The Amy Coney Barrett Confirmation: A Bright Spot of News in Challenging Times (Tuesday 10 November, 2020)Supreme Court Justice, Amy Coney Barrett, is a woman who has undoubtedly benefited from the efforts and legacy of women like Ruth Bader Ginsburg. While Barrett can thank the work of female trailblazers, it is her own effort and intellect that qualified her for the Supreme Court. Though she is an example of female empowerment, she breaks with modern feminist orthodoxy - she is pro-life.
Snuggles Not Struggles (Tuesday 10 November, 2020)Can we consistently pass the test to be loving and civil in situations where we are tempted to be less than loving or civil? Can we “reach across the aisle”, not only in Congress, but in church, at the grocery store, and everywhere? Can we be forever kind to those not of our preferred political kind? Most importantly, can we be continually kind at home?
Why Did Jesus Say, “Never Have I Showed Myself unto Man”? (Tuesday 10 November, 2020)Regarding the significance of a sacred encounter with the Brother of Jared, Jesus declared, “never have I showed myself unto man whom I have created, for never has man believed in me as thou hast”. This statement has perplexed many readers and scholars of the Book of Mormon. Does it mean that none of the righteous men and women who lived before the brother of Jared were visited in person by Jesus Christ?
Why Would God Want to Break Our Hearts? (Wednesday 4 November, 2020)I used to wonder why the Lord required the sacrifice of a broken heart, why He would want us to wade through sorrow. Now I believe that the very purpose of our adversities, even of our Abrahamic tests, is to break our hearts in the precise way that makes them open to the Lord’s light and guidance.
Has Isolation Created a Loneliness Epidemic? (Wednesday 4 November, 2020)Are you lonely? Do you know someone who’s lonely? This article is for you.
Church Begins Limited Missionary Assignments Outside Countries of Origin (Wednesday 4 November, 2020)At this time, the Church has begun sending a very limited number of missionaries to assignments outside their home countries. This process is deliberate and cautious. Because of the ongoing pandemic, all missionary travel is dependent upon local conditions and air travel restrictions, and some missionaries may not depart for several months.
Turning Civil Tension Into Church Growth (Tuesday 3 November, 2020)Planting seeds is more important than winning arguments.
Why Joseph Smith’s Visit with Martin Van Buren was the Most Important Trip of His Life (Tuesday 3 November, 2020)We have heard the famous story of Joseph Smith’s visit to President Martin Van Buren, but very few know how greatly the prophet was impacted by the event, nor that Congress actually held a hearing concerning the plight of the Mormons in Missouri with results that to this day would curl your toes.
Want to Learn about Business? Study the Parables (Tuesday 3 November, 2020)There’s an old saying that cobblers see only the shoes on others, dentists focus on teeth, and tailors only look at clothes. As a businessman, I tend to see business principles wherever I look, including when I read parables in the scriptures.
Will We Have Our Pets in Heaven? (Wednesday 28 October, 2020)How do we treat the other creatures God created?
Is Your Path to ‘Success’ Clear Or Confusing? (Wednesday 28 October, 2020)“Do what you can with all you have, wherever you are.” Teddy Roosevelt said that more than a century ago, long before Twitter feeds and Instagram memes. Today, when some people still get sucked into the vortex of victimization and blame, the path to success—and even the definition of success—seems to be up for debate.
Come Follow Me for Sunday School: “I Speak unto You as If Ye Were Present”, Mormon 7-9 (Wednesday 28 October, 2020)And so it was with neither friends, nor family, nor hardly any hope to speak of at all, Moroni penned the words or Mormon chapters 7-9. As we spend some time with them, I invite you to remember the harrowing circumstances in which they were written and take hope that, no matter what damage the pandemic or anything else may have done to you, your family, your finances, or anything else, there is always room for hope, for truth, for comfort, for Christ.
Lessons from a pandemic: A letter to my children (Tuesday 27 October, 2020)Someday, you will tell your children about the year of the coronavirus. It has been a long six months, filled with upheaval, uncertainty, suffering and strife. But it has also been instructive. When you tell them what it was like to have the world turned upside down in a week, I hope you’ll remember the important lessons it taught us.
President Dallin H. Oaks tells BYU audience to ‘heed our prophet’s call’ to end racism (Tuesday 27 October, 2020)“Of course, Black lives matter," said President Oaks, "That is an eternal truth all reasonable people should support. Unfortunately, that persuasive banner was sometimes used or understood to stand for other things that do not command universal support."
This is Not Your Granny’s Food Storage (Tuesday 27 October, 2020)Food storage was often characterized by worldly critics as eccentric — just steps away from building a nuclear bomb shelter under your house and stocking it with guns, ammo and dehydrated rations. The past seven months have proven just how valuable food storage really is and inspired many who previously thought it foolish to begin preparing. We have learned food storage is an individual family need. But, where to begin?
test 14 (Tuesday 27 October, 2020)
Quick test 4 (Tuesday 27 October, 2020)
“You all are not alone”: On the Anniversary of the Tree of Life Synagogue Shooting (Tuesday 27 October, 2020)It was the evening of October 27, 2018, just hours after Robert Bowers had carried an assault rifle into the Tree of Life synagogue, opened fire, and brutally murdered eleven worshippers simply because they were Jews. To mourn the victims as well as to begin to come to terms with this tragedy themselves, members of Durham’s Judea Reform Congregation were holding a special prayer vigil in their sanctuary. I sat on the side, in the back, hoping to help somehow, not knowing how deeply that service would affect me.
Voting Your Values as America Faces a Major Crossroads (Monday 26 October, 2020)As the United States faces a major crossroads in political ideologies in this election cycle, it is well-worth remembering the decades of counsel by Church leaders on protecting fundamental freedoms through Constitutional government. This vital counsel is intertwined with the great prophecies regarding Zion (the New Jerusalem) being built upon the American continent as stated in the 10th Article of Faith.
How is The Current Pandemic Changing The World, Your World, and the Church World? (Monday 26 October, 2020)This topic may seem like a departure from the theme of “exciting doctrines of the Restoration.” But I wanted to change things up a bit, and to make the point that the Restoration is not something that happened, but something that is happening.
Come Follow Me Podcast #42: “I Would That I Could Persuade All … to Repent”, Mormon 1-6 (Thursday 22 October, 2020)Every time I read the Book of Mormon and get to these chapters, I always hope that the Nephites will repent and that their civilization and people will be spared—and then it happens every time! They are destroyed. We can’t change their outcomes, but how about ours? Is there a message in here for us, right now, in our day?
Is the Restoration about Salvation or Exaltation, and are You a Perfectible Entity? (Wednesday 21 October, 2020)What does “salvation” mean to the Christian world? And what does it mean in the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ? And how does salvation differ from exaltation?
Need Help? Don’t Be Afraid to Ask (Wednesday 21 October, 2020)Now, perhaps more than ever, the success of organizations (not to mention entire industries) requires open and honest collaboration between individuals and teams. That may sound simple enough. But it requires a skill that eludes some people: asking for help.
Capitalism – A Dirty Old Word That Means … Creativity? (Monday 19 October, 2020)Under socialism’s tut-tuts, pursuing gain is greed. Socialists believe people should own no more money than immediate needs require because if someone has more, it means someone else must have less. They fail to see how pooling it stimulates creativity and increases the wealth pie.
Unique Details We Learn From the Different Accounts of Joseph Smith’s First Vision 123 (Monday 19 October, 2020)Joseph Smith’s First Vision is one of the most pivotal moments in human history—perhaps the greatest event since the resurrection of the Savior. Most of us are aware that the Prophet Joseph Smith, himself, recorded his First Vision on four different occasions, and that several of his closest friends who heard him speak also wrote down what they heard him say. Let me illustrate why reading more than one account could be important.
Sharing Stories about Hard Things can Change Lives (Monday 19 October, 2020)There is great power in sharing stories. Let’s take it a step further and say sharing stories, especially those about hard or sensitive subjects can be life-changing. Here’s why: You never know when your story may help someone (especially in your own family) overcome an obstacle in their own life.
How To Love a Disobedient or Wayward Child (Sunday 18 October, 2020)It’s never too late to learn to control yourself and to repair or improve relationships. We can’t ever give up on becoming who we are meant to become or helping our children meet the measure of their potentials, too. This is what I suggest parents to help their children and themselves have changes of heart and improve their relationships.
Why a Column on Resilience? (Sunday 18 October, 2020)Little did I know when I’d been working towards my master’s degree, five years prior to a head injury in 2018, that my studies about transformation from trauma into empowerment would benefit me later after my accident. What I discovered through those resilience studies can benefit more than just me.
“A more beautiful message cannot be conceived.” (Sunday 18 October, 2020)"Every man and woman of integrity, scholar and non-scholar alike, everyone who sincerely loves truth, goodness, and beauty, yearns for purpose in this life and immortality hereafter. Through no fault of its own, science can yield neither."
Your Hardest Family Question: How do I convince my boyfriend I’m not his abusive ex-wife? (Thursday 15 October, 2020)I'm dating a man who was left by his wife. He says he has moved on and that he wants to marry again, but all the signs show he hasn't moved on. He is still bitter.
At G20 Interfaith Forum, Elder Bednar Reflects on the Role of Religion in the COVID-19 Crisis (Wednesday 14 October, 2020)Apostle speaks of the powerful possibilities of partnership between secular and sacred institutions during the virtual gathering, hosted by Saudi Arabia.
New Series on Meridian Explores 12 Incisive Doctrinal Questions to Fuel Your Faith (Introduction Part 2) (Wednesday 14 October, 2020)It behooves all of us who believe in that Restoration to think deeply and specifically about just what it was that was restored, and the purpose of this series of articles (that begins next Tuesday) is to explore in a provocative way what some of the most interesting and paradigm-shifting doctrines those were and are.
How’s Your Tolerance for Repetition? (Wednesday 14 October, 2020)Why is there so much repetition in the restored gospel of Jesus Christ?
Two Analogies That Help Me Keep My Testimony Strong (Tuesday 13 October, 2020)Faith crises are real. More friends of mine have left the church this past year than at any other point in my lifetime. As I’ve spoken with several of these friends and seen the public remarks of others who’ve announced their exodus on social media, I’ve become aware of a few recurring patterns that precede anyone from distancing themself from the Gospel.
We Can Never Stop Preparing (Tuesday 13 October, 2020)“How are we to deal with both the somber prophecies and the glorious pronouncements about our day? The Lord told us how with simple, but stunning, reassurance: ‘If ye are prepared ye shall not fear.’"
Come, Follow Me For Individuals and Families: “There Could Not Be a Happier People” 3 Nephi 27 – 4 Nephi (Tuesday 13 October, 2020)There is much we can learn this week as we wrap up the Savior’s visit to the Americas. It is never easy to end something good and face whatever’s next, but the Savior teaches us to “ask, and ye shall receive; knock, and it shall be opened unto you; for he that asketh, receiveth; and unto him that knocketh, it shall be opened” (3 Ne. 27:29). Good times await the faithful.
Lessons from a Hurricane (Monday 12 October, 2020)On October 4th, 1995, I was attending meetings in Montgomery, Alabama for the university when the speaker was interrupted to announce that a hurricane was headed toward Alabama. The meetings were canceled, and people rushed for home. Instead of going home, I drove to my campus office and was surprised that everyone was leaving in a panic. I figured that a hurricane was just a big windstorm. I wasn’t worried.
The hard stuff. How do we overcome it and then write about it? (Monday 12 October, 2020)One of my favorite questions to ask is, “When is a time you didn’t think you would make it?” Is it tough to answer? Yes! But it means the world. Not only for the storyteller, but for all those who will read your story. That is because overcoming obstacles can be easier if we know that someone we love or maybe even someone we don’t even know, overcame something tough and survived.
The Only Trend I’ve Ever Jumped On: Getting a Puppy During Quarantine (Monday 12 October, 2020)My hairstyle will never find its place in a coiffure magazine, and the walls of my house don’t reflect any hot new Sherwin Williams colors. Trendy I am most decidedly NOT, so when I read recently in The Washington Post that puppy sales and pound adoptions were through the roof during the COVID quarantine, I was astounded to discover that I am at last…trendy!
Want Stress Relief? Change Your Questions (Thursday 8 October, 2020)Instead of “how can I get control of my life, my child, this current situation?” what if the correct paradigm is: “How can I become more sensitive to the Spirit so I can learn the Lord’s will in regard to my children? How can I gain the strength and courage to yield to the Lord’s will and honor his plan of agency?"
“If they are not true, then there is no truth” (Wednesday 7 October, 2020)David Whitmer said, “I have been visited by thousands of people, believers and unbelievers, men and ladies of all degrees, sometimes as many as 15 in one day, and have never failed in my testimony. And they will know someday that my testimony is true." Read more of his personal witness in this stunning historical record.
Let’s Hear it For Our Musicians (Wednesday 7 October, 2020)Do you really concentrate on the musical portion of our meetings?
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: “Ye Are the Children of the Covenant”, 3 Nephi 20-26 (Wednesday 7 October, 2020)The ministry of Jesus Christ was divided into two parts: pre- and post-resurrection. In 3 Nephi, we are blessed to receive both parts, which He calls “the fulness of the gospel”.
Protecting Religious Liberty at the United Nations and How You Can Help (Tuesday 6 October, 2020)2020 is a big year for the United Nations; it marks 75 years since the United Nations system came into existence. One of the fundamental international rights protected by the organization in its founding documents was the freedom of religion. But now that freedom is being threatened in a very crucial way.
Elder and Sister Gong Diagnosed with COVID-19 (Tuesday 6 October, 2020)Their condition is mild and is being closely monitored by doctors.
Why Should You Have Family Prayer? (Tuesday 6 October, 2020)President Russell M. Nelson has taught, “The practice of Church members is to kneel in family prayer each morning and evening.” The model for how and what to pray for, both individually and communally, was provided by the Savior himself, both in the New Testament and in 3 Nephi.
General Conference Memes to Share with Your Friends: Saturday Sessions (Sunday 4 October, 2020)General Conference was filled with beautiful, inspiring messages, as always. We have created a series of memes from the speakers in an effort to help our readers to flood social media with uplifting, Christ-centered messages.
President Nelson announces 6 new temples — 5 outside of the US (Sunday 4 October, 2020)By introducing the locations of six new temples at the conclusion of the Sunday afternoon session of October 2020 general Conference, President Russell M. Nelson has announced 49 new temples in the less than three years of leading The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Gen Z is lost in a desert of shallow activism. We need a way out (Wednesday 30 September, 2020)For my generation, Gen Z, the past four months have been our Summer of Discontent. Where we once envisioned with youthful eyes exciting internships and vacations we have found instead a barren desert of job loss and legally restricted movement. And yet, in some ways, my peers have been more active than ever before.
How to Assemble a Night Flight Kit (Tuesday 29 September, 2020)While in my home, I reflected on the fires in my area, listened to the thunder, and wondered if lightning would start new fires. I realized if a fire started in the middle of the night, and I needed to get out quickly, I wasn’t really ready. I didn’t even know where my glasses were. A Night Flight Kit should be kept near where you sleep, or in the bathroom attached to your bedroom ready to easily grab and run. Here is the plan.
So You Want to Lead? Do It With ‘Feeling’ (Tuesday 29 September, 2020)Daniel Goleman, a psychologist and science writer for the New York Times is often credited with popularizing the idea of emotional intelligence. Much has been written and said about the subject since Goleman’s 1995 book. One of the best examinations I’ve seen of the subject is a book titled "Leading With Feeling: Nine Strategies of Emotionally Intelligent Leadership". Here is an interview with the authors.
Five Great Resources to Help You Prepare for General Conference (Tuesday 29 September, 2020)This week, Latter-day Saints around the globe prepare for the October 2020 General Conference, to be held this weekend in Salt Lake City and broadcast globally. As the world continues to endure difficult and challenging times, this Conference promises to provide messages of love, hope, inspiration, and truth from the Lord’s servants. Here are five articles to help you prepare.
Beautiful Calendar to Showcase the History of the Church for 2021 (Monday 28 September, 2020)This coming year of Come Follow Me will immerse us in an in-depth study of the history and restoration of The Church of Jesus Christ. I’ve created a beautiful calendar that will aid you and inspire you as you study the sacred events and revelations of the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in these, the latter days.
Illuminate Podcast: Practicing Self-care When You’ve Experienced Betrayal Trauma (Sunday 27 September, 2020)Dr. Jill Manning joins me in this episode to talk about self-care for betrayed partners. She emphasizes the need to care for yourself physically, mentally, socially, and spiritually while healing from the impact of partner betrayal trauma.
The Connection Between Forgiveness and Freedom (Sunday 27 September, 2020)“I know I should forgive, but how? It makes me angry to even think about it. My father doesn’t deserve forgiveness because the things he did to me are unforgivable and I don’t think he even cared how much he hurt me. What sense does it make to say, Just forgive him’?”
This Activity Page Will Help Your Kids Bring “Come, Follow Me” to Life this Week (Sunday 27 September, 2020)I created Come Follow Me FHE to bless families everywhere when implementing the new Come Follow Me for Individuals and Families curriculum written by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Check out this free activity page for your family to enjoy this week, particularly as you prepare for General Conference.
Are You Excited to Repent? (Wednesday 23 September, 2020)When was the last time you felt thrilled about repenting?
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: “Behold, My Joy is Full”, 3 Nephi 17-19 (Wednesday 23 September, 2020)The power of these chapters to help us hear Him depends not on what we do by reading them, but upon what we do once we’ve finished reading them. If we rush off without a second thought, they will wither—forgotten in shallow ground. But if we take a moment to ponder, ask, listen, or just send a text to someone about them, the words of these chapters can change us like they changed the Nephites.
What Does It Mean to Be Perfect? (Wednesday 23 September, 2020)When Jesus appeared to the people at Bountiful, he taught them things that were similar to what He said in His Sermon on the Mount in the New Testament. However, the temple context of 3 Nephi, as well as some significant differences in wording, bring the inspiring words of Jesus more fully to light.
The Timing of Christ’s Appearance to the Nephites, Shavuot, and the Temple Endowment (Tuesday 22 September, 2020)One of the holiest celebrations that has persisted from ancient Israel till the present is known in English as The Feast of Weeks. To modern Jews, it is known as Shavuot. For Latter-day Saints, this feast has a surprising timing that correlates to higher ordinances in the New Testament, The Book of Mormon, and even the first temple ordinances given to Latter-day Saints in modern times.
“Cuties”: Education – or Exploitation? (Tuesday 22 September, 2020)"Cuties" is a French film that tackles thorny issues thrown at us by the modern world. It had the potential to be a film that parents could use as a tool in discussing problems that children and families today face. Instead, it has been getting a lot of bad press for good reason.
The America I Once Knew (Tuesday 22 September, 2020)The things that were once good about America are now considered bad. How did this happen?
Did Lehi Observe Rosh Hashanah? (Sunday 20 September, 2020)Although the Book of Mormon does not mention Rosh Hashanah by name, the observances and ideas traditionally associated with this festival resonate remarkably with the initial context and impetus of Book of Mormon.
Pointing Fingers at Perfectionism (Sunday 20 September, 2020)Is there such a thing as healthy perfectionism?
For Ruth Bader Ginsburg, oneness never was meant to be sameness (Sunday 20 September, 2020)It is Ginsburg’s friendship, not her court opinions, that the nation ought to remember right now.
Raising Girls With Grit, Confidence, and Courage (Wednesday 16 September, 2020)In today’s world, it’s no doubt harder than ever to raise children. So parents can use every resource they can get to help with one of the most important jobs they’ll ever have. One excellent resource is a book titled What Girls Need: How to Raise Bold, Courageous, and Resilient Women. Today I interview the author.
When Everyone Lets You Down (Wednesday 16 September, 2020)We’ve all been there. People disappoint us. Sometimes it seems there’s no one we can really count on.
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: “I am the Law and the Light”, 3 Nephi 12-16 (Wednesday 16 September, 2020)Cookies must have the right ingredients, mixed in the proper order, and carefully prepared and baked. Similarly, the principles taught in 3 Nephi 12 may also be essential ingredients to discipleship and have an order for development in our lives.
FAQs on this Week’s “Tracing Ancient Threads in the Book of Moses” Conference (Sunday 13 September, 2020)Learn more about the fascinating information that will be shared at this week's upcoming conference about "Tracing the Ancient Thread of the Book of Moses" and find out how you can tune in (the conference with be streamed live online).
Messages of Christ: The Woman at the Well (Wednesday 9 September, 2020)In the Book of Mormon we find many examples of those who testify of the Savior and his divinity. Some of them initially do not appear to be likely witnesses of the Messiah. Yet once they received a personal witness, we learn that they became powerful missionaries bringing others to Christ.
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: “Arise and Come Forth Unto Me”, 3 Nephi 8 – 11 (Wednesday 9 September, 2020)In Helaman 14:2, Samuel the Lamanite prophesied, “Five years more cometh … then cometh the Son of God.” Giving the people a prophecy with a timetable is something prophets rarely do, and it appears that the faithful saints were keeping track and of time and watching for the Savior’s birth.
Why Should 3 Nephi Be Read as the Book of the High Priest Nephi? (Tuesday 8 September, 2020)No part of the Book of Mormon exudes greater holiness than the book of 3 Nephi—the book some have called the “holy of holies” of the Book of Mormon. Only someone intimately familiar with the traditional backgrounds of the Temple of Solomon and the Nephite temple experience could have so artfully constructed the text of 3 Nephi with such rich temple imagery and symbolism.
Finding the angle to tell your life story (Monday 7 September, 2020)Everyone has a story, and not just any story. Everyone has a fantastic, amazing story inside of their lives. If you don’t think so, take it from me, a journalist of over 20 years – they do. And I love finding those stories. Often, I can catch a scent of the story within the first five to ten minutes of talking to someone.
10 additional temples set to enter Phase 2 of reopening as 5 more enter Phase 1 (Monday 7 September, 2020)In its weekly reopening of temples closed in March due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is reopening five more temples and advancing 10 more to a higher level of operation in its four-phase reopening plan.
Come, Follow Me Podcast #36: “Lift Up Your Head and Be of Good Cheer”, 3 Nephi 1-7 (Thursday 3 September, 2020)“What if at 4:00 in the morning on a fall day I looked out the window and it was as bright as day? Would my heart take a leap and would I think: What is going on?!” It was pitch dark when I peered out my window and yet, we have record of an event in this week’s reading, where untold thousands of people could not help but see this incredible, unforgettable sign of a day, a night and a day wherein there was no darkness.
Your Hardest Family Question: I just discovered my biological father is alive (Thursday 3 September, 2020)I grew up four decades plus with little or no knowledge of my biological father and relatives. I accepted that he was deceased as I was told. How do I proceed from finding out that my biological father is still alive?
First Presidency: Amid fear, isolation and sorrow of COVID-19 — the answer to conflict is faith (Thursday 3 September, 2020)Capping a series of Church News articles on the COVID-19 pandemic, President Nelson and his counselors in the First Presidency — President Dallin H. Oaks and President Henry B. Eyring — reflected on the pandemic that caused illness and death, stifled economies, altered missionary assignments, closed schools, and curtailed Church meetings and daily routines across the globe.
The Question: Equal Opportunity or Equal Outcome? (Tuesday 1 September, 2020)Most people want equality of opportunity. Socialists want equality of outcome. Impossible without coercion. Building socialism that works is like building a snowman in the Sahara.
Take the 30-Day Preparedness Challenge (Tuesday 1 September, 2020)September is National Preparedness Month in the USA, and there is no better time to help our families start on the goal of becoming self-reliant and prepared people–ready for any challenge. The following calendar is a simple, inexpensive way to get started.
How Are Samuel the Lamanite and the Biblical Prophet Samuel Similar? (Tuesday 1 September, 2020)Samuel the Lamanite was likely not what the Nephites expected from a prophet of the Lord. He was a Lamanite, he came from outside their established institutions, and he proclaimed God’s ire in a radically public demonstration. Yet, Samuel is also everything to be expected of a biblical prophet.
Latest temple update: More temples now designated for Phase 2 reopening than are in Phase 1 (Monday 31 August, 2020)For the first time in the 18 weeks of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints reopening its temples, more temples have been designated for Phase 2 than are in Phase 1 in the four-phase reopening plan following total closure in March due to the global COVID-19 pandemic.
Our Credentials for Heaven (Monday 31 August, 2020)A friend of mine asked a question that burdened her. “The scriptures line out the key choice we need to make—to live righteously which will result in our eternal happiness. But, how do we know when we are righteous enough to qualify to return home with Our Father? I am aware of all the ways I fall short. How do I know if my efforts will be sufficient in the end?”
Attacking Other Faiths (Monday 31 August, 2020)I’ve occasionally been asked, when I’m at academic conferences, what it’s like to teach at a religiously-affiliated university (BYU) where I’m expected to expose the errors of other faiths. I’ve invariably responded that I wouldn’t have any idea what it would be like, since the university at which I teach has no such expectations.
Come Follow Me Podcast #35, “Glad Tidings of Great Joy”, Helaman 13-16 (Thursday 27 August, 2020)In the Book of Mormon, the Nephites always think of themselves as the good guys. In a movie, they’d ride in wearing the white hat or the gold star, signifying their goodness. Yet, the Book of Mormon demonstrates that often the Nephites are relentlessly blind to their own wickedness and it is the Lamanites who are the most faithful and true.
Your Hardest Family Question: I caught my young daughter reading a trashy novel (Thursday 27 August, 2020)I just found out (20 minutes ago) my 11-year-old has read an inappropriate young adult novel. The book has inappropriate language and graphic sexual content. I am beyond crushed and upset.
Elder Cook Discusses Brigham Young, Racial Unity, and the Need to Defend Religious Liberty (Thursday 27 August, 2020)In a speech to BYU faculty, Elder Cook addresses being sensitive in creating racial unity, understanding leaders of the past in the context of their time, being Christlike in response to criticism, and defending religious liberty.
Why Does Helaman 7–8 Feel Like a Funeral Speech? (Tuesday 25 August, 2020)Nephi’s lamentation must have involved some dramatic actions in order to cause such a stir. Welch has suggested that “Nephi may have attracted attention to his message by carrying on as if someone had just died. … One can imagine Nephi dressed in traditional Nephite mourning attire (whatever that might have been), gesticulating on top of his tower perhaps in motions of bereavement."
How Are You Doing in Your Spirit? (Monday 24 August, 2020)Do you ever have one of those mornings where you just feel a little “off”? Maybe you didn’t sleep well the night before; maybe you have a pressing concern? Maybe your day ahead is packed and pre-stress is knocking at the door? Whatever the case, I understand. I've been there. That's when someone asked me an unexpected question.
Eight Short Lessons from Samuel the Lamanite (Monday 24 August, 2020)We see this brief introductory note in Helaman 13, “the Nephites did still remain in wickedness". Then something unexpected happens in the Book of Mormon. We hear the voice of a Lamanite preaching repentance to the Nephites. Samuel the Lamanite’s words are important for many reasons.
In the Test of Life, Mistakes Can Be Fixed (Monday 24 August, 2020)Some standardized tests come in clocked sections. When the time expires for one section, participants are not allowed to go back and fix mistakes or answer more questions. The Test of Life operates on a different premise: you can correct any mistake at any time until the Test ends.
Church announces these Utah temples are moving to Phase 2 of reopening plan (Monday 10 August, 2020)Ten Latter-day Saint temples in Utah are among 17 worldwide that will expand their limited reopenings after closing during the height of the coronavirus pandemic, the First Presidency announced on Monday.
The Power of a Smile to Heal Hearts and Bring Hope (Sunday 9 August, 2020)There are more sources for comedy than ever before with online video platforms, social media memes, and GIFs, yet people aren’t happier. Happiness is a condition of heart that is created by connection, purpose, truth, and hope. How can we help create those things with one another?
What’s the Hardest Part of Your Calling? (Wednesday 5 August, 2020)We’ve all struggled to measure up and serve well. Here are some ways to make it much easier.
LIDAR Imaging Reveals Mayan Antiquities of Warring People and Fortifications in Jungles of Guatemala (Wednesday 5 August, 2020)As you have read the Book of Mormon, have you ever wondered why so many people got “lost in the wilderness” as mentioned in Mosiah 7: 4; and Mosiah 8: 7-8? Could there be a massive “wilderness” area in the Americas where travelers would get lost?
Church leaders express condolences after explosion in Beirut, Lebanon explosion (Wednesday 5 August, 2020)"We extend our heartfelt sympathies to each person impacted by the explosion in Beirut on 4 August 2020. We grieve the loss of life and extend our sincere condolences to the families and friends of those who died. We pray that God will bless the injured and pour out peace and comfort on all who are mourning in Lebanon."
Honoring Both Faith and Works (Monday 3 August, 2020)At the then-appropriate age of 19, I was called to serve a mission in America’s Bible belt. I remember one evening on my mission when my companion and I were invited to attend a Bible study at the local Baptist church. We went with high hopes for sharing our message of the Restoration. We were disappointed.
Prophecies About Technology in the Dispensation of the Fulness of Times (Monday 3 August, 2020)Our current, digital age, where nearly 60 percent of the world population are active internet users and more than half are active on social media, should not be a surprise to Latter-day Saints. Why? Because prophets have been giving us a heads up on discoveries yet to come for decades.
No injuries reported after shots fired at Provo MTC (Monday 3 August, 2020)Police in Utah are investigating after they reported that the driver of an SUV shot at the security booth outside the Missionary Training Center in Provo in the early hours of the morning Monday.
Why Did Alma Draw on the Teachings of Abinadi? (Tuesday 28 July, 2020)Astute readers of the Book of Mormon may have noticed that “Alma [the Younger] shows an affinity for the words of Abinadi.”1 Nowhere is this affinity more evident than in his counsel to his son Corianton, where research by John L. Hilton III indicates that Alma made at least thirteen allusions or direct quotations to Abinadi’s teachings.
Help Me Clutter Up Your Mirror: A Request for Inspirational Thoughts (Monday 27 July, 2020)I solicit your help. I’m looking for short sayings to tape to my mirror, and to yours, too. You’ll have to do your own taping, though. I do not make house calls. Here are some of my favorites to get you started.
What Do We Learn from Alma about the Resurrection? (Monday 27 July, 2020)So fundamental is the Christian doctrine of resurrection and so familiar we may be with this idea that we may miss how stunning and incredibly unexpected this idea is.
America Both in Crisis and on Trial (Monday 27 July, 2020)A growing number of young Americans are not only ambivalent, but are outright hostile, toward America’s national origin.
Parents Who Know: Stopping Child Exploitation (Sunday 26 July, 2020)“I will do something to stop this!” I thought, as a friend of mine from Colorado told me that in the school databases in her state and my state, she found XXX elicit pornography? In fact, there are two easy things that we can all do to stop this porn-pandemic in the schools and libraries.
It’s Okay to Fail: An Unexpected Lesson from Alma’s Mission to the Zoramites (Sunday 26 July, 2020)In my early years as a seminary teacher, I always understood Alma’s mission to the Zoramites to be a great success. After all, this was the “dream team” of missionaries—full of all-stars. These people had successfully converted thousands of people in previous missions—of course they would succeed here. But there is more to the story.
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: “The Great Plan of Happiness”, Alma 39-42 (Sunday 26 July, 2020)How do we change, repent and turn to the Lord? Alma sets forth a formula for all of us to follow that can help us change and avoid mistakes.
Come Follow Me Podcast #29, “Look to God and Live”, Alma 36-38 (Friday 17 July, 2020)We see many conversations in the Book of Mormon where fathers teach their sons and their impact changes not only their son’s life, but the generations that follow. The lessons are profound. The impact overwhelming. If there was ever scripture that calls out for fathers to step into their parenting role with power, the Book of Mormon is it.
Your Hardest Family Question: What is the difference between helping and being used? (Thursday 16 July, 2020)Our neighbor drives old cars and calls us whenever he breaks down, even in the middle of the night. My husband always goes and helps him but I’m starting to feel we are being used. Is there a dividing line between loving/helping our neighbor and being taken advantage of?
Tad Callister: The Founding Fathers — heroes or villains? (Thursday 16 July, 2020)“Today, it is common to criticize the founders of America. Judging them by today’s standards of equality and justice they do fail. Some owned slaves, none fought to give women equal rights. Most were wealthy white men..." But there is one crucial problem with judging them by today’s standards. It is a problem that can't be overlooked.
The Problem with Presentism: Judging the Past by the Present (Tuesday 14 July, 2020)Recent news footage of activists acting as judge, jury, and executioner on the past has been hard for me to watch. Here is the problem with seeing the events and people of the past through the lens of the present.
Learn about being Heart Healthy in Cardio Miracle Webinar Tonight (Tuesday 14 July, 2020)It is not too late to register for Meridian Magazine/Cardio Miracle’s Zoom webinar Wednesday night at 7:00 MDT. Called “Getting Your Numbers to a Heart Healthy Place”, it will be given by Meridian Publisher, Scot Proctor and Cardio-Miracle Founder John Hewlett.
Come, Follow Me for Individuals and Families: “Look to God and Live” Alma 36-38 (Tuesday 14 July, 2020)Have you ever had such fervent teaching moments, where you are overcome with an urge to share what you have seen and felt? I certainly have and I believe the Spirit has been with me in such moments and testified of truth.
Teaching Your Children Discernment (Monday 13 July, 2020)True discernment means knowing something is true, both in your mind and in your heart, and properly judging a situation or piece of information based on that combined assurance. So, how can we be sure that our children develop this skill?
Plagues, Pestilences, Pests and Pandemics in These Latter Days (Sunday 12 July, 2020)I continue to be intrigued that God not only knows but cares about and shares with his children important information about events that will happen in the future. Working with Michael Rhodes and others on the multi-volume BYU New Testament Commentary, especially immersing myself again in the Book of Revelation, helped to focus and refine my understanding of what God has revealed about the last days.
Has staying in got you down? Try some family history talk at the dinner table! (Sunday 12 July, 2020)In the past four months of pandemic craziness, dinner table conversations have been the highlight of the day for me. We haven’t been running off to soccer, football or dance practice and we have the ability to sit around and talk long after the food is gone. How has it gone in your home?
Have You Dedicated Your Home? (Wednesday 8 July, 2020)We need this now, more than ever.
We Will Prove Them (Monday 6 July, 2020)If “prove” means to test or try, and since God is omniscient, knowing the end from the beginning, then He already knows how we will do on the test. So why is the test necessary?
A Texas Victory for Parents and Children We Can All Celebrate (Monday 6 July, 2020)In the midst of a global pandemic, widespread Black Lives Matter protests, and general national upheaval, last week some good news for parental and children’s rights went virtually unnoticed.
Choose Jesus and Reject the False Doctrines of Korihor (Monday 6 July, 2020)As I read about Korihor’s false doctrine, I thought about that ice cream. Both please the carnal mind. Both are appealing. Both are popular. Both are easy, at a superficial level. Both sell us on the false idea that there is no need to do the hard work of preserving our health.
What Could Make You a Better Missionary? (Wednesday 24 June, 2020)Courage isn’t really what we’re lacking.
Hands and Arms as Trophies of Valor: Examples from Archaeology (Wednesday 24 June, 2020)In the Book of Mormon, Ammon cuts off the arms of his Lamanite attackers at the waters of Sebus, and his fellow servants take those severed arms and present them to king Lamoni. Taking the body parts of one’s defeated enemies as trophies of valor and as a witness of how many were killed is a well-known practice throughout the ancient world, both Old and New.
Why ‘Outsourcing’ Your Decisions Can Be Risky (Wednesday 24 June, 2020)At a time when a pandemic is raging around the globe, it’s more important than ever to make good decisions. But the explosion of data and the relentless 24-hour news cycle have left many in a constant state of anxiety. There’s often a fear that the correct choice (shelter-in-place or not, face mask or not) is available but might be missed.
What to Discuss – Before the Honeymoon (Tuesday 23 June, 2020)Knowing what to talk about or how to talk about sex before tying the knot is often difficult. Couples aren’t sure what’s appropriate to discuss and may not have much practice talking about it, so it can seem uncomfortable. Some discussion of sexual intimacy before marriage, though, is crucial. Here are some practical suggestions that may help.
The pandemic highlights a logical fallacy that, unless checked, could prove our undoing (Tuesday 23 June, 2020)It’s been said that one of the hallmarks of maturity and intelligence is the ability to hold opposing ideas/positions in mind and see the truth in both. It's a skill that may provide the perfect antidote to the polarization we now see in politics.
What We Have Learned – Let Us Not Forget (Tuesday 23 June, 2020)Pandemics are unwelcome visitors, but they can teach us much about our own goals and priorities. It's important we don't forget the lessons we have learned in the past few months. These are a few you might've learned.
“Old Man”: A Father’s Day Tribute (Thursday 18 June, 2020)Veteran Nashville songwriter Jason Deere has a passion for writing songs that are tributes to people, places and events that are important to him. After all, he is the co-founder of the Nashville Tribute Band which has been recording and touring for almost twenty years now. With Father’s Day coming up, he wanted to do something special for his father.
Hidden Things: The Steamboat Captain that Fulfilled Joseph Smith’s “Last Prophecy” (Thursday 18 June, 2020)The following is the first in a series of articles giving greater detail from the stories behind the hidden things in our recently released Treasures of the Restoration jigsaw puzzle. Today we share the amazing background on the Maid of Iowa--the steamboat the carried hundreds of new converts up the Mississippi to Nauvoo.
Come, Follow Me for Individuals and Families: “I Will Make An Instrument Of Thee” Alma 17-22 (Tuesday 16 June, 2020)The scriptures tell of many middle moments, when afflictions were sore and deliverance seemed impossible: the wickedness of the entire earth before the Lord covenants with Noah and he is spared in an ark; the struggles of the Israelites before their deliverance through the Red Sea. Recently in Come, Follow Me, we read of one of Alma and Amulek’s middle moments, as they witness the inhumane suffering and death of many believers they loved.
Your Hardest Family Question: My wife is dying and I’m a mess (Thursday 11 June, 2020)My 74-year-old wife has recently been diagnosed with cancer that has spread. She is receiving a lot of medical attention and care. Unfortunately, it seems that this disease will ultimately take her life. My wife is a brave and courageous woman. The thing is I'm not brave and I'm having trouble with the flood of thoughts and feelings involved in trying to get a handle on the situation. Basically, I'm a mess.
Not a Trivial Pursuit: Family History for the Novice (Thursday 11 June, 2020)I have some family history expert friends. They have that certain look in their eye when they talk about genealogy. It’s hard to explain, but I would imagine it’s similar to the look that the children in “The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe” had when they returned from Narnia. It’s this quiet joy. They have seen the other side. In this case, we’re talking about the other side of the veil. It’s wondrous.
Lessons from a Maya Temple Ceremony Dedicated to their Ancestors (Thursday 11 June, 2020)Much of the ancient religious culture recorded on stone monuments at Izapa survives today among the living highland Maya. My wife, Cheryl, and I had the rare privilege in June of 2010, to witness traditional ceremonies – with roots of the K‘iche and Kaqchikel – conducted by Maya “Day Keepers” at Izapa for the first time in a thousand years or more.
Overcoming the Obstacles to Family Revelation (Monday 8 June, 2020)This week we will explore five practices or habits that can overcome the obstacles to family revelation and swing open wide the door of direct revelation and guidance from almighty God for our families.
Illuminate Podcast: The Problem with Idealizing Motherhood and Glorifying Self-neglect (Monday 8 June, 2020)In this episode, I interview Dr. Julie Hanks, Licensed Clinical Social Worker, author, and assistant professor at Utah Valley University on the topic of why idealizing motherhood can be harmful to women's mental and emotional health.
How Wide is God’s Mercy? A Latter-day Surprise (Monday 8 June, 2020)One of the greatest burdens on the souls of many Christians is the doctrine that the vast majority of humans are condemned to hell with no option for escape. How can these views be reconciled with God’s redemptive mission? Can the God of love be coolly indifferent to the destruction of most of His children?
The Truth About Peace that Parents Shouldn’t Ignore (Sunday 7 June, 2020)During the last four years I’ve spent a great deal of time battling racism and bigotry. I’ve had so many meetings at my kitchen table, gone to trainings, created videos and assemblies, read books, joined boards, spoken to principals, to legislators. And yet, I know very little. It’s messy stuff. Just when I start to think I understand, I realize I don’t.
How Much Will You Give Away to Gain Your Righteous Desires? (Sunday 7 June, 2020)What are your righteous desires? How hard are you willing to work for the realization of those righteous desires?
Assuming the Worst (Tuesday 2 June, 2020)When concern began to surface among some Americans at some of the unintended consequences arising from lockdown policies earlier this spring, the response in some quarters was almost immediate: too bad some in this country don’t care about protecting human lives! Reasonable arguments did exist. None of this stopped many from assuming the very worst about those who disagreed with their own views.
Whose “Word” Was Fulfilled by Christ’s Suffering “Pains and Sicknesses”? (Tuesday 2 June, 2020)Alma the Younger’s teachings to the people of Gideon about the future sufferings of the Son of God are recognized and cherished by Latter-day Saints as one of the most descriptive passages on the Atonement in all of scripture. In the midst of those inspiring and prophetic verses, Alma says the sufferings of the Son of God will happen “that the word might be fulfilled."
Book of Mormon Reminder: Resist Voices That Stir Hate and Violence (Tuesday 2 June, 2020)The Book of Mormon is becoming more relevant day by day during this time of dramatic tension and sweeping upheavals in our society.
President Nelson Shares Statement about Racism and Calls for Respect for Human Dignity (Monday 1 June, 2020)"The Creator of us all calls on each of us to abandon attitudes of prejudice against any group of God’s children. Any of us who has prejudice toward another race needs to repent."
When We Drop the Judgment and Respond with Love (Monday 1 June, 2020)Maybe you've heard about the accident? It's been on the news, all over Facebook, in the papers...about the three teens who got in a terrible accident this week on the Bonneville Salt Flats? The responses to this shocking event, that happened to close friends of my son, were telling.
Eight Examples of Unity and Peace from This Weekend’s Protests (Sunday 31 May, 2020)The events of this last weekend in response to the killing of George Floyd have shaken an already shaken country. So much focus remains on the rioting and the violence, that very little attention has been given to the peaceful protests and moments of inspiring unity that also occurred this weekend.
Talking About Nothing: Is It Healthy? (Sunday 31 May, 2020)It may test our patience some days when we really crave productivity or purposeful, deep conversations. But, the light, seemingly meaningless conversations give family members an opportunity to invest in each other in a different way than you might think.
The Longest and Shortest Temple Recommend Interview Ever (Sunday 31 May, 2020)Which questions for your spiritual life matter to you right now and why?
Come Follow Me Podcast #22: “Have Ye Experienced This Mighty Change in Your Hearts?”, Alma 5-7 (Thursday 28 May, 2020)I’ve always loved Alma chapter 5. It could be taken as the most introspective chapter in all of holy writ. Alma asks more than 40 questions of his listeners and really wants them to probe their spirituality in a deep way. But Alma wasn’t just talking to the people in Zarahemla—he is talking to us!
Your Hardest Family Question: I don’t feel happy when my son is around (Thursday 28 May, 2020)I have a young adult son, still at home, that we adopted as a young child. He had a lot of past trauma, and though we did our best to help him, he still developed borderline personality disorder and lies a lot.
Cartoon: Gadianton Study (Thursday 28 May, 2020)Don't know where you got that idea...
She Wrote Fake News for Cosmopolitan and Now Regrets Misleading Women on Feminism (Thursday 28 May, 2020)Sue Ellen Browder, a Cosmopolitan magazine writer for 20 years, describes what she wrote as “propaganda.” The goal? To sell women on the idea that sexual liberation is the path to the single woman’s personal fulfillment.
Remembering that We Are Instruments in the Hands of God (Wednesday 27 May, 2020)I have a feeling that we all need to be careful how we speak of what we have achieved in the work of the Lord. The distance between accomplishment—even righteous accomplishment—and pride is hard to measure without a magnifying glass.
Do We Fall Into Categories We May Not Realize? (Wednesday 27 May, 2020)Have you ever identified with some of the “-ites” in the Book of Mormon?
You Can’t Do It All, And That’s Perfectly Okay (Wednesday 27 May, 2020)“Put first things first” is one of those self-improvement prescriptions with a very high “Oh, duh!” factor. As in “Oh, duh! Everybody knows that.” Trouble is, almost everybody ignores the prescription.
Seeking Family Revelation through Priesthood, Blessings, and Family Prayer (Monday 25 May, 2020)What is more important than holding and using the very power of God, and in that context, what could be a more powerful magnet to Family Revelation?
Making Sense of Suffering (Monday 25 May, 2020)We have all experienced it. Senseless tragedy. Incurable illness. Painful challenges. Unrelenting grief. Dashed dreams. One of the most daunting tasks for any mortal who hopes to sustain a vibrant faith in God is to account for suffering.
Bare Branches: The Persistent Consequences of China’s One-Child Policy (Monday 25 May, 2020)In response to an article about China’s involuntary bachelors, often referred to as “bare branches” because they fail to add fruit to their family tree, one person commented: “Who are you to stick your nose in China’s policies? Bare branches is not a problem it’s a blessing. There are way too many people in China already." Here's why it's not that simple.
Victor Hugo on Immortality (Thursday 21 May, 2020)"The earth gives me its generous sap, but heaven lights me with the reflection of unknown worlds. You say that the soul is nothing but the result of the bodily powers. Why, then, is my soul the more luminous when my bodily powers begin to fail? Winter is on my head, and eternal spring is in my heart." Read more of what Victor Hugo had to say about the immortality of the soul.
The Hardest Part Seems to be Not Knowing How Long this Trial May Last (Monday 18 May, 2020)I have learned in life that everyone has to go through difficult trials. No one gets a pass to escape! It seems that during the most difficult of trials, sometimes the hardest thing to endure is not knowing—not knowing how long the trial will last; not knowing how it might end.
Faith and Fear in the Midst of Snitching: A Firsthand Account (Monday 18 May, 2020)While the tragedy of the Coronavirus pandemic has brought out many examples of good as people pull together, sacrifice to help each other, and show courage in many ways, there have been many troubling developments as well.
The Beatitudes of Alma: How the Blood of Jesus Leads to Blessings and Beauty (Monday 18 May, 2020)When we read the words of Abinadi, trust those words, and act on the truths they convey, we can experience the same beatitudes and promises and blessings God delivered to Alma.
They Don’t Want to Disappoint You (Sunday 17 May, 2020)When teaching and training children, many parents don’t often think about the heart and bond of the child, and how the child is processing what the parent does and says. Since children often misunderstand us and situations, relationship disconnections occur.
Want to make progress, feel happier? Listen to the right voice. (Sunday 17 May, 2020)We all have two voices in our heads. It's important to learn to listen to the right one and not to mix them up.
Discovering the Word of Wisdom: The Flesh of Beasts, Part I (Sunday 17 May, 2020)I never imagined that some of the “great and important things” to be revealed might already be contained in the same set of scriptures I’ve been reading my entire life, just waiting for me to discover them. This is how I now feel about the Word of Wisdom.
Has the volcano responsible for the destruction in 3 Nephi been located? (Wednesday 13 May, 2020)Are there any candidates for the actual volcano that caused the destruction described in 3 Nephi? There are at least two, according to Jeff and Louise Wynn. But first a few words of explanation.
Have You Fully Immersed Yourself in the Love of God? (Wednesday 13 May, 2020)I wonder at Abinadi’s faith and fortitude. His sense of purpose and mission. His hope. He must have hoped that something, anything he said would have made a difference to someone, anyone. His message turned the tide in the heart of Alma the Elder. That one touched heart has changed the course of history.
COVID Confessions of Meridian Authors (Tuesday 12 May, 2020)I love to learn from others, and I thought you might too. I have asked columnists here at Meridian Magazine to share with us their experiences during the stay-at-home orders, including and especially what they have learned about how to be better prepared in the future.
Is Latter-Day Saint Theology Responsible for LGBT+ Suicides? (Tuesday 12 May, 2020)If a belief fits into a framework or narrative that is strongly held about an emotionally-charged issue, this belief takes on a very sophisticated life of its own. Sadly, this kind of misinformation has sometimes occurred with regard to suicide, a sensitive area that merits our tireless attention, careful analyses, and continued intervention efforts.
7 Surprises: How the Coronavirus has Affected Real Estate (Tuesday 12 May, 2020)People ask every day about how residential real estate will perform amidst the coronavirus and pandemic backdrop. Some folks (buyers and investors) are hoping to score a deep discount on property. Will they be able to do this?
First Presidency Letter Asks that Meetinghouse Foyer Artwork be More Christ-centered (Monday 11 May, 2020)In a letter today, the First Presidency is asking local leaders to ensure that the aesthetic feel in the foyers and entryways to the faith’s weekly worship spaces reflects an even deeper reverence for the Lord Jesus Christ. This effort supports President Russell M. Nelson’s call over the past 18 months to emphasize that “Jesus Christ is at the center of His Church”.
Your Hardest Family Question: My alcoholic son refuses to honor our rules (Thursday 7 May, 2020)Our son is having financial issues. He can work from home, so he came home to stay with us so he can regroup. We told him he could stay, but he couldn’t drink in our home. Evidently, that rule was broken the first day he came.
17 Latter-day Saint temples to open for sealings on Monday, others to open in four phases (Thursday 7 May, 2020)Limited opening of temples in Utah, Idaho, Germany and Sweden is the first sign of a return to Latter-day Saint gatherings as the coronavirus pandemic continues.
What to Know – Before the Honeymoon (Tuesday 5 May, 2020)“What will sex be like? What do I need to know?” These are the primary questions young adults have in preparing for the honeymoon and the intimate relationship in marriage. Gaining knowledge and deepening one’s understanding of sexual intimacy is one of the best ways to be prepared and not have fear.
New Joseph Smith Papers volume features ‘impostors,’ plural marriage and poetry (Tuesday 5 May, 2020)One of the most interesting documents in the newest volume of the Joseph Smith Papers goes by the unassuming title, “Revelation, 27 July 1842.” The revelation, dictated by Joseph Smith, provided Latter-day Saint Newel K. Whitney with instructions to use in performing the plural marriage sealing of his daughter, Sarah Ann Whitney, to the Prophet.
The Covenantal Reason for Abinadi’s Preaching (Sunday 3 May, 2020)God’s covenants dominate Mosiah 11-17. For starters, we have in King Noah failed covenantal kingship. God revealed in the law of Moses what He expects from covenantal leaders in Deuteronomy 17:14-20. I interpret these passages as a set of God decreed kingly dos and don’ts.
4 Fascinating Insights about Seers, Seer Stones, and Interpreters (Sunday 3 May, 2020)Readers may have some questions about what a seer is, how they are different from a prophet, what the Nephite “interpreters” are, and why seers might use oracular devices such as seer stones to receive revelation.
Monitoring Kid’s Media Usage: One Plan Does Not Fit All (Sunday 3 May, 2020)BYU School of Family Life researchers are discovering results that may be counterintuitive to parents who focus solely on limiting screen time for kids.
How Do We Know When We’re Finished? (Wednesday 29 April, 2020)Here’s how to answer to God with confidence.
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: “A Light…That Can Never Be Darkened”, Mosiah 11-17 (Wednesday 29 April, 2020)Why did Abinadi’s face shine with luster as he spoke? Do we, at times, have this light in us? As we draw closer to the source of light, do we also gain greater light?
Communities Are Becoming Like Caring Families During the Pandemic (Wednesday 29 April, 2020)Amid the upheaval and for some the devastating effects of the current pandemic, there are also signs of a powerful transformation of communities uniting together as caring families. Here are some examples in the Mid-Atlantic area of the United States and around the world.
COVID-19: An Opportunity to Re-Think Food Storage (Tuesday 28 April, 2020)We know more challenges will come before the Savior returns. Consider this time the fire drill, like the ones we practiced in grammar school so we were ready. What have we learned we still need to be ready?
VIDEO: When the Lights Go On Again, All Over the World (Tuesday 28 April, 2020)Like the tremendous power of fire and heat, this tiny virus has shown the capacity to both consume and destroy, but also to refine and molten out the best in God’s children.
Come, Follow Me for Individuals and Families: “A Light … That Can Never Be Darkened”, Mosiah 11-17 (Tuesday 28 April, 2020)We don't hear much about Noah prior to his coronation. For all we know he was a half-decent young man. In any case he had impressed his father Zeniff enough to be chosen from among his brothers to receive the crown.
Science-based vs. Faith-based Policies for Coping with the Coronavirus (Monday 27 April, 2020)Though I am open about my faith and often welcome steps that allow faith to play a more visible role in society, I prefer to let faith be a personal matter and not a basis for government policies. Unfortunately, I fear that an abundance of faith, perhaps even blind faith, is behind many policies and plans being pursued by government leaders when it comes to dealing with the novel Coronavirus.
Putting the Bible in its Honored and Rightful Place (Monday 27 April, 2020)The Latter-day Saint view is that the Bible is a sacred and cherished gift from God to His children. But it is not the only source of God’s truth for His people.
Harvard Magazine’s Misguided Attack on Homeschooling (Monday 27 April, 2020)It was a lack of family time led me to seriously consider homeschooling. I had become acquainted with this alternative to the traditional classroom several months earlier after meeting a young couple that taught their children at home. This was in 1989 when homeschooling was painted as radical and some thought it shouldn't be legal. This family, however, did not seem radical in the least.
New Logo for Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square, Practices and Performances Still Paused (Thursday 23 April, 2020)While the coronavirus pandemic has put practices and performances on hold for The Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square, it has not stopped the announcement of a new logo and strategic direction for the choir.
Alleviating Fear and Anxiety About Intimacy (Sunday 19 April, 2020)It’s normal to be a little nervous going into the honeymoon and intimate dimension of marriage. You may have some apprehensions, but these can be alleviated through preparation, knowledge, and good communication with your sweetheart and others.
First Presidency Provides Guidance on How to Administer the Church in Challenging Times (Sunday 19 April, 2020)Resources are provided in response to the continued disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Five Mistakes Almost Every Parent Makes with Their Teen (Sunday 19 April, 2020)Perfect parenting doesn’t exist. Still, if you can learn to recognize and reduce these five common parenting mistakes, you can model excellent communication for your kids and teens.
Your Hardest Family Question: How do we help our daughter see she’s dating the wrong guy? (Thursday 16 April, 2020)My husband and I are devastated and just don’t know what to do, if anything. She knows that we feel he is not the right guy for her, we surely don’t want to lose a relationship with our daughter but also have a really hard time just being around this guy.
Latter-day Saints Participate in Global COVID-19 Relief Efforts (Tuesday 14 April, 2020)Among the many projects underway, Church resources and volunteers are being used to help make much-needed face masks and other protective equipment for frontline health care workers.
Why Do We Fast? (Wednesday 8 April, 2020)When we hear the word fast, we often think of quick or quickly. That was my teenage understanding. I thought that Fast Sunday was supposed to pass quickly by. But that is not the original or core meaning of fast.
Good Grandparenting: Don’t Manage, CONSULT! (Tuesday 7 April, 2020)Our grandparental instincts are to give them everything and to simply “tell them what they need to know.” But as grandkids reach their teens, what they really need you to be is a reliable consultant.
The Truth About Ambitious Parents (Tuesday 7 April, 2020)This new global quarantine has turned every home into a homeschool and has removed the possibility for most activities that parents are accustomed to using to keep their children busy. Consequently, parents are stepping up to the parenting and education plate like never before.
A Challenging, Early Journey Home from Our Mission in Morocco (Monday 6 April, 2020)Flights home via Istanbul, London, and directly from Casablanca to Atlanta had been booked and canceled due to sudden Moroccan travel bans. We were leaving, we weren’t, yes, no, maybe, no. Meanwhile, Moroccan police patrolled the streets of Rabat blasting disconcerting Arabic warnings of some sort. The call to prayer still rang forth comfortingly predictable five times daily, but now Moroccans were banned from the mosque.
Help for Distressed Couples in Quarantine (Monday 6 April, 2020)Sheltering in place is tough for most people, but it's especially difficult for couples who were already distressed before they were required to spend days on end together. In this episode, I share eleven ways distressed couples can manage these difficult dynamics.
Sunday Morning Session Will Include Worldwide Solemn Assembly With Hosanna Shout (Saturday 4 April, 2020)Solemn assemblies are special, sacred meetings held for a variety of holy purposes. They require Latter-day Saints to bring an elevated sense of spirituality with them into the meeting. These assemblies have included the sustaining of new Church presidents, the dedication of a temple or another significant building, the introduction of new scripture, the instruction of priesthood leaders and other special gatherings.
How this 1979 Conference Talk Profoundly Addressed Teaching Our Children in Isolation (Thursday 2 April, 2020)“How would you pass the test, parents, if your family was isolated from the Church and you had to supply all religious training?...Tell me, how much of the gospel would your children know, if all they knew is what they had been taught at home?" President A. Theodore Tuttle asked an audience nearly 40 years ago. His admonitions and advice are profoundly applicable to us today.
Looking Forward to General Conference: Similarities between King Benjamin and President Nelson (Wednesday 1 April, 2020)There are interesting similarities between the callings, invitations, gatherings, and emphasis of King Benjamin and President Russell M. Nelson.
27 Ways the Church is Prepared for the COVID-19 Pandemic (Wednesday 1 April, 2020)Over the past decade, Church leaders have increasingly focused on strengthening faith in Heavenly Father and in His Son Jesus Christ. In retrospect, we can see the evidence of many ways that God has prepared His Church for the COVID-19 pandemic—and other calamities yet to come.
The Secret Power We All Could Access, Yet We Don’t (Wednesday 1 April, 2020)During these times of quarantine there’s an activity we all can pursue. It will bless us immediately. Yet we avoid it.
The Coronavirus, Charles Dickens, and Heber J. Grant (Tuesday 31 March, 2020)With the world mired in a coronavirus pandemic, I needed to do something productive. So, I decided to tackle a long-put-off project of going through several boxes of books. I was soon rewarded with the discovery of a 1928 copy of the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants and Pearl of Great Price which had a letter written by Heber J. Grant glued to the inside cover. Read his inspired words here.
Staying Connected and Having Fun While Stuck Inside (Tuesday 31 March, 2020)How often have we lamented shortened summer vacations as schools begin their practices and tryouts earlier and earlier in August? It’s time to look at stay-at-home orders as the blessing they can be. Let me share a few things our family and friends are doing.
200 years later, the story of the Restoration is the story of overcoming adversity (Tuesday 31 March, 2020)A wildly contagious flu with no vaccine in sight. Missionaries called home. Temples closed. General conference altered. Members asked to practice social distancing and preventive hygiene. A government edict to shut down all meetings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The year was 1918.
Illuminate Podcast: Why you should share your addiction recovery story (and how) (Sunday 29 March, 2020)Building an authentic community around those struggling with pornography addiction and betrayal trauma is essential for recovery. Steven, from Unashamed Unafraid, shares his experience of hearing how many couples have shared their story of addiction recovery.
There is Sunshine In My Soul Today (Sunday 29 March, 2020)It’s a choice to shake-off the shell-shock and find the strength and inspiration we need to make the most of these most amazing days leading up to General Conference. Here are my 10 favorite blessings of the COVID-19 pandemic.
What your children need most from you right now (Sunday 29 March, 2020)A friend asked my husband and I, “What do you do when your kids talk back?” I’m slow on the uptake, but my hubby answered immediately, “I listen.”
Prevention is Still the Best Medicine (Thursday 26 March, 2020)The headlines and newscasts are filled with fear and dread over the latest possible global virus pandemic. Many of the past warnings and forecasts never actually materialized as promoted, but notwithstanding revisiting the Word of Wisdom is appropriate at this time.
Struggling with 100% Home-Centered Church?: The “DRAWN IN” Series for Families is Here to Help! (Wednesday 25 March, 2020)With the “Home-Centered Church” principle being taken to a whole new level in the past few weeks; now more than ever, families are looking for ways to enhance their study of the gospel AT HOME. Especially families with children. David Bowman, creator of the DRAWN IN series, hopes his videos can help! Check out this episode celebrating the bicentennial of the First Vision.
First Presidency Temporarily Closes All Temples (Wednesday 25 March, 2020)After careful and prayerful consideration, and with a desire to be responsible global citizens, we have decided to suspend all temple activity Churchwide at the end of the day on March 25, 2020.
Big Porn Seeks to Capitalize on the Pandemic (Tuesday 24 March, 2020)In an attempt to stop our health-care systems from crashing amid the COVID-19 global pandemic, many are stuck in self-isolation, facing the stress of joblessness and indefinite uncertainty. At such a juncture, many men may well be wondering whether they picked the wrong week to quit pornography.
Hear Him! How to better recognize the revelation the Lord is already giving us (Monday 23 March, 2020)For the bicentennial celebration of the First Vision, President Russell M. Nelson invited us “to think deeply and often about this key question: How do you hear Him?” Answering the following questions will help us hear Him better and more often by recognizing the revelation we are already receiving.
The Book of Enos and Covenantal Redemption (Monday 23 March, 2020)One of the beautiful gems of the Book of Mormon is the Book of Enos. This little book packs in so much literary beauty, doctrinal truths, and applicable lessons that never dim with time. And the covenants of God are seamlessly woven into the tapestry of Enos’s testimony and experience.
Free Webinar: Creating Strong Family Culture During Catastrophe (Sunday 22 March, 2020)Since the majority of the world is now keeping themselves distant from people outside their immediate families, the role of family in all of our lives becomes more clear. How do we create a strong family culture through a catastrophe, strengthen family unity, and improve communication?
Come Follow Me for Sunday School: “He Works in Me to Do His Will”, Enos – Words of Mormon (Sunday 22 March, 2020)In this week’s readings, we will cover almost three hundred years of Nephite history. Most of our other readings contain only a few decades of history, at most. So, put on your seat belts, because we will be traveling at light speed. . . Well, almost.
Come Follow Me Podcast #13, Enos-Words of Mormon, “He Works in Me to do His Will” (Thursday 19 March, 2020)I remember, following Enos’s example, of going to the woods to pray in my life, in fact, more than once. I don’t think the location matters, but there is something magnificent to learn about prayer from Enos in his book.
Can You Do Anything More to Protect Yourself Against the Coronavirus? (Thursday 19 March, 2020)We feel almost helpless as the coronavirus sweeps across more than 178 countries in a very short time. We wash our hands. We stay inside. Is there anything more we can be doing?
Your Hardest Family Question: How do I have a good marriage when my husband has Asperger’s Syndrome? (Thursday 19 March, 2020)My husband is on the autism spectrum. He is highly intelligent, holds a PhD, has held admirable employment, and in many ways is shockingly gifted. But he is emotionally absent. I would like some support in dealing with that as a spouse.
Jacob 5 and the Allegory of the Olive Tree (Tuesday 17 March, 2020)Have you ever felt worried about someone you loved? Have you ever shared loving advice or counsel with someone who was at a decision point in their lives and you felt the weight of responsibility to teach them well? That is what Jacob felt when teaching the Nephites at the temple.
Come, Follow Me for Individuals and Families: “He Works In Me To Do His Will”, Enos-Words of Mormon (Tuesday 17 March, 2020)Sometimes a concise block of scripture can be especially powerful. Enos, Jarom, Omni, and Words of Mormon comprise 10 pages of the Book of Mormon. Yet, what lessons we learn in the pages about mighty prayer and forgiveness, the influence of righteous parents, offering our whole souls to God, and the wise purposes of the Lord.
Staying Emotionally Healthy During a Pandemic (Monday 16 March, 2020)How do we stay emotionally healthy in the midst of a global pandemic? In this special episode, I team up with Amy Cluff, a therapist who specializes in working with betrayal trauma and child/family therapy, to talk about specific ways we can all maintain our emotional health when facing these unprecedented global fears and uncertainties.
President Nelson Shares Message of Hope During COVID-19 Outbreak (Sunday 15 March, 2020)As worry and uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak continues and regular worship services of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have been suspended worldwide, President Russell M. Nelson shared the following message of hope with all members.
Temporary Adjustments Made to Temple Worship Around the World (Friday 13 March, 2020)
The First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints sent the following letter March 13, 2020, to Church members around the
VIDEO: Survivor of Brussels Bombing Shares how the Savior Helps Heal All Wounds (Wednesday 11 March, 2020)When the Brussels international airport was bombed in 2016, missionary Richard Norby was terribly burned and injured by shrapnel. Yet in that moment, he knew the Savior was there for him and everything would be OK. Watch him share his story in a new video from the Church YouTube channel.
How COVID-19 Will Impact the April 2020 General Conference (Wednesday 11 March, 2020)Sessions will be done virtually; members will not gather at the Conference Center in Salt Lake City or at stake centers or meetinghouses in areas where COVID-19 is active.
How this WWII Jewish Refugee Became a Wise Steward of Her Family’s History (Tuesday 10 March, 2020)Margit furiously peddled toward Southern France. The Germans had maneuvered around the Maginot Line by slipping in the through the Ardennes Forest and Belgium. Now they were thundering toward Paris. World War II was now knocking at Margit’s front door.
Persuasion not Pushiness (Monday 9 March, 2020)There are better ways to persuade others to your point of view than pushing them.
The Origin and Significance of Jacob’s Temple Language (Monday 9 March, 2020)Jacob, the brother of Nephi, was one of the all-time most powerful prophets of God. Having been born in a wilderness of affliction, he grew up in the protection and blessings of his brother Nephi to fully trust God. (Jacob 1-4)
COVID-19: No Need to Panic (Monday 9 March, 2020)The threat is still growing but we can be ready to deal with whatever comes.
Preparing for Conference: The Much More Personal 1832 Account of the First Vision (Wednesday 4 March, 2020)The first time the Prophet Joseph wrote of his First Vision experience was in 1832, while in Kirtland, Ohio. He would write or dictate his experience four times during his lifetime, but this first account is uniquely a personal one, highlighting the intimate experience he had speaking with God and the Savior face to face.
Two Words That Can Help You Move Forward (Wednesday 4 March, 2020)We’ve all procrastinated, felt gripped by fear, and doubted our abilities. Maybe the solution is simpler than we think.
Following Confusion, Letter Released Clarifying BYU’s Honor Code (Wednesday 4 March, 2020)"The moral standards of the Church did not change with the recent release of the General Handbook or the updated Honor Code," Elder Johnson writes, "There is and always has been more to living the Lord's standard of a chaste and virtuous life than refraining from sexual relations outside of marriage."
Elder Callister on evidence for the Book of Mormon and why arguments against it fall apart (Tuesday 3 March, 2020)In his Tuesday, March 3, LDS Business College devotional held in the Assembly Hall on Temple Square, Elder Callister listed past and present criticisms lobbied against the Book of Mormon and gave evidences of the book’s truthfulness. However, “there is none more certain or sure than that of the Spirit,” he said. “It is the witness of all witnesses — the evidence of all evidences.”
How Extended Families can Impact Children’s Resiliency (Monday 2 March, 2020)You may have missed an important discussion surrounding the health and future of the nuclear family sparked by an article titled “The Nuclear Family Was a Mistake” written by David Brooks and published in The Atlantic. To those of us who believe that the nuclear family is the foundation of flourishing societies, Brooks’ title was shocking, but his article makes an important point.
What Should We Offer in Sacrifice? (Monday 2 March, 2020)God has always invited-and frequently commanded-his children to offer sacrifices to him. We also must give the Lord what he wants, and we must give it in such a way that our sacrifice is a great indicator of our love.
Steeped in Conflict? Here’s How to Break Free (Monday 2 March, 2020)An eye for an eye, it’s been said, will only make the whole world blind. Unfortunately, some people didn’t get the memo. The result is turmoil, conflict, broken relationships, and missed opportunities.
What You Would Need for a Self-Quarantine (Sunday 1 March, 2020)The news on the coronavirus gets worse with each hour that passes. More travel advisories have been issued, the virus is now on every continent except Antarctica. A self-quarantine for you and me has become more and more likely.
Illuminate Podcast: Couples Share Their Stories of Addiction Recovery (Sunday 1 March, 2020)Kayla had no idea when getting married to Steven that he was viewing pornography daily and participating in prostitution. In this episode, they discuss Steven coming forward, early recovery, being disfellowshipped, excommunicated, and what they are doing in recovery today.
The Pattern and Template of Salvation Revealed in 2 Nephi 31-33 (Sunday 1 March, 2020)Did you know that the word temple and template come from the same root word? Like templates, temples provide patterns of structured guidance. Temples teach us heavenly patterns for how to live and understand God and His children.
Come Follow Me Podcast #10 “This is the Way”, 2 Nephi 31-33 (Thursday 27 February, 2020)In all our readings and studies of 2 Nephi chapters 31-33, have we possibly missed some critical teachings for our own spiritual progress? Let’s study together and see what we can find out.
Preventing the Leading Causes of Death in 2020 (Thursday 27 February, 2020)What are the leading causes of death and are there preventions you can do to stave them off? All of these causes of death are impacted by blood flow and oxygen delivery and the question is, what can you do to impact that? As it turns out, there is an answer.
Looking Back at 10 Years of RootsTech (Thursday 27 February, 2020)As RootsTech marks its 10th year, we look back on how it has made history—and celebrate its success.
Prophet Issues Important Invitation As Historic Conference Draws Near (Wednesday 26 February, 2020)President Russell M. Nelson of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints shared an important video message today through his social media channels. Watch the video here.
Going Beyond Mindfulness to Heartfulness (Wednesday 26 February, 2020)Just studying, just knowing what we know is not enough. Jesus wants us to put our faith into action, to bless the poor and imprisoned, to “do” as much as we “know”.
In New Supreme Court Case, Religious Liberty Is at Stake (Wednesday 26 February, 2020)In recent years, local and state governments have forced numerous faith-based adoption and foster care agencies out of business because of their religious beliefs about marriage. While some of those agencies closed with little protest, Catholic Social Services chose to fight back in the courts.
Stream RootsTech This Week (Tuesday 25 February, 2020)The world’s largest family celebration event, RootsTech, is back in Salt Lake City for its 10th anniversary. It will attract 26-30,000 people, representing 55 countries and 49 states and there are several ways to enjoy the event.
Come, Follow Me for Individuals and Families: “This is the Way”, 2 Nephi 31-33 (Tuesday 25 February, 2020)There's something amazing about reading the final words of any prophet as they sit down and seek to synthesize their life's experience into words of counsel to those that follow. Throughout Nephi we loved searching for the phrase, "My Soul Delighteth" to see all the things he felt were most precious about the gospel.
Developing a Healthy Sexual Mindset (Monday 24 February, 2020)Sexuality is not always seen in a positive, healthy light, which causes there to be uncertainty, shame, and uneasiness surrounding this sacred topic. Here are practical tips to change your mindset.
Some Spaces Available with the Proctors on Tour Immediately (Monday 24 February, 2020)If you've been dreaming about seeing the Holy Land or visiting heritage sites in England, we have an opportunity for you. Due some unforeseen circumstances and sicknesses, a few spots have opened up on tours THIS YEAR with Scot and Maurine Proctor.
Contention is a Plague and Too Many of Us Are Infected (Monday 24 February, 2020)Contention is contagious. It infects and it spreads, and will continue to do so until we recognize its danger in the messaging that we accept or promote, and act for change.
A Church Prepared for Crisis: The Timeliness of the Church’s Emphasis on Home-Centered Worship (Sunday 23 February, 2020)In China, all organized religious gatherings are forbidden now to reduce the risk of spreading the virus. Without the ability to meet as usual, the only way to worship now is at home. Fortunately, we have been prepared for that with a curriculum and some practice.
Watch: 7 Videos and Tips to Help You Tackle the Isaiah Chapters in 2 Nephi (Thursday 20 February, 2020)Here are seven great tips (with accompanying resources) that can ease your study of the Isaiah chapters of the Book of Mormon this week.
Your Hardest Family Question: I’m worried my husband isn’t attracted to me anymore (Thursday 20 February, 2020)I walked in on my husband looking at pornography. I was crushed because he knew how I felt about pornography and promised he wouldn’t view it. Now all I can think about is him wanting to look at it.
Six Observations of a Temple Worker (Wednesday 19 February, 2020)Serving as both ordinance worker and patron in the second busiest temple in the world has allowed me to make some interesting discoveries. Here are six observations that I hope will--when carefully considered--improve the experience of those who serve in the house of the Lord.
A Look Inside the New General Handbook for Church Leaders and Members (Wednesday 19 February, 2020)The new handbook for leaders and members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (first announced in January) is now available in English online and in the Gospel Library app. Nine of the 38 chapters have been completely rewritten, and one section of another chapter has been updated.
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: “A Marvelous Work and a Wonder” 2 Nephi 26-30 (Wednesday 19 February, 2020)Nephi mourned because of the destruction of his descendants which he was shown in vision. Because of his great love for him and indeed for all his children, the Lord showed Nephi how his people would be restored to the testimony of Christ through the Gentiles in the last days.
On Giving Advice as a Grandparent and the Use of Duct Tape (Tuesday 18 February, 2020)We understand that these grandchildren are the stewardships of our children and not of us, but we often think we know exactly what would “fix” things that aren’t working. So should we tell them?
Come, Follow Me for Individuals and Families: “A Marvelous Work and a Wonder” 2 Nephi 26-30 (Tuesday 18 February, 2020)Christ is calling us, the men and women of the Church, to help gather scattered Israel. That includes scattered living rooms and scattered weekly schedules and scattered teenage brains and scattered families. We all have different starting points but Christ will meet us wherever we are, thrilled that we’re making any effort to grow closer to him.
How to Win an Argument with God: A Lesson Sponsored by the Corona Virus (Sunday 16 February, 2020)Ever since I participated in debate competitions in high school and maybe before, I have relished the occasional thrill of winning an argument against a smart opponent. Forgive me for bragging, but I can rightfully boast some pretty impressive victories, especially my many victories against the smartest opponent of all: God.
Illuminate Podcast: Being Sensitive to Women Who Struggle with Pornography (Sunday 16 February, 2020)In this episode, I interview Alice Taylor, author of, "Restored: A woman's guide to overcoming pornography addiction." Alice share ways we can become more inclusive of women who struggle and how we can be more sensitive to their struggles.
South Africa’s Second Temple is Dedicated (Sunday 16 February, 2020)Durban South Africa Temple becomes continent’s fifth temple.
Come, Follow Me Podcast #8: “We Rejoice in Christ”, 2 Nephi 11-25 (Thursday 13 February, 2020)It is said that even a speeding bullet couldn’t get through Isaiah—well, let’s try to prove that wrong today. Let’s have some fun studying these seemingly difficult chapters together!
Your Hardest Family Question: Should I have to share my space with adult children? (Thursday 13 February, 2020)My boyfriend lives in Canada and has two adult daughters who still live at home. He told them they can live at home for as long as they like. We are obviously still in the early stages of our relationship. However, we’ve talked about what life would be like if we were to get married and move in together. He thinks I could just move in and live with him and his daughters and share the bathroom with him and his daughter.
Four Tender Love Stories from Past Apostles (Thursday 13 February, 2020)To celebrate Valentine’s Day, I thought I’d share examples of the tender, poignant love stories of a few of our apostles and prophets from the past. These couples typify the joy that can be found in a true eternal companionship whether it’s in those meaningful first meetings or in a lifetime of love, service and positive influence on one another.
Join the Proctors on a 2021 River Cruise for Tulips, Windmills and Old World Charm (Wednesday 12 February, 2020)In all our travels, nothing more totally delights us than a cruise on the Rivers of Europe. Every mile of the way and every curve of the river presents a new view. It is scene upon scene of pure old world charm, up close and personal. That’s why we jumped on the chance to host when Morris Murdock chartered an entire Tulips and Windmill Viking River Cruise—that’s a full, private ship--for spring of 2021 to visit the Netherlands and Belgium.
The Meridian Grandparenting Forum (Monday 10 February, 2020)Here’s the thing: Grandparents don’t talk very much about grandparenting. It’s kind of like 50 years ago when parents didn’t talk very much about parenting. Since then there has been an explosion of writing and talking and listening among parents. We want the same thing to happen with Grandparenting, and we want it to happen right here on Meridian.
Praying Toward the Temple (Sunday 9 February, 2020)As Solomon dedicated the house of the Lord, he asked for temporal and spiritual blessings upon repentant and prayerful Israel, and suggested a course of action for those repentant Israelites that would bless them continuously.
Isaiah 52:1-2 as a Key to Understanding God’s Plan for Us (Sunday 9 February, 2020)When God speaks, we should hearken. To hearken means to both hear and obey. When God repeats Himself, we should hasten to hearken!
Why Worrying Doesn’t Make You a Better Parent (Sunday 9 February, 2020)Somewhere along the way I got the idea that worrying about my kids made me a good mom. Because only neglectful parents walk around blissfully content, right? I finally learned that worry gives me three things I don’t want.
Your Hardest Family Question: How do I support my daughter’s relationship when I disagree with it? (Thursday 6 February, 2020)We have a daughter who is getting serious with a very inactive man. She is a returned missionary and has always had a deep testimony, until recently when she has questioned various church policies and leadership. Naturally, she has found a fellow who agrees with her.
How to Access the Power of Pondering (Wednesday 5 February, 2020)Do you ponder as much as you should? Most of us don’t. How can we fix that?
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: “Oh, How Great the Plan of Our God” (Wednesday 5 February, 2020)I’ve often wondered why Isaiah was so important for us to study. But the question of “Why?” hasn’t helped me nearly as much as the question of “How?” How can we study Isaiah, a book of scripture that Nephi openly admits is difficult for people to understand if they aren’t deeply familiar with the prophesying of the Jews?
Armed Intruder Shot by Police in Incident at Brazil MTC (Wednesday 5 February, 2020)Here is the official statement from the Church on the incident.
Learning from Laman and Lemuel (Monday 3 February, 2020)Anytime we identify only with the heroes of a scriptural story, we may be walking away from an important invitation to grow. It is by seeing ourselves in flawed people that we come to understand what we yet lack and what the Lord would have us do to develop spiritually.
Superbowl Culture Shock (Monday 3 February, 2020)Recently, I saw one of the more incongruous scenes I've encountered. A sweet, young Muslim girl wearing a hijab was at a rental car desk helping people, and right behind her was a large TV screen showing what looked like a scene from a sordid "gentleman's club" with scantily clad women writhing to flashing lights.
Losing My Temper: One Mom Confesses All (Sunday 2 February, 2020)Even as a little girl, I knew I had a fiery temper. I remember watching the extraordinarily sweet singing leader at church and knowing I had a different set of DNA. My teachers taught kindness and I listened and did my best. My best was enough for a long time. Until that summer.
Illuminate Podcast: Women Who Struggle with Pornography (Sunday 2 February, 2020)In this episode I interview Alice Taylor, author of, "Restored: A woman's guide to overcoming pornography addiction." Alice went public with her story of healing from addiction and abuse to help other women know they're not alone and that change is possible.
The Happiness Muscle (Sunday 2 February, 2020)Did you know that laughter has a direct impact on your physical health by lowering blood pressure, increasing healthy blood flow, reducing stress and cortisol levels? It even strengthens the diaphragm?! Perhaps President Nelson’s secret to vibrant physical health is following his own advice to live with joy. Here are some practical tips to get to the “happiness gym” and strengthen your joy today!
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: “We Lived After the Manner of Happiness” 2 Nephi 1-5 (Thursday 30 January, 2020)2 Nephi 1-5 are the final words of Lehi to his children. If you were about to pass on, what would you tell your children?
Are You Hoarding Hurt? (Wednesday 29 January, 2020)Some of us keep a little (or large) box of hurts and injustices that we open frequently, reviewing the unfairnesses of life. If you often find yourself ruminating over past injuries, you may be a hurt hoarder.
Archaeological Evidence for 7 Locations on Lehi’s Journey to the Promised Land (Tuesday 28 January, 2020)While there is still much to learn about the people and stories in the Book of Mormon, some of the best archaeological evidence to support the Book of Mormon comes from Lehi’s journey to the promised land.
Feasting on the Book of Mormon Jewish Style (Tuesday 28 January, 2020)“Bon appetit!” may not seem like an appropriate thing to say before a scripture study session, but studying at a local synagogue taught me otherwise. (Includes free lesson ideas to help you feast in your Come Follow Me study).
Waiting for Answers (Tuesday 28 January, 2020)People who pray learn that the correlation between prayers and answers is not easy to understand. Even people who have experienced dramatic, life-changing answers may encounter times in their lives when they plead for divine help without getting needed answers.
Coronavirus Outbreak: What You Need to Know (Thursday 23 January, 2020)The Coronavirus is making news as it spreads throughout the world. The virus has now arrived in eighteen counties and has no available vaccine. This article is not meant to inspire fear, only to help you examine how prepared you are to care for your family.
How Can God Let Such Awful Things Happen? (Wednesday 22 January, 2020)How can a loving God just stand by when disaster strikes?
Stressed? Maybe Rest Can Be Your New Hustle (Wednesday 22 January, 2020)Paula Rizzo was sitting at her desk at Fox News Channel in New York City when she felt a dull pain below her belly button. Like many hard-charging people might do, she ignored it. Two days later she was in the hospital ER. Her appendix had burst, spreading bacteria like a toxic cluster bomb. She could have died. Needless to say, this was a wake-up call.
What Americans Know About the Holocaust (Wednesday 22 January, 2020)A new Pew Research Center survey finds that most U.S. adults know what the Holocaust was and approximately when it happened, but fewer than half can correctly answer multiple-choice questions about the number of Jews who were murdered or the way Adolf Hitler came to power.
The Right Place – Our Tiny Branch in Africa (Sunday 19 January, 2020)I spent the first 25 years of my life attending very traditional Latter-day Saint wards in the heart of Utah. For the past two years, however, I’ve been part of a very different church situation. We live in Malawi with our two small boys. Although the branch feels very different from any ward I’ve attended before, many of the differences are what make being a part of the branch so joyful.
How Understanding the Great Apostasy Increases our Appreciation for the Restoration (Wednesday 15 January, 2020)There are moments when things click into place, times when seemingly random fragments of thought and information suddenly fit together to form a clear picture in your mind. In my mid-teens, I had such a moment, which altered the way I view the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.
Church Announces Location of India’s First Latter-day Saint Temple (Wednesday 15 January, 2020)The Church has also released an exterior rendering of the planned Benaluru India Temple.
Who We Should Really Look Up to in the Story of Cinderella (Wednesday 15 January, 2020)There’s a secret hidden in many of our favorite tales.
Why “It Came to Pass” Is One of the Most Significant Phrases in the Book of Mormon (Sunday 12 January, 2020)Mark Twain famously quipped that if Joseph Smith would have left out the phrase “it came to pass,” the Book of Mormon would have only been a short pamphlet. We may justifiably join Mark Twain in wondering why this phrase is used so much.
Come Follow Me Book of Mormon Podcast 3, “Come and Partake of the Fruit” — 1 Nephi 8-10 (Thursday 9 January, 2020)This week we are studying one of the pivotal stories in the Book of Mormon, Lehi’s vision of the Tree of Life.
Your Hardest Family Question: My sisters have cut me out of their lives (Thursday 9 January, 2020)Since the death of our mother last year, the relationship I have with my sisters has disintegrated. I'm being accused of posting mean things about them on social media. I have not done any such thing. I love them both and would not do that.
What Sacrifices did Lehi Offer to God in the Wilderness? (Thursday 9 January, 2020)The Prophet Nephi recorded that on several occasions Lehi and his family offered sacrifices during their time in the wilderness. In an important study of Lehi’s wilderness experience, Professor S. Kent Brown provided insight into why Lehi offered more than one kind of sacrifice.
The Land of Disappearing Christians… (Wednesday 8 January, 2020)There were no champagne corks popping, no crystal balls dropping in Wang Yi's new year. The pastor of Early Rain Covenant Church was in prison, spending his second January 1st in a dark cell, charged with a crime Americans commit every day: worshipping Jesus.
Lessons from Dumbledore: Standing Up to Anti-Science Activism (Monday 6 January, 2020)J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter series, is learning exactly what it means to stand up to one’s friends. On December 19, 2019, the politically liberal Rowling made the “audacious” claim that there is a difference between women and transwomen.
Old Photos and New Photos Tell a Compelling Family Story (Monday 6 January, 2020)We’ve all heard the saying that a picture is worth a thousand words – but have you ever written a thousand words to describe both your new and old photos? I have and I love it! Telling a story with an old photo, combined with words, either oral or written, is something special.
My Hospital Miracle (Sunday 5 January, 2020)What can actually happen when we invite God to help us do His work?
Illuminate Podcast: Wendy Ulrich on Forgiving Those Who Betray Us (Sunday 5 January, 2020)In this episode, I interview Dr. Wendy Ulrich, author and therapist, on the subject of forgiveness. We discuss the challenges of forgiving others, especially when there have been serious betrayals.
“I Can See Clearly Now” (Sunday 5 January, 2020)Here are three crystal clear perspectives and tools for your healthiest year ever!
President Nelson Invites Church Members to Share the Restored Gospel (Wednesday 1 January, 2020)"Select your own questions. Design your own plan. Act on any of these invitations to prepare yourself for sharing the important messages of the ongoing Restoration. It is your personal preparation that will help April’s general conference become for you not only memorable but also unforgettable."
6 Steps to Prepare for Intimacy in Marriage (Wednesday 1 January, 2020)Sexual intimacy is one of the most beautiful experiences that a husband and wife can share. It is God’s treasured gift to husband and wife. Without necessary preparation, though, it can be one of the most difficult aspects of marriage to navigate.
7 Short Videos to Kick Off Your Book of Mormon Come Follow Me Study (Wednesday 1 January, 2020)This week we are studying the introductory pages to the Book of Mormon. Among all the amazing resources out there, we have seven videos to help you and your family get started.
Come Follow Me: The First Book of Mormon Podcast of the New Year (Monday 30 December, 2019)“My dear brothers and sisters, I promise that as you prayerfully study the Book of Mormon every day, you will make better decisions—every day. I promise that as you ponder what you study, the windows of heaven will open, and you will receive answers to your own questions and direction for your own life. I promise that as you daily immerse yourself in the Book of Mormon, you can be immunized against the evils of the day…”
Let Today’s Fiasco Anchor Your Family’s Faith Forever (Monday 30 December, 2019)What trial would you accept if you knew it would secure your children’s faith?
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: Introductory Pages of the Book of Mormon (Sunday 29 December, 2019)As we begin our study of the Book of Mormon this year of 2020, my desire is that we will open our eyes to the majesty of the book, and read it in a way that we have never done before.
Your Hardest Family Question: My in-laws have blocked me on social media (Thursday 26 December, 2019)My in-laws have blocked me on social media. They blocked me over three years ago because of a misunderstanding. We have since cleared up the misunderstanding, but they still continue to block me on all social media.
How’s This for a New Years’ Resolution? (Thursday 26 December, 2019)Is there really a way you can keep from being offended, all year?
His Hand in All Things: Including a “Signs and Wonders” Live Drama at His Coming (Tuesday 24 December, 2019)The arrival of Jesus triggered a complicated interrelated set of signs and wonders. These signs seem to me to have characteristics of the technical equipment and setup of a concert presentation of the Messiah oratorio or a play with many acts and scenes—on a hemisphere-wide or world-wide scale.
Getting Your Kids “DRAWN IN” to the Book of Mormon This Coming Year (Monday 23 December, 2019)The brand new DRAWN IN episodes and PDF Downloads are an engaging AND enjoyable resource FOR KIDS to supplement your family’s 2020 “Come Follow Me” study.
Homesick for a Heavenly Home (Monday 23 December, 2019)This is a dangerous rabbit hole to even skirt around, but in the spirit of full disclosure, allow me to confess a longing deeper than usual lately of the very real urgency to go home--not to our little hobby farm in the mountains, but to the Home home from whence we all came.
The $100 Billion ‘Mormon Church’ Story: A Contextual Analysis (Sunday 22 December, 2019)In an age inundated with headlines, the American public has perhaps become accustomed to sighing and shaking their heads with reports of corruption. So, when the headlines pointed at the Church of Jesus Christ this week, the takeaway for many readers was likely clear-cut. But, the story beyond the headline merits a closer look.
Food for Thought: A 911 Dispatcher Hears the Hidden Plea for Help When a Woman Orders Pizza (Sunday 22 December, 2019)How many times have people in our lives made hidden pleas for help that we could have acted on if we had been listening carefully, not just to the literal words ("yeah, everything is fine"), but the emotion and reality behind the words?
How the Church of Jesus Christ Uses Tithes and Donations (Sunday 22 December, 2019)The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints uses the sacred tithes and generous donations of its members in worldwide efforts to love God and neighbor. In light of recent media stories that have misrepresented the Church’s approach, the Church provides the following summary.
Come, Follow Me Podcast #50–“He That Overcometh Shall Inherit All Things”, Revelation 12-22 (Thursday 19 December, 2019)Here’s the latest breaking news: The major war that was going on in the pre-mortal world between the forces of Lucifer and the forces of Michael has continued-but it has changed locations. All of Lucifer’s forces have been moved to this earth and continue to wage war against the Saints and the followers of Christ and His Gospel.
Your Hardest Family Question: Is it possible to overcome lust? (Thursday 19 December, 2019)I am a recovering addict, but I seem to never be able to overcome lust. My earliest memories are about sexual things and I have struggled with pornography off and on my entire life. No matter how well I’m doing I cannot seem to overcome lust and frankly I don’t know what success looks like.
The Third Greatest Christmas Story Ever Told – Part 3 (Thursday 19 December, 2019)Finally, Dickens happened upon a most extraordinary thought: change in human behavior does not and will not come from an external force. It will never be permanently engaged by device or demand. Change must begin and come from within.
One American Sign Language Word We All Should Know (Wednesday 18 December, 2019)Hearing or not, we all need to learn this key distinction.
#LightTheWorld: The Mentor Whose Encouragement Changed My Life (Wednesday 18 December, 2019)My teacher never knew that what he said brought me a promise from my patriarchal blessing that I had never understood.
Let’s Traditionate! (Wednesday 18 December, 2019)Isn’t memory interesting? Who knows what experiences will later become clear memories, and which moments will be forgotten? One thing we do know is that strong memories often spring from strong traditions. Without realizing it, we may be “traditionating” on the regular. We just don’t always know what children will consider traditions.
Warm Hands for Christmas (Tuesday 17 December, 2019)"Well, I’ve been thinking. This is the last day the stores will be open before Christmas. I have two quarters….” Papa had a little tease in his voice. My heart, ears, and hopes listened. “With the fifty cents,” he continued, “I thought maybe Chester would like to walk up to J. C. Penny with me to buy some gloves for him.” “Oh, Papa! Thank you. My hands do get cold,” I said through the potatoes.
Heart of Africa: Honoring the Language of the People (Tuesday 17 December, 2019)On the African continent, there are approximately 2000 dialects. The chief one in the Congo is Lingala. My father was aware that if I was to be effective in my work there, I should speak the “heart language.” At least once, he scolded me: “You aren’t studying Lingala, Margaret. You need to do better.”
Church responds to allegations made by former employee in IRS complaint (Tuesday 17 December, 2019)David A. Nielsen, a former employee for the investment arm of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, filed an IRS complaint last month alleging the church should be forced to pay taxes on returns made from invested tithing funds and challenging the faith’s investment strategy, humanitarian efforts and tax-exemption status.
The Third Greatest Christmas Story Ever Told – Part 2 (Monday 16 December, 2019)The following is part two in a three-part series on Charles Dickens' creation of A Christmas Carol.
#LightTheWorld: A Vow to be Positive (Monday 16 December, 2019)Some might think that optimistic people are fake or somehow disconnected from reality, but I know for a fact that positivity is one of our choices no matter what circumstances are before us.
Bethlehem and the Gift of the Family (Monday 16 December, 2019)Rather than being a burden to society, the family, when reasonably whole – not perfect, for that is neither necessary nor attainable – is the first line of defense when faced with threats internal and external, and it begins with its core: marriage.
Elder Soares Dedicates the Arequipa Peru Temple (Sunday 15 December, 2019)Peru’s third temple was dedicated Sunday by Elder Ulisses Soares of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Come, Follow Me for Individuals and Families: “Glory, and Power, Be unto … the Lamb for Ever”, Revelations 1-11 (Thursday 5 December, 2019)As we come to an end of the New Testament we find that we have come full circle from Genesis. The days that marked creation are now marked by angels, trumpets and destruction that is meant to prepare the earth for its sanctification and Celestial glory.
#LightTheWorld: Ellen Patton, a True Example of Christlike Service (Sunday 1 December, 2019)Every time I buy a book of stamps, I think of my beloved friend Ellen Patton who purchases nearly a thousand stamps a year. How does a single woman living in Boston have so many friends? She creates them.
Come, Follow Me for Families and Individuals: “God is Love”, 1-3 John, Jude (Tuesday 26 November, 2019)1 John is one of my favorite books in all of scripture. It brings us right home to God’s nature, who He is, and what He is about. The truth that God is love is an overarching theme woven into almost every verse. Who better to teach this principle than John, “the disciple whom Jesus loved?”
Choosing Gratitude (Thursday 21 November, 2019)You can see what a trap this is. The more we have, the more we expect. We get richer and richer but our discontents and demands grow apace. The effect is that we have richer, fuller, more pleasant lives than kings and queens of past ages, but we are not one whit more grateful. So, what is to be done?
Church Unveils Plans for 2019 Light the World Campaign (Thursday 14 November, 2019)In what is becoming an annual event, the Church is launching its fourth Light the World Campaign. Here's what's new and exciting this year.
Here’s a Fast Way to Earn Some Christmas Cash (Tuesday 12 November, 2019)You’ve been purchasing the First Vision Bicentennial Calendar by the thousands and we want to share the wealth. It might be the easiest way you’ve ever earned some extra Christmas cash.
“Scientists are slowly waking up to an inconvenient truth.” (Thursday 31 October, 2019)Paul Davies does not appear to be a Christian or a conventional theist in any normal sense of such terms. He is simply someone who pays attention to the data of physics and to the conditions apparently required for the appearance of life and who finds what he has found to be rather strange.
Exciting New Book of Abraham Discovery Published: Shinehah (Wednesday 30 October, 2019)Last week Pearl of Great Price Central published a Book of Abraham Insight that explores the very real probability that the word Shinehah in the Book of Abraham is attested in ancient Egyptian texts from Abraham’s day.
The False Hope of the Transgender Language Police (Tuesday 29 October, 2019)Always, a brand of period pads, recently announced it will take the Venus symbol off its products. Always is “committed to diversity and inclusion and are on a continual journey to understand the needs of all of our consumers,” the brand noted in a statement. Because in 2019, it’s apparently controversial to say that only women get periods.
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: 1 & 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon (Wednesday 23 October, 2019)Paul challenges us to “be an example of the believers” (1 Tim. 4:12). How do we do this? How can we become model followers of Jesus Christ, so that others will find in our example relevance and meaning for their own lives?
The Road to Sunderpur: A Legacy of Hope (Thursday 17 October, 2019)In the midst of a desperate situation on the outskirts of India, where the leprosy-affected had no place to call home, a community began to flourish because of the sacrifice and work of one man. Looking to his example, we hope to build a school. Meridian readers have already raised over $190,000 towards that goal. We are so close, can you help us reach $200,000?
The Power of a Single Egg (Tuesday 15 October, 2019)An attempt to improve the nutrition of the children of the leprosy-affected in Bihar, India showed us how powerful something as simple as an egg can be in the lives of those in the school. Meridian has now raised over $180,000 of the $200,000 goal. Have you donated yet?
Church Issues Statement Opposing Proposed Utah Psychologist Licensing Act Rule (Tuesday 15 October, 2019)The Church has released the following statement in connection with comments filed by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Family Services regarding a proposed professional licensing rule governing sexual orientation and gender identity change efforts.
Into the Heart of a Leprosy Colony: A Lesson in Resetting my Priorities (Thursday 10 October, 2019)Our generous Meridian readers have raised nearly $180,000, help us make that final push to $200,000. Every penny goes towards building a school for the children of the leprosy-affected. Here is the story of an Indian military leader whose unlikely conversion to the Gospel saw him leaving the life he knew to serve people he didn't.
Safety in Chapels Is the Responsibility of Every Latter-day Saint (Thursday 10 October, 2019)Update to security guidelines is a response to ‘changing conditions around the world’.
Answering Your Questions about Leprosy (Monday 7 October, 2019)We have now raised more than $170,000 towards our $200,000 goal to build a school for the children of the leprosy-affected. Here we answer some questions readers may have about the disease and how it affects the lives of those that contract it.
Changes Announced to Strengthen Youth, New Young Women’s Theme Introduced (Sunday 6 October, 2019)New adjustments were announced over several sessions of general conference Saturday that were focused around giving the youth of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints greater opportunities for leadership and growth.
Your Hardest Family Question: My husband still has feelings for his ex-girlfriend (Thursday 3 October, 2019)My husband was recently hospitalized and I came across an email he had sent to his college girlfriend expressing that he still had feelings for her and that he thinks about her and wishes that he could hold her tight and just talk about old times. Needless to say, I was devastated.
Scriptural Support for the Recent Policy Change Regarding Witnesses (Wednesday 2 October, 2019)On Wednesday, President Russel M. Nelson made a wonderful announcement that adjusts previous requirements for witnesses of temple ordinances. In case anyone was wondering if there is scriptural precedence for such a revelation, I would suggest there is.
Another Historic Announcement as General Conference Leadership Sessions Begin (Wednesday 2 October, 2019)As is customary for the October general conference General Authorities and General Officers of the Church met this morning to be instructed by the First Presidency. This instruction, also sent as a First Presidency letter to Church leaders, included a new Church policy related to the witnessing of ordinances, including baptisms performed in chapels and temples.
Church announces historic change, enabling women to be witnesses for baptisms and temple sealings (Wednesday 2 October, 2019)President Russell M. Nelson announced a historic change in policy for women of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that will enable them to act as witnesses in two of the faith’s core saving ordinances, baptisms and temple sealings.
HHS Secretary Tells UN General Assembly: ‘There Is No International Right to an Abortion’ (Thursday 26 September, 2019)The U.S. health and human services secretary condemned efforts to provide international access to abortion at a United Nations conference Monday.
Hope is Rising! (Wednesday 25 September, 2019)We are more than half-way to our goal of raising $200,000 for a school for the children of the leprosy-affected in Bihar. Yes, our remarkable readers have already raised over $110,000! Thank you. Here is more about the amazing impact that Rising Star Outreach has already had among these children.
7 Ways to Raise Responsible Kids (Wednesday 18 September, 2019)We all want responsible kids. So what’s the best way to get there?
Season Three Filming of Book of Mormon Live-Action Series Nears Completion (Thursday 5 September, 2019)“We’re back in action,” Aaron Merrell, senior producer of the series, said while on set. “Season one was really exciting because we shot the story of Nephi and Lehi’s journey through the wilderness. In season two, we were able to capture a lot of really great doctrines and teachings. … [For season three] it’s the best of both worlds. It’s packaged around beautiful stories about people living the principles of the gospel.”
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: “Ye Are the Body of Christ”, 1 Corinthians 8-13 (Wednesday 21 August, 2019)Without charity, we are “nothing,” says the Apostle Paul. We may speak with the tongues of angels, we may have the gift of prophecy, we may understand all mysteries and all knowledge, we may have all faith, we may give ourselves up to martyrdom, we may even give away everything we have to the poor; but without charity, none of this matters.
First Temple in Portugal Opens to the Public (Tuesday 13 August, 2019)The Lisbon Portugal Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has been completed and is now open for public tours and information.
The Power of Helping Your Children Remember Who They Are (Sunday 11 August, 2019)“Remember who you are.” It’s a simple phrase, but one with deep meaning. I have said it many times as my children have walked out the door – off to school, out with friends or on a date. But in this instance, let’s add one more line – “Remember who you are…and where you came from.” Remembering is powerful. But now, helping youth remember is more. It is vital.
Boastful? Arrogant? No, he wasn’t. (Monday 22 July, 2019)Some critics like to use this quotation attributed to Joseph Smith as a weapon against him. Here's why it doesn't mean what they think it does.
Layton Utah Temple Site Announced (Monday 15 July, 2019)The temple, which was announced in April 2018 by Church President Russell M. Nelson, will be built on an 11.8-acre site located at the corner of Oak Hills Drive and Rosewood Lane in Layton City, about 25 miles north of Salt Lake City. Plans call for a three-story temple of approximately 87,000 square feet.
British Isles Latter-day Saint Church History and Literary Tour Summer 2020! (Sunday 7 July, 2019)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 2 – July 13, 2020.
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: “What Wilt Thou Have Me to Do?”, Acts 6-9 (Wednesday 3 July, 2019)As the number of disciples grew, the Twelve chose and set apart seven men to assist them in ministering to widows and those in need, two of whom were Stephen and Philip. “Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders among the people”. Certain men hired false witnesses to speak against Stephen, and he was tried before the Sanhedrin. They accused him of attempting to change the customs and rites of the law of Moses, and of threatening to destroy the temple.
Pope Francis makes change to Lord’s Prayer (Thursday 6 June, 2019)Lead us not into 'mistranslation'. Pope Francis officially approved a change to the most famous prayer in Christianity.
Latter-day Prophet Meets with Tongan King and Queen (Thursday 23 May, 2019)President Nelson visits a kingdom rich in Church history.
How I Learned the Secret to Pain Free Ministering (Sunday 19 May, 2019)“Ouch?” I thought to myself while doing a stretch at our ward’s Relief Society yoga class. The pain in my hip continued to increase. Watching me hobble in and out of stake conference and squirm on the bench during the meeting, my ministers were waiting in front of our home when we arrived. They announced that they were going to give me a blessing. I offered no resistance. The words of the blessing taught me an unexpected lesson.
Come, Follow Me Podcast #17, “I am the Good Shepherd”, John 7-10 (Thursday 25 April, 2019)Have you ever wondered why John the Beloved included the story of the woman taken in adultery in his record? Surely he had hundreds of stories he could have chosen to complete his testimony—why this particular story? We’re going to explore at least three things about this tender encounter that you may have never seen before.
We Need Children Even More than They Need Us (Monday 22 April, 2019)As a culture, we tend to focus on how important adult influence is in the lives of children, how much they depend on us, and how challenging that dependence can be. We say almost nothing about how much we need and depend on them. Yet an understanding of what children do for us is central to any conception of how we can thrive as a civilization. In fact, we may need children even more than they need us.
I Will Not Fail Thee, Nor Forsake Thee (Monday 22 April, 2019)I am grateful for the determination with which the Lord hangs on to His children. The scriptures have taught me many times that God will not forsake me. I am pleased to know that He finds me worth fighting for. He believes that you are worth fighting for as well.
Public Open House Begins for Oklahoma City Oklahoma Temple (Monday 22 April, 2019)The public is invited to visit the newly renovated Oklahoma City Oklahoma Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. An open house begins Wednesday, April 24, 2019, and runs through Wednesday, May 1, 2019, excluding Sunday, April 28, 2019.
Meridian is Fixed! We Have a Thank You Gift for You. (Sunday 21 April, 2019)It’s been a rough couple of weeks on Meridian. For more than 18 years we’ve used the URL ldsmag.com. It was shorter than writing meridianmagazine.com and easy to remember and pass on. But the day President Russell M. Nelson asked us to not use LDS or Mormon as a description any more, we bought the URL latterdaysaintmag.com. We’ve been poised to move the site to that new address ever since. But we couldn't have anticipated the issues the transition would bring. Now we'd like to thank you for your patience.
Church Leaders Offer Words of Sorrow and Comfort Following Bombings in Sri Lanka (Sunday 21 April, 2019)"We are deeply saddened on this Easter Sunday by the bomb blasts in Sri Lanka. We offer our heartfelt condolences and sincere prayers to all of those affected by these tragic events." Read the full statement here.
Plans Unveiled for Salt Lake Temple Renovation (Saturday 20 April, 2019)Details and project renderings have been released regarding the upcoming closure and renovation of the historic Salt Lake Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, including a virtual walkthrough of the plans that you can see here.
Where Will Peace Begin? (Wednesday 17 April, 2019)I had not expected this. The sorrow, the heaviness in my heart. A trip to the Holy Land, led by my brother Steve, had inspired me as I traced the footsteps of Jesus Christ and focused on His life and teachings. But an excursion to the Golan Heights had me standing on the crest of Mount Bental in a biting wind. My feet were planted on Israeli occupied soil, but my eyes were fixed over the razor wire border, gazing into Syria.
Sharpening That Pencil for Life’s Next Test (Wednesday 17 April, 2019)Everybody faces adversities in life. That’s plural for a reason. Among other purposes, we’re here to be tested. Sometimes we pray for a get-out-of-trials-free card, but that isn’t the plan. And is it possible that sometimes, we are a test for somebody else?
Sunday Will Come (Wednesday 17 April, 2019)I always knew that Sunday was a holy day – sanctified by God as a day of rest and worship: a day to renew our baptismal covenants through the taking of the Sacrament. It is also a day in which we study the gospel, perform service and refrain from any worldly activities. However, it was Elder Wirthlin’s powerful message--reminding me of the most important Sunday morning in history--that taught me Sunday is more than the above – much, much more!
Sharpening That Pencil for Life’s Next Test-duplicate-1 (Wednesday 17 April, 2019)Part of the plan is to accept the plan.
The Great Sign of the Gathering of Israel (Tuesday 16 April, 2019)March 26th, 2030, is not only the 200th anniversary of the publishing of the Book of Mormon, it is also the date of the fulfillment of one of the most important prophecies in world history. Both Enoch and the Savior foresaw this event, and declared it to be the sign of the beginning of the Lord’s work, to get the world ready for the Second Coming.
Why Do Some Husbands and Wives Cheat and Betray Their Covenants? (Tuesday 16 April, 2019)Few things are more devastating than learning that a partner’s been unfaithful. You commit yourself, your life, your time, your energy, and your heart to someone, and they betray all of it. Does your spouse legitimately care about you? How did this happen? Can you trust that they’ll never do this again? Let’s break these questions down.
Come, Follow Me for Individuals and Families: Matthew 18; Luke 10 (Tuesday 16 April, 2019)The questions to ask God are not so much how we can teach our children the principles in the lesson for the week. Instead we are trying to ask God to help us know how to use the scripture passages for the week to make progress against the challenges in our lives and in our family. How can we use these principles to help our ten-year-old manage her rage? How can these stories help our teenage son be more aware of those around him? How can Christ’s words here help me to develop more patience?
“If Thou Endure it Well”: In Memory of Meridian Author Ted Gibbons (Monday 15 April, 2019)We at Meridian Magazine are sad to announce the passing of one of our beloved authors, Ted Gibbons, on Friday after a 10-year battle with cancer. Brother Gibbons has provided years of inspiring and insightful articles on Meridian and has touched the hearts and the lives of countless readers.
Hope from ashes: Why the Notre Dame fire is a symbol of rebirth during Holy Week (Monday 15 April, 2019)"If there is a moment when Christians should be ready to mourn the death of something, but to believe in the resurrection of something, it's Holy Week," said Father Brien McCarthy. "It is my belief that something is going to rise from these ashes," he said.
Elder Renlund Dedicates Kinshasa Temple in a Historic Occasion for Latter-day Saints (Monday 15 April, 2019)A key milestone, a blessing for Central Africa.
Does That Face Look Familiar? (Wednesday 10 April, 2019)Have you ever visited ancestral lands looking for distant relatives?
An Easter Message from the First Presidency (Wednesday 10 April, 2019)The First Presidency released the following inspiring Easter message via the Newsroom of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Come, Follow Me for Sunday School: One of the Overlooked Beauties of Easter (Wednesday 10 April, 2019)Our hearts are stirred at Easter time as we realize the depths of the love of the Savior for each one of us. We rejoice in the joy of the resurrection and the immortality of all men. But, to me, the essence of the beauty of the Easter story is not only what happened on Calvary and in Gethsemane, but what happened in the “world of spirits, when Christ visited the dead and “liberated the captives." To me, this is one of the most exquisite beauties of the restored gospel.
The Meaning of the Name of the Book of Mormon (Tuesday 9 April, 2019)The book is named after the ancient Prophet/Warrior Leader/Writer/and Editor, Mormon, who created metal plates with his own hands; inherited wagon-loads of Nephite records; edited their teachings down into one single set of plates. But do you know where that prophet got his name and what that implies about the book's title?
What We Can Learn About Leadership From Christ’s Original Calling of the 70 (Tuesday 9 April, 2019)Luke 10 begins with the Savior calling the 70 and sending them to the harvest. It is no coincidence, in the choices of the master teacher, that this all takes place during the fall harvest season. This calling of the 70, to aid in the harvest of souls during the meridian of time, is but the portent of the yet unfulfilled prophecies of the great harvest of souls in the end-times.
Religious freedom on death row: How a new lawsuit affects a growing debate (Tuesday 9 April, 2019)A new lawsuit could resolve growing conflict over the religious freedom rights of death row inmates, which have been in the spotlight since the Supreme Court issued two controversial and seemingly contradictory orders in recent months.
Prophet Announces Eight New Temples (Sunday 7 April, 2019)President Nelson also notes coming renovation of pioneer-era temples, including the Salt Lake Temple.
We Need Charity, but We Also Need Clarity (Wednesday 3 April, 2019)Without charity we are nothing—but if you read that wrong, you also realize that without clarity we are nothing.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Receives Official Recognition in Kuwait (Wednesday 3 April, 2019)“We are grateful to the Government of Kuwait and in particular to His Highness, Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al -Sabah, Emir of Kuwait, for his exemplary leadership in allowing freedom of worship in the State of Kuwait, in particular for the expatriate workforce," said Bishop Terry Harradine, leader of the Kuwait congregation.
The Rising Generation in Rome (Wednesday 13 March, 2019)How is the rising generation of Church members faring in this world that is becoming devastatingly more difficult? The values which we took for granted as the bedrock of life not that long ago have been abandoned in our society. That is one of the questions we hoped to explore when we came to the Rome Temple dedication. How are the YSA’s of the Church doing in Rome and across Europe?
Why They Can’t Stay Away: 3 Missionaries Returning to Italy (Tuesday 12 March, 2019)As we interviewed people in line for the Rome Temple dedication, we found that more often than not, couples and families were there because they were former missionaries or mission presidents who had served in Italy years before. Many of them never imagined a temple could come to Italy in their lifetimes. Here are three of their moving stories.
Come, Follow Me for Individuals and Families: Lesson Helps for Matthew 13; Luke 8; 13 (Tuesday 12 March, 2019)This week we get to discuss many of the powerful stories that Jesus uses to teach us. I love the way Christ’s parables change to suit our needs and apply at a different level every time we visit them. This week we can re-discover with our children the magic of these teachings and encourage them to want to revisit them over and over again so that they can witness this chameleon magic in their own lives.
Entire First Presidency and Twelve Apostles Will Be Present for Rome Temple Dedication (Friday 8 March, 2019)The prophet will dedicate the Rome Italy Temple Sunday, March 10, 2019 with the rest of the First Presidency and all twelve apostles in attendance. This is believed to be the first time in Church history that all 15 leaders have gathered in one location outside the United States.
Interfaith Project Doubles Expectations: 2,000 Kits Donated to ‘Days for Girls’ (Wednesday 6 March, 2019)A Northern California Stake Center recently filled with 1,000 women of many faiths to present feminine hygiene kits to charity founder Celeste Mergens. Read how these kits will give education—and life—back to girls in third world countries.
Questions about the First Vision, Answered (Wednesday 6 March, 2019)Every great organization has an inspiring story of its origin—a stirring anecdote of where and how it all began. The First Vision is our inspiring story that informs everything we do and everything we are. Here are some questions about the First Vision with answers that are important to understand.
VIDEO: What did prophets think about Book of Mormon geography? (Tuesday 12 February, 2019)The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints recently released a Gospel Topics essay which reiterates the Church’s neutrality on the subject of Book of Mormon geography. While the Church itself does not have an official position on Book of Mormon geography, individual members and leaders of the Church have explored this matter in their own study and have offered various thoughts about where Book of Mormon events may have transpired.
Miracles Among the Stars: Spacecraft Overcomes Obstacles in Historic Exploration Beyond Pluto (Sunday 20 January, 2019)This mission demonstrates the dramatic coordinated use of inventions, space and earth based telescopes and other instruments, to say nothing of programming, networks, communications, and engineering applications across vast areas of space. All these things together in this example show the intelligence and power that mere humans can now use. We well should ask: “If our coordinated intelligent efforts can do so much, what then is God able to do?”
Illuminate Podcast: The Importance of Self-Care on the Path of Addiction Recovery (Sunday 20 January, 2019)This week, I interview Forest Benedict, LMFT, SATP about how men in recovery from pornography and sexual addiction can care for themselves in long-term recovery. He teaches that men with addictions are "masters of self-neglect" and don't have habits of taking good care of themselves. He is also in recovery himself and shares both his clinical and personal wisdom about how to build a strong self-care program.
Gladys Knight’s Thoughtful Response to Criticism About Upcoming Super Bowl Appearance (Sunday 20 January, 2019)"I am here today and on Sunday, Feb. 3, to give the anthem back its voice, to stand for that historic choice of words, the way it unites us when we hear it and to free it from the same prejudices and struggles I have fought long and hard for all my life..." Read the Latter-day Saint singer's full response to recent backlash over her decision to sing the National Anthem at the upcoming Super Bowl.
Tender Mercy: Be Happy Sings the Little Bird (Sunday 6 January, 2019)I have learned that I am not alone in recognizing that sometimes rare events involving nature, weather, family, friends, beloved animals, or even this little gray American Dipper who cheerfully sang his song of inspired support for me, are gifts of personalized tender mercies.
Illuminate Podcast: Improving “The Talk”, Addressing Sex without the Shame (Sunday 6 January, 2019)Our kids are tired of the same "porn is bad" talk and need better information from us on how to navigate the sex-saturated world that surrounds them. In this episode, we sit down with Dr. Dean Busby, director of the School of Family Life at Brigham Young University, who co-authored a book called "A Better Way to Teach Kids About Sex", which includes a chapter on how to have a better conversation about pornography.
A Happy New Year and a Healthy New You (Sunday 6 January, 2019)Ring in the New Year with an inspiring weight loss success story! Exactly one year after launching a weight loss program, meet three family members who collectively lost 130 pounds in 2018! Here’s how they did it and you can too!
8 Things I Do for my Health Daily (Wednesday 19 December, 2018)One close friend asked me recently, “Scot, you’ve been through these heart episodes, you have Type 2 diabetes, you have been challenged with neuropathy and other obstacles. What do you do to keep the pace that you keep? How do you do it all?” In this very brief article I will share with you eight things I always do for my health—My eight secrets (but I’m perfectly willing to share)—all in trying to answer the question of my close friend.
Our Top 5 Favorite Christmas Commercials That Will Warm Your Heart (Tuesday 11 December, 2018)The other night my husband and I curled up in bed and watched countless Christmas commercials with tears in our eyes. Along with the inspiring #LightTheWorld videos you can watch here, these videos uplift and motivate you to make the most of this Christmas season by serving someone—even if that someone is your own family member. We loved them so much, I wanted to share them with you.
Getting Into God’s Orbit: Who Can I Help Today? (Thursday 29 November, 2018)From time to time, God gives us Spiritual Assignments that bless other’s lives in a profound way. These are assignments that can cross cultural and religious lines. When we are open to promptings, and look for opportunities, He will place us in the orbit of someone we can bless.
Be Faithful Disciple-Scholars Even in Difficulty, Elder Holland Says at Maxwell Institute (Wednesday 14 November, 2018)Speaking to a capacity crowd in the Joseph Smith Building on the university’s Provo campus, Elder Holland explored the importance of scholarship and discipleship and how, in both, representing the Savior is most important.
Abraham’s Chiasm (Tuesday 13 November, 2018)It is noteworthy that the Book of Abraham begins and ends with a concept that wouldn’t be even noticeable except that the ending represents a purposeful contextual anomaly. The last chapters are the creation chapters ending with the creation of Eve followed by Adam naming the animals. The other creation stories in Genesis and Moses recount Adam naming the animals and then receiving his completing other half, Eve. Why does Abraham reverse the order of this little detail?
Your Spouse Cheated on You. Now What? (Tuesday 30 October, 2018)There may be nothing so devastating to a marriage as infidelity. The eradicated trust, the deep wounds of betrayal, and the feelings of shame create a perfect storm, wreaking havoc from which many never come back. If this is your current situation, know that through the pain there is hope.
The Surprise is that Mental Wellness Begins in the Gut (Monday 15 October, 2018)Like most of us, Rich Higbee never expected to cope with mental health challenges in his family, or that one daughter’s unhappiness could end up flooding his entire family. He has worked in the health and wellness industry for 24 years and has the gospel—enough to surely have a vibrant, mentally well family. Yet, we don’t always get what we expect, including Rich who didn’t know what an unexpected turn his life would take.
Learning to Call Out to the Lord at All Times (Not Just in Times of Great Need) (Monday 1 October, 2018)The verb "pray" appears twenty-two times in the Doctrine and Covenants. Nine of those times it is accompanied by the word "always." Never mind if it is midnight or an even more unreasonable hour; "Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep". If the Teacher is needed, call Him. If He is not needed, call Him.
Having the Faith to be Planted (Monday 20 August, 2018)Difficult. Overwhelming. Incapacitating. The pain is clearly visible beneath the transparently plain language, as when Sister Fuhriman says that “It seems impossible at times to give my heart to someone when there isn’t someone who has made the same commitment to me.” This unique talk stands in stark contrast to the ruthless optimism that pervades most of what we hear in General Conference.
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.
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 2020! (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?
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