Liahona Children’s Foundation – Humanitarian Service to the Children

Liahona Children’s Foundation – Humanitarian Service to the Children

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a global Church, which according to the latest Church statistics, has 15,082,028 members worldwide and still growing. One of the overarching goals of The Church of Jesus Christ is to fulfill the Lord’s Great Commission to take the message of the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ to the far-reaching corners of the earth. As members go forth to share the “Good News,” they find that a large part of having an effective ministry involves providing humanitarian assistance to those who live under less fortunate circumstances. It is for this reason that the “Lord called his people Zion, because they were of one heart and one mind, and dwelt in righteousness; and there was no poor among them” (Moses 7:18). As members strive to emulate the life of the Savior, they begin to fully understand what it means to “lift up the hands which hang down, and [stable] the feeble knees” (Hebrews 12:12). The Church of Jesus Christ and Humanitarian Aid The... Read the rest of this entry »

Family History: Moving Mountains

Family History: Moving Mountains

I recently had an aha moment. Fascinated by the fact that men have been commanded to keep records for their families, capture proceedings of the Church, and chronicle words of the prophets and the Savior for centuries—back when it was really difficult to molten ore, engrave the messages into metal, and lug around plates of brass or gold—today members of the Church are asked to do the same thing by writing histories for our own families. Yet, rather than engravings on precious metals, we press keys and slide our fingers across screens we hold in the palms of our hands. Libraries of data are literally now at our fingertips. Technological Advances Help Further the Work of Family History Thirty years ago I was involved in discussions about helping Brigham Young University (BYU) disseminate the resources of its library to other campuses all across the world. This was well before the Internet and seemingly an immense challenge. At that time, mountains of technological problems had to be overcome... Read the rest of this entry »

Shield of Faith – Why Mormon Youth Are Happy and Successful

Shield of Faith – Why Mormon Youth Are Happy and Successful

Research and studies show that teens who are active in their religions – in particular, Mormon teens – are less prone to get in trouble, because they live their lives according to gospel principles, which help them to avoid the snares of worldly temptations. As a result, they are also more likely to live healthier, happier lives. Mormon Teens are Living Testimonies of Their Faith In the Oxford book Soul Searching, and its follow-up volume Souls in Transition, sociologist Christian Smith, based on his research about the religious behavior and attitudes of American teenagers, revealed that “although American youth profess belief at a high level (in God, the afterlife, and the Bible), their level of religious practice does not typically match what they say they believe.” Using that research as a foundation, Princeton Theological Seminary professor Kenda Creasy Dean, one of the researchers in the National Study of Youth and Religion, drew some interesting conclusions. In the book Almost... Read the rest of this entry »

Being Grateful in All Things

Being Grateful in All Things

President Thomas S. Monson, the prophet of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (sometimes nicknamed the “Mormon” Church) shared a powerful teaching near the end of a General Conference for Mormons when he said: This has been a remarkable session. In behalf of all who participated thus far in word or music, as the President of the Church, I have chosen simply to say to you at this moment just two words, known as the two most important words in the English language. To Sister Cheryl Lant and her counselors, the choir, the musicians, the speakers, those words are “Thank you.” I believe this man to truly be called of God as the mouthpiece of the Lord Jesus Christ, a servant to God to help lead the inhabitants of this earth to return to live with Heavenly Father. So, when he said that those are the two most important words, I took it most seriously. But why; why is ‘thank you’ the two most important words? Being Grateful in the Moment Have you ever noticed that... Read the rest of this entry »

Protecting Traditional Marriage Based on Beliefs, Not Bigotry

Protecting Traditional Marriage Based on Beliefs, Not Bigotry

The issue of a state’s right to define marriage as between a man and a woman is winding its way through the court system, and it is likely on its way to the U.S. Supreme Court later this year. Proponents of same-sex unions argue that marriage is a “fundamental right.” One justice in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit Court hearing arguments compared the ban on same-sex marriage to laws prohibiting interracial marriage decades ago, asking what is the difference between the two? But there are more important questions that must be answered: Why does it take a man and a woman to create a child? Why has marriage been—from our very first parents—the standard for bringing children into the world? What role does marriage play in society at large? And why does traditional marriage deserve a protected status? These are the relevant questions to answer. Traditional marriage has a foundation thousands and thousands of years in the making. Same-sex marriage is still in the experimental... Read the rest of this entry »

Changing the Atmosphere of Mormon Missions Worldwide

Changing the Atmosphere of Mormon Missions Worldwide

On April 4, 2014, Tad Walsh wrote an article for the Deseret News explaining the new roles that sister missionaries are taking on. Real experiences are shared about how sisters in the Las Vegas, Nevada and in the Provo, Utah missions are implementing these new positions and responsibilities. These new roles include: taking part in the newly created monthly mission leadership council; training elders and sisters in district, zone, and mission meetings; taking on responsibility over the welfare of all of the sister missionaries; and reporting to the mission president or his wife on issues other sisters face. I am a proud advocate of the new responsibilities that the sister missionaries have been given. From what I understand, there were roadblocks that hindered sisters from doing their jobs properly. For instance, from Walsh’s article, Elder Austin Fuller “recalls feeling frustration about the responsibility he had for sister missionaries when he had fewer tools to help them. Elders and... Read the rest of this entry »

Where Two or Three are gathered – The LDS Church in Hong Kong

Where Two or Three are gathered – The LDS Church in Hong Kong

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (often called the “Mormon” Church by the media and others) realize the importance of meeting together to worship the Lord. They also realize that worship is not restricted to Sunday, although that is the usual day of worship in most parts of the world, but they are admonished to not forsake the “assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching” (Hebrews 10:25). The Savior Himself taught, “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them” (Matthew 18:20). And so, there are some places in the world where Church services may be conducted more frequently. The Church of Jesus Christ in Hong Kong, China In Hong Kong, Church meetings are held every day of the week in order to accommodate the domestic helpers who only get one day a week off, and that day may vary from week to week. Melissa Inouye... Read the rest of this entry »

Why I Prepare for Droughts, Zombie Bees and Polar Vortices

Why I Prepare for Droughts, Zombie Bees and Polar Vortices

When His disciples asked how they would recognize the times in which the Savior would return to the earth again, a part of Jesus’ answer was, “For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows” (Matthew 24:7-8). God Has Always Had a Plan for His Children As a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (often inadvertently called the Mormon Church), I believe that we are spirit children of a loving Heavenly Father. Wanting us to become like Him, God prepared a wonderful plan. We would go to an earth, obtain a mortal, physical body, and choose whether or not to accept the Gospel with Jesus Christ as Savior and obey all of God’s laws and commandments. God organized this world for us, and placed Adam and Eve, our first parents, in the Garden of Eden. When Adam and Eve partook of the forbidden fruit, they became subject to earthly physical... Read the rest of this entry »

Why Mormons Are Right about Alcohol

Why Mormons Are Right about Alcohol

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the faith often inadvertently referred to as the Mormon Church) are known for many quirks, perhaps their abstinence from alcohol being the most telling. Ever since 1833, when its health law was received by revelation, Mormons have shied away from alcohol, as well as from coffee, tea, and tobacco. Mormon doctrine calls this health creed the Word of Wisdom, and its contents haven’t changed since the scripture was recorded over 150 years ago. Recent studies have shown that Mormons may be on to something when it comes to alcohol. Turns out, Mormons may just be right about drinking, and governments around the world are starting to realize it.[1] Alcohol Consumption is Increasing–Along with the Consequences Some may argue that negative consequences from alcohol consumption affect primarily the individual drinking, and that no one–especially the government–has the right to interfere with personal choices. But the... Read the rest of this entry »

Local Mormon Leader Receives Award for Gay-Friendly Message

Local Mormon Leader Receives Award for Gay-Friendly Message

In January 2014, Allen Oyler, a local lay leader in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (often inadvertently referred to as the Mormon Church), received an award from the city of Beaverton, Oregon, for his message of love and compassion regarding same-sex relationships. Some may be surprised that a Mormon leader is speaking out for gay rights, but the truth is that this shouldn’t be a surprise, regardless of your faith. The Church of Jesus Christ promotes doctrine on the family that states that marriage is meant to be eternal and is between a man and a woman. Any sexual relationships outside of a heterosexual marriage are considered sinful, but feeling attraction to someone of the same sex is not itself a sin. This doctrine on marriage, family, and sexuality has led many to believe that Mormons are anti-gay and even discriminatory to gays and lesbians. The truth is that Mormons believe that all men and women are children of a loving Heavenly Father and that regardless of sexual... Read the rest of this entry »