Cambios en los Setenta y en el Obispado Presidente
Durante la Conferencia General Semestral numero 162, la Primera Presidencia anunció el llamamiento y el sostenimiento de dos nuevos miembros del Primer Quórum de los Setenta y de nuevos consejeros del Obispado Presidente.
Además, dos miembros del Primer Quórum de los Setenta pasaron a ser Autoridades Generales Eméritas y seis miembros del Segundo Quórum de los Setenta fueron relevados después de completar su asignación de cinco años. La Primera Presidencia también anunció cambios en las presidencias generales de la Escuela Dominical y de los Hombres Jóvenes, y se sostuvo a dos nuevos miembros de la Presidencia de los Quórumes de los Setenta, cuyos llamamientos se habrán dado a conocer previamente.
Los obispos Henry B. Eyring y Glenn L. Pace, que han estado sirviendo como primer y segundo consejeros del Obispado Presidente, fueron llamados a integrar el Primer Quórum de los Setenta.
Recientemente se anuncio el llamamiento del élder Eyring como comisionado del Sistema Educativo de la Iglesia, puesto que continuara desempeñando. El élder Eyring fue llamado al Obispado Presidente el 6 de abril de 1985; previamente había sido comisionado asistente y comisionado del Sistema Educativo de la Iglesia y presidente del Colegio Ricks. El élder Pace también fue llamado al Obispado Presidente el 6 de abril de 1985. Ha servido como miembro del Consejo Ejecutivo Misional, y antes de recibir su llamamiento para integrar el Obispado, trabajó durante nueve años para el Departamento de Servicios de Bienestar de la Iglesia.
Como consejeros del Obispo Presidente Robert D. Hales, se llamó a H. David Burton y a Richard C. Edgley.
Los élderes Marion D. Hanks y Robert L. Backman pasaron a ser Autoridades Generales Eméritas. El élder Hanks fue llamado al Primer Consejo de los Setenta el 4 de octubre de 1953 a los treinta y un años de edad. Ha servido como presidente del Templo de Salt Lake y presidente de la Misión Británica; fue miembro de la Presidencia de los Setenta dos veces y, mas recientemente, director ejecutivo del Departamento del Sacerdocio.
El élder Backman fue sostenido para integrar el Primer Quórum de los Setenta el lro. de abril de 1978. En octubre de 1985 fue llamado a integrar la Presidencia de los Setenta. Fue presidente general y consejero de la organización de los Hombres Jóvenes y fue presidente de la Misión de los Estados del Noroeste. Ultimamente ha servido como director ejecutivo del Departamento Misional.
Se extendió el relevo después de completar su termino de servicio en el Segundo Quórum de los Setenta a los élderes George R. Hill III, John R. Lasater, Douglas J. Martin, Glen L. Rudd, Douglas H. Smith y Lynn A. Sorensen. Todos ellos fueron llamados el 4 de abril de 1987. Actualmente el hermano Martin es presidente del Templo de Nueva Zelanda.
Los élderes Charles Didier y L. Aldin Porter fueron sostenidos como miembros de la Presidencia de los Quórumes de los Setenta, tomando el lugar de los élderes Hanks y Backman.
También se sostuvo como miembros del Segundo Quórum de los Setenta a los élderes Lino Alvarez, Dallas N. Archibald, Merrill J. Bateman, C. Max Caldwell, Gary J. Coleman, John B. Dickson, John E. Fowler, Jay E. Jensen, Augusto A. Lim, John M. Madsen, V. Dallas Merrell, David E. Sorensen, F. David Stanley, Tai Kwok Yuen y Lowell D. Wood.
Se relevó de la presidencia general de la Escuela Dominical a los élderes Hugh W. Pinnock, Hartman Rector, hijo, y Clinton L. Cutler. El élder Merlin R. Lybbert fue llamado como presidente de dicha organización, con los élderes Clinton L. Cutler y Ronald E. Poelman como primer y segundo consejeros, respectivamente.
Se relevó de la presidencia general de los Hombres Jóvenes a los élderes Robert K. Dellenbach, primer consejero, y Stephen D. Nadauld, segundo consejero. Como consejeros del élder Jack H. Goaslind, presidente general de la Escuela Dominical, se llamo a los élderes Stephen D. Nadauld, primer consejero, y L. Lionel Kendrick, segundo consejero.
Changes in Seventies, Presiding Bishopric
The callings of two new members of the First Quorum of the Seventy and new counselors in the Presiding Bishopric were announced by the First Presidency and were accepted by a sustaining vote during the 162nd Semiannual General Conference.
In addition, emeritus status was granted to two members of the First Quorum of the Seventy, and six members of the Second Quorum of the Seventy were released after completing their five-year assignments.
The First Presidency also announced changes in the general presidencies of the Church’s Sunday School and Young Men organizations, and two new members of the Presidency of the Quorums of the Seventy, previously announced, were sustained. In addition, fifteen new members of the Second Quorum of the Seventy, whose calls were also previously announced, were sustained.
Called to the First Quorum of the Seventy were Bishops Henry B. Eyring and Glenn L. Pace, who have been serving as first and second counselors in the Presiding Bishopric.
It was recently announced that Elder Eyring had been appointed commissioner of the Church Educational System. He will continue in that position. Elder Eyring was called to the Presiding Bishopric on 6 April 1985. He had earlier served as deputy commissioner and commissioner of the Church Educational System and as president of Ricks College.
Elder Pace was also called to the Presiding Bishopric on 6 April 1985. He has served on the Missionary Executive Council, and for nine years prior to his call to the Bishopric, he was employed by the Church Welfare Services Department.
Called to serve as counselors to Presiding Bishop Robert D. Hales were H. David Burton and Richard C. Edgley. (See pages 101 and 102.)
Elders Marion D. Hanks and Robert L. Backman were granted emeritus status. Elder Hanks was called to the First Council of the Seventy on 4 October 1953 at age thirty-one. He has served as president of the Salt Lake Temple and as president of the British Mission, has served twice in the Presidency of the Seventy, and most recently was executive director of the Priesthood Department.
Elder Backman was sustained to the First Quorum of the Seventy on 1 April 1978. He was called to the Presidency of the Seventy in October 1985. He is a former Young Men general president and counselor and served as president of the Northwestern States Mission. Most recently, he was executive director of the Missionary Department.
Released after completing their terms of service in the Second Quorum of the Seventy were Elders George R. Hill III, John R. Lasater, Douglas J. Martin, Glen L. Rudd, Douglas H. Smith, and Lynn A. Sorensen. All six brethren were called to the Seventy on 4 April 1987. Brother Martin is currently serving as president of the New Zealand Temple.
Sustained as members of the Presidency of the Quorums of the Seventy were Elders Charles Didier and L. Aldin Porter, who will succeed Elders Hanks and Backman.
Also sustained as new members of the Second Quorum of the Seventy were Elders Lino Alvarez, Dallas N. Archibald, Merrill J. Bateman, C. Max Caldwell, Gary J. Coleman, John B. Dickson, John E. Fowler, Jay E. Jensen, Augusto A. Lim, John M. Madsen, V. Dallas Merrell, David E. Sorensen, F. David Stanley, Tai Kwok Yuen, and Lowell D. Wood.
Released as the Sunday School general presidency were Elders Hugh W. Pinnock, Hartman Rector, Jr., and Clinton L. Cutler. Elder Merlin R. Lybbert was called to serve as the new president, with Elders Clinton L. Cutler and Ronald E. Poelman serving as first and second counselors, respectively.
Released from the Young Men general presidency were Elders Robert K. Dellenbach, first counselor, and Stephen D. Nadauld, second counselor. Called to serve with Young Men general president Elder Jack H Goaslind were Elders Stephen D. Nadauld, first counselor, and L. Lionel Kendrick, second counselor.
Bishop H. David Burton
Church service is a way of life in the Burton family. H. David Burton remembers both his father and grandfather serving in the Church. Also, his great-great-grandfather, Robert Taylor Burton, was a member of the Presiding Bishopric. Now, newly called as first counselor in the Presiding Bishopric, Bishop Burton is carrying on the family tradition and following in his great-great-grandfather’s footsteps.
“There are really only two priorities in my life,” Bishop Burton explains. “My family and the Church. That pretty much summarizes everything that goes on in my life.”
H. David Burton, born 25 April 1938 in Salt Lake City, met his future wife, Barbara Matheson, in eighth grade. They married in September 1960 after he served in the Southern Australia Mission. They have five children and six grandchildren.
Bishop Burton graduated from the University of Utah. He has worked for the state tax commission and for Kennecott Copper. Except for a short time spent in Michigan while Brother Burton finished a master’s degree, the Burton family has lived in the Salt Lake Valley.
In 1977, Bishop Burton took a job as the Church’s assistant budget officer. A year and a half later, he accepted a job as secretary to the Presiding Bishopric and has been there ever since.
“My mission was probably the single greatest factor in strengthening my testimony,” says Bishop Burton. “I was thrust into a senior companionship role after only eight weeks, and it was one of those sink-or-swim kind of things. We swam, though just barely at times.
“It was there that I learned that bearing testimony is the most important aspect of missionary work. You bear testimony and let the Spirit convert.”
Bishop Burton has continued to rely on the Spirit as he has served as Gospel Doctrine teacher, temple sealer, bishop, and high councilor. The Spirit has also guided him in his work as secretary to the Presiding Bishopric.
As a stake president, he often counseled his stake members to stay close to the Spirit and attend the temple. “The temple is one of the great secrets in keeping marriages together, building testimonies, and keeping your faith strong,” he says.
Obispo H. David Burton
El servicio en la Iglesia es un estilo de vida para la familia Burton. El hermano Burton recuerda que tanto su padre como su abuelo sirvieron en puestos de liderazgo durante muchos años. Además, su tatarabuelo, Robert Taylor Burton, fue miembro del Obispado Presidente. Ahora después de haber sido llamado recientemente como primer consejero del Obispado Presidente, el obispo Burton continua la tradición familiar y sigue los pasos de su tatarabuelo. “Realmente sólo hay dos cosas que toman prioridad en mi vida”, explica el obispo Burton: “mi familia y la Iglesia; en términos concisos, en eso consiste mi vida”.
El hermano Burton nació el 25 de abril de 1938 en Salt Lake City. El y su esposa Barbara se conocieron cuando ambos cursaban el segundo año de la escuela secundaria. Contrajeron matrimonio en septiembre de 1960 después de que el fue misionero por dos años en la Misión Australia Sur. Tienen cinco hijos, tres de ellos casados; también tienen seis nietos.
El obispo Burton se graduó de la Universidad de Utah, obteniendo un titulo en Economía. Después de trabajar para la comisión estatal de impuestos, trabajo para la corporación Kennecott Copper, con sede en Salt Lake City. La familia Burton ha residido en dicha ciudad, excepto por un breve periodo en que vivieron en el estado de Michigan mientras el terminaba sus estudios para obtener la maestría.
En l977, el obispo Burton empezó a trabajar como oficial asistente del presupuesto de la Iglesia. Un año y medio mas tarde aceptó el trabajo de secretario del Obispado Presidente, lugar donde ha trabajado hasta el día de hoy.
“Mi misión fue probablemente lo que mas contribuyó a que mi testimonio creciera”, observa el obispo Burton. “En tan sólo ocho semanas me hicieron compañero mayor, y fue una experiencia en la que tuvimos que decidir entre trabajar con mucho empeño o fracasar; trabajamos y logramos el éxito, pero a veces a duras penas.
“Fue ahí donde aprendí que el aspecto mas importante de la obra misional es expresar el testimonio; uno expresa su testimonio y deja que el Espíritu lleve a cabo la conversión”.
El obispo Burton ha continuado confiando en el Espíritu al desempeñar sus tareas como maestro de Doctrina del Evangelio, sellador en el templo, obispo y miembro del sumo consejo. El Espíritu también le ha brindado guía en su puesto como secretario ejecutivo del Obispado Presidente durante los últimos catorce años.
Como presidente de estaca antes de ser llamado al Obispado Presidente, a menudo exhortaba a los miembros de su estaca a que se mantuvieran cerca del Espíritu y asistieran al templo. El declara: “El templo es una de las claves principales para mantener juntos a los matrimonios, edificar testimonios y mantener una fe firme”.
Obispo Richard C. Edgley
Hace once años, Richard C. Edgley era vicepresidente de la compañía General Mills y miembro de una presidencia de estaca. Le sorprendió recibir una oferta de la Iglesia para trabajar como director gerente del Departamento de Finanzas y Registros.
“Tarde algún tiempo en tomar la decisión; fue una de las decisiones mas difíciles de mi vida”, afirma el nuevo segundo consejero del Obispado Presidente. “Pero me ayudó a definir lo que realmente era importante y a darle el debido orden de importancia a las cosas. Nunca me he arrepentido de haberlo hecho”.
Una de las razones por las que fue difícil tomar la decisión fue porque el hermano Edgley había trabajado diecinueve años para General Mills. Después de obtener un titulo de la Universidad Brigham Young en ciencias políticas e historia, obtuvo un grado de maestría de la Universidad del Estado de Indiana, y de ahí había pasado a trabajar para General Mills. Pasó cuatro años en Toronto, Canadá, y cuatro años en Boston, Massachusetts, antes de ubicarse en la sede de las oficinas generales en Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Además de ayudarlo a definir y fortalecer lo que realmente valía, el traslado a Salt Lake City traía consigo otros beneficios para el hermano Edgley y su esposa Pauline Nielson, y sus seis hijos, dos de los cuales están ya casados . “ Encontramos amigos maravillosos”, dice el obispo Edgley, que conoce muy bien la importancia de los amigos. Cuando era un jovencito, pasó un verano trabajando en una granja en el estado de Idaho, y eran muy escasos los amigos que tenían los mismos principios que el. “Fue un tiempo muy solitario … no demasiado cómodo”. recuerda. “Pero al final, fue una gran bendición. Pase aquel verano estudiando las Escrituras; fue entonces que el evangelio cobró nueva vida para mi”. Al poco tiempo sirvió en una misión en los estados del Este.
El obispo Edgley, que nació el 6 de febrero de 1936 y se crió en Preston, Idaho, declara que sus padres, Phenoi y Ona Crockett Edgley, fueron las personas que tuvieron mayor influencia en su vida. “Murieron hace diez años, pero aun siento su influencia”, afirma. “A veces me pregunto que querría mi padre que hiciera en ciertas situaciones”.
Otras personas que han surtido una influencia en su vida han sido los lideres de la Iglesia. El trabajar con las Autoridades Generales durante los últimos diez años le ha enseñado la importancia de seguir a los lideres y le ha demostrado que la obra del Señor es verdaderamente inspirada.
“Un pasaje de Escritura que ha tenido particular significado para mi desde que fui llamado como Autoridad General se encuentra en D. y C. 84:88”, declara el obispo Edgley. “Dice que el Señor enviara a Sus siervos y que El estará a su diestra y a su siniestra, que Su Espíritu estará en sus corazones y que tendrá a Sus ángeles a su alrededor para sostenerlos. Ultimamente he estado pensando mucho en esa promesa”.
Bishop Richard C. Edgley
Eleven years ago, Richard C. Edgley was a vice president of General Mills and was serving in a stake presidency. He was surprised when an offer came from the Church to serve as managing director of the Finance and Records Department.
“It took me a while to make the decision; it was the hardest decision I’ve made,” says the newly called second counselor in the Presiding Bishopric. “But it crystallized in my mind what was really important and helped me reprioritize things. I’ve never regretted it.”
Brother Edgley had been working for General Mills for nineteen years. He graduated from Brigham Young University with a bachelor’s degree, earned a master’s degree from Indiana State University, and then went to work for General Mills, living in Toronto, Boston, and Minneapolis.
Besides helping define and strengthen priorities, the move to Salt Lake City held other benefits for Brother Edgley, his wife, Pauline Nielson Edgley, and their six children. “We found super friends,” Bishop Edgley says. And he understands the importance of friends. As a teenager he spent a summer working on an Idaho ranch and found few friends who shared his values. “It was a lonely time, not a comfortable time,” he remembers. “But in the end, it was a great blessing. I spent that summer studying the scriptures. It was then that the gospel came alive for me.” Shortly afterwards, he served a mission to the eastern states.
Born 6 February 1936 and reared in Preston, Idaho, Bishop Edgley cites his parents, Phenoi and Ona Crockett Edgley, as the most influential people in his life.
Other influential people in his life have been Church leaders. Working with General Authorities has taught him the importance of following leaders and has shown him how the work of the Lord is inspired.
“A scripture that has had particular significance to me since being called as a General Authority is D&C 84:88,” Bishop Edgley says. “It talks of the Lord sending out His servants and of His being on their right hand and their left hand, His Spirit being in their heart, and having His angels bear them up.”
Plans for Three Temples Announced
Properties have been designated for the construction of new temples in Hong Kong; Hartford, Connecticut; and Utah County, Utah. The temple in Hartford will “accommodate Church members from the New York, Boston, and New England areas,” explained President Gordon B. Hinckley, First Counselor in the First Presidency, when announcing the new temples during the 162nd Semiannual General Conference.
The Utah County temple will “relieve the pressure on the Provo Temple, which is operating far beyond its designed capacity,” President Hinckley continued.
“We anticipate that there will be others, the locations of which will be announced later,” he concluded.
Se Anuncian Planes para la Construcción de Cuatro Templos
Se han adquirido los terrenos para la construcción de nuevos templos en Hong Kong; Hartford, Connecticut; y el condado de Utah, Utah. Durante la Conferencia General Semestral numero 162, cuando se hizo el anuncio de la construcción de nuevos templos, el presidente Gordon B. Hinckley, Primer Consejero de la Primera Presidencia, explicó que al templo en Hartford asistirán los miembros de la Iglesia que residen en Nueva York, Boston y Nueva Inglaterra.
El templo del condado de Utah “aliviara el congestionamiento del Templo de Provo, que ha estado funcionando bajo condiciones fuera de lo normal”, declaró el presidente Hinckley.
Dijo, además, que mas tarde se daría a conocer la ubicación de otros templos.
Dos semanas después de la conferencia general, se dio a conocer el lugar donde se construirá uno de esos templos.
Durante la rededicación del Templo de Londres, Inglaterra, efectuada del 18 al 20 de octubre, el presidente Hinckley dijo que se había elegido el terreno para edificar un segundo templo en el Reino Unido. El nuevo templo, que se llamara Templo de Preston, Inglaterra, servirá a los santos de veinte estacas del norte de Inglaterra, Escocia e Irlanda. Todavía no se ha anunciado la fecha en que comenzara la construcción.
Misioneros en Mongolia
A petición del gobierno de Mongolia, la Iglesia ha enviado a doce misioneros para ayudar al país a mejorar su sistema de educación superior.
El élder Monte J. Brough, de los Setenta, y Presidente del Area de Asia, dijo que los seis matrimonios asignados a Mongolia habían sido seleccionados por su experiencia y preparación en el campo de la educación. Ellos ayudaran a los lideres gubernamentales así como a los lideres de las cinco universidades de Mongolia y demás institutos profesionales y técnicos con el desarrollo y planeamiento de normas, el desarrollo de un plan de estudios y otros asuntos pertinentes. “Que nosotros sepamos, ellos serán los primeros misioneros en Mongolia”, comentó el élder Brough. “Entraran en el país como misioneros y queda entendido que les enseñaran a otros acerca de nuestra fe y llevaran a cabo reuniones de la Iglesia”.
Todas las parejas residirán en Ulan Bator, capital de Mongolia, y trabajaran bajo la dirección de la Presidencia de Area de Asia. Mongolia tiene una población de 2,1 millones de habitantes, la mitad de ellos menores de dieciocho años. El nivel de alfabetismo es de 90 %, uno de los mas elevados en el mundo.
Después de la disolución de la Unión Soviética, el gobierno de Mongolia buscó ayuda a fin de continuar proveyendo muchos de los servicios que previamente recibían de los rusos, incluso el conocimiento de cómo poner en marcha un sistema educativo superior.
Los matrimonios misioneros asignados a Mongolia tienen experiencia en el campo de la educación; entre ellos se encuentra un ex presidente de un colegio de comercio, un medico encargado de estudios posgraduados en un centro medico universitario, un profesor especializado en computadoras, un profesor de negocio, un profesor especializado en el desarrollo y administración de cursos de estudio y un administrador en el campo de la educación.
Missionaries in Mongolia
At the request of the government of Mongolia, the Church is sending six missionary couples to help the country improve its higher education system.
The six couples assigned to Mongolia were chosen because of their experience and educational preparation, said Elder Monte J. Brough, of the Seventy, president of the Asia Area. They will assist the government and the leaders of Mongolia’s five universities and other professional and technical institutes with policy development and planning, curriculum development, and other related concerns.
“As far as we know, they will be the first missionaries to enter Mongolia,” Elder Brough said. “They are going as missionaries and it is understood that they will be teaching others about our faith and holding Church meetings.”
All of the couples will be based in Ulaanbaatar, the capital of Mongolia, and will work under the direction of the Asia Area presidency.
Mongolia, about the size of the state of Alaska, has a population of 2.1 million, with half of the population under eighteen years of age. The nation’s literacy rate of 90 percent is one of the highest in the world.
After the fall of the Soviet Union, the Mongolian government sought help in providing many of the services previously provided by the Soviets, including the knowledge of how to run a higher education system.
The missionary couples assigned to Mongolia are trained educators, including a former business college president, a medical doctor responsible for postgraduate studies at a university medical center, a computer science professor, a business professor, a professor of curriculum development and administration, and an educational administrator.
Four African Nations Dedicated
In five days, Elders Russell M. Nelson and Richard G. Scott, both of the Quorum of the Twelve, dedicated four nations of Africa: Zambia, Botswana, Namibia, and Congo.
Zambia was dedicated on August 20 by Elder Nelson at a secluded spot on a hill near a lake on university grounds in Lusaka, the nation’s capital.
On August 21, Elder Scott offered the dedicatory prayer in Botswana in a small clearing in the Gaborone Game Reserve.
The next day, a small group of members gathered in Namibia on Tower Hill in Windhoek for the dedicatory prayer offered by Elder Nelson.
Elder Scott dedicated the nation of Congo on August 24 in a shaded area located on a hillside about ten miles down the Congo River from Brazzaville, the nation’s capital.
Almost all Church members in Zambia attended the dedication. The Church in Zambia began with a branch established in Kwekwe for expatriates working in the area. The first missionary couple arrived in the nation in April of this year, and the Church was formally registered on 10 July 1992. Since April, twenty-six people have been baptized, and fifty-four people regularly attend sacrament meetings.
The first missionary couple sent to Botswana arrived in June 1990 with an assignment to locate members baptized in the United States who had relocated to the desert nation. Five people were found, and others were baptized in September of that same year. Church registration was filed in the nation in August 1991. In March 1992, the first branch was divided into two units. Membership has grown to 160 in the nation.
Namibia is part of the South Africa Cape Town Mission. A small group of members gathered for that nation’s dedication. Mission president Blaine Hudson said, “the Lord has touched the hearts of local officials, who have welcomed The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to this new nation. The Spirit among the little flock showed a depth of inner feeling that they are not forgotten and are known to the Lord. … The Church is now poised to blossom in this vast and sparsely settled land.”
In Congo, some sixty-five members and local Church leaders attended the dedication. Afterwards, a special fireside attended by approximately 250 members and visitors was held in Brazzaville. Elders Nelson and Scott, along with mission and district leaders, also attended the meeting.
Se Dedican Cuatro Naciones Africanas
En cinco días, los élderes Russell M. Nelson y Richard G. Scott, ambos miembros del Quórum de los Doce, dedicaron cuatro naciones africanas: Zambia, Botswana, Namibia y Congo.
El 20 de agosto del año pasado, en un sitio apartado, en una colina cercana a un lago en los terrenos de la universidad en Lusaka, capital del estado, el élder Nelson dedicó el estado de Zambia.
El 21 de agosto, el élder Scott ofreció la oración dedicatoria en Botswana, en un pequeño claro de los terrenos reservados de caza en Gaborone.
Al día siguiente, un pequeño grupo de miembros de la Iglesia se reunió en Namibia, en el cerro Tower, en Windhoek, para la oración dedicatoria ofrecida por el élder Nelson. El élder Scott dedicó el estado de Congo el 24 de agosto, en un lugar sombreado ubicado al lado de una colina a aproximadamente quince kilómetros río abajo de Brazzaville, capital del estado.
Casi todos los miembros de la Iglesia en Zambia asistieron a la dedicación. La Iglesia en esa región empezó en Kwekwe con el establecimiento de una rama designada para los extranjeros que trabajaban ahí. El primer matrimonio misionero llegó a ese estado en abril del año pasado, y la Iglesia se reconoció formalmente el 10 de julio de 1992. Desde abril se han bautizado a veintiséis personas y cincuenta y cuatro asisten regularmente a las reuniones sacramentales.
El primer matrimonio misionero enviado a Botswana llegó en junio de 1990 con la asignación de localizar a los miembros que se habían bautizado en Estados Unidos pero que se habían regresado a su país natal. Encontraron a cinco, y en septiembre de ese mismo año se bautizaron mas. En agosto de 1991 se reconoció oficialmente a la Iglesia. En marzo de 1992 se dividió la primera rama; el numero de miembros en el estado ha aumentado a 160.
Namibia forma parte de la Misión Africa del Sur Cape Town. Un pequeño grupo de miembros asistió a la dedicación de esa tierra. El presidente de la misión, Blaine Hudson, dijo que “el Señor ha conmovido el corazón de los oficiales locales, quienes han dado la bienvenida a La Iglesia de Jesucristo de los Santos de los Ultimos L5)fas a este nuevo territorio. El Espíritu les hizo saber al pequeño rebaño que no se les ha olvidado y que el Señor se acuerda de ellos … La Iglesia esta a punto de florecer en esta vasta y escasamente poblada tierra”.
Aproximadamente sesenta y cinco miembros y lideres locales de la Iglesia asistieron a la dedicación en Congo. Después se llevó a cabo una charla fogonera especial en Brazzaville, a la que asistieron aproximadamente 250 miembros y visitantes. Los dos miembros del Quórum de los Doce, así como lideres de misión y distrito, también asistieron a la reunión.
Church Organizes 1,900th Stake
A particular stake conference for Church members in Orlando, Florida, proved to be historic: the Church’s 1,900th stake was created in a division of the Orlando Florida Stake.
Elder Neal A. Maxwell of the Quorum of the Twelve created the Orlando Florida South Stake, observing, “We make history today not only for your area, but also for the whole Church. …
“Someday, when we get the real statistics of the Church, they will be made of marvelous, heroic moments on the part of sisters and brothers and children of the Church. I salute them as I salute you on this occasion of some importance in history.”
Other speakers at the conference included Elder Merrill J. Bateman of the Seventy and Brother Alvie R. Evans, regional representative.
President of the new stake is Carl E. Reynolds, Jr., a former bishop of the Windermere Ward. Joel H. McKinnon, previously serving as a counselor in the stake presidency, will serve as president of the parent stake.
The Orlando Florida Stake, created 23 February 1958, was the second stake in Florida. The new stake is the seventh stake to be created within the boundaries of the original stake.
The Church in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka
LDS missionaries proselyted as early as the 1850s on what has sometimes been called the Indian subcontinent, but it is only in recent years that the Church has maintained a presence there. To learn how the gospel is spreading in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka, the Ensign talked with Elder of the Seventy, Asia Area president, and Elders and of the Seventy, counselors in the area presidency.
Question: Can you tell us about the progress of the Church in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka?
Answer: With 800 million people in India, as an example, the Church’s greatest strength is in its potential to grow. But we don’t fully know what that potential is yet. In these lands, we’re about at the stage where the Church was forty or fifty years ago in South America. We have comparatively few members, but they are faithful and devoted and willing.
Q: How many members do we have in these countries?
A: In India, we have 1,200 members. They are scattered all over the country, although the bulk of the members are in south central India. We have mission districts in Bangalore, Hyderabad, and New Delhi.
In Pakistan, the Church has seven units, with approximately 150 members. We have had nearly 60 baptisms there during the past year.
The first branch of the Church in Bangladesh was officially organized in Dhaka on March 14 this year. There are nearly 40 members in that country.
There is also a branch of the Church in Colombo, Sri Lanka; that island country has 112 members.
Q: Do people in these countries face special challenges when they join the Church?
A: Poverty is a great challenge to many persons in these countries. Also, because religious culture is so much a part of the life-style, it is difficult for a person to adopt a religion that has a different life-style. Peer pressure is sometimes a strong obstacle to those who would select a different religion.
Q: How are members doing in meeting these challenges?
A: Wherever the gospel takes root, regardless of the country or the circumstances in which people live, it has the same marvelous effect—to bless lives and bring joy. It changes people in India just as it does in Murray, Utah.
Q: Can you think of people who are examples of this growth?
A: There is a young man in India, Ebeneezer Solomon. His mother, who speaks no English, learned about the Church some years ago through one of the many missionary couples we have had in India. She came into the Church, and she brought her two sons in as well. Ebeneezer served a mission in India a few years ago. He is now married and currently serves as a counselor to the president of the Singapore Mission. Ebeneezer’s brother Samuel is president of the branch in Bangalore.
There are many others we could mention. There is a family in Lahore, Pakistan, who came into contact with the Book of Mormon several years ago. They gained testimonies of its truth and were recently baptized. And there is a brother in Pakistan whose life was changed through The Prophet Joseph Smith’s Testimony, a Church pamphlet that came into his hands.
We should also mention the contributions of our expatriate members—people from North America or Europe or other places who are living in these lands because of positions in government or business. In many cases, these people felt moved by the Lord to accept their present assignments and have found unexpected opportunities to serve. With their experience in the Church, they help strengthen the branches wherever they are, and they have been responsible for introducing many local people to the gospel. Their examples of devotion and service have been of immeasurable value to the local Saints.
Q: What do you see in the future of the Church in this part of Asia?
A: Continuing growth is the expectation, as the Spirit touches people and as we are able to reach them. In this huge vineyard, the laborers have been comparatively few, but they have served well. In addition to our couples, missionaries have included a number from Fiji who are of Indian descent. In January, we received the first North American full-time missionaries to serve in India in this century.
We’re trying right now to keep the Church as simple and basic as possible in all of these areas so that members won’t feel overwhelmed by organizational structure as they’re learning to grow in the gospel.
At one sacrament meeting in Bangalore, India, not long ago, a fourteen-year-old boy gave a fine sacrament meeting talk. His twenty-year-old brother conducted the meeting; it was as well prepared and organized as any Church meeting anywhere. In some of these areas where the Church is small and comparatively new, we’re developing strong leaders for the future.
There is another element that strengthens our efforts—families are still intact in these countries. This condition provides a natural tie to Church doctrines and principles, and it is one of the things that will help the Church to grow.
New Music Items Available
Two new music items are available through Church Distribution:
Hymns on CD. Includes musical introduction and all verses of each hymn in the hymnbook performed with piano, strings, and instrumental accompaniment. Suitable for Church and home use. Designed for hymn accompaniment, listening, and background music. It’s easy to find the hymn you want. No. 50866. Music only, 14 discs, $23.50 per set.
Conducting Course Booklet and Tape. Includes lesson manual and audiocassette. Provides basic instruction for conducting the hymns of the Church and learning to read rhythm. Can be used not only for Church-sponsored training programs but also in the home. May be especially useful in areas where there is limited instruction available. No. 33619. Priced at $4.15 per set.
Saints Respond to Natural Disasters
In an outpouring of love and service, members of the Church helped people in two areas hit by devastating hurricanes.
More than six thousand Latter-day Saints from six southern states, armed with building materials, chain saws, and other supplies, streamed into southern Florida to help rebuild the lives and homes of the victims of the costliest natural disaster in U.S. history.
Many of the volunteers wore bright yellow T-shirts on which the words “Mormon Helping Hands” were emblazoned. Those helping hands were responsible for putting temporary roofs on some 3,000 homes and other buildings; distributing ten semitrailer loads of emergency food, water, and medical supplies; repairing 710 homes in four migrant farm labor camps; and loading 2,100 dump truck loads of debris.
For their efforts, the group of volunteers was honored by the 2nd Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, the U.S. Army unit that supervised relief efforts in the Florida area.
“Of all the groups we’ve worked with, the Mormon Church was the best organized and the most efficient,” said Lt. Col. Charles R. Rash, who expressed his amazement that the Church so quickly mobilized a “spearhead unit,” consisting of a tractor trailer with emergency supplies that was on location the afternoon the hurricane struck.
Hurricane Andrew ripped through southern Florida in the early hours of August 24. The storm, with sustained winds of 140 miles per hour and gusts exceeding 160 miles per hour, killed fifteen people and destroyed an estimated 85,000 homes, leaving more than a quarter of a million people homeless. On August 26, Hurricane Andrew struck communities along Louisiana’s southern shoreline with high winds, tornadoes, and up to ten inches of rain.
Immediately after the hurricane, Latter-day Saint volunteers distributed emergency food, water, tents, and medical supplies after assessing family sizes and needs at four different relief centers, including three LDS meetinghouses. Church and member-donated food and water supplies were distributed in an orderly manner through the procedures of the Church welfare system. Those of other faiths who sought help also received sufficient supplies for their immediate needs.
The first relief and repair crews, including many of the area’s full-time missionaries, were sent out Tuesday, August 25, the day after Hurricane Andrew struck, to temporarily repair the 178 salvageable homes of Church members. Thousands of other members from all over the United States then combined efforts with those of two U.S. Army units—the 2nd Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, and the 10th Mountain Division from Fort Drum, New York—to help victims in the area.
Thousands of volunteers arrived at the areas in trucks donated by the army and Ryder Truck Rental, Inc., carrying tons of donated plywood, clear plastic, and tar paper. “The military couldn’t believe the logistics involved in our getting all that stuff down there so quickly,” said Elder Duane Sylvester, a public affairs missionary for the North America Southeast Area.
The crews went door-to-door in the devastated neighborhoods, repairing roofs and replacing shattered windows.
Community leaders and local media have praised Latter-day Saints throughout the area for their preparedness. Elder Alexander B. Morrison of the Seventy, area president, said that the Saints have been helped by good emergency planning. “The stake presidents in the area had emergency plans in place. Since this is the hurricane season, they had brought out and re-examined their plans within the last few weeks.”
Although members didn’t know exactly where the hurricane would come ashore, they did their best to prepare for it. On August 23, members put up three hundred sheets of plywood to protect windows in all the meetinghouses. For their own protection, missionaries were housed in the meetinghouse of the Kendall Ward of the Miami Florida South Stake.
In the hours after the hurricane hit, missionaries were authorized to deliver food and other relief supplies to members in need, many of whom were left without food and transportation, and to assist in other cleanup efforts.
The measures taken to protect the buildings paid off. After the storm, the Kendall Ward meetinghouse became headquarters for coordinating relief efforts. That the building is still standing is a small miracle; building inspectors claim that because of its location, it should have been flattened.
Another meetinghouse in the Miami Florida Stake was used as a Red Cross shelter. “We are cooperating with the Civil Defense people in every way we can. We have good reason to believe many agencies look to us for leadership in helping the people, not just our own,” Elder Morrison reported.
The thousands of volunteers were organized in groups of tens, fifties, and hundreds, with captains over each group. To keep track of the people, volunteers registered at relief centers set up in various meetinghouses. The volunteers also came into the area bringing their own food, water, and tents.
No members or missionaries were injured in the storm. Church meetinghouses in Homestead and Cutler Ridge, Florida, sustained substantial roof and water damage.
Being friendly and helping others has always been a trademark of those living on islands in the Pacific Ocean, but in the aftermath of a September 11 hurricane in the Hawaiian Islands, Church members are going above and beyond their usual standards. Several relief agencies turned to the Church for help in distributing emergency supplies of water and food.
The Hanalei Branch meetinghouse was one of the few structures to have gas cooking facilities in operation after the storm, and members immediately began helping coordinate and distribute hot food to hundreds of people. “All the full-time missionaries have been out visiting nonmembers and less-active families, helping them clean up their homes and giving them encouragement,” said Steven Lee, second counselor in the Kauai Hawaii Stake. The northern island of Kauai was the hardest hit in the storm.
Americares, a nonprofit, private relief agency, used the stake center and other meetinghouses as distribution centers for medical supplies and food. In addition, the Salvation Army used the Hanalei Branch meetinghouse as a center for distributing canned goods and baby diapers.
Medical teams from the mainland also used the same building to conduct examinations. And the Red Cross has been interviewing hurricane victims in the Kalaheo Ward meetinghouse.
“These agencies find the Church to be an excellent source of cooperation because of the widespread nature of our units,” explained Brother Donald L. Hallstrom, regional representative. “And I believe they appreciate the integrity with which Church members operate.”
Elder Jack H Goaslind of the Seventy, a counselor in the North America West Area presidency, toured much of the island on September 15. He inspected four of the five damaged meetinghouses and visited the homes of several members, offering comfort and support. Then he and other leaders discussed relief efforts, which included gathering an inventory of available resources and matching those resources with needs.
“The attitude of the members is miraculous,” observed Elder Goaslind, who also reported “deep feelings of appreciation for priesthood and auxiliary leaders who have done so much to rebuild and raise the spirits of the people.”
Hurricane Iniki slammed into Kauai with winds reaching 160 miles an hour. The storm destroyed the homes of some 10 percent of members, while the homes of another 30 percent were seriously damaged. Many other homes sustained minor damage. All five of the meetinghouses on the island were damaged, three seriously. Four people died as a result of the storm; no members or missionaries were killed or injured.
The islands of Oahu and Hawaii were also affected, though less severely.
La Iglesia ha proveído de media tonelada de alimentos básicos en un envío de ayuda humanitaria para Somalia y otros países africanos asolados por la sequía. Los alimentos y materiales provienen de donaciones voluntarias de dinero y mercancía de los miembros de la Iglesia por todo el mundo.
Además, la Iglesia proveerá los fondos para varios proyectos que tienen que ver con la hidráulica y el desarrollo agrícola, según informaron los oficiales de la División del Servicio Humanitario, una dependencia del Departamento de Servicios de Bienestar de la Iglesia.
El envío de alimentos y materiales a las naciones africanas a través de las agencias de auxilio aprobadas ha estado en marcha desde junio de 1992, cuando se aprobó la solicitud de ayuda que la Presidencia de Area de Africa había hecho a la Iglesia.
Los envíos de alimentos han consistido principalmente en leche en polvo, harina de trigo, harina de maíz y frijoles, que se utilizaran en programas de alimentación suplementaria para niños desnutridos menores de cinco años, madres que están amamantando a sus hijos y mujeres embarazadas.
Se calcula que los alimentos que la Iglesia esta enviando proveerán alimentación suplementaria y terapéutica para 13.000 niños durante tres meses.
Todos los alimentos que se están enviando se preparan y empaquetan para uso inmediato y se distribuyen en diez lugares diferentes Además, se esta enviando equipo medico, un vehículo para llevar a cabo la distribución, jabón y mas de 10.000 kilos de ropa.
La Iglesia envía la ayuda a través de agencias de auxilio, que incluyen “Interaid International”, al norte de Kenya, donde se han concentrado cientos de miles de refugiados de Somalia; a través de “Save the Children USA”, en Mozambique y Zimbahwe; y a través del “National Council of Negro Women (USA) “, en Zimbabwe.
Church Sends Aid to Africa
The Church is providing a million pounds of staple foods in an aid package for Somalia and other drought-stricken African countries. The food and materials are provided by voluntary cash and in-kind donations from Church members throughout the world.
In addition, the Church will fund several water and agriculture development projects, said officials of the Humanitarian Service Division, an arm of the Church’s Welfare Services Department.
The channeling of food and materials to the African nations through selected relief agencies has been ongoing since June, when a request by the Church’s Africa Area Presidency for assistance was approved.
The shipments of food have primarily consisted of dry milk, wheat flour, cornmeal, and beans. The food is targeted for supplementary feeding programs for malnourished children up to five years of age, mothers who are nursing children, and pregnant women.
It is estimated that the food currently being provided by the Church will provide supplemental and therapeutic feeding for 13,000 children for three months.
All food being delivered is processed and packaged for immediate use. It is being distributed at ten separate locations.
Also being provided are medical equipment, a delivery vehicle, soap products, and 160,000 pounds of clothing.
The Church is delivering its aid through relief agencies, including Interaid International in northeast Kenya, where hundreds of thousands of Somalian refugees are concentrated; through Save the Children USA in Mozambique and Zimbabwe; and through the National Council of Negro Women (USA) in Zimbabwe.
Charlottesville Saints: A Heritage of Faith
Nestled in the rolling hills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains, Charlottesville is a city rich in heritage. Named in 1762 after the wife of England’s King George III, the area was home to three early United States presidents and to explorers Lewis and Clark.
The city’s most renowned citizen was Thomas Jefferson. As an inspired statesman, he left behind a legacy of achievement that continues to permeate the community of 100,000 citizens—a cosmopolitan cross section of farmers, horse breeders, federal government retirees, university scholars, business people, and shopkeepers.
The rise of the Church in Charlottesville adds another rich dimension to the area’s history. In 1892 Elder R. A. Harvey met and baptized Garrett and Mary Wells and their daughter, Florence, in nearby Batesville. At the turn of the century, the Deane family joined the Church, and not long after, Latter-day Saint missionaries baptized the eight members of the Knight family and, later, eight more from Brother Knight’s remarriage after his first wife passed away.
Shortly after Viola Deane married LeRoy White Snow, LeRoy joined the Church. He became president of the first branch in Charlottesville in 1934. His lively personality and gospel radio program endeared him to the community and fostered steady growth in the branch. But despite Brother Snow’s missionary zeal and district president W. E. Larsen’s leadership, that growth was slow. Lamont Dudley was called as branch president in 1954, and Brother Snow became bishop a decade later when the Charlottesville Ward was created by Elder Harold B. Lee as part of the newly formed Richmond Virginia Stake.
In 1978 Charlottesville’s first stake was created from the ward in Charlottesville and other units in the Shenandoah Valley beyond the Blue Ridge Mountains. Today the Waynesboro Virginia Stake includes nearly three thousand members, from eight units in thirteen counties in two states (the other state is West Virginia).
Many Saints in Charlottesville are newcomers to the area. Peggy Christensen, whose husband is a bishop, lived in six western states before moving to Charlottesville. But she feels at home. “The Church is always there for your family,” she says. “You’re always accepted.”
Members like Duane and Rena Snow represent a melding of the new and the old. A Church member from Alaska, Rena met Duane at Brigham Young University. They married and moved to Charlottesville. “Since Duane was raised here and everybody knew the Snows,” Rena says, “we are known as the Mormon family. Everywhere we go, people connect us with the Church, which is a good thing—it’s something to live up to.”
When she was a university student living in New Mexico and majoring in history, Gretchen Patterson was given a copy of the Book of Mormon. She was so fascinated by it that she read it in three days and was soon baptized. Nine years later, she met and married a recent convert, Richard, who had been impressed by the honesty of his LDS coworkers. They now have two children.
The Pattersons feel good about living in an area where the Church has not been long established. “The Church was my immediate group of friends. It’s wonderful to watch the youth strive to live their religion and be examples to the youth of other faiths around them,” Sister Patterson says.
Allie Sidwell, a student in Sister Patterson’s seminary class, is one such example. Upset when a local group distributed explicit sex education materials on the high school campus, she expressed her differing views on the subject at a county school board meeting and later on a television news program.
It may not be easy to live where there are few Church members, Allie says, but “I’ve learned that the strength of a testimony is more precious than numbers of members. And the members here are strong and faithful.”
Ridge Hicks, president of the LDS Student Association (LDSSA) at the University of Virginia, is active in presenting the group’s views to the student council.
“The attention is not usually negative,” he says, “because people are very open-minded and accepting here.”
Sister Christensen agrees: “We’ve seen great growth in our children here, as far as gaining a testimony. They’ve had to stand up for what they believe in, and Charlottesville is an area where people will let you do that.”
Stake mission president Bobby Snow is a time-management consultant and publisher who has learned from his parents a deep love that helps him overcome obstacles. Despite his father’s murder several years ago, his son’s untimely death while serving a mission, and recent health problems, President Snow remains upbeat and positive. The city is a “special place” where “there’s always been a lot of love one for another,” he says.
That love can be painful, however; many members—students and military and university families—move to the area and enrich the fellowship of the Saints but soon must move away. Every Fourth of July, President Snow helps renew those bonds of friendship by inviting stake “alumni” to a reunion. The festivities end with fireworks.
The Church in Charlottesville has produced an enthusiastic group of members that Elder James E. Faust referred to in a recent regional conference as “a band of faithful Saints in the hills of Virginia.” Diverse in background, united in faith and devotion to the gospel, and rooted in a rich colonial heritage, the Saints in Charlottesville feel blessed to have the restored gospel amid the hills, halls, and pillared porches of upland Virginia.
Oakland Temple Visitors’ Center Dedicated
Elder David B. Haight of the Quorum of the Twelve recently dedicated the Oakland Temple Visitors’ Center, a 22,000-square-foot building located on the Oakland, California, temple grounds. Modern electronic and video equipment, easily accessible to visitors, offers viewers answers to questions about religion, families, and the restored gospel. In addition, the sixth largest family history center in the Church is housed in the lower level of the center.
“We have met here this day, our Father, to present unto thee a newly finished facility,” said Elder Haight, in the dedicatory prayer. “Two vitally essential activities of thy church—the missionary work of proclaiming the gospel and the ever-expanding family history search for family linkage of ancestry—[are] joined together … , on this sacred plot of land, [in] a gospel teaching and research facility using the most modern teaching skills to declare and testify of the reestablishment of the Church of thy Son, Jesus Christ, in these latter days.”
Hundreds of business and civic leaders and local clergy toured the facility, as well as the public. After the dedication, Elders J. Richard Clarke and L. Aldin Porter of the Presidency of the Seventy conducted workshops on family history and missionary programs for Church leaders from most of the sixty-eight stakes in northern California.
Church Museum Announces Competition
The Museum of Church History and Art is inviting LDS artists to create original works for the Third International Art Competition.
Museum officials said art for the 1994 competition must reflect a theme, value, activity, or image drawn from Latter-day Saint life. The theme for the competition will be “Living the Gospel in the World Church.”
Artists are encouraged to depict themes related to the way Latter-day Saints express religious standards in their lives as individuals, as families, and in other relationships and activities.
Entries will be accepted in all artistic media, including paintings, prints, photographs, sculpture, textiles, ceramics, needlework, and other arts and crafts. Original works may not exceed 84 inches in the longest dimension.
For the first round of jurying, slides or photographs of the original work, accompanied by an entry form, will be due on 30 November 1993. A final jurying of accepted works will identify pieces for an exhibit at the museum. Prizes for meritorious work and purchases for the museum collection will be announced at the exhibit, which will open in March 1994.
Artists who entered the 1991 competition will automatically receive an information sheet and entry form by mail. Others may request information from the Museum of Church History and Art, 45 North West Temple Street, Salt Lake City, UT 84150, phone (801) 240-4615.
The First Presidency has announced the assignment of a new temple president. C. Jay Larson of Taylorsville, Utah, will preside over the Papeete Tahiti Temple.
Lamanite Generation Performs in Spain
Brigham Young University’s Lamanite Generation recently traveled to Spain. Their appearances there, supported in large part by the United States Information Agency, offered a twist on the 500th anniversary of Columbus’s arrival in the Americas. While the famous navigator traveled from Spain to a New World and encountered Indians, the Lamanite Generation traveled from the New World to discover the land of Columbus.
The show, “Living Legends,” wove indigenous Indian dances into a forty-minute concert of dance and song. The group was also filmed for a thirty-minute show to be broadcast throughout Europe.
The troupe is composed of thirty dancers and singers, all Native Americans, Latin Americans, or Polynesians.
SINGAPORE—Jon Huntsman, Jr., has been sworn in as the new U.S. ambassador here . Brother Huntsman, thirty-two, a member of the Mt. Olympus Second Ward, Salt Lake Mt. Olympus Stake, is the youngest U.S. ambassador. He served a mission in Taiwan and speaks Mandarin Chinese, as well as several other dialects. He has served as U.S. deputy assistant secretary of commerce in East Asia.
WASHINGTON, D.C.—Kresimir Cosic, a former BYU basketball player and former member of the Yugoslavian Olympic basketball team, has been named deputy ambassador to the United States for the newly independent nation of Croatia. Brother Cosic was sent to the U.S. capital because he was familiar with America.
LAIE, HAWAII—The honorable Qizen Zhu, the People’s Republic of China’s ambassador to the United States, and his wife recently visited the Polynesian Cultural Center. “We have a saying in China,” the ambassador remarked. “If any foreign friend comes to Beijing on a visit and if he hasn’t visited the Great Wall, he’s not considered to have visited Beijing at all. I think the same applies to Hawaii and the Polynesian Cultural Center.”
PROVO, UTAH—Two graduate programs at Brigham Young University were listed in the top 25 percent of accredited schools in a recent U.S. survey published by U.S. News & World Report magazine. The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott School of Management and the J. Reuben Clark Law School were named among the top fifty business and law graduate programs in the nation.
Update: Number of Wards and Branches
As of 31 December 1991, there were 12,184 wards and 6,644 branches in the Church. Over a five-year period, the number of wards has increased by 1,275, and the number of branches has increased by 1,527.
A Viable Option
I must take exception to part of “Can I Watch a Movie?” (Dec. 1991.) After months of careful consideration and prayer, our family decided to box up our television and video recorder and sell them. Although we realize this is a bold move, we do not feel we are “giving up the struggle” to teach our children to choose worthy entertainment.
The author suggests we use Joseph Smith’s counsel: “Teach them correct principles and they govern themselves.” (See Messages of the First Presidency, ed. James R. Clark, 6 vols., Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1966, 3:54.) Removing the television is certainly a viable option to teaching our children to avoid evil influences in their lives.
Today’s society promotes the idea that television is a necessity. I say it is not. After removing the television, we missed it for a while but shortly forgot about it. We expect to periodically review our TV decision as our family matures, but for now we find our lives more productive and peaceful without it.
David Spackman San Pedro, California
The Museum of Church History and Art commissioned Harrison Begay, Jr., to create the sculpture of the Last Supper, featured in the April 1992 issue. The museum currently owns the work and displayed it in April and May as part of an exhibit of Last Supper artwork.
“FamilySearch®: Stepping-Stone to the Temple” (Aug. 1992) reports how the Logan Utah Stake uses FamilySearch. In the sidebar on page fifteen, “FamilySearch at a Glance,” TempleReady™ was listed as a current part of FamilySearch. Although TempleReady will eventually be a part of FamilySearch, it is at present only a pilot program. When fully implemented, TempleReady will be the means of clearing names for temple ordinances.
Clarion Call to Couples
A prophet of God has called for members of the Church in their golden years to consider a mission. I would like to echo that plea, because it was just such a couple that changed my life.
John and Lydia Parker came into my life at its lowest point, but by the time they left I knew joy beyond description. Why? Simply because they loved me and my children. I had never known the love of anyone other than my parents—no extended family, no grandparents. But here were the Parkers, putting the gospel of Jesus Christ in action.
The change was not quick and easy, and I had to learn to trust what I saw and felt. But through their influence, I began to believe in a God who loved me beyond measure.
I hope all couples in the Church will consider the clarion call. The good they can do is beyond measure.
Marion Whitley Tallahassee, Florida
The article “Believing Christ” (Apr. 1992) has helped me understand and apply Christ’s atonement in my life more than any other article I have read. I wish all the Christian world could read this piece.
Vicki Casto Scott Depot, West Virginia
Gift from Heavenly Father
In the article “To Mourn with Those That Mourn” (June 1992) someone finally expressed what I, too, feel in my heart.
I am widowed with seven children still at home. I am grateful for the gospel and the knowledge that our family can be eternal. But sometimes I do feel lonely and need understanding. The article was like a gift from Heavenly Father to me. It addressed all the issues and feelings I have experienced as a widow. My heart finally felt understood.
Karen Michelson Cottonwood, Arizona
Armed with the Gospel
The pamphlet For the Strength of Youth has been an answer to my prayers on how to teach my children gospel principles topically. I have also enjoyed the articles the magazine has printed since September 1991 that correspond with the pamphlet.
At the suggestion of a friend, I have photocopied these articles and compiled them in a notebook for each of my children. We read the pamphlet as an introduction, then study each article in depth—together. I feel that armed with these timely, inspired lessons, my children will be better prepared to withstand Satan’s influences and to make decisions that will bless their lives eternally.
Sharreen Touchet Spring Valley, California
Blessings of Foster Care
“A Safe Haven” (Apr. 1992) was a wonderful article. I was lucky enough to reap blessings from the safe haven of foster homes. I’ve been in foster care most of my life—homes where the gospel was present and homes where it was not. I feel blessed for having been able to receive the gospel and love from my foster families when I truly needed it, and I thank my foster families for the examples they set for me.
Dawn R. White Comstock, New York
“Miracle at Cumorah” (June 1992) has generated many inquiries about participation in the Hill Cumorah Pageant. Serving as a member of the cast is a unique and inspiring experience for about six hundred members each year. About 65 percent of those participants come from the eastern United States and Canada, while the remaining 35 percent come from the West. We recommend the pageant experience for families with teenage children and for single adults of all ages.
We accept applications from August 1 through December 1 each year. Application forms may be requested by writing to:
A Gift That Goes on Giving
My home teacher recently gave me a subscription to the Ensign. I had been without one for some time and didn’t know how much I had missed reading the magazine. I devour each issue; it is such a delight. I am now ordering subscriptions for my mother in Colorado and my brother in the army.
Cecil M. Warren
Wondering about Emma
Thank you for printing “My Great-Great-Grandmother, Emma Smith.” (Aug. 1992.) I have often wondered what happened to Emma, but have wondered about the credibility of materials written about her.
I appreciate the time and research Gracia N. Jones took in writing this piece that included the facts and spiritual insights as well. The pictures and artwork added a greater depth to what I was reading.
Karren Talbot Anchorage, Alaska
Wow! I’m talking about the cover of the September 1992 Ensign. I’ve never seen a cover remotely like that on your magazine before. My birthday is in September, and you couldn’t have given me a nicer gift. Nice job.
Barbara Hohmann Dallas, Texas
Grateful for Heritage
It was thrilling for me to read about Los Angeles, the city I grew up in. I was also excited to see the picture of the Mar Vista Ward meetinghouse; my parents lived in the Mar Vista Ward for forty-eight years, and I grew up there. Many of my most sacred and special memories center around events that happened in that building.
I am grateful for my Mar Vista heritage and the people there who influenced my life so deeply. I agree with a fellow Mar Vistian who said she hoped when she died, she’d be in the Mar Vista section of the celestial kingdom. I can only hope for the same.
Cindy J. Jewkes Salt Lake City
Ten Times Better
Thank you for printing “Reluctant to Marry.” (Apr. 1992.) It helped me. Because my own parents’ relationship failed, I have a deep interest in the study of relationships. I have read countless articles and books on the subject. I got more out of this four-page article than anything I have read from other sources.
Elder Matthew Keele Cleveland, Ohio