Church News and Events

Church History Library and BYU Present Annual Church History Symposium

Contributed By By Lok Yi Chan, Church News and Events

  • 2-3 March 2012
2-3 March 2012

Brigham Young University Religious Studies, together with the Church History Library and BYU’s Department of Church History and Doctrine, will sponsor the annual Church History Symposium on March 2 and 3 in Salt Lake City and Provo, Utah.

For the first time, Brigham Young University and the Church History Library will join forces in sponsoring the annual Church History Symposium, which will be held on Friday and Saturday, March 2 and 3, in Salt Lake City and Provo, Utah.

BYU has been the sole sponsor of the symposium in the past; this year’s event marks a new chapter in the cooperation between the library and BYU in presenting the event.

“We hope that making the symposium available in two places … will expose a large number of people to this important era in Church history,” said Brian Reeves, Church History Department historian. “We are eager to help people connect with our rich historical heritage.”

The Church History Library, BYU’s Department of Church History and Doctrine, and the BYU Religious Studies Center will sponsor the symposium. This year’s conference, “President Joseph F. Smith: Reflections on the Man and His Times,” will focus on the sixth president of the Church, who lived from 1838 to 1918 and lead the Church from 1901 to 1918.

According to Brother Reeves, presentations will highlight areas of President Smith’s life, including his personal relationships, his doctrinal contributions, and initiatives taken during his presidency in education, building construction, and public outreach.

On Friday, March 2, the symposium will be held at the Conference Center Little Theater in Salt Lake City. The afternoon program will run from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., with more than 10 speakers presenting in a variety of sessions. A two-hour dinner break will follow, and then Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles will be the keynote speaker at the evening session, which will begin at 7:00 p.m.

On Saturday, March 3, the symposium will be held at the BYU Harman Conference Center in Provo, Utah, beginning at 8:30 a.m. Multiple sessions featuring more than 15 speakers will be held during this time. Joseph Fielding McConkie, BYU emeritus professor of ancient scripture and the keynote speaker of the day, will speak at 12:10 p.m. He will speak about the doctrinal contributions of President Joseph F. Smith.

Both Elder Ballard and Brother McConkie are great-grandsons of President Smith.

This event is open to the public free of charge; no reservations or registration are required. More information about the symposium, including details of the schedule, speakers, and topics, is available at the BYU Religious Studies Center website.