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October 30, 2014

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October 29, 2014

Mormon temple rises in southeast Fort Collins (Coloradoan) (October 29, 2014)
A vision of heaven is under construction in southeast Fort Collins. Work on a new temple for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, whose members are known as Mormons, is well underway at the intersection of Timberline and Trilby roads.

LDS Charities partners to help women in Iraq (Aliso Laguna News - California) (October 29, 2014)
LDS Charities - the humanitarian arm of the Church - is partnering with other organization s to help those impacted by the crisis in the Middle East. Recipients of the aid include Yezidi women in the Bajed Kandala 1 and 2 camps in norther Iraq. In addition to food and supplies, the women are receiving white dresses that are an important part of their religious identity.

Church Continues to Provide Aid to Ebola-Stricken West Africa (Church News) (October 29, 2014)
Even as health officials worldwide battle to contain the Ebola outbreak, the Church is working to ease the suffering of members in West Africa impacted by the virus. The Church Welfare Department’s humanitarian response arm has shipped food, cleaning supplies, and other emergency provisions to Latter-day Saint families in Liberia and Sierra Leone.

Freedom of Religion in the Workplace Discussed at the UN (LDS Newsroom Blog) (October 29, 2014)
Religious freedom in the workplace was the topic of a panel discussion at the United Nations in New York City. The event was co-hosted by the United Kingdom Mission to the U.N. and Brigham Young University’s International Center for Law and Religion Studies. The panel of legal and religion experts was assembled by BYU law professor W. Cole Durham Jr. on October 24, 2014.

'Meet the Mormons' an example of church efforts to portray 'lived experience' of real members (Deseret News - Utah) (October 29, 2014)
No LDS Church leader is interviewed, no unique doctrine is explained and the movie doesn't specifically feature Temple Square or church headquarters. To some observers, those features of "Meet the Mormons" — which now has made more than $5.25 million and is still in 128 theaters around the country — makes the documentary about the lives of six Latter-day Saint families different from past church-produced movies.

New Mormon curriculum divides scholars (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (October 29, 2014)
The LDS Church is overhauling its educational approach to Mormon scriptures — and while some are cautiously optimistic, others clearly are unhappy about it. The new curriculum — to be taught at all LDS colleges and in Mormon institutes and seminaries — will be based on four "cornerstone" courses...

From Utah, With Love (Newsweek) (October 29, 2014)
Mia Love is staring out at a sea of white faces. Just as she did the night before, and the night before that. It’s the same story here in Lehi, Utah, at the Lehi Legacy Recreation Center, where kids are learning karate in the room next door; the same story at the South Jordan Library, 14 miles away; the same story at a rally in the shadow of the Juab County Fairgrounds, “Home of the Ute Stampede,” where banner ads promote an upcoming demolition derby and a group of teenagers are huddled around a picnic table, agreeing that they don’t have a problem with gay marriage, as long as nobody tries to turn them gay. White, white, white. In nearly every room Love enters as she stumps her way across Utah’s 4th District on a quest to become the first black female Republican in Congress, she is not just the only black person there. She’s the only person of any color, unless you count farmer tans.

Monson: Bronco sold BYU fans a bad bill of goods (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (October 29, 2014)
It wasn’t that long ago that Bronco Mendenhall was talking about winning national championships at BYU. He said it multiple times over multiple years, as though it were some kind of manifest destiny. Now, he can’t win a game. After his team’s fourth straight loss, that lopsided defeat at Boise State on Friday night, Mendenhall had never before looked so … defeated. His dauber was down, his countenance befuddled. He seemed as low as he’d ever been. That’s what losing to Utah State, Central Florida, Nevada and Boise will do to a head coach. It’ll turn Middle Tennessee State into the biggest prize of his life.

Mormonism Online: In Your Own Words | 28 October 2014 (LDS Newsroom Blog) (October 29, 2014)
Reactions to Sacred Temple Clothing Video released a YouTube video last week that helped explain sacred temple clothing and temple garments, sometimes inaccurately referred to as “Mormon underwear.”

Second interactive, online event for LDS teens to feature Lindsey Stirling (Deseret News - Utah) (October 29, 2014)
Lindsey Stirling, the world-renowned dancing violinist, will be featured in the second “Face to Face” online event for youths hosted by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on Tuesday, Nov. 25, 2014, at 6:30 p.m. MDT. The first event, which was broadcast in June to more than 34,000 video streams around the world, featured David Archuleta, who had recently returned from a full-time mission.

David Archuleta and Lexi Walker sing 'A Whole New World' duet (Deseret News - Utah) (October 29, 2014)
LDS artists David Archuleta and Lexi Walker came together to perform "A Whole New World" at an event for Rising Star Outreach, an organization that provides medical and educational aid in leprosy colonies.

Partially paralyzed LDS runner completes Boston Marathon, preparing for New York City Marathon (Deseret News - Utah) (October 29, 2014)
Wendy Garrett lives by one mantra: “Life is tough, but I am tougher.” And if anyone knows how to be tough, it’s Garrett. Garrett practiced endurance at a young age when she started taking gymnastics at 6 years old. When she turned 23, she gained a passion for running.

Picturing history: William E. McClellin grave (Deseret News - Utah) (October 29, 2014)
Born in Smith County, Tennessee, in 1806, William E. McLellin joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1831. He was called to serve in the first Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in this dispensation in 1835. McLellin’s faith in the church wavered periodically. There were times when he was disfellowshipped or wrote a letter of withdrawal followed by full reinstatement in the church. He eventually left the church completely and became an enemy to the Prophet Joseph Smith. He associated with other religious factions from time to time but disassociated himself from all organized religions later in life.

What's new: George Q. Cannon's Hawaiian mission journals shares peek into early Mormon missionary life (Deseret News - Utah) (October 29, 2014)
In an invigorating era of “hastening the work,” it can be inspiring to peer back into LDS Church history to see how missionary work was done by men and women of remarkable faith, and with very little else. Such is certainly the case when reading about the missionary service of Elder George Q. Cannon as found in “The Journals of George Q. Cannon: Hawaiian Mission 1850-1854,” recently published by Deseret Book. Elder Cannon’s inspiring journals capture an important era in the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, while also providing an in-depth glimpse into how his mission prepared him for a lifetime of devoted service.

LDS Dems campaigning with billboards on clean air, education (Deseret News - Utah) (October 29, 2014)
A billboard along northbound I-15 in Davis County proclaims if the goal is to clear the air, vote for a Democratic candidate. The sign joins another in Weber County and eight others in Salt Lake County that are part of a major election push by the LDS Dems, the largest caucus in the Utah Democratic Party.

Young, Mormon, and Republican (Religion News Service) (October 29, 2014)
There’s an old stereotype that says Americans get more conservative as we get older. First we start voting for a few more Republican candidates because we finally have a little set aside that we want to protect from taxes, and then before we know it we have become that crotchety old man yelling at kids to get off our lawn.

Sex-trafficking survivor: ‘God put the best Mormons in my path for me to change’ (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (October 29, 2014)
Three weeks ago, Laurin Crosson got word that yet another "client" had slit the throat of yet another sex-trafficked woman. Crosson — who spent two decades in that dark, violent world — has seen the scenario painfully play out over and over. The No. 1 cause of death for women in the sex trade is murder, she says. Many either have no families or have been isolated by pimps. Their bodies often remain unclaimed in morgues.

October 28, 2014

Mormon Tabernacle Choir and BYU Broadcasting Win Emmys at the 2014 Rocky Mountain Emmy Awards (Mormon Tabernacle Choir news release) (October 28, 2014)
BYU Broadcasting won several Emmys recently at the 2014 Rocky Mountain Emmys, including an Emmy for “The Mormon Tabernacle Choir Presents an Evening with James Taylor.”

Young LDS mother claims Ironman title (LDS Church News) (October 28, 2014)
For most college athletes, graduation marks a moment of change — a time to box up game-day uniforms and training sneakers and shift to careers, sensible work shoes and maybe marriage and parenthood. But for former BYU distance runner Jocelyn Gardner McCauley, completing her college eligibility has simply meant shifting to (and excelling in) another sport.

U.S. State Department: 'No verifiable evidence' David Sneddon abducted by North Koreans (Herald Journal - Utah) (October 28, 2014)
The U.S. State Department said officials have “seen no verifiable evidence” that David Sneddon, a Brigham Young University student, was abducted by North Korean officials while hiking in China 10 years ago. The agency made the comments to The Herald Journal via a State Department spokesperson Monday. The spokesman, who wished to remain anonymous, was responding to questions about a letter penned by members of Utah’s congressional delegation last week. That letter asked for a fresh look at the case and suggested that Sneddon — whose parents reside in Providence — might have been kidnapped by the North Koreans.

LDSTech 2014 Update (LDS Church News) (October 28, 2014)
The annual LDSTech Conference was held Oct. 16-17 at the Salt Lake Institute adjacent to the University of Utah campus. “The main highlight this year has been the Gospel App and Game Contest,” said Anna Butler, committee chair for the event. “We had submissions from all over the world.”

Technology Solves Decades-Old Family History Mystery (Church News) (October 28, 2014)
Recently, we had a Relief Society lesson on the use of modern technology to do our family history research. Our teacher commented several times that “we have ancestors in the spirit world waiting to have their temple work done for them.” The statement brought to mind a recent experience I had. I’ve been receiving, almost on a weekly basis, emails from On one such email I noticed an offer to search out German military records.

If the profane 'Book of Mormon' qualifies as art, 'heaven help us' (Your letters) ( - New York) (October 28, 2014)
Thursday night my friend and I went to see the first production of our season tickets for Famous Artists, "Book of Mormon.'' We had no idea what the play was about. I did see that there was "explicit language," and there was someone on the streetcorner outside the Landmark calling us sinners for going to the performance. So a play about some Mormon missionaries going to Africa becomes humorous, if not hilarious, by throwing in lots and lots of "f-bombs," and juvenile sexual humor. At least that was the reaction of the audience -- they were beside themselves with laughter. I just looked around at the audience perplexed.

October 27, 2014

LDS Charities partners to help women in Iraq (LDS Church News) (October 27, 2014)
Women line up outside the medical clinic at the Bajed Kandala 2 camp in northern Iraq. Their faces are marked by the elements; their long white dresses darkened by the dust of their journey.

Church provides assistance during Ebola crisis (LDS Church News) (October 27, 2014)
Even as health officials worldwide battle to contain the Ebola outbreak, the Church is working to ease the suffering of members in West Africa impacted by the virus.

Insulted? Hardly. Missionaries use 'Book of Mormon' to spread message outside the Landmark ( - New York) (October 27, 2014)
For the last three nights, the musical "The Book of Mormon" has served up an irreverent dose of humor at the Landmark Theatre. Much of that humor comes at the expense of the Mormon faith and its missionaries. "Hello would you like to change religion?" goes a lyric in the opening number. "Have a free book written by Jesus!" Fortunately, it seems, Mormons have maintained their sense of humor. The church took out three full-page ads in the show's program promoting its religious text, The Book of Mormon. It's something they've done for productions around the country. "The book is always better," one ad reads.

Difference and Dignity (LDS Newsroom) (October 27, 2014)
Wouldn’t life be easier if everyone were the same? Think of the conflicts we could avoid if we all wanted the same things, voted the same way and went to the same church. The trouble is, however, that such a world doesn’t exist. The temptation to form everyone “from a single mold,” said Dieter F. Uchtdorf, second counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, “would contradict the genius of God, who created every man different.”[2]

Utah governor: Gay marriage may drive religious-freedom law (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (October 27, 2014)
Gov. Gary Herbert does not expect Utah lawmakers to try to undermine the new right of gays to marry in Utah, but he says that doesn’t mean they will not try such things as ensuring that churches and clergy won’t be forced to perform marriages. "I look at it more as a positive reinforcement of religious freedom as opposed to undermining the rights of same-sex couples," he said Thursday.

Members react to new LDS video on temple garments (Universe - Utah) (October 27, 2014)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released a new video showing and explaining the under garments and temple clothing that endowed members of the Church wear. The video came in the wake of the Church’s first feature film, “Meet the Mormons,” and seems to be another effort by the church to challenge “the stereotypes that surround the Mormon faith.”

LDS bishop says bout with cancer has focused his life for better (Standard-Examiner - Utah) (October 27, 2014)
The fast approaching Christmas season has Terry Tippets reflecting on the value of even the most simple of gifts. Diagnosed with Esophageal cancer a year ago, Tippets said he jumped right into painful treatments that left him on the receiving end of many gifts from others last holiday season. Tippets is a bishop of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints West Haven Country Meadows ward and is well versed in how he feels when he serves others.

Family of LDS Apostle raising awareness of their son's disease (Good 4 Utah) (October 27, 2014)
A Provo family whose son suffers from a rare disease is hoping to increase awareness of his condition. He's the grandson of a prominent member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. On Saturday, his family is holding a fundraiser so that's not the only thing you know him by. 14 month old Sam Bednar of Provo has a love for life, but he also has a life limiting disease.

Seven tech products to strengthen youth (LDS Church News) (October 27, 2014)
According to Pew Research done in 2013, the average teen sends 3,339 texts a month and teens ages 8 to 18 spend more than seven hours a day using entertainment media, Mike Madsen, product manager of the website, said at the LDSTech Conference on Oct. 17 at the Salt Lake Institute of Religion adjacent to the University of Utah campus. “The youth are plugged in,” he said. The way to reach them is with technology, and the Church has seven products that can help strengthen the youth:

Sheri Dew and Noelle Pikus-Pace arm wrestle in Time Out for Women video (Deseret News - Utah) (October 27, 2014)
Sheri Dew, president and CEO of Deseret Book and former second counselor in the Relief Society general presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, teamed up with Olympic medalist Noelle Pikus-Pace during a Time Out for Women event in Boise, Idaho, on Oct. 17-18.

Residents implicate LDS church in repeated floorings (Star Advertiser - Hawaii) (October 27, 2014)
Frustrated Hauula homeowners who are still recovering from a costly summer storm are blaming state and city officials and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for exacerbating flooding they say is increasing in severity and frequency.

October 24, 2014

'Meet the Mormons' reaches $4.5 million mark, now 37th on all-time documentary list (Deseret News - Utah) (October 24, 2014)
"Meet the Mormons" was the 16th biggest movie at the box office over the weekend with $568,409 after finishing 10th over the previous week.

Defending the Faith: Some things are more important than others (Deseret News - Utah) (October 24, 2014)
In October 1993, Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles spoke at the annual dinner of the Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies, an organization of Latter-day Saint scholars on the campus of Brigham Young University in those days. His topic was “The Historicity of the Book of Mormon,” which he defended against the suggestion beginning to emerge in some circles that the Book of Mormon be viewed as “inspired” but non-historical.

Stanford alum Guthrie back in Bay Area for big game (San Francisco Gate - California) (October 24, 2014)
Should Jeremy Guthrie last about half as long Friday night in Game3 of the World Series as he did in his most memorable start for Stanford, the Royals no doubt would take that in a second. On May 31, 2002, Guthrie pitched a complete game in the Cardinal’s 3-2 win over Cal State Fullerton in an NCAA regional matchup. Calling it a complete game is accurate, but doesn’t tell nearly the whole story; the right-hander, then a junior only days away from being drafted in the first round by Cleveland, went 13 innings.

Jeremy Guthrie’s still making Royals’ trade with Rockies look like a steal (Kansas City Star - Missouri) (October 24, 2014)
From the outside, anyway, the text message to Royals general manager Dayton Moore sounds more like the stuff of a prank or a joke than a sincere inquiry: “Hey, would you be interested in swapping struggling starters?” That’s the casual but all-too-true way Royals manager Ned Yost remembers Colorado dangling Jeremy Guthrie to Moore in the summer of 2012.

Changing fields: Returned missionary college football players find new opportunities to share gospel (Deseret News - Utah) (October 24, 2014)
Dallas Lloyd had a big decision to make. Four years ago, the Pleasant Grove High School senior had several scholarship offers to play college football. It would have been easy to stay close to home, but he was curious about the opportunities that might come outside of Utah. After visiting the schools and considering all the factors, counseling with his parents, creating a list of priorities and saying a lot of prayers, Lloyd felt strongly that Stanford University was where he needed to be.

2014 Latino Christmas Concert: “Ven a mi casa esta Navidad” (Church News) (October 24, 2014)
The three Utah areas of the Church will present a Latino Christmas concert, “Luz de las naciones: Ven a mi casa esta Navidad,” in the Salt Lake Tabernacle on Temple Square on Friday and Saturday, December 5 and 6, 2014, at 8:00 p.m., with a matinee performance on Saturday, December 6, at 2:00 p.m.

Maybe Don’t Make Fun of Mormon ‘Magic Underwear’ (New York Magazine) (October 24, 2014)
Seemingly out of the blue, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints this week published a video and post about the history and meaning behind Mormon temple garments, sometimes flippantly called “magic underwear.” The main point: It’s offensive to call the garments “magic underwear,” so everybody stop now, please.

Film on LGBT Mormons to screen at BYU (Universe - Utah) (October 24, 2014)
The Department of Theatre and Media Arts is releasing the first public screening of the student film “Pride and Faith” on Oct. 24. The documentary, written and directed by BYU alumnus Scott Raia, explores the complex lives of two LGBT students as they reconcile their identity and faith.

Mormons vs. Zombies: Mormon mom starts new video game (Updated) (Universe - Utah) (October 24, 2014)
Jana Maughan, 43, climbed down the stairs to her parents’ basement to retrieve some canned peaches. As the mother of five looked around at the boxes of wheat, rice, potato pearls and canned fruit she had an epiphany. “If anyone is going to survive the Zombie Apocalypse, it would be the Mormons,” she realized. Hence, the idea for Mormons vs. Zombies, a side scrolling-style game designed for iOS and Android, was born. The game, still in development, features a variety of archetypal Mormons, each with their own unique zombie-fighting weapon.

October 23, 2014

LDS Church publishes two new essays on past history of plural marriage (Deseret News - Utah) (October 23, 2014)
The LDS Church posted two lengthy new essays on its website Wednesday about plural marriage in the faith's early history.

New Mormon essay: Joseph Smith married teens, other men’s wives (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (October 23, 2014)
Mormon founder Joseph Smith took his first "plural wife," Fanny Alger, in the mid-1830s. He later married many additional women — including young teens and some who already were wed to other men — and introduced the practice of polygamy to select members in the 1840s.

Utahns support bill making clear clergy don't have to perform same-sex marriages, poll shows (Deseret News - Utah) (October 23, 2014)
Utahns overwhelmingly support legislation clarifying that clergy don't have to perform weddings for gay and lesbian couples, a new poll shows.

Young Women Leader Shares Message of Faith With Girl Scouts (LDS Newsroom Blog) (October 23, 2014)
Sister Bonnie L. Oscarson, Young Women general president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, discussed the impact of faith on the lives of girls with other youth religious leaders during a 90-minute panel discussion at the 2014 Girl Scouts Convention held Thursday, 16 October 2014, in Salt Lake City. The session was titled “Faith in Action: Understand the Impact of Faith on Girls’ Lives and on Their Communities.”

Sister Burton: Use Resources to Improve Learning and Teaching (Church News) (October 23, 2014)
In one of the rooms in the Relief Society Building hang four paintings. The first is a picture of the resurrected Savior with Mary Magdalene. Off to the side reads the purpose of Relief Society: “To prepare women for the blessings of eternal life.”

Campus enrollment returns to pre-2012 missionary age announcement levels (BYU-Idaho newsroom) (October 23, 2014)
Statistics released for Fall Semester 2014 at Brigham Young University-Idaho show a total campus enrollment of 16,193 students, an increase of 3.9 percent over last fall's campus enrollment of 15,584.

‘I had the advantage of disadvantage’ (Harvard Gazette) (October 23, 2014)
Laurel Thatcher Ulrich is Harvard’s 300th Anniversary University Professor, a feminist scholar with a taste for history from the bottom up and an appreciation for the pedagogic power of artifacts like hand-woven cloth and furniture. In 1990, she unraveled a cryptic 18th-century diary in “A Midwife’s Tale,” which earned a Pulitzer Prize. Soon after came a MacArthur Fellowship, and then — in 1995, when Ulrich was 57 — an invitation to teach at Harvard.

LDS church video addresses suicide prevention (Daily Herald - Utah) (October 23, 2014)
Every human soul is precious. But some souls are suffering and need love and friendship in a special way. That is the message of a new Mormon Messages video that went live online Tuesday night on the Mormon Channel. "Sitting on the Bench: Thoughts on Suicide Prevention," is intended to help individuals, through a number of examples, learn how they can help those suffering from depression, anxiety and thoughts of suicide.

Senior Missionary Couple Digitizes Over 180,000 County Records (Church News) (October 23, 2014)
Some of Montgomery County’s vital records date back to the 1820s. They are deteriorating, yet the county is required by law to preserve the information. Preserving the actual documents is too costly, and the county doesn’t have the manpower to microfilm them all. To solve this problem, the Montgomery County chief deputy clerk, Valerie Howard, working under the direction of clerk Jennifer Bentley, has entered into an agreement with FamilySearch to digitally preserve these old documents.

Donny Osmond coming to RootsTech in 2015 (Deseret News - Utah) (October 23, 2014)
Donny Osmond is coming to RootsTech in 2015. It was announced Wednesday that Osmond, the entertainer, actor, singer and television host, will be a keynote speaker at the world's largest family history conference on Saturday, Feb. 14, 2015.

LDS Church will give 'Standing for Something' award to film executive-turned-philanthropist (Deseret News - Utah) (October 23, 2014)
Leslie Moore, a senior missionary for LDS Church Public Affairs in Sydney, Australia, first heard of Scott Neeson at a synagogue when a Jewish rabbi equated his story with Joseph of Egypt. “We sat there in disbelief at what (Neeson) had done, and said he would be a good candidate for the ‘Standing for Something’ award,” Moore said.

Teens face charges for allegedly vandalizing LDS church (Fox 13 - Utah) (October 23, 2014)
Two teenagers accused of vandalizing a church in Duchesne County owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are now facing criminal charges.

October 22, 2014

Visitors Tour Phoenix Temple during Open House (Church News) (October 22, 2014)
In Arizona’s capital and largest city, visitors are touring the new Phoenix Arizona Temple during an open house that runs through Saturday, November 1.

Mormon Church peels back mystery of sacred undergarments (Washington Post) (October 22, 2014)
For years, the Mormon Church’s undergarments have been mocked and misunderstood. Often referred to jokingly as “magic Mormon underwear,” the garb, which resembles a T-shirt and shorts, has been ridiculed on Broadway, referenced in political campaigns and exploited online for profit. That’s why the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) has come forward to explain one of its most sacred Mormon mysteries. The church released a four-minute video on its Web site, comparing the white two-piece cotton “temple garments” to the priest’s cassock, nun’s habit, Jewish prayer shawl, Muslim’s skullcap and Buddhist monks’ saffron robes. It rejected the perception that the garments have protective powers.

Mormon church explains undergarments, denounces 'magic Mormon underwear' jokes (Christian Science Monitor) (October 22, 2014)
The Mormon church is addressing the mystery that has long surrounded undergarments worn by its faithful with a new video explaining the practice in-depth while admonishing ridicule from outsiders about what it considers a symbol of Latter-day Saints' devotion to God. The four-minute video on The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' website compares the white, two-piece cotton "temple garments" to holy vestments worn in other religious faiths such as a Catholic nun's habit or a Muslim skullcap.

Researching Family History: FamilyTree — Gathering 'a book containing the records of our dead' (Deseret News) (October 22, 2014)
In his inspired address titled "The Book” at general conference earlier this month, Elder Allan F. Packer of the Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints defined “... a book containing the records of our dead which shall be worthy of all acceptation" (see Doctrine and Covenants 128:24).

Mormons Around the World: Country Newsroom Websites | 20 October (LDS Newsroom) (October 22, 2014)
Women of the Church’s Relief Society in Lithuania got busy in August sewing quilts for infants living in a community children’s home — 14 hours later the 90 quilts were completed

Wright Words: A day in the life of Mormon missionaries in Norman, Oklahoma (Deseret News - Utah) (October 22, 2014)
This spring I spent time trailing missionaries from the Maryland Baltimore Mission serving in two very diverse areas: north Baltimore and my home ward in cozy Woodstock, Virginia.

Same-sex couples can now get married in the five most Mormon states (Washington Post - Washington, D.C.) (October 22, 2014)
From Alpine, Utah, to Queen Creek, Ariz., same-sex couples can now marry across the “Book of Mormon Belt.”

Seattle Mormons’ outreach to gays yields a spiritual feast (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (October 22, 2014)
The recent outreach effort to Mormon gays and lesbians in one Seattle LDS congregation was a "tremendous success," with attendance swelling to three times the usual number, according to participants.

'Joseph Smith: The Prophet of the Restoration' comes to Netflix (Deseret News - Utah) (October 22, 2014)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints continues to make its media library more accessible to the general public. Most recently, the movie "Joseph Smith: The Prophet of the Restoration" was made available on Netflix, according to Larry Richman of LDS Media Talk.

October 21, 2014

Prophet statue marks final stages of Mormon temple in Carmel (Indy Star - Indiana) (October 21, 2014)
The placement of an 8.5-foot, 900-pound, gold-plated statue atop a spire is just a moment in the construction project that will eventually become the Indianapolis Mormon Temple.

No, Mormon temples aren’t getting out of the marriage business (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (October 21, 2014)
It is a tad premature for Mormons to brace for a possible change in the LDS Church’s temple wedding policies, including Monday’s rampant Internet rumor that all members’ weddings would have take place first outside a Mormon temple. "Church leaders are well aware of the issues surrounding marriage and continue to examine them carefully," LDS Church spokesman Dale Jones said Monday in a statement, "but we are unaware of any meetings where changes to temple marriage policies have been discussed."

Mormon bloggers spreading reports of marriage changes in church (Daily Herald - Utah) (October 21, 2014)
Whether it's wishful thinking, or agitating for change, well-meaning LDS bloggers have suggested The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is changing its policy on church weddings. One blog and podcast,, has suggested LDS Church leaders will be announcing a policy change that would make it necessary for couples to be married civilly, by a Justice of the Peace or other official, before they can be sealed in an LDS temple ceremony. That information is new to LDS Church leadership, which released this statement Monday through LDS Church Public Affairs: "Church leaders are well aware of the issues surrounding marriage and continue to examine them carefully, but we are unaware of any meetings where changes to temple marriage policies have been discussed,” said Dale Jones, spokesperson for the church.

Mormon Media scholars discuss church and media intersection (Deseret News - Utah) (October 21, 2014)
Students and scholars came together Friday to learn about Mormonism's current and historic relationships with the media, from Twitter and Internet memes to action figures and portrayals on the big screen. Presenters gathered for the third annual Mormon Media Studies Symposium — sponsored by Brigham Young University and Brigham Young University-Idaho — at the BYU Salt Lake Center.

Could Mormon LDS Church Perceptions Be Changing? Seattle Leaders Invite Gay People to Worship (International Business Times) (October 21, 2014)
Leaders of a Seattle branch of the Mormon Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) have decided to sidestep the Law of Chastity to invite Mormon gay and lesbian members to worship. The Washington Park LDS Ward in Seattle sent out letters to its "less-active members within the ward boundaries", that invited them to attend a church sacrament meeting on 19 October, according to the Salt Lake Tribune.

The Book of Mormon Translated into Gregg Shorthand (YouTube) (October 21, 2014)
Mormon Prophet Joseph Smith originally translated the Book of Mormon from "The Golden Plates." Mormons believe that ancient prophets wrote the book. In this case Lisa Dayley has translated the Book of Mormon into American Gregg Shorthand - because she can.

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