form or another, right? What’s yours like? Calm? Relaxing? No trouble communicating? No trouble sharing? Family vacations the stuff of legends? Mine neither. Here's why that's ok.
Mormon Leaders Visit Flood-Ravaged Louisiana (Tuesday 6 September, 2016)President Nelson, Elder Ballard, Sister Marriott and others minister to flood victims.
‘Unhealthy Competition’: Valedictorians so Scary that School may Stop Honoring Them (Thursday 1 September, 2016)A public school district near Louisville, Kentucky has come down with a bad case of what I call “Participation Trophy Syndrome” – or PTS. The Greater Clark County School Board in Jeffersonville, Indiana, is considering a plan to eliminate the valedictorian system because it creates “unhealthy competition,” according to Supt. Andrew Melin.
In Russia, LDS Church Defends 6 Deported Former Missionaries (Wednesday 31 August, 2016)LDS Church leaders in Russia have challenged the deportation of six American volunteers from the country in a statement on a church website.
Gene Wilder and the Power of Laughter (Wednesday 31 August, 2016)Rather than having a moment of silence for Mr. Wilder, I would instead suggest a more appropriate tribute of a moment of laughter.
What Labels Do You Wear? (Wednesday 31 August, 2016)How do you self-identify-- Is it accurate? Are you unfairly labeling yourself?
Whatever Happened to Telling the Truth? (Tuesday 30 August, 2016)Victor Davis Hanson laments in this important essay about why Americans excuse those in the public square who lie to us and “why today we assume that lying is simply a narrative, not a window to one’s character.”
Official Statement on Mormon Missionaries Badly Injured in Car Accident in Sierra Leone (Sunday 28 August, 2016)Each of the people in the mission van received injuries, some quite severe. Two of the missionaries have been transported by air ambulance to Ghana for more extensive care. Two are recovering in a hospital in Sierra Leone, and one has been released and is recovering well.
Mormon Missionaries, Members Safe and Well After Major Italian Earthquake (Wednesday 24 August, 2016)All Mormon missionaries in Italy and all LDS Church members there are alive and well after a powerful earthquake killed at least 120 people in central Italy early Wednesday morning.
A Triple Whammy About the Creation (Wednesday 24 August, 2016)I just learned how to multiply my appreciation for God’s handiwork.
University of Utah Names Historic Building After President Monson (Wednesday 24 August, 2016)A historic mansion in downtown Salt Lake City has been renamed the Thomas S. Monson Center after the current president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Almost Everything the Media Tells You About Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Is Wrong (Monday 22 August, 2016)A major new report, published today in the journal The New Atlantis, challenges the leading narratives that the media has pushed regarding sexual orientation and gender identity.
The Great Regression (Tuesday 16 August, 2016)We are going backward at warp speed.
The Press Tours Philly’s New Mormon Temple (Friday 12 August, 2016)A press group toured the Philadelphia Temple and here is one blogger's report from The Huffington Post.
CNN: Clinton, in Mormon pitch, compares Trump to religious persecutors (Thursday 11 August, 2016)Hillary Clinton, sensing apprehension from Utah Republicans for Donald Trump's presidential campaign, pitched Mormon voters in a Wednesday op-ed published by the Deseret News, a paper owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
How Realistic are Nephite Battle Strategies? (Thursday 11 August, 2016)The Book of Mormon’s rich accounts of warfare in the first century BC contain some of the most exciting and interesting material in the thousand-year narrative. The stories are replete with battlefield strategies, various military maneuvers, topographical awareness, and even covert, late-night operations.
The Best Place for Children to Spend the Summer (Wednesday 10 August, 2016)In these modern times, children’s lives are full of busy schedules, play dates, appointments, check-off lists, assignments, and extra curricular activities. We all want what's best for our children. So, where should they actually be spending their summer days?
Congress Must Protect Religious Liberty Now More than Ever (Wednesday 10 August, 2016)Since the Supreme Court ruled for the plaintiffs in Roe v. Wade, both federal and state governments have introduced a series of laws protecting religious individuals from having to participate in abortion if it violates their consciences.
Why did Moroni Change His Mind About Exchanging Prisoners with Ammoron? (Wednesday 10 August, 2016)After retaking the city of Mulek and fortifying Bountiful, Moroni received a written message from Ammoron, who desired to exchange prisoners. Moroni accepted Ammoron’s offer. Yet when Ammoron gladly agreed to these terms, Moroni declared, “Behold, I will not exchange prisoners with Ammoron save he will withdraw his purpose."
Discovering the Word of Wisdom: Distinguishing Between Doctrines, Principles, and Applications (Monday 8 August, 2016)Throughout our history, we Mormons have debated what is and is not proscribed by the Word of Wisdom. We know alcohol, tobacco, coffee, and tea are proscribed, but what about red wine when cooking? What about decaffeinated coffee? Sometimes trying to understand D&C 89 is like reading those tea leaves — not easy! The question arises: why didn't God just give it to us straight?
Death Dive! Comet Plunges into the Sun at Mind-Blowing Speed (Monday 8 August, 2016)A comet with a death wish met a truly fiery end Aug. 4 when it was destroyed by the sun after diving toward the star at a truly jaw-dropping speed. It is one of the brightest sungrazing comet events in over two decades, one scientist says.
Media Quiet About Dismissed Charges Against Planned Parenthood Whistleblowers (Thursday 4 August, 2016)When pro-life journalists who revealed Planned Parenthood's organ harvesting were charged, media loved it. When charges were dropped, the media went quiet.
Why Would Pahoran Not Allow the Law to Be Amended? (Thursday 4 August, 2016)Soon after Pahoran had been appointed as the chief judge, the Book of Mormon reports that “there began to be a contention among the people … for behold, there were a part of the people who desired that a few particular points of the law should be altered”.
Angel Moroni Statue Tops Meridian Idaho Temple (Thursday 21 July, 2016)Crane operators and construction workers hoisted the 13-foot-6-inch angel Moroni statue to the top of the Meridian Idaho Temple July 20, 2016.
BYU Named 5th Best University in America by Money Magazine (Wednesday 20 July, 2016)After being named 15th on last year's rankings, BYU has jumped 10 spots to rub shoulders with the likes of Princeton and Harvard as one of the top 5 universities in America according to Money Magazine.
No Coup for Christians in Turkey (Wednesday 20 July, 2016)The failed coup attempt against the government of Turkish President Recip Erdogan will have several negative effects and consequences for the people of Turkey.
Why Was Corianton So Concerned About The Resurrection? (Wednesday 20 July, 2016)After censuring Corianton for his immoral and detrimental conduct, Alma perceived that his son’s “mind [was] worried concerning the resurrection of the dead”. Why would the son of a prophet struggle to understand one of the most fundamental doctrines of the gospel?
Your Hardest Family Question: My new husband is jealous of my memories of my late husband (Thursday 14 July, 2016)My late husband died young, just 45 years old, after a long battle with cancer. We had been married 25 years and there are a million tiny reminders of him everywhere; in a song, a wildflower, six grandchildren. The list is endless. Now I am afraid to shed a tear or show the pain of his loss. I am afraid of hurting my new husband's feelings.
Why was Alma Converted? (Thursday 14 July, 2016)No other event had a greater impact on Alma’s life than the transformative three days he spent racked with torment after being rebuked by an angel. The themes of that experience permeate his sermons, and at least three different accounts of it survive in the Book of Mormon.
LDS Church welfare, humanitarian efforts average $40 million per year, apostle says (Thursday 14 July, 2016)In a lecture given last month at the University of Oxford, Elder Dallin H. Oaks said that each year The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints spends about $40 million on welfare, humanitarian and other LDS Church-sponsored projects around the world and has done so for more than 30 years. That would account for approximately $1.2 billion on welfare and humanitarian efforts over the past 30 years.
Is Trump a Blooming Idiot or a Budding Genius? (Tuesday 12 July, 2016)From the first day Donald Trump announced his run for the Presidency of the USA, I questioned his message discipline. In the year that has followed I’ve seen two notable actions: one from him and one from his detractors.
Mormon Missionaries to Stay in Russia Despite New Law (Sunday 10 July, 2016)Mormon missionaries will remain in Russia despite the country's new anti-terrorism law, which will put greater restrictions on religious work starting later this month. In a statement issued Friday, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints said that missionaries will respect a measure that Russian President Vladimir Putin signed into law this week.
Why Did the Ammonites Refuse to Enter War? (Wednesday 6 July, 2016)This is the second half of the article entitled "The Ammonites Were Not Pacifists." Why, if they weren’t pacifists, did they still eschew war. Since an attitude of pacifism doesn’t explain this, what does?
Sapporo Japan Temple to Open for Public Tours (Tuesday 5 July, 2016)The First Presidency of the Church has announced the open house will begin on Friday, July 8, and continue through Saturday, July 23, 2016, excluding Sundays.
President Nelson Shares What the Book of Mormon Is and What It Is Not (Sunday 3 July, 2016)In a recent seminar for new Mission Presidents given at the MTC, President Russell M. Nelson expressed the desire to share a message of "real worth" to the couples soon to depart for the mission field to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The important topic he chose to explore was the Book of Mormon.
Holocaust Escape Tunnel Found: Prisoners Dug with Spoons to Escape Nazis (Thursday 30 June, 2016)A tunnel in Lithuania that allowed Jewish prisoners to escape to freedom has been discovered at an infamous location called Ponar, decades after they used it to flee the Nazis one night in April 1944.
PBS Video Calls Mormon Welfare System Huge, Impressive (Wednesday 29 June, 2016)The piece included interviews with a bishop, a Relief Society president, service missionaries and leaders of various departments of the welfare system of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
VIDEO: Independence Day Music from Jenny Oaks Baker and Family Four (Wednesday 29 June, 2016)Brighten up your summer and your fourth of July with this upbeat taste of Americana from Jenny Oaks Baker and her children.
Air Force Base Silences Veteran for Using the Word ‘God’ in a Retirement Speech (Sunday 26 June, 2016)Uniformed airmen forcibly removed an Air Force veteran from a military base because he invoked God in a speech for a retirement ceremony, according to the legal group that represents him. They escorted Oscar Rodriguez Jr. from the “flag-folding” ceremony as the 33-year veteran began his remarks at Travis Air Force Base in California.
Why Did Mormon Give So Many Details About Geography? (Sunday 26 June, 2016)Practically since the Book of Mormon was published, its geography has been the subject of discussion and debate. John L. Sorenson, one of the foremost students on the subject, identified over 600 passages relevant to geography.
Freemasonry and the Latter-day Saint Temple Endowment (Thursday 23 June, 2016)Just seven weeks after rising to the level of Master Mason and in the very same space that the Masonic rites had been performed, Joseph Smith introduced the endowment. The endowment presented teachings, ordinances, and covenants to participants in a format that closely resembled a few parts of the ceremony used in Freemasonry.
When Winston Churchill Investigated Mormon Missionary Practices (Wednesday 22 June, 2016)In July 1910, Mormon missionaries were expelled from Germany amid allegations they were recruiting women to become polygamous wives in Utah. That move prompted the British Parliament to wonder whether England should follow suit. The politician assigned to oversee the investigation? A young man named Winston Churchill.
Time Magazine: Intimacy Addiction Looks Similar to Drug Addiction (Monday 28 July, 2014)
Watching porn triggers similar brain activity as drug exposure, study says Editor’s Note: In a world that too often seems to embrace pornography it is refreshing to see Time magazine,
Meridian Readers to the Rescue in Carlton Complex Fire (Monday 28 July, 2014)
A fire has raged in the Carlton Complex area of Washington State burning over 400 square miles and 300 homes. Sylvia Hammond, a stake Relief Society president in the Carlton
Near Collision of Massive Solar Flare with Earth (Friday 25 July, 2014)
A massive coronal mass ejection (CME), a giant solar flare, narrowly missed the earth two years ago on July 23, 2012. Physicist Daniel Baker said that “if the eruption had
Choice Seeks to End Poverty (Friday 25 July, 2014)
Beginning this year, Meridian is teaming with CHOICE Humanitarian on a project to eliminate extreme poverty in a region of Nepal that includes 100,000 people. Many of you have already
Risks of Belief in Chance Evolution of our Bodies (Wednesday 15 May, 2013)
During the Sunday School lesson on the law of consecration and tithing, we studied Elder D. Todd Christofferson’s October 2010 conference talk entitled: “Reflections on a Consecrated Life.” One passage
Great Activity Packets for General Conference (Thursday 4 April, 2013)
When it comes to resources for family home evening, Sunday School, scouting, primary, youth activities, or Relief Society, more and more Latter-day Saints are turning to Sugardoodle, an increasingly popular
2012 Calendar Alignment Catastrophe? (Friday 7 December, 2012)
As the much publicized and debated December 21, 2012 date arrives, both scientists and Mayan descendants caution against worries of a giant catastrophe happening in a few days. “NASA scientists
Bubbleworld and Me (Monday 12 November, 2012)
Back around 1985 or early 1986, when I was beginning to compose the lengthy essay that would ultimately become the core of my book Offenders for a Word: How Anti-Mormons
Magic in the Air (Monday 22 November, 2010)
First day of Forgotten Carols rehearsals and I’m a happy guy. Reunited with great friends anticipating the best season ever and already having way too much fun. As we reviewed
Chores (Monday 8 November, 2010)
Three days of chores and I’m feeling “chore’d out”. Don’t get me wrong. There’s a great feeling of satisfaction getting an oversized load of stuff hauled off to the dump,
The Gift of the Nap (Monday 1 November, 2010)
I did something wonderful today. I gave my wife and my daughter and my granddaughter a gift. I gave them a nap. Put them in their napping spots, closed the
The Interview: I Talk Too Much (Wednesday 6 October, 2010)
I was interviewed today. Utah Valley Magazine has been around ten years and they asked if they could do an article on me for the November/December edition. The writer was