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January 30, 2015

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January 30, 2015

Construction of Rome Italy Temple to Resume at Normal Pace (LDS Newsroom) (January 30, 2015)
In recent months, progress on the Rome Italy Temple slowed due to contractor difficulties not related to this project. Those challenges have been addressed, and work will soon resume at a normal pace....

BYU-Idaho devotional: 'Accomplishing the impossible' (LDS Church News) (January 30, 2015)
“The Lord uses the unlikely to accomplish the impossible,” Elder Russell M. Nelson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles told students at Brigham Young University-Idaho during a campus devotional on Jan. 27.

Church Announces Open House Dates for Indianapolis Indiana Temple (Church News) (January 30, 2015)
The First Presidency has recently announced the open house and dedication dates for the Indianapolis Indiana Temple. The temple open house will be available to the public for tours beginning Friday, July 17, 2015, and will run until Saturday, August 8, 2015. The open house will be closed Sundays. A cultural celebration will be held Saturday, August 22.

Balancing LGBT, religious rights won’t be easy, Mormon leaders concede (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (January 30, 2015)
In the tug of war between religious freedom and LGBT rights, neither side will get everything it wants, two Mormon apostles said Thursday. "Neither right is an absolute," explained Dallin H. Oaks, a member of the LDS Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and a former Utah Supreme Court justice. "Each has exceptions." But neither Oaks nor fellow Mormon apostle D. Todd Christofferson would offer any guidance on how the Utah Legislature should balance the two sometimes-conflicting notions or where to draw the lines defining the exceptions to each interest. Instead, Oaks said, their mission was to put forward principles and then "encourage the two extremes to talk to each other."

Advocates Examine Mormon Church's Stance On LGBT Rights (NPR) (January 30, 2015)
Advocates for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people celebrated when the church announced support for anti-discrimination laws. But now they are taking a closer look at the statements.

Mormon LGBT Announcement Met With Cheers, Skepticism (NPR) (January 30, 2015)
Robert Siegel talks to Mormon leader Elder Dallin Oaks about the press conference this week where the church announced it would support LGBT anti-discrimination legislation in return for laws that protect religious freedom.

LDS Church asking Mormons for input on temple garments (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (January 30, 2015)
In October, the LDS Church added a video and photos to an essay about its temple clothing — including two-piece underwear known as "garments" — as a way to deflect misinformation on social media and in the popular press. Now The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is asking members for feedback about the fit, fabric, size and style of garments. And many Mormon feminists are cheering — and eagerly sharing their opinions.

LDS missionary preparation begins earlier than ever (LDS Church News) (January 30, 2015)
There was a time, not long ago, when prospective missionaries could bank some post-high school “life experiences” before reporting to the mission field. Most young men had at least six months or so after graduation before they celebrated their 19th birthday. During that time, many future missionaries began focusing on their gospel studies while attending college or maybe working a full-time job.

Romney to tell supporters his 2016 plans Friday (CNN) (January 30, 2015)
Former Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney has made a decision on whether to go forward with a third presidential bid and will tell to supporters which way he is going in a Friday morning call, a source familiar with Romney's plans tells CNN. Another Romney source said "the call is an 'update' call with finance, political, policy and grassroots leadership around the country." While Romney will not officially announce his plans for 2016, he will clarify whether he is moving towards a run or pulling back from the prospect.

Fox News Poll: Romney remains top of GOP field, Clinton leads Democrats (Fox News) (January 30, 2015)
Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton remain the front-runners for their respective party’s presidential nominations. In addition, Romney performs best against Clinton among the Republicans tested in hypothetical head-to-head matchups, coming out dead even. That’s according to the latest Fox News poll, released Thursday.

January 29, 2015

Italy’s Mormons fast, pray as work on Rome temple stalls (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (January 29, 2015)
In October 2008, Mormon officials announced with great enthusiasm that a temple would be built in Rome and, two years later, LDS President Thomas S. Monson participated in the groundbreaking for the sacred structure, with an estimated completion date in the second half of 2014.

Mormon Church big enough to seat 1000 people with an 18m high steeple proposed for Logan suburb (Courier Mail - Australia) (January 29, 2015)
A Mormon church capable of seating up to 1000 people planned for Cornubia has some local residents and their councillor up in arms.

Gay rights advocates say Mormon Church stance symbolic (Standard-Examiner - Utah) (January 29, 2015)
Mormon leaders sought Tuesday to put their conservative church on middle ground in a major culture war issue — saying for the first time that they support some legal anti-discrimination protections for LGBT people, so long as the religious freedom of those who oppose gay equality is taken into account.

Mormons on LGBT rights called naive, unhelpful (Baptist Press) (January 29, 2015)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will support civil rights for lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people if religious freedom protections also are ensured, its leaders announced Tuesday (Jan. 27). Southern Baptist leaders, however, said the Mormons' approach to the conflict between sexual rights and religious liberty is naive and unhelpful, as well as unacceptable to proponents of LGBT rights.

Mormons Building Bridges and Sutherland Institute react to LDS church announcement (Cache Valley Daily - Utah) (January 29, 2015)
During a rare news conference Tuesday, leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints called for legislation across the country that provides religious freedom as well as protecting gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. Apostle Dallin H. Oakes said state legislatures across the country are being asked to strengthen laws against LGBT discrimination relating to such issues as housing and employment.

Membership growth spurs LDS expansion (Glendale Star - Arizona) (January 29, 2015)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is poised for expansion in Glendale and throughout the West Valley as construction has started on a retail service center and a warehouse and office complex. The two buildings, located near West Bell Road and North 67th Avenue and close to the Kmart and Chuck E. Cheese’s, will span nearly 70,000 square feet and cost almost $10 million, according to building permits the city issued in December.

'Studio C' cast talks to LDS teens about humor — seriously (Deseret News - Utah) (January 29, 2015)
When Whitney Call, Mallory Everton, Jason Gray and Matt Meese are trying to be funny, they’re very funny. More and more people are discovering this fact as the popularity of their BYUtv sketch comedy show, “Studio C,” continues to grow, especially among young viewers looking for the kind of laughter they can share with friends and parents alike.

Returned sister missionary, hundreds of YSAs encourage thousands to share testimony of Book of Mormon online (Deseret News - Utah) (January 29, 2015)
Several LDS missionaries in Jacksonville, Florida, and hundreds of young single adults in Provo are encouraging members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints around the world to use selfies for a spiritual purpose this week.

Super Bowl quarterback Tom Brady relies on LDS trainer for guidance in all aspects of life (Deseret News - Utah) (January 29, 2015)
A feature in The New York Times on Monday shared a unique insight into the life of Tom Brady, a quarterback for the New England Patriots, who will play in Sunday’s Super Bowl. Specifically, the article highlighted his friendship with his “body coach” Alex Guerrero, who is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The article states that Guerrero's job description actually “significantly understates his exhaustive reach into Brady’s life.”

If judges can't join the Boy Scouts, what about the Mormon Church? (Los Angeles Times - California) (January 29, 2015)
California's Supreme Court unanimously decreed that state judges will no longer be allowed to affiliate with the Boy Scouts of America because of the organization's discrimination against gay and lesbian adults in leadership roles.

Fierce debate surrounds John Dehlin's upcoming LDS Church disciplinary hearing (HJ News - Utah) (January 29, 2015)
The pending LDS Church disciplinary hearing for John Dehlin, a Utah State University psychology doctoral student charged with apostasy for his views on LGBT issues and the Ordain Women movement, has sparked a nationwide online debate.

Sundance filmmaker premiers new film on radical Mormon offshoot (Malay Mail - Malaysia) (January 29, 2015)
The US director of an award-winning film about sex abuse by Catholic priests has unveiled a new documentary, focusing on child sexual assault in a radical offshoot of the Mormon Church. Amy Berg, whose “Deliver Us from Evil” (2006) was nominated for an Oscar, premiered her latest film “Prophet’s Prey” at the Sundance Film Festival this week.

January 28, 2015

Mormon Leaders Call for Laws That Protect Religious Freedom (LDS Newsroom) (January 28, 2015)
Leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints called Tuesday for legislation across the United States that protects vital religious freedoms.

LDS leaders reemphasize protection of religious freedoms, support for LGBT nondiscrimination laws (Deseret News - Utah) (January 28, 2015)
Senior LDS leaders reiterated Tuesday the church’s longstanding support for laws that ensure fair access to housing and employment for LGBT people while safeguarding religious freedom. Three apostles and one of the faith's women's leaders clearly outlined the position at a landmark news conference, spelling out concerns about what they see as an erosion of religious liberties and calling for fairness for all people.

We all can be more civil on LGBT issues, Mormon leader says (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (January 28, 2015)
In the past few years, Mormonism has toned down its language about homosexuality from a debate about sin and causality to embracing notions of empathy and understanding. Now the LDS Church is emphasizing a more civil dialogue with activists and better outreach to gay members — and it did so with a high-profile news conference, featuring three Mormon apostles and a top female leader.

Mormon Church tries to balance gay rights protections, religious freedom (Los Angeles Times - California) (January 28, 2015)
Seven years after the Mormon Church led followers on a campaign to outlaw gay marriage in California, church leaders on Tuesday announced their support for job, housing and public accommodation protections for gays and lesbians everywhere.

Mormon Leaders Propose New Stance on LGBT Rights (Wall Street Journal) (January 28, 2015)
Leaders of the Mormon Church are advocating a new approach in the struggle over gay rights and religious freedom claims, saying the church will support legal protections for both religious believers and gay people. In a rare news conference Tuesday at the headquarters of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Salt Lake City, church leaders said it would back fair access to housing and employment for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. But the church also urged lawmakers to support “legislation that protects vital religious freedoms” for individuals and faith groups.

Reaction to LDS Church announcement on LGBT, religious protections (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (January 28, 2015)
"The statement made by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints today is an additional and important step to help us find common ground on these important issues. It will be helpful in our effort to resolve these difficult and emotional matters. I firmly believe that, in order to protect the personally held values of people on all sides, any advancement of nondiscrimination legislation should be coupled with legislation to safeguard protections to religious freedom. I am confident that, as elected officials, we can work together with religious, business and civic leaders as well as the LGBT community to craft policies that treat all people with dignity and respect."

Mormon Church Wants Freedom to Discriminate (New York Times) (January 28, 2015)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints held a rare news conference in Salt Lake City today that is drawing headlines about a supposedly new, accommodating stand on gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender rights. The Mormon church is now willing, news accounts says, to support anti-discrimination legislation in the realms of housing and employment. In return, all the Mormons want are laws that “protect religious freedom.”

New Wave of Mormon Missionaries Is Young, Energetic and Female (ABC News) (January 28, 2015)
The mission has traditionally been a rite of passage for young Mormon men, often recognizable by their trademark white button-down shirts and dark suits, as they roam neighborhoods across the world looking for converts. Now their female counterparts are flocking to missions in record numbers after a subtle, yet critical, change in church policy lowered the age minimum from 21 to 19 for the women, known as sisters.

BYU-Idaho's Board of Trustees Announces New President (LDS Newsroom) (January 28, 2015)
Clark G. Gilbert, currently the CEO of Deseret News and Deseret Digital Media and an executive vice president of Deseret Management Corporation, will become the next president of BYU-Idaho. Elder Russell M. Nelson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and chair of the Executive Committee of the Board made the announcement today at BYU-Idaho’s weekly devotional. Clark Gilbert replaces President Kim B. Clark, who has served the global influence of BYU-Idaho since 2005.

Deseret News CEO Clark Gilbert named BYU-Idaho president (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (January 28, 2015)
Deseret News CEO Clark Gilbert, who oversaw a transformation of the newspaper as he championed faith-based coverage and a shift toward digital-centric news, has been named president of Brigham Young University-Idaho. Gilbert is set to replace current President Kim Clark, who has led the Rexburg school since 2005. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced the appointment in a Tuesday statement on the church website. Apostle Russell M. Nelson also discussed the change Tuesday at BYU-Idaho's weekly devotional, the statement read. Neither made clear what Clark will do upon leaving BYU-Idaho.

Full-Purpose Missionaries Needed to Retain Converts (Church News) (January 28, 2015)
This is the greatest day there has ever been to be engaged in missionary work, said Elder David F. Evans as he spoke to couples on the subject of “being full-purpose missionaries.”

Romney, ahead of 2016 run, now calls Utah home, talks openly about Mormon influence (Washington Post) (January 28, 2015)
After losing two straight presidential races, Mitt Romney packed up his home in Massachusetts and journeyed west to Utah, building a mansion here in the foothills of the Wasatch Range that has served as his sanctuary from defeat. Here in the Salt Lake Valley, first settled by his Mormon ancestors, residents look past Romney’s electoral shortcomings and revere him for rescuing the 2002 Winter Olympics. Romney won his highest 2012 vote margin in Utah — 73 percent to President Obama’s 25 percent. This is also where Romney has been pondering a potential third campaign, calling out to friends and past supporters and praying with his wife, Ann.

January 27, 2015

LDS apostle Elder David A. Bednar offers prayer over Utah Senate (LDS Church News) (January 27, 2015)
Opening day of the 2015 Utah Legislature on Monday commenced with prayers from two prominent members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Practicing Pure Religion Brings Happiness, Seventy Tells Students (Church News) (January 27, 2015)
In order to be happy, feel the Holy Ghost, and grow closer to the Savior, individuals must practice pure religion, Elder Don R. Clarke of the Seventy said during a BYU campus devotional on January 13. Thousands of students listened to the General Authority as he spoke in the Marriott Center on the BYU campus.

The Spirit's role in conversion (LDS Church News) (January 27, 2015)
Conversion could be thought of as a process along a continuum that includes experiencing the Spirit of Christ, feeling the confirming power of the Holy Ghost, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, being endowed with spiritual gifts and feeling the assurance expressed in the Savior’s words “Well done thou good and faithful servant,” Elder Per G. Malm said.

Role of the Book of Mormon in conversion (LDS Church News) (January 27, 2015)
Ascertaining the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon is a revelatory and spiritual experience, Elder Brent H. Nielson of the Seventy told couples attending the 2015 Seminar for New MTC Presidents and Visitors’ Center Directors Jan. 14 as he spoke to them about the role of the Book of Mormon in conversion.

Repentance helps missionaries to prosper (LDS Church News) (January 27, 2015)
For missionaries to teach repentance, they must know of the principle themselves, Elder Don R. Clarke of the Seventy said to couples attending the 2015 Seminar for New MTC Presidents and Visitors’ Center Directors on Jan. 14.

New visitors' center director (LDS Church News) (January 27, 2015)
David B. Ostler and Rachelle Ostler, six children, Falls Church Ward, McLean Virginia Stake: Hill Cumorah Visitors’ Center, succeeding Elder Stephen H. Stewart and Sister Anne L. Stewart. Elder Ostler previously presided over the Sierra Leone Freetown Mission and is a former counselor in a mission presidency, stake president, counselor in a stake presidency, stake Young Men president, bishop and missionary in the Japan Fukuoka Mission. Retired executive vice president, OptumInsight. Born in Salt Lake City to Oliver Don and Barbara Ruth Ostler.

BYU exhibit celebrates Christ's 'Words and Deeds' (LDS Church News) (January 27, 2015)
Today’s students of the gospel enjoy an almost endless cache of learning resources. To wit: you can study the Book of Mormon on a smartphone as you cross-reference general conference talks on a tablet while listening to a live radio broadcast of the Tabernacle Choir.

Mitt Romney's Mormon Faith Driving Him to Consider 3rd Try at Presidency; Will Decide in '2 Weeks' (Christian Post) (January 27, 2015)
Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney will reportedly decide on a 2016 presidential bid in coming weeks and a close ally says the idea of a third run is being driven by his Mormon faith. Despite having lost the 2008 Republican nomination to Arizona Senator John McCain and the 2012 presidential election to Barack Obama, Romney remains hopeful about his future in politics. Veteran journalist Larry King confirmed over the weekend that the former Mormon pastor is seriously considering another bid at the presidency.

NFL's digital chief: 'Football is the only sure bet' (Fortune) (January 27, 2015)
One of the folks behind the curtain is Brian Rolapp, who is in charge of NFL Media and, by extension, properties like NFL Network, NFL.com, the RedZone channel, Thursday Night Football, and the league’s many digital offerings. A devout Mormon and a graduate of Brigham Young University and Harvard Business School, Rolapp, 42, grew up outside Washington, D.C. He joined the NFL in 2003, after three years at NBCUniversal.

'In Football We Trust' puts a religious twist on a familiar story (Deseret News - Utah) (January 27, 2015)
“In Football We Trust” is not the first film to paint the dream of professional sports as an all-or-nothing venture, but it may be the first to suggest that religion offers an alternative path to happiness.

From an ex-gay pastor to Bible scams and Scientology defectors — Sundance goes to church (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (January 27, 2015)
Jesus in an epic battle with the devil, who coincidentally looks like the Christian Savior's identical twin. A former gay activist turned pastor who condemns his earlier self. A biblical archaeologist caught up in a comedic scam for lost artifacts. The Church of Scientology as seen by those who have left it.

January 26, 2015

'His paths are righteous' — Elder Cook speaks to young adults in Logan area (Deseret News - Utah) (January 26, 2015)
Following the path of righteousness is a choice all must make for themselves, taught Elder Quentin L. Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints during a devotional for young adults on Sunday night in Utah State University’s Spectrum auditorium.

Leaders Say Primary Theme Builds Children’s Testimony of Christ (Church News) (January 26, 2015)
This year the Primary general presidency wants Latter-day Saint children worldwide to come to know that Jesus Christ lives. The theme of the 2015 Outline for Sharing Time—“I Know My Savior Lives”—is based on the scripture “For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth” (Job 19:25).

Romney’s Consideration of Candidacy Is Closely Tied to His Faith, Allies Say (New York Times) (January 26, 2015)
A prominent Republican delivered a direct request to Mitt Romney not long ago: He should make a third run for the presidency, not for vanity or redemption, but to answer a higher calling from his faith. Believing that Mr. Romney, a former Mormon pastor, would be most receptive on these grounds, the Republican made the case that Mr. Romney had a duty to serve, and said Mr. Romney seemed to take his appeal under consideration.

Matheson honored at Democratic fundraiser (KSL - Utah) (January 26, 2015)
Former Congressman Jim Matheson, who served for seven terms in a "sea of Republicans," received a lifetime achievement award from the state Democratic party, Saturday.

Former Utah speaker remembered as compassionate and tough (Signpost - Utah) (January 26, 2015)
Elder D. Todd Christofferson, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, offered comfort from the faith that Lockhart’s family would see her again. He quoted Ralph Waldo Emerson, “It’s not the length of a life that matters, it’s the depth.” He said Lockhart’s life had plenty of depth.

Catholic Archbishop Delivers Message on Religious Freedom at Brigham Young University (LDS Newsroom) (January 26, 2015)
Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia shared a message on the importance of preserving religious freedom to students, faculty and administrators at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, on Friday, January 23, 2015. The university is owned and operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

About Utah: Utah Valley University fills a niche like no other (Deseret News - Utah) (January 26, 2015)
Last summer, after finishing his fifth year as president of Utah Valley University, Matthew Holland joined several of his students for a hike to the summit of Mount Timpanogos. It was a clear day and the view of Utah Valley from the top was, as expected, terrific. The best part was when everyone’s gaze shifted across the valley to the UVU campus. Even from up there, it looked big and impressive.

Reid L. Neilson Named Assistant Church Historian and Recorder (LDS Newsroom) (January 26, 2015)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints today appointed Reid L. Neilson as a new assistant Church historian and recorder. He will serve together with current assistant Church historian and recorder Richard E. Turley Jr. He is the latest in a long line of assistant historians, including Orson F. Whitney, Brigham H. Roberts, Junius F. Wells and Andrew Jenson.

New mission presidents (LDS Church News) (January 26, 2015)
Eight mission presidents and their wives have been called by the First Presidency. They will begin their service in July.

Monroe Latter-day Saints introduce new leaders (News Star - Louisiana) (January 26, 2015)
The Monroe Stake of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has introduced its new leaders. The new Stake President is John Heim of West Monroe assisted by First Counselor Jeremy Crook of Ruston and Second Counselor Walker Ross of Monroe.

Op-ed: Why is ‘Book of Mormon’ play tolerated and even praised? (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (January 26, 2015)
Everybody knows that "The Book of Mormon" musical pokes fun at Mormonism. That's the whole premise, as goody-two-shoes Elder Price and mediocre sidekick Elder Cunningham are sent to Uganda to complete a two-year mission for the Mormon church. Initially, the humor is witty and rather innocent, with dancing Starbucks cups depicted in "Mormon hell" and gags about over-zealous door-to-door missionaries. Yet, by act two, the humor abandons all inhibitions and progresses to the epitome of offensiveness: The Book of Mormon is literally shoved up a missionary's rectum.

January 23, 2015

LDS mission president's wife dies (Deseret News - Utah) (January 23, 2015)
The wife of the president of the LDS Church's Utah Salt Lake City Mission died unexpectedly Wednesday after she collapsed at the mission home.

LDS.org Appearance, Menus to Evolve Over Time (Church News) (January 23, 2015)
LDS.org is getting a new look in a release scheduled for early February, the first in a series of improvements meant to make the official Church website more personalized and easy to use.

LDS Church celebrates 50 years in Bolivia (LDS Church News) (January 23, 2015)
The Church recently celebrated its golden anniversary in Bolivia. On Nov. 22, 1964, 19 people gathered in the interior city of Cochabamba for the nation’s first official Church meeting. Missionaries arrived two days later.

Bible Videos DVD Special Price Extended (Church News) (January 23, 2015)
In December, the Church released a DVD of 50 videos about the Savior’s life, titled The Life of Jesus Christ Bible Videos: The Gospels on DVD, with a special price of only $5 until the end of the year. Because of overwhelming demand, the DVD was out of stock most of the month of December. But it is back in stock now, and the introductory price of $5 has been extended until the end of January, after which the price will go up to $10.

Faith, friends and football: Stanford linebacker shares LDS conversion story (Deseret News - Utah) (January 23, 2015)
Lane Veach had always been surrounded by Mormons. Growing up in Chandler, Arizona, many of his friends, including his girlfriend, were members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Sometimes he found himself at Eagle Scout service projects, family home evenings or LDS youth activities.

Mormon Church funding model inspires Digital Harbor Foundation 3-D printing program (Baltimore Business Journal - Maryland) (January 23, 2015)
A 3-D printer could be a great investment for a school, but when budget season forces administrators to choose between a $600 printer and $600 worth of needed school supplies, the printer gets cut. Digital Harbor Foundation Executive Director Andrew Coy thinks there's a way for schools to have it all — by making 3-D printers pay for themselves.

Defending the Faith: A tribute to heroes in the kingdom (Deseret News - Utah) (January 23, 2015)
I’ve been reflecting lately on people who’ve significantly, directly and personally impacted my life as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. There are many of them, ranging from local teachers to general LDS Church leaders.

Themes hint at reengineered Mitt Romney (Boston Globe - Massachusetts) (January 23, 2015)
The politician on the stage talked about the “human tragedy” of middle-class people struggling to make ends meet. He lamented income inequality, saying “People want to see rising wages — and they deserve them. They’re working hard.” Then, winding up a 15-minute speech to loud applause, he vowed, “We’re going to . . . finally end the scourge of poverty in this great land!”

Romney's Mormonism brings money (Lewiston Tribune - Idaho) (January 23, 2015)
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney is assessing his prospects for another run at the presidency. His name identification alone from being the GOP presidential candidate in 2012 would, in normal times, give him a leg up and make him the leading contender.

12-year-old who fell through ice into pool in Magna Tuesday has died (Fox 13 - Utah) (January 23, 2015)
A 12-year-old boy who was taken to a hospital in critical condition after he fell through ice and into an outdoor community pool in Magna Tuesday evening has died, officials announced Thursday evening. According to information from the Unified Police Department, the child died Thursday. Family members as well as the family’s LDS Church Bishop told FOX 13 News that a fundraising account to help the family with burial costs has been established under the boy’s name, Jacques Bushman, at Mountain America Credit Union. Donations can be made at any branch or by calling Mountain America at 800-748-4302.

Disciplinary council delayed for ‘Mormon Stories’ podcaster John Dehlin (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (January 23, 2015)
John Dehlin, founder of the popular "Mormon Stories" podcast, said Thursday that his disciplinary council for apostasy, originally scheduled for Sunday, has been postponed. Dehlin spoke on Trib Talk, The Salt Lake Tribune's online video chat. A spokesman for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints said that Dehlin's ecclesiastical leader, Bryan King, a stake president in North Logan, is "attending to family duties" in the wake of his father's death Wednesday.

Baring Man Arrested For Damaging LDS Temple Property In Nauvoo, Illinois (Nemonews.net - Missouri) (January 23, 2015)
According to court documents and a press release from the Nauvoo Police Department, Frank Junior Utter, 60, of Baring, formerly of Edina, was arrested for allegedly driving a vehicle through a wrought iron fence surrounding the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Temple in Nauvoo, IL, early Tuesday morning, January 20, 2015. Utter allegedly drove the vehicle through two locked gates and damaged a nativity scene driving over the figures.

January 22, 2015

LDS Church announces creation of Wyoming Mormon Trail Mission (LDS Church News) (January 22, 2015)
A new mission has been created in central Wyoming that takes in the Church’s Mormon Handcart Historic Site, the First Presidency has announced.

The Humanitarian Impulse (LDS Newsroom) (January 22, 2015)
It is hard to count the ways religion benefits society. Intangibles are what faith does best. Churches invigorate communities through local associations of support. Differences in religious worldviews enrich our common existence.

Missionaries Brighten Up Community Event in Houston, Texas (Church News) (January 22, 2015)
It was the morning of Saturday, November 8, 2014. Sister Dona Stelzig looked out across the local park in Houston, Texas, as volunteers and workers set up different booths that would be used for the Get Up! Get Moving! event, organized to help members of the local Hispanic community.

The Power of Personal Journals Is Enduring (Church News) (January 22, 2015)
The new year is here! What a future we have before us! But do we remember what we did last year or the year before? Reflecting back perhaps even a little further, do we remember how we felt when a best friend or a family member passed on?

Alexandria Church Marks 60th Anniversary with Open House (Alexandria Patch - Virginia) (January 22, 2015)
Local members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) are opening their doors this Sunday for a special event with their neighbors and friends, according to a news release from the group.

The Kirtland Temple (Patheos.com) (January 22, 2015)
Every year tens of thousands of people visit the Kirtland Temple, dedicated in 1836 by what was then the Church of the Latter Day Saints. The vast majority of those visitors are members of the Utah-based Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and they come in part to see where Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery saw Jesus Christ and Elijah in the temple.

Picturing history: Wilford Woodruff baptismal site (Deseret News - Utah) (January 22, 2015)
Wilford Woodruff was born in 1807 at Northington (now Avon), Connecticut. He spent his childhood in that area. Woodruff was quite well-educated by the standards of that time.

LDS dad among finalists for Doritos Super Bowl commercial contest (Deseret News - Utah) (January 22, 2015)
Jason Johnson enjoys spending time with his family, and for the past three years, entering the Doritos Super Bowl commercial contest has been an opportunity to do just that. But this year, the video Johnson created has far exceeded his expectations.

Wright Words: BYU freshman finds faith, 'tender mercies' after fall (Deseret News - Utah) (January 22, 2015)
On Friday, Sept. 26, 2014, Brigham Young University student Heather Burton joined her outdoor skills leadership class on a hike in Ding Canyon near Goblin Valley State Park. She was just three weeks into her dream of attending the Provo, Utah, university.

Advertise with usReport this ad Brad Rock: BYU asleep at the switch on Miami Bowl fallout (Deseret News - Utah) (January 22, 2015)
The second-most surprising thing about BYU I’ve seen in the last month was when its football team engaged in a full-on brawl with Memphis at the end of the Miami Beach Bowl.

BYU’s new alternate reality game: Save your parents’ lives with science (BYU News Release) (January 22, 2015)
A team of Brigham Young University students is about to knock every adult on the planet unconscious (in the name of science, of course) and it’s up to the world’s teenagers to save them.

January 21, 2015

Taking their faith to the street (Maryville Daily Forum - Missouri) (January 21, 2015)
It’s a familiar sight in Maryville — a familiar sight, in fact, in thousands of towns and cities all across the United States — two lanky, clean-cut young men in dress slacks, collared shirts and neckties walk down a residential street carrying satchels, occasionally stopping to ring someone’s doorbell.

David Knopf: Monument tucked on back road offers lesson on Mormon history (Kansas City Star - Missouri) (January 21, 2015)
Wandering is what makes this possible, and the dust on my car is evidence of my back-road curiosity. I turned off South Liberty Parkway to photograph a brilliant orange sun rising through the trees. When I was done, I continued up Campbell Drive, a Clay County two-lane, looking to turn around. On my right, I spotted a tall, four-sided monument behind an ornate fence. It was a remote area, surrounded by trees, a dilapidated farm and pasture pocked by junk cars and trash. I stopped for photos.

Mormon designer shares goodness, has missionary opportunities through app and Instagram account (Deseret News - Utah) (January 21, 2015)
For the past 18 years, Rhonna Farrer has tried to incorporate her mantra, "uplift and inspire," into her work as an artist. Now she shares positive messages with more than 60,000 followers on social media, as well as through her app, Rhonna Designs.

David Archuleta blogs about life in the spotlight as an introvert (Deseret News - Utah) (January 21, 2015)
David Archuleta’s vocal talent thrust him into the spotlight when he finished second on the seventh season of "American Idol" in 2008. While Archuleta appears to be at ease behind a microphone, he recently expressed in a blog post on his website that other aspects of fame have placed him outside his comfort zone.

Utah Jazz: Longtime Jazz usher Wally Price dies at 99 (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (January 21, 2015)
Escorted on each side by a young dancer, Wally Price pushed his walker down the center line of the hardwood court that had been such a central piece of his life, even if he rarely watched the games that took place on it. This was last April at EnergySolutions Arena. The poppy dance tune "Happy" was bumping over the speakers, and a few of the ushers who make things run a little more smoothly at every Utah Jazz home game were on the floor performing a routine at halftime of the season finale. "Wally, by golly!" public address man Dan Roberts exclaimed as the 98-year-old Price took his hands off his walker and shimmied along to the music.

BYU football: Cougars close to wrapping up 2015 signing class (Deseret News - Utah) (January 21, 2015)
Last-minute National Letter of Intent Day drama isn't something typically associated with most BYU signing classes, but this year's class could buck that trend. At least according to BYU recruiting coordinator Geoff Martzen, who said Tuesday there's several uncommitted prospects who could be making decisions for or against BYU on or shortly before NLI day.

BYU football: Memphis penalizes 12 players involved in brawl; Cougars handle measures internally (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (January 21, 2015)
Twelve Memphis football players who were involved in the brawl with BYU players after the Dec. 22 Miami Beach Bowl face penalties for their roles in the post-game melee, the University of Memphis announced Tuesday. Responding to media inquiries a few hours after the Memphis announcement, BYU associate athletic director for communications Duff Tittle said BYU has also completed a "thorough review" of the incident, but will not be announcing anything publicly.

Ordain Women's Bennett says being silenced gave her a voice (Daily Herald - Utah) (January 21, 2015)
During the past few years some vocal members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have been in the uncomfortable spot of choosing between their church activity, including temple recommends, and continuing with public commentary and conscience directed at the church and its doctrine. Unusual among them is the now-public story of April Young Bennett, one of the early founders of Ordain Women, who recently faced the delicate balance of public conscience versus private submission.

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