News of the Church

By Larry Hiller

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    Six General Authorities to Reside outside the United States

    The First Presidency has announced that six General Authorities will be assigned to reside and function in countries outside the United States and Canada.

    The six Assistants to the Council of the Twelve will reside indefinitely in the countries to which they are assigned and supervise all stake and mission activities in those areas. The assignments are effective in midsummer.

    The Assistants to the Twelve and their areas are:

    Elder Bernard P. Brockbank, Great Britain, Western Europe, and South Africa.

    Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin, Germany and Central Europe.

    Elder J. Thomas Fyans, Mexico and Central America.

    Elder James E. Faust, South America.

    Elder Adney Y. Komatsu, Japan and Far East.

    Elder Robert L. Simpson, Pacific and Polynesian Islands.

    Elder W. Grant Bangerter, also an Assistant to the Council of the Twelve, will succeed Elder Brockbank as president of the International Mission of the Church, which serves about 1,400 members outside regular stakes and missions. This mission has headquarters in Salt Lake City and was organized to maintain better contact with members living in comparatively isolated parts of the world.

    The First Presidency cited worldwide growth as part of the reason why these assignments are necessary. The Church has more than tripled in the past 25 years, with total membership approaching 3.5 million. Much of this growth is outside the United States, which necessitates leadership in these other areas. The resident Assistants to the Twelve will intensify training of local priesthood leadership so that member and missionary programs may be more effective.

    This growth of the Church is reflected in the organization of 16 new stakes from the beginning of 1975 up to mid-April, at which time there were 691 stakes in the church: 580 in the United States; 13 in Canada; 28 in Australia, New Zealand and the Polynesian Islands; 21 in South America; 19 in Great Britain and South Africa; 16 in Mexico and Central America; 9 in Europe; and 5 in the Far East. In addition, 16 new missions will begin functioning this July, bringing the total number of missions to 129.

    The Brethren who have received the new assignments all have extensive Church background and experience in the areas where they will be serving. Elder Brockbank has been president of the North British and Scottish-Irish Missions and also served a mission in Great Britain. He has been managing director of the Mormon Pavilions at several world fairs.

    Elder Wirthlin, who was sustained as an Assistant during the April general conference of this year, served as a missionary in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, where he will now serve again.

    Elder Fyans has been managing director of the Internal Communications Department of the Church. He was mission president in the Uruguay-Paraguay Mission and has returned to South America often as a Regional Representative. He has also been coordinator of area conferences.

    Elder Faust has been managing director of the Melchizedek Priesthood Mutual Interest Association and served a mission to Brazil. He has been prominent in Utah civic and business activities.

    Another of the new Assistants is Elder Adney Yoshio Komatsu. He was the first Oriental to be called as a General Authority and also the first to be called as a Regional Representative. He has also been president of the Northern Far East Mission.

    Elder Simpson is now serving as president of the England London Mission. He has been president of the New Zealand Mission and has also served there as a missionary.

    The South American Area General Conferences

    The basic facts of the recent area general conferences in South America can be told in just a few sentences. On February 28 and March 1 and 2, a conference was held in Sao Paulo for members of the Church in Brazil. And on March 7, 8, and 9, a conference for the members in Argentina, Chile, Paraguay, and Uruguay took place in Buenos Aires. More than 5,000 attended the sessions in Sao Paulo, and over 10,000 attended in Buenos Aires.

    The format for both conferences was the same. On Friday evening the members presented a program of songs and dances that depicted local cultures. General sessions were conducted on Saturday and Sunday. Special sessions for parents and youth were held on Saturday night, and on Sunday morning there was a special session for priesthood leaders.

    President Spencer W. Kimball led the delegation of General Authorities, accompanied by President N. Eldon Tanner, first counselor in the First Presidency. Elder Mark E. Petersen, Elder Delbert L. Stapley, and Elder L. Tom Perry represented the Council of the Twelve. The Assistants to the Council of the Twelve were represented by Elder ElRay L. Christiansen, Elder Franklin D. Richards, Elder James E. Faust (in Brazil only), and Elder J. Thomas Fyans. Elder A. Theodore Tuttle, Elder Hartman Rector, Jr., and Elder Rex D. Pinegar represented the First Council of the Seventy.

    Those, then, are the basic facts of the area conferences. But what about the color, the spirit, the excitement? What impact did the conferences have on those who participated?

    The members who were interviewed about the conferences seemed to list the same three things as having impressed them most. “Seeing and hearing the prophet speak was the best part,” said some. Others claimed, “It was the news about the temple.” Still others added their appreciation for the wonderful choirs that furnished the music.

    Those who had looked forward to the conference for months had focused on the thought that the prophet of the Lord would be at the conference. And so they worked, sacrificed, and helped each other in order to be able to attend. Choir members spent many hours in rehearsal, often travelling long distances. Those who participated in the Friday evening cultural programs also travelled long distances and worked many hours at perfecting their presentations. They wanted to be at their best for the prophet and the General Authorities who accompanied him.

    Then, when President Kimball and the others arrived, the Saints at the conference received even more than many of them had dared hope for. In his opening remarks at Sao Paulo, even before the prayer was announced, President Kimball said: “We are very happy to announce to you and all the world, that subject to the conditions that exist, and your total cooperation, we will build the 17th temple of the Lord in South America. And it will be located in Sao Paulo, Brazil.”

    Those who live far from where a temple is located will have some idea of how much impact this announcement had. One beautiful young family from Uruguay said, “It would have taken us at least ten years to save enough money to go to one of the temples in North America.” But now that a temple is to be built in South America, they can enjoy the blessings of the temple in just a few years. Some seemed to have difficulty in expressing their feelings about the temple. “Wonderful!” was all they could say, as though they were still stunned by the news. Their moist eyes indicated that a more comprehensive answer was in their hearts.

    From beginning to end the conferences were great uplifting and unifying experiences. The Friday evening cultural programs, for example, did much to stimulate a feeling of unity among members who came from regions and countries hundreds of miles apart. Each group seemed to gain more appreciation for the others’ unique talents and cultural heritage.

    An interesting outgrowth of the rehearsals for the choirs and cultural presentations was that young people were able to make new acquaintances with youth from other branches. As a result there were some deep friendships that developed, and there were even a few engagements.

    The youth in South America make up a large part of the Church population, and their contribution to the spirit of the conferences was great. In addition to their performances in the cultural programs, they provided some beautiful choirs. In Sao Paulo, for example, a seminary and institute chorus of over 1,200 voices provided the music for the Sunday morning session. Dressed in pastel shirts and dresses, they filled the entire center section of the conference hall. And when the session had ended, they remained in their places and began to sing again. Song after song, their enthusiasm built as they stood looking up into the faces of the General Authorities on the stand. Many, both in the chorus and on the stand, had tears in their eyes.

    It was such choruses, among other things, that made a strong impression on nonmember observers of the conferences. In Brazil, for example, the conference was featured on the nation’s most popular television news program—one reaching an audience of millions. The camera crews and reporters were astonished. “Where have you been keeping these choirs?” they asked. Of course, the answer was that the choirs as such had not existed until the people arrived in Sao Paulo.

    Other observers were impressed by the behavior of the members attending the meetings. The manager of the Anhembi Convention Center in Sao Paulo remarked that this was the cleanest, best-organized group ever to use the facility. A cab driver who had been retained by one of the news media representatives had to remain outside the center for hours at a time. He had ample opportunity to observe the conference crowds. On the last day of the conference he couldn’t contain his curiosity any longer. “Where do these people come from?” he wanted to know. “I haven’t seen any shoving or heard any arguing—just expressions of love.”

    Because the conference proceedings in Sao Paulo were carried to other parts of the building by closed circuit television, it was necessary to have a crew of technicians on the scene. Early in the conference they continued talking during the prayers. But during the last session as the final prayer was being said, someone walked into the control room and began to talk. The chief technician, who was not a Latter-day Saint, turned and said: “Shhh! They’re praying.”

    The Saints in Buenos Aires made a similar impression on nonmember observers. The manager of the facility where the conference was held remarked about the cleanliness and orderliness of the group. And one of the policemen on duty outside the building made similar observations.

    Observers of the conferences might have been even more astonished if they had known of the personal sacrifices some had to make in order to attend. One mission president estimated that it cost some of his members as much as three months’ wages to get to the conference. Many took extra jobs or participated in fund-raising projects in order to finance the trip.

    Even travelling to the conference sites was not easy for some. Bus rides of more than 30 hours were common. One man from Chile travelled 65 hours to reach Buenos Aires.

    Interestingly enough, people who were asked about sacrifice shrugged it off. “No,” they would say, “it hasn’t been easy for many to come, but I wouldn’t call it a sacrifice.” That, perhaps, is the key to the spirit of the conferences. It wasn’t a sacrifice; because, after all, they were going to hear the Lord’s servants. And their expectations were fulfilled as they sat listening to inspired counsel at the feet of the prophet and the other General Authorities.

    They heard President Kimball remind them of the challenge that Joshua gave the Children of Israel: “… choose you this day whom ye will serve.” (Josh. 24:15.) He reminded them again of the announced temple and encouraged them to sacrifice for it. “We hope you will receive this temple as a new sacrifice, for we remember that ‘Sacrifice brings forth the blessings of heaven.’ (“Praise to the Man,” Hymns No. 147.) Of all the blessings that come to you, nothing is greater than the blessings that come to you by having fathers and mothers sealed to each other for time and eternity, and having all the children sealed to them so that after death families go on and on becoming like God and growing in righteousness and perfection together.”

    Elder Mark E. Petersen spoke of the commandment, “Take my yoke upon you.” (Matt. 11:29.) “The act of taking his yoke upon us is the most serious and solemn thing we can do in life. If we take his yoke upon us, we must be sincere. We must be honest with the Lord. Although we live in the world, we cannot allow the sins and practices of the world to overcome us.”

    Those who attended the priesthood leadership session in Buenos Aires heard Elder Franklin D. Richards tell how to develop one’s capabilities as a priesthood leader. He mentioned the effective use of time: “We must learn to simplify our lives and work patterns. We can accomplish this by doing the most important things first and not trying to do more than we can do well.”

    At that same priesthood session, Elder Delbert L. Stapley spoke of the nature of the priesthood, saying, “There is a difference between the authority of the priesthood and the power of the priesthood. … A man may have the priesthood conferred upon him, but through inactivity, disobedience, and violating the commandments of God he will not gain power in the priesthood. The priesthood may lie dormant in an individual, the power of it never realized whereby miracles can be performed. Such an inactive person denies himself personal benefits, as well as denying others who could be uplifted and blessed had he been faithful.”

    Special counsel was also given to those who attended the sessions for parents and for youth. President Kimball warned of forces that are trying to weaken the family unit. He reminded parents of the temptations that face modern youth. “The solution,” he reminded, “lies in keeping the commandments and attending to family duties.” He said that the Lord’s program is to “return the father to his rightful place at the head of the family, to bring the mother home from social life and employment, the children from near-total fun and frolic. The home teaching program, with its crowning activity, the family home evening, will neutralize the ill effects only if the people will apply the remedy.”

    President Kimball went on to remind them of the fall of past civilizations: “Had every father in Babylon, assisted by the mother, taught and trained little ones in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, would that great city ever have been covered with sand and its corruption buried in the earth, its springs dried up, its temples toppled? Would drunken revelry have lulled them to sleep in unawareness of their danger? Would palms and willows wither, and would lands be dried and desolate? Would Babylon have become a hiss and a byword?”

    At the Sao Paulo conference Elder Rex D. Pinegar spoke of parents and prayer: “How grateful I am for the faithful prayers of my parents. Just how often their prayers have been the means of my salvation I may never know. I do know, however, that children need the blessings that come through the prayers of their parents.

    “Children need to pray for their parents, for each other, for the leaders of the Church, and for the Lord to bless the leaders of the land with righteous desires. Children should learn prayers of gratitude. … Children should pray for strength and wisdom to overcome the personal challenges they face. … Children must also be taught to live as they pray so they will be worthy to receive the blessings they seek.”

    In their meetings the youth heard the General Authorities speak with love and plainness. They were reminded to keep themselves clean and pure. They were advised to heed their parents and their priesthood leaders. And they were told of their missionary responsibilities.

    President Kimball’s address to the youth in Buenos Aires was especially powerful with regard to missionary work. He spoke of all of the problems that beset men in the world because they do not know the truth. “If only we could tell this whole world that they will be happier, they will be less hungry, they will be better taken care of if they join the Church.

    “I am looking for the day when we will have 5,000 missionaries from South America. There are more than 5,000 boys in South America. Why aren’t they in the mission field? I think they didn’t understand. They thought it was something you could just choose to do or choose not to do.

    “But a mission is like paying tithing. Of course, you don’t have to pay tithing, but everybody who loves the Lord is going to get the tithing habit.”

    President Kimball told the story of a young college student who fell in love with a very beautiful young woman. When he proposed marriage she answered, “I’d like you to be my husband, but, where did you fill your mission?” When he explained that he had decided to get an education instead, she replied, “Well, maybe we’d better wait.”

    He was in one of the next missionary groups going to Australia.

    President Kimball then went on: “Do you young women realize how much power you have? If there were an army here telling them they had to go, it wouldn’t be as powerful as you would be. When one of these boys falls in love with you, you have the controls. You can just say what you want to say, but you could say, ‘Oh, let’s wait until you get back from your mission.’”

    What effect did such addresses have on the youth who attended the conference? “I am determined to be more of a missionary,” one 17-year-old girl reported. “And I am going to encourage my younger brothers to go on missions.”

    Another example of the effect on the youth was cited by President Puerta of the Sao Paulo West Stake. Prior to the conference, he had interviewed a young man about going on a mission. A third-year engineering student, the young man had expressed doubts about interrupting his schooling, because it would be extremely difficult for him to get back into school following his mission. He said he would give his answer about the mission after the area conference. When the last session was over, he sought out his stake president and, with tears in his eyes, said he would love to go on a mission.

    It is difficult to say how many others were influenced in a similar way, but the enthusiasm of the young people at the conferences could be seen in their eyes and in their smiles. “I feel as if my heart has been cleansed,” said one. Another had a note of awe in his voice as he said, “I shook the prophet’s hand.”

    For many of the General Authorities and Regional Representatives of the Council of the Twelve who attended, the conferences were an opportunity to renew old acquaintances and to see the fruits of seeds planted in years past. They had been active in South America over the years as missionaries, mission presidents, and supervisors of missions. They had taught, counselled, and called to positions of leadership many of the Saints in attendance. They had watched Church units grow, and they had watched people grow. Now they saw thousands of dedicated Saints gather in two great area conferences. They saw the numerous dedicated young people, many of them second- and third-generation members.

    Many of the members there had had their lives touched by the Brethren in very personal ways. Two incidents at the Buenos Aires conference, both involving President Kimball will illustrate.

    Speaking at the session for parents, President Miguel Avila, first counselor in the Buenos Aires Argentina East Stake, told how his wife had been ill about ten years ago. She had been given many tests and had undergone surgery, and still her condition did not improve. The couple had remained childless for seven years, and they were faced with the possibilities of more surgery and of remaining childless.

    Then one evening Brother Avila had a dream in which one of the current apostles told him not to worry. An important calling would come to him, and he and his wife would be blessed with a child. Eight months later the Buenos Aires Stake was organized, and President Kimball—then a member of the Council of the Twelve—ordained Brother Avila a bishop. It was President Kimball he had seen in the dream. Within two weeks Sister Avila’s health had improved and subsequently they were blessed with a son.

    In another instance, a woman at the conference approached Allen Litster, one of the Regional Representatives, and asked if he would arrange for her to talk to President Kimball. She said that she had lost ten children before President Kimball had given her a blessing. Then, indicating the attractive teenage girl beside her, she said, “My daughter would like to thank President Kimball.”

    Over the years, thousands of missionaries have labored in South America, planting seeds of faith. The thousands of Saints who attended the area conferences were part of the fruits of their labors. And during the conferences, more seeds were planted that will bear fruit in the years to come. Just one member, his heart touched by the counsel of the Brethren, could bring scores of others into the Church. One young man, inspired to serve as a missionary, may affect hundreds of lives for good. And how many parents and future parents received counsel that will enable them to raise future generations of leaders?

    The complete story of the area conferences cannot be written yet, because the most important part of the story is what has taken place in the hearts of those who attended. But perhaps the future can be read in part in the shining faces of the thousands of fine young people who were there. If so, great things will come out of the conferences that were held in Sao Paulo from February 28 through March 2 and in Buenos Aires from March 7 through March 9.

    [photo] President Spencer W. Kimball speaks to Saints in Sao Paulo.

    [photo] Elder J. Thomas Fyans, Assistant to the Council of the Twelve, addresses Buenos Aires area conference.

    [photos] Youth chorus at Sao Paulo area conference.

    Brazil Temple Fund Established

    The First Presidency has announced the establishment of a fund through which persons outside of South America may contribute to the Sao Paulo Brazil Temple.

    Former missionaries or others desiring to contribute to this fund should make checks payable to the Corporation of the President with a notation that it is for the temple. Contributions should be sent to the Financial Department of the Church, 50 East North Temple, Salt Lake City, Utah 84150.

    President Kimball Rededicates Arizona Temple

    President Spencer W. Kimball rededicated the Arizona Temple at Mesa April 15 and 16, noting in his rededicatory address that for the original dedication in 1927 he sang on the roof of the temple with the St. Joseph Stake Choir:

    The rededication service was repeated seven times in the two days, each time to a capacity crowd of 4,600 in the temple, visitors center, and nearby tri-stake center. All members of the Council of the Twelve were in attendance and spoke except Elder Mark E. Petersen, whose wife passed away on April 15. Several other General Authorities were also present. In addition, temple president C. Bryant Whiting spoke, as well as Emil B. Fetzer, Church architect, and Fred A. Baker, director of the Church Building Department.

    A year of extensive remodeling preceded the rededication. During public tours conducted just a few weeks before the services, an estimated 205,000 persons toured the temple.

    Reviewing the history of the temple, President Kimball noted that it had been 48 years since President Heber J. Grant first dedicated it. He reviewed the great changes that have come since then, recalling the difficulty in traveling to that original service. He said he traveled in a car from Gila Valley to Mesa on primitive roads and that all the passengers got out and pushed the car up steep inclines. At that time President Kimball was clerk of the St. Joseph Stake.

    President Kimball also spoke of the significance of temples, noting that the newly announced Brazil Temple will bring to 17 the number operated by the Church. He reminded the Saints that prophets have said the day will come when hundreds of temples will be found throughout the world. He urged all members to live worthily, according to the standards of the Church, to have family prayer and family home evening, “and above all, obey the commandments of Jesus Christ.”

    [photo] Arizona Temple.

    President Kimball Interviewed for Australian Radio

    The Australian Broadcasting Commission recently interviewed President Spencer W. Kimball, via transcontinental telephone lines, for a radio broadcast. Also participating in the interview was President Ian G. Mackay of the Sydney Australia Greenwich Stake. President Kimball was in the Bonneville International Corporation studios in Salt Lake City for the interview. Two days later it was used as part of a half-hour program on the Church aired over 70 radio stations across Australia.

    [photo] President Spencer W. Kimball with Sydney Australia Greenwich Stake President Ian G. Mackay during telephone interview.

    New York Visitors Center Dedicated

    President Spencer W. Kimball dedicated the new complex of Church buildings, including a visitors center, on Lincoln Square in New York City May 25, and the center was open to the public beginning the following day.

    The complex includes a stake center, facilities for three wards, a genealogical branch library, and offices of the New York New York City Mission, as well as the visitors center.

    The new center features many innovative and interesting displays to explain principles and programs of the Church to nonmembers. It is divided into four basic segments, including a reception area where tours begin, an animated diorama featuring talking mannequins, a multimedia theater presentation, and a “learning center” where visitors may select films on various facets of the Church.

    Newly called director of the center is James A. Wilson of Murray Hill, New Jersey, who recently retired from the overseas operations division of General Motors.

    [photo] This diorama built for the New York visitors center portrays a family learning of the Book of Mormon at a special family evening on Hill Cumorah.

    LDS Scene

    Mormon Historians Meet

    Three hundred and fifty registrants plus interested visitors had the meetings of the Mormon History Association bulging during its three-day April conference at Brigham Young University.

    The ten-year-old group, consisting of historians and the historically interested from both The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, heard numerous papers and panels, participated in workshops, and enjoyed a presentation of “Liberty Jail,” a drama about Joseph Smith, written by Orson Scott Card and Robert Stoddard of Provo.

    Employees of the Historical Department of the Church garnered two of the three awards given for publications during the last year: Dean Jessee for his book, Letters of Brigham Young to His Sons, and Gordon Irving for his article, “The Law of Adoption,” published in BYU Studies, Spring 1974.

    The Mormon History Association numbers 692 members, 292 of them new this last year. They will meet in St. George, Utah, in 1976, and in Kirtland, Ohio, in 1977.

    New Mission Presidents Announced

    The First Presidency recently announced the callings of three new mission presidents and the transfer of one mission president to a newly formed mission.

    Hendrik Gout of the Netherlands has been called to preside over the Indonesia Djakarta Mission. Von Rawlings Nielsen of Burlingame, California, will preside over the Florida Ft. Lauderdale Mission. George Patrick Lee, a Navajo Indian, will preside over the Arizona Holbrook Mission and his predecessor, Stanley D. Roberts, will be transferred to preside over the New Mexico Albuquerque Mission. President Lee is the first American Indian to serve as a mission president.

    Sister Emma Marr Petersen Dies

    Emma Marr Petersen, wife of Elder Mark E. Petersen of the Council of the Twelve, died April 15 after a lengthy illness. She had suffered a stroke June 13, 1974, and was at the home of a daughter in Salt Lake City.

    Sister Petersen was a noted author and musician. In 1973 she was honored at Ricks College for “unselfish use of talents as a musician and writer.” She served in many ward and stake positions as organist and accompanist, and also in the auxiliaries and as a temple worker.

    Elder and Sister Petersen were married August 30, 1923, in the Salt Lake Temple. She is survived by Elder Petersen, two daughters, and three grandchildren.

    Genealogical Society Reemphasizes Policy

    The Genealogical Society of the Church has announced that requests for copies of index cards from the Temple Index Bureau (TIB) and for copies of family group records can now be filled only when requested by direct-line relatives to the person whose record is sought.

    A direct-line relative is one whose name appears on the person’s pedigree chart, as well as children of those whose names are on the chart.

    This policy is an enforcement of regulations in the Records Submission Manual and is made necessary by increased demands on the society and by a current microfilming project. No request can be processed unless at least the name, year of birth, and state or country of birth are stated on the request form. These forms are number PFGS0073, available from the Church Distribution Center.

    Relief Society Curriculum—A Summer First

    When campus and singles Relief Societies meet this summer, their lessons will be conference talks: the first time the curriculum has been drawn exclusively from the current words of the prophets.

    The text is the May 1974 Ensign. The teacher’s supplement, prepared by the Instructional Development Committee, focuses not on four addresses to be studied, but on four methods of teaching: the informal workshop, working toward scriptural understanding, analyzing the talk itself, and involving the group with such techniques as brainstorming and role-playing. Although certain talks are used as examples of these methods, the responsibility is the teacher’s to find the most relevant talks for her class.

    Copies of the May Ensign are available from Church Magazines, 50 East North Temple, Salt Lake City, Utah 84150, at 50 cents a copy. The teacher’s supplement is available at Church Distribution, 1999 West 1700 South, Salt Lake City, Utah 84104.

    Public Communications Aides Honored

    Church Public Communications aides from the Los Angeles area, Tucker Georgia Stake, and Louisiana Shreveport Mission were honored recently by the Brigham Young University Department of Communications.

    They are Bert D. Lynn, coordinator of the Los Angeles Area Public Communications Council; Donald S. Conkey of Decatur, Georgia, public communications director for Tucker Georgia Stake; and former Louisiana Shreveport Mission president Golden K. Driggs and his former mission public communications director, Michael E. Johnson, now a BYU student.

    Two and a half years ago, public communications aides began working in each stake and mission in the Church to provide the mass media with news of interest about the Church. These aides have also provided Church publications with information from their areas. Brother Lynn’s projects have included the Southern California Dance Festival, which attracted more than 60,000 spectators to the Rose Bowl in Pasadena; a program to spotlight the Los Angeles Temple visitors center, resulting in a doubling of tourist visits; a senior citizens month; and a Good Samaritans award program. As an area coordinator, Brother Lynn is in charge of the entire Los Angeles area.

    Brother Lynn joined the Church in 1966. Professionally, he is responsible for all the advertising and promotional activities of Western Airlines’ international system.

    Brother Conkey was cited for successful placement of television and radio specials and public service programming about the Church on Georgia stations. He assisted in arranging the visit of BYU President Dallin H. Oaks to Atlanta, and also directs a training program for ward and stake public communications aides. Brother Conkey is editor of several trade magazines and author of a book on genealogy.

    President Driggs and Elder Johnson represented many in the Louisiana Shreveport Mission who have worked in public communications. Their successes have included a Family Unity Week, weekly inspirational messages used by 30 newspapers, placement of President Kimball’s Christmas message on 17 television and 114 radio stations, and his Easter message on 27 television and 133 radio stations, and wide publication of stories about the Washington Temple and Pioneer Day.

    Temple Closures Shortened

    The First Presidency has asked temple presidents to limit the summer closing of each temple in the Church to two weeks instead of the usual four weeks.

    The change will be in effect this summer, with the understanding that in rare situations where extensive remodeling is required, “an exception might need to be considered.”

    New temple schedules will be printed to reflect the change.

    Two Sculptures Planned at BYU

    Brigham Young University has announced that two works of sculpture will be added to the campus as part of this year’s centennial class gift.

    “Windows of Heaven,” a 30-foot sculpture of steel and colored glass by artist Frank Riggs, will be placed at the south end of the mall between the Engineering and Technology Building and the Widtsoe Building in August.

    Another work, “The Tree of Wisdom” by artist Frank Nackos, will be located between the Harris Fine Arts Center and the Wilkinson Center.

    “I am pleased that the student body has chosen to enhance the beauty of our campus with these two fine pieces of sculpture,” President Dallin H. Oaks said.

    New Music Handbook Available

    A new edition of the Handbook for Church Music, the basic reference for music in the Church, is now available through the Distribution Center.

    This handbook provides essential information for music advisers, chairmen, auxiliary music personnel, and all priesthood-directed music personnel. This new edition includes the latest directions in the Church music program and answers many questions on organizing music in local units of the Church. These include policy information on congregational singing, choirs, organ and piano, music for stake conferences, instrumental music, and music for youth.

    Handbooks are available on order number PBMU0031 from the General Church Distribution Center, 1999 West 1700 South, Salt Lake City, Utah 84104. They sell for 40 cents each.

    1,800 Attend Adelaide Australia Stake Luau

    Several thousand dollars have gone to the building fund for a stake center and meetinghouse in the Adelaide Australia Stake as the result of a two-day Polynesian luau, attended by 1,800 members and nonmembers.

    The project was headed by Bishop Desmond R. Trudgen of the Modbury Ward. Sister Merekaraka-Tipoki Caesar, a convert of six months and chieftainess of the Ngati-Ka-hungunu tribe of New Zealand, invited some of her family to entertain. The authentic luau feast was prepared under the direction of other Maori members.

    Besides contributing to the building fund, President Allen M. Swan of the Australia Adelaide Mission reported that the event and the publicity surrounding it had a great proselyting effect.

    Member in Tahiti to Head Youth Organization

    President Jean Tefan, second counselor in the Tahiti Papeete Stake presidency, has been elected to a two year-term as president of the Federation des Oeuvres de la Jeunesse de Polynesie Francaise.

    The federation has 6,000 members in Tahiti, all leaders of various service-oriented youth groups.

    President Tefan served a mission in Tahiti, was called to be a bishop at age 23, and is now a counselor in the stake presidency at age 26. He also works as assistant director of the Church primary school in Papeete. He is married and has two daughters.

    Youth Spend Vacation As Missionaries

    Seventeen young members in Tahiti chose to spend their last two-week school vacation working with the full-time missionaries instead of going to the beach. Some traveled as far as a day’s boat ride from their homes to where the missionaries were working. One youth had only been a member for one week before joining the program.

    Elder Jacques Gohier, assistant to the mission president, reported that they did “a fantastic job” and were “even an uplift” for the full-time missionaries. “There are already more applications than can be used for next vacation,” he said. “We ran into just one problem: some of the boys were so excited they were ready to quit high school and leave right then for two years.”

    [photo] Young members in Tahiti do missionary work with full-time elders.