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May 25, 2016

May 25, 2016

HISTORY® Partners With FamilySearch on Freedmen's Bureau Project (LDS Newsroom) (May 25, 2016)
FamilySearch International, sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is partnering with HISTORY® to give its Freedmen’s Bureau Project a final push.

New Harmony: The haunting saga of a Latter-day refugee (Deseret News - Utah) (May 25, 2016)
The Relief Society sisters of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have been asked to assist the world’s refugees. And, as my friend puts it, maybe we men should follow the women. Refugees are today's poor, wayfaring men and women of grief.

Inside the Story: 'James the Mormon' debut album tops the charts (KUTV - Utah) (May 25, 2016)
He says he's not a rapper or a music artist. Yet a Utah Valley man's hip-hop album topped the charts. "James the Mormon" came up with his name, not for his music, but after returning from his LDS mission to Washington State.

Idaho man sues university over hostility toward his Mormon faith (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (May 25, 2016)
An Idaho Falls man is suing Idaho State University, alleging that he was discriminated against because of his Mormon faith. The Post Register reports ( ) that Orin Duffin filed the lawsuit Friday. He says he was severely harassed while playing for the men's tennis team because of his membership in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

LDS Church silence on liquor licenses does not equal approval, DABC commissioner says (Fox 13 - Utah) (May 25, 2016)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is apparently weighing in on liquor license applications without explicitly weighing in. The Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission modified its prior stance that silence from a community location like a church or a school was essentially consent on a liquor license application for a business located nearby. It was brought up as the DABC commission considered wine/beer license requests for an Even Stevens restaurant in Logan and a La Frontera restaurant in St. George.

Rainbow Mormon Initiative (Huffington Post) (May 25, 2016)
On June 5, 2016, a group of Mormons who are allies of their LGBT+ brothers and sisters will be launching an initiative to show their support and love by wearing rainbow ribbons to church (or wearing them on Sundays if they do not attend) and posting photos of themselves online. The Rainbow Mormon Initiative also encourages those who wish to participate to knit or crochet scarves, hats, or blankets to donate to Ogden Youth Futures, a shelter for homeless LGBT+ teens in northern Utah.

May 24, 2016

Mormon Tabernacle Choir 2016 European Tour (Church News) (May 24, 2016)
For the first time in 18 years, the world-renowned Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square will perform in Europe. The 20-day tour to eight European cities is scheduled from Monday, June 27, through Saturday, July 16, 2016.

2016 Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra on Temple Square Pioneer Day Concert (Church News) (May 24, 2016)
The Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square will present their annual concert held in conjunction with community-wide Pioneer Day celebrations. The concert will be held on Friday and Saturday, July 22 and 23, at 8:00 p.m. in the Conference Center and will be conducted by Mack Wilberg, music director of the choir and Ryan Murphy, associate music director.

Video captures Angel Moroni atop LDS temple being struck by lightning (Fox 13 - Utah) (May 24, 2016)
A Bountiful woman filming Sunday’s storm on her phone caught the moment lightning struck the local temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Brittany Haslam said at first she didn’t realize what the lightning hit. It wasn’t until she went back and viewed the video in slow motion that she saw it hit the LDS temple.

LDS missionary who returned home early shares experience in Mormon Channel video (Deseret News - Utah) (May 24, 2016)
When young women and young men leave home to serve as full-time missionaries for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, they plan to serve for 18 months to two years. But a new video released by Mormon Channel on Monday as part of its "His Grace" series features one man’s experience of returning home earlier than expected.

May 23, 2016

Missionary Dress Guidelines Revised to Help Prevent Mosquito-Borne Diseases (LDS Newsroom) (May 23, 2016)
Dress guidelines for missionaries of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have been revised for men and women serving in areas around the world impacted by mosquito-borne viral diseases such as Dengue Fever, Chikungunya and Zika.

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf Visits Childhood Home in Czech Republic (LDS Newsroom Blog) (May 23, 2016)
President Dieter F. Uchtdorf of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ First Presidency and his wife, Harriet, recently visited President Uchtdorf’s childhood home in Ostrava, Czech Republic.

Elder Joaquin Esteban Costa: 'The Lord knows the details of your life' (LDS Church News) (May 23, 2016)
Elder Joaquin Esteban Costa has a message he wants to share with all people: Studying the Book of Mormon is the best way to know Jesus Christ. Two days after he was sustained as a General Authority Seventy during the Saturday afternoon session of the 186th Annual General Conference, Elder Costa and his wife, Renée Valera Costa, told the Church News of how the Book of Mormon became one of the most important elements in their lives.

'Will You Engage in the Wrestle?' Sheri Dew speaks at BYU-Idaho devotional (LDS Church News) (May 23, 2016)
“Questions are good. Questions are good if they are inspired questions, asked in faith, and asked of credible sources where the Spirit will direct and confirm the answer,” said Sheri Dew, CEO of the Deseret Book Company...

Lightning damages Angel Moroni statue atop Bountiful Temple (Deseret News - Utah) (May 23, 2016)
A lightning strike damaged the Angel Moroni statue atop the Bountiful Temple on Sunday afternoon. LDS Church spokesman Eric Hawkins confirmed that lightning struck the statue but did not the know the extent of the damage.

Religious freedom is good for business, Elder Christofferson says, so all have a stake in it (Deseret News - Utah) (May 23, 2016)
Everyone has a stake in protecting religious freedom because it contributes to better economic and business outcomes, Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the LDS Church said Friday. "Where religious freedom is respected and protected, society overall is more stable, safer and more prosperous," said Elder Christofferson, citing research data during a speech at the Utah Hispanic Chamber of Commerce's annual convention in Salt Lake City.

LDS church accuses Tribune for 'gotcha journalism' in reporting BYU rapes (KUTV - Utah) (May 23, 2016)
The LDS church held nothing back when it accused The Salt Lake Tribune of "gotcha journalism" in its recent reporting of sexual assaults on Brigham Young University's campus. In a blog posted Thursday, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints said recent Tribune stories made "extraordinary claims" and implied that there was a "rape culture" on BYU campus.

Editorial: How BYU should deal with its sexual assault scandal (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (May 23, 2016)
You are far from home. In a hotel room. Alone. You wake up in the middle of the night and realize the room is on fire. The flames and smoke block your way to the door. The window is locked. For, of course, your own protection. You could break the window to escape. You could use a chair in the room to smash the glass. But wait. Breaking other people's windows is against the law. So is smashing up their furniture. Best to just sit there and burn. Wouldn't want to break the rules.

Local Teachers honored by Latter-day Saints for excellence (Local News Only - Texas) (May 23, 2016)
Nearly three hundred North Texas teachers were honored by their students from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for excellence in teaching on the evenings of May 3-5, 2016. The teens from the Carroll, Grapevine-Colleyville, Hurst-Euless-Bedford, and Keller ISDs invited teachers who made a difference in their lives to join them for a dinner and a special program of song, video, and verse created by the youth just for them.

Mormon Mentions: Lindsey Stirling records with Celine Deon; Alex Boye song hits No. 2 on Billboard chart (Deseret News - Utah) (May 23, 2016)
Social media posts with a connection to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and its members last week highlighted LDS entertainers participating in a variety activities. These activities included a reality show and a concert in Croatia. In addition, social media accounts for LDS Church leaders featured inspiring stories and counsel.

Latter Day Saints says no (Newsday - Trinidad) (May 23, 2016)
THE unanimity of the IRO’s decision in support of child marriage has again come into question. This follows the revelation by Roman Catholic Archbishop Joseph Harris that neither he, nor his Church’s regular representative, was at a recent IRO board meeting at which the issue of child marriage was discussed and an alleged unanimous decision took place. He described child marriages as “legalised statutory rape”. Adding their voice to the controversial issue yesterday was the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. In a statement to the media yesterday, the Church also said it was not represented at the meeting. The Church affirmed that it did not convey its perspective on the issue to the Executive Committee of the Inter-Religious Organisation (IRO) of Trinidad and Tobago, before or after the meeting, and it is not in favour of child marriage.

May 20, 2016

LDS Church condemns sexual assault as BYU announces committee on campus response to student cases (Deseret News - Utah) (May 20, 2016)
LDS leaders condemned all sexual assault, expressing a zero tolerance standard for assault at Brigham Young University and in the church, and called for respect and sensitivity for survivors in a statement issued Thursday evening.

BYU launches website to gather suggestions for changing how it handles sex assault reports (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (May 20, 2016)
Brigham Young University has launched a website to receive comments on the school's handling of sexual-assault reports. The website,, is part of a study of campus responses to sex crime, announced last month after students alleged that they were disciplined under the school's Honor Code as a result of reporting sexual assaults against them. The website includes comment fields for users to offer their suggestions and describe their personal experiences, as well as check boxes to identify their connection to the school, such as student, alumni or community member.

BYU students who reported sex assaults say they faced presumption of guilt (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (May 20, 2016)
E.M. recalls being shaken by her freshman-year boyfriend's patchy affection for her — his sudden swings from adoration to contempt.

Family History Moment: Each Is a “Real Person” (Church News) (May 20, 2016)
Since the FamilySearch indexing program was introduced in 2006, Trish Homer has indexed more than a million names. She has spent the past 25 years in a wheelchair suffering from Muscular Dystrophy.

Mormonism in the News: Getting It Right | May 19, 2016 (LDS Newsroom Blog) (May 20, 2016)
For several weeks, the Salt Lake Tribune has aggressively reported on the incidence of alleged sexual assaults at Brigham Young University. In one report on May 6, 2016, the newspaper not only implied that a “rape culture” exists at BYU but that the doctrines of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints materially contributed to that culture. Despite making such extraordinary claims, Tribune reporters did not approach the Church for comment. Following its publication, a Public Affairs representative from the Church contacted the newspaper and asked why the Church had not been given an opportunity to comment on such a major story. One of the two writers acknowledged the “lapse in judgment,” and said she felt that the inclusion of a reference to the Church’s leadership handbook was sufficient. Note to Tribune editors: it wasn’t.

Reservations Required for Mormon Temple Open House (Philly Curbed - Pennsylvania) (May 20, 2016)
Beginning next Monday, reservations will open to snag a ticket to the Philadelphia Mormon Temple Open House in August and September. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced earlier this week that you will need to reserve a free ticket online in order to tour the Philadelphia Pennsylvania Temple, which will be open from Monday to Saturday beginning August 10 through September 9.

May 19, 2016

VIDEO: Reaching Out to Refugees—Be a Sincere Friend (May 19, 2016)
Since the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints issued a letter in March 2016 encouraging Mormon women to help refugees, LDS Charities (the Church's humanitarian arm) has published video vignettes for its "Give Back" series that show how some members are already reaching out to refugees.

Bishop Caussé Shares 5 “Time” Principles with BYU–Idaho Students (Church News) (May 19, 2016)
The success of people’s mortal experience depends in large part on how they use their time, said Bishop Gérald Caussé, Presiding Bishop of the Church, during a Brigham Young University–Idaho campus devotional held in the BYU–Idaho Center on May 10.

Updated LDS missionary dress and grooming guidelines allow for sunglasses (Deseret News - Utah) (May 19, 2016)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has made updates to its dress and grooming guidelines for missionaries. The updates include permission for missionaries to wear “simple and conservative sunglasses” and approved wide-brimmed hats while proselyting. These changes have been made to “provide protection from the sun,” according to

College golf: BYU to start NCAA championships early to avoid Sunday play (Associated Press) (May 19, 2016)
The BYU women's golf team has been allowed to get an early start in the NCAA championships this week because of the school's longstanding stance against participating in athletic events on Sundays. BYU will play on Thursday through Saturday at the Eugene County Club in Oregon. The other 23 teams vying to advance to the round of eight will begin play in Eugene on Friday and wrap up Sunday. The top eight teams move on to match play next week.

Utahn on Trump’s list of his top Supreme Court picks (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (May 19, 2016)
Presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump says that if he were in the White House, one of the few people he would consider naming to the Supreme Court is one of Utah's high court members: Associate Chief Justice Thomas Lee. Lee, the brother of Utah Sen. Mike Lee and son of the late Rex Lee, who was President Ronald Reagan's solicitor general, is one of 11 people Trump named Wednesday as potential nominees he would name to the U.S. Supreme Court. Lee has served on the Utah Supreme Court for six years.

May 18, 2016

President Uchtdorf creates first stake in Czech Republic (LDS Church News) (May 18, 2016)
President Dieter F. Uchtdorf created the Prague Czech Republic Stake — the first stake in the country — on Sunday, May 15.

Another possible benefit of going to church: A 33 percent chance of living longer (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (May 18, 2016)
Religious services aren't just good for your soul — they might be good for your health. A new study, released Monday in a journal published by the American Medical Association, says that those who attend church services more often actually have a better chance of staying alive in the long run. Over a 20-year span, the study surveyed a group of more than 76,000 female nurses, most of whom were Catholic and Protestant. At the end of 20 years, more than 13,000 of them had died. The women who went to religious services more than once a week, it turned out, were 33 percent less likely to be in that group who died, compared to those who never attended services.

LDS teen, future U. gymnast prepares for Rio Olympic trials (Deseret News - Utah) (May 18, 2016)
After winning medals at two international gymnastic meets in March, 19-year-old Mormon gymnast Mykayla Skinner has her eye on the 2016 Olympics in Brazil.

Mormon church weighs in on Obama’s transgender guidance, says ‘people of goodwill’ can reach solution (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (May 18, 2016)
The Utah-based LDS Church isn't coming out directly in support of — or against — the Obama administration's directive that transgender students be allowed to use facilities that match their gender identity. Spokesman Eric Hawkins said Tuesday in a statement that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is instead calling on public officials to create rules and laws that balance safety, privacy and dignity for all.

Newly released records: Deputy wanted BYU Honor Code Office to investigate alleged rape victim (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (May 18, 2016)
Utah County sheriff's Deputy Edwin Randolph didn't believe Madi Barney. Weeks after the Brigham Young University student reported she was sexually assaulted, Randolph was alerting university staff to the rape case — and to his own skepticism.

Judge denies LDS leader’s request to drop sexual abuse charges (Daily Nonpareil - Iowa) (May 18, 2016)
An Oakland man will stand trial on sexual abuse charges after his motion to dismiss charges was denied Monday. James Raborn, 26, has been charged with two felony counts of sexual exploitation...

May 17, 2016

Sister Stephens Outlines Three Markers That Lead to Safety (Church News) (May 17, 2016)
“Through the Father’s plan, the covenant path, and the life, example, and Atonement of Jesus Christ, we will find our way back home to our heavenly home,” said Sister Carole M. Stephens...

Church Invites Members to Share How They Honor #HisDay (Church News) (May 17, 2016)
In an effort to “remind the world what the Lord’s day is all about,” a new invitation from the Church encourages members of all ages and living around the world to share their photos and thoughts as they honor the Sabbath day—#HisDay.

BYU exhibition celebrates centuries of Christ-themed art (LDS Church News) (May 17, 2016)
“O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together.” — Psalm 34:3 For the Christian artist, the psalmist’s charge to “magnify the Lord” is naturally achieved through paint, brush, chisel or sculpting tool. The life, teachings and gospel of Jesus Christ have been taught through paintings and sculptures for centuries.

May 16, 2016

President Uchtdorf visits Brussels, calls members 'incredible' (LDS Church News) (May 16, 2016)
During a time when refugees are pouring into Europe and despite devastating terrorist attacks in their countries earlier this year, Latter-day Saints in Belgium and France are “joyful and looking forward,” said President Dieter F. Uchtdorf after visiting the countries May 10-12.

BYU history professor keynotes Golden Spike commemoration (LDS Church News) (May 16, 2016)
On the 147th anniversary of the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad on May 10, 1869, the contribution of and benefits to the enterprise by the Mormons then living in the Utah Territory “is a subject that merits attention,” a Brigham Young University professor of Church history declared.

Latest Joseph Smith Papers release covers Zion's Camp, other events of 1834-35 (LDS Church News) (May 16, 2016)
Redeeming their lands in Zion after the Latter-day Saints had been driven from Jackson County, Missouri, in late 1833 comprises much of the focus of the 93 documents published in the latest release of the Joseph Smith Papers project.

Ex-US Sen. Bob Bennett laid to rest in Salt Lake City (Boston Herald - Utah) (May 16, 2016)
Hundreds of mourners gathered Saturday to remember Bob Bennett as a loving husband and father who did not let his career as a senator define him. The former Republican senator died earlier this month at his home in Arlington, Virginia, from complications of pancreatic cancer and a recent stroke. He was 82.

Jon Huntsman Sr. ‘excited for the second coming of The Salt Lake Tribune’ (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (May 16, 2016)
If Paul Huntsman succeeds in buying The Salt Lake Tribune, it will fulfill what at times has seemed an all-but-unattainable goal to his billionaire father. "This has been amazing," 78-year-old Jon Huntsman Sr. said of the pending Tribune purchase. "In my opinion, it's absolutely a miracle that a situation like this can be pulled off."

The First Vision (KUER) (May 16, 2016)
Joseph Smith claimed that God and Jesus appeared to him in 1820 to tell him all churches were wrong, which led him to found the Mormon faith. Late LDS President Gordon B. Hinckley once said the Church’s “whole strength rests on the validity of that vision.” Smith told multiple versions over the years though, and critics say discrepancies are proof he made it all up. Monday, we’re talking about the “First Vision,” the role it’s played in Church history and what it reveals about Mormonism today.

Dick Harmon: Ty Detmer, the son, opens up one more family chapter taking BYU coaching gig (Deseret News - Utah) (May 16, 2016)
It is a given Ty Detmer’s success as a college offensive coordinator will depend on many things, not the least being BYU’s 2016 schedule, injuries, talent and sheer luck, according to his father, legendary Texas high school coach Sonny Detmer. But the father has no doubt. He believes Ty, who has been around football and coaching all his life, will step in and make it work and love doing it. “If it’s coaching, it’s coaching,” said Sonny.

Statistics show BYU's Honor Code protects students, but can learning from others make it better? (Deseret News - Utah) (May 16, 2016)
Brigham Young University has long taken pride in its Honor Code. Created by students in 1949, it has made BYU one of the most distinctive college campuses in America, a place where premarital sex is proscribed, alcohol is prohibited both on and off campus, and even dress and grooming is regulated: shorts must reach the knee and men can’t wear their hair long.

David Archuleta, Paul Cardall perform at humanitarian concert in Slovenia (Deseret News - Utah) (May 16, 2016)
Musical artists singer David Archuleta and pianist Paul Cardall performed Friday, May 13, in the Slovenian Opera Theatre at the invitation of the Slovenian Heart Foundation for the group's sold-out 25th anniversary charity concert celebration.

LDS Church History Museum hosts ‘Freetown’ filmmakers May 19 (Deseret News - Utah) (May 16, 2016)
“Freetown” director Garrett Batty and screenwriter Melissa Leilani Larson will speak on “Inspirational Drama: Salvation in Microcosm” at the LDS Church History Museum on Thursday, May 19, at 7 p.m.

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