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February 18, 2018

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February 16, 2018

Two Mormon Girls Numbered among Victims of Mass Shooting at Florida High School (Church News) (February 16, 2018)
The family of Alaina Petty, a Mormon teen who was killed in Wednesday’s Florida school shooting rampage, is “heartbroken” by the loss of their loved one.

Church Statement on Florida School Shooting (LDS Newsroom) (February 16, 2018)
Once again we find ourselves as a nation and as communities faced with a tragic loss of life and incomprehensible sorrow following the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida. Among the many injured or killed were two members of our faith. To all of the victims and their loved ones, we extend our love. These are hours filled with grief, emptiness and a terrible sense of loss. We unite our prayers with millions of others who are mourning and praying for them.

Reason to rejoice: missionaries return to Puerto Rico (LDS Church News) (February 16, 2018)
When Hurricane Maria’s lethal winds and rain finally subsided, Puerto Rico San Juan Mission President David Smart wandered about his neighborhood, searching for cell service. After finally discovering a weak signal he dialed Church headquarters and uttered, perhaps, the happiest words he had ever spoken: “All the missionaries are safe and accounted for.”

Conference planned by black Mormons will feature black Mormons, talking about black LDS history and experiences (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (February 16, 2018)
It’s an auspicious time for black Mormons, with an approaching anniversary that will be honored in workshops, conferences, speeches and celebrations throughout 2018.

Histories of black Mormon pioneers remind us 'all are alike unto God' (LDS Church News) (February 16, 2018)
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the 1978 Revelation on Priethood given to late Church President Spencer W. Kimball regarding priesthood availability to all worthy male members of the Church. And with the celebration of black history month in February, independent historian Amy Thiriot said it is “a joyous occasion and a fitting time to remember the earliest black members” in the Church.

LDS blogger Corrine Stokoe shares 'real life love story' of husband's pornography addiction recovery (Deseret News - Utah) (February 16, 2018)
Utah native Corrine Stokoe found peace and happiness after seven years of struggling with her husband’s recovery from a pornography addiction. In a Valentine's Day post on her blog, Stokoe opened up about her family's experience in an effort to provide others with hope.

February 15, 2018

Three Latter-day Saint Olympic athletes chase gold medal dreams in South Korea (LDS Church News) (February 15, 2018)
Three members of the Church are chasing gold medal dreams in the 2018 Pyeongchang Games.

BYU Church History Symposium scheduled for March 1-2 (LDS Church News) (February 15, 2018)
The annual BYU Church History Symposium is scheduled for March 1-2, and will focus on topic, “Financing Faith: The Intersection of Business and Religion.” The 2018 Church History Symposium will explore the intersection of finance and religion in the LDS Church between 1830 and 1930. Join scholars in taking a fresh look at Mormon history through economic and spiritual lenses.

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland shares sweet Valentine's Day tribute to his wife (LDS Church News) (February 15, 2018)
In a sweet tribute on Facebook, Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles shares his love and appreciation for his "forever valentine." "What I have learned of romantic love and the beauty of marriage I have learned from Sister Holland. I am honored to be her husband. She is my forever valentine.

Civil trial against Mormon Church enters week five (The Journal - West Virginia) (February 15, 2018)
The civil trial involving a suit against the Mormon Church and members of the church has entered week five in Berkeley County Circuit Court.

February 14, 2018

Cyclone Gita Pounds the Kingdom of Tonga (LDS Newsroom) (February 14, 2018)
Described as the strongest storm to hit Tonga in recent history, Cyclone Gita pounded the Kingdom of Tonga with fierce winds and torrrential rain. Power was shut off as a precautionary measure prior to the storm's landfall.

People of Samoa and American Samoa Clean Up After Cyclone Gita (LDS Newsroom) (February 14, 2018)
“Some parts of Samoa are still under water following Tropical Cyclone Gita as emergency services struggle to clear roads and put back power on,” Radio New Zealand reported yesterday. “Cyclone Gita wrought significant damage in both Samoa and American Samoa,” the report added.

Elder Alexander B. Morrison, renowned scientist and LDS emeritus general authority, dies at age 87 (Deseret News - Utah) (February 14, 2018)
Elder Alexander B. Morrison, a scientist who fought against hunger and disease and later served in the Quorums of the Seventy for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for more than 14 years, died quietly at home on Monday, Feb. 12, 2018, after a long and valiant battle with Parkinson’s disease. He was 87.

Kearns speedskater Jerica Tandiman says Mormon faith, family helped her achieve Olympic dream (Deseret News - Utah) (February 14, 2018)
Jerica Tandiman may have followed her older sister into figure skating had she not learned to ice skate at the Utah Olympic Oval in Kearns. “I was about 7 years old, and my parents had my older sister and I go there to learn to skate,” said the 23-year-old who will compete in her first Olympic event Wednesday night. “My sister was doing figure skating lessons, and I wanted to skate too. I saw the speed skaters training and I thought that looked pretty cool.”

Mormon leaders inspire BYU students, Utahns to serve refugees (Daily Universe - Utah) (February 14, 2018)
Early members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints were no strangers to persecution. They experienced situations that would qualify many of them for refugee status today. Church members were often driven out of their homes in the 1830s and 40s. One such incident occurred when they were driven out of Missouri during the winter of 1838 and 1839 and were taken in by residents of Quincy, Illinois, before ultimately settling in Nauvoo, Illinois.

February 13, 2018

Mormon Helping Hands Serving at Pyeongchang Winter Olympics (LDS Newsroom Blog) (February 13, 2018)
Mormon Helping Hands, the Church’s program for worldwide volunteer community service, has a center that provides services to support a successful Pyeongchang Olympic Games.

Missionaries Safe in Cyclone-Battered Tonga, Samoa (Church News) (February 13, 2018)
Mormon missionaries serving in cyclone-battered Tonga and Samoa are accounted for and unharmed.

Historian to discuss black Mormon pioneers such as Green Flake and Utah’s relationship with slavery (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (February 13, 2018)
In the years before America’s bloody Civil War ended black slavery, it was euphemistically called the nation’s “peculiar institution.” Historian Amy Tanner Thiriot says it was even more peculiar in the prewar Utah Territory, where Southern converts to Mormonism, making the journey to their faith’s desert refuge in the late 1840s and early 1850s, brought about 100 slaves with them.

500 Church Members Commemorate Exodus of Pioneers from Nauvoo (Church News) (February 13, 2018)
Some 500 members, missionaries, and visitors walked the Trail of Hope on Saturday, February 3, commemorating the exodus of the pioneers from this city 172 years ago.

Casting call for Book of Mormon videos (LDS Church News) (February 13, 2018)
The LDS Motion Picture Studio is casting talent for the Church’s video library depicting scenes from the Book of Mormon. Members who are seasoned actors, amateurs, or those with no acting experience are invited to visit for more detailed information.

Resignation of White House staffer shines light on LDS Church’s abuse training (Fox 13 - Utah) (February 13, 2018)
The resignation of White House staffer Rob Porter is shining a light on domestic abuse and the role LDS bishops have in aiding victims.

February 12, 2018

Women faith leaders meet in Wales to discuss faithful living (LDS Newsroom) (February 12, 2018)
Local and international women’s leaders from Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, and Christian communities gathered on February 9, 2018, in the Welsh city of Newport to engage in dialogue about ‘Living faithfully in an increasingly secular world’.

LDS women leaders participate in international conference (Daily Herald - Utah) (February 12, 2018)
Two top woman leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints — Sister Jean B. Bingham and Sister Joy D. Jones — began a 10-day trip to Europe by attending the World Women’s Interfaith Conference on Friday, Feb. 9, in Newport, Wales.

Billionaire, family man remembered at funeral for life of devoted service to others (LDS Church News) (February 12, 2018)
Within the university arena and in the vicinity of the cancer research hospital that each bear his name and legacy, billionaire industrialist, philanthropist and Church leader Jon Meade Hunstman was honored at a funeral service Saturday, Feb 10.

‘Beautifully multifaceted’: Jon Huntsman’s kids and Mormon leaders remember the Utah philanthropist who loved Elvis and chocolate ice cream (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (February 12, 2018)
Jennifer Huntsman Parkin had already spotted her dad walking around their neighborhood, exercising as Elvis Presley crooned through his headphones, so she knew what the knock at her door meant. When she opened it, he stood there grinning with a spoon in his hand.

Young Men general presidency: greater opportunities to serve in temple will lead to deeper conversion (LDS Church News) (February 12, 2018)
On Dec. 14, 2017, the First Presidency sent a letter to priesthood leaders. In it they announced that “under the direction of the temple presidency, ordained priests may be asked to officiate in baptisms for the dead, including performing baptisms and serving as witnesses.”

Rob Porter, and Mormonism's #MeToo Moment (CNN) (February 12, 2018)
Colbie Holderness says she met Rob Porter at a Mormon student congregation in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Lifelong Mormons, they married in the church in 2003. When Porter turned abusive and their marriage went bad, Holderness said, they turned to the church for guidance.

February 9, 2018

Rededication Date Announced for Houston Texas Temple (LDS Newsroom) (February 9, 2018)
The First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced Thursday that the Houston Texas Temple will be rededicated on Sunday, April 22, 2018.

Getting to know President M. Russell Ballard, Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles (LDS Church News) (February 9, 2018)
His great-great-grandfather, Hyrum Smith, was martyred at Carthage with the Prophet Joseph. His grandfather, Elder Melvin J. Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, recorded a dream in which the Savior appeared to him in a room in the Salt Lake Temple and embraced him.

Jon Huntsman Sr. worked 'harder, longer, stronger' for the Church, family, business, philanthropy (LDS Church News) (February 9, 2018)
Sitting in his office at the Church Administration Building, President M. Russell Ballard holds a worn and heavily marked set of scriptures — bound together with two rubber bands — and talks about his friend Jon M. Huntsman Sr.

A true believer: Remembering the faith and works of Jon Huntsman Sr. (Deseret News - Utah) (February 9, 2018)
The wealthy businessman's worn, leather-bound scriptures brim with red pencil markings and extra paper, notes tucked away between the pages. Two large rubber bands, one tan and the other orange, work to hold everything inside.

Defending the Faith: National Geographic discovery of Mayan ruins not proof, but very interesting (Deseret News - Utah) (February 9, 2018)
Many members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are excited about an exclusive National Geographic article that appeared online at on Feb. 1, 2018, by Tom Clynes, titled, “Laser Scans Reveal Maya ‘Megalopolis’ Below Guatemalan Jungle: A vast, interconnected network of ancient cities was home to millions more people than previously thought.”

East Valley losing another high-profile leader to Mormon mission (Arizona Central) (February 9, 2018)
John Lewis is resigning as president and CEO of the East Valley Partnership in late May to serve a Mormon mission overseas. The former Gilbert mayor took over leadership of the East Valley coalition in January 2016. Now, he will step down to serve as a mission president of the Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Church in Cambodia.

Mormon bishops told ex-wives of former Hatch, White House staffer to consider his ‘career ambitions’ when they reported his physical abuse, they say (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (February 9, 2018)
The LDS Church declared Thursday that it has “zero tolerance” for abuse of any kind but couldn’t speak directly to allegations by the ex-wives of a former White House official who reported they received no help from their Mormon clergy when they were being abused.

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