Monday, October 29, 2012

Of Temples & Chapels

Ever wondered about the difference between a Mormon chapel and temple?

The folks at LDS Public Affairs decided to explain a few of them, in all their infographic-loving ways.

The graphic is a bit outdated, as the church recently dedicated its 140th active temple in Calgary, Canada. But it still makes good on several key points of doctrine.

One of the more striking numbers on the infographic is that 83 percent of members of the church live within 200 miles of a temple. This is likely due to the recent surge in temple construction, begun by the late Pres. Gordon B. Hinckley and continued with the living Prophet and President of the church, Thomas S. Monson.

Calgary Temple Dedication

Pres. Thomas S. Monson dedicated the 140th temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints over the weekend. This time, he dedicated the Canada Calgary Temple in three sessions on Oct. 28, 2012.
The event had to be extra special for Pres. Monson, who spent a portion of his young married life as a mission president in the country. The 33,000-square foot edifice is the eighth temple in Canada, and third in the province of Alberta.
Regardless of personal connection, though, it represents an opportunity for a burgeoning community of Latter-day Saints to attend the temple on a regular basis, effecting ordinances for their deceased ancestors.
The temple is the House of God, and each one represents a beacon that transcends our world for the next life. If you have one in your area, go to it. You will be blessed.

LDS Church Responds: Hurricane Sandy

Courtesy of LDS Public Affairs (
For those who don't know, I recently moved to the East Coast to get a master's degree at a university in New York. I've only lived here for four months, and I'm now experiencing my first hurricane — the dreaded "frankenstorm" Hurricane Sandy.

Leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released a statement on their preparations for dealing with the potentially catastrophic weather phenomenon.

I've seen the following portion of the statement in my time in this area's young single adult branch:

Local Church leaders along the eastern coast of the United States have made preparations for the storm.  Church representatives are in contact with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), The American Red Cross, Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD) and other relief agencies to coordinate response efforts.The Church stands ready to assist affected communities. Emergency Response resources have been pre-positioned in Bishops Storehouses in the area.
If you want to follow the situation from a dedicated "Weather Nerd," check out Brendan Loy's blog at PJ Media. He does great work on this, and other natural disasters.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Flooding the Interwebs

Pres. Ezra Taft Benson gave a talk in 1998 on Flooding the Earth with the Book of Mormon.

The basic premise of his sermon was that the Book of Mormon is the "most correct book of any on the Earth," and it should be used as the Latter-day Saint's greatest weapon in furthering the kingdom of God. He challenged members to use the Book of Mormon in their gospel sharing, and trust in its power to help others come to Christ.

Well, the church just made it easier.

Church developers have created a mobile app of the Book of Mormon, but without the footnotes, superfluous links and other works of scripture available in the popular Gospel Library app. The new app is available on iTunes, the Google Play store, and the Windows marketplace.

Still no word on a Blackberry app. But you can always try this format.

Ft. Collins (Colo.) Temple Art

The LDS Church has released renderings for the Ft. Collins, Colo., temple.

Pres. Thomas S. Monson announced the temple at the church's April 2011 General Conference. It is the second temple in Colorado (Denver, 1986)

Christmas Concert Announced

It's not even Halloween, but the LDS Church has already announced its Christmas Concert.

One of the more iconic journalists of our day, NBC's Tom Brokaw, will team up with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir for a three-day concert, as well as a special mini-broadcast on Sunday, Dec. 16.

The annual Christmas Concert is a great way to help bring the spirit of Christmas into your home. If you are in Utah, you can also attend any day's session of the concert, Dec. 13-15 at the Conference Center in Salt Lake City.

Along with Brokaw, Tony Award-winning tenor Alfie Boe -- best known for his role as Jean Valjean in London's production of Les Miserables -- will also join the choir for several musical numbers.

Photos courtesy of

Post-Conference Edition

It's been a couple of weeks since General Conference, and I'm still coming down from Cloud 9.

The blessing of listening to living Prophets, seers and revelators cannot be understated. The words of the prophets aren't just symbols on a page, written by a man who lived and die hundreds (or thousands) of years ago. Let us take advantage of the wisdom and advice we received from heaven on the first weekend of October.

Below is a wordle created by the guys at to encapsulate the entire five-session conference. Notice the words that stand out. Here is further evidence that Mormons are Christians.

Let us remember to always talk of Christ, write of Christ, even preach of Christ, "that our children may know to what source they may look for the remission of their sins."

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Pres. Monson drops the hammer

After only one round of brief, opening remarks by Pres. Thomas S. Monson, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has already dropped a massive bombshell.

Young men who have graduated from high school may now enter missionary service at age 18. Young women, similarly, will only have to wait until age 19.

Within seconds of the announcement, LDS Church Public Affairs released a news item on their website. 

What kinds of blessings could this lead to missionary work in today's age? What challenges will 18-year-old men and 19-year-old women face upon entering the mission field?

It's Back

The semiannual conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is finally here. It's a time when Mormons gather together, both in person and via television, radio and Internet broadcasts, to listen to the words of leaders, our Prophets, Seers and Revelators.

But you know what the best part is? There's nothing secret about it. In fact, with the age of Internet streaming, the church has made it easier than ever for anyone to listen and participate in the proceedings. You can view the broadcast by going to, or finding the appropriate channel on's live broadcast page.

Follow the conference all weekend on Twitter and Google+, as well, using the hashtag #LDSConf. It's a great way to see what other Mormons and participants are liking about the weekend.

So pull up a chair, sit back and enjoy the weekend. Because it's finally upon us.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

A Simple Invitation

Have you been invited to General Conference yet?

Don't worry; you don't have to trek to Salt Lake City, and wait for several hours in the cold Utah air of October. All you have to do is pull up the broadcast on BYUtv or, and listen to the Prophets and Apostles speak in our day.

Reserve your spot now. Space isn't limited, but it's the polite thing to do.

Courtesy LDS Church PA

October is for Sharing

General Conference is a great time to share the Gospel. Whether it's inviting a neighbor to your house to watch a session, helping the missionaries shuttle investigators to the chapel, or sharing links to the online broadcast on Facebook, Twitter and other social networks, we can all do something.

Sharing the gospel now is easier than it has ever been before.

To facilitate this message-sharing in a non-confrontational manner, the LDS church has put out a website to teach members of all easy how to do it.

Check out it here for some tips, tricks and helpful preparations in this excellent time of year.

Courtesy of

Monday, October 1, 2012

Come Listen to a Prophet's Voice

In the week leading up to General Conference, I like to publish something about the LDS church's semiannual meetings each day.

To start us off, here's a promotional video made by the church's public affairs staff. If you want to know where you can see and hear Prophets, Seers and Revelators in your area, check out, or visit a local meetinghouse.

LDS General Conference is a special time of year, and for many Mormons around the world, it represents a true transition into the Fall season (or Spring, as in the April conference). I urge you to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity; you will be blessed for it.