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April 1, 2015

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March 31, 2015

Coverage of the April 2015 General Conference (Church News) (March 31, 2015)
During a year when the Church is celebrating the 100th anniversary of family home evening and the 20th anniversary of “The Family: A Proclamation to the World,” speakers for the General Women's Session of the 185th Annual General Conference focused on homes and families.

Record-Breaking RootsTech Continues to Be a Resource (Church News) (March 31, 2015)
The fifth annual RootsTech conference, hosted by FamilySearch, is officially in the record books as registering 23,918 attendees over three days, an 83 percent increase over 2014. And it’s not done yet as the world’s largest family history conference.

Latter-day Saints in Central America realizing blessings promised in the Book of Mormon (LDS Church News) (March 31, 2015)
The Book of Mormon offers a remarkable gospel promise for the people of Central America. “And at that day shall the remnant of our seed know that they are of the house of Israel, and that they are the covenant people of the Lord; and then shall they know and come to the knowledge of their forefathers, and also to the knowledge of their Redeemer, which was ministered unto their fathers by him; wherefore, they shall come to the knowledge of their Redeemer and the very points of his doctrine, that they may know how to come unto him and be saved” (1 Nephi 15:14).

Deceased LDS missionary hailed for example she set (Standard-Examiner - Utah) (March 31, 2015)
Family and friends were assured Monday that Brittany Nicole Scadlock was continuing the work she started on her mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints only in a different realm. The 19-year-old, who died March 11 of food poisoning while serving in the Argentina Resistencia Mission, was lauded as a faithful daughter of God and a righteous servant.

New policy lets female reporters attend all-male Mormon priesthood session (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (March 31, 2015)
For the first time in years, the LDS Church is allowing all reporters — including females — into the all-male priesthood session of the faith's General Conference. With rare exceptions through past decades, only male reporters were allowed to cover that priesthood meeting. Eventually, even male reporters were not given media access, though they could go in and watch the proceedings without raising suspicions because they were men.

New mission presidents (LDS Church News) (March 31, 2015)
Eight new mission presidents and their wives have been called by the First Presidency. They will begin their service in July.

The challenges and blessings of financing a Mormon mission (Deseret News - Utah) (March 31, 2015)
Dallin Checketts began pushing a mower and sweating in the family lawn care business with his older brothers at age 12. Amid full calendars with school, church, sports and other activities, the boys made time to collect their clients’ grass clippings with the ultimate goal of saving money to pay for their looming LDS missions.

Mormon missionaries’ escape portrayed in new movie “Freetown” (Religion News Service) (March 31, 2015)
Next Wednesday, April 8, more than 100 U.S. theaters will begin screening , which tells the true story of a courageous group of LDS missionaries caught in the crossfire during Liberia’s civil war. In 1990, eight elders and their driver squeezed into a small sedan for a harrowing journey from Monrovia to Freetown, Sierra Leone, where they hoped to serve out their missions in safety.

This 16-year-old Mormon model is setting the Internet on fire (New York Post) (March 31, 2015)
A lanky 16-year-old with dyed white hair and piercing blue eyes walks through Paris’ Jardin des Tuileries when a group of girls spots him. They raise their phones and start snapping photos while dozens more teens rush toward him. Suddenly, he’s surrounded by close to 200 squealing girls.

March 30, 2015

Church Leaders Focus on Family and Service at General Women's Session (LDS Newsroom) (March 30, 2015)
Leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints discussed the importance of women’s roles in the home and family and serving others as hundreds of thousands of women, young women and girls 8 years old and older gathered around the world on Saturday, March 28, 2015, for the general women’s session of the 185th Annual General Conference.

Cheryl A. Esplin: Filling Our Homes with Light and Truth (Church News) (March 30, 2015)
Sister Cheryl A. Esplin of the Primary general presidency spoke on filling lives with the light and truth of the gospel in her address at the General Women's Session of conference on March 28.

Carole M. Stephens: The Family Is of God (Church News) (March 30, 2015)
Sister Carole M. Stephens, first counselor in the Relief Society general presidency, framed her remarks Saturday night using the words of a Primary song sung earlier in the meeting—“The Family Is of God.”

President Henry B. Eyring: The Comforter (Church News) (March 30, 2015)
Latter-day Saint women can and must be an important part of the Savior giving comfort to those who need comfort, said President Henry B. Eyring on March 28.

Bonnie L. Oscarson: Defenders of the Proclamation (Church News) (March 30, 2015)
The world needs steadfast defenders of the Family Proclamation, said Sister Bonnie L. Oscarson, Young Women general president, during the General Women’s Session of conference held in the Conference Center on March 28.

Church Social Media Highlights Past and Present Women of Faith (Church News) (March 30, 2015)
In honor of the 2015 National Women’s History Month, many of the Church’s social media channels have joined forces to share inspiring stories and highlight women of faith throughout the month of March.

Photos from the General Women’s Session of April 2015 General Conference (Church News) (March 30, 2015)
Speakers at the General Women's Session of the 185th Annual General Conference on March 28 were Sister Cheryl A. Esplin, second counselor in the Primary general presidency; Sister Carole M. Stephens, first counselor in the Relief Society general presidency; and Sister Bonnie L. Oscarson, Young Women general president. President Henry B. Eyring of the First Presidency also addressed the women and girls gathered around the world. The meeting was conducted by Sister Linda K. Burton, Relief Society general president.

Church Shares 'Because He Lives' Easter Initiative (LDS Newsroom) (March 30, 2015)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will launch an Easter initiative focusing on the teachings of Jesus Christ on Saturday, March 28, 2015. The “Because He Lives” initiative is expected to reach millions through social media, month-long displays in select visitors’ centers, member and missionary tools and online paid promotion on hundreds of Internet sites.

Video: LDS Church releases Easter initiative (KSL - Utah) (March 30, 2015)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints recently released a video for the Easter season about Christ. The video accompanies an initiative sponsored by the church’s missionary department titled Because He Lives, focused on Christ’s teachings, according to a news release.

Preparing to split up, LDS General Primary Presidency looks back on 5 years of service together (Deseret News - Utah) (March 30, 2015)
The three women who have spent the past five years together running the LDS Church's international children's organization are splitting up. One of them is leaving the Primary General Presidency for a new calling, so all three have bittersweet feelings heading into the faith's springtime general conference, which begins Saturday night with the General Women's Session.

In a Game of Total Victory We All Lose (LDS Newsroom) (March 30, 2015)
It has been two full months since The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints called publicly for legislators to pass laws that safeguard religious freedoms while also extending protections in housing and employment for LGBT people. Six weeks after the Church’s news conference and after intense negotiations between various community stakeholders, the Utah State legislature passed groundbreaking legislation that achieved that goal.

Two Faiths Find Common Ground at Vancouver, Washington Easter Concert (LDS Newsroom) (March 30, 2015)
For nearly a decade at this time of year a special Easter celebration has taken place, the “Life of Christ” event in the Vancouver Washington West Stake (group of congregations) of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

In Post-Storm Vanuatu, Mormons Quick to Rebuild (LDS Newsroom) (March 30, 2015)
It wasn't long after Cyclone Pam ripped through Vanuatu (an island nation roughly 1,000 miles northeast of Australia) on March 13, 2015, that you could find local leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints hard at work, rebuilding homes.

Harry Reid and the increasingly rare Mormon Democrat (Washington Post) (March 30, 2015)
When Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.) steps down from the Senate in early 2017, Mormonism will lose its highest-ranking elected official -- and the most high-profile example that yes, there is such a thing as a Mormon Democrat.

Mormon church lobbying in Utah’s Capitol — hardball or light touch? (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (March 30, 2015)
Former state Rep. Carl Wimmer has ignited a fiery debate within Utah's political circles by accusing the LDS Church of bullying Mormon lawmakers on such controversial topics as illegal immigration, alcohol and, likely, the new law to protect gay and lesbian residents from workplace and housing discrimination.

Members of ‘Ordain Women’ pleased by recent changes made by LDS Church (Fox 13 - Utah) (March 30, 2015)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is hosting an all-women’s meeting Saturday, and it is the first such meeting to officially kick-off the LDS Church’s semi-annual General Conference.

Blue ribbons line the neighborhood of 2-year-old hit by car (Good 4 Utah) (March 30, 2015)
Police responded to an auto-pedestrian accident at an area at New Land Loop in Lehi. 2-year-old Tallin was walking with his father in the cul-de-sac where his house is. Tallin's grandfather says his mother was pulling out of the driveway and heading to the Women's session of LDS Conference and as she turned to pull forward of the cul-de-sac, Tallin ran in front of the Dodge Durango. He sustained life threatening injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene when first responders arrived.

Art exhibition highlights differences in collections of LDS Church, state of Utah (Deseret News - Utah) (March 30, 2015)
An abstract photograph of the Provo Temple, artistic scribbles transcribing LDS general conference and a hanging installation of decorative paper are among the diverse array of artworks in the new exhibition “Church vs. State: Contemporary Collecting Praxis” at the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art.

Mormon missionaries lead dedicated lives (News-Courier - Alabama) (March 30, 2015)
We’ve all seen young Mormon missionaries or been visited by them. They are such a common sight in our community that our eyes might slide over them without really taking notice of them. Traveling in pairs in white shirts and ties, short-clipped, neatly-combed hair, they bring their messages of strong families and dedication to any who care to listen. And those who care to inquire will find they sincerely live their message.

Richmond offers a plethora of Mormon history sites (Richmond News - Missouri) (March 30, 2015)
Previously I mentioned the 10 sites in Richmond that are a part of Mormon history. These sties are as follows: the Ray County Museum, which has a Mormon History Room; Pioneer Cemetery, that is now known as the Mormon Cemetery; Richmond City Cemetery, which is the final resting place of David Whitmer; the statue of Alexander Doniphan at the Ray County Courthouse; the site of the Wasson House, where Doniphan once lived; the former location of David Whitmer’s home and his livery stable; the Ray County jail site from 1838 that is located in the Salvation Army parking lot; a white picket fence located on Buchanan Street, which was once a log cabin where Joseph Smith was held in 1838; and the Farris Theatre.

March 27, 2015

Church Shares 'Because He Lives' Easter Initiative (LDS Newsroom) (March 27, 2015)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will launch an Easter initiative focusing on the teachings of Jesus Christ on Saturday, March 28, 2015

Annual General Conference Reaches Global Audience (LDS Newsroom) (March 27, 2015)
essions of the 185th Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will be broadcast live from the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, beginning on Saturday, March 28, 2015. The sessions of general conference will occur at the following times (all Mountain Daylight Time):

May 2015 Worldwide Devotional for Young Adults (Church News) (March 27, 2015)
A worldwide devotional for young adults will be transmitted over the Church broadcast system on Sunday, May 3, 2015. The speaker will be Elder Lynn G. Robbins of the Presidency of the Seventy.

Following Faith Mormon feminist wants women’s session to be just that — only women (Salt Lake Tribune) (March 27, 2015)
Suzette Smith hopes all the speakers at Saturday's LDS General Women's meeting will be female. The Washington, D.C., area consultant and devout Mormon believes the time is ripe for the faith's female leaders to take control of the semiannual meeting, which now has been designated as the official opening session of General Conference.

March 26, 2015

'A marvellous work and a wonder': A look back at the translation of the Book of Mormon 185 years after it was first published (Deseret News - Utah) (March 26, 2015)
It takes an average of five years to translate and produce the Book of Mormon in another language, according to LDS Church Public Affairs.

Unity in Diversity (LDS Newsroom) (March 26, 2015)
Can a church be unified and diverse at the same time? In a global world like ours, where people exchange ideas and culture easier than ever, the better question may be “How can a church survive without unity and diversity?” Far from a contradiction, the two complement each other, like sides of a coin.

Mormonism Online: In Your Own Words | 25 March 2015 (LDS Newsroom Blog) (March 26, 2015)
Latter-day Saints joined others from around the world to celebrate women in March. The online tributes began on International Women’s Day on March 8, 2015.

Mormons Around the World Country Newsroom Websites March 24, 2015 (LDS Newsroom Blog) (March 26, 2015)
Latter-day Saints in the Pacific have rallied together with aid from the humanitarian arm of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to help people devastated by Cyclone Pam which struck Vanuatu’s Tanna Island on March 13, 2015.

Defending the Faith: Joseph, the stone, the hat and why it all matters (Deseret News - Utah) (March 26, 2015)
Some critics of Joseph Smith mock the fact that part of the Book of Mormon translation process apparently involved dictating while looking at a stone that he’d placed within a hat.

Lawsuit: Ex-BYU student says eviction followed disclosure of ‘same-sex attraction’ (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (March 26, 2015)
A former Brigham Young University student has sued a Provo apartment complex over his eviction — a move he claims followed a violent dispute with roommates who wanted him ejected from the residence, the university and the LDS Church because they believed he is gay.

'Amazed by Grace' by Sheri Dew explores questions about grace, Atonement (Deseret News - Utah) (March 26, 2015)
When she was asked to speak at Brigham Young University’s Women’s Conference about the doctrine of grace, Sheri Dew was overwhelmed, the CEO of Deseret Book writes in the introduction of “Amazed by Grace.” As she prepared and discussed it with women she knew, Dew realized that grace was something many didn’t understand.

News roundup: On Tonight Show, Mitt Romney has a laugh with his reflection (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (March 26, 2015)
Which government do you trust? The Mitt in the mirror. UTA’s agree to reduce executive pay. Happy Thursday. Jimmy Fallon played Mitt Romney’s reflection in a funny bit on the Tonight Show that included this exchange about Romney’s upcoming charity "fight" against former heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield. Mitt Romney: "It’s for charity what is the worst that could happen?" Romney’s reflection: "That’s true. I guess it won’t be the first time we lose to a black guy." Romney: "Touche." [People]

Baylor University’s A Cappella Choir Gives Performance at Mormon Temple in Salt Lake City (Baylor news release - Texas) (March 26, 2015)
The Baylor University School of Music’s A Cappella Choir recently returned from a 10-day tour across the western United States, culminating in a performance at the 2015 National Conference of the American Choral Director’s Association (ACDA) in Salt Lake City. The 64-voice choir was one of four college choirs out of more than 120 submissions to receive invitations to perform at the event.

March 25, 2015

A How-To: Designing New Religion Cornerstone Courses for Improved Student Learning (BYU news release) (March 25, 2015)
It’s rare that changes in course requirements affect more than just a fraction of BYU students.

Funerals announced for Utahns killed in New Zealand car accident (KSL - Utah) (March 25, 2015)
Funeral plans were announced for two Richfield women and a man who were killed in a New Zealand car accident. The accident occurred March 11 just a few miles outside Hamilton, a city of about 145,000. Richfield residents Tammy and Richard Barnett and Mitchell and Ruth Peterson were in New Zealand on vacation and planning to visit the nearby LDS Temple at the time of the accident, officials said.

Picturing history: The Mormon Battalion at Tucson (Deseret News - Utah) (March 25, 2015)
Heading northwest from the San Pedro River, the Mormon Battalion approached the Presidio at the Mexican outpost of Tucson, now in Arizona, on Dec. 16, 1846.

BYU Singers celebrate 30th anniversary (BYU news release) (March 25, 2015)
The Brigham Young University School of Music presents the BYU Singers 30th Anniversary Concert on Friday, March 27, at 7:30 p.m., in the de Jong Concert Hall, Harris Fine Arts Center.

March 24, 2015

Significant LDS Church history discovery made (LDS Church News) (March 24, 2015)
It’s one of the most significant discoveries in Church photographic history. A small, wonderfully preserved daguerreotype (dag) of Wilford Woodruff taken during the Nauvoo-era at about the age of 37 was found and purchased recently on eBay by Utah photo historian Ron Fox and Anthony Christensen of Anthony’s Antiques and Fine Art.

Elder David A. Bednar, Sister Susan Bednar to answer youths' questions in live chat (Deseret News - Utah) (March 24, 2015)
Elder David A. Bednar, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and his wife, Sister Susan Bednar, will answer questions from youths around the world in an online "Face to Face" event on May 12, 2015, at 6 p.m. MST.

LDS Church: No tolerance for sex abuse in scouting (CNN) (March 24, 2015)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which is the largest sponsor of Boy Scout troops in the United States, says the church has strong measures in place to prevent the sexual abuse of scouts, as claims have been made it hasn't done enough.

Returned LDS missionary is U.S. marathon champ (LDS Church News) (March 24, 2015)
Jared Ward was about halfway through his two-year mission when he began wondering about his physical fitness level. Prior to serving in Pennsylvania, the young elder had been an elite high school distance runner and had committed to compete for Brigham Young University’s renowned cross-country and track and field teams. But mission life afforded him little time for serious training. He had put on a few pounds and was several months removed from his last hard workout.

Davis High's slick-shooting Jesse Wade is Deseret News' 2015 'Mr. Basketball' (Deseret News - Utah) (March 24, 2015)
When he was just a boy, only 5 or 6 years old, Jesse Wade walked into the Davis High School gymnasium one day and noticed a banner hanging high up on the gym's south wall. That banner honored the Darts' Brody Van Brocklin for being named "Mr. Basketball," the award given annually by the Deseret News to the premier prep player in the state.

Interfaith Musical Tribute represents various faith traditions at the Salt Lake Tabernacle (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (March 24, 2015)
Members of the Kargi Kala Kendra Indian Classical Dance School perform during the Salt Lake Interfaith Roundtable's Interfaith Musical Tribute on Sunday at the Salt Lake Tabernacle. Performances included songs, dance, scripture and prayers from the faith traditions of Buddhist, Catholic, Celtic, Greek Orthodox, Hindu, Jewish, Latter-day Saint, Muslim, American Indian , Protestant and Unitarian. For more information on the roundtable or Interfaith Month events, go to www.interfaithroundtable.org

Utahn used Mormon ties to rip off investors, court papers allege (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (March 24, 2015)
Investors face up to $65 million in losses from funds run by a Washington, Utah, man who is accused of taking hundreds of thousands of dollars in kickbacks from dubious companies in which he placed money, including at least one which operated as a Ponzi scheme, court documents say.

Mormon Studies Program Funds New Classes About LDS Religion (Daily Utah Chronicle) (March 24, 2015)
The U’s Tanner Humanities Center changed the Mormon Studies Programming Initiative fundraising goal after a $20,000 pledge from Peter and Brynn Huntsman tipped the organization past their initial $100,000 goal.

LDS honors outstanding teachers (Manteca Bulletin - California) (March 24, 2015)
The 4th Annual Crystal Apple Awards were held recently at the Northland building of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. The Saturday evening event recognized and honored outstanding educators from various high schools in Manteca, Lathrop, Ripon, and Tracy.

March 23, 2015

General Women’s Session Will Focus on Family, Leaders Say (Church News) (March 23, 2015)
During a year when the Church is celebrating the 100th anniversary of family home evening and the 20th anniversary of “The Family: A Proclamation to the World,” general leaders of the Primary, Young Women, and Relief Society organizations are looking forward with great anticipation to the general women’s session of general conference.

President Uchtdorf Lauded as a Community Builder (Church News) (March 23, 2015)
The Inclusion Center for Community and Justice honored President Dieter F. Uchtdorf on March 19 for his ongoing commitment to bring people of all backgrounds together and to better their communities. President Uchtdorf, second counselor in the First Presidency, was presented with the organization’s Humanitarian Award during its annual awards social in Salt Lake City.

Scriptures committee announces 'exciting developments' in standard works translations (LDS Church News) (March 23, 2015)
Almost 185 years after the first pages of the Book of Mormon were printed on E. B. Grandin’s press in Palmyra, New York, the 110th translation of the Book of Mormon was published online. The First Presidency announced March 18 the publication of the Kosraean Book of Mormon — the first book of scripture available in that language — on LDS.org and the Gospel Library. Printed copies will be available in July. Kosrae is an island in the Federated States of Micronesia.

Church Leaders Visit Caroline Kennedy, U.S. Ambassador to Japan (LDS Newsroom Blog) (March 23, 2015)
While leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints were in Japan recently, they met with Caroline Kennedy, United States Ambassador to Japan, at the American Embassy in Tokyo.

New Temple Presidents Called for Palmyra New York and Bountiful Utah Temples (Church News) (March 23, 2015)
Two temple presidents and matrons have been called by the First Presidency. They will begin their service later this year.

New Features You’ll Find at FamilySearch.org (Church News) (March 23, 2015)
FamilySearch.org, as it grows and develops, can help family history enthusiasts meet their goals in this and coming years, a speaker at the recent RootsTech 2015 family history conference in Salt Lake City said.

On the Go? Family History Apps Will Go with You (Church News) (March 23, 2015)
With the accessibility of phones, tablets, and helpful apps being developed constantly, family history work is easier than ever before and is available to people of all ages.

BYU looking forward to an influx of talent next season (Deseret News - Utah) (March 23, 2015)
BYU’s basketball program has said goodbye to its all-time leading scorer, Tyler Haws, but a lot of talent is returning, or joining the team, next season. The Cougars’ next prolific scorer could be sharp-shooting guard Nick Emery, who led Lone Peak High to state titles in 2011, 2012 and 2013, and has returned from his LDS mission.

Utah native Brown wins NCAA wrestling championship (KSL - Utah) (March 23, 2015)
Penn State wrestler Matt Brown set a goal to become the first returned LDS missionary to win an individual NCAA wrestling championship. Mission accomplished. The Cyprus High School grad and West Valley City native defeated Pittsburgh’s Tyler Wilps, 5-4, Saturday in St. Louis to win the national championship in the 174-pound division.

“Bodies Filled with Light” Exhibit Illustrates References to Body in Scriptures (Church News) (March 23, 2015)
“And if your eye be single to my glory, your whole bodies shall be filled with light, and there shall be no darkness in you; and that body which is filled with light comprehendeth all things” (D&C 88:67).

What Mormons should know about NBC's new television series 'A.D.' (Deseret News - Utah) (March 23, 2015)
Latter-day Saints who tune in to “A.D.: The Bible Continues” can expect a fairly accurate visual depiction of the New Testament, according to a trio of scholars at Brigham Young University. And hopefully, they say, the forthcoming NBC miniseries will bring viewers closer to the Holy Bible.

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