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February 13, 2016

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February 12, 2016

Sister Linda K. Burton writes about emotional and mental welfare: 'Keep an eternal perspective' (LDS Church News) (February 12, 2016)
I recently had the privilege to visit a Relief Society whose members are all elderly sisters in their 80s and 90s.

RootsTech vignettes (LDS Church News) (February 12, 2016)
In only a few years, RootsTech has grown to be one of the biggest family history conferences around the world and brings thousands of people together — in the Salt Palace in downtown Salt Lake City and visitors who watch online — to learn about the latest improvements and tools in the industry.

LDS Church members in Dubai participate in interfaith conference about strengthening homes, families (LDS Church News) (February 12, 2016)
More than 250 delegates gathered in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on Feb. 3 for the first World Interfaith Harmony Day, held as part of United Nations World Interfaith Harmony Week. Latter-day Saints living in the United Arab Emirates participated in the conference, in which speakers addressed the topic: “Peace at Home Builds Peace in the World.”

Mormons Around the World Country Newsroom Websites February 11, 2016 (LDS Newsroom Blog) (February 12, 2016)
United Kingdom: Refugees on the Minds of Mormon Helping Hands More than 5,400 meals were prepared last month by Mormon Helping Hands volunteers for Care4Calais, a charity that assists refugees.

Sharing Goodness One Hashtag at a Time (Church News) (February 12, 2016)
During his keynote address at Brigham Young University’s Campus Education Week in August of 2014, Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles invited Church members everywhere to “fill the earth with goodness.”

Young Church-Service Missionaries Invite Others to Come to Christ (Church News) (February 12, 2016)
There’s an adage that advises, “Bloom where you’re planted.” “In my family it’s ‘Bloom where you’re transplanted,’” Sariah Yiqun Baker said. Sister Baker has been “transplanted” many times in her 23 years—first from her native country of China as she was adopted by American parents and then as her family moved while her father fulfilled assignments in an international company. Most recently, Sister Baker put down roots in Utah, where she finished a year as a Church-service missionary at Welfare Square.

David Archuleta says ‘most fulfilling performances’ were as an LDS missionary (Deseret News - Utah) (February 12, 2016)
In his latest blog post, David Archuleta, a Utah-based singer-songwriter, wrote about the musical experiences he had on his mission. Archuleta served a full-time mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Chile from 2012 to 2014. In his Tuesday blog post, he wrote about how he would perform in the homes and yards of people who did not recognize him for his music career.

February 11, 2016

Friends, family remember sister missionary killed in Pennsylvania (Deseret News - Utah) (February 11, 2016)
An LDS missionary who was killed in a car accident in Pennsylvania on Tuesday will be remembered for her positive nature and life-changing smile.

Friends and family remember Sister Sadie Wells, LDS missionary killed Tuesday in Pennsylvania (Daily Herald - Utah) (February 11, 2016)
Sweet memories from friends and family continue to fill social media sites as they honor Sister Sadie Danielle Wells of Kaysville, who was killed Tuesday while serving in the Pennsylvania Pittsburgh Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Mormon presence in Turkey and neighboring countries (Turkish Weekly) (February 11, 2016)
Since 2011, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, commonly abbreviated as LDS, was granted full recognition by the Turkish Government. The LDS Church is now allowed to own property and can send full-time, proselyting missionaries to operate on Turkish soil. Originally, missionary activity in Turkey operated under the supervision of the LDS mission in Bulgaria. Currently, the LDS Church has a mission headquartered in Istanbul, which organizes the church's activities in Turkey, Azerbaijan, and the Turkic Republics of Central Asia: Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan. However, at this time the LDS Church only has proselyting missionaries operating in Turkey and Kazakhstan. The Church has had missionaries in Kazakhstan for several years, which, until recently, were under the supervision of one of the missions in Russia. Concerning congregations, Turkey currently has five branches: one in Istanbul, Izmir, Ankara, Gaziantep, and at a military base in İncirlik-Adana; Kazakhstan has missions in both Almaty and Astana. As for the rest of the Middle East, the LDS Church has congregations in many countries, such as Jordan, Israel, Lebanon, the United Arab Emirates, and Bahrain, but these missions are typically limited, or non-proselyting, missions. Most of the members of these congregations are originally from other countries.

Mormon Tabernacle Choir announces virtual sing-along opportunity (Deseret News - Utah) (February 11, 2016)
All who have dreamed of singing with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir now have a chance. The Mormon Tabernacle Choir is inviting people throughout the world to join in a virtual sing-along of George Frideric Handel’s “Hallelujah" chorus.

LDS Missionaries Go Two-by-Two, Door-to-Door (Daily Democrat - Iowa) (February 11, 2016)
Door-to-door salesmen are a thing of the past. Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts are discouraged from selling their wares that way; rather, they should solicit family and friends. But one thing that hasn’t changed is the door-to-door approach by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (LDS).

Defending the Faith: The Book of Mormon wasn't what they expected (Deseret News - Utah) (February 11, 2016)
Even before publication of the Book of Mormon in March 1830, most people knew what to expect from “that spindle shanked ignoramus Jo Smith,” as Abner Cole would shortly describe him. And opinions didn’t change after it actually appeared.

RootsTech presenter shares tips for using Facebook for family history (Deseret News - Utah) (February 11, 2016)
Thomas MacEntee knows Facebook can be one of the most valuable tools for finding information — the sheer number of people around the world who use Facebook can help locate distant relatives or overcome roadblocks.

Shared LDS faith strengthens bond between 2 Utah men featured on A&E's new weight-loss show (Deseret News - Utah) (February 11, 2016)
When JJ Peterson first walked into Ray Stewart’s Spanish Fork home in February 2015, he looked for clues indicating that the two men shared the same LDS faith. It didn’t take Peterson long to spot a copy of the Book of Mormon.

Jorge Cocco Santangelo: Arte Sacro (The Krakens) (February 11, 2016)
Jorge Cocco Santangelo is an Argentinian painter who also works in sculpture, lithograph, etching, ceramics, and washi zokey (art with handmade paper). His work has been acquired and exhibited at museums in Argentina, Japan, Mexico, Spain, Uruguay, and the United States. He has lived and worked in both Spain and Mexico. He maintains studios in both the United States and Argentina.

February 10, 2016

LDS sister missionary from Kaysville killed in Pennsylvania crash (Deseret News - Utah) (February 10, 2016)
A sister missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints died in an automobile accident Tuesday in Pennsylvania, church officials confirmed.

Utah missionary dies in Pennsylvania car crash (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (February 10, 2016)
A Mormon missionary from Utah died Tuesday in a car crash in Pennsylvania. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints identified the woman as Sadie Danielle Wells, 20, of Kaysville.

Elder Oaks speaks at Johns Hopkins: Religious freedom essential for free, prosperous society (LDS Church News) (February 10, 2016)
There is growing global recognition of the need for engagement with and understanding of religion — and protecting religious freedom. That was the message delivered by Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in his Feb. 9 address to the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.

Joseph and Emma Smith's home in Harmony, Pennsylvania (Deseret News - Utah) (February 10, 2016)
Shortly after Joseph Smith acquired the golden plates from Hill Cumorah in western New York, he and his wife, Emma, moved to Harmony, Pennsylvania. They lived in a small home on 13 acres not far from the home of Emma’s parents for most of 1828-1830.

Forbes features Rootstech company competition (Deseret News - Utah) (February 10, 2016)
RootsTech, the largest family history conference in the world, was held Feb. 3-6 in Salt Lake City, bringing together not only those interested in family history work but also companies that facilitate family history work.

Multimedia storytelling can help make family history more accessible, easier to share (Deseret News - Utah) (February 10, 2016)
When multiple media sources are used together to tell a story that's passed down in a family, it becomes more dynamic and assumes more dimensions than words typed on a page, said Devin Ashby, a FamilySearch project manager, during a presentation on multimedia storytelling at the RootsTech family history conference at the Salt Palace Convention Center on Thursday.

Morning links: BYU, Virginia fans share moment of suspense; Utes on the bubble (Deseret News - Utah) (February 10, 2016)
Just before noon Eastern Time on Monday, a tweet was posted from the Virginia Cavaliers official account that put BYU and Virginia fans in a joint state of suspense.

Dick Harmon: BYU's Sitake wants former Cougar to be program's new director of personnel (Deseret News - Utah) (February 10, 2016)
Kalani Sitake wanted Jack Damuni to fly from Maui to be in Provo for BYU’s letter of intent signing day a week ago. Damuni, a Cougar defensive back in the early '90s post-Detmer era, made that trip happen as fast as a plane would carry him. He hovered around the football offices that day, hung out with staffers and former players and seemed as excited as a kid on Christmas. Sitake wants him to be the program’s director of personnel, replacing Justin Anderson who followed Bronco Mendenhall to the University of Virginia.

Rolly: Mormon church balks at increased water testing at Scout camps (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (February 10, 2016)
It doesn't compare with Flint, Mich., but the LDS Church brought out its big guns recently to resist the state's proposal to increase the frequency of water sampling at Scout camps and similar places. At a Jan. 20 public hearing of the Utah Division of Drinking Water, officials of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and its law firm, Kirton McConkie, said the rule change would cost the Salt Lake City-based faith an additional $40,000 a year and wouldn't reduce the risk of contamination.

February 9, 2016

Church Missionary Department Explains Approach to Zika Virus (LDS Newsroom) (February 9, 2016)
In recent weeks, general public concern over the spread of the Zika virus has prompted some questions about the Church’s approach to protect its missionaries.

Mormon church opposition to marijuana bill changes at least one vote (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (February 9, 2016)
At least one and possibly two senators have abandoned their support of a medical-marijuana bill pending in the Utah Legislature after the LDS Church issued a statement opposing the measure. The measure's sponsor, Sen. Mark Madsen, R-Saratoga Springs, said his colleagues' change of heart is a blow to his effort to make Utah the 24th state to legalize medical cannabis, but he hopes there is still time to make the case to senators that the bill is worth passing.

As Zika spreads, Mormon church emphasizing prevention for missionaries (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (February 9, 2016)
While Mormon missionaries serve in countries where the Zika virus has cropped up, their church is emphasizing that they protect themselves. The mosquito-borne virus so far is in the Americas, Somoa, American Samoa, Tonga and Cape Verde, and "it will be difficult to determine how the virus will spread over time," according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Utah-based Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is closely monitoring the situation and has been re-emphasizing instructions on avoiding mosquito-borne viruses to its missionaries around the world.

Learning from generations (LDS Church News) (February 9, 2016)
Relationships are important in God’s plan, Brother Stephen W. Owen, Young Men general president taught during the Family Session of Family Discovery Day at RootsTech on Feb. 6.

Larry King interviews Lindsey Stirling about her career, new book and LDS faith (Deseret News - Utah) (February 9, 2016)
In an interview with broadcaster Larry King, dubstep violinist Lindsey Stirling talked about her career as a musician; her new book, “The Only Pirate at the Party”; and her faith.

The Mormon Model Who Writes Poetry on the Side (New York Magazine) (February 9, 2016)
M. Keon Smith, Model How long have you been modeling? Since October. I’d been scouted in New York a bunch of times, but I never wanted to be seen as just an attractive person. I felt frustrated when people asked if I was a model. I’d think, Am I just my face? Do I not have a personality? I always wanted to be a Renaissance man: My dream in high school was to join the Peace Corps, discover random plants in Africa, and create a clothing line based off them.

February 8, 2016

LDS missionaries safe in Taiwan after earthquake (Deseret News - Utah) (February 8, 2016)
All Mormon missionaries serving in Taiwan are safe after a 6.4-magnitude earthquake struck the country, a mission president reported to parents in an email Friday.

Leaders Speak of Strengthening Relationships, Learning Stories during RootsTech Family Day (Church News) (February 8, 2016)
Relationships are important in God’s plan, Brother Stephen W. Owen, Young Men general president, taught during the family session of Family Discovery Day at RootsTech on February 6.

Elder Renlund: Real Power in Combining Family History with Temple (Church News) (February 8, 2016)
Sharing a story about his grandmother’s spiritual course through life, Elder Dale G. Renlund of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles explained the power of combining family history with the blessings of the temple. “It is not just randomly mixing two things together, but the one helps direct the other,” he said.

Church Announces New Tools to Help with Work of Salvation (Church News) (February 8, 2016)
One word—salvation—is the key, “the bottom line” to missionary, family history, and temple work, Elder Allan F. Packer, General Authority Seventy, said February 6, at the family history leadership session at RootsTech 2016.

Elder Andersen: Feast from Book of Mormon’s “Heavenly Banquet” (Church News) (February 8, 2016)
Declaring the Book of Mormon to be “like an exquisite banquet table, one thousand feet long, covered with the most desirable food, fruit, and flowers from across the world,” Elder Neil L. Andersen addressed thousands of young adults January 31.

Elder Oaks to speak at Johns Hopkins on international religious liberty (Deseret News - Utah) (February 8, 2016)
Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will speak about international religious liberty on Tuesday at Johns Hopkins University.

Seven Cities Announced for 2016 Mormon Tabernacle Choir European Tour (LDS Newsroom) (February 8, 2016)
Locations have been announced for the 2016 Mormon Tabernacle Choir European tour. The choir and its companion ensemble, the Orchestra at Temple Square, will visit seven cities in Europe this summer — their first visit to Europe in 18 years. The tour will include stops in Berlin, Nuremberg, Vienna, Zurich, Frankfurt, Brussels, and Rotterdam from June 27 through July 16, 2016, and will include over 320 voices from the world-renowned choir and members of the Orchestra at Temple Square.

Tickets Go on Sale for 2016 Mormon Tabernacle Choir European Tour (Church News) (February 8, 2016)
Tickets are on now on sale for the highly-anticipated 2016 Mormon Tabernacle Choir European tour. The Choir and its companion ensemble, Orchestra at Temple Square, will visit seven cities in Europe this summer—their first visit to Europe in 18 years. The tour will include stops in Berlin, Nuremberg, Vienna, Zurich, Frankfurt, Brussels, and Rotterdam from June 27 through July 16, 2016, and will include over 320 voices from the world-renowned choir and members of the Orchestra at Temple Square.

New Church History Database Lists Early Missionaries from 1830–1930 (Church News) (February 8, 2016)
Church Historian Elder Steven E. Snow announced the release of a new database titled “Early Mormon Missionaries” at the RootsTech family history event today. The database features information about all known full-time proselytizing missionaries serving between 1830 and 1930. In addition to basic information such as names, dates of service, and mission locations, it includes links to thousands of documents—journals, letters, newspaper articles, photographs, and more—that will help researchers better understand the experience of early missionaries for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Primary Leaders Continue to Carry Legacy of Service (Church News) (February 8, 2016)
In 1878, Aurelia Spencer Rogers, a 44-year-old mother, was worried about the behavior of the boys in her neighborhood “who ran freely through the town day and night.” With the approval of President John Taylor and after receiving a calling from her bishop, Sister Rogers began planning the first Primary—which would be for girls as well as boys.

Women hired by LDS Church History Department making huge strides in Mormon women's history (Deseret News - Utah) (February 8, 2016)
Kate Holbrook and Jenny Reeder applied for the same job in 2011. This was not just any old job, either. This one was distinctive, a unicorn in their field. In fact, it was unprecedented in Mormon history. The LDS Church History Department had posted a job opening for an official position specializing in women's history.

Riverton sees 550-acre LDS Church property plan as a 'once-in-a-lifetime' development (Deseret News - Utah) (February 8, 2016)
Riverton leaders say opportunity and desire are leading to what will become the largest residential and commercial development in the city's history. It’s an agreement that will draw homes, jobs and businesses on such a large scale, it's expected to have not only a major impact on Riverton, but also on south Salt Lake County.

LDS Church donates additional $5 million to refugee crisis; President Uchtdorf shares refugee experience (Deseret News - Utah) (February 8, 2016)
In an article released Thursday by Mormon Newsroom, President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, second counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, shared experiences from his childhood. As a child, President Uchtdorf was a refugee.

BYU Men's Volleyball: Hatch quietly among best blockers in Cougar history (Daily Herald - Utah) (February 8, 2016)
BYU senior middle blocker Michael Hatch was once cut from the team. After he returned from an LDS mission and made the team as a walk-on, the first time the 6-foot-8 middle blocker was called upon to play, his thought was, “Me? Are you sure?”

February 5, 2016

Dieter F. Uchtdorf of Church’s First Presidency Recounts Childhood Refugee Ordeal (LDS Newsroom) (February 5, 2016)
World leaders met Thursday in London with the United Nations Refugee Agency to find solutions to the growing refugee crisis in Europe. Their goal is to create long-term work and education opportunities for the millions now in refugee camps.

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf and Gail Halvorsen: Fellow aviators' lives intersect (LDS Church News) (February 5, 2016)
When he was 8 years old, Dieter F. Uchtdorf looked up at planes flying in and out of Berlin. He and his sister had traveled there from their home in Zwickau for an LDS youth conference in 1949. The planes were part of the Berlin Airlift. Years later, he learned that one of the airlift’s pilots was a fellow Latter-day Saint, Gail Halvorsen, the renowned “Candy Bomber”.

The Book of Mormon: 'The Keystone of Your Faith' (LDS Church News) (February 5, 2016)
Declaring the Book of Mormon to be “like an exquisite banquet table, one thousand feet long, covered with the most desirable food, fruit and flowers from across the world,” Elder Neil L. Andersen addressed thousands of young adults here Sunday evening, Jan. 31.

Elder Marcus B. Nash at BYU campus devotional: 'Guided safely home' (LDS Church News) (February 5, 2016)
Understanding the plan of salvation is crucial to navigating many of the social issues facing Church members today, Elder Marcus B. Nash, General Authority Seventy, taught during a campus devotional at Brigham Young University on Feb. 2.

Illinois woman can keep rare Book of Mormon despite bankruptcy, court rules (St. Louis Post-Dispatch - Missouri) (February 5, 2016)
A woman from Southern Illinois can keep a rare 1830 Book of Mormon worth tens of thousands of dollars despite filing for bankruptcy, a federal appeals court in Chicago said Thursday.

TV Host Runs into Missionaries During 'Only Say Yes' Experiment (LDS Living) (February 5, 2016)
In a new Flemish TV show entitled Ja Jan, a TV host commits to say "yes" to every question asked of him for 60 days. Including when he ran into two Mormon missionaries. Episode 4 of the show, which aired on January 26th, follows Jan as he flips a coin leaving his house to determine the direction he'll walk that day. As luck would have it, he drops the coin, which then rolls to a stop on tails--directing him to walk forward instead of to the right.

February 4, 2016

President Obama denounces anti-Muslim bias, mentions anti-Mormon history (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (February 4, 2016)
President Barack Obama on Wednesday noted that Mormons, too, have faced persecution like Muslims and other faiths as he made his first visit to a U.S. mosque and pleaded for tolerance toward all religions.

World's Largest Family History Event Held in Utah (LDS Newsroom Blog) (February 4, 2016)
Thousands of family history enthusiasts from the United States and overseas are gathering in Salt Lake City this week for RootsTech, the world’s largest family history event. The three-day conference is open to the public and runs February 4-6, 2016, at the Salt Palace Convention Center.

RootsTech keynote speaker Doris Kearns Goodwin knows presidents, baseball and the power of stories (Deseret News - Utah) (February 4, 2016)
Doris Kearns Goodwin knows her U.S. presidents. The prominent presidential historian has authored six best-selling books featuring famous names such as Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, the Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys. She won a Pulitzer Prize for her book delving into the lives of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt. At age 24, Goodwin also served as an assistant to President Lyndon B. Johnson in his final year in the White House and helped him with his memoirs.

RootsTech 2016 a 25,000-member 'studio audience' (Deseret News - Utah) (February 4, 2016)
RootsTech 2016, the largest family history event in the world, got underway Wednesday, drawing the vanguard of an expected 25,000 registered attendees from all 50 states and 40 countries who will gather at the Salt Palace Convention Center each day through Saturday.

The Virtuous Cycle of Dialogue (LDS Newsroom) (February 4, 2016)
In a January 13, 2016, segment of HuffPost Live, entertainer Lindsey Stirling describes her faith as a "staple of my life that's helped me maintain who I am as everything else changes." She then notes how fans react to learning she's a Latter-day Saint.

'A unique insight': Jermaine Sullivan shares conversion, experiences since 'Meet the Mormons' release (Deseret News - Utah) (February 4, 2016)
Jermaine Sullivan maintains that when it came to participating as one of the members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints featured in the documentary "Meet the Mormons," any number of individuals, families or even bishops could have been chosen. Even so, he's grateful to have been among those who were selected.

Mormon feminists score small gains — in word, in song, in lessons, and, they hope, in life (Salt Lake Tribune - Utah) (February 4, 2016)
Mormon feminists are celebrating a few more small steps toward gender equality in their Utah-based faith. February's edition of the Friend, the LDS Church's official magazine for children, features an article titled "Savannah the Engineer" about a young girl who enters — and whose team wins — a battery-powered-car-designing contest. The issue also highlights lots of ethnically diverse faces and stories.

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